Achel Trappist Extra | Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

BA SCORE
94
outstanding
477 Ratings
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Achel Trappist ExtraAchel Trappist Extra
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
Belgium
achelsekluis.org

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by dsa7783 on 01-22-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
477
Reviews:
220
Avg:
4.27
pDev:
9.37%
 
 
Wants:
142
Gots:
79
For Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 477 |  Reviews: 220
Photo of Rochefort10nh
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of afsdan
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of wc94wc
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of maxpower
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml capped bottle pours a cloudy brown color with a huge creamy light brown head that leaves a sticky lacing in my glass. Nutty fruity aromas, flavors of spice, plums, figs, caremel and chocolate. Full bodied with a creamy, silky mouthfeel, finishes on the sweet side, alcohol very well hidden at 9.5%.

 305 characters

Photo of dpgoblejr
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of dgilks
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark chestnut colour with mahogany highlights. Great light tan head with solid creamy appearance.

Massive dried fruit notes. Raisin and date. Interesting melanoidin note that works really well.

Big and complex malt flavour. Rich and chewy combination of dried fruit and toffee. The spicy yeast notes are a little muted but play well into the overall flavour palate.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Not too much which complements this beer.

A really solid beverage. Excellent flavour profile and complexity.

 518 characters

Photo of celticfutblclub
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of majcher33
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of roblund
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of mwilbur
4.49/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter.
A: Pours a nice dark honey brown with dark ruby and yellow hues at the edges with backlighting. Rocky 2-3 inch light tan head with excellent retention.
S: Fresh Belgian yeast, soft caramel malt, a mix of spice (all spice, clove, cinnamon, and a hint of white pepper), cherry, red berries, and a hint of leather. Smells very fresh, fruity, and zesty. Excellent complexity here.
T: That fresh Belgian yeast hits first, very quickly followed by juicy raisins, cinnamon, clove, dates, leather, white pepper, strawberries, cherries, and a soft, but persistent, backbone of caramel malt. With warming, notes of pear and honey emerge. Follows aroma, not precisely, but very close. Wonderfully complex.
M: Soft and fruity sweet. Almost pulpy in feel. Medium body. Lingers and matures beautifully on the palate.
D: Drinks lighter, more fruit-forward, and fresher than I expected. A wonderful example of style! Seek it out!

 964 characters

Photo of jwinship83
4.48/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml capped bottle with a best by date of april 2011. drank from my chimay goblet.

A- this one pours out a murky dark brown colored body with a finger and a half of lasting beige colored head. complete rings of lacing are left behind. perfect.

S- sweet dark malts upfront. brown sugar adds to the sweetness. pretty fruity with pears, apples, plums, and raisins. a little bit of spicy hops at the end. im liking this one so far.

T- sweet dark sugary malts up front with a slight nuttiness to it. lots of sweet and ripe summer fruits. cherries, plums, figs, raisins, and pears. maybe some apple in here also. very complex.

M- light to medium bodied with a high level of carbonation, which is normal for the style. fluffy feeling, if that makes sense to anyone other than myself.

D- an extremely under appreciated beer. a little pricey at 18$ a bottle, but something ill go back and grab another of. very enjoyable. seek this one out.

 941 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Certainly worth trying! When I first opened an Achel 8 Brune side by side with the Achelse Kluis and tasted them cold from the fridge I thought that these beers were both born from the same grist bill with one being just slightly larger. Now I'm not so sure. I was very disappointed with the 8 Brune, but the Kluis is quite special. They initally appear to be almost exactly the same in the glass with a hazy/cloudy russet brown colored body and dark ivory cap, but the head on the Kluis is much creamier, holds far longer, and leaves some very nice lacing lace whereas the basic Achel drops and leaves next to no lace. The nose on both is similar with a sugar-cookie dough maltiness, some red grape, a splash of yeasty spiciness and some alcohol, but the Kluis is much richer and even displays a lightly cocoa-ish side. And, I guess to some extent, the alcohol is more restrained even though it's a touch higher in actual content. Hmmm.... I think more time and effort is put into this beer; as well as a bit more malt. The body is solidly medium and starts to border on full but never quite gets there; and its very fine, natural carbonation tingles the tongue. In the flavor, semi-rich cocoa-tinged sugary maltiness acts as a base while notes of grape-like fruitiness, a spray of hops, and some lightly peppery alcohol and yeasty spiciness widen its character. It's impeccably balanced despite its strength; and it finishes drying with some lingering sugar, hop, and fruit. Although the intensity of the alcohol is still an issue, this remains an impressive and majestic brew that's on par with most of the other Trappist brews... think somewhere between a Chimay Premiere and Grande Reserve. Give it a shot!

 1,711 characters

Photo of silver0rlead
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hard to believe i can actually get this locally but it's true (thanks Pop The Cap). Pours a hazy deep mahogany with a nice tan head that retains as well as can be expected. Aroma is an intense blend of malt and fruit; scents of plum, currant, blackberry, raspberry, dark candied sugar, toasted bread, light clove, and some slight grassy and floral hops...extremely intriguing and near perfect. The taste easily matches the aroma, big fruit and malt flavors: currant, blackberry, fig, plum, raspberry, toasted bread, dark candied sugar, light clove and corriander spices, floral and grassy hops, and some fruity ale esters. Mouthfeel is thick and rich with light to medium carbonation and alcohol is present but doesnt detract from the experience. This is easily my favorite trappist so far; complex, rich and delicious this is definately something to seek out.

 860 characters

Photo of beerphilosopher
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Westmalle chalice (okay, it's close enough) from a green-tinted 750ml bottle, capped. Bottle label looks different than is pictured here. Looks more like the standard Achel 8 label ... but is definitely the 'Extra' at 9.5% abv. Anyway, this one extracts from the bottle as a warm, dark brown with ruby highlights. A thick cocoa tan head appears and likes to stick around. To look at this beer, you know there's a lot going on here. Nose is glorious ... yeast, sweet malts, stewed fruits, and a hint of spice ... okay, quite smelling and start drinking, right.Palate is sweet ... sweeter than the Brune ... very malty and warm. Tastes of Belgian yeast, plums, mollases, and alcohol. Very dark, very sweet, and assertive taste. This beer is a heavyweight ... in taste more than body. This is akin to the Brune in a lot of ways, but stronger and much more assertive. I really enjoy the sheer "power" of this 'Extra' over the other Achel offerings. You know you're drinking something substantial here for sure. Wow ... I still have a half of a 750 ml bottle left. A bit too much for one sitting, perhaps, especially on an empty stomach. Bet it'll still be excellent tomorrow ... "Authentic Trappist" ... this one is worthy to be tried along with the others, though older.

 1,281 characters

Photo of Nat1975
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Viggo
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle picked up in Buffalo a while back.

Pours a cloudy dark orange and brown, some red highlights, very chunky, lots of protein floating around, thick white head forms, and drops to a thick ring, tons of chunky lace on the glass, looks pretty great. Smell is great, caramel, dark fruits, raisins, candi sugar, yeast, orange peel, some spice, very nice stuff. Taste is better, sweet up front, caramel and bread, tons of fruit, yeast, wood, oranges, strawberries, light spice, bitter spiciness in the finish, alcohol jumps out a bit, but is very well hidden. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium to high carbonation, very easy to drink, think I paid $18 and worth every penny. Need to revisit the other Achels because this one is the bomb.

 749 characters

Photo of jjayjaye
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the label, "...the weighty undeniable Extra" (Alias). 750ml bottle with import packaging that differs from the label indicated, with 9.5.% ABV . Foam creeps up and out of the bottle slowly (thankfully) after opening. With great care, one is able to pour gently without disturbing the contents. A shallow layer of bubbles settles out quickly. A couple of shades lighter than cola, but just as clear. Little lacing generated. The smell is large, complex and amazing; rich and earthy, fruity yet malty. Brown sugar or molasses over dark fruits. Full body lightened by the altogether creamy texture brought on by the artistic application of tiny bubbles. Full flavored, classic Belgian yeast mixed with rich dark fruit tastes. The alcoholic content is incredibly well hidden. The simultaneous nose, mouth, flavor combination of this one makes for an amazing drinker. I hereby amend my list of resolutions for 2008 to include serious further "consideration" of Belgian Strong Dark Ales!

 986 characters

Photo of kmpitz2
4.46/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Trying this on the recommendation of stonecrusher.

It pours a deep murky brown color with a finger of head that grows tow two with the cascading bubbles. Retention is beyond belief. I have never seen a head grow on a beer after pouring it. The nose is sweet fig, brown sugar and a nice spiceyness to balance things out. Very nice indeed. The flavor is intense. Fig and raisin dominates, but there is a sherry-like quality to it. It almost has an almond or sweet cherry character to it, but muted. It is not overly sweet, and maybe a touch drying on the finish. The feel is solid moderate with a big bubbly carbonation. keeping it light on my tongue. Super flavor, super aroma, no hint of almost 10% ABV. Damn find beer. Very glad I have one in the cellar.

 759 characters

Photo of DucksFan16
4.46/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tempest
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Split a bottle at Tap and Table in Emmaus, PA. Why, why, why does this beer have to be nearly $29? It's easily the best the legal (not Westvleteren) Trappist beer I've had. Damn. The flavor is soft and malt-heavy with an earthy background. The barley brings a complex mix of typical but delicious candy flavors: figs, toffee, caramel, and cocoa. They're subtle flavors that develop as you sip though, not like some big beer that knocks your palace out. This is an experience, not just a drink. Find this beer.

 509 characters

Photo of goodbyeohio
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

ruby. clear. rich in color like stained cherry wood. light bubbles collect on the surface. quite deceptive, they create a wall of lacing like whipped egg whites. settles into rich thick clouds atop one majestic brew. smell is unexpectedly exciting for a trappist. candi sugar is prevalent, but fermentation sweet spice and notes of horse blanket show up at the party. fruits are here too, but seem young. more banana and red berries than dark, dried currants and things of the like. first thing to hit my mouth is the creamy, retentive foam. it adds a silk texture to the complex, sweer bread and monastic ABV warmth. something exists in this beer beyond the regular achel bruin (besides alcohol).. it's a darker, more evil trappist brew.

some serious malt bitters the background to contrast the brighter fruit spectrum. it is my understanding that this was once the christmas achel, and as often happens with holiday beers like affligem and scaldis, the experimentation shown by the brewery adds to an already stellar beer.

stands complimentary along achel 8 bruin as something totally different.. evolved.. and equally respectable. more of a once-in-a-while thing, but perfect for those special occassions.. (in this case, the contender final episode).

 1,261 characters

Photo of crookedhalo
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

75 cl capped bottle best before 12/2007. Pours a turbid, sienna brown color with a fluffy tan head that lasts for a while. Particulary complex nose; malt, plum-like fruitiness, yeasty, cocoa and some alcohol notes. Clovey phenolic and vinous, with ample maltiness and caramelly sweetness, dark fruit notes like plum and currant, and a pungent yeastiness; lightly hopped, drying the finish a bit. Alcohol esters are sharp, but melded pretty well with all the other amalgamation of flavors. Ample carbonation keeps it light and crisp on the tongue, enhancing the overall experience. A thin cap of foam lasts all to way to the bottom of the goblet. A very nice Trappist overall, and the best in the Achel line of ales.

 715 characters

Photo of AgentMunky
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a chalice.

A: Light woody colour with lots of sediment. Quickly dissipating head with nice tracing and mild lacing.

S: Bready, malty, sweet. Pleasant and tantalising.

T: Wow. This is good. Much like other Trappist dark ales...Dark, malty-sugary, somewhat thick and heavy on the tongue. The hops balance excellently and serve as a counteract the heavier sweet flavours. Mm, this is really good. Aftertaste is sweet, then neutral, with a hint of bitterness.

M: Never grows old, sweet and heavy. Very enjoyable.

D: Wonderful! A little heavy and alcoholic, but this is forgotten after a few sips. Highly recommended.

23 September 2012 re-review:
Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Koningshoeven chalice. Best before 8 August 2013.

4A: Light, almost white head. Good tracing; good lacing. The beer is dark, ruby brown with golden highlights in direct light.

4S: Pungent, alcoholic white grapes. Lightly tart, mostly sweet, very nice. Dark, wholesome bread fresh out of the oven.

4.5T: Yum! I'd forgotten how sweet and fruity this is. Almost like communion grape juice, but with a hint of alcohol and perfectly administered spice to balance the thick-sweet fruit. A consummate abbey ale, that's just a wee bit sticky (especially on the aftertaste) for a perfect score. A little jealous of my past-self, because there is no trace of bitterness in the beer I'm drinking. Maybe years of Double IPAs have skewed my tastebuds?

4.5M: It is sweet and heavy, but it never *does* get old.

4.5O: This bottle only gets a 4.5, but I don't begrudge the 5.0 rating. Absolutely recommended.

 1,611 characters

Photo of siradmiralnelson
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 750cl into Westvleteren chalice.

A. Pours a 1 finger head. Pretty thick lacing. Has a permanent head of about a centimeter. Color is very dark brown.

S. Really good. Wonderful mix of spice, and dark fruit. Get some clove and belgian yeast spicing up the mix along with raisins, figs, and the oh so good dark grape aroma. Really good smelling BSDA.

T. Nice balance of a wealth of flavors. Get spice, hops, dark fruit, sweet malt, brown sugar, rasisins, figs, Belgian yeast. Finishes on the sweet side. Get a little bit of hop bite, and some earthiness in the middle.

M. Medium/full bodied. Medium/low carbonation. Finishes sweet.

O. World class, I would agree with. However there are a lot of beers in that upper echelon, and I would have to rank this middle of the pack for that World Class group. Very well balanced, and extremely easy drinking. Lots of depth in the aroma and flavor. Nice balance of dry and sweet.

 937 characters

Photo of Faxmesomehalibut
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Achel Trappist Extra from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
4.27 out of 5 based on 477 ratings.
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