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

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Orval Trappist AleOrval Trappist Ale
BA SCORE
4.21/5
Exceptional
5,428 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
Ranking:
#981
Reviews:
2,351
Ratings:
5,428
pDev:
12.35%
Bros Score:
4.92
 
 
Wants:
359
Gots:
931
Trade:
11
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,428 |  Reviews: 2,351
Photo of RMW66
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of akolb
4.06/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of srv33
4.89/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally getting to review one of my favorite Trappist ales. Bottled on 15/12/16

Appearance: Pours a mysterious hazy orange, nearly an amber with a thin head and beautiful lacing that clings in fine wisps.

Aroma: Scent of the usual belgian yeasts, clove banana bubblegum - along with a slight funk that makes Orval what it is, hints of the sea and grass.

Mouthfeel: Unbelivable moutfeel unlike any of the other Trappist ales, but is closest to St Bernardus Tripel, fine carbonation whose articulation dances in the creaminess of it all.

Taste: Lighter than the usual suspects in the style, but with such nice herbal, sea salt, floral notes as to give it something none of the others do. Its funk reminds me of a saison, but its fullness tells you its a trappist belgian pale ale. Along with the herbal notes comes hints of citrus and pepper which close it off.

This is a top brew, and I'm glad I finally got around to reviewing it, because I believe it to have a spot among my very favorites, and is certainly within my top three of all belgian brews. Reserved and mysterious; absolute class act.

 1,104 characters

Photo of teddibrewski
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

cloudy amber color with a thick off white head great retention. smells hoppy citrus with a little sour funk as well. taste like a perfectly belgian pale ale with a a little funk to it. One of my favorites.

 205 characters

Photo of Stakebone
4.91/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A lot going on in this beer. Head/color as described in other reviews. Smells an tastes are numerous. Upfront is earthy, cidery, cedar like, slight vinegary, fruity, flowery hop aromas. Full mouthfeel compliments the slightly old tree fruit flavors. Bitterness from hops and some sour. Some drinks I taste Vietnamese pho with Asian spices and basil. Others dried tobacco and cider. Exceptional beer.

 407 characters

Photo of MattMorin
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of eberesford
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a huge head, even when fresh from the fridge. Mid amber. Aroma slightly phenolic, cloves, musty fruit. Flavour fruity peppery with mandarin at the end. Very full mouth.

 174 characters

Photo of joshautry
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Jtee
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

From a 330ml bottle served at 14 degrees Celcius into a chalice. The bottle has been aged for 6 months.

Appearance: A beautiful looking beer. It pours a veiled deep amber / light copper with 2 fingers (3cm) of foamy, tan head that settles into a thick cap after 8 minutes. Excellent retention and nice lacing as a bonus.

Aroma: Excellent - pleasant and nuanced. Medium intensity balancing towards sweet. Malty notes include faint caramel and toffee with biscuity pale malt. Floral, spicy, and citrusy hops. Moderate esters that make me think of apple and pear. There's an interesting vinous quality and a faint mustiness.

Taste: Simply delicious. Medium-strong and well-balanced. Pale, grainy malts with faint notes of caramel and toffee. Floral, spicy, and citrusy hops. I'm impressed how well the aroma reflects the taste. Fruity esters of apple and pear. Slightly peppery as well as tart. The finish is balanced and a tad dry.

Mouthfeel: Very enjoyable. Medium-light body with perfect carbonation. Slightly drying and prickly with a hint of warmth.

Overall: A very impressive beer demonstrating excellent craftsmanship. The ABV is hidden and no unacceptable off-flavours come through. I had this beer just short of two years ago when I was first getting into beer. Back then I didn't have the appreciation I have for it today. If you haven't tried it yet, I say it's worth it.

 1,384 characters

Photo of Clarth
4.06/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of sjrider
3.79/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Bdubz94
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Excited for this one-- hear it is unique among Trappist beer.

Poured from a 12oz bottle bottled on 12/8/15 (good until 12/8/20). Fridge temp. Into a snifter.

Wow. Hello foam! Even with a delicate pour, you are going to get a HUGE head--probably the biggest I have ever seen on a bottled beer. The beer is crystal clear at fist but hazy once the whole bottle is poured. A lovely medium amber hue. Head recedes very slowly, so get comfy while pouring. Heavy lacing like none I have seen before. Just such a foamy, frothy beer. There is a head until the last sip.

Upon cracking the cap off, I am met with the aroma of spices. Very spicy, very yeasty, slightly fruity (apples, pears), slightly funky.

Taste is spicy, yeasty, floral and slightly malty with hints of apple and pear.

Feel is crisp, dry, and light with medium carbonation.

Overall a very unique beer-- like none I have had before. This likely due to the unique yeast used. I definitely recommend trying this one. I will likely revisit it in the future, maybe pick up a bottle or two to age...

 1,057 characters

Photo of siebevl
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Red5StandingBy
3.98/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from unique 12oz bottle into Bell's Hopslam Tulip. Bottled on July 13th 2016. Best by July 13th 2021.

L: Orange, hazy, massive rocky fluffy, off-white. Ridiculous retention level. gorgeous lacing.

S: Very floral, juniper, yeast is present as expected.

T: Again very floral, juniper and lemon, very tart. Not a big fan, but an excellently crafted beer.

F: Medium body, dry, heavily carbonated.

O: This is a good beer but I am not a big fan.

 465 characters

Photo of kitch
4.56/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 330ml bottle, bottled on 3rd February 2016, best before 3rd February 2021, and poured into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: A clear copper colour with an almost two finger white head that had great retention and left nice sticky lacing.

Aroma: Very fruity berries, grape, apple and pear with hints of coriander and brett.

Taste: Nice gentle fruitiness, berries, grape, bubblegum and plum with a light tartness, light peppery spice, brett, funk and a hint of banana.

Mouthfeel: Dry-ish, medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Overall: Very nice and very well balanced beer, and a must buy beer in my book.

 609 characters

Photo of Estria
4.36/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of PDXAmbassador
4.54/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of bshefftz
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Maestro0708
4.52/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.9oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.
Best by December of 2020. 6.9%abv

Pours a golden amber color and is mostly opaque. A large, off-white head develops and has great retention. Some nice lacing is left on the glass.

The ale's aroma begins with a subtle tart lemon scent, followed by vaguely fruity and floral notes.

Flavor is complex as can be, with tart lemon, fruity citrus, hop bitterness, funk, and floral character. All of this blends together with beautiful balance.

Mouth feel is medium light, highly carbonated and crisp.

 538 characters

Photo of BrewNoob1
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Reddanm1
3.07/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

The Orval Trappist Ale was a very different, interesting beer to drink. The beer poured very lots of head and took awhile to settle. The color was very light amber, with aroma of citrus and yeast. The beer was very smooth drinking, but tasted very citrusy. The aftertaste of the beer was very strong yeast, but light. Overall, the beer was fair.

 350 characters

Photo of jmarod7
4.04/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of handmuffin
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Served from bottle into glass at home. Gushes even when opened gently, pours with enormous seemingly endless white head. Medium amber in color, with orangish tint, hazy and medium low clarity. Bright spicy, fruity aroma with Brett barnyard funkiness in the background. Flavor is just as complex: yeasty spice and fruit with wet hay earthiness. Medium full body with lively carbonation and a refreshing slightly dry finish. Overall this beer is absolutely great but very different from what is expected of a Trappist ale. The addition of Brett produces an enticing funky and sour aroma and flavor that pairs well with the more common Belgian spicy, fruity yeast. I do not get much hop aroma or flavor so this is probably an older bottle, so I guess I have a reason to try it again!

 780 characters

Photo of dougnboston
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I absolutely love this beer. In the proper glass it pops with a sweet herbal, slightly sour, aroma. You won't be surprised to find the taste is the same. These monks make just this one beer for distribution. You should get a thick white head and don't be surprised to find a few floaters (tasty yeast) should you pour the full bottle as it's bottle conditioned. Enjoy.

 373 characters

Photo of TrojanRB
4.48/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Orval Trappist Ale from Brasserie d'Orval S.A.
Beer rating: 4.21 out of 5 with 5,428 ratings
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