Brewed by Westvleteren Abdij St. Sixtus
Style: Abt/Quadrupel
Westvleteren, Belgium


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 3133   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.44   EST. CALORIES: 306   ABV: 10.2%
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Westvleteren has the smallest output of the Trappist breweries, with only a small part of their production available outside of Belgium.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
gbzia (195) - Cedar Knolls, New Jersey, USA - AUG 27, 2002
Along with the Rochefort 10, my other favorite. A different taste, but in the same class. These will age very well... I have a í87 wating for the right time. Not easy to find, but worth the effort.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
scottyg (79) - Gainesville, Florida, USA - AUG 27, 2002
An excellent beer.... I still have trouble saying "this is the best beer in the world", but damn good beer....

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
FastEddie (230) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - AUG 26, 2002
As I am rating this beer, sitting in front of my computer I have a bottle of it that I am drinking, obtained online from belgianshop. The use-by date on the cap is 23.04.05 and Iím thinking Iíll age my other bottles to see how they develop over time. Fantastic, perfect, sweet malty aroma. Color is a nice medium amber and the head has a nice nutty color to it as well. Flavor has a nice malt-hops balance with a little more to the hops side, and yet it seems as though the monks used almost mathematical precision to obtain this balance. Hidden within the balance one could imagine almost an infinite variety of flavor undertones, and this is a very neat effect. For this reason, I imagine that after aging, it will be quite incredible. Fine carbonation adds a nice tickle to the tongue, but slightly less than in the 8 (which I preferred a bit over the 12). At room temperature the flavor of alcohol is more present. This is an incredibly great ale, however, I do think that it is developing a somewhat legendary status due to the fact that it is made by trappist monks and it is pretty rare. It is really great stuff and Iím glad I bought it but I think I will still be satisfied drinking my favorite american microbrews most of the time instead, and for a lot less cash. If youíre really into belgian trappists though, this is definitely the one for you.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
dankfor20 (193) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - AUG 21, 2002
As the number one beer, I had to see if it lived up to its name. I was not let down. The complexities of flavor that mow down yer taste buds in a relentless assault keeps you guessing as to what yer next sip might taste like. Litte spicy that time. Oh now that one was kinda fruity. Now that seemed a litte roasted. I swear i just tasted meat. No seriously. Excellent belgian that for ten bucks a bottle was worth every penny.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
TheRimmer (483) - Florida, USA - AUG 21, 2002
UPDATED: AUG 28, 2004 Probably the most complex beer i've ever had. As I am only 60 beers into my experience I will no doubt rate this again. But this is the best belgian ive had yet. Figs are everywhere in this beer. In the aroma and the taste and finish. The taste begins like port, which port disgusts me, but it was soon replaced with figs and coffee, possibly some roasted flavors. But figs describes it best. Goes great with chocolate. As a rule Belgians go great with dessert. Not a beer to indulge excessively in. Also...the alcohol was hidden in a totally perfected execution of craftmanship. Worth 12 bucks a bottle? Worth every penny my friend paid for it.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Volgon (2763) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - AUG 14, 2002
UPDATED: JUL 21, 2004 Re-rate 8/14/02: Beats the Rochfort 10 head-to-head. The most complex beer you could hope for. Almost no trace of its high ABV. If there is a heaven, I know what's on tap. First rating: Stunning. It is a smooth feeling brown elixir that has a complex taste that is hard to pin down.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
OlJuntan64 (1265) - Perth, AUSTRALIA - AUG 14, 2002
12/8/02: Rated 6 Westy 12ís ranging from 6 weeks to 6 years of bottling age - notes too detailed to summarize here. Hope to submit article to RB soon. Ratings range from 4.5 - 5/5.
Rerate 7/25/02: Rated during dinner at a small Belgian canal lock-side cafe while having a meeting of our local beer club. I ended up having this beer by accident along with a desert of Belgian chocolate and vanilla icecream smothered in a rum and raisin and advocar topping. I have never thought of a Westy 12 as a desert beer but it went togther with this desert incredibly well. The rich festive complexity of the the Westy just cut through and complemented the sweetness of the icecream and topping like a hand going into silk glove. Yes itís still deep murky red brown with fine bubbled medium size and lasting light beige head and makes a really delicate lace. Aromas are like all your Christmases at once - I could sniff this stuff for hours to try and work out whatís there. I get dried concentrated fruits like apricot and raisins, sharper fruits like apples and green grapes, aromatic sugars like karri honey and chocolate, port wine, spices and a light fruit yeast, and virtually no alcohol. The big yeast aroma and flavour in this beer is somehow special in that it doesnít overpower everything like it does on some of the other stong Belgians.
This is probably because there is so much variety and complexity of flavours that generally match the aromas in this beer. Really smooth, creamy and filling on the mouth/tongue. A slightly softer sweeter middle and a bigger bitter finish followed by a longer mellow bitter sweet chocolatey aftertaste. Still the best aftertaste of any beer Iíve rated.
First rated 9/6/2002 4.9

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
jazz88 (2556) - San Francisco, California, USA - AUG 11, 2002
Bottle brought to me from my Uncle John shipped back from Monkís in Philadelphia. A dark reddish brown swampy color with an off-white head that quickly subsided and laced. After the cap was taken off the bottle created a small head but never blew off the top. The aroma is predominantly of dark fruits and alcohol but builds to a stinging spicy fire in the nose if you keep drawing it in. Wonderful. A medium to full creamy smooth body that tingles the palate with its spirits. Everything about this beer becomes more intense as it warms. The alcohol is well hidden in the flavor but ever present at the edge of every sensation. The dark fruits and spice carry through to the flavor which has many layers that climax at different stages.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
Racegoer (353) - Indiana, Indiana, USA - AUG 9, 2002
UPDATED: APR 13, 2004 Full & Thick as you pour it in to your glass, this beer is very complex, just looking at it makes you see Quality Let it warm up as you would any other Trappsit Ale.Fully loaded,awesome flavors, just simply a First Class Brew, One Great Belgian Ale Brew......... JDW, Flavors of coffee, caramel, and cocoa, Absolutley A WINNER

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
aracauna (3084) - Georgia, USA - AUG 8, 2002
Very dark. The color of a raisin, black except at the right angle when it turns a deep mahogany brown. Light khaki head is a creamy foam that is long-lasting. Laces the glass well. Yeasty caramel on the nose. The taste is vaguely stout-like. The richness of the flavor is very nice but not too rich to make it hard to drink. Caramel, spicy yeast and wood come out first. As it warms, more coffeeish flavor and some lactic characteristics. The beer manages to be slightly creamy and bright on the palate at the same time. Amazingly easy drinking for its strength.

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