They Brew it, I sell it, You Drink it... and so do I..

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Belgium vs Germany - Bring it on!!!

Tonight is a night before a day off, so I thought it'd be nice to compare, if I could, two very strong and two very respectable beers, which if you've never tried before I seriously suggest you do!

The first of the night is still relatively new to us, but was an instant classic with me the first time I tried it over two years ago. An 11.5% monster. A deep dark copper devilish looking brew. One perfect for aging, and drinking right now with your friends. (unless your greedy like I am with this beer) There's a bit of lumpy sediment to the brew, but it quickly sinks and besides, a bit of Belgian yeast will always keep you regular ;)

Start thinking Belgian Barley Wine - because that's pretty much what this is. Some could call it a Quadruple, but I'd rather not get into that beer style argument again. It's intensely warming, like a fine cognac. Big rich flavours. Think caramel, raisins, dried apricots and a touch of fiery toffee. It's quite sweet to start, but it has the classic peppery dryness in the finish. A great beer, one that deserves your respect, for more reasons than one!

The second contender for the strong beer title of 'my' night comes from the ever classic Schneider Brewery: it's Aventinus Eisbock! Apparently this beer was made by mistake when some barrels of regular Aventinus partially froze during transportation within Bavaria. Being baffled by the awesome liquid brew-master at Schneider, Hans Peter Drexler, decided to produce the beer in a more 'controlled manner' :)

This 12% dark wheaty monster needs respect too. They say you shouldn't bother aging wheat beers, but I'd age this! Darker than the Samaranth, it comes across the nose with the ripest of banana aromas. Not as much carbonation as you normally get from wheat beers. You get an initial 'massive icy sweetness' round the silky  start but rocky finish mouth-feel to this beer. WoW, just plain WoW!!! This is a fantastic beer! Candied fruits, it's quite a sticky beer. There's spice in there too, I'm thinking drying cloves. Quite a bit of red berry fruit going on in there to massively push up the sweetness - so much so it almost becomes tartness.

Two HUGE beers then. But after all that I kind of prefer the Samaranth. At the end of the day it all comes down to personal taste, and while the Eisbock was the bigger beer I preferred the Belgian.

Roll on a sore head....

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