Bottled Feb. 28 2004.
Cork pops, and streams of champagne bubbles are visible in the glass during the pour. Orangey body, with about 3 fingers of very fine foam.
Smells of damp soil, hay, and assorted farmy odors. This seems very earthy and natural, not unpleasant. Sharp wood and citrus note. The yeast becomes identifiable as it sits for awhile, it smells like old bread or even play-doh. The sediment is swirled and poured into separate glass, which releases an even more pronounced "stable funk" aroma.
Taste has an upfront citrus sharpness, mainly grapefruit and crabapple. It's tart and mildly astringent in the mouth. A dry oak taste in the middle with a rounder, earthy grain that comes out as it warms. Citric notes, Iron, grape, phenols, and mild honey in the aftertaste. Clean, dry finish.
The initial tartness isn't off putting, it gives way to mellow complexity after the mouth acclimates to it. A residual sweet tartness remains on the lips.
This is a benchmark of the style to me, even though currently my favorite Gueuze is Girardin Black Label 1882.
Served In: Flute Glass
Original review date 8/30/2008.
Thin wispy yeasty top over honey-colored, slightly effervescent body. A little carbonation.
Very potent aroma of sour citrus with that nice horse-blanket tone of brett with a fair amount of electric yeast, malt and wheat. Powerful yet bright.
Clean and crisp up front with loads of sour citrus with horsehide notes and a good oak bakckbone. Wheat, malt and electric yeast are solid supporting cast.
The very strong sour citrus and brett pucker really gets balanced with the oak aging of this effort as well as the strong grain presence, providing an outstanding feel and finish on the palate.
A stellar offering for a style that's a challenge for drinkability. Very enjoyable.
Served In: Tulip
2000 bottle Vintage, sampled in 2001 at Drie Fonteinen
After I had ordered the Gueuze the waitress went to the bar and requested a one. The barkeep then pulled out the traditional bottle of Lambic lying at a 15-degree angle in a wicker basket. The bottle was carefully opened and poured without disturbing the yeast. The beer when it was set down in front of me displayed a lively carbonation, a gold color, slightly hazy and a thick creamy head. Even from a distance the aroma was evident; displaying notes of fruit including citrus. When brought closer for an extended sniff it smelled quite sour with an evident Brett character. The taste was just about perfect. It was not as sour as Oud Beersel's Gueuze and was incredibly complex, with notes of wood, mustiness, a slight bitterness and almost a hint of what I can only describe as wild mushroom. This was definitely the best Gueuze I had ever had.
Bottle Date 11 December 2000. Sampled May 2004 at the Hopleaf, Chicago.
The aroma is sharp, acidic, and catpee. The taste is dry, and sour with notes of lemon, grapefruit (which is more pronounced), tannin, subtle vanilla notes, and a sharp herbal grassiness. There is a somewhat restrained Brett character, but there are notes of leather. This is a very well integrated beer, it is also quite light, as is expected. This goes quite well with the mussel apetizer that I am currently having.
Served In: Pint Glass
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