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

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Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin
Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin

Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Style: Belgian Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 451 | Ratings: 892
Photo of Jeffo
2.42/5  rDev -41.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Got this at the bottle shop down the road.

From a bottle into a chalice.

APPEARANCE: Definately a gusher. Pours a big fluffy 3 finger thinner looking off-white / tan head with decent retention. Colour is a cloudy raw umber brown, quite muddy actually. Head fades to a decent cap leaving lots of immediate lacing. Medium to high levels of carbonation evident. A decent film cap stays to the end and leaves some lacing down the glass.

SMELL: A decently strong nose of caramel malt, brown sugar, and lots of dark fruits as well. Lots of fruity nuances, like raisins, dates, prunes, and something else unique, perhaps some dark grapes and green apples. Quite fruity, perhaps too much so.

TASTE: Caramel malt sweetness up front, but is soon dominated by the fruity esters from the nose and sweet brown sugar. Raisins, grapes, and some sour green apple in there before it's taken over by a solid spiciness from the alcohol. Sweet malt and spicy alcohol, with a bit of sour apples as well, are very prevalent in the long lasting aftertaste. A unique taste profile for a dubbel, but unfortunately not in a good way. The sourness was a little off putting by the end.

PALATE: Thin on the palate and lots of carbonation. Goes down prickly with a bit of a bite at the end and finishes quite cloying and mouth-coating. I'd like it to be a little thicker, creamier, and smoother. Not my favourite feel.

OVERALL: This seems to be a love-it-or-hate-it kind of brew, and I don't think I'm much of a fan. Definitely a unique dubbel, but a little too sour and thin for my palate. I had trouble finishing this one. There are plenty of dubbels I thoroughly enjoy, and sadly this is not one of them. I won't be getting this one again.

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Photo of ultralarry2006
2.79/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from an 11.2 oz. bottle. Left a two finger head with excellent retention, and really good lacing. Body was a hazy light brown like a hazy apple cider. Looked really good.

Aroma - phenolic medicine and astringent alcohol, hint of plums under all that. Smelled more chemical than beverage.

Taste - same as the smell. Medicine and alcohol. As it warmed there were some plums and prunes, but it was mostly a chemical, medicinal, or even lower shelf liquor taste. It's not totally bad, but it's not really good either.

Mouthfeel - full, asringent, and rather drying.

Drinkability - it's not really good, so it's not sessionable, and high abv would have lowered that anyway.

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Photo of harrymel
2.96/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a dark brown with excellent clarity. Two fingers of latte fall to a very thick quilt of the same. Stubborn lacing. Good looker.

S: Whoa, they didn't let the alcohol infuse into the beer at all! Smells like ETOH up front. After that, there's some clove, pepper, skunk (green bottle).

T: Sharp and sweet. Some hints of chicory, allspice and cherry. The skunking is evident - too bad.

M: Thin, thin, thin. Low in carb.

O: Meh, okay.

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Photo of Pundarquartis
3.08/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pleasant aroma and appearance with a beautiful head which makes me believe it'll be quite a pleasant story. However, I become a bit sad when I take a sip. It tastes is good, but without depth and with an annoying metallic aftertaste that just ruins everything. A bit boring on the palate but not bad, it lacks a bit of mouthfeel for a dubbel in my opinion, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Decent beer, but not a lot more than that.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.11/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a burnished gold colour with deep red tinge. Head is cream-coloured, large webs on the side and sinking beautifully and unevenly on the top. Trails of lace left behind and strong, furious bead keeping it alive. Pretty nice.

Nose is quite grainy. Lots of barley with dark grain bread and hints of metal on there. Some slight darker notes, hints of soil and chocolate. Slight sourness with grain husk. Yeah, a bit lacking, just grain and not a huge amount else. Expected more from the style.

Taste is richer, maybe more malty, with a bronzey metallic edge. Lots of burnt sugar up front that descends into a sour and quite phenolic mid-palate with cherry notes and some tart blackberry character as well. Hint of like cleaning solvent or something on the back, with that slightly harsh phenolic astringency. Perhaps not bad stylistically but would appreciate more sweetness or spice. I'm not really enamoured with this beer.

Good full body with lots of texture. Too much carbonation though mars it slightly.

Not too fussed about this, as a dubbel or as a beer. I've had better of both.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.16/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown/ruby with a large lasting head.
Nose shows caramel, grassy hops, bready malt and doughy yeast. That grassy character ain't good.
Flavours include loads of candi sugar, bready malt, golden syrup and caramel. Very nice.
Unfortunately there's way too much carbonation. Seriously ridiculous. Can't get much of a taste because of it.

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Photo of ZenAgnostic
3.18/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into Trois Pistoles snifter. This is the 2nd time I'm having this beer. The first time I had it, I didn't rate it. The beer had survived a car crash at 70mph into the back of a semi-truck on Sept/10/11. So did the snifter, miraculously. I was going to rate it, but just ended up enjoying it slowly instead. Now I'm ready to come back to it.

Back label stamped 17/01/2010. Date notches not used.

Appearance - This bottle was a gusher. Was more carb than the first one of these I had. Huge loose tan head with medium low retention. Dark cloudy brown body with lots of yeast particulate.

Smell - This bottle is no where near as good as the first one. This one smells fishy. Olive juicy. Could be a skunked bottle. I remember the first st bottle being really malty sweet with no off smells. Very alcoholic this time around.

Taste - Metallic. Alcoholic. Not much of sweet balanced malty complexity from the first bottle I had. Perhaps it was a different vintage?

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied. Astringent.

Overall Drinkability - This beer deserves a much higher score, but unfortunately the bottle I'm using to base the rating on is not a great example. Has tons of negative characters that wasn't found in my first bottle, and none of the complexity either. Just goes to show you, ever beer deserves a second chance because you never know! For reference, the first one I rated would have been something like an A or A+.

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Photo of dgilks
3.18/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mildly hazy, deep golden colour with a small light tan head. Average head retention.

Cidery, apple aroma with mild caramel notes. A touch of cinnamon.

Mild malt flavour with lots of bitter apple. Again I get lots of cidery character.

Medium-light body with moderate carbonation. Fair but the mouthfeel accentuates the cider notes.

A reasonable beer underneath the apple notes and easy enough to drink.

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Photo of ZDub
3.23/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 330ml bottle with a printed date of 7/28/10.

A - A light pour into a tulip glass unleashes a massive off-white head. The color is a deep amber/brown with minimal light penetration.

S - Nice gentle aroma, not huge. Smells of dark fruits, figs/prunes. There's some sweetness as well, dark sugar.

T - The first thing I notice is a huge bready sweetness up front. Almost cloyingly sweet. After the sweetness I get mostly raisin/prune flavors and perhaps the tiniest hint of caramel or brown sugar. I don't detect any alcohol.

M - Moderately light to medium bodied. Little carbonation.

D - I would have no problem having one of these from time to time but there are better dubbels out there.

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Photo of bditty187
3.23/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Murky brown with vague reddish-gold highlights, the off-white head reached about a finger in height. There is a massive amount of sediment suspended in my glass; I didn’t notice it in the bottle, d’oh! Head retention was fair; it did start to dissipate almost immediately. The appearance, as whole, is satisfactory; the dandruff in the glass is annoying. Subsequent lacing was nonexistent. The nose is malty sweet with raisins, cola, airy pepper, sea salt and yeast; every other whiff or so I could get a hint of the alcohol. If it was more potent it might have been more inviting or at least exciting. The bouquet is a bit dull. The palate is much more enhanced than the nose indicated, apples, bananas, and pears upfront. In the middle it gets a little tart and some sweetness like a cola becomes more noticeable. A bit of toasty caramel and candied sugar finishes the beer. The aftertaste is awfully yeasty. Yuck. The flavors work well enough and it has moments of tastiness but they are few and far between. However the lack of body is too perceivable, it’s medium-light at best and far too thin for a Dubbel. The carbonation is quite massive and bothersome. I don’t think this aspect of the beer is any good at all. In fact I’m not really impressed with any aspect of this beer. It is quite average. The nicest thing I can say is the brewers hid the alcohol well. This is as lousy as Chimay Red. I need not drink it again. I bought my 11.2-ounce bottle in Iowa City.

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Photo of mmmbeer
3.3/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330 mL bottle with 11/04 notched on the label. A head develops in the bottle from the conditioning before I even pour. It pours a deep crimson/brown that is very cloudy with lots of sediment and a 1/2" khaki head that leaves little lacing. There are aromas of vinous malts, sweetness, caramel, hints of mango and apple, and a distinct wet paper scent. The taste follows suit with some grass/hay notes and some powdery yeast on top of a medium to thick body that isn't quite as thick as I'd like. Past it's prime, but still tolerable. I'd like to try a fresh bottle, though.

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Photo of OnThenIn
3.33/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Straight foam. This beer just explodes and creates a fluffy tan head. There is crazy lacing and the beer itself is a rusty brown color.

Smell: A sweetness and dark fruit aroma. Pretty light aroma actually.

Taste: A bit alcoholic with a lot of warmth. There is a definite dark fruit component. A bit of plum and raisins with a tiny bit of breadyness. The complexity is there, but it is just so light.

Mouthfeel: Perfect mouthfeel. I mean the carbonation is good even though the beer basically exploded out of the bottle. Just a really smooth drink.

Drinkability: Sipping this beer was rather enjoyable due to the great mouthfeel. I really just wasn't impressed due to how light the flavors and aroma was in the beer.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.35/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown 33cl bottle, best before Apr 2008, drank March 2007.

Poured into a Straffe hendrik chalice glass, well almost half was before the foaming head came to the top of my glass. Cloudy redish brown with a huge biege head, which stays for a long time.

Yeast and some hop aroma, toffee smell came as the beer warmed up, as did sour apples.

Bitter sweet taste, yeasty with a fizzy toffee-ish feel to it.

Aftertaste of the bitter sweet yeasty flavour hangs around.

The second pour was even more yeasty (the sediment came with the second pour) and cloudier of course.

Very drinkable, but a long way from the best Trappist beer i have had.

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Photo of Marius
3.4/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

33cl bottle. Dark copper-brown with a tall tan head with very good retention. Smells like Belgian yeast, copper, dried fruit. The taste follows the same notes, bitter-sweet with a strong metallic feeling in the foreground. Medium bodied, medium carbonation and a bitter-sweet and very metallic aftertaste.

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Photo of goz
3.41/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep mahogany, with a large tan head that mostly diminishes, leaving good amounts of lacing. Aroma is dark fruits (mostly raisin), backed with some bready maltiness. Flavor is sweet, somewhat fruity (raisin), and some doughie malts. Medium body.

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Photo of jlervine
3.42/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a dark murky brown with very thin, almost nonexistent off-whte head. The smell was predominately yeast, with only a faint bit of malt. The flavor had alcohol notes, a bit of spiciness, and some fruity esters and phenols tossed in. The mouthfeel felt thin to me, and the taste just didn't seem all that great.

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Photo of Avagadro
3.44/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: tawny in color with a rocky head, Achel is clear and full of lacing.

S: this brew doesn't deliver the same complex and upfront bouquet that I've come to expect from a Trappist brewery. The nose is faint and simple, with some prune barely leaving an impression.

T: this brew is quite complex, with fruity tones ( banana, bubblegum, pineapple) as well as toasty/malty ones.

M: light body with a slight syrupy stickiness that is quickly washed away by the onslaught of carbonation.

D: overall a well-made beer, but it pales in comparison to the other Trappist offerings. I know that brewing isn't their main objective, but a little time in the brewhouse instead of the chapel might help them out.

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Photo of bskrtz
3.45/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A) Earthen brown, hazy but not cloudy & dense like many of its brethren. Light passes through my full pint challice

S) Sweet & sour, ginger, licorice & carmelized sugar

T) Crisp & dry, bitter overtones with strong alcohol. The sweet doughy taste of Belgian Bruin is there but lersser than most

M) Fizzy carbonation, thin & smooth

D) On the light side of the Dark Belgian Ale style. A great beer with or before a meal

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.47/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Muddy brown with a hint of orange color with a thick tan colored head that leaves decent lacing in the goblet. Smells of yeast, dark malts, and dark candi sugar with a smidge of spiciness. Not particularly the most complex Trappist I've tried, but the flavor is there, the alcohol punch is there, and it's rather smooth. Like other Trappist ales, I couldn't drink them back-to-back because I reserve them for "special treats". I must admit that I was slightly disappointed by this one.

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Photo of markaberrant
3.49/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in 20oz stemless red wine glass.

A - Gigantic head forms, it barely fits into the glass. Takes forever for the head to recede, there is still big sticky gobs and tons of lacing. Clear dark red colour.

S - raisins, a bit of malt, spicy esters. Not overly strong.

T - Sweet dark malt, warming spice, hops round out the finish. Originally gave it 3.5, but it is opening up as it warms in the glass.

M - Prickly finish and quite warming, too much in fact. Tons of carbonation. Gets better as it warms and carbonation lowers... begins to get creamy and brings out more flavour.

D - It's taking a while for me to come around to this one, but I'm not sure it is worth the wait.

I had the Blond a couple days ago, and thought it was fantastic, but this is a different story. This is just so-so... very little character. My original scores were very harsh, but it substantially improved towards the end of the glass.

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Photo of Realale
3.49/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Opaque mahogany with some seriously good-sized chunks. Huge beige head that is very rocky, with an almost sticky quality to it. It slowly settles to an incomplete and rocky cap.

Nose is rich cakey malt with nice candied fruit notes, which become more apparent as the beer sits. Rummy/alcholic notes join the nose with time as well. Palate is malty sweet with a lot of raisin/prune/candied citrus notes. It definitely takes on a brown bread taste as well. Eventually becomes a bit alcoholic, and the finish quite drying.

Maybe I just don't get Dubbel, but I don't particularly enjoy this. Best before date of May, 2004.

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Photo of ricknelson
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Our group of 4 Beer Advocate members did a recent small bottle tasting of high alcohol brews.
Among the 12 brews tasted was; Achel 8% Brune Dubbel from Trappist. Although not a real high alcohol beer at just 8% , it did finishing 11th with an average rating of 3.56. It is possible that something was wrong with this bottle, maybe age. Can not read the date code for the year.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

33cl brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Trappist Westvleteren stem-goblet (the smaller model) in me gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are sky high given its reputation, the style, and its status as a trappist brew. I believe this is me first beer from this abbey brewery. Imported by the Shelton Bastards.

Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated. Served a bit warmer than refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

I couldn't find a bottled on or best before date.

Poured just fine from the bottle with no difficulties.

A: Pours a 3.5 finger head of nice cream, glistening beige colour, good foam, good thickness, and great retention considering the ABV. Colour is a semitransparent chestnut amber-copper. No yeast particles are visible - though this is the top of the bottle's contents. Colour is vibrant if understated. No bubble show - though none is expected for the style.

Sm: Biscuity yeast, plum, fig, cream, clean malts, biscuit malt, a hint of candi sugar, fresh red and green apple, very light floral hops, and some other indistinct fruit esters I can't quite identify. A very subtle mild strength aroma. I'm intrigued.

T: Dried fig and plum are the most notable notes. They rest atop clean unobtrusive malts with no caramelization or toasting to distract from the subtle fruit character. Cream is buried in the layered malts. Hopping is light, with vague floral notes and even a light bitterness hinted at on the climax. Hints of crisp apple emerge in the third act and finish. Biscuity yeast rounds out the flavour. Nicely balanced and built if somewhat muted. Westvleteren 8 is far more evocative, but the fruit notes here are nice, especially when accented by the yeast. I get some mild spice (likely from the yeast). Well built and nicely subtle. Complex enough. I like it.

Mf: Dry throughout, which does reduce its drinkability but helps bring out the flavours. Gets wetter in the third act. I'd prefer this structure reversed. Somewhat coarse. Slight subtle cream. I find it too dry, but it is nice. Nicely carbonated. Very delicate.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but too dry. I'd have it again, and I look forward to having more beers from this brewery. Hides its ABV extremely well. I'd quite like to try it aged.

Would pair well with crisp apples.

High B-

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Photo of OlRasputin989
3.51/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into Chimay glass...

A: Pours a dark brown with a big rocky, white head. Leaves thick lacing and has good head retention.

S: a very fruity aroma(pears, apples, white grapes), bread dough, and a hint of caramel

T: very bread like upfront, spicy, with more of the aforementioned fruits, and a brown sugar background. seems like too much yeast to me, taking away from other characteristics of the flavor.

M: medium body, crispy, and dry.

Overall, a decent beer, but doesn't match the standards of other trappist ales I have tried. There is alot of yeast in the aroma and taste(more than I like for a Belgian ale), and the body is rather light. Worth trying but nothing exceptional.

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Photo of paterlodie
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Visiting the monestary today for a nice walk in the green I tried the beer from the tap first... but brought me some extra botles for a good analyse.... however... nothing special.
A nice appearance with a thick foam that stayes for a long time. Makes it off course hard to smell the beer but only a litle trace of malt and some yeastsmell but rather dull. Taste also nothing like I suspect from a real trappist. Medium bodied and no great aftertaste too. Next time rather go the extra road for a Westvleteren. But about achel; it's a good place for a nice walk in the green and with a couple of Achelbottles most certaily a great enjoyment..

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Trappist Achel 8° Bruin from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
Beer rating: 4.13 out of 5 with 892 ratings