MiP (13995) - SÝnderborg, DENMARK - AUG 27, 2004
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: FEB 20, 2010 Bottle, 6.2%. Nice hop aroma, good and teaish. Cloudy orange colour. Big stable head. Highly carbonated. Nicely hoppy flavour with a pleasant bitterness. The flavour is not as aromatic as the aroma, but nice enough. The aftertaste is also quite bitter with a little aroma hops. 7 3 7 3 18
Bottle, 5.2%. Best before 1993, 17 years ago. Lemony brett aroma. Cloudy dark orange colour. Small stable creamy white head. The flavour is citric and bretty. A lot like the aroma. The aftertaste is slightly moldy, dry brettiness. The finishing bitterness gets a little rough. Definitely still drinkable. 7 3 6 3 16
badgerben (4549) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - AUG 19, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JAN 28, 2010 Original Rating, August 18, 2004: Pours a lovely golden color with a towering head in my Duvel glass. The aroma is fantastic. Itís loaded with dried fruits, fresh bananas, hops, and an every so slight alcohol aroma. Mmmm... the taste. Taste? Umm, hello? Where did it go? This is possibly the first beer Iíve had that looked and smelled fantastic, but just didnít taste like much of anything. It had a slight alcoholic kick to it, but nothing else. It felt like cream though, just wonderful. Iím very disappointed in the taste. The bottle had aged for a year in not the best conditions; I will try a fresher or better aged bottle.
Re-Rating #1: February 11, 2005; Bottled on 10.03.04: The view and aroma were about the same this time around, plus some citrus tones. The taste actually existed. A verty strange mix of sweet pine resin, hops, alcohol and bread. Very nice. Itís not the end-all-be-all, but a damn fine beer. 8/5/8/4/17
Re-rating #2: January 12, 2010; Bottled on 29.04.2009: Okay, Iíve gone back and forth on this beer. First round wasnít good, second was pretty killer, third and forth sucked. Copper color with a large head that quickly fades to nothing. Aroma of barn, hay and lemon. Very dry malt and wheat flavor. Lots of hay, barn and mustiness. A little raw grain. Quite perfumy. Can definitely taste the dry hopping. Very bitter and earthy floral hits. To me, it tasted like a solid saison, spiked with Brett. Which I am incredibly sick of. The bone dry barn with hints of "Iím going to taste like vomit in a few years". Halfway through the bottle, it just wasnít good any more. This is my last go with this beer.
Aarleks (409) - Sydney, AUSTRALIA - AUG 19, 2004
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle: Poured cloudy amber with a big off-white head that lasted well. Intense aroma of banana lolly, some mustiness and anitseptic notes. Not much depth though. Flavour was slightly sour, quite spicey, and had some burnt fruit characteristics (gooseberries?). A lingering harsh bitterness further took away from this legend, although it was nicely creamy. Dissapointed, but will rate again.
frankR (145) - Davis, California, USA - AUG 11, 2004
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Perfume aroma. Was really disappointed with this one. Dry and too dominated by the repungnant perfume flavors. It may grow on my, maybe I was in the wrong mood.
NYHarvey (2153) - New York, New York, USA - AUG 11, 2004
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: DEC 12, 2005 December 12th 2005 re-rate.
I still smell something antiseptic, but now Iím getting a faint mustiness (Saison-ish) as well. There is just something I donít know...like funky rubber and chemicals going on. Iíve been aging some and keep having them to see when it will click, but it doesnít. The feel of the beer is excellent as is the appearance, but the flavor just doesnít click for me. Maybe is just needs to age before the flavor gets there...Iíve always had relatively fresh bottles.
Bought a bottle at ABC Liquors in Tampa.
Smelled like alcohol and something antiseptic.
Cloudy Amber color with a fairly modest head compared to most Belgian beers.
Tasted like almond extract....the concentrated stuff...with hints of all spice and sugar. Taste was odd.
I didnít like this much. It was certainly different which saved me from hating it, but I found more off putting things than compelling things about it.
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - AUG 9, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Color is a pure golden, edging into orange. Head is full, and frothy white. Aroma is overwhelming and enticing from afar: extraordinarily spicy, very enticing and seductive, though I havenít even even brought this brew close to my nose yet. An arousing blend of the sweet and the sour, with some citric notes speaking up here and there. Loads of sugar and spice, and, well, everything nice. Fierce hops on the palate, and an excellent texture, great hop bite and play upon the tongue. Full of body and flavor. Long lasting finish. Delicious, with plenty of citric tang. Deeply satisfactory, very mellow and pacifying.This is a brew that tastes of the history it contains. A very unique, pleasurable and pacifying beverage.
Walt (2449) - Austin, Texas, USA - AUG 7, 2004
4.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: APR 1, 2010 Pours crisp amber color with a beautiful lacing...smells hoppy and ever so complex...taste is full of so many different flavors: hoppy, bitter, vanilla, dry, oily...this is utterly fantastic!
04.01.05 Just opened a fresher bottle...beautiful pour...hazy copper with a dense tan head...smell is sweet bubble gum, brett, nice delicate hops...taste is sweet and grassy at first with delicate hints of sour brett...then the nice hoppy subtle bitterness starts...what a divine beer.
grat (433) - ST. Louis, Missouri, USA - AUG 5, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: SEP 17, 2004 An excellent diversion from most trappist brews! Lovely diamonique amber color. Shiny head. Nose of black olives, musk and hardwood. Same flavors in the palate only much hoppier. This is a monstrously good, monstrously complex ale.
SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - AUG 4, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 26, 2006 In the bottle. Giant mega-godzilla head of power. Best good head. Run for your lives, Orval is loose!!!! Incredible aroma of medicine smell. Way more bitter than any other Belgian that I have had. In fact, Iím a little disappointed that the bitter flavor masks some of the complexities that struggle to break out. Palate that just blossoms in your mouth. Pretty cool shaped bottle for homebrewers. The lace was not just lace- it leaves white woolly worms on the side of the glass. Very distinctive.
UPDATE 6/5/6: In the bottle at the 2006 Huber Haus Belgian Trappist Ale Tasting. I think I like this even more than before. Pinkish yellow amber in color. Medium-sized off white head. This is a bronchodilating beer. Acidic sourness. Cloves. Earthy. Downright butt-like. Flavor has some amaretto in it. Sourness and tartness. Tastes a bit like Dr. Pepper. Multiple waves of flavor end with a strong bittering finish. This is like nothing else Iíve ever tasted. A truly one-of-a-kind.
HermanW (1043) - Coevorden, NETHERLANDS - AUG 4, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
These monks know how to build a foam. Perfect. The smell is very fine. The first taste is a bit bitter but after the first taste it is nice. A perfect beer.