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Westvleteren 12 Clone

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Westvleteren 12 Clone

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Beer Style: Dark Strong Ale 
Recipe Type: all-grain
Yield: 4 gallons


The Abbey of Saint Sixtus of Westvleteren makes 3 Trappist ales, the 6, 8, and 12. The Westvleteren 12, their 10% Belgian strong dark ale, is considered by many to be the best Belgian beer in the world.

This recipe builds a GF clone leveraging extensive knowledge collected by numerous others who have attempted barley-based versions of this beer. The highest acclaimed recipes calls for a simple base grain bill which involves some blend of Belgian Pilsner and Belgian Pale malts. To replicate the richness provided by the Belgian Pilsner malt, this recipe adds some Biscuit Rice Malt into a base grain bill, with pale rice, millet, and buckwheat.

Beyond the grains (and enzymes), every other element of this recipe is the same as many other Westvleteren clones with the exception of the bittering hop (though there is a decent amount of disparity between hops used for bittering for recipes).

I have not brewed this recipe yet, however intend to do so in the near future. I am hoping this recipe will serve as an exemplar for others exploring the gluten free Belgian brewing and looking for close equivalency to existing beers.

Tasting notes of Westvleteren 12:
Very full, creamy smooth and round-bodied aroma, average to good carbonation. Tart dark fruit, raisins, caramel sweetness, warming alcohol, tobacco and leather. Very lush and sincere beer, good malt flavor. Balanced taste, exceptionally complex with an aftertaste that lasts and ends with a dry finish. A taste and experience that is as individual as the person drinking it.


  • Grains
  • 10 oz Rice Hulls (0.0 SRM)
  • 7 lbs Pale Millet Malt (1.3 SRM)
  • 3 lbs 8.00 oz Biscuit Rice Malt (5.7 SRM)
  • 3 lbs 8.00 oz Pale Rice Malt (1.1 SRM)
  • 2 lbs Organic Pale Buckwheat (2.0 SRM)
  • Enzymes
  • 6.00 ml SEBstar HTL (Mash 120 min)
  • 5.00 ml AMG-300L (Mash 60 min)
  • 6.00 ml SEBflo TL (Mash 60 min)
  • Boil hops and adjuncts
  • 0.20 oz Pacific Gem [15.0%] - Boil 60 min
  • 0.80 oz Hallertauer Mittelfrueh [4.0%] - Boil 30 min
  • 0.80 oz Styrian Goldings [5.4%] - Boil 15 min
  • 2 lbs Candi Syrup, D-180 [Boil for 5 min] (180.0 SRM)
  • 1.50 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Boil 5 min)
  • Yeast
  • 1 pkgs Belgian Abbey (Mangrove Jack's #M47)

Additional Instructions

Primary Ferment: 14
Secondary Ferment: 14

Beer Profile

Original Gravity: 1.094
Final Gravity: 1.020
Alcohol by Vol: 10.0%
Color SRM: 34.0
Bitterness IBU: 35.0
Recipe Type: all-grain
Yield: 4.0 Gallons
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Mash in at 175 deg F adding 20.5 quarts of 191 deg water, add HTL enzyme, and hold for 60 minutes
Add 10 quarts of chilled to 42 deg F, SEBflo TL & AMG-300L, and hold for 60 minutes
Recirculate and sparge to collect 6 gallons of wort
Boil for 120 minutes, adding hop and sugar additions per ingredient timing
After boil, chill to less than 70 deg F
Pitch yeast, aerate for 120 seconds
Ferment starting at 70 deg F and allowing it to warm to ~80 deg F by the end
Hold in primary for 14 days until gravity has stabilized around 1.015 or less
Transfer to secondary for additional conditioning
Recommend bottle conditioning at 3.0 volumes adding 4.67 oz of corn sugar
Bottle condition for 3 months

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