Trappist Achel 8° Blond | Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

749 Ratings
Trappist Achel 8° BlondTrappist Achel 8° Blond

Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-06-2002

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Ratings: 749 |  Reviews: 415
Photo of srandycarter
4.08/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear honey, huge cottony head, slow to leave.

S - Flowery perfume, little juicy fruit and something like crushed aspirin.

T - Wow, very near smell. Big flavors, lots of fruit and flowered flavors, Belgian yeast taste very apparent, and that chalky aspirin definitely in the finish.

M - Light to medium body, tons of carbonation, maybe too much. Finish nice, maybe a little hard on the aspirin in the end.

D - I like it, could have a few.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. bottle, glad to see Achel back on the shelves after too long an absence, into my Orval chalice,

A: Pours a burnt ochre with a pillowy big Belgian head, lots of lace. Impressive.

S: Strangely I got a weird brown rice note immediately. But that soon transitions to a more classic nose, fairly hoppy with hints of iron minerals and pasta.

T: Substantially a hoppier beer than its Trappist counterpart Westmalle, I think it could be mistaken for a Belgian IPA in a blind tasting. Great earthy hay-like hop notes, some spiciness and hints of orange zest on the back end. The minerality I noted in the nose is here but much more understated. Nice.

M: Just a tad overcarbonated in the beginning, but I can get past that. Very dry, smooth and frothy which I enjoyed.

D: The Trappists know what they're doing when it comes to beer and the Achel Blond is no exception. Perhaps the youthfulness of the brewery is evident in it's agressive hoppiness, but that's fine by me. A must try.

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Photo of Chizoad
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale straw with a hugely fluffy head that just won't quit. A malty, slightly alcohol nose that improves with warming.

Big banana here. I rarely pick up that taste but this one was pretty prominent. Nice balancing bitterness throughout the drink. Not all that deep of a flavor but it's a good one.

Tight bubbles and medium-light body that goes down nicely.

Far too expensive for the quality of the beer, but I'm glad I tried it. Good tripel all in all.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.71/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours an apple juice looking liquied with tons of thin bubbly slightly off white head, tons of it.

S-the nose brings a ton of green apple with an underlying yeast aroma, a fair amount of fruity phenols with a touch of metallic phenols, the way back adds some peppery spice that tickles the nose.

T-the taste is similar, lots of yeast, slightly minerally, the green apple takes over, fruity esters, a fair bit of white pepper in the back.

M-smooth feel, medium body, somewhat syrupy, tons of carbonation and prickly on the back of the throat.

D-this is lively and carbonated in the throat with some interestingly balanced flavors, plenty of yeast, not perfect, lots of ruit qualities with a decent spice in the back.

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Photo of eclaycamp
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

11.2 ounce bottle. Pour a vivid tangerine orange, with a nicely constructed head rising roughly a half inch. Some light carbonation is present from the bottom of the glass, though it doesn't look overly so. Interesting smell with a touch of sourness at the outset. Fruit and spice is there too, golden raisins and peppery cloves. The first thing you notice when tasting the beer is the mouthfeel. It's a contradiction. It's at once effervescent yet creamy, light yet heavy. Really incredible. The actual taste is a flavor explosion, with just a ton of different things going on. The light sourness carries over to the taste, with some sour apple notes that belie a sweet orange marmalade finish. In the middle there's a really nice light caramel sweetness going on, helping to cleverly mask the high ABV. This is really a very well constructed Belgian blonde, one of the best examples of the style that I've had. I could easily drink a couple of these and not complain at all.

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Photo of nectar14
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 375 mL bottle provided by the Greff's (of Arbor Brewing, Ann Arbor, MI), for a great in-home tasting.

A: Lovely golden color, piling up a 1 finger head. Somewhat luminescent. Good streams of bubbles.

S: Caramel, candy sugar, a bit of lemon/apple, and belgian yeast notes. Just a hint of bread/biscuit also.

T: Gold fruit, caramel, candy. Broad flavors.

M: Flavorful but medium bodied and not syrupy. Carbonation drives it along and keeps it light-ish.

D: For drinking slowly. Not a guzzler. Easy going, though.

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Photo of ericj551
4.31/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Trappist Achel 8° pours a clear gold with the most beautiful fluffy head that lingers with a thick whipped cream texture. The aroma is sweet pale malt and some spicy yeast character. Sweet caramel and estery malt is upfront in the flavor. The estery sweetness fades leaving the finish dry and phenolic. There is some alcohol, but it is fairly mild. Simple, but delicious, it seems that Achel is less hyped but equal to the other Trappists.

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Photo of Patrick999
4.46/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Westmalle chalice. Wow, this has a lot of foam. It didn't gush, but damn. I'm trying to pour slowly, but still. This head is lumpy and stays around forever. You can get a milk mustache with this stuff. Clear-ish gold body. It's a looker. It might look better in Westmalle's chalice than Westmalle itself does.

You can smell the banana bread and slightly musty yeast character as soon as you pour.

Now that is a tasty tripel. Drinking American versions of the style, I tend to forget just how good these Trappist tripels are. I get clove, nutmeg, unsweetened banana. Bready underneath it all, like a hearty crusty country bread. Requisite dry finish.

I don't know what it is about these beers, but they give a mouthfeel American beers just can't match. It feels like a puffy, creamy cloud in your mouth.

I'd never had Achel before, but this one won't be my last. This is pretty damned close to being a style standard-bearer. Like most good tripels, alcohol is nowhere and the beer goes down way too easily.

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Photo of hustlesworth
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- huge fizz when i popped the cap, poured into chimay goblet this is one foamy beer. some foam came out the top of the bottle volcano-style and smells amazing as it dries on my hands. rising over the lip of the glass, the head is insane. white and puffy, dense yet not heavy, and buildable enough to easily rise an inch and a half over the rim. and with some careful pours i have a 2in high monster blob hanging off the edge. nice! body is a hazy orange apricot color with yellow highlights and some minute yeast particles. delicate sticky crusty lace is...lacey. like a nice curtain or something. yeah, like lace in some places and thick like that cottony filling inside a comforter in other places. i don't know if the foam is ever gonna shrink down because it's been sitting as a wobbly lumpy mass for quite some time now. and the chimay 'C' etching is totally one of those lumps.

S- what up spicy funky belgian yeast. that's what i'm talkin about. fruity phenolic and barnyard fun. smells like muskmelon cherry bandaids. orange, pineapple, banana. baptized in the funk. there's so much yeast character goin on in this beer. sweet-tart and sweet malt like pound cake, or belgian waffles, vanilla, whipped cream, apple, pear, white grape, strawberry, lemon and orange peel, this is THE aroma i want out of a blonde.

T- perfect balance of sweet, tart, and bitter with a perfect accompanying somewhat metallic mineral water flavor (no sulfur at all). saaz hop zesty spiciness from start to finish balances out any residual sugars. tart orchard fruits like pear, apple, white grape, and apricot make up the fruity portion of the flavor with some melon and banana flavors as well. funky band-aid, basement, and horse blanket in the taste also and perfectly so. hop bitterness does become a little rubbery at times and that's the only reason this isn't getting a 5. finishes sweetly malty and candyish with some pale grainy and husk flavors mingled in with earthy yeast.

MF- full and creamy with sparkling aggressive carbonation. some serious pressure built up in that bottle. stamped 31/10/08, i'm assuming this was bottled on halloween making the beer almost 2 years old. it's definitely aged well. clean and dry on the cheeks and sticky on the lips with a lasting bitterness on the tongue.

D- saw it at that old gulf gas station with 500 single bottles and grabbed it right away, i've been lookin for this for quite some time. all i need to do is find a westvleteren and i'll have had a beer from all 7 trappist breweries. very refreshing and drinkable for such a big beer. gotta be one of my favorite tripels ever and the yeast funkiness keeps me comin back for more. shoulda got 2 bottles.

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Photo of Radome
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from 33 cl bottle into a goblet.

A - Beer is extremely carbonated. A bit of foam escaped the bottle as soon as I popped the cap and it took three pours to get it into a glass without overflowing the moussy off-white foam. The beer itself is an light blond color with orange highlights. It has some cloudiness, but you can easily see through it when held up to the light.

S - The initial whiff is of earthy, spicy hops, smelling just like a saison. The malt aroma catches up later, along with some fruity smells reminiscent of grape, apple and pear. Alcohol is also evident. It is very appetizing.

T - The taste is perfectly balanced between malt, hops, and yeast notes. The hops are again spicy or peppery. The yeast lends the apple and pear flavors. There is also some sweetness reminding me of honey or candi sugar. Truly outstanding.

M - The body is moderate, but the feel fades quickly, then there is some residual sweetness that coats the mouth in the end to remind you that you are drinking a substantial beer.

D - This is a continual contradiction that all comes together as a great beer. It is perfectly balanced but still shows some great individual elements. It is substantial and mouth coating but still dangerously drinkable. Bravo!

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Photo of basica
4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Pours an opaque orange-golden color into my Trappist Achel chalice with a thick bubbly head and a nicely rounded and foamy top; pretty good head retention that finally recedes to a very clingy lacing (4.5)

S - Yeasty with a dash of honey sweetness and fruitiness with notes of apple and pear (4)

T - Sweet, honey-ish tastes upfront with a light bready backing from the yeasts; citrus fruitiness with notes of pears fills the middle with a grassy, malty and lightly fruity (pears) finish; pretty well balanced (4.5)

M - Medium bodied with light carbonation and a notable foamy smooth, fairly dry finish (4.5)

D - Definitely a most drinkable, sessionable Tripel; the taste was well balanced with almost perfect smoothness; in my opinion, one of the most enjoyable Belgian Tripel/Blond for the warmer seasons/climates (5)

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle picked up from Knightly Spirits in Orlando. Been having trouble finding this anywhere in Ontario...

Pours a light, opaque golden, with a thick foamy head, crackling with carbonation. Looks great.

Apple, wine, honey, yeast, and a lovely citrus zest to it as well. Smells like a typical, but well-made tripel.

Notes of apple, sugar, malt, pear and grape. Starts sweet, but finishes tartly with a good earthy character.

Crispy carbonation, somewhat biting, but it recedes to a drinkable level soon. Leaves a slightly sticky sensation on the tongue. Tart.

Tastes and drinks like a typical tripel, which for me is a good thing!

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from My Achel Chalice.

A - This beer pours a hazey honey colour, with a slightly off white foamy head that retains well.

S - Nice lemon zest aromas from the bottle.One poured their is more yeats and bread.

T - Nice spicey yeast notes with some passionfruit a citrys interestingly finishes with a honey alcohol flavour.

M - Medium body and perfect balnce with carbonation and just about as smooth as you will find.

D - This is a top beer and deserves top marks. You won't find a poor beer from this Monastary

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Photo of Brabander
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For me this was a blond beer almost to perfection. I got this beer a few years ago from a collegue, in that time i had never heard of BA. I was flabbergasted when i drank the first bottle. What a good beer!

When i was in Belgium a few weeks ago i saw the Achel blond and i immediately bought a few.

Poured cooled in my Struise glass (my favourite glass at the moment) the beer looks almost perfect. With a nice golden fluid and a big big white head the start is ok.

The smell is fresh with the yeast nicely on the background.

A very good taste, smooth and round, completes this wonderfull and drinkable beer. A beer which you should have to drink...It is better than the blond westvleteren.

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Photo of cavedave
3.93/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Spectacular pour. A fizzy but quite clear, shimmering golden, thick looking elixir is topped by a massive lathery off-white head that fills, then overtops, the snifter, comes to a soft point, and looks strangely like the ghost on bottles of Fantome. Classic.

The smell is less strong than expected from its highly refractive look. Plenty enough aroma, though, nice tart yeast, fruity esters of complex diversity, intoxicating florality, spice, warm alcohol, and hints of an earthy, grassy bitter to it. Fantastic.

As it nears room temp. this beer begins to show its plumage. What a marvelously blended mix of subtle fruitiness, mild spice, candy sweet, earth, and light bitter. There are even subtler notes beneath the surface that are beyond my palate to describe, but which give this beer a marvelous deliciousness. The finish grabs a bit of lemony citrus, holds the other flavors, and melts on the tongue with extended pleasure. Not as complex as some.

Mouthfeel is low/med. carb. (despite the look), highly viscous, easy on palate, with an excellent finish. Nice.

Drinkability is rated for being a slow sipper deluxe.

Impression: Another superb Trappist priced too high for one to enjoy as often as one would want.

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Photo of Naugros
3.91/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Careful opening the bottle! Foam immediately rose and I was not quick enough to get the gusher into the tulip glass and, when I did, I only got half the bottle into the glass.

The head on this beer is amazing! Like Orval, it billowed above the lip of the glass and did not spill down the sides. It recedes slightly, but maintains a meringue-like foam on top, three fingers thick! The lace is extremely sticky and not only sticks to the sides of the glass but even protrudes into the glass. The color is really pretty: straw to light orange(almost a 16 on the Lovibond Scale) with a chill haze.

Grassy and floral notes make the hops presence known. The banana-like esters announce the yeast. Any malt in the party is a third wheel and hanging back bringing the bread.

The malts do assert themselves a little on the tongue and, playing with the hops, create an orange sensation on the tip of the tongue with some biscuity notes. But the hops are still the center of the party and bring a bit of bitterness to the back of the throat. There is also a cardamom astringency on the palate.

The aftertaste built by the bitterness and the astringency is a little overwhelming and is my least favorite aspect of this beer. Otherwise, this is very crisp and light with wonderful carbonation.

A really do like this beer, but I much prefer Orval. Probably not one that I'd get again, considering the closest place to me that carries it is about an hour and a half away.

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Photo of generallee
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 1.2oz bottle into a tulip glass. The labels information includes its abv (8%) but there is no freshness date.

Appearance: It has a hazy yellow/orange colored body with lots of carbonation rising up to the head. The just off white head is very tall and thick like a meringue. It is very slow fading and leaves some nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: The aroma has an earthy and bready yeast like character with a touch of funk (horse blanket) and spicy hops.

Taste/Palate: The flavor has the same funky bready yeast character from the aroma but with hints of fruity apple and pear notes. On the palate it has a smooth creamy texture with mild carbonation and the finish has a touch of spicy hop flavor and light bitterness for some balance.

Notes: Yep this is your standard Belgian Style Blonde/Tripel.

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Photo of Shakujin
3.7/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Title: Achel Blond 8%

Appearance: Opaqe dark yellow, nifty bubble pattern forming underneath the head.

Smell: Sour lemon, gentle sweetness, subtly grassyness

Taste: Fruity front incorporating some banana, pear, apple flavors along with a sharp carbonation and a slight sourness

Mouthfeel: Typical of the style, light with strong, tingling carbonation.

Drinkability: I enjoyed the fruit flavors, and the slightly lighter body, but carbonation was a tad rough for my liking.

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Photo of metter98
4.01/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: It pours light golden yellow with a big, white head. A moderate level of carbonation is visible. There was a good amount of head retention.
S: There are gentle aromas of fruit, spices and yeast.
T: The taste is rather complex and the flavors are an interesting mix of malt, hops, and spices. There is a bit of sweetness in the overall taste.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and relatively smooth. There is a good amount of dryness in the finish.
D: The beer is extremely drinkable and rather refreshing.

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Photo of saccro
4.09/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Fuffy white head holds at about 1". Soft golden color under the light with tons of bubbles streaming upwards. Crazy lacing.

S - Phenolic. Herbal and lemon citrus.

T - Very delicious. Very complex taste. A dry pilsner malt flavor is matched by big juicy, fruity notes that end on a bittersweet note. Slight yeast flavor with phenols. Lingering sweetness

M - Medium bodied. Deceptively big but easy drinking. The carbonation sends dances along tongue and the roof of my mouth.

D - Dangerously drinkable. Typical of belgian beers.

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Photo of Fnerk
3.7/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It's always hard to argue about the integrity of a Trappist beer. I bought this thinking that Achel only made one style, but it appears they make five. The manufacture date was August, 2006, so I'm drinking an 8% beer that is 3.5 years old. Has it matured, or has it degraded? The alcohol content implies it probably has changed a little, probably for the better. Carefully poured into a Westmalle chalice.

Appearance - a careful pour yields a three-finger head that settles to a nice fine frothy cap over about five minutes. The color reminds me of apricot nectar, with the typical yeast sediment and particles to be expected from a bottle-conditioned beer.

Aroma - oh, that lovely funk, with notes of pear. The cool thing about Belgian ales is that they hide the malt aroma and turn it into something magical--very hard to explain. No hop aroma that I can detect, but I'm a mediocre beer-taster, I'll leave the rest to the more seasoned reviewers on this site.

Taste - Again, Belgian funk, with a pronounce hop bitterness. It tastes great.

Mouthfeel - Effervescent, as to be expected with a Belgian ale. You don't casck-condition this stuff. ;)

Drinkability - Not sessionable, I could handle maybe two if I nursed them, but what Trappist/Abbey beer *is* sessionable? Orval, maybe, but the bitterness of that beer prevents even that.

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Photo of dstc
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy orange with a huge, foamy white head. Excellent head retention and nice sticky lace.

Smells like a Belgian blond. Yeasty and a bit sharp.

Nice familiar Belgian taste. Has a bite I did not expect and has a rather full alcohol taste.

Like the smell and the taste, the mouthfeel is a bit rougher than expected. Sharp bite with an alcohol feel on the tongue.

I like it. I am very pleased with this beer and would be happy to drink it more often if it was easier to get (and cheaper).

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Photo of glid02
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased from Green's on Buford in Atlanta.

Pours a clear golden color with a 1.5-finger white head. The head slowly recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of light malts with good amounts of syrup-soaked pears and milder amounts of green apples. As the beer warms the pear aromas subside a bit.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Crisp and clean light malt flavors kick things off and are joined by solid amounts of green apple flavors - the green apple is stronger in the flavor profile than it is in the aroma. Midway through the sip the flavors sweeten a bit before carrying through to a crisp ending, leaving equal parts green apple and pear flavors lingering on the palate.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with active carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass very quickly and could easily polish off another.

Overall this was more impressive to me than the aged Brune I had recently. A well done beer that works nice with the time of year. Worth a shot.

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Photo of CHickman
3.88/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy reddish brown with a massive 3 finger foamy/creamy beige head that lasted for a while with very good lacing that left clouds hanging on the side.

Smells of sweet malt, fruit like apple, cherry and citrus, caramel, pepper, spices and a slight metallic odor.

Tastes of sweet malt, grains, yeast, light caramel, raisin, plum, light pepper, herbs/grass, coriander, orange peel, brown sugar, mild spices and then a bitter green apple finish that leaves a pucker in the mouth. The malts are the dominant flavor and mix well with the spices, and this is a pretty balanced beer that is easy to drink. There are hints of the 8% ABV, but it's subtle and doesn't take away from the good flavor. The only knock is the slight metallic smell and taste at the end, which brings the overall taste down a little bit.

Pretty creamy mouthfeel that slides down easy with very light carbonation, but at the same time it's got some body to it and some weight. The caramel sweetness reappears as the beer sits and warms and negates the metallic taste. Overall a very enjoyable beer that's fairly tasty and very smooth and drinkable.

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Photo of BeerNemesis
4.14/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Trapisst Achel 8° Blond. 11.2 oz. bottle. 2010.

Poured vigorously into an Ommegang chalice. Billowing white head holds at about 1" for at least a minute. Soft, hazy golden hue under the light with a torrent of bubbles streaming upwards. Thick, clumpy white lacing adorns the side of the glass in frozen, frothy waves of snow. EDIT: Whoa! Hold on, the lacing on this is AMAZING. I just finished the glass, and it's coated in cascades of white foam!

Phenolic resins. Herbal funk and citrus hops tinge.

hmm... really delicious actually. The lackluster aroma belies the wonderfully complex taste that follows it. A dry pale malt flavor is most apparent -- but it's flanked by big juicy, fruity notes that end on a bittersweet note. Towards the end a delightful chalky yeast flavor burst forth and does a dance with the lush phenols. The final note is somewhat bitter and dry, but there's also something sweet that persists long after the sip.

The mouthfeel is a near-perfect match to the taste. Medium bodied, but almost viciously crisp -- it somehow manages to feel big and make it's presence eminently known. The carbonation sends prickles along my tongue and the roof of my mouth, charging each sip with excitement and energy.

It's drinkable alright, almost dangerously drinkable at 8%ABV. The fact that the alcohol is so well sublimated by the carbonation and flavor can be quite deceptive.

Served with Gouda and Brie cheese and whole grain crackers.

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Trappist Achel 8° Blond from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
4.05 out of 5 based on 749 ratings.
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