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

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
5,365 Ratings
Orval Trappist AleOrval Trappist Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
Belgium
orval.be

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

BEER STATS
Ratings:
5,365
Reviews:
2,336
Avg:
4.18
pDev:
12.44%
 
 
Wants:
358
Gots:
904
For Trade:
11
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,365 |  Reviews: 2,336
Photo of birderbeerer
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
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 +5.7%
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 +5.7%
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

Photo of kbub6f
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought locally (Grapevine refrigerated shelves), a couple of weeks in my fridge, reviewed 45F-70F.

The head is huge, off-white and dense. The color is a slight hazy orange-amber. Some swirly sediment. The lacing is thick sticky clumpy.

The nose is slightly sweet, yeasty and a little fruity. Alcohol and spice give it almost a rum-like smell. The front is peppery, with some grapes giving it a dry wine-like flavor. Interesting. The middle goes slightly sour, with hints of apples. The tang is almost a little tonic-watery. The finish is a fantastic fresh, dry, bready experience with noticeable alcohol. There's almost a red wine aftertaste. Very dry. This is one of my favorites. A great, complex, original beer.

 720 characters

Photo of jono311
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

light brown orange hued amber.

nose is lightly honeyed with just a few hints of herbal hops and floral notes.

taste is honeyed sweetness with lemon fruitiness, followed by an herbaceous hop presence that is mellow and perfectly suited to the style.

Mouthfeel nice full carbonation indicative of a bottle conditioned Belgian ale and a long enjoyable finish.

Not much presence of the brett yeast except for a faint pucker in the middle of the sip that adds to the dry refreshing character of the ale.

Overall- A great beer and a great example of a Belgian pale. Definitely one I will seek out again.

 603 characters

Photo of mklinger
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a goblet. A very thick, rocky head formed. There's an effervescence about this beer that is very pretty in the pour. The beer pours a pale orange amber. I did my best to get a clean pour but it came out pretty hazy. It's an interesting, complex looking beer.

Aroma was great. i got some lemon & herbs right away followed quickly by a bit of the barnyard aroma that folks talk about as wet horse blanket. Again, this is just such a complex aroma profile.

Taste is complex too, though I didn't find that it held up quite as well as the aroma (but it was close). More of the barnyard in my taste profile, not as much bitterness as I thought there might be. Good bit of sourness, too. Quite tart.

Rich mouthfeel. The carbonation lends a fullness to this beer that is otherwise greater than the body. Quite nice.

 822 characters

Photo of AudioGilz
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hazy, amber/orange.....enormous white head that slowly reduces to a coating that leaves lots of lace.
The aroma is pungent lemon and flowers that gave me goosebumps. One of the best smelling beers I have tried.
The mouthfeel is smooth, creamy, medium bodied, and crisp.
I really enjoy the tartness in this beer, lemony, spicy hops, then a slightly bitter and crisp finish. This beer is different than other Belgian's I have tried in that it's more tart and pungent. I thoroughly enjoyed this beer and will definitely purchase it regularly.

 544 characters

Photo of scott451
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

revised on Nov 14, 2010

Bottled 2010 best before 2015. Poured into a Duvel tulip after letting it warm up from fridge temperature for about an hour. The unique bottle shape does a good job in keeping sediment out of the pour. A slightly hazy reddish amber. The toweing rocky head head sticks around. Lots of bubbly lacing.

Strongly carbonated. Fruity smell. There is a lot to the taste. It is very smooth but "deep". One taste I can pick out is leather although there is much more there. The brett gives it a nice twang, not sour at all, but a bit of a bitter finish.

Medium light body. Complex and very drinkable. A top shelf brew.

 635 characters

Photo of gonzo138
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- nice coppery color, frothy head that was slow to dissapate, good lacing
S - Fruity aroma, light hoppy smell as well
T - sweet, a little hoppy, the fruity taste reiminded me a little of apples
M - nice carbonation, with dry nice feel
D- Very drinkable, smoother than some of the stronger belgian ales, which can really be viewed as a plus or a minus I felt it complemented the taste, goes down lightly

 407 characters

Photo of dogger6253
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark brown color with a huge, bubbly head. Banana and cloves in the nose with corriander and hops, some plums, some raisins, and some pears. The taste is fruity up front with dates, plums, pears, grapes and bananas taking the center stage. The finish is more bitter, a little more than you'd think to expect, yet so crisp and delightful: sour grapes, hops, and spice at the end.

A major carbonation buzz going on in this one, medium body - crisp and refreshing. Great taste, this was incredibly unque and very welcomed.

 520 characters

Photo of Vengeance526
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy light orange color and a HUGE white head that very slowly settles down leaving some nice lacing on the side.

Smells strongly of lemon, strong floral hops and a lot of spices. Very inviting and you can really feel the spices hit the back of your nose so I can tell I'm in for an interesting taste.

Taste hits right off with strong notes of citrus, mostly lemon with a little bit of orange. A floral burst of hop flavor lies underneath with a lot of spice present. Some faint notes of yeast can also be detected.

This one starts and finishes very dry. Overall a pretty amazing beer that can truly be savored.

 622 characters

Photo of noclue
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving type: 11.2 ounce bottle. Bottled on 12/12/03

Appearance: Highly carbonated. Golden-Amber murky haze. Tall rocky, frothy white head. Decent lacing. Not very long lasting, but my glass wasn't incredibly clean.

Smell: Strong floral aroma. Fruity. Spicy. Leather. I could smell it sitting two feet away from me.

Taste: Tart, sweet, bitter, phenolic, fruity, hay.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied... Crisp, dry finish.

Drinkability/Overall: Crisp and refreshing. Not my favorite Trappist, but still very good. Easy and rewarding to drink.

 547 characters

Photo of gingerbread
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of hagbergl
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33 cL bottle of Orval into my Chimay goblet.

Appearance (4/5): Big two and a half finger head of of white over a cloudy orange body. Beautiful. Tight bubbles tell me this is a well-carbonated beer. Extraordinary head retention.

Smell (4.25/5): Yeasty and bretty smell. Lots of sweet bread and light tart funkiness, spice, herbal and medicinal notes, grassy notes from the hops.

Taste (4.5/5): Spicier and yeastier in the taste. Not very sweet. Plenty of brett, though it's pretty light compared to some other beers with brettanomyces that I've had. At the front of the tongue, get some nice effervescence, middle of the tongue transition from bretty funk to a wheat bread and spicy yeasty clove-y flavor that's slightly bitter and lingers for a while. Very interesting and totally unique.

Mouthfeel (4.5/5): Excellent carbonation level. Brett adds some effervescence. Very smooth and goes down easy. The lower alcohol level on this beer means you don't have to exercise too much caution with it. A very nice summertime beer.

Overall (4.5/5): Orval is legendary for a reason. It's a totally awesome beer and a great intro to Brett-infused beer. While it's not a particularly intense beer, it's very refreshing and certainly a unique take on the Belgian Pale Ale. One of the rare Trappist ales that isn't thick and heavy. It also features more obvious hop character than those beers. Great stuff that's certainly worth buying if you see it hanging out on the shelf. And fear not–Orval has quite a good shelf life. Dust off that bottle from 2010 and enjoy some vintage beer!

 1,583 characters

Photo of BergBeer
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Orange-Copper with a thick white head. Very active.

Smell: Green apple, white grapes, farmhouse funk, slight ginger, and warm honey. Bright and sweet.

Taste: Honey covered apples, juicy green figs, green grassy hops, Belgian sugar, earthy bitter hops, and just a hint of grapefruit citrus zest. Beautiful.

Feel: Bright. Flavors dance with a peppery lightness on the palate. As the flavors play out the beer dries out earthy. No hint of alcohol.

Overall: Deceptively light with depth of flavor and complexity. Fruity, funky, juicy, earthy all these flavors dance on the palate and leave just a kiss of flavor as it departs leaving you wanting more.

 661 characters

Photo of techdiver
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy burnt orange with a nice two finger head that dissipates slowly.

Malt and hops present a balanced aroma, with a touch of undetermined fruit.

Taste echoes the nose, a well balanced brew with the hops coming through in the finish.

Carbonation is excellent making it a pleasure to drink.

Drinkability is good too, considering the lower ABV with the great other qualities exhibited.

 404 characters

Photo of frank4sail
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

06 12 2006 (batch)
Big alcohol nose with some pale malt sweetness. Huge off-white head with big airy bubbles. Classic hazy pale ale look with lots og bubble action in the goblet (center). The rocky head and lace is lasting. This brew starts out on a good footing, because its look is almost flawless. The initial taste is one of smooth malt sweetness then strong warm alcohol notes leads your tongue to a bitter hop/fruit finish. The fruit most resembles bitter peach. Quite a complex and bold brew. Medium to full mouth with a nice creamy feel and coating left in the mouth. A truly crafted Belgian Ale!

 613 characters

Photo of NateF90
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BruceHartford3
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BeerMarshall
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle, bottling date 2/2010. appearance is the color of caramel with good head. Very hoppy compared to other trappist ales. Very refreshing, highly carbed. I don't really get the brettanomyces funk that I was expecting, but not really overly familiar with this class of beers, so maybe I am just not sure what to look for. Overall very good beer, very refreshing and pleasant to drink.

 398 characters

Photo of draheim
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330mL bottle (bottled 5/19/10, best by 5/19/15) poured into a tulip. Gorgeous golden amber color with an enormous fluffy white head that fills the glass. Wonderful effervescent carbonation erupts from the bottom of the glass. Head just won't quit, looks like a mountain of delicious whipped cream. This is what a beer should look like. As the head ever so slowly breaks down, it leaves behind not lace but lovely cobwebs around the sides of my glass.

Aroma is tart and funky - green apples and Belgian yeast.

Taste is crisp, dry, refreshing. Pale malt, Belgian yeast and some hops to pull everything together for a nice clean finish.

Overall this is hands down one of my favorite year-round, always-available beers. Why don't I have a case of this at the ready at all times?

 777 characters

Photo of nullbort
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of match1112
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

purchased this for the first time finally, mainly because of the bowling pin shaped bottle and because because the store had the orval goblet next to it for $4.99. also has a bottled on date of 22/04/2010. pours out a cloudy golden orange color with the thickest three finger bright white head i have ever seen. the head slowly settles to an uneven foam resting atop the beer for the remainder of the drink. smells and tastes of sweet fruits, yeast and a little spice also has a little funk to it, but not in a bad way. mouthfeel is a medium body with a rich creamieness that is overtaken by a slight hop bite with a dry finish but very minimal bitterness. i can see why this is one of the worlds best.

 702 characters

Photo of churchillps
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 11oz bottle into a broad mouthed glass. Freshness date up til 2011.

A: Amber/bronzed honey color. Nice frothy head. No retention but head lingers.

S/T: Both so complex I hardly know what to pinpoint. Floral, herbs, a bunch of lemon. Super dry all over. Incredibly complex and delicious

 301 characters

Photo of amano_h
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

<1yr old 37.5cl at Dulle Griet (Gent, Belgium)

Wonderful lemony zest and honey jump straight out along with loads and loads of carbonation. Mild grassy hops with a faint hint of yeast and funk also join the party after you give it some time.

A harmonious blend of lemon, honey, and earthy flavors first comes to mind on the palate, followed by some unforeseen fruit in the form of melons, white grapes and some pear. (shoutout to all the pear!) Faint flavors of caramel and pine are also present on the back end.

Medium-light body with explosive carbonation comparable to mineral water. Mostly dry finish with the fruit bouquet and hops tenaciously holding on to the bitter finish (pun intended)

 698 characters

Orval Trappist Ale from Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
4.18 out of 5 based on 5,365 ratings.
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