Saturday, 13 November 2010

Achel Blond Extra

On a quick trip to the monastery of Achelse Kluis a few weeks ago, I spotted 750ml bottles of something I'd never seen before: Achel Blond Extra. Now, Achel Brune Extra is one of my all-time favourites, with a well-deserved place in my list of top ten Belgian beers, so I picked up two bottles of the Blond Extra, expecting great things.

Well, it was something of a disappointment. The first taste is sweet. Too sweet. If you stretch your imagination a bit, you might detect notes of celery, ginger and cinnamon. Bob thought it reminded him of Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice Herbal Tea. But really, all that's a bit of a push: hazy visions through a thick fog of sweetness.

So, Achel Blond Extra won't make the top ten list any time soon, but maybe I should give it some time. I'll cellar the second bottle for a couple years and see if we can get some of those sugars eaten up to evolve the tastes a bit.

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