Poking around in the back of the fridge turned up this bottle of Gruut Bruin which I'm sure has been there longer than a year at this stage. At least I don't have to worry about the hop character fading as the gimmick here is that none are used, with just "herbs" taking their place on the ingredients list. I've had a few of the others in the range, finding them quite decent.
The Bruin is on the pale side for the style: more of a red colour, and is almost totally flat. But neither of those are the most striking thing about it. It's already quite a sweet style and the lack of hops isn't going to do anything to bitter things up, but this is like getting hit in the face with a candy shop. Toffee in abundance, as well as overtones of Cadbury's Crème Egg interior. The finish is a very Belgian alcohol burn, unsurprising as it's 8% ABV.
It's not a million miles from other strong sweet brown Belgians, and Kwak in particular. But the absence of hops really helps raise the sugar factor, and not in a good way.
Westmalle Dubbel - *Origin: Belgium | Date: 2008 | ABV: 7% | On The Beer Nut: October 2007* It's a longtime favourite today. Westmalle Dubbel goes back to the very beginnings...
2 weeks ago