I have tried almost all of the St. Bernardus beers available in the United States and I have never been disappointed. For some strange reason I am just getting around to trying the Tripel. One word...fantastic. I am enjoying a nice 750 ml bottle of it right now and it is a solid 4.7 out of 5 in my ratings.
It is a manageable 8% abv. This tripel pours bright orangish gold with a thick white head with wonderful retention--it is about 1.5 inches on each pour, even after sitting for an hour or so. This beer smells amazing...floral hops, caramel, candy sugar and banana with touches of pepper and clove scents throughout. It has a nice refreshing carbonation that tingles the mouth all over. You can really taste the spicy clove and pepper flavors with each sip, but they are not overwhelming. Fantastic fruitiness with citrusy hops, ripened pears, apple skins, and subtle berry flavors. It has a very refreshing medium body and an excellent mouthfeel. There is some warming in the back of the throat, but the 8% abv does not overwhelm you. It finishes dry and always maintains an interesting balance of sweet malts, sugar, and spicyness with each sip.
Wow, this is a fantastic beer! Each sip tastes different and goes down so damn smoothly. Simply put, this is another masterpiece from Saint Bernardus.