strings (377) - Sydney, AUSTRALIA - OCT 25, 2006
Bottle (sip) at RBESG 2006. Hmmmm, what can I say about the top rated beer in the world. The sip I had may not do it justice - sweet, malty, caramel, incredibly tasty. Perhaps I’ll be lucky enough to re-rate it in the future. Roberto (3) - Harelbeke, BELGIUM - OCT 21, 2006 does not count
Bottle 33 cl. By friends Perfect !
The greatest belgium beer. Taste caramel/nutty. Balanced perfectly. Like it super !
ChadwickCarey (3) - West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 19, 2006 does not count
Best Beer in the World??? What a tough reputation to live up to. I think this is a beer that beer lovers are afraid to rate honestly because they feel their other beer aficianados my have a more sofisticated palate than they have. My honest opinion is that this is one of the top belgian beers that I have tasted. Strangely it is so smooth that I can understand that some (including myself) can not express one defining characteristic to describe this beer. It is in the same class as St. Bernardus abt 12 and Rochefort 10. I still prefer the Rochefort. My recommendation is if you can try it at what you feel is a resonable price you should. However, for those that can’t afford it or choose not to try this rare beer.... you shouldn’t feel like you are left out of the "beer club". If you can try a St. Bernardus or Rochefort you are truly tasting beers in the same class that are as good or better depending on your taste. I will be aging my remaining stock and am looking forward to how this beer will age. Glouglouburp (6103) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - OCT 18, 2006
UPDATED: JUL 1, 2010 Complete re-write for a very fresh bottleSofajoern (146) - DENMARK - OCT 17, 2006
In short: A decadent Abt. One of the best (if not THE best) of its kind. Lives up to the hype.
How: Bottle 330ml at In de Vrede (pub in front of the Westvleteren abbey). About two months old, bottling date on the cap.
The look: Purple-brown body topped by a medium beige head with medium retention
In long: Intense aroma with earthy dark fruits, tobacco, chocolate and more. That beer has lots of great qualities but its body is my favourite of them all. Big, rich, smooth, creamy, filling. Swimming in this 5/5 body are a ton of malts and juicy leafy hops. Flavors of dark fruits, toffee, milk chocolate, nuts, tobacco, wood, name it! I was very surprised at how hoppy a fresh bottle is. Lot and logs of juicy leafy hops with a medium slightly resinous bitterness. Alcohol remains well hidden until a little bite at the end. Totally decadent. The sad part about being labelled the #1 beer in the world is that you cannot surpass the expectations. It is not my own #1 beer but it will always be in my top 50 nonetheless. It is sad to see that this wonderful beer is circulating a lot but mostly is borderline illegal ways. Very soon we’ll come across suspicious looking dudes going “hash, pot, acid, westvleteren 12, mescaline”.
This really is very, very good. Smooth, full bodied and extremely well balanced without being bland. Almost too perfect. I’d have liked something to stick out about the 12 - so I could say "I really liked the flavour of dates" or maybe something about the aroma of overripe bananas, but it is so nuanced that I really can’t. I’m thinking that a few years in the cellar will improve this considerably. Luckily I’ve got my hands on a few more bottles.
Not my favourite but it might very well be, when I rerate it in a year or two.
Egon (478) - Gothenburg, SWEDEN - OCT 16, 2006
Bottle bought at BeerMania, tasted with a Westvleteren glass together the other two :-) Tasted last of the three and what a beer! The foam is lightbrown with some yellow in it but thinner than Westvleteren Extra 8. Notes of alcohol, it is above ten ABV after all. Tastes of caramel, sweet and very complex. Some fruits and nuts? When the glass was empty, the fragrances was still there for a long time. Fin (11069) - Merton, Oxfordshire, England, Oxfordshire, ENGLAND - OCT 16, 2006
UPDATED: MAR 3, 2010 Bottle at The Kulminator, Antwerp, Belgium, 05-10-06. I scoured the beer list, well it was’nt so much a list more like a copy of War and Peace, could I find this mythical beer?The heart rate started to climb, fingers getting twitchy, the other three had decided on their beers "come on Fin what are you having", I started running my hands through my hair and getting more irritable by the minute, it must be here. The lady came over, I asked nervously "Do you have any Westvleteren" without answering she brought a laminated small sheet with a selection of Westvleteren beer back, I gave the others a knowing look and picked the 12. She slowly walked towards me with bottle and glass in hand, I licked my lips, this must have been how Bobby Moore felt when the queen presented him with the Jules Rimet Trophy, and like Bobby Moore I wiped my hands, though on my trousers not shorts and more through sweat than mud. the glass and beer were laid before me and it was expertly poured. I lifted it up and ’hark’ was that the voices of angels belting out ’Jerusalem’? I cradled the glass whilst the others watched intently, slowly I lifted it up, the group on the other table were huddled like a group of Hyena’s staring silently waiting for scaps, I fixed them a steely glance and they cowered back. A delicated nutty aroma, backed up with dried fruits and spices slowly started to fill my nose. The taste was sublime, incredibly full flavoured and complex with some silky chocolate and soft maltiness, some burnt sugar, superb. The place was silent and then I gave them a little nod and a wry smile a triumphant cheer rose to a crescendo. Fantastic, I felt waves of elation course through me, now for the Westvletern 12 1998 A8 A5 F10 P5 Ov19 4.7 I’ve had this a few times since that wonderful day back in 2006, had it at the Westy Cafe 2-3 times, at home 4-5 times and whilst I still consider this a truly world class beer I think that it needs some age on it to be truly excellent. I thoroughly enjoyed that beer then and whilst it was young I think the 1998 Westy I had was even better that day. The bottles that I’ve had since then have all been young, fresh and a bit raw, even dare I say it harsh, the alcohol showing more and without the mellowness of age its just not the same beer. I have a few of these aging now and I will continue to rate it but next time it’ll have some years behind it. A8 A5 F8 P4 Ov16 4.1 Skidds (252) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 15, 2006
UPDATED: NOV 11, 2006 I’m very happy to have the privilege to try this beer. Thank you Belgianshop.com! I constantly wonder why, or how drunk I was to be online and felt it justifiable to spend 25$ for a bottle of this all the way from Belgium but when I look at the scarcity of it, the 1# rating, and what a change it was from other beers I’ve tasted, I’m kicking myself for not ordering more. This beer is at the top of its class, and rightfully so. There is so much going on in this beer it’s hard to describe. Every sip is different. Chocolate, raisons, and roasted caramel stood out most when I tasted it. Brilliant long lasting head, and gorgeous overall appearance. Highly recommended if you can get your hands on it. From what I understand, almost the only way to purchase this beer is to stand outside the monasterie in Westvleteren Belgium and pray the monks wish to distribute any that day. Phil (181) - Kent, ENGLAND - OCT 9, 2006
So, the best beer in the world? Well, it gave me my first emotional experience with beer, back in 1999! I’ve had the priviledge of sharing this beer with many many friends, I’ve probably given more of this away than I’ve drunk? Why? It is simply sublime, that fruity dark flavour, sweet, yet dry, but it’s that saline finish that for me seperates it from Rochefort 10. Best drunk, with friends, at In De Vrede. gladstone (23) - NORWAY - OCT 6, 2006
Finally, I got the chance to drink "the best beer of the world". A friend of mine hand it over from an outlet in Copenhagen where he had to ask in an extremely polite manner to please buy two bottles, one for him one for me.
I’ve had it in my celler for quite some time and today I drunk it.
And what can I say? First of all, it’s good. Very good. These monastery guys really know whats beer all about. Fruity, dark flavour, its got it all. I understand why beer lovers really love and love and love this beer over and over again.
However, for me, it’s too much of everything. I loved to drink it, I loved to smell it, I loved to feel it, but I didn’t love to feel its incredible taste. Not that it is not excellent (cause it is) not that it is not perfect (cause it probably is) but the hype is bigger than the beer from my point of view. It is objective fantastic, but subjective only GREAT.
I had problems finish it, probably mainly due to my love for not that complexe beers.
Still, what can I say? It’s what beers all about, but still too much of a really good thing.
As you probably understand, the beer puts me in a total duality of a fantastic experience and a feeing of drinkability and enjoyment. It was like "Shit, this beer is gooooood" with a grimmy face.
Thx munks, but youre not my first choice and probably never will be.