Sunday, January 13, 2013

Beer Review: Trappist Westvleteren 12 (aka Westy 12)

Reviewing the Trappist Westvleteren 12 (aka Westy 12) from the monks of Brouwerij Westvleteren (Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren) out of Belgium.
Score: 93

Unknown vintage bottle (the dates were rubbed off on the cap). Served in a snifter glass and enjoyed on 06/23/12 at the inaugural Chicago craft beer lovers meeting. Huge thanks to Robbie Moy for sharing this one with me. Review is from iPhone notes.

Appearance: Pours a murky caramel color with a thin layer of tan bubbly head. 4/5

Smell: Sweet and fruity. Sugary caramel, berries, blueberries, plum, brandy, raisins, and bready clove too. 4.5/5

Taste: Exactly like it smells, with a lingering fruitiness. 4.25/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-light bodied, low carbonation. Juice-like mouthfeel. Fruity, dry finish. 4/5

Overall: All-in-all, I enjoyed this one. However, I did not think that it lived up to its lofty hype as one of the world's best beers. I am told that this one is best aged, but I also had a 2009 bottle at Dark Lord Day this year that I was not overly impressed with either (although in all fairness, that other bottle had been sitting open on a table for several hours before I got a chance to try it). I personally liked Westy 8 better, but I will have to try to age the bottle I have for several years to see if my opinion of this brew changes with time.

Recommendation: While an excellent beer, it's not quite worth it's trade weight. Nonetheless, it is a delicious beer that is worth drinking if you get the chance to sample this beer.

Pairings: Banana bread.

Cost: $85 for a "brick" that comes with six 12 oz bottles and two Westy 12 glasses.

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