Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu

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Ranked #13
Ranked #2,565
4.16 | pDev: 9.62%
Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
Reviews: 266 | Ratings: 520 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by jnjander:
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jnjander from Georgia

4/5  rDev -3.8%

Sep 29, 2012
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Mindcrime1000 from South Dakota

4.69/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 750 mL into a tulip...

This is one of the best-looking beers I've had, both in terms of "true to the style" and just nice to look at. Hazy (yeast) and shimmering gold, with a fast disappearing head, but extremely-persistent and ample lacing throughout the quaff.

The aromas are varied and extremely complex. I took several samples of the smell at the beginning and throughout and came away with something different each time. Green apple and honey are immediate, with peach, coriander, and white pepper in the background. Floral and yeast notes are just barely noticeable as well.

The flavor is a symphony of balance and subtlety. It is somewhat subdued, but still outstanding. Like the aroma, there is a lot going on here, and what is happening is all good. Fruity and sweet at the outset, but not overly so. Just the right amount of yeast for the style. Mandarin orange sweetness, green apple acidity, peppery alcohol notes, and phenols/spices all show up for the party. Other sweet notes include honey and pear. At the very end, just a kiss of hops to provide a little dryness.

The mouthfeel is simply spot on. The carbonation is excellent, without being "bubbly" and, combined with the alcohol, provides just the perfect amount of lift.

This is one of the best tripels I've ever had. There are so many things going on that one might expect it to be a muddled mess. But each note is discernable and describable. I had to travel 240 miles to get this 750 bottle and will be making the trip again soon. A must try.

Apr 23, 2017
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SIRIUS2 from North Carolina

4.85/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750ml into a chalice style glass

A: Hazy pale yellow tinted toward orange, with a very nice white foam head of small bubbles. Head retention was very good with thin layer of bubble remaining throughout the drink. Excellent lacing.

S: Nothing harsh; light smells of spice mixed with malts and something fruity in nature... not sure what, but it smells great!

T: Wonderful balance of malts, spices, and light hops. The flavors remain solid on the tongue and never diminish. The finish is at first a bit dry but fades to an interesting light malt finish with slight finish of the spices. Very tasty.

M&D: Mouthfeel is damn near perfect. The carbonation is light to medium with small bubbles which does nothing but enhance the flavors of the brew. There is nothing here that gives away the strength of this brew. It is so smooth and easy to drink that the effects sort of sneek up on you in a subtle enjoyable kind of way.

I'm a tripel guy and I love a good trappist ale. It was suggested to me that I try this brew with an open mind to see what I thought. Overall - Awesome! This is a very good representation of an abbey tripel. I loved it. If you are into abbey trips, you have to try this one!

Feb 27, 2008
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RoyalT from Ohio

4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Light but deep cloudy orange body with a very pretty head.

Smell – The traditional Tripel orange comes out at the nose. It is light; more like a tangerine than an orange. The spicing is also noticeable but light. The typical coriander and white pepper is spread evenly throughout the bouquet.

Taste – The beautiful spiced orange flavors comes out smooth and well-blended at the tongue. I can also pick up some grapefruit and a small yeast backbone. This is a wonderful example of the style.

Mouthfeel – Medium carbonation and body with just enough presence of alcohol to please the palate.

Drinkability – I enjoyed this ale very much. It is very smooth yet complex.

Oct 28, 2003
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BuckeyeNation from Iowa

4.16/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich amber with a hint of orange, a fine yeasty haze and sheets of Champagne-like bubbles. The head is absolutely phenomenal. It's polished ivory in color and is as whipped creamy as any I've seen in a while. It's also a chiseled, rocky masterpiece as it falls, depositing thick chunks of foam, not lace exactly, all over the glass.

It's a good tripel nose, not quite a great one. The focal point is golden orchard fruit with hoppy underpinnings, both floral and earthy, as well as a light sprinkling of spice. Alcohol is noticed, as well it might be at 9.0%, although it's complementary rather than abrasive. My hope is that it's as well-behaved on the palate as it is in the nose.

Val-Dieu Triple is good beer. It isn't as dizzyingly complex and as nuanced as some, nor is it as powerfully spicy and as assertive as others. That doesn't mean that it isn't just as good in its own way. There's a fair amount of pale malt, with sweetness easing ahead of bitterness during the first half of each mouthful. The flavor profile changes smoothly in mid-course so that bitter and spicy make more of a statement late. Brandy-soaked apricots and peaches hold the center as far as specific flavors.

Alcohol is more noticeable than in some tripels. However, it's so smooth and so comfortably warming that to ratchet it down would be to lessen the beer in my opinion. The brewery's website includes the phrase "strength and serenity!" to describe this beer. A more than apt choice of words, I'd say.

This may be the most thoroughly lace-encrusted glass that I've ever seen for a non-hoppy, high-ABV beer. The mouthfeel doesn't quite achieve silky, but it's supremely smooth and is several notches more full than medium. Despite the crazy amount of visible carbonation and the outstanding, persistent head, the beer is anything but overcarbonated in the mouth.

Val-Dieu (Valley of God) Triple is somewhat unheralded, but it still manages to holds its own with some of the better known tripels from the land of all good tripels, Belgium. Although it doesn't supplant my favorites, it's clearly a well-crafted beer that should be a source of pride to the brothers of Abbaye Val-Dieu. Its strength (and quality) has led to my serenity. I like this one.

Nov 14, 2005
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: A great Belgian looker, with a massive head and a clear goldenstraw color; with excellent retention, the lacing webbed the side of the glass

Smell: Honey, pear and banana, with a hint of pepper underneath

Taste: Wheat bread, honey and banana, up front, with a toffee character developing by mid-palate, when the white pepper and clove phenols perk it up a tone; nicely balanced in the finish, with a bit of booziness that doesn't overwhelm

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with buoyant carbonation

Overall: A rather different tripel, with a bit of the hefe thrown into the mix, but really enjoyable, particularly as it doesn't supercharge the sweetness or the fusel alcohol flavors

Apr 03, 2012
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

With the vast array of "Belgian-style" this and "Belgian-inspired" that; its refreshing to get back to basics with an authentic and time-honored taste that relies not on gimmicks nor reinvention, but a pure and simple ale done right.

Val Dieu Tripel jumps right out of the gate with bold fruit and supportive sweetness. Its bright floral aroma is mildly of perfume and honeysuckle while a crisp wafer-thin pilsner-type of sweetness smolders beneath.

Upon the tongue, its bracing effervescent springs to life the beer's fruity and spicy attitude. Lemons, oranges and apples balance against white pepper, coriander, mild cumin and its grassy hop additions. Champagne-like acidity keeps the palate refreshed and highly drinkable.

Finishing with a nod to hops and alcohol spiciness, its continued grass and hay flavors superscede any fruity-sweet upstarts, en route to an effervescent acidity and a quick aftertaste of peppercorn.

With a smidgen more sweetness and a barely heavier feel, Val Dieu's Tripel is nearly spot-on to most abbey versions. With all the parts to its taste coming together effortlessly, the recipe and brewer execution works to near perfection.

Jun 09, 2014
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wl0307 from England

4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BB 01/06/07, served lightly-chilled in a broad-rimmed goblet.

A: lightly cloudy, dark yellowish straw, with some orangey hints; coming with a white pillowy beer head, slowly settling to a thin "furry" carpet, leaving very tight sheets of lacing on the track... lively carbonated body.
S: juicy and cake-ish maltiness plus softly candy-sugary and mildly caramely (Munich?) malts prevail upfront; backed by deeper scents of Chinese green-bean paste, honey-drink, sweet lemony+orange-syrupy+grassy (Goldings+Hersbrucker) hoppyness, ginger+coriander, and a touch of chewy fruit-estery yeastiness... quite complex yet approachable and evolving all the time.
T: sweet lemon-cordial, chewy orangey hops, coriander+peppery-spiciness, followed by an assertive but rather light-bodied candyish and mildly grainy malts; leaving a sour-sweet citric-juicy and pheonolic flavour in the end... Although the flavour is a touch too sweet for my taste, the lingering, mildly zesty, tangy and semi-dryish touch does seem to balance the overall palate.
M&D: creamy texture and rather light-bodied for a 9.0%abv. The alc. strength hides very well, like other mellow yet robust Tripels, showing good signs that this is a really mature product with a good depth. Not terribly complex, but very enjoyable all the same~~

Jun 01, 2006
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Hoplomachus from Virginia

4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Nov 24, 2012
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allergictomacros from Canada

4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Hazy yellow/orange with good, sticky white head.

S - Intense apple and spicy aromas. A whiff of strong alcohol as well.

T/M - Big, round, complex flavours and a creamy mouthfeel. Buttery flavour and a lingering hop bitterness. A fleeting touch of tartness is present up from, but is quickly overwhelmed by a fruit, spice and a bitter finish.

D - Surprisingly light for the volume of flavour, and much more mellow than initially indicated by the nose.

Sep 03, 2006
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RollBounce from New York

4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Jan 18, 2014
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bigdeuce from Pennsylvania

4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am more of a fan of dubbels than tripels, but this is much better, IMO, than Val Dieu brune. Pours a nice golden color, with sediment in the glass. Smells of esthery fruits, maybe pears and corriander. Belgian candied sugar is evident too. Very smooth..Not much aftertaste, except for the fruit. No sourness, no bitterness. Great lacing! Very strong and deceptively so. A true keeper and an outstanding beer.

Nov 17, 2007
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valdieu2 from Maine

4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Oct 01, 2012
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matjack85 from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Aug 15, 2013
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Pugs78 from California

4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Jun 19, 2012
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UncleFlip from Alabama

4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light honey colour, ever so slightly hazy....absolutely glows when put up to the light. Nice white finger thick fluffly head, which goes away fairly quickly, leaving thick wet lace behind.

I get the aroma well before I even put my nose to the glass. Seems like this may be an intense sensory experience. Sticking my nose to the glass, I get s light spicy hint- but it's all about fruity smells- banana, peach, a bit of papaya, and some sour apple. Theres also a little hop underneath.

The flavour has a strong spicy top, with a pungent bottom that seems to have some grapefruit as well as some sort of licorice bits to it. Very woody and spicy on the finish. The alcohol is very present at the end. Very nice.

Mouthfeel has a low tight carbonation throughout. The feel of the liquid emerges mid to end, slightly thicker than you might imagine.

It would be a good session beer, I think- if you like doing that with higher gravity stuff. It might be a bit intense for some, but I'm quite fond of this one for an evening's work. :)

Be well

Aug 11, 2005
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redfox405 from California

4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mar 03, 2019
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DylanBrkhff from Netherlands

4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Jan 08, 2020
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semihobo from Michigan

2.06/5  rDev -50.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Best before end 15-01-09 on the bottle. 11.2 oz from a sample pack.

Foams a little upon popping the cap. Pours a light gold, cloudy body with a delicate, thin but evenly distributed head. It just occurs to me now that you can look at the bottom of the head by holding a beer up in the air, works pretty well in this chalice. Maybe I need to spend less time in the pool. As the beer is consumed, lacing is weak and the head has no staying power.

Smells both acidic and overly sweet. Can't pinpoint the spice but there is a prominent blend. Slightly chemical.

The taste is funky, which is not meant here as a compliment. Unrefined sweetness, with raw candi sugar and yeast byproducts that seem to marching to the beat of a different drummer. Minimal fruit, no clove, few of the delicacies one would expect for the style. Not lousy, but a little out of sorts. Slightly metallic finish.

Mouthfeel is slightly harsh on the finish, it would be nice to have lusher, softer carbonation.

Fairly weak within the style. Triples are great, and there are too many good ones to have a mediocre example. Below average for the style and very unimpressive.

May 11, 2008
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SocalKicks from California

4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Dec 11, 2012
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TPSReports from Alabama

4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The bottle has a date of 20/01/07. I assume this means drink before Jan. 20, 2007. Today is June 17, 2005.

Served at 50 degrees from an 11.2oz bottle. Poured into an orval chalice. Is there protocal for mixing beers with chalices? It would seem that I would have quite an expensive collections of glassware if I collected one glass per any event, maybe that is a better topic for the forum rather than my review.

The beer pours nicely with a bright white head forming quickly and disappearing leaving a lacy covering across the surface. It a nearly clear yellowish amber color. Tiny bubbles pass upwards through the liquid. Nearly microscopic particulates can be seen floating happily in the alcohol.

The smell is delicious, a bold critus aroma with a delicate hoppiness.

The first and second sips are devine. Plenty of cirtus taste here. A very nice tripel. The malt and hops are delicate adding to the drinkability of this beer.

The feel is solid, without being too chewy.

I will keep this in ample supply in my cellar.

Jun 18, 2005
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safaricook from Netherlands

3.84/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Blind Tasting Tripel Project of Fall 2015
L disappointing little white foam, murky pale orange
S phenols while it is colder then fruity mixture of apricot, banana and more and more pear, malt sweetness
T fruity, pears again, dry, some bitterness, phenolic, lingering, some band aid, a bit harsh, even some tartness to it, alcoholic sweetness
F plenty of carbonation, but still feels on the lower end of the style, medium body, quite substantial
O Great complex nose, the taste is complex but also a little harsh, drinkability could be better.

Aug 03, 2012
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jettjon from Florida

4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the caged cork bottle, decants with a satisfying “pop.” Very appealing golden-clear body with many bubbles making their way to he surface. Head is voluminous and slightly off white; fading at a moderate pace, it leaves behind a solid sheet of foam and very good, intricate lacing. Nose is typical tripel material: a hint of alcohol, coriander spice, and yeast. Taste is bold and again representative: a semi-sweet yeasty malt start fades to a quick jolt of alcohol and then fades into a sweeter-than-expected malt slide to a semi-bitter, well balanced finish. The sweet malt and hops balance was more evident to me on this tripel than on others I’ve tasted, possibly punctuated by the sweetness of the malt. Mouthfeel is good but not spectactular, a decent balance between watery and substantial. Drinkability is excellent despite the 9% ABV. The alcohol only peeks out occasionally, reminding you of its presence through a friendly warm glow.

This is an imminently enjoyable tripel, and I highly recommend it.

Sep 12, 2006
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biernack from Switzerland

4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apr 26, 2015
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qcitydarkstar from North Carolina

3.53/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chalice from a 750ml bottle.

My Val-Dieu Triple poured a light orange color that took a faint amber glow in the light gleaming with sediment. A monstrous, billowing two-inch head developed that settled unevenly with one side gradually rising as the other fell. The scent was lightly alcohol and nondescript.

Despite boasting a high ABV (9%), this ale was very light in flavor with hints of white grape, orange and nutmeg. Although this beer did not seem very carbonated, it had a very champagne-like sprite and sparkle. While refreshing, something was very off in the aftertaste, filling the back of the tongue with cupric and soap tastes.

Ultimately this ale proved refreshing in the same manner as a good saison, but a little bland. With the wealth of tripels that exist in the modern American beer market, I doubt I would purchase this again, but I encourage all to try and make up their own minds.

Dec 11, 2005
Triple from Brasserie de l'Abbaye du Val-Dieu
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 520 ratings