smoosh (534) - New Albany, Indiana, USA - JUN 22, 2003
4.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle: Deep cloudy brown with as proud a head as I've ever seen. Wet, if that makes sense, and tiny bubbled. Aroma is sweet - almost fruity root beer (really good root beer). Nice, rich, creamy and full palate. This one I get! Flavors bounce all over the mouth. Fruits, chocolate, alcohol - AMAZING!
lunaticharness (183) - Torrance, California, USA - JUN 21, 2003
4.2 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
maybe ive got a bum bottle, but Joet has said the same about the extreme alcohol flavor... the first half of the glass was pretty rough... but the farther ive gotten down on it... the more sweet and malt flavor comes out, very sweet, almost too sweet, the color is DARK, the head is nice and a nice tan ring continues to be present sip after sip, aftertaste is rather nutty... i might have to stop back by plumpjack and pick up another and compare ...
Sully (1377) - Potts Point, New South Wales, AUSTRALIA - JUN 21, 2003
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Marvellous billowy head atop a very opaque brown/copper colour. The nose is not all that strong and has aromas of plum and dried fruit. The mouthfeel is amazingly not in keeping with the ABV and the finish is extremely dry, makes you want to reach for a cleansing ale.......aaaargh what did I just say?? The lacing is quite prominent and persistent. I sampled this beer at a cool temperature, try doing that with a lager or Aussie macro swill. Boy, time for beddybyes, this one after a Golden Dragon, phew.
JorisPPattyn (7677) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - JUN 19, 2003
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Vertical tasting: A/ Rochefort 10, BBd: 27/02/07, which probably means brewed 2002; B/ Rochefort 10, BBd: 20/04/99, which would make this sample 9 years old. Points given above for A/, [points] for B/ given in the text. Colour: A/ deep-dark brown (reddish hue), hazy, thick dense creamy head, stable and going down lacey; B/deep-dark brown, foxy shine; cream-coloured head nearly immediately reduced to rim  Nose: banana, chocolate, toffee, ripe pear, hops; B/ caramel, toffee, liqueur, madeira  Taste: A/ nearly overly rich taste + mouthfeel (undivisible) with chocolate, double cream - that sounds as mole sauce?, enriched with vintage port, raisins and aromatic wood, enlivened with sugar-syrup and a bitter-peppery rootspice (horseradish, daikon,...) B/ Sweetness as from liquorice mixed in a port or dark apéritif wine (maybe a great vintage Pineau des Charentes). Alcoholtouch retronasal is from Armenian brandy. Tartness somewhere. Strange - I expected this one to be more mellow, but it is really much more severe. A beer that doesn't give a damn whether you like it or not - take it or leave it. "Complex" doesn't even start explaining  Mouthfeel& aftertaste A/ Lots of alcoholburn, as said very rich and chewy. Woody, really tart aftertaste on a velvety roasted maltbed B/ Rich again, but the esters, oxidation have made it less chewy - even when "light" is about the last word to come to mind. Aftertaste with walnut, crème de noix-flavour  Make no mistake - two quite different beers. Yet the points attribuated are exactly similar - for different reasons. Drinking this young or ageing it, in this case, is clearly an open "Geschmackssache"
Spiesy (2338) - Sydney, Greater London, AUSTRALIA - JUN 17, 2003
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottled. Dark brown with a crimson hue. Light beige head that settles down to only just be lacy. Sweet, sweet aroma. The sweetness was typically forward, then the alcohol through the middle, then finally a salty finish. Not the best as far as I’m concerned.
hotstuff (3732) - Indiana, USA - JUN 15, 2003
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
First of all, thedm and I compared this to the Westy 12 and I very, very much like the Westy 12 over this brew. I just could not acquire a taste for this brew as I was hoping to. That said, it poured a large invigorating tan head with fine-small bubbles into my glass. The lacing was good on all sides of my glass. It had a sweet aroma to it and a cloudy brown body. There was carbonation observed with this brew. It kept leaving me with a tingly, burning sensation in my throat that was not to my liking. Give me a Westy 12 anyday!!
thedm (4867) - Fort Wayne, USA - JUN 15, 2003
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
This brew poured a large head of light brown creamy fins bubbles and an opaque cloudy dark brown yeasty slightly carbonated body. Its receeding head left a most excellent lacing and was very long lastibng. It has a strong caramel malt aroma with a complex flavor of roasted malt, spivces and caramel notes. The alcohol content was noticeable, but still well hidden. What a most excellent treat for Father's Day! We also had a Westvleteren 12 on the side for comparison. The results were:
Bottle design: Rochfort
Bottle cap: Rochfort
All in all we thought the Westy was better based mostly on its smoothness and better flavor!
wnp22 (685) - Toronto (Roncesvalles Village), Ontario, CANADA - JUN 14, 2003
4.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Aroma is sour and pungent with a hint of spice and sweetness. Appearance is cloudy brown with a light brown head and nice lace. Flavour is magnifigant. Subtle, sweet with big malt taste and sweet finish, Little or no hint of alcohol. A wonderful trappist. Gets better with each sip! Great.
ericnixon (737) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUN 6, 2003
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: JUL 18, 2003 New Rating: 7/18/2003 - Huge grapey smell! wow! at each swallow i taste a huge grapey/plumby whallop. i want to become a monk so i can make this. Old Rating: Normally i don't like raisins or plums. but this stuff is pretty darn good. very complex flavor with a very pleasing aftertaste. i like it!
jskendzel (602) - Washington DC, USA - JUN 1, 2003
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Beer only slightly chilled. Beige head with dark body. Smells doughy and of sweet yeast, also some cheesy notes. Slight rush of alcohol to the nose, but very very subdued and controlled for an 11.3% beer. Wonderful Belgian dark strong ale profile, with dark fruits and a moderate sweetness. Definitely a world class beer, and to be honest, not terribly different from so many of the other top rated beers in this style. I will say that I believe the Westy has a better, more developed mouthfeel. Nevertheless, well done.