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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Belgium beers - help me!
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Old 04-27-2010, 03:40 AM   #1
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Default Belgium beers - help me!

I have not had a Belgium beer I liked - too fruity or too carbonated or too sweet... So far anyway. Tomorrow I'm going here <http://www.granvillemoores.com/index.html> for dinner so I figure I'd try to find a Belgium style I like. I wonder if there is one?!

I like dry, hoppy and, since I originate from the UK , not too carbonated. What should I have? I'm actually much more open than I sound, I'm just not sure what the fuss is all about Belgium beers...yet...!

TIA!

Steve da sleeve

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Old 04-27-2010, 05:15 AM   #2
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La Chouffe Houblon Chouffe Dobbelen IPA Tripel.

You can read about it here: http://beeradvocate.com/articles/663.

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Old 04-27-2010, 05:44 AM   #3
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Might just no be your cup of tea. High carbonation and fruity phenolics are staples in many examples of the Belgian styles.

You might try a Saison. They are generally higly carbonated, but dry. Some to the extent they resemble slighly funky champagnes. Boulevard with Brett is a very tasty example, and the Brett assures not much in the way of fruitiness.

Also some of the Dubbels have much milder phenolics than their lighter colored cousins like Belgian Pales, Tripels, or goldens. The Dubbel is a dark colored beer, but not most of the fruity esters in the lighter styles.

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Old 04-27-2010, 05:58 AM   #4
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Maybe just a matter of training your palate. I mean, if you're accustomed to dry and hoppy beers, then it might be hard to go to sweet beers. Personally, I'm a big fan of Belgium beers, because it's them that make me love beers, I mean, how not to love beers with an Orval, a Chimay, or better yet, a Rochefort 10? Did you try trappist beers?

However I still have some trouble with England's "hoppy" beers (I have in mind Fuller's London Pride and Fuller's ESB). I might need some others to accustome myself.

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Old 04-27-2010, 02:27 PM   #5
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About a month ago, I was in the exact same boat as you. Like a kid to cauliflour, I couldn't touch a Belgain beer. I've tried a few since I started brewing to see if my tastes had changed and I would automatically start enjoying them. Just didn't happen.

In the beginning of April, a friend bought me a Belgian sampler pack that had multiple types of Belgian beers. It had an Amber, a Blonde, a dubbel, a tripel, and some others that I haven't tried. So far, I've actually really enjoyed the Amber and the Blonde. They didn't have that super-high carb level that was urking me in the other Belgians I had tried. It also didn't have the high level of spiciness that the others had either. So the door was open. I could start exploring Belgian Blondes and Ambers.

Fast forward to this weekend. I was in upstate New York, and we went to Brewery Ommegang. I took their tour, which was fantastic. I learned in the tour that they use a lot of spices in their brew, things like anise, corriander, orange peel, etc. For me, simply gaining the understanding that they're not just using grains, hops, water and yeast, was enough to help me appreciate the Belgian beers a little more.

After the tour, they took us into a very nicely done sampling room, where we were able to sample all of their beers. We had their Witte (Belgian White/Witbier), Ommegang(Abbey Ale), Hennepin (Saison), Rare Vos (Amber), Three Philosophers (blended ale/kriek) and Ommegeddon (dry hopped Belgian ale w/ Brett yeast). Aside from the Witte, which had a little too much carbonation for my tastes, I enjoyed every one of them.

If you wanted to venture into Belgians, and have an opportunity to try the Rare Vos, do it. It was my favorite from their offerings. The Ommegang Abbey and the Hennepin were close seconds.

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Old 04-27-2010, 02:39 PM   #6
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It's all about which Belgium beers you're tasting, too. The OP didn't mention any beers he tasted. I mean, not all Belgium beers are good.

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Old 04-27-2010, 02:51 PM   #7
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Common mistake, but one that bothers me: it's Belgian beers, not 'Belgium' beers.

Also, I agree that it would help to know what you have tried. If you've tried Tripel's from three different breweries, it's unlikely (though not impossible) that you'll like one from a fourth. So if you list some Belgian styles you've tried but haven't liked and then some non-Belgian styles that you do like, it would be easier to make useful suggestions.

My suggestion from the information I have is to try a style you've never tried before.

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Old 04-27-2010, 03:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slowbie View Post
Common mistake, but one that bothers me: it's Belgian beers, not 'Belgium' beers.
Thanks, I was getting confused. I always used "Belgian beers", but since the OP is originating from the UK, well, I thought I was wrong (since english isn't my first language).
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Old 04-27-2010, 03:44 PM   #9
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Try Orval or Rochefort 6.

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Old 04-27-2010, 07:58 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=slowbie;2029065]Common mistake, but one that bothers me: it's Belgian beers, not 'Belgium' beers.QUOTE]

Thanks! My wife is Belgian, and living in an American community in Belgium, I often here about "Belgium beers", my wife being "Belgium", etc. It really drives me crazy! Just thought I'd vent.

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