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Just What Is Trappist Beer?

on 23/01/11 at 9:52 pm


On December 29th, 2010, a fire broke out during the evening meal at the Trappist Abbey of Rochefort, Belgium. The massive flames rolled through the complex of buildings and eight fire engines fought back the flames. At the news, hundreds of beer enthusiasts spluttered: Are the monks alright? While deep down inside, they prayed: What about the beer?

By morning, the abbey and mayor were happy to report that no one had been hurt and that the library and brewery had survived. An inaudible sigh of relief rippled through the beer connoisseur community, signifying the importance of Trappist beer.

What is Trappist Beer

Comparable to Rolls Royce, Dom Perignon and the Hope Diamond, Trappist Beer represents a unique classification of beers. In 2010, Beer Advocate updated its Top 10 list of Best Beers on the Planet. Four were Belgian brews; three boasted the coveted Trappist Beer designation.

All Trappist beers satisfy two requisites:

  • They must be brewed onsite at a Trappist Abbey in Belgium
  • They must be brewed for non-profit purposes

The result is high-quality, full-bodied beer with a floral bouquet and smooth finish.

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