Westmalle’s Tripel is a style-defining beer brewed at a Cistercian abbey in Malle, Belgium. Westmalle is a Trappist brewery, a designation enjoyed by only 6 other breweries in the world, all but one in Belgium (the other is Dutch). Trappist requirements define where the beer must be made, who must make it, the role it must play in the functioning of the abbey, and how profits are to be spent. It is a designation rather than a style, and non-Trappist beers structurally similar are often labeled “abbey”. “Tripel” itself is also not a style, rather a broad category. Most Trappist operations tend to produce three beers: a base beer, a stronger, darker beer, and an even stronger beer, which tends to be pale to golden. The strengths of the beers are defined with colored caps, numbers, and names. Popular wisdom holds that the “dubbel” and “tripel” designations came about due to brewers doubling and tripling their grain bill, resulting in doubly and triply strong beers, respectively. Brewed from the same recipe since 1956, Westmalle’s tripel is considered the archetype of the style and is widely imitated. It’s a golden-orange beer with considerable carbonation, intense complexity, ponderous depth, and nuanced aromatics.