Saturday, 14 March 2009

Duckstein Original


Venturing again into the non-Belgian universe, I now pick up the third German beer given to me by Michael on his visit to Brussels the other day. The first one, König Ludwig Dunkel, set a very high standard so is going to be a hard act to follow, that at least is clear from the start...

I am slightly nervous about the “Rotblondes” tag on the label of Duckstein Original. “Red blonde” is not something that draws me in given all the problems I’ve had with red beers. “Auf Buchenholz gereift” -- matured in beechwood -- is somewhat more comforting.

The pour reveals a clear, dark amber colour, little head, not cloudy -- nothing living in this bottle, obviously. What would the Belgians say?

The taste is immediately smooth with thin mouthfeel. A hint of caramel and powerful and lasting hop finish. There is something of a baked cracker in this, too, like a melba toast. 4.9% alcohol, well balanced with other flavours. If I had to compare it to a Belgian beer, I might say Affligem Dubbel, actually. Yum, in any case.

It seems the Hamburg-based brewery also sponsors a series of music festivals in various northern German cities in summer. Hmmm... more holiday ideas...

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