Fermented by an abbey ale yeast and bottle conditioned. 8% ABV
Tröegs Brewing Co., Hershey, PA
By Bill Lau
Posted August 13, 2014
If you’ve read my about me page, you’ll have noticed that Belgian-style tripels are one of my favorite beer styles. I enjoy the complex character that a good tripel gets from the yeast and higher temperature fermentation. I can also admit that I’m a bit of a sucker for beers bottled with a cork & cage, especially when they come in convenient portion size (375 ml in this case, thank you!). So even though I’ve been on a bit of a session beer kick for the summer, I couldn’t pass this one up. Besides, even though they clock in at higher ABV, tripels usually have a lighter body and palate from the addition of some brewing sugars, which punch up the alcohol production without making the beer heavier (like a barleywine, for example).
The bottle opened with a strong pop! when I carefully eased the cork out. I had chosen a tulip glass to enhance the aromas and provide room for the anticipated head. Good thing, too!
LaGrave poured out a deep golden-amber hue with a light haze, generating several fingers’ worth of rocky, dense off-white head as a crown. Beautiful! The foam gradually settled to about a third of that volume after several minutes.
Appetizing aromas of crisp malt, yeast phenols and earthiness and a spiciness with a hint of noble hop wafted from the glass. Very nice. And very Belgian. Off to a great start thus far!
Highly effervescent carbonation with a fine, champagne-like bead that tickled my tongue. Body on the lighter side of medium, appropriate to style.
Flavors delivered a complex melange of spices (with hints of cardamom, coriander, and faint clove), fruity esters (banana, mango), and a yeasty earthiness. Crisp, crackery malt discernible. Bitterness was light initially but increased late to lend some dryness to the finish. Earthy finish with a bit of a mildly sour tang. Alcohol made its presence known through its effects but not on the tongue. Potent and delicious!
Really delivered a great Belgian-style character from the yeast and fermentation. Well done.
Rating: Appearance: 5/5 Aroma: 9/10 Palate: 5/5 Flavor: 8.5/10 Overall: 18.3/20