Monday, July 16, 2012

Trappistes Rochefort 6


The Rochefort Trappist beers have been some of the most highly requested beers over the years so I decided to review all three in a row this week. We're obviously starting with the smallest and working our way up. I've actually never had any of these beers before, but I'm usually a fan of Trappist beers, so I had high hopes for these.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Chad9976 (697) - Albany, New York, USA - JUL 15, 2012
I poured an 11.2oz bottle into a Trappist chalice.

Appearance: Dark brown to mahogany color; opaque, but plenty of effervescence visible. Initially forms a large, beige, soapy head, but it fizzles away quickly and completely and leaves no lacing on the glass.

Smell: Lovely fruity esters - dark fruit basket and a hint of citrus.

Taste: I’ve had a lot of Trappist beers by now and the only thing I don’t like about them is that they have similar palates. Trappistes Rochefort 6, on the other hand, is quite different. Not technically a "dubbel" or a "quad", this is akin to an American brown ale but with a Belgian soul. Mild fruitiness up front with a hint of bitterness, it then changes on a dime to a confectionary sweetness of toffee and caramel and authentic apple cider spiciness right as it finishes. It’s one of the sweetest Belgian brews I can recall and it’s quite refreshing considering the style and weight. It’s not a very complex beer and seems to be missing a certain Belgian trademark, but that’s fine by me because it’s so delectable.

Drinkability: The mouthfeel to this beer is something of a paradox. Thin, tepid, cold and almost flat-out watery, Trappistes Rochefort 6 goes down very smooth like a flat soda. Yet, the fine carbonation from the bottle conditioning makes itself known by accumulating in the bottom of the throat - so yeah, you burp, but only once (which is preferable to after every swig with most other Trappist beers). The aftertaste is completely clean and it’s even quite refreshing with no alcohol presence whatsoever, which is nice for a 7.5% ABV Belgian brew. I would drink this in large quantities if it weren’t so expensive.

Grade: 8/10