Westvleteren XII expectations.

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by jpfromb, Dec 17, 2012.

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  1. jpfromb

    jpfromb Initiate (142) Apr 9, 2010 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    Now that the dust has settled and for those who might actually open and taste a Westvleteren for the first time. Do you think the reviews will be higher or lower as expectations are exceeded or perhaps not met?
  2. Daemose

    Daemose Devotee (426) Oct 3, 2011 Texas
    Beer Trader

    Lower. It's just a quad. meh.
    AmitC, dennis3951, 2beerdogs and 4 others like this.
  3. TWStandley

    TWStandley Crusader (763) Jan 15, 2008 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    I challenge everyone who purchased the Westy bricks to side by side it with a Rochefort 10. Matter o' fact, do a blind tasting.

    Not discrediting Westy at all - it is phenomenal. Just curious as to what others think.
    yamar68, alamode, xnicknj and 7 others like this.
  4. feedmechili

    feedmechili Initiate (0) Jan 1, 2010 Kansas

    Three of us did a blind comparison of Westy XII, St. Bernardus 12, and Rochefort 10. None of us had previously had Westy.
    One person chose the Westy as best. One tied it with St. Bernardus. One picked St. Bernardus. Rochefort 10 finished a distant third side-by-side with the others.
  5. Grohnke

    Grohnke Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2009 Illinois

    lower, the signature beer advocate "rarity premium" is eliminated
  6. itsthepleats

    itsthepleats Initiate (0) Mar 19, 2012 Ohio

    The hype should improve the flavor significantly, right?
  7. meanmutt

    meanmutt Meyvn (1,007) Feb 6, 2012 Ohio
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    I'm doing my blind tasting next weekend...the main reason I wanted the Westy was for this exact purpose. I love Rochefort 10 and I'm curious to see which one I like better.
    Squidly and TWStandley like this.
  8. JulianB

    JulianB Initiate (0) Feb 1, 2012 South Carolina

    We did a blind tasting of Westvleteren XII, Rochefort 10, Pannepot 2011, Straffe Hendrik, St. Barnardus Abt 12, and a friend's homebrewed Belgian strong dark ale. Of a dozen or so people, only one preferred the Westy XII. My clear favorite was the Pannepot, with the Westy XII in 2nd.
    Brunite likes this.
  9. joeebbs

    joeebbs Initiate (0) Apr 29, 2009 Pennsylvania

    The problem with this is that someone will undoubtedly say that the Westy in the packs is not the same that you pick up at the brewery. Which may be true. I remember when these packs were supposed to come out in the spring, then summer now its December. It's possible those packs have been sitting around somewhere they shouldn't have been for a long time.
    Ford, RobertColianni and ant880 like this.
  10. JulianB

    JulianB Initiate (0) Feb 1, 2012 South Carolina

    Did anybody else's Westy bottle gush upon opening? I had some foam hit the table as I scrambled to get it poured into the glass.
  11. Crookdrain

    Crookdrain Aspirant (286) Jan 13, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    Tasted side by side with a St. Bernardus 12 Abt. I actually enjoyed the Westy more, but my friend swears they were pretty much indistinguishable aside from the physical characteristics.

    Worht $85 ($92 w/tax) - no. But Glad to have finally tried it.
    Ford likes this.
  12. MusicaleMike

    MusicaleMike Initiate (0) Mar 17, 2008 Pennsylvania

    Haha, your profile pic is amazing....
    arniepnminne and Jules11788 like this.
  13. mcaulifww

    mcaulifww Initiate (0) Aug 18, 2011 Virginia

    I don't know that westy can sit around for too long judging to 20 year old "oh face" bottles that show up all the time
    Brunite and jmalex like this.
  14. Photekut

    Photekut Initiate (0) Mar 31, 2006 Tennessee

    Lower, now it is only a shelf wale.

    More people will realize they WAY overspent when they could have bought a shit ton of St Bernardus 12 instead.
  15. drgarage

    drgarage Initiate (0) Aug 19, 2008 California

    I see these derogatory posts about Westy XII all the time. I've had all the big quads, including all the pannepot variants, and Westy XII is my favorite, with Rochefort one of my least favorite. It's for a very simple reason: Westy is drier, which helps both mouthfeel and flavor, while Rochefort seems to have a really high SG that makes it too sticky. Just one man's opinion.
    palma, BlastBeats, cavedave and 4 others like this.
  16. meanmutt

    meanmutt Meyvn (1,007) Feb 6, 2012 Ohio
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    Fair enough...but it will have to do, as I am probably never gonna make it to the abbey.
  17. TWStandley

    TWStandley Crusader (763) Jan 15, 2008 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    What "derogatory" post are you referring to?
    feedmechili likes this.
  18. digita7693

    digita7693 Disciple (397) Jan 19, 2010 Germany
    Beer Trader

    Did this on Friday, with 3 Bas, maybe the 6th time I have done this.
    St Bernardus 2010, Westvleteren 2010, Rochefort 2011.
    All 3 picked Westvleteren 12 as their favorite, we did the tasting at The Commons brewery, and let someone do the blind taste afterwards, we left him on his own, heard no comments from the 3 who had done the tasting already, and he picked Westvleteren as well.

    Personally, I think St Bernardus is a bit sweater, Rochefort a bit spicier and Westvleteren nicely balanced between the 2, after a year or 2 especially. Though I might prefer Westvleteren 8 to the 12 and I definitely prefer Rochefort 6 to the 10.

    Bitterbill and TWStandley like this.
  19. Zhiguli

    Zhiguli Initiate (140) Jul 12, 2012 California

    Didn't buy into the brick as i've had it once before and didn't think it warrants the price for me. Probably would have bought it if i'd never had it and would have drank it with tears in my eyes as hype and rarity sure does taste otherworldly. Immediately after I would have thought that I should have bought two charcoal grilled steaks at Musso & Frank instead.

    That first experience is a must though i suppose as we're al overly curious mfers.
    TWStandley likes this.
  20. GodlessWatermelon

    GodlessWatermelon Initiate (0) Apr 12, 2012 Maryland

    It was a good Belgian quad, about what I expected. A few coworkers and I were given a bottle which we tried the other night. If it was sold as a single, I would have probably dropped the ~14-15 bucks to try it, but I don't think I could justify $85 for a six.
  21. stupac2

    stupac2 Zealot (518) Feb 22, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    People stood in line to get it. They should go up.

    Then again pretty much anyone who cares about reviewing should've been able to get it a long-ass time ago, so maybe there won't be many new reviews. (It probably doesn't work that way, though.)
    TWStandley and jtmartino like this.
  22. RichardMNixon

    RichardMNixon Zealot (515) Jun 24, 2012 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I was planning to open mine at 6 month intervals, still mulling over the merits of a t=0 sample.
  23. dickieb

    dickieb Disciple (302) Mar 26, 2006 Rhode Island

    Its an excellent beer, but I have had a westy A Rochefort 10 and St Bernardus 12 and while they are not exactly the same they are very similar and all equally as good.
  24. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) Dec 10, 2011 California

    Plan to do a blind tasting with 6 to 8 people with 8 to 10 quads in Jan. Going to spend the coin and round up all the big boys and see how it all plays out. Min 3oz pouring of each (depending on bottles) so no thimble pours plus I want enough so people can go back and compare beers side by side/blind if needed.

    I split a brick with a friend, made the cost easier to swallow and this way many more people can figure out what they like.
  25. digita7693

    digita7693 Disciple (397) Jan 19, 2010 Germany
    Beer Trader

    The beer is most likely already a year old by now. Check the bottle date on the cap Day/Month/Year and subtract 3 from the year, and you will get the bottle date. eg 17/9/2014 means it was bottled on Sept 17 2011.

  26. jtmartino

    jtmartino Initiate (0) Dec 11, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Do physical characteristics include taste? Because they are very different tasting beers.

    I've done the blind taste test thing. Twice (different versions of Pannepot, St. Bernadus 12, Rochefort 10 each time). Westy is a clear favorite for me, but not everyone will think so. And the people buying packs on craigslist and ebay for $300+ are f'king idiots, especially you can still get the gift pack for less from online Belgian vendors.
  27. Prospero

    Prospero Savant (953) Jul 27, 2010 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Westy 12 hands down is the best beer I've ever had. I've had PtY, and a majority of the 'top beers', this takes the prize. I love Rochefort 10 because it's available on the shelf and amazing beer as well, Westy is worth $14/bottle... not sure it's worth $30-$40/bottle, but it's pretty amazing.
  28. M1A2

    M1A2 Disciple (322) Jan 15, 2012 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    ^^^ THIS....Pannepot is one of the most under the radar quads out there! It is bad ass IMO.
  29. alexipa

    alexipa Devotee (439) Oct 7, 2011 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    St. Bernardus Abt 12 is the winner for me. It's a bit on the sweet side as others have mentioned and I like that. No one is talking about it here, but I think La Terrible from Unibroue is right up there as well.
  30. NickMunford

    NickMunford Savant (978) Oct 2, 2006 Wyoming

    I'm going to do this as well, in a week or two. Not blind though.
  31. jroberge1981

    jroberge1981 Initiate (167) Apr 4, 2009 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    The last time I had a Westvleteren 12 was in Belgium and it was eye opening - of course the atmosphere added a lot to the experience and it was early in my beer exploration. My biggest reason to grab a brick was to drink it more objectively and see if it still holds up to what I remember (probably not) and also to do the exact blind tasting a lot of folks are proposing (Rochefort 10, St. Bernardus 12, Westvleteren 12, and maybe a Sixth Glass for fun). For a one time shot, why not? The worst that happens is I drink some over-hyped but still tasty beer.

    That being said, reviews almost have to trend down. Unprecedented availability is hard to overcome compared to the previous mystique.
    BedetheVenerable likes this.
  32. luisc123

    luisc123 Initiate (173) Oct 20, 2011 California

    I thought it was the equal of St. Bernardus 12. Gotta go get me some Rochefort 10 and compare again.
  33. foobula

    foobula Initiate (0) Dec 14, 2009 Illinois

    Mine say 01.08.15 so only 4.5 months old
    Squidly likes this.
  34. BobZ

    BobZ Zealot (508) Jun 24, 2009 Massachusetts

    Not really sure this beer can possibly meet the expectation many will have. Most times, I think you've got to like the style in order to like the beer, someone (or a group of somebody's) telling you you're supposed to like it shouldn't be enough.

    There have been dozen of threads over the years about which is best, which is closest, which is better.... etc. etc. etc.

    I am far from an expert on the topic but have been lucky enough to have Westvleteren multiple times, and lucky enough to do blind taste comparisons (when that made sense) as well as many side-by-side tastings.

    I considered the Westvleteren 12 the best beer I ever had (again the Quad/BSDA is also my personal favorite style of beer) until I had a side-by-side this year with Pannepot 2007.

    To my taste, the exceptional characteristic of Westvleteren is the smoothness (mouthfeel), coupled with the depth and complexity of flavor. Rochefort 10 has the complexity (if not more) but not the smoothness. The vintage Pannepot was just so damn over-the-top complex that I favored it, but even then the Westvleteren 12 was smoother.

    Flavor-wise, as close as I find the St. Bernardus Abt. 12, the Val Dieu Grand Cru is much closer IMO.

  35. BierGartenok

    BierGartenok Initiate (0) Apr 4, 2009 Oklahoma

    Funny no one has mentioned La Trappe Quad by Koningshoeven http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/184/1402. I have had Westy in Westy (pic in my avatar) and many other times during my "drinking career," Rochefort 10, Achel, St. Bernardus and numerous other "Quad" style Belgian Strong Ales. I have to say, that for a readily available beer, the La Trappe has become one of my favorites...and I would rival it against Westvleteren any day.
  36. Zimbo

    Zimbo Initiate (0) Aug 7, 2010 United Kingdom (Scotland)

    Fresh, Westvleteren 12 is pretty easily pushed around by Rochefort 10 and St Bernardus Abt.12. But after two to three years of age its a completely different story.
  37. MCImes

    MCImes Disciple (353) Dec 31, 2010 Connecticut

    To prepare to drink one of my 3 Westys I bought a St bernardus 12, Rochefort 8, Rochefort 10, Orval and Achel. I know orval and Achel are not Quads but I bought them anyways just to revisit beers that I havent had in a couple years and to gain a better understanding of the diversity in trappist beers.

    I didnt drink them blind or side by side, but Im still confident saying:

    1. I dont care for Orval or Achel. Lighter Belgian beers are not very good IMO. Id take almost any craft brew from america instead. Light Belgian beers, Trappist or not, I dont care for. Although I do love most dark Belgian beers...which leads me to...

    2. Westy 12 is an awesome, world class beer, but not much different from rochefort 10 or st bernardus. Considering the difficulty of getting westy 12 and its cost, I'd take a 6er of Rochefort 8 and spend another $45 on other great beer and feel better about it after having tried the Westy.

    3. Of all the beers, Its a tie between Rochefort 8 and Westy 12 for my favorite Trappist beer. considering the rochefort 8 is available anytime for $6/bottle, Ill happily be buying more of that instead of tracking down more westy through trades.

    4. Im very very very glad I got 3 bottles of Westy and am very happy to try it. It is something any beer geek should try at least once. Its a really really really good beer...Not the best in the world IMO though. If you didnt get any, just get some rochefort 10 and know that you're drinking a beer that tastes 93% the same and you saved yourself 66% per bottle.

    5. As for the ranking, as others have said, it will undoubtedly go down. Its a great beer that deserves to be in the top 100, but top 10...? Its not in mine. Close, but not in my top 10. If you fed me coors in the belgain county side at an ancient monastery and told me I could never get this beer anywhere else, I bet I'd review it through the roof just based on my experience of drinking it.

    6. Overall i give it a 9.6/10.
    2beerdogs, KWMiles and ChicagoNick like this.
  38. mmikey8

    mmikey8 Disciple (305) Aug 2, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    Right on! Even one year makes a difference. The "plum" flavor is amazing with a little age. Something Rochefort and St. Bern. don't have.
    DaveONan and BobZ like this.
  39. itk1

    itk1 Initiate (145) Aug 30, 2005 Florida
    Beer Trader

    I skipped the madness and went for some Rochefort 10
  40. drgarage

    drgarage Initiate (0) Aug 19, 2008 California

    The post above mine, for example. Or any talking about suckers who would be happier with Rochefort 10 or Abt 12. I've had those beers many times, and neither tastes anywhere near as good as Westy to me. To the poit that the only other quads I like are Pannepot and La Trappe. I'm similar with tripels, oddly enough. St. bernardus is the only one I like at all (and I love it!), no matter how similar the other tripels allegedly are (I've heard Achel would make me happy, though).

    All I was really saying is that people are usually better off assuming other BAs have a sense of their own tastes and aren't just throwing their cash after hype. I knew exactly what I was getting in Westy, and I was totally happy to drop my $85.
    kojevergas likes this.
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