Here’s a start to my beer postings. Below is a photo of the small collection I gathered and tasted over a couple of months. These are “special beers”, meaning I drink one bottle every couple of weeks.
I wish I had written down my assessment of these lovely beers at the time because my memory has faded and I cannot recall the subtle, wonderful tastes and qualities of each. I can only remember which ones that I’d buy again or not!
Aventinus: An excellent choice and cheap too! This wheat doppelbock is spicy and pleasing. I buy a few bottles (if I can find them) everytime I hit my local Specs.
Saison Dupont: A good all-around beer (“Belgian Farmhouse Ale”). Nice-n-tastey, good for quenching your thirst after a hot, sweaty afternoon. I seem to recall this won some “best beer in the world” contest a while back. Not sure about that, but it is an excellent brew.
St. Bernardus (Belgian Abby Ale): Now there are two flavors here: 1) Abt 12 – the blue label, and 2) Tripel – the green label. Both are classic “liquid bread” Belgian ales. There are subtle differences between them, but they are both hearty, strong beers best enjoyed cool (and not ice cold) and sipped slowly. Preferably on the couch or outside on the swing during a nice, cool evening. These are some of my top favorites (along with Maredsous).
Poorter – Hoogstraten: The guy at my local Specs advised me on this one, and I wasn’t disappointed. Hearty and strong, much like the “liquid bread” ales, this one was excellent. I’m going to have to try it again soon.
The Reverend (Avery Brewing Co.): I came across this by accident. Some good beer-drinkin’ friends of ours gave this to me just because my name was on the bottle (Avery). This one is a very nice beer – reminiscent of the “liquid bread” Belgian ales, perhaps with a bit more spice.
Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse and Westmalle Trappist Ale: I wasn’t too impressed with these two. They were much like the “liquid bread” ales but lacked something crucial to provide that wholesome, full taste. Can’t say that I’d buy these again.
** Note: All of the above (with the exception of perhaps the Dupont) are really strong and hearty beers. I use the term “liquid bread” to describe most of them because that’s probably the best way to relate the taste (and calorie content) to people who aren’t familiar with the typical monk-brewed Belgian ale. Drink them slowly and in moderation. Most evenings, a single bottle is sufficient They are usually 8 – 10% alchohol and come in 3/4 liter bottles.