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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) | Brewery Ommegang

2,059 Reviews
Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States | website

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-23-2002

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,059 | Ratings: 6,257
Photo of EvilKeith
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml brown bottle corked and wired- brewed in 2005

Pours into the snifter a hazy garnet-brown color, deep plum in color when held to the light. Head started as a half finger of biege tiny bubbles, fades to a wispy cap with a halo ring around the glass. Lace was spotty.

Smell is sweet malts with plenty of fruity esters, raisin, apricot, and faintly earthy. Alcohol is well hidden from the nose.

Taste starts faintly sweet, malts, yeast, a cranberry-like tartness and alcohol.

A wine-like mouthfeel. Medium bodied.

It must be drinkable. I finished a 750ml during this review.

Evil Keith
June 12, 2006

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Photo of 99bottles
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm somewhat torn about this beer. On one hand, I like the idea of a flavored quad, and cherry provides a good foil to the otherwise bruising power of such a malty monster. I don't really like the idea that this is essentially a quadruple and cherry flavoring black-and-tan. I'd rather see a direct product, with the fruit right in the fermenter. I also think the sweetness of the cherry lambic used (Lindemans?) detracts from the flavor. If anything, this quad needed a sour cherry. In any case, the deep brown body with ruby edges is appealing. Low carbonation. Smells of sweet figs, dates, and chocolate covered cherries. Main flavors are the same, with an unexpected viscosity (somewhat thin) and some transparent alcohol slickness. I think this could be tinkered with and improved upon. As it stands, I think it's just an average offering. Bottled versions may have more promise.

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Photo of fjordhook
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a dark brownish color that fades to a red at the bottom. I was surprised that the body was so clear considering the color was so dark. I could definitely see my fingers clearly through the glass. It smelled exactly the way it should, a nice strong ale with hints of cherries. The taste was reciprocated but the cherries definitely added a nice flavor to the ale. My only problem is for me it tasted a little... well the only way I can describe it is watery. Other than that I thought this beer was great, it felt good in the mouth and even with a high ABV I felt it was more drinkable than other strong ales.

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Photo of Shikitohno
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This ale from Ommegang strikes me as there more subdued offering, although that isn't a bad thing. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a glass, it produces a thick head. Very dark red in colour, almost opaque when held up to a light. It states on the label that it's a blend of a traditional ale and cherry ale (I believe it's 96%:4%), and this shows.

The cherry scent lingers there, along with a smell somewhat akin to fragrant wood. Unlike the other Ommegang ales I've had, this one has a suitably simple taste, not as complex as the Abbey Ale or Rare Vos. Initially, it tastes like a normal ale, but after swallowing the cherry flavour comes out in full force. One thing my friends and I agree on (although I'm not sure Ommegang would want people going around saying this) is that this and the Abbey Ale have the most delicious beer burps. What I mean is, it doesn't taste absolutely vile as many brews do (Guinness comes to mind), but sort of tastes like the beer.

This ale doesn't strike as being as heavy as the others produced by Ommegang, but it does have a kick. Unfortunately, it's between $8-$9/bottle around here, so I reserve this one for occaisional purchases. Still, a fairly good ale.

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Photo of CoolJosh
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 4 finger head that dissolves to 1 finger very quickly. Hazy nectar brown, with no light coming through

S Brown Sugar, some apricot, lots of cherries, peaches, very fruity and sweet.

T Very tart all around. Smooth start, fruits kick in with cherry being the most prominent. The apricot and peaches come through but very subtly. Kind of bite to it, but not in a pleasing way.

All in all, I really can't recommend this beer. I didn't enjoy it very much from the get go do to its lack of smoothness and semi tart flavors. I really felt as though it was being forced down half way through.

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Photo of kwjd
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a amber-brown colour that starts off with a lot of head, but it quickly dissipates without any lacing. Smell is cherry, plum, raisin and faint Belgian yeast. Taste is a bit tart. Has the cherry that this beer advertises, but not enough of everything else I'd expect in a quad. Carbonation level is nice. A tad boozy, but I still had no trouble finishing my half of this bottle.

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Photo of argock
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 750mL bottle into a oversized wine glass. 2011 on sticker on bottle neck. Sampled courtesy of good friend Nate.

A: Dusty chestnut brown with skimpy cap of off-white head that leaves only bits of lace.

S: Chocolate, dark malt with fruity tones like fig, currant, and raisin, and solid yeast character. I don't get much if any cherry aside from some acidic tartness.

T: The flavor is a little raw with a lot of alcohol blasting through but receding to figgy dark malt with some cookie-ish sweetness countered smartly with the tartness of the cherries. The yeast character is blended in just enough to add more complexity. I would like this more if it was less boozy, which makes me excited to try the cellared bottles I have.

M: The tart dry mouthfeel is excellently done and helps this drink a bit lighter than the ~10%. The carbonation is lively as it should be which also improves drinkability.

O: I liked this beer but I think I'll like the cellared version even more. Planning to crack the 2008 without delay.

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Photo of brewskifan55
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter

Appearance: opaque, amber; 1 finger head that dissipates; decent lacing

Smell: heavy cherries; funky Belgian fruity goodness.

Taste: cherries dominate; figs, raisins, Belgian yeast. Alcohol creeps in. Chewy finish.

Mouthfeel: heavy; sits on the tongue and carbonates like a bubble factory.

Overall: smooth, warming. A great dessert beer. Those 3 philosophers really put their heads together for this sublime taste.

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Photo of microbrew52
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a hazy orange and brown. Once out of the glass, the head is not billowy but sticks around till the end. It has a sour cherry smell from the lambic that is used with a little chocolate mixed in. I pick up a malt, bread, chocolate, cherry, and caramel. It has a nice long finish.

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Photo of cdizinno
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml brown magnum. PKG ON 08/06/09 and BEST BY 08/2014.

A: Mahogany brownish-red with light tan head. Almost blood red when held to a light. Medium lacing.

S: Light medicinal/herbal/licorice in the aroma. Heavy malt sweetness.

T&M: Smooth within a full body. Mild cherry, but heavy licorice up front to an ending that is bitter cherry and alcohol. Thick sweetness of dark malts, nothing roasted. Bitter phenols balance well with the hops. Very herbal.

Very complex. I usually love cherry flavors, but this one is kind of odd. If you like dark belgian styles, this one may be for you.

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Photo of rand
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From bottle to Duvel tulip glass

A: The pour creates a huge, foamy, two inch head, which is slow to recede, while the beer displays a beautiful dark amber-red color. Surprisingly little lacing traces the glass.

S: Fruity esters are noticed first, ripe cherries and plums. Plenty of alcohol burn, the volatiles carry grainy malts and an assortment of other scents, banana peel, leather, bubble gum.

T: Ripe fruity esters up front, as the cherry notes bash up against the phenolic undertone. A touch of hop bitterness balances the sweet, fruity nuances. It's layered and complex, but more singular in flavor than I expected. The alcohol bite is there throughout the sip and helps to dry the palate.

M: Rich and creamy. Really smooth, as the carbonation nicely rinses the palate between each sip.

I could name a few Quads I like better, but Three Philosophers has a unique and trademark flavor. It tastes distinctly Belgian, but unlike many US attempts at this style, it doesn't just taste like a "Quad". And for such a young brewery, this ale might as well come from a recipe passed down for 200 years. A great holiday sipper - I rarely bitch about weather, but it's in the freaking 30's in San Diego right now - this is hitting the spot.

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Photo of TXTider
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Serving in a snifter gave a half finger head which rapidy dissipates. It was tobacco colored with some deep reds showing in the light.

S - Sweet, molasses, dark fruit maybe plums or cherry

T - malt, dark fruit, light alcohol, molasses

M - moderate carbonation with a full but well balanced character

O - This beer really grew on me as I got through it. I'll definitely be drinking this again with some holiday meals.

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Photo of jhu1995
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Brewed in 2005, caged cork bottle.

Was given this one as a gift and could not wait to try, so I opened it up and gave it a whirl. I absolutely loved the color, a beautiful dark red, cherry wood color that was very crisp and clear. Outstanding. A sweet cherry aroma that was very subtle and smooth. Also noticed a slight medicinal smell, but did not think it was very overpowering or consuming. Taste was a bit rough, and would probably be better with a year of aging. Cherry taste was very noticeable and was quite interesting since it did not have the lambic-like tartness. I would purchase this one and probably let it age a year or two to smooth out some of the rough edges and let some of the malt characters come though. Overall, a very interesting and original beer that I would recommend.

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Photo of ewpgolf2
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 355 ml. bottle into a fishbowl chalice. This Qaud presents itself w/ a deep ruby hue and off-white foamy head that settles quickly to a 1/8" film. You get a waft of sweet fruit compote followed by a hint of the booze. first impression w/ taste was that of sugared caramel-like well-done toast with butter and sugar on it-less the cinnamon. Throughout the rest, you get fruit teasings (not necessarily the 2% added cherries though?) This finishes strong; and as usual, you get more alcohol towards the end. The best part about this brew is how well the mouthfeel adds to the drinkability. The aftertaste keeps you wanting more-even more than the taste itself! This can get syrupy after a few but doesn't sit heavy. The 9.8% ABV is a sneaker so watch out. I would have liked this to offer a little more on the front end but overall, I enjoyed just drinking this one!

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Photo of sevopie
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Thick muddy brown with faint hints of red, light brown head thats somewhat rocky.

Smell - Dark roasted malts with some brown sugar smells, and faint fruity aromas.

Taste - The malts take over here, caramel and chocolate notable. The lambic barely shows its head on the finish with a slight tart. A few spices mull around as well, namely cinnamon and ginger, as well as the alcohol showing its head on the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body with a moderately light amount of carbonation for a Belgian-style brew.

Drinkability - This won't be a staple as something doesn't quite sit right, but its definitely tasty. Bottle looks like a one and done though.

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Photo of q33jeff
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

** 02/12/2012
On Tap at Jo-Jo's Tavern, Hamilton, NJ.
Cherry is prominentDark Reddish brown, but opaque. Ruby glow in light.Sour cherry goes well with the dark ale. A little bitter, but in a good way, tasty.good carbonation.

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Photo of birdyone
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A creamy hazel brown. Nice head. Very opaque. How I think a good beer should look.

Fruity and warm aroma. Very inviting.

Taste is better than some Belgian Quads I've had, but not the best. The best ones were ones I had on tap, had too many of, and can't remember the names of. . . I've had this beer cellared for about 2 years and that was really good. Fruity notes, which are typical to the style.

It's very smooth for a 9.8% beer.

Drinkability suffers from price, and a little from alcohol content. I enjoy Belgian Quads, but their high alcohol and smooth taste are a deadly combination. . . Best part about this beer is the availability.

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Photo of Jmoore50
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The last beer of the Belgian tasting night with myself. This was the last beer of the night, and by far the best. This is a 2008 Vintage. The first thing that I thought of when I tasted this was that it would be delicious as a sour. Just at some Brett, Pedio and Lacto and this could be amazing.

The appearance is dark amber with lighter edges. It has a gradient of dark to lighter ambers which is pretty. The head has a really nasty tan-green color that is really disturbing. It doesn't last long and turns into a few bubbles hanging on to the sides of the glass. No lacing.

The smell is faint, but what is there is good. Cherries is a big one, and with this being two years old that is impressive. Yeasts are very strong, as well as other fruits like peaches and apricot.

The tastes in this one are pleasant, and after being two years old I believe some tastes have faded and given way for the dominant tastes. Cherries, strong grassy yeasts, caramel malts, and peaches. This thing is pretty tasty.

The mouthfeel is carbonated aggressively, but it has died down enough for it to just push the flavors out perfectly. Still not really thick on the palate as I would like it to be. Maybe a little higher gravity would do this thing wonders. The cherries and fruits bring a great sweetness to it. This is a good brew that I would buy again. Granted I bought the 2008 version, and it has been aging in the dark parts of a fridge for two years, I still would buy another. I enjoyed this.


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Photo of Halcyondays
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle, 2008 vintage,

A: Pours red-brown with a solid off-white head with excellent retention, some lacing.

S: A lot of sweet molasses with a hint of cherry.

T: Nice light brown sugar mixed with a lot a dark malt. The kriek, while being only 2% of the beer plays a more substantial role, adding a bit of fruit and medicinal character.

M: Mouthfeel is a bit on the light side for a close to 10% ale, off-dry finish, not bad.

D: Another quality ale and blend from the fellows at Ommegang, I wish it wasn't so pricey, it's good stuff. One of the very first beers I ever had, back in '05 I had it without knowing what it was and it really opened my eyes up to Belgian styles along with Orval, so I'm very thankful.

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Photo of alexgash
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Popped off the cap and immediately smelled that Ommegang smell. Pours a dark, russet brown. Light doesn't penetrate. Head is big and creamy and tan with a hint of red. Smellwise...I'm picking up dark cherries, oak, leather, alcohol, and yeast. Not overly aromatic, but nice and vinous. Dark, rummy fruits kick off the palate. Cherries, raisins, maybe plums in there. Slightly sweet, but slightly tart. Alcohol hits mid-palate, along with some leather, and a little oak. Bitterness backs its way in, but its a very herbal, tangy, and almost medicinal bitterness. Yeast is notieceable throughout. The finish has a tart apple taste to it. Warming. Full-bodied, but with a rather fluffy mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little on the "too much" side. Overall, a decent beer, but not my favorite Ommegang product.

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Photo of aleckpa
3.75/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured into my Chimay chalice.

A- Murky brown, like a dark iced-tea. slight head at first, looks like egg shell white. goes away shortly, and leaves a nice lacing throughout.

S- I smell raisins, figs, and a whiff of a granny smith green apple.

T- Sweet matly flavors. I taste raisins, sugar, caramel, with alcohol. It's not overwhelmingly sweet, however.

M- Creamy and full. Lot's of carbonation that tingles the tongue and throat. But, very very smooth.

O- I was expecting this to be sweeter and more distinct flavors. However, this wasn't the case, in my opinion. It isn't as sweet as say, Rochefort 10. It's a good beer in the end.

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

2004 release acquired with the help of howl1309, so a big "Thank You" goes out him. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark reddish brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of cherries, caramel, brown sugar, some spice, roasted malts & Belgian yeast.

T: The taste likewise has a strong burst of sour cherries that is tempered by the sweetness of caramel & brown sugar. There's a good Belgian yeast background and a hearty malt character. The hops presence is very mild as to be expected any beer that's 5-years-old and particularly in this style. The after-taste is slightly sour.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: Flavorful, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, it's a good high-powered Belgian that adds the tartness of a lambic. Five years might have been a little too long for this one, but it's still worth drinking for a long time.

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

Appearance: deep auburn, quite hazy, layer of light tan spongey foam that flattens to a crown, OK head retention

Aroma: dark caramel malt, sour dough bread, cooked cherries, alcohol, almagnac

Flavor: dry maltiness with a mellow background of cooked cherries; cork, yeast, almond, caramel, peppery alcohol; sharp bitterness at the back of the tongue; finishes dryish with a caramel/cherry/alcoholic aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, zesty carbonation, alcohol warmth

Other comments: A nice idea for Ommegang to blend one of their "Belgian-style" beers with a true Belgian beer: cherry kriek. The result is a comforting, warming, flavorful concoction. Reminds me a bit of Rare Vos from the cafe of the same name in Schepdaal, Belgium.

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Photo of beerbully
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Poured into snifter from bomber

A-dark amber with reddish hue. big off white head thick clinging lacing (4.0)

S-dark sugars, molasses, raisins, (3.75)

T-sweet and boozy. flavors of molasses, dark cherries, figs, raisins, and some burning booze (3.75)

M-some carbonation, full bodied, (3.75)

O-not one of my preferred styles as it is a bit too sweet for me with a boozy punch. The sweetness lingers which makes it less drinkable for my tastes. (3.75)

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Photo of dabarton
3.75/5  rDev -9%

While good, I was indisputably disappointed by this beer because of how substantial the hype is. Dark, rich, and smooth with a slight alcohol burn and beautiful presentation, this beer is unmistakably a fine piece of craftsmanship. However, to my taste it was not complex enough to be world class in this style.

I also should note that my rating reflects my preference for dark, malty beers with minimal hop character. Three philosophers finished too hoppy for me to buy it again.

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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
92 out of 100 based on 2,059 ratings.
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