St. Vrain Tripel | Left Hand Brewing Company

St. Vrain TripelSt. Vrain Tripel
263 Ratings
St. Vrain TripelSt. Vrain Tripel

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by cbl2 on 10-15-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 263 |  Reviews: 106
Photo of Jacobpaul81
1.09/5  rDev -71%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Right off the top, did not like this one at all. Picked it up on a whim because I really love Left Hand. Drank in October 2010, so it may have not aged well. Not sure. I served to 5 different people, got 5 similar responses.

A - Poured out hazy yellow, white foamy head. Basically looked like an unfiltered wheat. Expected the beer to be a little darker, with less foam and lacing.

S - Excessively yeasty smell. Could not pull anything out beyond the yeast. Expected some cloves and other spices, but these were undetectable.

T - The taste was super grainy/yeasty. Not much in the way of spices and almost zero sweetness. Had a dishwatery flavor to it that was very unappealing.

M - Heavily carbonated that you could feel on your tounge.

D - This was not a very good beer at the time of drinking. Not sure how it was straight from brewery but it did not age well at all.

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Photo of iMiah
1.12/5  rDev -70.2%

Photo of briman
2.58/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Served from bottle into standard pint glass.

Pours a light-to-medium golden amber color. Crystal clear. Over a two inch fluffy white head, exellent retention, settling into decent lacing.

Aroma is sweet, some fruits, bready, and definately a candy like character, though, I can't decide if it's cotton candy or more like a really sweet toffee. Some vanilla in there as well.

With all the aromas, I was expecting something different. All I get is a soured fruit dominance, flowing all the way through to a almost sour & puckering bitter aftertaste. That couples with an obvious alcohol contribution.

Medium body, high carbonation...fizzy going in the glass. Tough to get a feel for the balance, and even harder to separate out the flavors. What I get in the aroma is nothing like what I get in the taste. Honestly, this one just doesn't work for me...the flavor and alcohol just don't mesh well in what I consider and enjoyable way. It's disagreeable enough that I can't even appreciate it for it's complexity. Not Lefthand's best effort.

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Photo of Derek
2.62/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

2006 vintage.

A: Hazy yellow, floaties, no head.

S: Pineapple, alcohol, spice, wheat.

T: Alcohol up front, light spicing, tropical fruit, slightly herbal/minty.

M: Some residual sweetness, dry alcohol finish.

D: It's drinkable, but it's below average for a tripel.

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Photo of ygtbsm94
2.75/5  rDev -26.9%

Photo of wmaldridge
2.79/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

For the most part I really like the offerings from Left Hand. I really wasn't impressed with this one. St. Vrain was poured into a New Belgium Globe and the appearance was very thin looking and had very little head to speak of. The beer had almost a musty smell to it with hints of banana and coriander. The taste was very weak in flavor and had an alcohol aftertaste. This beer was very thin and wasn't the best that I have had, but I made it through the bottle and probably won't purchase this one again.

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Photo of scruffwhor
2.82/5  rDev -25%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pours a more clear than hazey or cloudy, muted sunshine. Not a lot of bubbles or head for a tripel. A little lacing slinks off the glass slowly. The light aroma of honey and fruits and very subtle. Had to strain to get any definite aromas. The taste was also on the bland side, but did have some more of that standard tripel tastes that I enjoy. Light sugary fruit, hints of honey and some watery caramel. With the lack of carbonation, the palate lacked that pop I expect from a tripel.

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Photo of Thorpe429
2.98/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes. On tap at the brewery in August 2009.

Pours a very hazy golden color with a slight white head and lacing, though nowhere where this should be at with the style. The nose is a bit spicy with some light fruit and alcohol. There's a bit of fruit in the taste as well as yeast and spice, but a bit plain. Quite a bit boozy in the feel. Drinks alright, but I prefer their hoppy stuff.

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Photo of Photekut
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Photo of ChainChompsky
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Photo of frankflores
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Photo of benito
3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Leadville Liquors has been dutifully stocking this on the top shelf for the last few months. I promised myself that I wouldn't break down and buy it (at $10.99), but that I'd wait to make a trip to Longmont to try it at the brewery. But, time and a need for a good beer pairing undid my will power.

A: Cloudy and champagne-like. It looks like a wit.

S: Lots of bubblegum and candy sugar. Not much else to speak of.

T: Very sweet upfront with the drying finish that I'd expect. The flavors are straightforward--again, candy sugar into light pepper--and somewhat pedestrian.

M and D: Medium-bodied with no sign of the ABV poking through. It's quenching and easy to drink.

Overall, this is a passable, though unexceptional and very straightforward interpretation of a trippel. I wouldn't object to having this again, but I would never buy it--especially at the exorbitant price Left Hand is charging. There is at least one exceptional tripel (New Belgium's) that I can get more of for less money all over Colorado. Try it, if someone else is buying it. Otherwise, take a pass.

Like the Twin Sisters DIPA, this is an underwhelming beer to market as part of the "Big Mo" series. Hopefully the smoked porter will be better.

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Photo of Guitars_and_beer
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Photo of yaksurf
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Photo of DELLmark14
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Photo of Faxmesomehalibut
3.02/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of ArrogantB
3.03/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at FR, clear golden color that could be mistaken for a Budweiser, the head was sparse and white. The smell was a very light spiciness. The taste was bland at first and then a little alcohol and some spice. This was the blandest Belgian beer I have ever had. This one was a letdown but I was glad I had it on tap instead of forking over the 11$ for a 750ml.

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Photo of teromous
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Hazy light golden color with a thin white head that fades quickly.
Aroma: Slight metallic scent, an alcohol aroma, and kind-of a peach aroma.
Taste: There is a faint caramel sweetness that is a bit watered down. There is a light tang and a bit of banana pudding flavor.
Mouthfeel: It has a nice thick coating feeling on the palate. Not quite as dry as I normally get out of a tripel, but nice.
Overall: A decent drink but pulled in too many directions like taffy, and very thin in the flavor department.

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Photo of StargherKing
3.14/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

After reading the reviews on this one I wasn't sure, but I REALLY wanted that bottle, so I went ahead and gave it a shot. Pours a very hazy gold (almost orange) with large flakes of yeast floating throughout. A friend trying it with me actually described it as looking like "Cinnamon Toast Beer". That being said, it IS a belgian tripel, so I wasn't too surprised. There was a little fluffy head, not too much, that settled down and stuck around in a thin disc throughout. The smell was sweet, maybe just a little hint of a sour aroma, with pear and grape, some apple, and a bit of spice (just a bit). The taste followed very closely, with pear and apple coming through, a bit more of a sour note, and an almost cloying sweetness, with the spice kicking in at the end. Honestly after reading the reviews I wasn't expecting it to be nearly as rich as it was. Mouthfeel was good, crisp and smooth at the same time, not thin but not oily at all. Drinkability was pretty low for me. Between the richness and high ABV I was barely able to finish my glass. Luckily, my fiance seemed to enjoy it quite a bit. I wouldn't recommend against this one, but for me I think I'll stick with DT and Fin until I find something else.

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Photo of AGoodStout
3.16/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Gavage
3.19/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: fairly clear yellowish orange in color sporting a spotty surface foam, even with a vigorous pour.

Smell: yeast, candy sweetness, and hints of pepper.

Taste: yeast is quite noticeable here. Pears, green grapes, hints of tart citrus, sweet sugar, mild bitterness, pepper, and touch of alcohol make up an average tatsting belgian styled tripel. Very dry overall. The flavor components just aren't tied together here.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp and dry at the start, smoooth and dry at the finish. Aftertaste is long on the candy sweetness and yeast tones.

Drinkability: so-so beer and a bit of a disappointment. You can pass on this one and not miss anything.

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Photo of DeFaz
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: This doesn't look much like a tripel. The head is relatively small, and the color is closer to a straw color (say, like a lager or pilsener) than a tripel. There is some lacing.

Smell: Yeast and alcohol. This didn't have that spice that I look for from tripels, and there wasn't complexity in the smell.

Taste: Yeah, there's not much going on here either. Candy sugar, yeast, alcohol, and some malt. The alcohol is not well concealed.

Mouthfeel: Again, the alcohol is not hidden too well. The carbonation is low for the style, and the beer is a tad thin.

Overall: This wasn't bad necessarily, but it was disappointing. I expected more from Left Hand. This just didn't have enough going on.

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Photo of IrishJames
3.24/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Straw color with slight haze. Thin head scatters quickly. No lace.

Smell: Not much to speak of. Slight malt aroma. No discernible hops. Trace of sweet candy.

Taste: As tripels go, sweetness is present here but the malts are allowed to carry their own weight. Not expected, but works fine. Alcohol is prominent.

Mouthfeel: Thin with mild carbonation.

Overall: Drinkable and good for summertime on the deck at sunset. Will not seek out this brew in the future, but not bad by any means.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.24/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with colorful vibrant label art and branded white/red pry-off pressure cap acquired at me local HEB Grocery and served into an Avery stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average given the brewery, whose milk stout I quite enjoy. 2013 Vintage. Best by: 05/20/16. 9.3% ABV according to my bottle/ "Enjoy at 45-50 degrees F in a goblet." , Reviewed as a tripel because it clearly identifies as such.

Served cold - straight from me fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a half finger wide head of white colour. Decent thickness. Subpar creaminess. Head retention is poor - about 40 seconds, unless you count the floater ring, which lingers maybe a minute longer. No lacing forms naturally, but I can get some to stick to the sides of the glass by tilting it.

Body colour is a transparent translucent yellow of high vibrance. No yeast particles are visible. It's lighter in colour than most beers I've seen in the style, and may be one of the lightest tripels I've ever seen.

Overall, there are no egregious flaws. It's not unique or special. I'm looking forward to trying it.

Sm: Hmm - surprisingly appealing, actually. Soft (maybe clove) honey, Belgian pale malts, clean barley, straw, herbal notes I can't quite place (actual herbs, not hop-derived herb notes) - maybe something in the mint family?, floral hops, clove, pear fruit, nectar, assorted vague orchard fruits, and cidery character. Plenty of sweetness here. Some spice.

No yeast character or alcohol is detectable. I'm surprised; even ~8% ABV (American-brewed) tripels often seem boozy.

Some might criticize it for seeming too cidery - or at least too redolent of apple juice - but I find it appealing, if nontraditional. A pleasant aroma of average strength for the style.

T/Mf: Orchard fruit: luscious orchard green and yellow apples along with accompanying cidery notes and esters. Hints of peach and pear. The body is refreshingly light and crisp on the palate, with clean smacky Belgian pale malts joining with spritzy crystal malts and sweet clove honey for an interesting mix. Has a kiss of white pepper as well as some clove, but I have trouble identifying the other spices here. Honeysuckle. Hints of lemon. Clean barley. A bit more acidic than I expected, but the effect is nice. As it warms, more of the clean high attenuation yeast begins to come through, evoking some banana but little else; I'm not convinced the yeast used was Belgian (or tripel, for that matter). Digging a bit deeper, I begin to trick myself I'm picking up some white grape grapeskin. Plenty of golden malts. It's certainly on the sweeter side; there's no real hop bitterness at all, and what modest hop character there is here is almost entirely floral, with some complementary fruity hops as well.

It has a warmth which is hardly noticeable, and which I'd call pleasant. I don't find any of the mint which I picked up in the aroma, and I think that's a good thing. There are no off-flavours.

In fairness, it's one of the more complex American brewed tripels I can remember having in quite some time. The dryness and refined crispness of a more intricate tripel is missing here, but the smooth wet mouthfeel here is just fine. It does dry towards the climax in a more traditional manner, which really helps the texture. It's highly carbonated; bottle conditioning would really help this. I like the cidery crispness even if it isn't quite up to par for a tripel.

The beer could use more subtlety. It's nicely balanced for how much is happening, but the best tripels definitely have a better balance. It's very cohesive, but not gestalt. An interesting build for a tripel which flirts with cider, Belgian pale ale, and even hefeweizen profiles.

Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour. Traditional Belgian & Trappist offerings certainly have more depth, but this is pretty decent for an American tripel.

Good presence on the palate for what it is. Nice body. Kind of refreshing. Texture suits the flavour profile nicely, but is by no means custom-tailored to the taste.

Not oily, creamy, astringent, harsh, boozy, gushed, or rough. Unrefreshing.

Dr: Quite drinkable for the high ABV, which is pretty decently hidden. It's not a world class tripel by any means, but it's pretty nice stuff for an American-brewed offering. I wouldn't get it again, but my meagre expectations were exceeded. I'll have to give Left Hand a bit more attention going forward. Maybe they aren't a one-trick pony. I wouldn't recommend it to friends explicitly, but as I'm from Colorado I'd probably tell local friends it's one of the better tripels in the state.


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Photo of ryho
3.24/5  rDev -13.8%

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St. Vrain Tripel from Left Hand Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.76 out of 5 with 263 ratings
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