Food, Beer, and Travel

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Posts Tagged ‘Westmalle’

Westmalle Dubbel

Posted by jwpiper on January 10, 2009

I’ve enjoyed plenty Wesmalle Dubbels in and around Belgium. It’s a wonderful complement to many meals and its pervasive availability make it a good stand-by. I’ve been told that asking for a Trappist bier without further specification will produce a Westmalle Dubbel.

The versatility of this beer demands having some on hand, and if it’s not too rich for your blood, it makes an excellent cooking beer – for example in this recipe for Carbonnades Flamandes.

Matt C. and I split a 33cl bottle between two Westmalle glasses at cellar temperature. It opens with a forceful hiss – indicating its desire to get out of the bottle and into my glass. The bubbles which spill out if not poured within moments of opening convince me of the need to oblige.

Appearance
4
Tootsie roll brown with some amber notes and a substantial off-white head which turns to lace.
Smell
4.5
The smell is apples, apples, apples: green, fresh, and sour. Also, a sweet biscuity yeast is present. Delicious.
Taste
4
First is that green apple, though less sour than on the nose. Then there are sweet malts, and it’s complex with an almost nuttiness and yeasty goodness. Very interesting and impeccably balanced. Just a touch of bitterness carries more green apples through the finish. The final finish is bready yeast.
Mouthfeel
4
Medium-bodied, dryish, airy, and effervescent. A very nice clean feel.
Drinkability
4.5
It is the easiest Trappist to drink. Well, maybe the Westvleteren Blonde, but that’s tough to compare given the lack of availability.
Overall
4.15
An incredible, perfectly balanced, versatile beer. I love this offering from Westmalle.
Price
$4.65/330ml. That’s the US price. I’ve been able to find it at $3.55CAD in Ontario. At the US price, it’s tough to justify to be honest. But at the Canadian price, it’s tough not to.

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