Brewed by Brasserie Rochefort
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Rochefort, Belgium


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 3283   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.07   EST. CALORIES: 276   ABV: 9.2%
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The lower gravity cousin to Rochefort 10. Nicknamed "Spéciale" (’The Special’), this beer is the most recent production. The Rochefort 8 has a more tawny colour and a more pronounced aroma, with an even richer fruitiness (a slight undertone of fig?) and a little more spiced dryness, like that of a cake, which gives a balanced finish to the final notes.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
jgb9348 (4942) - Arlington (Pentagon City), Virginia, USA - JUN 15, 2003
UPDATED: NOV 2, 2003 Bottle #2:
Dark brown with a prominent ruby tint. Dense light-tan head, fairly thin. Very musty aroma of pit fruit, malt, raisins, caramel and a slight spiceyness. Medium-bodied; Very carbonated; Inital strong flavours, fades quickly into a subtle taste. Aftertaste shows the musty character as well as some sweetness. Overall, a nicer nose than the first bottle, just lacking in taste a bit to me. Values for this rating: 9,4,7,3,15.

Bottle #1:
Hazy dark brown in colour with a very nice small-bubbled tan head. The smell is very sweet, ripe fruit and sugar dominate the aroma and make your mouth water. This one smells a lot less malty than Rochefort 10, which in my book would be a good thing. The taste is very fruity, but also very malty. The carbonation lingers on the tongue for quite a while and at the same time some other flavours (yeast & spices) linger on the palate. This beer is pretty similar to Rochefort 10 aside from the smell, with this having a little less malt overload and more fruity complexity. As 'hotstuff' said, I prefer Westy 12 to either Rochefort 10 or 8. A good beer, but not the best...in my books, that still belongs to Westy 12. Values for this rating: 9,5,8,4,18.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
hotstuff (4388) - Indiana, USA - JUN 15, 2003
First of all, I very, very much liked this brew versus the Rochefort 10. This was a much smoother tasting Rochefort than the 10. It poured a large invigorating tan head with fine-small bubbles. It had a fruity aroma to it and the lacing on the sides of my glass was fair. The body was light brown, yeasty, and murky. This was one fine smooth and enjoyable drink. However, I still prefer a Westy 12 over a Rochefort.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
thedm (5001) - Fort Wayne, USA - JUN 15, 2003
This brew poured a very large envigorated head of creamy fine light brown bubbles and a yeasty opaque light brown body. Its aroma was of a medium strength roasted malt. It had a very smooth complex palate with flavors of caramel malt and a very smooth but slightly tingly mouthfeel. I liked it better overall that the3 Rochefort 10. It had an excellent lacing.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
Boutip (4995) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 13, 2003
UPDATED: OCT 11, 2009 Dark brown colour going a little bit on the red. Nice head when pourred that does not disapear too quickly. Roasted malts and higher alcohols are first impression. Very hearthy beer with a caramalized aftertaste. As usual with Trapist, a very fine beer. Re-rate 2004: I had to re-rate this beer when I had it at the Greenwich in Brussels. This beer was served at room temperature and the aroma and taste had more complexity to it as well as one of the most beautiful apricot/peachy feels to a beer that I had the chance to taste. Wow!!!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
JorisPPattyn (8194) - Ursel, BELGIUM - JUN 13, 2003
Murky brown like the pelt of a purebred horse. Yellowish, dense head, collapsing in the lacey way. Nose of bananas, plums, pears. Some roasted malts and "students' oats"(=mix of hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds and raisins) Taste of bitter pear. Very velvety and yet muscled underbuild from a range of malts, roasted and pale. Retronasal amonds. Alcohol, brandy-ish and higher alcohols. Very thick, nourishing mouthfeel. Monks' beer was once called liquid bread. This is whole-meal brown bread, straight from the farmers' oven. Impressive.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
beerguy101 (5319) - Newark, California, USA - JUN 12, 2003
Dark brown color. Large head. Aroma is malty, cherry with a touch of chocolate and brandy. A full bodied trappist ale. Big malt flavors. Chocolate, cherries and toffee. Touches of banana, vanilla and raisins. Well balanced. Extremely well balanced. Hides the 9.3% alcohol very well. I think I like this one better than the 10. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is lightly bitter.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Spiesy (2338) - Sydney, Greater London, AUSTRALIA - JUN 12, 2003
Bottled. Nut brown, slightly murky, with a light brown soft head. Prune, cinnamon and spiced aroma. Big forward flavour, punctuated once by alcohol and the followed by spiced tart flavour. The palate is short and tart. I’m struggling to score it has highly as some others. Perhaps I might cellar a few and see how they fare. This bottle has a used by date of 25/02/08

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Dalle (1145) - Skørping, DENMARK - JUN 12, 2003
UPDATED: MAR 19, 2004 Small light brown head - small lace. Great aroma; malt, fruit (banana, berries and a load of FIGS...), yeast. (Too) Lively/fizzy mouthfeel. Taste; sweet, chocolate, coffee - stays on the tongue... Sirupy on my lips. Slightly bitter finish. Complex.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
Hansen (7123) - Assentoft, DENMARK - JUN 9, 2003
Fine, dark color and head. Lacing. Good aroma with notes of dark fruits. The flavor has a lot to offer: Dades, raisin and perhaps a little laqurice. Real good filling palate.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
guzzler (76) - AE, GERMANY - JUN 6, 2003
This is probably the best beer I've ever had. Pours deep amber with a creamy tan head. Fruity, fig and raisin aroma that continues into the flavor. Chocolate and coffee hints that make this an outstanding beer.

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