Brewed by Brasserie dOrval
Style: Belgian Ale
Florenville - Villers-d.-Orval, Belgium


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 4037   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.92   EST. CALORIES: 186   ABV: 6.2%
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In contrast to all the others, the Orval Trappist brewery makes only one beer for the general public. It has an intensely aromatic and dry character. Between the first and second fermentations there is also an additional dry-hopping process. Through this the beer acquires its pronounced hoppy aroma and extra dry taste.
Bottled at 5.2% abv - can go up as high as 7.2%

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
Imbockinsxtx (81) - Big Bend (Benavides, TX), Texas, USA - JUL 18, 2004
The first thing that got my attention as I popped the top off the bottle was the Winey, berry Aroma. The beer poured a nice orange colour with abundant head. The Flavour was mediciney and hoppy. The Mouthfeel was Oily and Waxy. The bitter hop finish seems to be well balanced with the Flat Champagne like flavour/palate of the brew. I expected a more malty/sweeter flavour based on the winey fruity Aroma. Overall, this beer is kinda like a flat Champagne with some medicine or kerosene added. Cheers!

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
Quetzalcoatl (153) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - JUL 18, 2004
Great crisp aroma…big thick head and attractive color. Very dry, pleasant sourness is present as well. Unlike most other Trappist/Abbey offerings.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
MrWalker (926) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - JUL 16, 2004
UPDATED: JAN 10, 2005 Bottle @ Akkurat, Stockholm
What can I say, this is a world classic. Nothing compares to this one. So, so complex in a fresh summery maner. This beer is unbeaten in its style. Put me on a dessert island; this would be my choice. I think. Filling.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Emil (6065) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - JUL 14, 2004
UPDATED: JAN 21, 2005 Bottle. Hazy dark golden color, lemon fruity aroma and taste, Medium body and dry finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
JonR888710 (999) - Cochabamba, BOLIVIA - JUL 13, 2004
Copper/brown & peach colors in body. Head is big, white and fluffy. Smells dusty basement, suede/leather, pine, german hops and sour plums. Big on taste. A light sour tanginess is present throughout. Sweet malt, plum and pit fruit are the main course here with a small amount of hops in the ending. Not bad, but certainly not a 97th percentile beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
AlphaOne (142) - AUSTRALIA - JUL 10, 2004
Pillowing rocky head, clear dark golden. A flowery jasmine and herbacious aroma dominate, quite complex, some stonefruit and a definate musty smell. Woody, very dry, and very flowery perfume, complex, yeasty earthyness, and a strongly apparent asian medicinal flavour, firm bitter aftertaste.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
ToolHead (266) - København, DENMARK - JUL 8, 2004
33 cl. bottle. Served in Orval goblet. Hazy orange color, mammoth head. A most impressive-looking beer. The aroma is amazing; refreshingly hoppy, herbal and complex. The taste is very complex too, and truly unique. Well-hopped, with a firm, dry finish, and almost aggressively herbal. Lively mouthfeel and good drinkability.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
bb (7306) - Alamo, California, USA - JUL 4, 2004
UPDATED: SEP 30, 2004 Bottle. Golden hazy beer with a huge white head. Yeasty. Big carbination that just overpowers everything. I’m not sure if I had a soapy glass or if the beer was just soapy, but the soap lasted throughout. Malt, some apple, metallic, a little lemon. Doesn’t live up to it’s reputation. This has to be the worst Trappist out there. After having more bottles, it wasn't a soapy glass. This beer just reminds me of soap. Stale hops. Nothing good. And yes, the beer was brewed less than a year ago and the best by date is years away, so it's fresh. It just doesn't do it for me.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
SilkTork (5375) - Southampton, United Kingdom, Kent, ENGLAND - JUL 3, 2004
UPDATED: DEC 11, 2010 July 2002. Bottle. Beer with a huge reputation. I found a subtle citric fruit flavour which hovered around grapefruit, lemons and oranges, plenty of dry, hoppy bitterness, but little else. I know my taste inclines to sweeter beers, but I had expected something a bit more complex than this for such a highly rated beer. [2.5]
Oct 2003. Perfumed and dry. [2.8]
July 2004. Bottle conditioned. BBE Dec 08 (bottled Dec. 03). Tried alongside Young’s Special London and Freeminer’s Waterloo.
Opens with a hiss. No movement of the beer. Very pleasant raisin fruit aroma - quite rich, yet delicate, sweet and a little bit like rum. The aroma is definitely the most attractive feature of this beer. Although some prickly metallic volatiles come through on pouring, the malt bread and raisins settle in quite early to be joined later on by a powerfully heady orange grove of exquisite freshness and fragrance. Later on some damp leather joins in. This aroma does decay toward the end of the glass to become quite rancid, like oily, raw, maggot infested meat dripped over with hot caramel. Nevertheless, it was the best part of the beer, and was the most interesting aroma of the three beers tried. Colour is glowing amber copper, rather pale, with very tiny hardly noticeable bubbles. The head is three times the height of the beer, but settles leaving lacy rings into mixed foam and bubbles. Appearance was fairly even across all three beers, and once the Orval head had settled the difference was slight, though the pale colour didn’t look as appealing as the Young’s London Special. Mouthfeel is initially generous and filling, moving to a gentle fade. Some slight prickles give an attractive edge. Pleasantly firm without being harsh or heavy. The Freeminer beer had the best mouthfeel by far, with the Young’s Special next, but the Orval was very decent. Alcohol can be detected at all times. The 6.2% is merely a guide-line, and mine was clearly heading up to the 7% mark or higher. The flavour doesn’t match the promise and range of the aroma, but is pleasant with soft, delicate orange flowers and a very mild spiciness. Finish is weak with metallic notes and a touch of blood and bone. The up front flavours are best, middle is good, but the finish is too naked, sharp, unpleasant and fading.
An average appearance, unless short lived foam mountains turn you on, a great aroma, a decent quick grapefruit sweetness up front, but then it’s all about dryness and a chalky, metallic fading finish. However, each tasting produces a higher score than the last. [3.4]
Dec, 2010 A dry and unrewarding malt. Lots of integrated bitterness. There’s some sharp, citric fruit - like grapefruit. There’s a lingering chalkt dryness in the finish. There’s a lot of unrewarding and unpleasant aspects to this beer. I am not a fan of uncomfortable beers, or very sharp or very bitter beers, so I don’t really like this. I try it now and again, and I give it a decent go. But it’s not my thing. [2.6]

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
zach8270 (3802) - Henrietta, New York, USA - JUN 28, 2004
UPDATED: DEC 10, 2008 [bottle - Great European Beerfest 8, Sharp Edge Tavern - East Liberty, PA] Poured a dark copper color with a very thin head. Rich floral aroma with a lot of citrus underneath. Very full flavor with lots of citrus and sweet hops. Crisp taste with a sweet and slightly peppery hop finish.

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