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Orval
April 5, 2013, 1:52 pm
Filed under: alcohol | Tags: , , ,

5 April 2013

Huge blossoming lively foamy head, which seems to be organically growing all the time. Deep reddish honey colour. Salty and dry on first try, with strong carbonation. Before becoming bitter. As it warms up, it becomes sweeter and more watery, with a hint of caramel. Hops is most pronounced earlier on, but the bitterness is always in the background. Honey at the second pour and finish as the carbonation fizzes out (but still lingers). A lingering aromatic bouquet in the breath. Opened after a year in a bottle. The guy at the store (Thirsty) said that it is a one-of-a-kind Trappiste beer. He is right.

25 October 2013

Pour: Huge, organic, foamy, bubbly, 3-finger off-white yellowish head in my goblet. yellowish light brown (think old leather), thick and hazey.

Nose: Caramel, candy, funk. Very organic and yeasty, even pungent mould and barnyard smells.

Palate: Carbonation hits the tongue but fizzles quickly. Solid bread and candy, toasted malt. Ends dry with a slight hop taste, which gives the beer variety and added complexity and stages in taste without being too taxing on the palate. Even sour at times, plums and raisins and preserved fruits, with hints of red wine tannins.

A truly world class beer and one of my all-time favourites. This is my second time tasting this beer and my view that this is a truly unique beer with its own unorthodox taste is reinforced (not just amongst the Belgium abbey bears). This is a beer that teases, infuriates, confuses, and titillate, all at the same time, and has a different taste and creates a different experience each time I taste it with a different bottle. Since the experience of the beer changes somewhat with each batch, one can expect an interesting experience each time one pops a bottle. I wonder whether I am drinking the same beer when I read the reviews on Orval in Beeradvocate and Ratebeer.com. I like beers with complexity and character, and this has miles of it.

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