Tripel de RippleNovember 1, 2008 Indianapolis, IN
In 1934, the monks of Westmalle brewed the first tripel, a blonde ale of higher alcohol, very likely based on a blonde beer that had been brewed sporadically since 1931.
Golden marmalade color (no surprise there for a Belgian-style tripel), with aromas of bubble gum, banana, clove and especially citrus. Similar flavors on the palate, with some yeasty, bready notes thrown in the mix. The citrus gains momentum towards the finish which is very warming (thanks to the alcohol). I like that this beer isn’t overly cloying, as tripels sometimes can be, but you have to like citrus because it really stands out.
- John Hansell
There’s a certain phenolic note on the aroma of this golden ale from Indiana, one which I thought might be unique to my first bottle, but stubbornly remained in my second. It dissipates once the beer has breathed for a bit, but is nevertheless a bit off-putting on first encounter. Fortunately, that’s one of the very few negatives about Tripel de Ripple, which otherwise offers plentiful fruit both on the nose and in the body, along with some pleasantly spicy notes and not inconsiderable alcohol on the finish. I like the classic from Westmalle on its own, but I think this tripel begs for food, perhaps a roast turkey or goose.
- Stephen Beaumont
John Hansell is an equal-opportunity drinker. He writes about beer, wine and spirits. He is the creator, publisher & editor of Malt Advocate, a magazine for the whisky enthusiast.
Stephen Beaumont boarded his first plane at the age of 15 and hasn’t looked back since, obsessing about travel to the point that he gets nervous if he doesn’t have a ticket or two stacked on the corner of his desk. When he’s not running around in search of new taste experiences, he makes his home in Toronto, where a new cultural experience is only as far away as the next neighborhood.
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