KarmanGhia (276) - Tallahassee, Florida, USA - FEB 4, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 5, 2006 Orval pours an inviting orange/amber with a large and fine-bubbled head that seems intentionally crafted with the smallest of bubbles. The nose is strongly sweet from the flavors of caramel and perhaps peaches mixed wth a light alcohol presence. This beer tastes strongly of nearly british, caramel-tasting malts. This is accompanied by a light spice and the smallest citrus presence - certainly more orange than lemon - and, wait, perhaps that caramel was more apple. Holy cow, this is a great beer, rather different than the others in this style. Bailz316 (256) - North Carolina, USA - FEB 3, 2006
Pours a hazy orange with airy white head. Orange prominent in the nose. Also bananas and aprictos, spices. Lively. Dry, bitter finish. Maybe I had unrealistic expectations, but I thought this beer came up short, esp. for $6 a bottle. redlight (2318) - Orlando, Florida, USA - FEB 3, 2006
UPDATED: AUG 28, 2007 re-rate. rated this in my early days of rating, thought it deserves another go! Apple skins on the nose, very feint citrus notes, hoppy, a little sourness. Pours a light amber gold with a beautiful white head that looks like cotton. Hoppy dry taste with hints of sourness, a little bit of the apple skins are detectable, with hints of citrus. Very good, this is one of my favorite of the trappists. ...................... This does vary differently from the Trappist beers i’ve sampled. It actually reminds me of a flemish sour in a way. It pours blonde. The flavor has a lot of fruit, apple cider, the middle has a sourness to it, then it has a smooth finish. Its great! Aquilo (651) - Berkeley, California, USA - FEB 2, 2006
Golden Blond. The head fills up the glass if you’re not careful. Smells very fruity, like white wine, with subtle hints of spice: cinnamon and clove.Very bubbly The taste is a bit metallic, but it has that pleasant cinnamon and clove flavor in the aftertaste. Not bad. chicagobears (473) - Elk Grove Village, Illinois, USA - FEB 2, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 14, 2007 Dirty orange, nearly opaque in murkiness. Huge pillow like head without a sticky lace. Flake coriander spices floating in depth of my Orval glass. The flavor opens up the more I drink it. Started off dry hopped, licorice roots, coriander, and peppers, almost intimidating. Then the fruits started popping out more and more, earthy, banana and orange peal. Finished dry with a complex lingering spiciness. So much going on with this ale.
Capa (3295) - Kitsap, Washington, USA - FEB 1, 2006
Poured a slightly cloudy orange with a nice fluffy head. Aroma is fruit, hops, and some yeast. Taste is grassy with fruits, citrus and hops. A rather bitter finish with flavor that lingers in the mouth. You can feel the warming of the alcohol in the finish as well. Those monks sure know how to brew a good beer. thebirdshow (27) - Burlington, North Carolina, USA - FEB 1, 2006
This beer had very fresh spicy and fruity smell. Poured a nice white head and had a cloudy orange color. Floral in taste. A little bitter not quite as full bodied as I had hoped. Very carbonated with not much of an after taste. A solid beer just not my favorite. yngwie (17049) - Kristiansand, NORWAY - JAN 31, 2006
UPDATED: DEC 30, 2007 Bottle. (Bottling date 061121) Poured a bit too cold, with an almost clear, orange-golden body with lots of co2. The head is big, dense and beige, diminishing slightly. Leaves nice lacings. The aroma is the well-known fruity, sourish one, with spices, yeast and a touch of banana in the far back. I have a little problem with Orval I think. Sometimes, when I’m in the mood for Orval, I really, really love it. Other times, like tonight, I’m not sure. Off course it’s good, world class indeed, but it still don’t reach me. Not only the aroma, but the whole experience. The flavor has it’s usual qualities, dry, fruity, dusty, yet sweet, with yeast, and spicyness playing a major part. Pale malt as well. Quite full-bodied, dryish and slightly sticky mouthfeel. The finish is long, with all the qualities from the aroma and initial flavor, and a distinct bitterness. What a beautiful beer. Pity it was not an Orval night for me. Seems I should have aimed for the dark side, and I think I will try to stay away if I’m not in the mood. Still, rating: 7-4-8-4-16-3.9SHIG (4962) - Wasilla, Alaska, USA - JAN 31, 2006
Bottled. (Bottled 040401) Golden/orange, lively beer with a huge, dense off-white head. It’s so well carbonated, it’s hard to tell whether it is hazy or not. Fruity aroma with medicine-notes. Yeast and dried fruits can also be noticed. The medicine comes stronger in the flavor, but not in an unpleasant way. Malts, sugar, banana, spices and hops is also present. A little too lively in the mouth. Long, lightly astringent bitterness, and yet sweetness, along with alcohol in the finish. First time I tasted Orval, 10 years ago, was at a hotel in a small hamlet in the woods and valleys of the northern parts of Luxemburg. Had just finished a rabbit-dish, when me and my lager-drinking father-in-law had this.That was when he understood that beer is not only lagers and pils. It was a warm summer-evening and life was good. Thought it might suit well as rating number 400, as it is a nice beer with nice memories. (060131)
Dark golden to reddish color with creamy head. Aroma was fruity and pleasant. Bitter taste with a lasting flavor that reminded me of hazelnut or someother nutty flavor. Great trappist. kevin62 (267) - New Jersey, USA - JAN 29, 2006
Poured out a dark golden color with a huge sparkling white head.The aromas are earthy and hoppy as well as the taste.Another truely great trappist beer.