Tasting Notes: Tripel Triple versus my House APA

Tripel versus APA

Not sure what I was thinking about dual tasting notes of such widely varying beers. First is the Tripel Triple, a very malty tripel brewed with mexican piloncillo sugar that added a very nice touch. Second is the House APA – my house calibration American Pale Ale, brewed with high levels of sulfates and calcium and NO crystal malts for a nice sharp and dry finish.

It is actually striking to see and taste the differences. Both were fermented fairly low for good attenuation, but the mouthfeel is extremely different – largely due to widely different water profiles. The tripel was brewed to match a Belgium water profile – why the APA was pushed toward a moderately extreme (half of the Burton profile) level of sulfate.

I tried to use the Ratebeer model for a change. Probably blew it. 🙂

Ratebeer Style Tripel Triple House APA
Aroma Malty sweetness, caramel, ripe bananas, light clove and spice


Sweet Cascade upfront, light pine and lemon, citrus


Appearance Dark orange, very clear, rocky white head that falls quickly but laces. Not as clear as the APA, but acceptable.


Very clear pale yellow. White frothy head, laces in long strings. Can follow drinks down glass


Taste Lightly caramelized banana, more fresh than ripe. Very subtle cinnamon and clove. Definite yeast phenols, but not overbearing. No hop characters. No alcohol heat. Could use some complexity.


Nicely dry, classic Cascade and CTZ hop character. Hop bitterness is clean and slightly sharp, flavor lingers. Little sweetness or maltiness. Hoppier than Sierra Nevada Pale Ale – nears west coast IPA bitter.


Palate Medium body, but not heavy or cloying. Light carbonation after head falls.


Light body. Dry finish. Refreshing. Well carbonated and sparkling.


Overall Spice has lessened with age and carbonation. Better younger despite the ABV @ 9%


Classic American Pale Ale character, with a dry biscuit malt backbone. Recognizable Cascade and CTZ aromas and flavor.


I am always nervous scoring my own beers well, but these are two of my favorites and in my brewing rotation at least twice a year. Belgians are some of my very favorite styles with extreme variety of phenols and spice. I have been working very hard to nail my APA recipe and water profile, and finally have an APA worth sharing with brewer friends.

There are a few changes I might make to the Tripel to up the game that I need to think through.

As always – love a great lacy beer!

Tripel versus APA Lacing



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