The not-quite patersbier is on tap, and the Tripel that followed just got racked into the keg.
So generally I never have two beers from the same category around at the same time; I crave variety. That's mostly why I didn't want to brew this not-quite patersbier according to style. I succeeded, it is NOT according to style; this tastes nothing like a patersbier, so I don't know what to call it.
In addition to the non-Belgian-y citra hops, I also kept the fermentation temps down at the lower end for the whole fermentation, which again, goes against what to do with a belgian yeast. As an additional irony; the Tripel is an extract kit that my kids got for me as a gift, while the not-patersbier is an AG recipie I made up. So in essence I made an All grain yeast starter for an Extract beer. I do everything backwards.
Comparing the not-patersbier to the Tripel...
The not-Patersbier is light and fruity. I wouldn't necessarily call it sweet, but it sure isn't as dry as you'd think for a 1.052OG that finished at 1.007. The WLP500 page says it develops plum at lower temps, I'm not sure what fruits I'm tasting, but maybe it's plum mixed with the citrusy flavors from the hops... I really like the beer, so that's what matters. I might argue that after I racked it off the cake, it could have done with a little dry-hopping, but the wife likes it as-is, so there you go.
The Tripel I handled as expected. I started fermenting low, and let it rise into the 80's before finishing. It started at 1.083 and finished at 1.017. I wanted it to get lower, but for an extract it's probably OK. Since it's in a keg I'm not going to worry about bottle bombs. The tripel has that corriander/clove spice that I expect in an a tripel. The 1017 is not as dry as I want, and there was still a bit of sweetness in the flat sample we tasted. I'm expecting once it's carbbed, the balance will shift just a bit more toward the bitter, and it will end up as a nice example of the style, if maybe not award winning.
The two beers really highlight how temperature can be as important as any ingredient in the recipe. Side-by-side I would be hard-pressed to guess that the same yeast fermented both beers. One fruity, one spicy.