Orval Trappist Ale | Brasserie d'Orval S.A.

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Orval Trappist AleOrval Trappist Ale
5,481 Ratings
Orval Trappist AleOrval Trappist Ale

Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Orval S.A.

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This beer is 6.2% when released in Europe, US labels say 6.9% due to labeling laws.

Many agree that the somewhat unpractical addition of this sometimes undesired yeast strain is what grants Orval its age worthiness, not to mention unique aroma, making it a one of the few beers worth cellaring.

Added by Bierman9 on 09-18-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,481 |  Reviews: 2,361
Photo of WOTO97
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: slightly cloudy burnt orange with big soapy head and nice sticky head

S: nice big spice with a faint pepper note, some sweetness complemented by pear, raisin, and coriander flavors, bit of alcohol (more noticeable as the beer warms), some medicine/chalk

T: slight chalk/medicine that is most noticeable on the finish, pleasant orange and coriander up front, some fennel with complementary sweetness from malt

M: clean yet still slightly dense on the palate, very dry finish

D: very complex flavor profile that seemingly shifts throughout, definitely looking forward to aging a few of these and going back after a few fresh bottles

 637 characters

Photo of output01x
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 330 mL. bottle (Best Before 05/19/2015) into a tulip glass.

A slow pour let's loose a giant 3-finger cream-colored head. The body is an orange amber with jets of carbonation bubbles practically racing to the surface. The head recedes after quite some time to a thick, clumpy covering and thin foam ring. Thick lacing clings to the sides of the glass in large clumps.

Belgian yeast gives this beer a truly delicious smell. Aromas of green apples and white grape juice really make this beer mouth-watering. Floral hops in the background lend a little character to this beer.

Green grapes and pears lend a light flavor at first sip. A light floral and somewhat grassy hops flavor settles in that goes quite nicely with the fruit flavors. A slight spiciness sets in at the end of each sip. The flavors here are not bold by any means, but are elegant and playful.

Medium bodied with strong carbonation, this beer is as drinkable as it is delicious (which can be quite dangerous). Without being watery, this beer is easily sipped and gulped. The carbonation seems to be just right as it does not get in the way of the flavor but really helps to move this beer along.

 1,178 characters

Photo of zp6167a
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of bloberglawp
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

What is there to be said?
Served in a chimay chalise, golden ale with nice fluffy head and sexy lacing. Brett and hop aroma some aromas of wild flowers seems to come about, same 2 elements (brett and hops) take the front row seat in flavor as well. Carbonation is prickly and makes you want to take another gulp... if this came in huge 3L, bombers I'd not work for I'd drink all day for shure.

Soooo... basicaly a very good trappist ale, more of these please!

 462 characters

Photo of fx20736
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

No surprise, there's a ton of reviews on this beer already. I've found that from memory, I didn't enjoy this beer much a few years ago. I took a flyer on it again after having been exposed to a lot more styles of beers through BA.

This time around, quite enjoyable. I like it as a summer / warm fall day beer. Adventurous, wide ranging and truly a belgian treat. Enjoy!

 373 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 0.33L bottle into an over-sized wine glass.

A: The beer is a bright amber color, with a large foamy white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is robust with mostly yeast and fruit, along with some spice.

T: The taste is very sweet and fruity with flavors of lemon, orange, banana & pineapple. There’s some yeast presence and a mild hops character, but hardly any bitterness. I wasn’t expecting this beer to be so sweet, but it’s definitely a unique and pleasant surprise.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, high carbonation, very clean finish for such a sweet beer.

D: This one is very tasty and goes down ridiculously easy with no hint of alcohol. I could certainly stay with this beer for quite a while.

 779 characters

Photo of Lunruj
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Darker pale to amber color, hazy. Huge head. Be careful pouring it into glass. Totally characteristic smell. I've heard the beer tastes like rotten strawberries. And I have to agree. The smell is fruity and it really reminds me strawberries, maybe cherries and possibly wine. The taste is actually quite bitter. Other than that is reminds fermented fruit. One can feel the alcohol quite well considering it only has 6.2 % ABV. However, it mixes well with the aroma and overall feel. The foam tastes disgusting though. (Which is pretty surprising and unusual.) Pretty different from anything I've had so far. A beer you will remember, definitely worth trying!

 658 characters

Photo of djhowell
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Saviour
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of core42
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of climax
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in December of 2007, sampled May 2009. Bottle erupted when I popped the top. Needless to say, it was eager to give some wicked head, one which never really faded. Color was an entirely cloudy burnt orange.

Excellent nose, very invigorating and complex. Great balance of sweet, sour, and bitter. Flavors include, but not entirely entail; green apple, sour grapes, hay, spice and grassy hops.

Flavor was equally as enjoyable. The malt seemed to shine through a bit more in taste as opposed to nose. The malt and hops were in perfect harmony. Dark sugars, spice, cranberry, apple, wood, and maybe licorice are some discernible flavors among several others of which I cannot put my finger on.

The body was very light-hearted given the flavor explosion. However, it was never watery and the ample carbonation left a nice sharpness on the tongue through a somewhat dry long finish.

This one went down quite smooth and was really a joy to break down and review... as well as drink. Really my first honest example of this style (other than perhaps Leffe and some others that I didn't think were anything to write home about), it turned me on and hopefully more are in my (immediate) future.

 1,197 characters

Photo of DavidST
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 330ml bottle into an Orval Goblet, bottled on 7/10/2010.

This pours a hazy dull orange with a large foamy white head with large bubbles and a long retention. Smell is nice and fruity, some spices, maybe some flowers. Medium light feel with lots of carbonation. The taste is different from the way it smells, there is very little sweetness up front, maybe a little citrus fruit and malted wheat, a little peppery and lemon hints but its mostly dry / bitter on the way down with a little alcohol burn, very tasty. Overall an excellent beer, more bitter and drier than the few other Trappist beers I've had tastes like I love, its very good.

 653 characters

Photo of WalkingStickMan
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Caught some nail polish at the end of the smell...weird.

Always love this, I like this beer to warm a little while drinking for sure, but but also think that it benefits from a colder temperature in the beginning. Love this monkfood fresh and aged, this one's sort of middle of the road because it's sort of in between the best ages.

 335 characters

Photo of tobelerone
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2 year old bottle still has plenty of carbonation. Huge fluffy slowly settling head on a hazy orange colored body; a few floaties here and there; lovely curtains of creamy lace.

Great aromas of pepper, citrus, yeast. Delicious flavor with Brett funk at appealing but not overpowering levels; peppery notes and the lemony flavors are in there too. Really well rounded and appealing. Slightly bitter.

Clean finish, crisp and refreshing. Flavors are really sharply defined and just excellent. I'd prefer this over the many saisons and other brett beers on the scene today. Does the trick in terms of taste and refreshment. A classic for a reason!

 645 characters

Photo of ndekke39
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared a bottle of this with some good friends. Bottled on 1/24/06 and best-by 1/24/11. Poured a cloudy honey color with a bright white head and lots of lacing. Smells of so many things... apple, honey, banana, peach, yeast. Wonderful to stick your nose in. Taste was dry, fruit, and hoppy. Overall flavors ran the gamut from sweet to bitter to sour. Each sip brought something new out. Mouthfeel was bright and fizzy. Overall, excellent beer. Great to sip. Highly recommended.

Tried another bottle in September 2007. Bottled on 1/24/06 and best-by 1/24/11. Poured like a very cloudy cider. Small, white head, with little bits of lacing. Smells again of apple, plus some champagne. A little bitterness like an apple peel. Needs to warm up a bit. Very effervescent, like a champagne! This must be one result of the aging. Again, it's wonderful to drink, especially with good friends. Looking forward to trying another bottle next Labor Day!

And we shared yet another bottle in September 2008. Bottled 1/24/06, best by 1/24/11. Poured like clear-ish apple juice, nice thick white head, lots of lacing, great retention. Smells of apples and champagne. Taste is starting to flatten out. Very dry. Taste of apples, bitter at the end, like old coffee. Very effervescent mouthfeel. It's getting less nuanced, but we have 2 more bottles and will see it through to Labor Day 2010!

Opened our fourth bottle in September 2009. Like the rest, bottled 1/24/06 and best by 1/24/11. Poured a clear deep yellow. Lots of foam, very fizzy and rocky. Lots of lacing on the glass. Aromas of yeast, fermented apple cider, pears, white wine like a Riesling. Tastes of white wine, champagne, apples. Taste begins well, but ends with a flat burn. Almost tastes old. Mouthfeel is a bit flat, despite all the foam. Still interesting, but the beer is mellowing out. One more bottle for next year!

Opened our fifth and final bottle in September 2010. Like every one of them, bottled 1/24/06 and good until 1/24/11, although it doesn't seem to be holding up too well. Very foamy on the pour, with a consistent fluffy white head. Color looks darker and cloudier this year. Smells like apple cider vinegar. Tastes a little flat, like cardboard or wood; it's like a very weak wine. Mouthfeel is still fizzy and bright. This beer has about three months left in its life, but already it seems to be turning into nothing.

 2,390 characters

Photo of Pstanek
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a fantastic beer but maybe because it suits my narrow tastes. Very volitale. Produced a thick heavy head even with a gentle pour from the bottle. Violent bubbling (tornado like) continued from bottom of glass. It made me wonder if something was wrong. After tasting I was pretty sure nothing was wrong. The taste is unique but wonderful. Hard to compare because not like any other.

 396 characters

Photo of Adamdc
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into tulip.

A: Cloudy, deep amber body topped off by dense, rocky white head. It took a while to pour the whole beer due to very actice carbonation.

S: Lots of lemon right of the bat followed by yeast, hay and bread.

T: There's some nice funk and sour that hits you. The lemon is still there with some green apple and banana and the finish is earthy and bitter. Lots going on here.

M: Very, very dry with just the right amount of crispness.

D: Very high! I wanr one of these on a hot summer day. It's very refreshing.

This is my fourth Orval. The first two times I had it, my palate wasn't quite 'there' yet. The third one tasted pretty good but tonight...this one was great!

 695 characters

Photo of Travlr
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A unique Trappist with a clear orange and amber color, small white head with nice lacing. Aroma of coriander, orange peel, black pepper and faint vanilla. Tastes of citrus, orange and coriander. Medium mouth. Good bitter finish. Mellows slightly with age if kept well. Very nice.

 279 characters

Photo of mjohn27603
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours almost clear in appearance. Leaving a high foamy head. 4 fingers worth in the glass with big bubbles of carbonation. ARoma of grape juice and fruityness with clean crisp smell. Second pours reveals a more golden apperance but stiill with transperancy. A slight hint of orange and grape flavor. Kind of like champagne beer. A very light and crisp taste. Flavor is like a knife to the palate. Extremely drinkable.

 417 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love me some Orval. This beer has grown on me quite a bit over time. Probably along the same way that wild ales have. Nice earthy and mildly funky tones on there. Robust and fairly thick. I always wish there was more of this beer when I finish off the bottle.

 259 characters

Photo of Tballz420
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew is a sunset orange color, quite a sizable cream head on the top. Fair amount of lace. Sweet bubblegum on nose, bananas, hints of lemon. Fairly light bodied, sweet light malt front dusted with lemon, plently of a nice mix of spiciness and sweetness. Big hop presence. Quite a complex brew, certainly worth trying.

 322 characters

Photo of birderbeerer
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy golden with foamy, over the top head.

Complex and rich aroma. Sour bread and white wine scent in it.

Wonderfully complex taste as well. Bready, spiced pears, flowers. Sharp edge from the carbonation and maybe an herbal hop. Wonderful. Refreshing and fulfilling.

 269 characters

Photo of mltobin
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Orval Trappist Ale is without a a doubt quite delicous.

Served in a bottle from a local spirit shopee. this beer is dark amber in color with a two finger head.

The smell is semi-carmel, semi-spicy, good all around.

The taste is kinda rich and sweet, but very nice.

Mouthfeel is kinda complex, but not very much so. very nice brew indeed.

Drinkability is high, great beer all around.

 391 characters

Photo of Ratman197
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 4 1996 poured a clear golden amber with a small lasting light amber head.

The nose was fullof tropical fruits, citrus and cookie. there were also some light vanilla notes and a hint of leather.

The mouthfeel was light bodied and crisp with some dryness and lighty tart.

The flavor was fruity with some straw and cookie, light leather and a bit of carmel. It was even more complex but hard to find words for all the flavors going on . It finishes crisp dry and a bit tart.

This beer was very drikable and aged amazingly well with no hints of oxidation.

 581 characters

Orval Trappist Ale from Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
Beer rating: 4.2 out of 5 with 5,481 ratings