‘Holy Grail’ of beers found with Trappist

Amber Englebert - Copy Editor

Amber Englebert – Copy Editor

Amber Englebert

If there is a Holy Grail out there for beer lovers, it can be named in one word: Trappist.

You cannot say you love beer and not try a Trappist. Trappist ales are some of the most delicious beers in the world, and some of the most difficult to acquire.

Trappist ales are Belgian-style beers produced by monks of the strictest Benedictine order, the Trappist monks.

Six of the breweries make their home in Belgium: Orval, Chimay, Rochefort, Westvleteren, Westmalle, and Achel.

Some of these breweries do not sell their beer outside of Belgium, or outside their own monasteries. From what I hear, they are worth the pilgrimage. What better way to experience wonderful beer than in a trip ordained by God?

If you have not the money or the time to take a trip to Belgium, there are a few available Trappists here in the states. The most widely available Trappist is Chamay, and the easiest bottles to get your hands on are the Rouge (Red), the Blanche, (White) and the Bleue (Blue). These beers vary in flavor and alcohol content. The White is strong and so hoppy it almost burns the tongue. The Red is sweet, with fruity aftertaste. The Blue I haven’t tried, but from what I hear it is spicy. Whatever the brew, they are all good.

I’ve only seen Chimay in a few places in town. Pizza by Stout has the Red, and the Creamery has the White in a huge bottle that requires a friend to finish unless complete inebriation is your goal for the evening. If you have an evening and a friend, go to either establishment and order the brews. I consider this a requirement.

Only a Trappist can top a Trappist. Orval is strong, fruity, and smooth. Those who like hoppy beers should stay clear of Orval, but the beer is better crafted than either of the Chimay brand I have tried.

The only place I have seen Orval in town is Pizza By Stout, at $6 a bottle. But it is worth the money and time to make a visit and try the beer.

Someday I’ll put on my sack cloth and make my way to Belgium. Until then, this is all I can say about Trappists since I haven’t tried them all. So, If you have a bottle of any Trappist in your hand, contact The Chart office. I’ll be your friend for an evening.