Saturday 30 April 2011

Spring Cleaning 2011

With the weather in Brussels absolutely amazing in recent weeks, we’ve been out on the terrace sun-trap nearly every evening. But while it feels like summer has arrived early, I still have a stack of tasting notes from the winter months I need to get through. So, as I sit outside on yet another incredible afternoon, I’d better get down to it.

Wednesday 27 April 2011

Lammsbräu Dinkel & Dunkel

These are two organic beers from Neumarkter Lammsbräu, which is a leader in "bio" beers in Germany. Results were mixed.

Neumarkter Lammsbräu Dinkel is made from spelt, and it has quite a Hefeweizen flavour at first. That then evolves into a sweet fine fizz and lime zest note and a crackery aftertaste. Not bad.

The second beer, Neumarkter Lammsbräu Dunkel, has an appealing burnt orange colour, but the taste is thin. There's only a hint of bitterness, but it's not got much sweetness either. No outstanding notes. Overall, there's just nothing that exciting in this one.

Ammerndorfer Bier Bock

This long-overdue tasting note looks at Ammerndorfer Bier Bock, a bottle of which Michael kindly brought to Brussels one day a few months ago and which was consumed not long after.

The taste first comes across as a bit sweet and, if you believe Bob, "slightly medicinal", but those two elements then blend, so the herbs and caramel marry well.

It may sound strange, but to me it's a bit like an herbal Aufguss you get in a sauna: woody, warm and sharp, yet relaxing and comforting at the same time.

Rodenbach Vintage 2008

Yes, yes... after almost three months of not posting here, I'm now backlogged with tasting notes and trying to crank out a few blog entries...

Bob is not going to believe this one, but I found a Rodenbach I like, which is quite something, considering our earlier attempts. This find is thanks to JC and Bie, who invited us to their housewarming party in Gent last month and served up a bottle.

Rodenbach Vintage 2008 has that sour vinegar element like other Rodenbachs, but this one is mellow, and some sweetness kicks in quite quickly. The slight caramel taste matches its lovely chestnut colour, but the best part is the pomegranate note.

You'll have to try it, Bob, sorry...

Brakspear Triple

This bottle-conditioned British ale pours far darker than I'd expected - a deep copper colour. The taste is sweet and bitter competing for attention in equal measure, with the alcohol (7.2%) announcing itself loudly too.

There's a gorgeous licorice note in the aftertaste, and that just rounds this out perfectly.

Altogether, it may not conform to what I'd call a triple, but who really cares about the strict classification of styles? This is a very tasty treat regardless.