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Day #363 – Rochefort Trappistes 8 & 10

December 30, 2011

2 Days away! This project is finally coming to a completion and it couldn’t happen on a more impressive of a note. Today’s selection is a fantastic one, but there is more to celebrate than merely enjoying a good beer. I recently had a chat with a writer for the local paper, the Star-Telegram. Steve Campbell contacted me through my blog noting that he had been a long-time follower and was interested in doing a story on…well my story. I met with him on my birthday, over a pint and told my tale. The result is HERE, and for those of you who were brought here from Steve’s article, thanks for reading! Today’s selection will not disappoint.

Rochefort Trappistes 8 & 10

As today is a very special day indeed, I opted to feature not 1, but 2 awesome brews! Don’t worry, I didn’t break my rule of 1 per day as I shared them with a special person. 😉 Rochefort is one of the 7 breweries that officially carry the Trappist label, and they did not distribute to north Texas until very recently. I was super excited to find the 3 big ones here a few months ago and reviewed the Rochefort 6 as soon as I could. I decided to sit on the last 2 for a special occasion…and Day 363 seems special enough. The 8 is classified as a Belgian Strong Ale and checks in at 9.2% ABV. The 10 on the other hand is an Abt/Quadrupel and rings in at an impressive 11.3%! Very glad to be sharing these fine brews this evening.

Note: Both of these beers are bottle conditioned, meaning there is a small amount of yeast sediment remaining at the bottom of the glass.  Pour with caution, leaving the last quarter-inch in the bottle.

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Rochefort Trappistes 8

This beer pours a fairly dark brown color that turns quite orange in the light. It appears slightly murky in the light as well, but still maintains a bit of clarity. I was careful to leave the yeast sediment in the bottom of the bottle while pouring. It also forms a nice fizzy beige head which sticks around for awhile.

Aroma is lots of Belgian yeast and fruit tones. Dry smelling with some woody characteristics. Smells a bit strong but not alcoholic.

Flavor is dry wood and fruit. The fruit comes through as a grape/aged wine type taste. There is a big dry finish that leaves some bitterness lingering with a sharp tingle on the tongue. As it dries it almost starts to develop a chocolatey taste. Interesting, just a bit too dry.

Rochefort Trappistes 10

This beer pours a very dark brown color, and the murkiness on this one is very apparent when held to the light. Only a dark orange color comes through the light here. Tall fizzy beige head forms and disappears rather suddenly.

The aroma here is all dark fruit; plum, grape and raisins. Dark malts and sweet brown sugar with a woody balance.

The flavor is smooth, dark fruit again that leaves a lingering sweetness on the tongue. The tingle over the palate is noticeable immediately and almost pushes to a burn. The raised alcohol level here is certainly felt, but this one has more flavor to balance it out.

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Thanks so much to Steve Campbell for lending me his ear and for sharing my story with his readers.  Only 2 beers left….CHEERS!

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