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

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Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin
865 Ratings
Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin

Brewed by:
Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by zerk on 01-14-2003

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 865 |  Reviews: 442
Photo of srandycarter
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Glowing amber to brown. Lots of bubbly head, some very persistent lace.

S - Yum. Juicy fruity, banana, vanilla.

T - Lush, fruity, Belgian yeast shine through.

M - Medium body, almost too much carb for my taste. Very well balanced.

D - Even at this ABV, nice, and more please!

 284 characters

Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, with a dual-coloured label that is sort of reminiscent of the Taoism symbol.

This beer pours a mildly hazy, very dark orange brick amber hue, with a teeming tower of effervescent, densely foamy, and essentially puffy beige head, which settles rather slowly, leaving a multifaceted network of webbed lace around the glass.

It smells of somewhat tart, acidic apple and cherry wine, softly roasted caramel malt, bready yeast, dark musty orchard fruit, and quite ineffectual earthy hops. The taste is more subdued, semi-sweet apple, wrapped in a slightly charred caramel malt, some earthy, spicy yeast, fleshy, overripe fruit - think bruised banana and wet figs - low-test red wine, and soft earthy, weedy hops.

The carbonation is on the low side, quite understatedly frothy, the body medium-full in weight, generally smooth, and perhaps a touch creamy. It finishes with a small drying flourish - alcohol and fruit esters clamping down on the increasingly wan malt, yet providing adequate balance.

A pretty agreeable dubbel, maybe a bit sweet up front, but hardly a runaway sugar or booze bomb, as it does well to mask the 8% ABV, making this slide down oh so enjoyably. Good stuff, overall.

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.36/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 33cL bottle into a wine glass.

A: Absolutely gorgeous. Huge, frothy white head sticks to the sides of the glass as it falls. Colour is a warm, vibrant brown; garnet and lovely in light. Visibility only lasts to the other side of the glass. This beer makes me miss Belgium.

S: Fruit -- apple, already fallen from the tree and over-ripening in the sun. Spices -- anticipatory clove. The smell is a bit weaker than I'd hoped, and something less than pleasant lurks in the distance, possibly metallic notes or some strange yeast.

T: Mmmmm. I take a moment to just get lost in the flavour. My nose did not lead me astray, bruised apple and light cloves are the most obvious flavours. A bit of tartness slips in when I'm not paying attention, pleasantly surprising me towards the end. The aftertaste doesn't have a definite beginning, but rather the taste simply tapers off, heroin-slow. After an indefinite amount of time, you realise that yes, you have swallowed and the fruity flavours are still there, sticking to your tongue, with trace amounts of alcohol. Then you take another sip and the wondrous cycle begins anew.

M: Magnificent. Crisp, bubbly, titillating. Smoothish, with some playful roughness around the edges.

D: Drinking the Achel Bruin is an absolute pleasure. It may not be the best dubbel ever made, but it is one of the best-made. This will probably become my go-to beer for introducing people to the style -- fruity, lightly spicy, incredibly nice. Part of my rapture may be the result of being slightly beer-starved of late, but nevertheless, I highly recommend this one. Will be buying again, and again.

 1,639 characters

Photo of OtherShoe2
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish brown with a big off-white head. Some lacing, a bit murky.

Tart fruit, cherry, toasted malt, alcohol aromas, but not overly strong.

Sweet and tart to start with some bitterness from an overbrowned toast flavor. Wood and alcohol interplay, with a little yeastiness. Nice balance and smooth flavor throughout. The bitter-tart finish is long and pleasant.

Fuller bodied, lots to swish around, but carbonation keeps this from being cloying or overdone.

Easy to drink. Alcohol is well hidden and the brew is actually very refreshing. Great beer.

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Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a brown body w/ 2-finger head that takes forever to die and leave lace ring on top of a mild, nutty yeasty aroma with a hint of figs and black cherry along with a touch of bitter hops and smokiness. Smooth, slightly creamy, tad sweet caramel flavor along with toffee or nutti/breadiness. Some fruit flavors like touch of orange, black cherry/dark fruits, (grapes and sour fruit- maybe), as well as sweet and sour fruit notes. Textbook quality dubbel and a must-try for anyone into this style.

 499 characters

Photo of tewaris
3.74/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle with a best by date of March 17, 2012 poured into an Ommegang balloon on 11/16/2010.

Appearance 5/5
Clear, but not brilliantly so, with a rich and deep dark caramel color, and a big, dense, rocky light tan head. Good retention and excellent lacing. Very beautiful.

Aroma 3.5/5
Brown sugar and caramel notes upfront, with perfumy phenols and some lightly tart, lemony notes, that could've been because of escaping CO2. Yeasty. Weak smelling overall.

Taste 3.5/5
Brown sugar and caramel for the most part with no elements of dried fruits; very slightly bitter towards the end with a medium, long-ish finish that had hints of hops and residual sugars. Mellowing. Slightly tannic right before the finish, after it warmed up.

Mouthfeel 4/5
Medium to thin body; quite effervescent: the glass seemed too small at times to contain the huge carbonation!

Drinkability 4/5
I can throw back a few (and then get in trouble) but seemed like some mildly bittersweet tannic concoction to me, akin to a lightly sweetened black tea.

 1,034 characters

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 hardy008
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reddish brown color with 3 fingers worth of beige head with very good retention and a lot of lacing. The aroma has caramel, candi sugar, dark fruit, and a whiff of alcohol. If the aroma is any indication, this should be good.

Sweet without being cloying. Caramel, candi sugar, and dark fruit are present in the taste, and balance together nicely. I do not taste the alcohol very much, but it is there a little.

Light to medium bodied, sweet with a slightly bitter aftertaste. Nice carbonation. Finishes dry. A very nice beer.

 527 characters

Photo of mithrascruor
4.07/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle at O'Brien's, San Diego.

Pours a darker red color with a rocky light-tan head. Mild aroma with some malts and hints of sourness. A tasty beer, but quite mild in flavor. There's some light, sweet malts, fruit (grape & apple), and some bitter and sour undertones as well, particularly towards the finish & into the aftertaste. Light- to medium-bodied with mild carbonation. Easy to drink with no taste of alcohol.

 428 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.8/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a nice purple-brown color with a good off white head. Nice lacing spots. Nose brings dark sugars with a tiny amount of roast as well as spice and a bit of booze. The taste is raisins, dates, other dark fruits as well as caramelized sugar, some booze, and caramel. Nice medium mouthfeel with low-ish carbonation. Drinks quite well. Good, not great, beer.

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Photo of yapi
3.63/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

S: dark fruits, yeasty, a bit of brown sugar
T: Raisins, plums, green apple, brown sugar, but all a bit on the light side for me.
M: to much carbonation for my liking.
O: I'm beginning to suspect 8% ABV Dubbels aren't really my thing... prefer a good strong smooth, more complex, sweet quad.

 293 characters

Photo of Hopfenpeter
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I used a crystal mug to pour the beer and the color is a very nice amber golden brown with an off white head.
The smell is soft and hints a little caramel an citrus.
Tasting the beer you be surprised of it fantastic balance between hops and malts. Not to sweet and not to bitter, it delivers a great palate of fresh tastes like caramel, wheat and fruit like plum.
A prickly mouthfeel turns into a nice bitter aftertase.
Certainly calls for more, but could not drink a lot.

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Photo of zeff80
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, yet dark amber color with a two-finger, off-white head of foam. It had some nice retention and left some soapy trails of lace.

S - It smelled of dried fruits - mostly raisin and plum. Good maltiness with hints of chocolate.

T - It tasted quite malty with strong raisin and plum flavors. A touch of apple. Overall, it's sweet with a touch of bitter hops.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a mild alcohol warmth.

D - This is a really nice dubbel. It is fairly easy drinking despite its high ABV.

 549 characters

Photo of Strix
4.58/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy caramel, ridiculously foamy and lasting head.

Smells of honey, bread, and fruits, particularly apple.

Complex blend of bread, spices, apple, yeast, caramel, pepper, light fruits, hop bitterness, honey sweetness, and slight earthiness. I don't know how those monks do this, but they do it well. Alcohol undetectable.

Mouthfeel medium-light.

This disappeared quickly. I will definitely pick this up if I can find it again. Complex and flavorful.

 462 characters

Photo of pmlondrigan
4.26/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stupid apperance, rocky white head that just stays and stays. Beautiful ruby brown color. Aroma of burnt caramel, dark candy sugar, raisins. Chewy and rich, notes of caramel, candy sugar, spices, and nice earthy hop tones. I can see how this ale might get cloying after a while. Nice mouthfeel for the style, good body not thin. These beers are drinkable, but too me really only in the fall and winter months.

 409 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
3.97/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a light to medium amber, much less of a head than the blond, but still good retention, some lace.

S: Sweet dark pastry bread and brown sugar, hint of ethanol.

T: Orange comes out a bit initially, but then I get bombarded with dark fruit, plum heavy, brown sugar, light notes of chocolate even. Fruitcake.

M: Medium-bodied, slightly sweet finish. This one shows the booze a bit more on the back end compared to the blond, soft creamy frothy carbonation.

D: A very good dubbel in a style that I've seen a lot of mediocrity in. Doesn't stand out to me as much as the Blond, but there's a lot of good flavours here and well worth a pickup.

 666 characters

Photo of impending
4.39/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

33cl into a tulip. Pours a deep dark chesnut. As the massive head slowly recedes clumpy froth remains behind.

Sweet dark fruits dominate the nose with candied dark crystal malts, very nice.

Taste could be described as a quad light with a tad extra phenols. Dry yeasty aftertaste doesn't linger as long as I would prefer. Medium mouthfeel, appropriate for the flavor.

 378 characters

Photo of GilGarp
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33cl bottle stamped 08/10/09.

Side note: this is the only Trappist brewery I haven't tried before.

Served cool into a pint glass. I would have chosen a more appropriate vessel but nothing was clean.

Achel 8 Brune is a slightly hazy redish brown with a thick tight head. As it settles, a perfect sheet of lace is left behind.

The aroma is wonderful with raisins, clove, and brown bread.

The flavor is excellent as well. Complex layers of fruit, spice, and yeast esters all come together beautifully in this beer.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and higher carbonation than ideal. Let the latter soften up and it would be fantastic.

Overall, it's really an exceptional dubbel. Great aroma and flavor. Even after having my first Westy 12 last night, this is very impressive.

 774 characters

Photo of kwjd
4.28/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby brown colour with huge off-white head with a careful pour. The cloud of head hardly dissipates with nice lacing. Smells is sweet brown sugar, dried fruits and Belgian yeast. Flavour has a small amount of bitterness to balance out the sweetness. This comes together very nicely and may be the best dubbel I've ever had (at least so far). Very nice carbonation level.

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Photo of cpetrone84
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours a reddish plum like color with a light tan colored head that is very bubbly and sticks to the side of the glass.

S-notes of toasted bread and caramel, hints of brown sugar up front. hints of yeast lie underneath, somewhat dusty, with some dark fruits and notes of alcohol in the back.

T-the taste is similar, hints of bread, a fair bit of caramel and brown sugar, the yeast again seems to be underneath but present throughout and is again dusty, the back is sweet bringing candied dark fruits and hints of alcohol.

M-medium to light body and lively and carbonated on the tongue, it has a crisp semi dry finish.

D-this is a pretty tasty beer, its a little sugary with all the dark candied fruits and lacks complexity, but still a tasty brew and nice lively feel.

 773 characters

Photo of BobZ
4.37/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 Oz. bottle, Poured into my St. Bernardus chalice.

Appearance: Rich brown, head builds to a creamy 1/2" then exhibits excellent lacing.

Smell: Beautiful, deep, Belgian yeast, dark fruit, even some mild hops in the nose.

Taste: Excellent dubbel, depth, complexity, dark fruit, hints of caramel, very, very well balanced. One of the best dubbels I have ever had.

Mouth feel: Excellent carbonation, very smooth on the palate.

Drinkability: Very Drinkable, may be better for longer sessions than higher abv beers.

An extraordinary example of what a Trappist dubbel is all about.

 584 characters

Photo of domtronzero
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best before date of 17/03/12. Enjoyed out of my Duvel Green tulip.

A - Pours a slightly hazy orangish brown with a long-lasting, huge, rocky whitish head. Lots of lacing left everywhere with this one. Aside from the slight haze, this is exactly what I like to see in these kinds of beers.

S - Big estery profile, quite complex. A little bit of banana with some apple-like esters. Could be a little pear-like, but to me seems a little closer to apples. Slight pilsner malt condy sweetness. A touch of alcohol comes through as mildly perfumy, enhanced as the beer warms, although it remains pleasant.

T/M - Pilsner malt sweetness with a big ester character. Again, the bananas and apples come through. Light alcohol comes through as a slight honey-like flavor. Very light earthy hop flavor with a modest bitterness that really helps this beer finish clean and dry. Medium body with moderately high carbonation. Slight warming in the finish, with a pleasant aftertaste of honey and pilsner malt sweetness. Very smooth for 8% abv.

D - This is a great beer. Very easy to drink by itself or with food- in fact, dangerously easy considering the 8% abv. This is the kind of Belgian beer I could have several of in a sitting. I have had several of the other offerings from Achel, but this is the best I've had so far.

 1,312 characters

Photo of HalfFull
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a wine glass form a 330 ml. bottle, showing a clear ruby pour. An inch of frothy head lingers for a good time and leaves some scattered lacing as it settles. Maintains a steady cap through the glass.

Nose is clean and of yeast and some light muddled fruit though surely not overly enticing. Does expand with some warming to offer a touch of chocolate. Touch of alcohol and cherry with some warming are welcome.

Taste follows with a nicely balanced footprint and a bit of brown sugar. Solid and without the defects/overabundance often found in the style. Gets better with a bit of warming. Bit creamy on the finish given the carbonation. A very solid beer that doesn't overwhelm with either excessive fruitiness or sweetness. Not as complex as a few of the style, but very nice and hides its ABV well.

 814 characters

Photo of andrewinski1
4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Date says: 23/04/11. Poured into a White Birch Chalice. Huge foam head on this one that stays for minutes. The color is a nice nut brown. Gorgeous. The smell reveals cinnamon and a hint of dried fruit. The taste is very dry, but indicates brown sugar and cinnamon apples. The yeast character is very dominant. I am a huge fan of Belgians that are nice and dry. This is an excellent Trappist ale and I regret not trying it sooner.

 429 characters

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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Trappist Achel 8° Bruin from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
Beer rating: 4.13 out of 5 with 865 ratings
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