June 2014 - Continental European Ale Styles

This month's Beer feature is Continental Europeanan Ale Styles
Continental European Ale Styles Reviews
206503
Westmalle
Trappist Dubbel
Hypnotic reddish mahogany color. Rich aromas of toasted banana-raisin muffin and spicy vanilla custard with a satiny, fruity-yet-dry medium-full body and a long, elegant finish with notes of caramelized nuts and dried fruits, peppery spice, and earth. A fantastic flavor ride and an archetype of the style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206504
Westmalle
Trappist Tripel
Cloudy sunset orange color with a fine blanket of eggshell white foam. Attractive aromas of orange marmalade on multigrain bread and peach soufflé with a supple, fruity medium-full body and a long, rich, tightly knit fabric of herbs, peppery spices, honey, fruits, minerals, and radishes on the finish. An amazing tripel that sets the benchmark for the style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206505
Brasserie d’Orval
Orval Trappist Ale
Rich hazy amber color with a fine blanket of bone foam. Beguiling sweet and sour aromas suggest sourdough, apple cider, leather, barnyard wood, clay, and spiced pears with a rich, frothy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a long well meshed finish of nuts, grains, dried fruits, peppery spice and minerals. A fantastic example of a brett-influenced, but not dominated, Belgian pale ale. Relish with charcuterie.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206506
Brasserie du Bocq
Saison 1858
Hazy golden yellow color. Floral aromas of peony, lychee custard, and toasted herb-spice bread with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a long medley of honeyed honeyed orange, nuts, and edible flowers. Impressive in range and depth of flavor; a sipping saison.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206374
Brasseurs du Monde
L'Assoiffe 10
Pretty golden amber color. Bright aromas of Indian spice cake, lemon poppyseed muffin, and ginger with a rich, fruity medium-full body and a long, tangy and complex interplay of savory herbs, Asian spices, and earthy green notes. A wonderful beer for sipping or the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206606
Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling
La Bestia Aimable
Dark mahogany brown color. Aromas and flavors of honeyed dried cherries and chocolate nougat bar with a supple, fruity medium-full body and a long, chewy, pepper bread and melon nuanced finish. Great flavor and balance that is sure to please.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206497
River North Brewery
Quandary
Reddish mahogany color. Aromas of honey, cherry vinaigrette on greens, and chocolate graham crackers with a supple, fruity medium-full body and a long, raisin bread, pepper, and kale driven finish. A great umami-accented beer for the table, especially savory meat or mushroom dishes.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206327
Unibroue
17 Grande Réserve
Copper mahogany color with a manilla mousse. Intricate aromas of chocolate, mint, curry spices, rubber sap, ginger, and cola with a supple dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smoked meat, pepper, grilled citrus, brown sugar, and spice accented finish. Tasty, multilayered and spot on for the style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
205925
Full Sail Brewing Co.
LTD 04 Pale Bock
Golden color. Fruit aromas of honeyed grapefruit and bread pudding with a zesty dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a snappy pepper frittata and grassy hop kick on the finish. A great, zesty maibock.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206490
Rahr & Sons Brewing Co.
9th Anniversary Ale
Cloudy golden yellow color. Attractive aromas of peach and pineapple custard tarts, buttercream, herb bread, nougat and clay with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tangy honeyed melon, mango, papaya yogurt and peppercorn finish. Exotically delicious.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204306
Reuben’s Brews
Belgian Imperial Rye IPA
Deep amber color. Lovely, yeasty fruit custard pastry, singed citrus, bubblegum, grass, peppercorn and honeyed rye toast aromas with a supple, frothy, fruity-yet-dry medium-full body and a long, complex finish with waves of arugula, radish, honeyed grapefruit peel, and grass. A great food beer.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204004
Brouwerij Van Steenberge
Witches' Brew Golden Ale
Minutely hazy pale amber color with a firm fine blanked of foam. Bright aromas of honeyed orange, apple butter, praline, and yeasty lemon cake with a crisp, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a vibrant, warming, fruit, spice, pepper, and honey driven finish. Very tasty and refreshing; will be great at the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
205294
Stone Brewing Co.
- Stone 12.12.12 Vertical Epic Ale
Brown black color with a tan lace. Complex aromas of jerk chicken rub, spicy mincemeat pie, and dark chocolate orange peels, and citrus blossoms with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a long, chewy bakers chocolate, chestnut, bitter espresso, peppercorn, and straw accented finish. Great complexity, vibrancy, and in your face swagger.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206086
Issaquah Brewhouse
Ménage Á Frog
Bright golden amber color. Aromas of herb buttered toast, orange and lemon curd with a chewy, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and a drying wave of caramelized fruits and nuts, pepper, baking spices, and greens. A nicely styled and flavorful domestic tripel.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
205018
King Brewery
King Pilsbock
Minutely hazy amber color. Aromas of sweet orange marmalade and apple butter on toast and peach vinaigrette on lettuce with a crisp, frothy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tangy, lightly chewy pepper omelet and sprouts accented finish. Quite tasty and refreshing.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206326
Unibroue
17 Grande Réserve
Hazy mahogany red color. Aromas of bbq spiced poultry, melon, and ginger snaps with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a zesty spiced apple, citrus, lit cigar, and toffee finish. Very tasty and complex.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
205206
August Schell Brewing Co.
Schell's Snowstorm Belgian Style Golden Ale
Bright golden yellow color. Aromas of spicy peach soufflé and pastry with a subtle, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a long, elegant interplay of chamomile tea, acacia honey, pepper bread and spiced nuts. Delicious and well crafted.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206544
Delafield Brewhaus
Frühlingzeit Maibock
Amber color. Aromas of honeyed toast, dried fruits, and soufflé with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a chewy, candied citrus, grilled root vegetable, and peppery hop snap. Nicely balanced and true to style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206492
Grand Rapids Brewing Company
The Log Jammer Maibock
Deep amber color. Aromas of bread flour, orange muffin, pepper, and banana soufflé with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tangy, toasty, well balanced finish. A very quaffable and true to style maibock. Bring on the sausages.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206020
Hanson Brothers Beer Company
Mmmhops
Amber color. Fruity hop and caramelized malt aromas and flavors with a slightly chewy dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a combination of resinous hops and earthy, mineral notes on the finish with a reveal of peppery alcohol. Rather like a sessionable British double IPA in style (if such a thing exists) and a good one at that. Drink up.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206484
Hudsonville Pike 51 Brewing Co.
Topless Tripout
Golden amber color. Hoppy aromas of grapefruit custard, oregano, nuts and clay with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a tangy dried apricot, mango sorbet, peppered greens, and spice. A fun, flavorful, west coast take on the style that is sure to please hopheads.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206385
Belgh Brasse
Mons Rousse D'Abbaye
Rich mahogany red color with a fine taupe mousse. savory aromas of roasted chestnuts, brown sugar, sourdough rye, and salted caramel with a silky, dryish medium body and a crisp, roasted grain, straw, and mineral driven finish. A fine example of a dry, highly drinkable and table attuned Belgian amber ale.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204305
Reuben’s Brews
Balsch ™
Lightly hazy golden brassy color. Aromas of toasted baguette, roasted corn, and herbal, grassy hops with a crisp, finely foamed, dryish medium body and a nice peppery, bittering hop and roasted root vegetable flourish on the finish. Very stylish and refreshing.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206128
Samuel Adams
Maibock
Copper color. Fruity aromas of dried bananas and orange bread with a chewy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tangy, peppered greens and soufflé accented finish with pleasant warmth. A nice domestic take on the style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206419
Sprecher Brewing Co.
Abbey Triple
Clear golden amber color. Aromas of banana pudding and mincemeat pie with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a long, refreshing salty baguette, peppery spice, lettuce, and cantaloupe finish. A rock solid domestic tripel with great drinkability.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206323
Unibroue
Noire de Chambly
Dark russet brown color with a fine taupe mousse is very atypical of the singel style. Aromas of molasses, pepper muffin, and sassafras with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a dried fruit, sprouts, and mesclun accented finish. Different, but nice.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206379
Grizzly Peak Brewing Co.
Le Grand Portage
Copper color. Aromas of orange marmalade on toast and toffee with a supple, fruity medium-to-full body and a tangy citrus gelato, pepper, and herb accented finish. A pleasant, very drinkable biere de garde.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206381
Grizzly Peak Brewing Co.
Annie's Spring Elixir
Golden color. Aromas of banana bread, mango tart, and radicchio frittata with a supple, dryish medium body and a lightly chewy and savory sweet potato chip, pepper bread, and radish sprouts finish. A fun choice for the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206496
River North Brewery
J. Marie
Amber color. Aromas of wilted lettuce, honeyed banana nut muffin, and pepper frittata with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a tangy, warming spiced apple, radish, and mineral accented finish. A flavorful saison for the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206331
Unibroue
Blonde de Chambly
Lucid golden amber color. Aromas lemon verbena and apple sorbet with a crisp, fruity-yet-dry medium body and spicy orange custard, wheat wafer, nutskin, and coriander snap on the finish. Not exactly a saison but very tasty.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206380
Grizzly Peak Brewing Co.
Victor's Gold
Pale golden color. Aromas of tropical fruit tart and grilled citrus with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a zesty, tangy, roasted nut and peppery hop accented finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204003
Brouwerij Van Steenberge
Vampire Pale Ale
Slightly hazy pale amber color. Aromas of yeasty fruitcake, lemon poppy seed muffin, baking spice, and buttered baguette with a tangy, frothy, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and an emphasis on honeyed dried fruit, sprouts, wheat wafer, and grass on the long, lightly peppery finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206542
Gore Range Brewery
Dub Sty
Aromas and flavors of caramelized apples and pears with a supple, fruity medium body and a tangy candied citrus, custard, and herb-pepper bread snap on the finish. A nice quaffer or cheese beer.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206493
Hopcat Brewery
Red Nymph
Deep reddish mahogany color. Aromas of cherry vinegar and honey roasted chestnuts with a supple, tangy medium body and a spiced apple, pepper toast, and greens finish. A pleasant, easy drinking sour.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206510
The Brooklyn Brewery
Brooklyn 1/2 Ale
Bright golden color. Aromas of lemon grass and pepper, plantain chip, and tangerine soufflé and sweet spices with a supple, dryish light-to-medium body and a tangy papaya coconut custard, radish, and peppercorn finish. A rather exotic session version of the style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206491
Grand Rapids Brewing Company
La Vitesse D'Oro
Dark copper color. Aromas of butter toasted corn bread, roasted nuts and root vegetables with a supple, fruity sweet medium-full body and a warming honeyed radish, arugula, pepper, hominy, and light molasses finish. A big, brawny big for savoring in a snifter.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206410
Stevens Point Brewery
Point Three Kings Ale
Golden color. Layered aromas of toasted buttered baguette and roasted corn with a supple, frothy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a crisp, starfruit and radish like finish. Interesting, drinks a little bit like a cuvee of cream ale and a lager.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
205796
Thirsty Dog Brewing Co.
Cerberus Belgian Style Trippel Ale
Brilliant amber color. Slight soapy aromas suggest spicy banana bread, brown sugar, mint and pepper with a tangy, fruity-yet-dry medium-full body and a chewy, boozy wintergreen-apple jelly on biscuit finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206328
Unibroue
Raftman
Light copper color. Aromas of chestnut honey, wintergreen, and herb bread with a supple, dryish medium body and a roasted apple, chestnut, and radish, and tobacco accented finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206543
Rogness Brewing Company
Beardy Guard
Deep copper color. Aromas of herbal polenta, buttery nut brittle, and egg sandwich with a dryish medium body and a somewhat sour roasted root vegetable and pepper and grilled citrus finish. Pair with smoky bbq.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206593
Lancaster Brewing Company
Kolsch
Golden amber color. Aromas of day old bread and overripe fruit with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a banana taffy and peppered greens finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206489
Rahr & Sons Brewing Co.
La Grange Farmhouse Ale
Golden amber color. Aromas of peach-mango yogurt, herb sourdough bread, and peppered cauliflower with a supple, fruity sweet and sour medium-to-full body and a candied tropical fruit salad, peppercorn, and radish finish. A bit too sweet and sour, especially for the style. Serve with funky blue and goat cheeses.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206418
Sprecher Brewing Co.
Mai Bock
Deep amber color. Aromas of Denver omelet, pepper muffin, and dried mangos with a crisp, dryish medium-to-full body and a frothy, very astringent and prickly, peppered nut, radish and mineral accented finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206531
Dad & Dude’s Breweria
Marilyn Belgian Blonde
Clear golden color with frog eye bubbles. Angular aroma of egg yolks, chicken fat, and sourdough bread with an almost flat dryish light-to-medium body and a terse buttered white toast, banana taffy, and jicama finish. Drinkable, but really under delivers on the style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206439
Epic Brewing Company
Brainless on Peaches
Bright golden amber color. Aromas of Brussels sprouts, honey, peach nectar, and clementine with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a wheat toast, melon, spinach, and peppery spice finish. Serve with food.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206483
Hudsonville Pike 51 Brewing Co.
Belgian Amber
Copper bronze color. Aromas of nutshells, pepper, dried pear, and dandelions with supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a slightly phenolic molten rubber, bitter greens, and grilled turnip finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
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