Sunday, January 24, 2010

Belgian Beer Review 5: Gueuze Girardin 1882

I didn't want to get more than a month into my Belgian exploration before I picked up something truly funky. When I saw this at Whole Foods a couple of weeks ago, I knew instantly that this beer would fit the bill, from the old style label to the dregs of yeast visibly clinging to the cork. After trying the Foret that I bought on the same trip, I was concerned that this green bottle beer would also be skunked. Luckily, my fears were allayed.

Brewery: Brouwerij Girardin
Brewery Location: Belgium
Beer: Gueuze Girardin 1882 (black label)
BJCP Style:
17E. Gueuze
Serving: Bottle
Appearance: bright copper in color, like a penny was recently soaked in ketchup; cloudy

Smell: funky, straw and barnyard with some dried apple; no hops, no malt and sour even in the nose

Taste: Sour, but not overtly. Overall, refreshing with some sweetness and tanginess upfront--Brett and sour balance nicely, with a tart sweetness like eating a granny smith apple; clean finish, with some tiny hints of cardboard way deep in the swallow.

Mouthfeel: thin, but not weak, but instead delicate, with carbonation like a club soda

Drinkability: This beer was incredible--the most interesting Belgian that I've tried this year. I expected it to be more challenging and was surprised at how refreshing and approachable it was. Not for everyone (my wife cringed at the aroma and refused to go anywhere near the glass), but for drinkers interested in exploring sour ales, this one would be at the top of my recommendation list.

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1 comment:

Jim at MoIppai said...

Good review. I recently discovered the Gueuze style of beers through Lindemans Gueuze. A very unusual and fascinating taste.