Westvleteren 12 vs Rochefort 10 and Bernardus 12

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by bochman, Mar 15, 2013.

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  1. bochman

    bochman Initiate (0) Oct 18, 2006 Florida

    I am having a blind taste test to see if the most talked about beer is really all that it is cracked up to be. Three glasses 1,2,3. Three beer bottles hidden in the next room marked 1,2,3. There will be three rounds and evaluations made. It will be recommended to consult Beer Advocate or any other site for help. Have any of you done the exact same test or something similar. I am an old guy beer veteran and my two co-tasters will be young twenty something's. Let's see what happens. I will post the results here later today.
    sholle, spookyspeeg and itchytasty like this.
  2. JWing

    JWing Initiate (185) Sep 3, 2012 Virginia

    Having tried the Rochefort 10 and Bernardus 12, I am very interested to see your results.
  3. bochman

    bochman Initiate (0) Oct 18, 2006 Florida

    The results were close. Westy was by far the most distinctive, easiest to recognize and it was my favorite overall pick. One other picked Westy and another chose the Rochefort. I am still undecided if the difference in quality that we noted justifies the $15 per bottle and rare availability as well. These three were all great brews. What do you have to say out there in beer land?
  4. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,106) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Did you shoot a video like this guy?

  5. RobertColianni

    RobertColianni Zealot (524) Nov 4, 2008 Pennsylvania

    Rochefort 10 wins every time in a landslide.
  6. RyFikes

    RyFikes Initiate (0) Jan 3, 2013 New York

    I haven't had all three, but Rochefort 10 is the greatest beer I've ever had.
  7. coachdicarlo

    coachdicarlo Initiate (0) Apr 20, 2012 Missouri

    We did it and added Chimay Blue to the mix. Westy 12 won.
    azorie, hallandoates and kojevergas like this.
  8. eatabagofbooger

    eatabagofbooger Initiate (60) Mar 27, 2009 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    I did this recently. Rochefort had a slightly better flavor (I'm a huge fan of their yeast strain). But St Bernardus won overall based on mouthfeel (so creamy!). Westy came in third.

    Happy too see other opinions here and excited to see how your tasting goes!
    FlussigkeitMut and semibaked like this.
  9. YieldToNothing

    YieldToNothing Initiate (0) Mar 13, 2013 New York

    i have tried all 3, never in a blind taste test though

    my order is
    abt 12
    rochefort 10
    westy 12
  10. matedog

    matedog Initiate (58) Jan 25, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    The important take away is that the hassle and money required to obtain Westy 12 is not really worth it.
  11. YieldToNothing

    YieldToNothing Initiate (0) Mar 13, 2013 New York

    this. i only bought two bottles because i was in a bottle shop in brussels that had a few on the shelf. 15 euro a pop. drank one after i got back to new york and liked it a lot, but not best in the world status.
    still sitting on another one, hoping it blows me away but its doubtful
  12. beerme411

    beerme411 Initiate (0) Sep 28, 2010 California

    Blind tastes test should include at least 2 glasses of each beer. You can split the bottle between two glasses. Or even have the number of glasses be unknown to the tasters and have them sort out which ones are similar. Like have 1 glass with west 12, 3 with rochefort 10 and 2 with abt 10. That way you can see if there really is as much of a difference as you think.
  13. coachdicarlo

    coachdicarlo Initiate (0) Apr 20, 2012 Missouri

    If you have Westy 12 on draft at the monastery, you will absolutely determine that it is the best beer in the world and there could not possibly be a better beer in existence.
  14. drgarage

    drgarage Initiate (0) Aug 19, 2008 California

    I did this on New Year's. Westy won in a landslide, with La Trappe Quad coming in second. Chimay Blue was a distant last, and Rochefort 10 just barely ahead of it -- everyone hated its sticky sweet finish.
  15. highdesertdrinker

    highdesertdrinker Disciple (367) Nov 5, 2012 Arizona
    Beer Trader

    I haven't had the Westy but I prefer the St. Bernardus over the Rochefort by a slim margin. I think the St. Bernie is a little sweeter and I can pick the fruit out a little better on my pallete while the Rochefort has a little more of a Cognac/Brandy flavor with some serious heat. I would happily take either one anytime.
  16. jbertsch

    jbertsch Meyvn (1,095) Dec 14, 2008 Massachusetts

    A while back I did a quick side-by-side test (not blind) between Westy12 and St.B 12. I chose Westy.

    But this weekend I'm doing a proper blind test and throwing Pannepot into the mix.
  17. KWMiles

    KWMiles Initiate (0) Oct 23, 2012 Minnesota

    What kind of IPA are these beers?
    KBlodorn, archimon, MrDell and 65 others like this.
  18. kodt

    kodt Zealot (514) Mar 6, 2013 Illinois

    I did this same test, but also included La Trappe Quadrupel.

    Westy 12 won, I think three placed it first and one placed it second.

    Rochefort 10 was second, with one first place, two second place, and a last place.

    St Bernardus Abt 12 was third with four third place rankings

    La Trappe Quadrupel was fourth with three fourth place and one second place.

    One guy for some reason changed his ranking on La Trappe right at the end to move it up to second and move Rochefort to last... I think he was just sick of drinking. Shortly after he collapsed on the couch. Probably shouldn't have have started with 2 Hopslams and a Lagunitas Sucks...
  19. Rohkey

    Rohkey Initiate (0) Jan 13, 2013 Michigan

    I can't imagine how good these must taste. I disliked quads the first time I had one a few months ago, but my taste has evolved and La Trappe's quad is probably the best beer I have ever had. I have a couple St. Bernardus 12s and Rochefort 10s in my cellar, but am waiting for a friend to come over to enjoy them with...
  20. tectactoe

    tectactoe Initiate (0) Mar 20, 2012 Michigan

    Did Westy 12 and Abt 12 side by side once. Could barely tell a difference - both were amazing. That said, based on availability and price, Abt 12 was the winner. I like both of them more than Rochefort 10.
  21. SadMachine

    SadMachine Meyvn (1,339) Mar 14, 2011 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    You sure you didn't mix up the St. Bernardus and the Rochefort?! I've had St. Bernardus multiple times, and while it's a very good beer it definitely does NOT have a creamy mouthfeel! It has been pretty carbonated each time I've had it, whereas the Rochefort 10 that I had (for the first time) two nights ago had one of, if not the creamiest mouthfeel out of all the beers I've ever had in any style! If you prefer St. Bernardus that's fine, but I can't help but think from your description that you somehow mixed up the two beers!
  22. checktherhyme

    checktherhyme Initiate (152) Apr 8, 2008 Washington


    I have done this exact blind tasting a few times and Westy typically wins. All fantastic beers though.
  23. socon67

    socon67 Poo-Bah (1,648) Jun 18, 2010 New York

    I am planning this very tasting with my local group. I've had Rochefort 10 and loved it, and St. Bernardus is a truly incredible quadrupel. I was able to get a bottle of Westy XII to do this, and it is one of the best tastings to compare beers within the same style.
  24. smokeypeat

    smokeypeat Initiate (0) Jan 23, 2010 Maryland
    Beer Trader

    I've done this one as well and Westy 12 was the winner in our group. That said it still amazes me that everyone talks about 12 and not 8. Personally I find 8 to be a better beer, and while not everyone in our group picked 12 as the number 1 quad beer, 8 was the unanimous winner in the dubbel category.

    If you are going to the trouble to get some 12 track down the 8 as well. It's usually cheaper and it's an amazing beer in it's own right.
    fox227, sfprint and jbsteiny like this.
  25. oldp0rt

    oldp0rt Initiate (0) Feb 24, 2011 Quebec (Canada)

    Rochefort is always on top when fresh..

    Once aged, it's a different story.
    Titans77 likes this.
  26. swetsastonic

    swetsastonic Initiate (194) Mar 22, 2012 New Jersey

    we recently did a blind taste test of westy 12 and st. bernardus 12. 8 guys. 7 chose westy.

    but we all agreed that they were extremely similar.
  27. Raime

    Raime Meyvn (1,248) Jun 4, 2012 Michigan
    Beer Trader

    Rochefort, Then Chimay, Then Abt 12. Haven't had Westy 12, and at the price I doubt I ever will
  28. kodt

    kodt Zealot (514) Mar 6, 2013 Illinois

    Ahh.. pretty sure I had a Rochefort with 1-2 years on it in my tasting.
    jtdolla911 likes this.
  29. papaholmz

    papaholmz Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2012 South Carolina
    Beer Trader

    I'm a Westy fan (obviously), and in the 3 blind taste tests I've had with Westy 12, St. Bernardus ABT 12, and Rochefort 10 I chose Westy 12 all three times. Then again I've had enough Westy by now that I can usually tell which one is Westy. That is not to say the St. Bernardus and Rochefort are not amazing brews, because they absolutely are.
    Zimbo, coachdicarlo and jtdolla911 like this.
  30. oldp0rt

    oldp0rt Initiate (0) Feb 24, 2011 Quebec (Canada)

    Oh yeah I'm not saying rochefort isn't good with some age on it, I just think westy 12 gets better and better with time.

    I'll still have Rochefort over it any day also because of the cost and availability.
  31. BierMeJohn

    BierMeJohn Disciple (339) Feb 9, 2013 Maryland
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    I go back and forth on the Westy 12 vs. Westy 8.

    I would have to say Rochefort 10 is my favorite quad.

    Some friends and I are planning an aged tasting... Westy 12 vs. La Trappe Quad. Westy 12 gets really good with age, should be interesting!!
  32. gshak

    gshak Zealot (512) Feb 20, 2011 Texas

    Quadruple IPAs...that's four times the hops, in case you were wondering :stuck_out_tongue:
    luwak and Bugs318 like this.
  33. KWMiles

    KWMiles Initiate (0) Oct 23, 2012 Minnesota

    Historically, these beers traveled from the UK to India and back twice. Hence the name.
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  34. eatabagofbooger

    eatabagofbooger Initiate (60) Mar 27, 2009 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    Yep-totally sure. I've had both a number of times since, and they've become two of my favorite beers. As I said, I love the yeasty character of the Rochefort, but it seems overcarbed to me. Combined with the more pronounced alcohol and spiciness, it comes across a bit sharp. Abt 12, on the other hand, is one of the softest, creamiest beers I've ever had. It isn't syrupy or undercarbed, but creamy, almost in a frothy way. This is why the Abt 12 edged out the Rochefort in the blind tasting and why I still prefer it by a hair, but they're both phenomenal beers!
  35. papaholmz

    papaholmz Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2012 South Carolina
    Beer Trader

    I agree, ABT 12 is definitely more creamy than a Rochefort 10, in my opinion.
  36. dar482

    dar482 Poo-Bah (3,476) Mar 9, 2007 New York
    Beer Trader

    Not an IPA, double IPA, or barrel aged stout. Don't care about thread.

    And in all seriousness, I was thinking about doing this too. I'm not going to try getting Westy, so what should I throw in there? Maybe Three Philosphers (See how Americans match up), Chimay?
  37. kodt

    kodt Zealot (514) Mar 6, 2013 Illinois

    Gulden Draak 9000
  38. papaholmz

    papaholmz Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2012 South Carolina
    Beer Trader

    In my opinion American "Belgian Style Quads" can't compare to the real thing. 3 Philosophers is a good brew but it in no way compares to the likes of Rochefort, St Bernardus, or even La Trappe. If you're going to do this, I would recommend choosing another Belgian, maybe Pannepot.
  39. jimmy666

    jimmy666 Initiate (0) Jun 20, 2010 Maryland

  40. Sneers

    Sneers Initiate (0) Dec 27, 2009 Pennsylvania

    I've done various side-by-sides with strong, dark Belgian ales: Westy/Abt, 12/Roch 10, all 3 Rocheforts, some more random mixes (from La Chouffe, Des Rocs, La Trappe, Gouden Carolous, among others), Belgian- vs. American-made, etc. None were blind, however.

    I've found that in any given tasting, the age of the beer seems to have a bigger factor in determining how much we wind up liking it that the brewery who produced it. In fact, given that these beers are known to have such profound changes due to aging (and hence being appealing to age in the first place), I think it's really hard to say X<Y<Z in general. Plus, why take such a scientific approach to the tasting if you're going to wind up making a blanket statement that doesn't account for the age of the beer. If you want to be definitive, you've got to get three bottles of reasonably similar age, which, for me anyways, can be hard to come by.
    TongoRad and JackHorzempa like this.
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