27 February 2012

Responsible retailing

Pierre of Delice & Caprice in Brussels knew nothing about Giesbaargs Muurken, nor had he even tasted it yet as it was brand new on his shelves. And like any responsible shopkeep he therefore could not bring himself to ask for money in exchange for it. I mean, what if it wasn't any good? That would be embarrassing. So for the fourth blog post in a row I'm drinking a freebie. This doesn't happen very often.

Some research tells me the beer was launched last summer and is contract brewed at Proef. It's 7% ABV and squarely in the Belgian blonde ale category, pouring a pale gold with an enthusiastic fizz which settles to a rocky white head. The aroma is intense and almost witbier-like with its citrus and coriander piquancy, promising sweet bubblegum underneath. So I was surprised to find on tasting it's actually shockingly bitter: I get a kind of raw greenness that shades towards washing-up liquid and lingers in the back of my throat. It's a beer I enjoyed smelling far more than drinking: even adding the lees to the glass did nothing to soften the harshness.

With a bit more late-hopping we could have zingy marvel on our hands. As-is, I'm quite glad not to be out of pocket.


  1. Get yourself some lime cordial. Does wonders with a ropey grog that's difficult to get down.

  2. With a name like Muurken I'm surprised it isn't flying off the shelves...