bdigital (658) - Ft Wayne, Indiana, USA - FEB 8, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle: Pours a dark brown with a minimal tan head. Seemed much darker than a typical tripel, but what the hell. Nose was heavily spiced but not in the traditional cinnamon/nutmeg sense...massive spruce, mint and herbal notes with some nice roasted malts to provide a backbone. Heavily carbonated, wonderful body. Flavor was much of the same from the nose with an added candied sugar sweetness lingering about. Very good brew, only wish I could have a whole bottle to myself at some point.
porterhouse (1580) - Boothbay, Maine, USA - FEB 7, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
(330 ml bottle from McKean and Charles) Pours cloudy dirty orange-amber with quite a few small solids. One finger of biege head recedes to a thin layer. Aroma is surprisingly a bit muted and one-dimensional - mostly just sweetish and lightly candyish, perhaps some fruit. Mouthfeel smooth, fairly soft, fairly heavy-feeling for the style. Finishes a bit dry. Weepy, light rings of lacing persist. Flavor is sweetish and lightly fruity. Not much hint of the spices that are described on the bottle. No real particular flavors actually jumped out at me. Just a touch hot but ABV pretty well-hidden. Nice if not too remarkable.
ajm (1072) - Los Angeles, California, USA - FEB 7, 2009
4.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: FEB 25, 2009 Tap at Toronado SD. This is the best Tripel I have ever tasted, and perhaps the best Belgian style. Aroma of grape and Flemish sour. Flavors of light wheat, yeast, sour, oak, grape, apple juice, and sparkle. Just immaculate. I thought Struiselensis was the beer of theirs I would drink any day, but I was wrong. This is a masterpiece. Note two weeks later: the bottle version is not as good.
Heathen (1500) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - FEB 6, 2009
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
THOUGHTS: I thought this would be better. Hid alcohol fairly well. It was good, but not as incredible as I usually thing of Struise beers.
TECHNICAL: Bottle. Poured a murky, medium brownish orange with a small to average, just barely off-white head that kept a thin sheet. There were also tiny to medium body particles of an average to thick density. The aroma was moderate to heavy earthy hops, a little funk, pear, peach, pineapple, honey, candi sugar, some spices and cherry pits. The flavor started sweet and finished very sweet, a little acidic and slightly bitter. There was peaches, pineapple, spices, yeast, candi sugar and honey. The medium body was syrupy then very dry with very fizzy carbonation and a lightly astringent and lightly alcoholic finish.
Dickinsonbeer (5074) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - FEB 5, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
11.2 oz bottle. Pours a nice orangey copper with a slight haze- and a few yeastie colonies floating around- killer dense off beige head and nice lace. Aroma is peppery earthy and spicy phenolic yeast- yet smooth and not out of control- some nice fruity orangey esters with some apricot and pear- nice doughy malt sweetness. Flavor is also phenolic spicy earthy and peppery from the yeast- it almost gets a bit out of control but then balances itself out with a good doughy lightly sweet malt backbone. I kinda like the yeast they have going for this beer. High velvety carbonation makes for a smooth palate in the end. Nice but I think I like the Reserve just a little better.
MoDog (927) - Griffith, Indiana, USA - FEB 4, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Poured from a 330ml bottle and served in a tulip. This beer poured a hazy, darker golden orange hue with a large number of floaties and a one-finger thick off-white head that settled into a lasting cap. Not much lace to speak of. The aroma consisted of dried-orange peel, spicy yeast esters, honey, candi sugar, apricot, and light dates. The flavor had a surprisingly soft sweetness. Honey, caramel, apricots, oranges, and pears interwoven with coriander, cinnamon, and a mild peppery hop finish. Very nice! The mouthfeel was full-bodied and heavy on the tongue, but neatly cleaned away by a decent amount of crisp, aggressive carbonation. Lots of flavors going on and not overly spiced. Very well done!
Ernest (7317) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - FEB 3, 2009
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle (gusher, lots of protein breakout).
Head is initially average sized, frothy, light brown, mostly diminishing.
Body is muddy medium amber, bottle conditioned.
Aroma is moderately malty (caramel), moderately hoppy (honeysuckle), lightly to moderately yeasty (cobwebs, basement), with notes of tangerine, coriander, pear syrup, sugar.
Flavor is moderately to heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter.
Finish is lightly to moderately sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter.
Medium to full body, syrupy texture, lively carbonation, moderately alcoholic.
It’s certainly an enjoyable beer...not a true tripel by my reckoning (spiced, too sweet, not very yeasty, etc.), but a fun sugary strong Belgian golden.
jmm635 (991) - Havertown, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 3, 2009
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours honey colored with a foamy off-white head. Spicy aromas with tons of candied sugars! Flavor was very fruity. I tasted apricot and peachy flavors. Slightly syrupy and very warming. Great winter beer!
Beerlando (3342) - Orlando, Florida, USA - FEB 2, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a hazy, dark, burnt orange color with a foamy, well retained, khaki colored head. Fat, jagged ribbons of lace circle the glass. Aromas are funkier than expected, notes of dusty barnyard yeast and wild, grassy hops showing alongside fruity scents of tangerine rind, apricot, and lemon. Soft candy sugar and lactic cream comprise the malt base, while hints of coriander and white pepper lend significant, well placed spice. Flavors are initially sweet, with the candy sugar showing strong, but the lactic, farmhouse funk comes crashing through with grassy, peppery hops and citrus rinds in tow. The balance is really nice, with all the spices and hops cutting the malty sweetness down to size. Apricot and peppery hops linger on the finish. The mouthfeel is substantial and lightly syrupy at first, but the lively carbonation and dry, almost parching yeast profile even it out. The alcohol is definitely there, but it never gets in the way. It is very rare that I run across a tripel that I really adore, but this is one of them. It definitely belongs in the upper echelon of the genre.
Ughsmash (7508) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 1, 2009
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottled, BB Nov. 2010. Poured medium honeyed orange with a short cap of off-white head. The aroma was on the dark side with fruity and dry mead-like noets accented by floral notes and spicy yeast.. solidly presented. The flavor also had some mead-like honey along with paler malts on the core with peppery heat, zesty apricot skins, and faint herbal notes around.. finished on the warm side with a spicy complexion. Medium-plus bodied on the palate with a long, dry, yeasty finish.. some stickier malts impeded the flow at times. This was a solid brew.