arjoseph (642) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 7, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: APR 14, 2005 Tap into trappist glass @ Map Room, Chicago. Big beer that tastes big and carries its alcohol well. Beautiful in the glass: robust brown-black is completely opaque, and the head seems just as thick, much like mousse in its consistency, a nice lighter shade of beige and incredibly (almost pasty) lacing on the side of the glass. Full bodied and incredibly creamy (melted milkshake thickness). The complexity in flavor is subtle: you can smell the dark fruits and a bit of the maltiness, and the plums hover right beneath the texture while the beer is in your mouth. Good sweetness, balanced by bread and a hint of acid. The aftertaste is light but diffident, and has a gentle hops kick. Incredibly drinkable for its size, perhaps not challenging enough to be among the elite.
Cornfield (5570) - Oak Forest, Illinois, USA - SEP 7, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAR 13, 2008 Just happened to look back at my rating of this great brew from 3 & 1/2 years back and my neck is growing weary from all the head shaking that Iím doing. The bottle Iím drinking from was purchased at that time, only know Iím revelling in the fruity aroma - plums, dark grapes, raisins - enjoying the smooth, creamy hot palate, and luxuriating in the complexity of fruity tastes, alcohol, dark sweet malts, and subtle spiciness. Much to my surprize, Iím older now still.
Original Rating - 9/7/2004 - 6/3/7/2/15 - 3.3.... What a Dork!!!!!This has a nice fruity flavor, a strong alcohol appearance, but is not too overpowering in its complex flavors as you drink it. It looks good in the glass and goes down quite smoothly. My only complaint is that is has a strong, sour wine aftertaste.
AndrewKoransky (30) - Salida, Colorado, USA - SEP 5, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
I didnít think I was a fan of trappist ales until I tried this beer. Wow... outstanding. Bit hoppier than Iíve come to expect from a trappist, but the hops donít overpower the beer. Superbly balanced, with enough hops, malt, yeastiness, and alcohol to please just about anyone. May God continue bless these monks! Outstanding...
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - SEP 5, 2004
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
The jovial monk on the label seems the perfect host, holding his chalice aloft, and, after drinking down this deliriously delectable ale, who can argue his happiness? Not I, not I!!
Color is a dark russet brown, and head is enormous, majestic, utterly awesome!
Aroma hits you right off: earthy, nutty, and not merely deep, but cavernous. Incredibly complex, and utterly gorgeous: cocoa,plum, port wine, medicine, and a very apparent alcoholic character, plus anise, pepper, and more, so much more!
On first sip, I canít help but think that "complexity" is a shallow term with which to circumscribe the many aspects of this amazing brew. So much to contend with, so much going on!
I need to take a breath and reel from the feeling, and seek relief from the rush! Extraordinary!
Inegration is perfect: there are hops aplenty, and massive malt, but nothing sticks out above or beyond, it all joins forces to create this amazing masterpiece.
Was this only 10%? Oh, they must be happy monks, indeed!
igel (196) - New Mexico, USA - SEP 4, 2004
4.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
A deep transparent ruby red color with plenty of CO2, a rocky, foamy head that had decent retention (mellowed to a dense creamy layer). The lacing is sticky and thick and the carbonation is plentiful.
Aroma is bready, malty, and slightly astringent with fruits and spices.
Flavor is a sweet/tart start with a spicy middle and peppery finish. Flavors are complex and change with temperature. Mellows and smoothes as it warms, but keeps its complexity.
Mouthfeel is effervescent and creamy - mellows as it warms. Full bodied and smooth, yet oily with a bite.
IMHO: This is a truly great beer. A great balance of desirable characteristics -- not overwhelming. I feel unqualified to give it the great review it deserves.
JonMoore (2033) - Loughborough, Leicestershire, ENGLAND - SEP 2, 2004
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: SEP 16, 2004 Bottle from Beers of Europe. Opaque, dark amber colour, with nice sized, off white head. Aroma is complex, rich, caramel, fruit, alcohol, spices. Taste is just as complex but even nicer; caramel, alcohol, raisins, figs, plums. Nice long sweet and dry aftertaste. Full bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. I was expecting to be impressed and I was.
ThomasE (5174) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - AUG 21, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Murky dark amber appearence with very quick dissapering head. aroma is an explosion of different smells, it has lots of spices , some yeast and underneath is the alcohol ever present. Flavor Is not sharp as expected, but full with some plum, raisin etc. Palate is super.
grant (842) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - AUG 18, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
Full, hazy tea-brown. Fluffy, long-lived head. Weakish aroma, but whatís there is quite delectable (waffle, butter, pecan, leather). Flavor is fuller, with raisins, rum, honeydew melon and figs cavorting about. Palate is creamy, nevertheless finishing dry but with a slightly salty fullness.
brewshthereen (316) - Oregon, USA - AUG 16, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This abbey ale is clearly well made and well liked. Charming, delicious, and fantastic. Can you tell I liked it? LOL If you can find it, relish in itís devine flavor.
IndianaRed (3120) - Boise, Idaho, USA - AUG 15, 2004
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: MAY 30, 2005 Bottle pours a quite dark amber/brown with a robust off-white head, that just will not go away. Thick heavy clingy lacing as well. Aroma iss a dark, rich smokey carmely, spicy ensemble. Quite complex and interesting. Flavor is of old wood casks, smoked and musty. rich, full. A bit of licorice and clove. The 10% ABV is not obvious and the feel is smooth and thick. A lot of head and lacing is maintained but the carbonation is fine and soft. Trailer is a llttle smoke, a little alcohol, and all good.