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

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Trappist Achel 8° BruinTrappist Achel 8° Bruin
874 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: 874 |  Reviews: 446
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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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 ktrillionaire
4.69/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

As soon as I cracked this one, there was a pop!, I smelled banana-nut muffin, and then I scrambled to contain this Trappist gusher. I could immediately tell that it was not the average Dubbel.

A - Pours a deep walnut-brown hue with reddish highlights at the glass' edges. The body is capped by an expansive khaki head that is similar to foamy cola, but frozen in time. Well, at least the foam sticks around for a few minutes, if not time immemorial.

S - Delicious beyond what I've experienced in a Dubbel, and I haven't even sipped it yet; I've just been sampling the aromatic. Sweet honey-mead notes, delicious port wine, nutty and jammy, dark fruits are eschewed in favor of medium-colored and/or dried tropical fruits like papaya, nectarine, guava, pomegranate and plum. Time to get sippin...

T - This is a delicious brew; perhaps too complex for me to articulate the essence of effectively, but I'll give it a shot. I get some concord grape, granny smith apples, fig jam, dates, and a bit of an herbal spiciness that seems a result of the flavor-fusion of yeast and hop. I also get some small root essences, like sarsaparilla or sassafras, and something that is involved in the flavoring of cream soda. It has a mostly clean finish, except that I get a bit of a walnut taste lingering at the finish and beyond. Above all, the strength of this beer lies in the fact that all of the aforementioned disparate elements are so well-integrated; the result is phenomenal.

M - Medium-bodied and velvety, yet retaining semi-prickly carbonation. Dynamic.

D - This is quite simply the best Dubbel I've had up to this point. I am not a tremendous fan of the style, usually, especially in comparison to the other Trappist works. But this one is ridiculous!

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Photo of Brabander
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

For a dubbel this is a very good one. Achel is known for the wonderfull blond they make but now i notice that they also make a very good dark beer.

Nice broken white head with a fluid that looks like a dark tea.

The smell and taste is soft and caramellic. The head disappears after a while and a little ring remains. I see a nice carbonation.

All in all one of the better dubbels for me.

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Photo of mulder1010
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ML poured into a tulip glass

A-- moderate pour got a huge 3 finger light brown head. Slowly died down to just under a finger. Good head retention and some small carbonation beads. Color is more of a muddy ruby grape color.

S-- Grape, bubblegum, poached plum and pear. A little bit of hop spice to offset the sweetness of this.

T-- Stewed plums and cherries. Very hearty and almost jam like.

M-- Spice still cuts down on the sweetness of this. More it sits in mouth the bubble gum taste comes back more as well as the poached plum and pear that are not really in the taste. A bit high in carbonation and maybe that is a good thing as this would be very jammy if it was lower carbonated. Gives it more of a candy type taste and feel with more carbonation.

D-- Really scary how drinkable this is. A little sweet and carbonated, but reminds me a lot of La Chouffe Nice and their Brune. ABV is very well hidden and can drink a 750 without even thinking about it. More I think about it does remind me a lot of carbonated grape soda. YUM!

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Photo of seanyfo
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle poured into a delirium tremens chalice.

A- Dark ruddy ruby body with a 3 finger off white head that has remarkable staying power and produces excellent lacing.

S- Malty caramel sweetness, minimal clove spice

T- Malt sweetness dominates, with a semi dry finish, very light hop bite and some clove in the finish lingering.

M- Low carbonation (should be higher), medium body, slightly sticky dry finish.

D- A nice example of the style, some good complexity with malt domination without overpowering the semi dry finish.

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Photo of smcolw
3.76/5  rDev -9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Huge, five-finger head. Dies slowly and leaves lots of webby lace. Recedes in a rocky fashion. Leaves a solid froth dome that extends well over the glass! The liquid is brown and clear. Simply put, a 33cl bottle fills a 20 oz glass, most of which is head.

Dark malt aroma, reminiscent of chocolate ice cream

Strong alcohol and darker malt flavor on the initial sip. There's a bitterness present from light hop. Overall, this is a sweet offering. The aftertaste is short lived for the style. Good blend on the swallow of sweet-bitterness. Rich bodied with a low carbonation. Warm alcohol finish.

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

An aggressive pour into my Chimay goblet which results in a light tan head filling it to the lip. It rests above a body which is a deep and dark mangosteen coloured. The retention is quite spectacular but the lacing is quite spotty. Maybe its the alcohol which wipes it clean.
The nose is a tad weak, and seems to lack depth. Faint dark malts and a light scent of dark fruits carefully waft through. A little doughiness and booze place themselves alongside. Its a little mild in the beginning, but on repeated inhalation, the aromas tend to stick on. Taking the first sip I notice that the carbonation makes the beer a little more aggressive on the palate.
Fruity and raisiny to the core, the flavours are well rounded and balanced, with ripe fruits layered against a biscuity malt background. The finish is spicy and fruity, leaving the palate moist and asking for more. As the beer warms the flavours deepen and the tenure on the palate increases.
I really enjoyed this beer, though I felt that the flavours could have been more panoramic, the malts more assertive and toasty. Anyway, its definitely there with some of the great dubbels out there.

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Photo of basica
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours out a copper brown with a thick, stable, clingy and milky head into my Trappist Achel chalice. The head was really a beauty (4.5)

S - Upfront nose of sweet dark fruits, caramel, spices and dark malts. A rich combination albeit not too strong (4.5)

T - Brown sugar sweetness and dark fruity goodness, main prunes, hit the palates right off, with caramel and liquorice decking the middle backed with a distinct flavour of dark malts. The alcohol was mildly noticeable in the middle towards the finish which was lightly sweet and lightly bitter, coming across as a very well-balanced and fairly complex Belgian dubbel. The after taste was surprisingly short for this brew style and may have been pretty perfected had it lasted longer. (4.5)

M - Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation; goes down with a foamy smoothness with a very light alcohol warming. It's noteworthy that slight thickness is felt at times on the body probably due to the sugars involved. (4)

D - Very drinkable due to the well-balanced nature and also sweet, fruity goodness in the taste. Well disguised alcohol content definitely adds a good bonus here. (4.5)

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Photo of Dubber55
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big time gusher. Pours a murky brown with some amber highlights. Tremendous carbonation. 2 fingers of off white head. Plenty of lacing and retention.

Aromas consist of a lot of clove and banana. Definitly has the distinctive aroma from Belgian yeast. Lots of fruity esters. Smells a lot like gingerbread and caramel. I am also getting lots of dark fruits like prunes, dates, figs.

Pretty complex brew. Rum soaked dark fruits like prunes, dates, figs. There is also some caramel and a bunch of licorice. Plenty of savory spices like clove and nutmeg, some gingerbread, banana and a bit of alcohol. The finish is sweet with some hop bitterness to balance things out.

The mouthfeel is on the thin side with some fairly high carbonation.

The drinkability is average. There are lots of flavors going on but everything is kept in check. The clove could be a bit much at times though. A very good dubbel

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank from my Achel chalice

A - Pours an exquisite dark brown ruby colour with a off white head that retains for a while before reducing to a film.

S - Spicey malts and caramel.

T - Dark fruit and raisins with spice and figs. But what is most impressive is it's balanced sugars, it is at its optiumum balance with flavours.

M - Smooth medium body and perfect carbonation.

D - Top marks again for this very solid bruin. This is so incredibly well balanced and makes it very complex.

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Photo of ghostwalker
3.91/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light brown body with a thick fluffy white head. Beauty in a glass.

S: Mild nose. Mostly malt.

T: Flavor is light spice with a fruity note. Mellow and light.

M: Light and zingy. Effervescent.

D: Very good. Light and easy to drink.

The least of the Trappists? Maybe, but it's still a nice tasty dubbel. Glad I tried it.

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Photo of Pittsburgh
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a large amount of foam, rose up very high above the glass, pretty amazing to me, takes the cake for the best pour I've seen, but I haven't tried that many Belgian beers yet.

Smells more fruity than I expected, pretty strong smell.

Taste, fruity combined with a malty finish at the end, very carbonated, a pretty strong tasting beer, starts really fruity and then moves to a stronger finish, stays with you a little while, very slight hint of bitterness as well. A complex beer with alot of different things going on, I think the alcohol comes through a little and sticks around a bit, not overwhelming though.

Also has a sticky quality to it, an almost piney quality.

I think this is the first authentic Belgian beer I have rated on this site, so I don't have a huge frame of reference....but all in all I liked the beer, and I would try other varieties in the future if given the opportunity.

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Photo of boss302
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Achel Brown, 8%ABV, 0.33L bottle, ~55F, poured into a tulip glass (from St Sebastiaan's in Silver Springs Fl). Achel uses yeast from Westmalle (Westvleteren also uses Westmalle yeast). The recipes for Achel were developed by monks/brewers from Westmalle and Rochefort. There is some good history with this brewery.

A Clear, dark cherry red when held to the light. Big thick head, fluffy, tan in color. Initially course bubbles, then they thin to a very fine texture. The bottle began foaming immediately after the cap was removed, but I had the glass ready and it was easily managed. Just be prepared. The head lasted the entire glass and the laccing was sticky. When I finished, there was still some lacing at the top of the glass from the initial pour.

S Chocolaty sweet aroma initially. Then some green apple and apricot and some sweet cotton candy aroma. Toward the middle of the beer, the fruity aromatics toned down and an aroma of alcohol was apparent.

T First sip for me seemed sweet and could have been from the strong fruity aroma, because toward the middle of the glass, the sweet impression disappeared. There is a lot of complexity. This beer is balanced, not sweet, not bitter. I couldn't detect hops, but know they must have been there.

M Carbonation is high and provides a carbonic acid bite as a result, but it fades quickly. Full bodied with a litte warmth at the end that is the only hint to this beers 8%ABV. There is a little stickiness that indicates a little residual sugar is present.

O An very good Belgian Brown. I am looking forward to another if I can find it (Our local shop stopped carrying it). Definitely recommend.

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

Probably the least known of the classical trappists.
This is my first experience with their brown ale.
I have to say: I was more impressed with this than with the Achel blond, that I've had several times.

Brown ale with a good head, excellent carbonation, good lacing in the glass.
Smell is interesting yeastiness, some dark fruits and malts.
Taste is slightly bitter sweet. It has typical characteristics of the dubbel/dark ales, with roasted malts, some coffee notes, and distinct browned sugar.
Aftertaste is bittersweet. Mouthfeel is medium body.
Good honest dubbel. Reminds me a lot of Westmalle Dubbel.
It is warming and easy drinkable. It does seem like a seasonal beer though: good on colder rainy days.

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Photo of FreshHawk
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark ruby chestnut with a slightly above average sized, bubbly and foamy off-white head. Good retention and a thick foamy layer of lacing with lacing sticking to the side of the glass.

S - Ripe apple and caramel are quiet strong. Toasted malt and spices are also pretty strong. Also a fair amount of dark fruit and candi sugar with a hint of yeast. Pretty typical Dubbel smell, with a slight hint of warming alcohol present too.

T - Dark fruit and dark malt bring up a lot of the flavor. Some toasted bread and barley along with caramel and a very slight hint of chocolate provide a base along with raisin and some date and fig. A touch of hoppiness comes out mid sip along with some spice and yeast. Not the most complex, but well balanced, smooth and fairly rich.

M - Medium body with moderate carbonation. Very smooth and rich and a bit creamy.

D - Nice drinkability. The alcohol is very well hidden and it is smooth and well balanced. Just complex enough to keep it interesting, and it is pretty easy on the palate. Overall a very enjoyable drink.

Notes: A nice beer and good example of a Dubbel. A touch thin and doesn't have that much in complexity of flavor, but it is an enjoyable beer to sip. Not amazing, although it does look very nice, but a solid beer. You could probably find Dubbels with a better value, and it isn't my favorite Trappist beer, but it is definitely worth a try.

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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 metter98
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured cloudy dark brown into a goblet with a thin, beige head. The level of carbonation appears to be moderate from the amount of bubbles rising near the edges of the glass. It has good head retention and a thin layers of bubbles consistently remained on the surface.
S: There's an aroma of sweet, caramel, dark malts with slight notes of dark fruits and spices.
T: There's a lot of sweetness in the flavor, but it's balanced enough by the hops so as not to come across as being too sweet. Some hints of hop flavors are noticeable in the finish; as the beer warms up the overall taste becomes sweet, including in the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and very smooth given the level of carbonation. The level of smoothness increases as the beer warms up.
D: It's very easy to drink, particularly as it warms up. Any traces of alcohol in the taste are very well masked.

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Trappist Achel 8° Bruin from Brouwerij der St. Benedictusabdij de Achelse
Beer rating: 4.13 out of 5 with 874 ratings