Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) | Brewery Ommegang

2,088 Reviews
Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel)

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States

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

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Reviews: 2,088 | Ratings: 6,392
Photo of Will46andbrew
4.8/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I'm very new to Belgian style beers and I don't know too much about them, but I know that I really like this one! It's a Quadrupel mixed with a cherry lambic. It is on the sweet side, but not too sweet, it's a nice blend.
This is one of my personal favorites and I usually have a 750ml in my fridge at all times. A great buy, if you get a chance, try it!

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Photo of LarryV
3.65/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep reddish color with good clarity. Smell is sweet, malty with hints of cherry. Flavor suffers from an excessive sweetness that is rather cloying. This was a 2006 bottling, so maybe it was still too young, but the flavors just didn't seem to meld together well.

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Photo of Freshie
4.48/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Three Philosophers Glass at the Publick House in Brookline, MA.

Dark amber color with cloudy texture. Beautiful head with effervescent lacing.

The smell is sweet and malty with warming alcohol phenols stinging the nose.

The taste is smooth. Fruity sweetness (Cherries) lends itself well to the warming alcohol in the aftertaste. This is a sipping brew, as the petite Three Philosophers glassware hints to. There are also some spicy herbal overtones to the taste, that become more apparent as you drink.

Very complex brew, but was enjoyable to drink. I was the DD when I drank this. It was my only drink, and it lasted me over an hour, and I still got a slight buzz. O so delicious on a cold December night.


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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 orfeu
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In October 2005 I purchased a couple mixed cases of 750 ml bottles of each of Ommegang's four "main" beers when I camped overnight at the Waffles and Puppets event. Most of those beers have since been drunk or given as gifts, but of those that remain there are three specimens of the 2005 bottling of Three Philosophers "Belgian Style Blend." This bottle has sat quietly with its Ommegang brethren since then, and now seems like a good time for a review. The bottle was opened at cellar temperature. A careful pour into a Three Philosophers bulb yields a slightly murky burnt-orange glowing brew with a steady, densely-bubbled light brown head. Slightly boozy, almost medicinal aromas of prunes and cherry juice, along with brown sugar and faint canned-pineapple notes. Very noticeable cherry flavor rings the edges of the first sip, surrounding a caramel-drizzled spiced poundcake center. Spicy alcohol prickliness subsides toward the finish. Clean, fruity (plums, cherries) flavors in the aftertaste. Slightly tart, almost vinous, but mostly a caramel-fruit melange. Vaguely funky "farmhouse" yeasty esters in the burps. Moderate alcohol slickness, medium body. The year and change this has spent sitting tight in the cellar has brought the Lindemans Kriek out from the shadows -- or maybe I've just had a difficult time discerning it in the past. As of now, this is drinking fine, but I've got two left to try for the next couple of years, and it should be interesting to see what additional time will do to this beer.

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Photo of Tawnos
4.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It pours in a reddish haze, and leaves a persistent head that doesn't seem to want to leave any time soon.

The smell is the best part of this beer. It's sweet and fruity, and within it holds everything I love about the belgian beer styles.

Taste is good, a bit of sweet tartness, almost no alcohol, which is surprising for such a strong brew.

Feels slightly tingly (beyond the normal carbonation), likely from the cherry. Overall, not unpleasant.

It's drinkable, but not something I'd do over an over. A decent beer to sip on for a while.

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Photo of monkeybutler
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark ruby-brown, with a 1 finger head, moderate lacing and steady carbonation.

The smell is fantastic: complex with notes of fruit, spice, yeast, malt, and even a twinge of caramel.

Taste is a bit too sweet from the cherry lambic, but also nicely crisp, with a nice malt backbone and a long tart finish. My one complaint is that it does not quite exhibit enough of the abbey yeast flavor profile to balance with the lambic.

Mouthfeel is thick and gummy, with some astringency from the cherries.

Drinkability: good not great. This beer puts the palate through the wringer.

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Photo of TheLiterati
3.03/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Lovely mahogany-hued ale with cherry lambic added, poured into a Duvel tulip.

Subtle, pleasant cherry aroma, with vanilla-oak undertones. Underlying presence of raisins and dates as well, which bouquet nicely as it warms.

I was afraid the cherry lambic would overwhelm but it doesn’t. This is a mostly malty ale with a fruity finish, though all in all, there’s nothing overly distinctive that I can say about the taste. In fact, as the label states, the sweet caramel malt and dark cherries do in fact “confound” my tongue – just not in the best way.

Smooth mouthfeel is achieved with a mild carbonation balanced with a nice creaminess.

Glad I had a chance to sample it. I might like to try this with a nice fruit tart or truffle some other time.

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Photo of GbVDave
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Loterbol tulip and a La Chouffe tulip.

A: Pours an opaque dark ruby brown. Huge head on initial pour that eventually calms down to a tiny skim of foam. Minimal lacing.

S: I detected notes of oak, vanilla, and black cherries.

T: Spiced plums, black cherry, brown sugar, toasted malt, and a slight orange rind-like bitterness round things out here.

M: Well rounded creamy-ness with a hoppy, spicy bitterness that adds great balance.

D: Quite drinkable. Best served slightly cooler than room temp.

Interesting blend of two completely different styles of Belgian beer.

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Photo of longarm
4.6/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2006 edition, reviewed in December 2006:

Appearance: Solid carbonation with decent lacing. Excellent dissolved carbonation. 2 hours after popping the cork, it still pours a solid head. Deep amber color with a hint of rose.

Aroma: Initial hint of cherry followed with resemblances of cotton candy. LET IT WARM!!!! As it warms, more aromas become apparent, including toffee, chocolate and hints of port.

Flavor: On a most basic assessment, cherry lambic flavor mixes with toasted malt. Inexplicable complexity and esters abound. Somewhat tart...perhaps from cherries or plums. Even something resembling peach or apricot occasionally appears as a complement. This is a delightful and complex beer. Little spice, negligible hops...the masterful balance of malt, fruitlike flavors and esters is unbelievable.

Mouthfeel: Slightly acidic and well balanced, smooth, coats well but isn't cloying. Enticing carbonation but not explosive. The finish starts sweet and finishes moderately dry. I wish I had cheesecake with a fruit compote to work with this.

Drinkability: Drinkability is unmatched. This beer holds its own exceptionally well, but it would mix well with many desserts.

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Photo of srrn
4.82/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml caged corked bottle.

A deep ruby brownish color with the obligatory 'funky' smell of a Belgian style ale, with cherries, plums and a bit of raisins and spice.

A bit of fizz on the mouthfeel and nice lacing on the glass.

Taste of spice cake, raisins and plums, cherries more in the aftertaste. Slight bitterness in the finish too. If you can go a bit between sips this beer leaves a wonderful taste in the mouth for some time. Smells so good too.

Highly reccommended, this is one of my desert island beers.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
4.6/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to JasonA for this 2005 vintage

A: So thick light can't pass thru it. Color is like dark maple syrup. Head is a nice roasted marshmallow color made up of medium sized bubbles. The head has fallen to what I can only compare to what pond scum looks like (and I mean that in a good way)! Various streams of bubbles raise to the surface from the depths of the glass.

S: Smores, cherry, caramel, banana, some vanilla and butterscotch.

T: Begins like a refined cordial; dried cherry, vanilla and caramel are the front runners. From there I get sort of a coffee cake with underlying powdered cocoa. Some marshmallow in there with cherry cream candy moments. Finishes with some butterscotch and a tad of bitterness with evident alcohol on the tip of the tongue.

M: Full body and smooth with a bit of carbo fluff.

D: I think I like this beer more fresh opposed to aged. The cherry isn't as apparent but it does get more caramel personality. Regardless, delicious.

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Photo of techdiver
4.97/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy deep crimson with modest head that dissipates quickly.

Malt and cherries to the nose.

Taste is complex, seems every taste brings a little something different out. All smooth, initial taste brings plums, raisins and dates to mind. Subsequent tastes show more of the malt and cherry. The cherry never is overpowering.

Fairly full-bodied and well carbonated, a marvelous brew.

So drinkable, the alcohol is well hidden; except for the buzz. One 750ml and I'm not driving a firetruck anywhere. Opened this now to celebrate being packed and ready for a cruise. Sailing tomorrow for Key West and points south.

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Photo of DaveFL1976
4.48/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This has been sitting in my fridge for several weeks. It began to look lonely, so I decided to liberate the brew.

The body really isn't much to look at. It's nice... a muddy brown beer with a reddish hue when held to the light. But the head... wow! Great head on this beer. Thick, foamy and long lasting.

The smell is sweet and fruity with a bit of tartness and banana in the background.

Taste is really unique. The beginning is a great sweet belgian dubble, then a transition into a sour lambic. The transition is extremely smooth. Much smoother than expected. This is a really fine tasting brew. For 9.8%, the alcohol is superbly hidden. I'm tempted to give this thing a 5 for taste. Should I? (gulp)
5 it is!

Mouthfeel is right where it should be. Fairly highly carbonated with a bit of bite at the end, but a nice heavy mouthfeel that supports that bite.

This is a really nice beer. The only thing that slows down drinkability is the alcohol percentage and the huge bottle!

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Photo of geetlord
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a coppery amber in color with a very large foamy head that remained for quite a while.
The aroma carried spices, some alcohol, and cherries.
The flavor was very complex, flavors changed rapidly and smoothly from one to the next making it dificult for me to give specific descriptions of each. I tasted spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves), dark molasses and brown sugar, some hints of tart citrus. On top of this the blended cherry lambic was very prominent adding sweet cherries, and some red wine like qualities to taste. The finish very dry and carries a bit of an alcohol kick.
I enjoyed the flavors and complexities of this beer a lot, however the lambic blending added a slightly disjoint set of flavors, that while good, would have been much better had they blended better.

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Photo of IdentityAles
3.26/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Aroma of sweet malt, coco bitterness, some spice and clove hints from the yeast and a tart cherry fruitiness. A firm, lasting, off white head tops the brown body interlaced with red highlights. Malty sweetness up front, followed by cherry cough syrup, and a hint of mustiness. Left a candy coating in my mouth. A interesting beer... would like to see more sourness and less sweetness though.

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Photo of Nesued
4.62/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, no freshness date however a collar label describes this as "Brewed 2005". Should store nicely.

Appearance - Ruddy brown/amber color. Clear to the view. Fine carbonation. Outstanding tan/off-white lacing follows a well developed head. Remaining head is a ring and thin layer.

Smell - Malty aroma is brighted with the cherry presence. Nice aroma without the alcohol overtones as many 9%'s have.

Taste - Mellow yet tart taste. The malt is well positioned from the first sip with the cherry giving an added bite. A bit of a bitter presence that may be both the cherry and the malt components. The alcohol makes it's presence known in a big way.

Mouthfeel - What a dense complex brew. My palate is coated after a good long drag on this beer. Not as much a heavy, but a dense feel.

Drinkability - As with most Belgian and Belgian-styles this bad boy is for sipping. Anyone who thinks they can drink several of these needs to drink cheaper beer for the buzz they are looking for! This is a well presented Quadrupel without suffering from the oft-times overbearing alcohol presence. One of my favorates in the style.

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Photo of jwc215
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle

Pours deeep reddish-brown with ruby highlights. The thick, creamy head descends to a lasting cover.

The smell is of cherry and sweet malt. A pleasant aroma.

A sweet brown sugar coats a barley breadiness and an underlying cherry taste. Some spiciness is present, but not sharp. The sweetness is offset by a touch of tartness. A warming alcohol adds to the mild spiciness. Medium to full-bodied.

Rich and complex, it's very smooth.

This is a wonderful, unique brew. The mixture of barley malt and cherry lambic makes this one interesting and delicious. As the bottle states, this one is better to have when at room temperature or slightly chilled. It's a very nice occassional "sipping" brew.

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Photo of JasonA
3.88/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml brewed 2005 purchased fromCorridor Liquors in Laurel MD.

Pours a slightly cloudy reddish (almost cherry) copper. Little head which dissapates quickly. Some lacing, I expected much more. Head leaves and islands while sitting

Smells ligth barley, barely some malts. Very surprised no alcohol smell for 9.8abv. Also expected more smells at this point.

I am no quad expert, so bear with me on the taste. Taste some non-sweet dried fruit like curant or maybe date. Maybe oak and somewhat dry. Also not what I expected.

Mouthfeel is good, but I guess my expectations were much higher for this brew. Medium carbonation in the mouth, but much very dry and almost oak tasting (like in chard wine). Alcohol bite early in the mouth, but goes away quick with dryness.

I am worried about this bottle. I am hoping this was a bad bottle, its the first from this place. I guess I was expecting something different. Since it is so close, I am going to definately try again.

Let me finish with this thought: This beer reminds me of wine. A very dry chard with hops and barley. Not a barley wine, not that sweet. I would like to revisit this thought on another bottle.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer pours a dark ruby brownish color. With a half inch head that has good retention. Beer looks good just in the glass.
It has a sort of a "wine" smell to the nose. There is some fruity undertones with the obvious representation of alcohol.
Taste is incredibly creamy and smooth with a good amount of carbonation in the mouthfeel.
There is a good amount of cherry coming out midway through the taste. This is a really good beer. The alcohol was quite apparent in the nose, but nowhere to be found in the taste. Absolutely no burn.
This is a fine offering from Brewery Ommegang and at a price point that makes it a very easy buying decision.
If you have access to this beer, it is a must try. This will be a regular in my beer rotation.

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Photo of grub
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got this one in a recent trade with Aprilluvsbeer. thanks april!

pours a slightly hazy deep red colour with a half inch or fluffy dark yellow head. drops to a ring around the glass.

aroma is great. toffee malt. nice sourness. fruity, with cherry and raspberry notes.

taste is interesting. bitterness is higher than i expected. nice tartness and sourness. warmth on the way down, but otherwise the alcohol isn't really noticeable. even better as it warms. caramel malt. subtle cherry and raspberry. bittersweet chocolate.

mouthfeel is good. fairly full bodied with a nice slightly high carbonation level.

drinkability is good. the alcohol is hidden well and it's interesting and tasty. very enjoyable.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.88/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy reddish brown with a moderate head that sticks around but leaves no lacing.

Smellis complex and winey, but with a sharp stewed sour cherry smell in the background. This isn't unpleasant, but it could be more well integrated.

Taste is better, and more balanced. Here the fruit is more subtle and doesn't predominate. Instead you have a nice layered malt profile with sweet sour underpinning of cherry and some slight hops to give a little spiciness.

Mouthfeel is also quite balanced somewhat crisp, somewhat creamy, nice carbonation level.

Quite drinkable- refreshing, but just complicated enough to keep your interest.

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Photo of EPseja
3.44/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 12oz bottle at just below cellar temperature in a Chimay chalice. Tasting conducted slowly to allow the temperature to rise even more.

A - A hazy, golden burnt orange color at the start turns to a glass with the color of a light prune juice -- completely opaque. Head is light coffee colored and modest. Lacing is present, but average.

S - Dark fruits like figs, raisins and prunes along with the smell of wet newspaper and alcohol. Big, caramel maltiness. Raw candy sugar. Slight vanilla and maple. The smell of cherries is buried way in the back, and just barely noticeable.

T - Well balanced dark cherry and fig-newton sweetness is immediately offset by a fairly strong alcohol kick that runs beside the tart yeast. I also perceive a slight, unidentifiable spice note that might be a derivitave of the added cherry lambic. Medium dryness in the swallow and finish.

M - Creamy on the way in, turning quite tingly on the tip of the tongue, but without over-expansion. Chewy in the mouth. Swallow is throat filling and dense.

D - A very tasty quad indeed, but I just don't see where the cherries come in. Perhaps this is a good thing, however, since an overtly cherry smack in the face would be an affront to the style. A pleasure to drink, and satisfying nonetheless!

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Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 vintage, poured into an oversized wine glass.

A - Burgundy-colored, with a formidable head that dissipates into a light cake on the surface.

S - Spicy/sweet alcohol, chocolate, and cherries of course. Kind of reminds me of those alcoholic chocolate covered cherries (go figure).

T - Exceptionally mellow and smooth, like a nice cognac. The cherry lambic is pretty subdued in this bottle; it's there in the background, adding a bit of tart sourness, but it's blended evenly with flavors of dark chocolate, brown sugar and vanilla. I'm curious to see if the kriek is more prominent in fresher bottles. I would guess that aging mellows out the lambic and blends the flavors a bit.

M - On the fuller side of medium-bodied. The long-lasting head gives it some creaminess. This is a rich, heavy, filling beer.

D - Surprisingly good considering how rich and alcoholic it is, largely thanks to the rather mellow flavor.

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Photo of trevorwideman
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to demcorhip for the amazing bunch of brews he brought for me! Included were 2 of these. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a dark translucent ruby colour with lots of sediment. Healthy, reddish-coloured 1/2 inch head that recedes slowly to 1/8 inch with a nice lacing and mild carbonation. Nose is quite sweet with hints of cherry, plum, port, chocolate, molasses, and mild alcohol sending it straight to the brain. Intense!

Taste is immediately alcoholic with the sourish cherry flavour coming in just behind. This is a little more tart than I thought it would be, but I like it. The cherries give way to a mild chocolate sweetness, some fruitcake flavour. Figs, plums, blackberries all make an appearance, along with a hint of coriander. Mild yeastiness in here as well. There's a multitude of complexities to this beer, very impressive. Mouthfeel is quite creamy, and it leaves the palate a little sticky. Carbonation is medium and dances the flavours around the palate just enough. Drinkable is more like sippable as this is one hefty brew, and I could keep sipping this all night. Not more than two though!

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Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (Quadrupel) from Brewery Ommegang
4.12 out of 5 based on 6,392 ratings.
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