Gazza (726) - Worcester, Worcestershire, ENGLAND - APR 5, 2004
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Another Trappiste which, in my opinion, has become less great in recent years. A golden beer which still has a hopsack and horseblanket nose – very interesting. The flavour seems less complex than it used to be, maybe a few of the layers have gone? It still has a rich bitterness and some hop resins and that Lambic-like flavour lurking in the background, but somehow I don’t think it’s as good as it used to be. Still good, but not now great – unfortunately.
atpayne (615) - Zionsville, Indiana, USA - APR 3, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Hazy Carmel color with a large off white head consisting of large bubbles. The aroma is complex; sour, fruit, and yeast all at once. It even has hints of a red wine aroma. The taste is quite dry and noticabley bitter. The bitterness lingers providing a nice clean mouthfeel.
wildchefbill (245) - Sarasota, Florida, USA - MAR 31, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours cloudy orange with a full white head. Aroma is strong; tart, spice, grass and yeast. Flavor is complex. Sweet, with a spice jolt. A bitter, citrus finish with a dry, long aftertaste provides a nice balance. Mouthfeel is very alive and champagne-like, medium bodied. An evcellent beer.
Crockett (1001) - Southampton,Ontario, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 30, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Mildly hazey orange with the biggest thick fluffy head I have ever seen. Lots of citric hop florals. Flavours are mildly spiced, maybe some clove. Lots of tangerine and honey. Very dry hop character.
MMM...Beer (385) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - MAR 24, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Great beer! Really wish I had tasted this one a long time ago. Starting to see why Trappists are such a big deal. Orval has a nice, porous, tan head above a orangeish cloudy body (due to being bottled conditioned). An initial mustiness on the nose (almost as if you were in the very crypts of Orval) which quickly opens up to an attack of fruit on both the nose and palate (similar to a lambic but more suttle in power and complex in variety). Carbonation gives it a nice mouthfeel and a great finish. Definitely going to have this one again and push it on friends.
bitter (1136) - Henderson, Nevada, USA - MAR 23, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: FEB 9, 2005 bottled: only on tap at the orval abbey. hazy caramel color with a tan white rocky head that takes a bit but disipates....in the nose earthy fruit and bread, cloves, bananas...on the palate wheat undertones with nice malt punch, perfectly bodied. goes down without a peep. higher alcohol is nice and sweet but not tasted at all. this is a great beer and easy to drink and not overpowering.
jde123 (756) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - MAR 22, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: OCT 12, 2004 Complex complex complex. Flavors on top of flavors. Giant head sits atop a mahogany body, great aroma, smells like apples, oranges, and plums had a party. very pleasant. I really enjoyed this one, but it does not compare to other, better belgian ales, I don't know why this is so expensive.
skaughty (641) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - MAR 22, 2004
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 21, 2004 Re-rate Each bottle seems distinct. It was even livlier on the palate this time around, with a hint of banana. The head was like a soft serve ice cream cone. Orval is so dry that the flavor just melts right into the finish. To work this magic into 6.9 ABV is divine.
Easily the most unique of the trappist beers. Pours light amber with medium but fizzy head. Aroma is floral and earthy, with notes of peat and pine. The flavor (like a mossy grapefruit) is one of the few that I could pick blind every time.
Worth a try, and I can see how some are fanatical about it.
antisnobJP (275) - St. Michael, Minnesota, USA - MAR 21, 2004
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Hazy bright orange amber color. Huge frothy billowing white head, like a bubble bath. Intense citrus and floral aroma with an underlying sweetness to it, like Hi-C orange in the background. Highly carbonated. Hoppy and dry for sure, with plenty of bitterness and sweetness at the same time. How does that work? Phenolic,alcoholic, citric, a LOT going on here. Maybe too complex for my malty English ale loving palate. But this is definitely refreshing and eye opening to all true beer lovers out there. A must try. But I'm not sure I would drink very often. I have finished it, and the lacing still remains from top to bottom. Cool.
PrimeMinister (138) - Quebec, CANADA - MAR 20, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Not an easy beer for a beginner... This is a very complex product. Every aspect of it makes it unique. I know nothing like it although there are pale imitations. The aspect when served in it's appropriate glass is very exciting. A nice head with very rich bubbles. The color is an amazing orange which reminds me of the Dominus Vobiscum Triple. At first, this beer sends intense malty signals to my tongue. An extraordinary fruity and rich after taste. Complexity evolves as the product warms up. One of the best trappist I've tasted so far.