Sunday, 14 April 2013

Spring arrives with 3 Fonteinen

Spring. It finally showed up today. Or we at least finally got our first decent day in Brussels this year.

Everyone here has been moaning about the weather for weeks, and with good reason. It’s been crap on a stick without even the benefit of a stick. It really should not take until the middle of April to get a day where you can spend the afternoon outside.

But enough whinging. It’s time for celebration: at last, we can start opening some of these warm-weather beers we’ve been waiting an age to try.

The first is 3 Fonteinen Oude Gueuze “Golden Blend”, which is an awesomely tart sensation, with a lingering raspiness on the sides of the tongue like thin ribbons of wet sandpaper. Honey, but not at all sweet. Tree bark, but palatable. If this doesn’t quench your thirst on a hot day, then quite simply, you’re not thirsty.

The second, 3 Fonteinen Oude Kriek, pours a rich ruby red, and there’s a hint of musty leaf on the nose. The taste is a bit different from other traditional krieks I’ve had. There’s almost a suggestion of cherry cough syrup here, not in sweetness, of course, as this is as tart as the gueuze. But there’s a striking seam of something that lands like dried black cherries on the aftertaste -- and generally heartier, with a greater depth of flavour than other krieks.

Both are strongly recommended. Let’s hope the warm weather holds so you have an excuse to drink them.


  1. As soon we get some semblance of a Spring in Ireland I'm determined to finally give myself a Lambic education. Could you recommend any definitive examples?

  2. The De Ranke ones are very good -- perhaps better than the above. Tilquin is awesome. Marriage Parfait is astounding. Cantillon is the classic must-do, and for very good reason: they can't seem to make a bad one. I've tagged them all in past reviews:

    1. Strange coincidence - we've had some gorgeous weather today and yesterday, and not only that, but my favourite bottle shop just yesterday received a batch of Mariage Parfait, along with some Cantillon. I guess it's meant to be. Thanks!


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