Spencer Trappist Ale | The Spencer Brewery

very good
1,151 Ratings
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Spencer Trappist AleSpencer Trappist Ale

Brewed by:
The Spencer Brewery
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
America's first Trappist beer.

Our recipe was inspired by the traditional refectory ales known as patersbier ("fathers' beer" in Flemish). These sessionable beers are brewed by the monks for their dinner table and are typically only available at the monastery. Spencer is a full-bodied, golden-hued ale with fruity accents, a dry finish and light hop bitterness. The beer is unfiltered and unpasteurized, preserving live yeast that naturally carbonates the beer in the bottle and keg, and contributes to the beer flavor and aroma.

Added by Todd on 12-27-2013

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Ratings: 1,151 |  Reviews: 227
Photo of davewlfpckfan29
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of wmartin
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Really terrific! From 750ml bottle dated for 8/2018 poured into pint glass.

Lovely fruity nose with a similar taste. Taste is generally of the classic Trappist yeast, plus some malt with a slight hoppy bitterness on the finish.

Aftertaste and memory is of the wonderful, slightly bitter finish, fruity yeast flavor, and an almost bubble-gum flavor. Very, very drinkable. Could have this every day of the week.

And for what it is worth, it had a thick, white head, with nice residual lacing.

Secretly, I rate this a 5, one of the best beers I've ever had; but if I said that, no one would believe me.

I've been very impressed by the Spencer offerings. I might add that they have nice label designs. Their label designs are very mature and elegant, much like the beers contained within. Spencer is coming-out with a quad this fall, which is much anticipated by those who care about that sort of thing.

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Photo of dfconnor
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a quality Trappist ale. Texture is similar to Orval and Duvel, yet this one has fruitier tones. Very pleasantly surprised. But the cost of this ale is higher than that of slightly better Belgian ales available at my local craft beer stores, so I probably won't be buying this too often.

 298 characters

Photo of Dentist666
3.69/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75


8 characters

Photo of LukeGude
4.21/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle. Big Belgian smell. Archetype for the style, with Belgian yeast/wheaty flavor up front, then hops.

121 characters

Photo of jp32
3.49/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orange to copper in color. Not much head retention. Aroma is of bananas, oranges, apples, bread, and belgian yeast. Cloves and whole grain bread make large appearances in the flavor, with pale malt, spices and banana lingering about. Medium body and enough carbonation to make it almost refreshing. It's good, but nothing that really stands out from the crowd here.

 377 characters

Photo of Coltron23
3.83/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.43/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of mothman
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

White head. Bit of a gusher. Golden orange color.

Spices, cloves, bananas, and Belgian yeast. Some alcohol. Medium bodied. Smooth. Very much to style. Well done.

 162 characters

Photo of TGS
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of igl
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Greywulfken
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Somewhere between medium amber and deep gold coloration, mostly clear but some sediment from the bottle is suspended in the beer. Despite a very slow and gentle pour into a tulip glass, yeasty sediment was right there and slipped into the glass. The delicate pour resulted in a slim ivory-colored foam cap that left a clean glass behind. Aromas are fruity, suggestive of both orchards and perhaps with a hint of banana; impressions of warm earthy spices and brown breads noted as well. The flavors followed the nose, with a moderate sweetness and a mild bitterness. The feel was relatively light and airy, with a little tack of shellac lingering behind. It's been a while since I've had this style of ale, but my palate memory inclines me to say this a very fine ale, and certainly recommended.

Quick edit: came back at it with another bottle, abandoning the timid pour (if the sediment's going to go in anyway, might as well have at it, eh?) and gave it a more typical pour - produced a towering head off-white head that seemed more inclined to leave some lace behind. Cheers...

 1,080 characters

Photo of 54V4G3
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Antyk
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tylerstravis
3.66/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of chinchill
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

.33 L bottle poured into a glass. Foamed over the top upon opening, causing a mess and a loss of good beer. Pours hazy, dark copper in color with a large foamy white head, Good lacing.

Aroma: Complex aroma with Belgian yeast, banana, pears, apples, baked bread, and mixed brown spices.

Flavor: largely follows the aroma but tastes better than it smells. Mildly bitter.

Feel: Medium+ soft carbonation; medium+ body; smooth, semi-dry finish.

Overall: a fine Trappist ale if not up with the best, particularly in the aroma.

 529 characters

Photo of Foley67
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of andpit
3.08/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Photo of BRiddoch
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 11.7 oz. bottle. Pours a dark honey gold with a solid foam head which lingers. Fruity smell with a mild hops background. Nice dry bitter flavor. Earthy and slightly fruity. This is a beer I aspire to Home brew.

 229 characters

Photo of ivegot3Dvision
4.34/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BigMFDaddy
3.96/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Dzu
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 0.33l bottle into chalice.
L: Turbid amber with a little white foam head.
S: Citrus, belgian yeast, banana.
T: Spicy, fruity, pears.
F: Medium carbonation , tight body for ABV.
O: Not bad one ale. A lot of difference between it and typical belgian pale ales.

 270 characters

Photo of LeeryLeprechaun
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange hue, strong and creamy white head. Lots of sediment even in the first pour.

Candy sugar aroma, pineapple, phenols, very similar to a triple in the aroma.

Sweet but with a phenolic finish. Low hop bitterness. Nice body with a high level of carbonation.

Interesting beer. It's color is deceiving and it tastes a lot like a paler beer to me. The aroma and flavor profile hint of Belgian origin but the beer I less sweet. Phenolic spice pairs well with the other flavors.

Not really sure what this beer is, style wise. It is unique though. I would have it again.

 570 characters

Photo of CPAles
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of StJamesGate
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Fizzy, hazy brass with a film of white + a few legs. 3.75
Huge whack of creamed corn plus herb, soap, and butterscotch. 3.25
Multigrain rusk, yellow apple peel, banana, soil, and fresh herbal hop bite to end. 3.5
Light-medium, fizzy, crisp. 3.75

For starters, all the signs of DMS. And the dirty yeast and rotten fruit esters are not hitting the target drinkability - some peppery phenols should come in to tame this whole thing. Hops are there, but they’re overdone, too; over-carbed… Settles down as it opens, but never gets outright good.

Second try in 2 nights of bandwagon Trappists and am not impressed. 3.5

 621 characters

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Spencer Trappist Ale from The Spencer Brewery
3.99 out of 5 based on 1,151 ratings.
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