slcbrewer (44) - USA - APR 11, 2006
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle purchased in Brussels.
Actually wasnít that crazy about this. It was OK, but not as good as the 12 or either of the Rocheforts. Maybe I got a bad bottle, but Iíve had lotís better beer than this.
Kevster (344) - Bradenton, Florida, USA - MAR 12, 2006
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2005 bottle: Pours a dark cherry color with a medium size light brown head that is fully lasting with excellent lacing. The fruity aroma is awesome with hints of cherry, rasberries and almonds. The complex malty flavor is fruity leaving a dry finish. A fantastic brew that is very interesting with each taste.
smcd (366) - USA - MAR 8, 2006
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Very dark. Big, lasting tan head with excellent lacing in the glass. Some ethanol sweetness resolving into prue and raisin aromas. Like its big brother, vintage matters here. Latest varieties were slightly "green" tasting.
AlchemistZ (493) - Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA - MAR 7, 2006
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark, barely transluscent amber with a strong, lacing, tan head. Aroma of spicy alcohol, almost ethereal, some clay, and a vinous character that is very pleasing. All of the aroma componnets are in the flavor but I am also getting a touch of rubber that I do not care for.
Fantomas23 (463) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - MAR 5, 2006
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Rounding out the first twenty of the evening is this little gem. Iím fairly certain that our host did not retrieve this directly from the St. Sixtus Brothers. If theyíd just start brewing Schlitz instead, they wouldnít have a problem with people buying up all their beers and selling them on the black market. Not that I want them to stop brewing; I still havenít had the opportunity to indulge in a Westy 12. This is what a Belgian Strong Ale should be. Hazy brown, well-carbonated. Lots of dark fruits that pound the tongue with natural sweetness, the excessively cloying sweetness of candi sugar not necessary to round out this one. Wonderfully complex and infinitely satisfying.
GregClow (3183) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 4, 2006
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle shared with tupalev & jerc - big thanks to blankboy for the bottle! Ah, so nice to be able to finally complete the Westy trifecta! Pours a slightly hazy mahogany with a sizable tan head that leaves lot of lacing. Aroma is floral and herbal, yeasty and funky, with notes of tea and almond and bread. Flavour is full and complex, with notes of herbal tea (camomile?), rye bread, vanilla, and dry citrus to finish. I knew it was going to be good, but I didnít expect it to be so interesting and unique. Lovely stuff!
Numenor (871) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - MAR 2, 2006
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Taphouse in Norfolk -- Another great beer, very dark cherry again in color (very similar in that to the Westy 12). The 8 has a medium brown head, slightly darker than the 12. Great fruity aroma, cherry and malts are highly present. The 8 has a stronger detectible aroma than the 12 does though itís not as silky. Very complex, grapes and fruits come through but many more are unidentifiable. Very cool and clean ending, not warm like the 12.
Gorbalev (3000) - Ontario, CANADA - FEB 27, 2006
4.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle shared with GregClow and Jerc, graciously donated by Blankboy. Dark brown, reddish hints, small tight brownish head, bubbly, looks great! Interesting spice, alcohol, and even herbal aroma - a little muted though. Taste: nice spicy, floral, sweet, alcohol taste. Beautifully creamy mouthfeel. Wonderfully complex. Sweet linger, exceptionally balanced. Right on par with Rochefort 8, except this one is more flavourful. Nice citric bitterness in the finish as it warms. Very very nice, better than the 12. Thanks again Paul!!!!!
FrankJohansen (3617) - Sabro, DENMARK - FEB 24, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Dark brownish colour with a huge light brown creamy head. Complex aroma and taste of malt, spices and fruits.
jercraigs (9835) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - FEB 22, 2006
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAR 14, 2008 2008-03-02. Very dark brown body with a modest tan head and nice lacing on the glass, faster fading than the Blond. Sweet alcoholic sugary malt aroma, dark fruits. Similar flavour, rich alcoholic dark fruit up front, sweet sugary malt foundation (8+). Smooth medium bodied palate is pleasantly effervescent. (4+) 8/4/8/4/17 - 4.1
Bottle at In De Vrede Cafe, Westvleteren
<P>February 2006. Bottle from BelgianShop via Blankboy - thanks very much for letting me sample this one. Dark brown body with a nice creamy beige head, decent lacing. Aroma requires much swirling of the glass at first but once it is released it is quite nice. Muted toffee, brown sugar, touch of hot alcohol and very tiny notes of fruit. Malt up front but not that sweet. Fruity flavour with a surprisingly dry alcoholic finish. Medium palate. Very nice beer, but I was looking for something sweeter, and more like the 12. As nice as the Westys are I think I am in the camp that prefers the Rocheforts. 8/4/8/4/16 - 4.0