On my list of things to do when I visit Belgium is to try out many of their beers which do not reach Vancouver. That is basically 99.9% of all their beers. I didn’t have the luxury of time on my side, but I did try 6 different beers on my 2 day Belgium stay. All of them I tried with food as all the beers I enjoyed all had 6 percent or higher alcohol content.
Have you ever had Belgian beer? They do have a wide range of beers and styles of beers. I am personally drawn to the Trappist-style beers, which tend to be a fuller bodied beer. If you would like to know about the different styles of Belgian beers, here is the Wikipedia link.
My Beer Reviews
The first beer was Corsendonk bruin. This is a dark, sweet beer, with a great head, as you can see in the picture. The beer though lacked intensity of flavour. Next was the Grimbergen Dubbel. Another dark style beer. There was the dark malt flavour, and a better intensity than the Corsendonk. Quite a nicely flavoured beer. The third beer was the Palm Ale. This is Belgium’s overall favorite beer. The motto for their beer I’ve been told is “Have a Palm and stay calm“. While the previous two beers were smooth and had chocolatey flavours, this beer was lighter in colour and a cross in aroma and flavour between a Pale Ale and an India Pale Ale (IPA). The change in flavour profile sparked my taste buds. I enjoyed this beer with a Flemish beef stew.
The last 3 beers were tried together: St. Bernardus Prior 8, Brugge Tripel, and Trappistes Rochefort 10. The 8 and 10 numbers indicating percent alcohol of these beers. The first beer, the St. Bernardus Prior 8 was an interesting beer. It is a bottle fermented beer (fyi Champagne is also bottle fermented). When I poured the beer I did notice that it had lots of small bubbles which lasted for a long time. Deep chocolate brown, lots of bubbles and a very foamy head. Medium body with chocolate flavour. Not too hoppy.
Brugge Tripel is a blonde beer and comes in with 8.7% alcohol. Good head with lots of bubbles. Quite hoppy with some cinnamon and some skunkiness. Very nice nose. Dry with medium body. Medium level of bitterness with sweet spices and lemon on the palate. Long lasting hoppy flavour. Excellent.
Trappistes Rochefort 10 was the last of my Belgium beer comparison. Although it says 10, it is actually 11.3% alcohol. It is produced by Abbaye St. Remy. Dark brown with medium brown head. Quite alot of head. Cherries and chocolate on the nose. Lots of bubble in your mouth. Caramel, earthy and chocolate on the palate. Smooth mouthfeel with low bitterness and hoppiness. Not a bad beer, but need a plate of grilled meat to enjoy it with.
Which beer was my favorite?
It was the Brugge Tripel. I could drink many bottles of this beer and not get bored with it. It has lots of complexity. If you are a BC importer of wine, beer, and spirits, please take a chance on this beer. Cheers!