The Germans may be the best in brewing pure lagers and small British breweries cornered the market of’ draught ales, but only the Belgians can claim to make beers like no other, in a diversity of styles that outstrips the rest of the world. This is the outtake of the 15th edition of the Belgium beer Weekend in Brussels.
A selection of 50 Belgian breweries presented almost 370 different kinds of beers, from regular Lagers to crafted Lambiks, over dark Stouts to the well-known Trappists.
Thousands of beer loving people from all over the world (especially Americans and Far East-Asians are crazy about Belgian beers) gave their selves the chance to experience real specialty beers, brewed with craftsmanship, dedication, respect for qualitative ingredients and heritage.
I would like to take you through two of those real gems in the world of premium heritage beers.
The one that stole my heart is Affligem Patersvat. This seasonal double fermented beer is brewed at the heart of Belgium near the Abbey of Affligem when the fresh hops are harvested at the end of the summer. These fresh aroma-hops are used to brew this extraordinary well balanced hop-bitter beer.
Affligem Patersvat (6.8°Alc.) is bright blond, has a firm creamy head and excellent carbonation. Its refreshing aroma contains the fresh hops and light touches of citrus, which we also find back in the taste next to a grassy bitterness. The special Affligem yeast that is used for this beer gives the typical and unique Affligem ‘yeast-bite’ at the end.
The second beer that deserves to be mentioned is Also a blond top fermentation beer with refermentation in the bottle; Avec Les Bons Vœux. Since 1970, the brewery of Dupont in Tourpes (South-West Belgium) has been brewing a special beer to give as a new year present to their best clients. (“Avec les Bons Vœux de la brasserie Dupont » means « With the best wishes of the brewery Dupont”).
This Bons Vœux (9.5°Alc.) is coppery blond, has very fine fruity hop aromas and tastes bitter but mild. The selection of yeasts, in combination with a long riping process, on a “dry hopping” base, create a complex aroma and taste you’ll not easily forget.
Enjoy your Monday-beer,