Brewed by Brasserie dOrval
Style: Belgian Ale
Florenville - Villers-d.-Orval, Belgium


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 4345   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.92/5   EST. CALORIES: 186   ABV: 6.2%
In contrast to all the others, the Orval Trappist brewery makes only one beer for the general public. It has an intensely aromatic and dry character. Between the first and second fermentations there is also an additional dry-hopping process. Through this the beer acquires its pronounced hoppy aroma and extra dry taste.
Bottled at 5.2% abv - can go up as high as 7.2%

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Brouwser (119) - gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - OCT 22, 2007
Bière cuivrée avec une fantastique mousse blonde, abondante et persistante. Il y a un léger voile. Le parfum est très floral, il rappel le sous-bois une journée fraîche après la pluie. Notes de conifère, de mousse, d’écorce de bouleau et même de champignons. Le goût est astringeant, avec des notes d’alcool bien senties. On retrouve à nouveau la forêt. Elle flirte avec des notes terreuses ou de cuir. Sans y tomber toutefois. Le palais est sans reproche, rond et pétillant. C’est une excellente bière, disponible à la SAQ juste à côté!

uoffgator (49) - Miami, Florida, USA - OCT 19, 2007
Aroma consisting of citrus and spice. Head was tall and loose. Color, held to the light, was marbled and opaque. Initial Flavors were smooth with a misleading bitter tail which was followed by a mild and surprisingly smooth mediocre complexity.

coldbrewky (1731) - Hippetown East, New York, USA - OCT 19, 2007
I have been having this running conversation with a co-worker about the "This is Spinal Tap" movie and all of the fantastic little facts that come to light about it. The one statement that has become apparent is "Does Tap imitate life or life imitate Tap?" It is my firm belief that all other Belgian ales imitate Orval. This was bottled on July 5th of this year, and boasts 6.9% hidden well on the label. The pour results in a semi-hazy rust tinged amber. Upon it sits a bright fluffy white head that leaves stained glass like lacing on the tulip glass as it rockily reduces itself to a quarter inch steady head. (ours go to eleven) Nose is gently spicy and lasting about the glass. Orange peel, yeast, rose hips and pepper blend well and transition from the nose to the slightly bitter body (this is an exact copy of my inner structure) Incredibly mellow and balanced (i’d work in a habadashery, yeah!). I realy don’t think this one can be rated accuratley from just one bottle since there is a good bit going on.

wetherel (1899) - Cupertino, California, USA - OCT 16, 2007
$5.49 bottle from Holiday Wine Cellar. Bottled on 11/11/2006. 1 yr old. Big 2 finger off-white head starts with small bubbles clinging to the glass for dear life, and after 10 minutes of waiting for the head to settle, an awesome 3mm microbubble foam is left with remnants of the original head still clinging in place on the side of the glass. The aroma, I’m told, is classic Brett finishing. I’ve smelled this many times before, originally thinking it was a flaw, it was plasticy, it was phenolic from using chlorinated water for the mash, but now I know better. The nose/brain often interprets the same smell as pleasant or unpleasant depending on the experience and knowledge of the smell. As such, a new car smell is not the best smell for a beer, as hops is not the best smell for a car (except to me). Maybe a bit of lemon and green apples in the aroma. I cautiously give the aroma an 8. The amber color is clear, but leans slighty cloudy. I reluctantly give the appearance a 5, but that head is just so beautiful. Taste is certainly dry and a little tart. A little bit of tannin/hop bitterness finishes on the back of the tongue. Though not my favorite style, it is a wonderfully refreshing alternative to the onslaught of sweet imperial stouts and nose pounding IPAs, both of which I love by the way.

thedrip (10) - Harlowton, Montana, USA - OCT 15, 2007
poured a hazy amber. thick frothy head. scent of apples very apparent in the aroma sweet flavor, but nothing over the top. well balanced finishes with a citrusy lemon feel. Very refreshing ale.

jlf278 (288) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - OCT 15, 2007
bottle, very nice white head, plentiful, seductive. Body is between amber and copper, a little murky but transparent. Smells of apples, scotch and maple sugar. Thin body, good carbonation, quite wet. Taste hugely of pepper with some apple (minus the sweetness). Finishes with a lemon zest, almost tinny but still good. Just a bit bitter, enough to add some depth and something to remember. Too dry for my tastes, but I still deeply enjoyed it. Savored to the last drop.

smartlung (159) - Valrico, Florida, USA - OCT 15, 2007
ok - this is a tough one to rate - I think this one was a bit off - very disappointing to my friend who was waiting to drink this for over a year. I had several time and dont remember it tasting like this. Will have to rerate soon

ElGaucho56 (394) - USA - OCT 14, 2007
100th rating! Thought I’d break something out of the cellar for the occasion. 33cl bottle dated June 06, marked 6.7 ABV. Cap about blew off and as I pour I can see why: a gentle pour creates a luscious souffle of mother-of-pearl froth which forms rocky peaks as it gradually dissipates. Glaciers of frost hang to the trappist glass edges. From above, the beer appears a copper bronze, but held to the light it becomes a delectable golden amber. A quick whiff draws images of lemongrass, orange peel, cotton candy, horse leather, treacle; really the aroma is spectacular, to put it bluntly. One of the smoothest beers I’ve had in a long while, with a massive body and velvety texture. Has a slight gueuze like quality to its tart finish, but the grassy minty hops help draw out the subtle sweetness that really balances it out, making it very drinkable. An absolute pleasure.

MMortier (11) - Ghent, BELGIUM - OCT 11, 2007
Very complex beer that has been with me in every milestone of my life (and in most every useless moment as well). Sheer psychological love alone compells me to give it a perfect rating.
A carefully composed symphony of orthogonal flavours (and styles) that can only be fully absorbed if you deeply sniff the surface of the wide glass while drinking it. The only way to take this ambrosia is to really make love to it and bring it maximally inside you, and drink, drink! Floral and bitter, sweet and dry, male and female, Orval is always both of everything.
I’m sure some people only gave this a bad rating so there’d be plenty of Orval left for themselves.

Headbanger (4022) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - OCT 11, 2007
11.2 oz bottle-An ornagish golden body with a medium size loose head that dissipated into nothing. Aroma of floral, yeast, and sweetness. Taste of the same with a dryness coming in on the back end along with other flavors. Nice tasting brew.

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