The Mad Brewer
November 6-7 2000
|De Brugse Bierkaai is a new brewpub in a city with a long
Blond 5.5%, 65 Bfr: Tastes like an under age lager, amber color, good clarity. Not a Belgian style beer, watery. Perhaps a welcome change.
Dubbel 95 Bfr: Rich, dark, warming, drinkable, soft, reasonably complex. Definitely worth a try.
Trippel: Traditional approach, not as dry as some, but close. Very clear, probably filtered. Toned down aroma and flavor. A good beer, but it seems to have an American influence on it.
Keldercafe del Zolder
Homing Bier t'Smisje, 6%, 105 Bfr. Amber honey beer by a local brewery. Light, refreshing, dry finish.
St Bernardus Abbey 12, 95 Bfr, From the tap. Some oxidation, somewhat harsh finish.
They are out of the Hanssen's Kriek, and have only a single bottle of 3 Founteinene Oude Geuze, so we split it. Wonderful horsey aroma, soft finish, we really need another. 160 Bfr/375 ml, 5%
They are out of Liefmans' Kriek as well, we have exhausted the dry Lambic supply.
Arabier (De Dolle), 105 Bfr 8%. Sweeter than the brewery version.
Guilden Draak, 110 Bfr, 10.5%. Big malty aroma, and sweetish flavor.
Hanssens Kriek, old, but undated 160 Bfr. The non-cappable bottle is a giveaway. I don't know why they served us this bottle, but it was intentional, and very welcome. Nice wild aroma, flavor is amazing, and tart. A real find. 5 stars. Too bad they don't have any more.
Hannsens Oude Gueze 150 Bfr. Similar aroma, but no fruit, softer flavor, no where near the complexity of the Kriek. An excellent lesson in aged Lambic.
Cantillon Gueze 150 Bfr. Nice dry bit, puckery, aroma not fully matured, 1997 bottling.
Cantillon Frambozen. Also very dry, more complex aroma, same age. Perhaps a better choice if you only want one.
Rodenback Grand Cru. Better than the Bruin of the same brewery.
Westvlertern 12 10.8%. For Kim, of course. Big malty, but not sweet. "A good session beer", say Kim, "For a very short session", say I.
Optimo Bruno (Grimbergen) 10%. Dark, soft, and drinkable.
Galoise 9 Brown 8.5%. Too cold. A tasty brew.
De Troche Gueze, labeld as Cuvee Chapeau Lambic 140 Bfr. Softer aroma and flavor than 3 Fountains, but not too bad. Unfiltered.
La Chuffe Blond. Garson, Garson, there's a hare in my beer!
Rodenbach bruin. Served in a half liter.
St. Sixtus 12. Still too astringent, but otherwise OK.
Stupid American Tourists
Brugge is overrun with tourists from the states. In De Garre, a couple ordered a large bottle of beer. After it was delivered to the table, one of them asked "What's the pepper for?". It was the cork. Maybe they just need to get out more.