Thursday, 6 September 2018

Top Ten: “Belgian beers every touring band should get wasted on while touring Belgium” – A Bearded Punk Records Guide

Would you go and play in Italy and not drink any Italian wines? Would you go on tour to Japan and eat at McDonalds? I’ll kindly answer that question for you… No, you wouldn’t. Or at least, you shouldn’t!

Hi, my name is Bjorn and I’m the owner of record label Bearded Punk Records. For those of you who’ve never heard of us before, we’re stationed in Belgium. So what else would I talk about other than… no, not waffles… nope, not chocolate… not our fries, but the thing us Belgians are most proud of: our vast array of mouthwatering BEERS.

Since we started the label in 2015, we’ve hosted quite a large number of shows for touring international bands and I have let them crash at my humble abode. All of those people were awesome house guests, but there’s only one thing that broke my heart time and time again… And that’s when they asked for Heineken, Beck’s or any other crappy non-Belgian beer.

That’s why I’ve decided to write down my personal top 10 “Belgian beers every touring band should get wasted on while touring Belgium”. Keep in mind that I’m not responsible for any future hangovers and/or motorway puke stops. Drink responsibly, folks! ’Cause those Belgian beers will knock you over before you know it. And please, don’t ever drinks any of these beers from the bottle! They all have their very own custom glasses.

Alright, here goes!

1. Duvel
Duvel is a natural blonde beer with a subtle bitterness, a refined flavour, a distinctive hop character and it’s my all-time favourite. It’s famous for its typical way of being served as it is slowly poured into a tulip glass, which forms a small “tornado” under the white foam. Do not drink that foam, though!

Alcohol percentage: 8,5%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 3–4

2. Bush
The Bush Ambrée is flushed with a bitter-sweet taste, and a pleasing consistency, courtesy, in part, of its balanced caramel malts. Those malts also introduce a strong streak of roasted nuts, adding to this beer's stand-out flavour. The only Bush that doesn’t disappoint!

Alcohol percentage: 12%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 2

3. Klokke Roeland
This a clear dark amber brew with fine-grained white foam in the Delirium Tremens snifter. It has a serious candy flavour, balanced by the scratchy yeast and dry finish. It has hints of lemon drops and dried pears. Bands that will stay over in the future should definitely ask me for this beer, but there’s no guarantee I’ll have it in the fridge at all times, because it’s rather exclusive.

Alcohol percentage: 11,5%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 2

4. Kasteelbier Rouge
The aroma and colour of this one screams cherry beer. The flavour of the sweet cherries dominates the malt of the dark beer, though it is in the background lending hints of chocolate, and a little soft hop bitterness. But watch out, ’cause these are some mean-ass cherries!

Alcohol percentage: 11,5%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 2

5. Westmalle Tripel
Westmalle Tripel is a complex ale with a fruity aroma and a nice nuanced hop scent. It is soft and creamy in the mouth, with a bitter touch carried by the fruity aroma. An exceptional ale, with a great deal of finesse and elegance, and with a splendid long after taste.

Alcohol percentage: 9,5%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 3–4

6. Chimay Bleue (Blue)
This is a beer whose fragrance of fresh yeast with a light, flowery rosy touch is especially pleasant. Its flavour, noticed when tasting it, only accentuates the pleasant sensations perceived in the aroma, while revealing a light but pleasant touch of roasted malt.

Alcohol percentage: 9%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 4

7. Rochefort 10
Dark colour, full and very impressive taste. Strong plum, raisin, and blackcurrant palate.

Alcohol percentage: 11,3%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 2–3

8. Sint Bernardus Abt 12
Bernardus Abt is a dark beer with a full, ivory-coloured head. It has a fruity aroma, full of complex flavours and excels because of its long bittersweet finish with a hoppy bite. The taste of this beer resembles that of Westvleteren, which was awarded the title of best beer in the world a number of times!

Alcohol percentage: 10%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 3–4

9. Tripel Karmeliet
This beer has not only the lightness and freshness of wheat, but also the creaminess of oats together with a spicy lemony almost quinine dryness. Tripel Karmeliet is served in a beautiful glass, which makes it a really nice drinking experience!

Alcohol percentage: 8,4%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 3–5

10. La chouffe N’ice
La Chouffe’s winter edition is a strong, brown beer that will warm you in the depths of winter. Spicy (thyme and curaçao) and tinged with hops, this is a very balanced beer. In my opinion it beats the flavour of its sister beers La Chouffe Classic and Mc Chouffe.

Alcohol percentage: 10%
Estimated amount until shitfaced: 3–4

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