Hoegaarden – Julius 54 B.C. Strong Blond Belgian Beer 8.5%
Hoegaarden – Julius 54 B.C. is a darker golden ale, with a toffee aroma with spicy notes. It has a strong warming malt sweetness, with hints of sweet-bitter liquorice and spicy clove running to the finish. The warmth of the ale lasts well after swallowing.
Julius 54 BC is a typical strong Belgian blond ale, not a trappist style ale, brewed by the international combine Inbev, originally based in Leuven, Belgium and the brewer of Hoegaarden Beers.
Pater 6 is a Belgian Trappist Ale dubbel brewed by St Bernardus. This is a deep red chestnut coloured ale, with a cream coloured head. It has a black currant aroma reminiscent of matured red Bordeaux and deep malt, with notes of toffee and spices.
A bottle conditioned ale the taste starts with a sharpness, giving way to a rich toasted malt sweet bitterness. The whole is warming as expected from a strong ale or barley wine.
The St Bernardus brewery commenced brewing in 1946 to commercialise the trappist ales originally produced by the monks at Westvleteren. The master brewer from the monastery became a partner of the new brewery, providing the recipes and know-how.
Mosaic Pale Ale is a golden coloured ale with a tropical passion fruit aroma replaced by grapefruit and pine resin notes. The taste is smooth with an initial sweetness, instantly followed by strong grapefruit bitterness carrying through to the aftertaste.
This pale ale is strong on grapefruit notes coming from the titular Mosaic hops used, typical of the American Pale Ale style made popular by the craft brewing movement.
Adnams Brewery is based in Southwold in Suffork and has been brewing since 1872. Since 2010 the Brewery also operates a distillery making variants of gin, vodka, whisky and rum!
This Belgian Ale, normally simply called Kwak, is a chestnut coloured ale with warming malt and sharp plum aroma and cream coloured head. The taste is strong malty sweet and orange marmalade sweet-bitter notes, with a deep warming taste and hints of spices, similar to traditional strong barley wine style ales.
The Bosteels Brewery was founded in 1791 and was sold to the conglomerate AB Inbev in 2016, having been run by the same family to that point. The ale is supposedly named after an 18th century brewer and innkeeper. The beer is filtered before bottling.
Kwak, like all Belgian beers, is served in a branded glass shaped like a ‘quarter yard of ale’, as can be seen on the bottle label. Because of the round bottom, the glass is held upright in a wooden stand.
The glass was, again supposedly, designed by Pauwel Kwak, the 18c innkeeper at his tavern and brewery ‘De Hoorn’ for the coachmen to carry, as the coaches did not stop. The real fact is this ale and its distinctive glass were not launched by the brewery until 1980. Pauwel Kwak’s loss is our gain.
This is a good warming ale, which should be drunk with caution, like many good Belgian ales, because of its very high strength.
Leffe – Brune has a dark red-chestnut colour, with a strong, sweet aroma of toffee and prune fruit. It has a rich sweet taste of caramel toffee, prune and a hint of liquorice, with a background of toasted malt caramel giving a very light bitterness.
Leffe brune is a traditional Belgian Trappist dark ale now produced by Anheuser-Busch InBev. Ales were brewed at Notre-Dame de Leffe monastery from 1240. The Leffe ales are still produced according to the Trappist recipes.
Leffe Brune, as with all Belgian beers, is normally served in its own goblet glass and is a good ale to drink sitting in the Grand Place in Brussels, particularly on colder evenings. Very suitable for the Christmas Market! A good ale for use in a beef casserole ‘Flemish Beef in Beer’ a speciality in Le Roy d’Espagne on the Grand Place.
Palm is a light chestnut amber coloured ale, with a malt and honey toffee aroma. It has a good, light warming malt flavour with a lightly balanced hop bitterness, making this a very good drinkable ale. It is similar to a good English ale.
Palm Breweries is based in Steenhuffel in Belgium and is top fermented in the Brabant style. English Kentish hops are used for this ale.