This geuze is absurd. First, it reminds me a ton of Girardin Black Label but is better in every way.
A - It pours super hazy bright yellowish orange with a healthy, thick, poofy white head that has crazy lacing and retention. This beer is from 2003!!! The best word to describe this beer is BRIGHT. The colors of it in the glass are almost neon and flavors explode out of the vessel.
N- You can smell of its nuances from a few feet away. There is no horse blanket, or funkiness to me. Instead there is ultra fresh grapefruit rind, curacao, blood orange, and white pepper in the nose. Super fresh, citrusy, and tart. The other times I've had this, I get lots of lavender, hibiscus, fresh cut flowers, lots of white peppery Brett, curacao, grapefruit peel, sweat.
T - Fairly sour, soft, not astringent or overpowering. It is very refined and complements the citrus flavors with an almost lemon/lime thirst quenching character. It is so spectacular that you really don’t want to sit down and write down what you thought about it. You just want to savor it and thank Jesus that such a fantastic creation exists on this planet.
P- Riveting carbonation at times can detract from the soft sourness and citrus complexity.
Price: $80.00 Served In: Pint Glass
Sweet Jesus! There are gushers and then there was this beer - as soon as the cage came off the cork flew out and hit d0b in the face. We also managed to get gueuze on two computers, the cat, my DVD cabinet, and the cheese tray. Thankfully no one was permanently blinded and we didn't lose a ton of brew.
A - Once the beer makes it into the glass it looks awesome. Huge billowy foam that eventually dissipates and leaves total glass-coating lacing. Opaque dark apricot color. This is about as good as it gets!
S - OK - there's funky, and then there is this beer. I feel like I'm sniffing a horse in the middle of a musty barn filled with must, dirt, and god knows what else. There's also some lemon sourness, leather, and super tart granny smith apples but after six years this is funk city. I'm not sure where else gueuze can go from this point.
T - The taste is excellent, but not as mind-blowing as the ridiculous smell. There's tons of barnyard funk, must, leather, tart unripened apples, and a crazy persistent dry and tart finish.
M - This is also a "wee" bit overcarbonated - there's some tingly burn on the upper lip and top palate. The texture is surprisingly softer than I tought it would be, and the finish is crazy dry with some light stickiness.
D - While I'd drink one of these on my own I think I might end up with a tummy-ache considering the funkiness. Still, I'd love to do this one again along with the Roos.
Served In: Tulip
A huge thanks goes out to Alex for cracking this bottle open and generously sharing! As soon as the cage was pulled off a gunshot was heard and d0b lay in waste from a cork to the eye. RIP! Luckily we didn't lose much nectar.
Blauw proudly shows off a glimmering apricot body with a bit of haziness through that absolutely glows when backlit. The dirty white head rises in no time to a billowy three fingers and shows remarkable staying power. The lacing left behind as the head falls and the beer gets drank is immaculate, Swiss cheese coating sheets. Blauw is easily on the best looking gueuzes I have ever run across and the retention lacing is crazy good.
Daaaamn! The funk is out of this world! The aroma is so packed full of musty, cheesy, barnyard, and citric aromas it's hard for me to even begin. Damp, decaying forest wood mustiness gets things moving before segueing into a horse blanket shoved directly into my nasal cavity. Gobs of acidic lemon juice and old, worn out leather add the perfect accompaniments. Not only is the smell of this beer deep but it's incredibly complex and constantly evolving as it sits in the glass. They should make this into an air freshener.
I didn't think there was any way the taste profile could ever live up to the aroma. Surprisingly it does and may actually surpass the smell. All the barnyard, cobwebbed mustiness that the nose showed is found full glory in the aroma. This gueuze is all encompassing funky AND sour. The tart, acidic lemon comes through the upfront mustiness cutting it down to perfect proportions. Worn leather and decaying, fallen wood bring up the rear. This is an amazing beer and one to be reckoned with.
I have to figure out somewhere to take some points off and the only place I can find is mouthfeel. The carbonation was a little on the high side after being in the bottle for 6 years. Surprisingly it never reached aggressive or prickly. As a matter of fact, the barely noticeable high level settled after a couple minutes in the glass to the light bodied snap that I was expecting.
The drinkability is off the charts. While this beer is a world of funk, which can tend to drag on with repeated drinking, the sourness cuts through perfectly to make this gueuze a refreshing drinker. A light body and carbonation on the higher side of the spectrum keep things moving, almost too easily. It's a hard beer to set down, I'll give it that.
I almost feel guilty giving this beer the two a couple less than perfect scores throughout the review. It was easily good enough to land perfects throughout, which is something I have never done and wouldn't like to do. With that said this is one of the best, most complex, enjoyable beers I have ever had and the clear winner (for me) in a night of incredible sours. Thanks again Alex, you crazy bastard!
Served In: Pint Glass
Sampled February 2008
Quite a gusher, half a second after popping the cork it starts to gush up and out. Luckily my glass was nearby so I didn't really lose any beer. I wasn't even able to get three fingers of beer into my tulip glass before it was full of foam though. The head is a light tan color and it sits on top of a lightly hazy, orangish tinged, light amber colored brew. As the head slowly subsides it produces spotty lacing patterns on the sides of my glass. The aroma is sharp and acidic with a substantial funkiness to it. The tart aromatics are certainly not one dimensional either, it is a mix of lactic, acetic and other funky acids. This smells of ripe cheese (more emmental than cheddar), plus it has a backdrop of funky, more farmhouse cheese notes. This has a substantial barnyard Brettanomyces influence here; goaty, sweaty, with lots of fungal woody notes. Speaking of wood, this seems to be much more wood influenced than your typical Lambic, it is spicy and almost has a cedar like note to it. If you really dig for them, there are still some noticeable grain notes here; these notes are in the finish and are dry, with a distinct character of fresh crushed wheat berries.
The beer is quite well carbonated, which adds a wonderful texture to this brew. It dances across the tongue in a light, airy manner, yet still has a fullness to it that keeps it from being anything near watery. Sharp and acidic, yet not over the top in it tartness; lactic acid notes form the larges component of the sourness, but there is flavors of lemons, sour grapefruit and a hint of acetic acid notes that help to round things out. In the finish there is a woody component that seems to provide some tannic structure as well as some light oaky spiciness. I like that body that this brew has, overall it is light and drinkable, but there is some influence here (tannins from the barrel seem the likely source) that provides this with a certain viscosity and heft that allows for a greater palate presence. The texture actually provides a really nice balance to the tartness, it almost mimics a sweetness in some ways, but most definitely keeps the sourness in check. The wild barnyard funkiness is not as noticeable as it was in the aroma, but still does contribute with notes of woody mushroom, lightly phenolic soaked cotton balls, some fermented bread like yeast character. Funky, phenolics & esters provide a sharpness to the middle of this brew all the while coupling with a substantive astringency. A flavor that is reminiscent of tart grapefruit becomes more noticeable as the beer warms up and overall the beer becomes much rounder and balanced.
This is eminently drinkable, the extra carbonation and slightly greater complexity (especially in the aroma), make me understand why this is better rated than its partner. I am especially relieved to get a Gueuze with actual Gueuze like carbonation levels, though this one might have been a wee bit overdone. The carbonation really is such a defining characteristic of a good Gueuze as it helps to bring to life so much of the aromas and flavors of the brew.
Served In: Pint Glass
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