Saturday, 9 May 2015

Trappistes Rochefort 10

Trappistes Rochefort 10 is a wildly strong abbey ale--it's potent like a trippel at 11.3%, but instead of a murky gold, it pours a dark, cloudy chestnut more characteristic of dubbels. It unbottles from its 330mL glass prison with a thin layer of cream-hued head, but this is short-lived. There is also a fair amount of sediment sitting at the bottom of my glass.

In terms of nose, 10 is fruity and warm, with raisin and berry notes--a very agreeable strawberry jam vibe was an unexpected treat. It's flavour is built on a malty, yeasty foundation. It's very gentle for such a strong ale--sweet, bashful fruit notes are plentiful, but nestled snugly and only begin to emerge as the beer warms. And speaking of warming, the alcohol lurks toward the finish, giving exhalations a boozy tint.

Born and bred in Rochefort, Belgium, and raised to maturity under the watchful eyes of Trappist monks at Abbaye St-Remy (it bears the "Authentic Trappist Product" emblem), 10 turned out to be a curious but cautious ale. Chalk-full of booze, it has a suggested playful quality, but uncapped, it is demure and restrained, with significant depth. A fine brew, 10 has more layers than an onion, and more alcohol than some pubs.

Rating: 9.0 out of 10.

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