Category Archives: 5 – Excellent (must buy)

Cantillon Saint Lamvinus

Brewery: Brasserie Cantillon
Country: Belgium
ABV: 5%
Style: Belgian Lambic (Fruit)
Other Notes: Merlot grapes

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Symbol of the union of two cultures, the Saint-Lamvinus is the result of a harmonious blending of merlot grapes and lambics that have macerate for long months in oak casks. Natural second fermentation in bottle. Beer with a taste evolution. Store and serve at cellar temperature 12-15°C/55-60°F. To enjoy completely the fruity taste of the Saint-Lamvinus, drink it better in the year after the purchase. To be drunk preferably within the 10 years after the bottling date.

My rating: 5
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.65
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.5

Intro: A 750ml bottle, bottled on 14th November 2016. Poured into a wine glass.
Appearance: It was a very nice lightly cloudy ruby red colour with a two finger pinkish head that dissipated fairly quickly to a settled thin layer with only sparse lacing.
Aroma: Lots of tart red berries, raspberry and strawberry plus grapes and lemon. Nice barrel and oak character with a hint of red wine vinegar and only light funk and barnyard-iness.
Taste: Moderate sourness, cherry, raspberry, strawberry, grape juice and oak with hints of grapefruit and funk.
Mouthfeel: Dry, light to medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation.
Overall: With less than a year since bottling, there was lots of really nice fruit flavours bursting out while the funk was quite light. Although this particular bottle was quite young, it also taste great with age. Can’t wait to try more of this wonderful goodness.

Cloudwater NW DIPA Citra

Brewery: Cloudwater Brew Co.
Country: England
ABV: 9%
Style: American Double IPA
Other Notes: Special Edition (drink fresh). Malts – Golden Promise, Oats, Dextrose Monohydrate. Yeast – JW Lees. Hops – Citra, Simcoe, Huell Melon, Mosaic and Pilgrim Alpha CO2 Extract

Brewer Description: (from can) Introducing our new DIPA style which showcases yeast from one of Manchester’s oldest family brewers and fresh 2016 harvest hops. Citra takes the lead backed up by Simcoe, with JW Lees 4792nd generation yeast.

My rating: 5
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.62
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.5

Intro: A 440ml can, canned on 27th April 2017 and with a best before date of end of June 2017. Poured into a Lost Abbey teku glass.
Appearance: A cloudy, mango juice dark orange colour with a thin white head and sparse lacing.
Aroma: Tropical mango and papaya followed by citrusy orange and orange rind with a hint of grapefruit and pineapple.
Taste: Juicy mango, pineapple and orange with light bitterness, dankness and a lingering tingly spice on the finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.
Overall: A very nice DIPA from Cloudwater that is both juicy and intense.

Rodenbach Caractère Rouge

Brewery: Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Country: Belgium
ABV: 7%
Style: Flanders Red Ale
Other Notes: Aged on oak casks

Brewer Description: (from tag) The exclusive Rodenbach Caractère Rouge, with an alcohol content of 7%, is the result of a 6-month maceration with fresh fruit (sour cherries, raspberries and cranberries) of a beer which matured in oak casks for 2 years. After its maceration, the beer is re-fermented in the bottle. Rodenbach Caractère Rouge is vinous with a ver complex, fruity nose of raspberry and cherry combined with notes of wood and caramel. The undertone consists of an aroma of violets, leather and a hint of tobacco. Flavourwise this fruit beer has a rather sour taste, but of an exceptionally pure nature. Its light, residual sugars balance out the triangle of sour, sweet and dry flavours. This dryness mainly stems from the cranberries, which lend the beer an exceptionally long and pure aftertaste.

My rating: 5
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.77
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.6

Intro: A 750ml corked and caged bottle with a best before date of 19th May 2017. Poured into a Cantillon ballon glass.
Appearance: A dark ruby red colour with a half finger off white head that dissipated quickly and left some sparse lacing.
Aroma: Berry fruit forward, lightly sweet with raspberry, cherry and cranberry. Finish is lightly tart with earthy oakiness.
Taste: Great balance of tart, lightly sour and lightly sweet, with raspberry, cherry and cranberry followed by some nice light oak woodiness.
Mouthfeel: Dry-ish, medium bodied with moderate carbonation.
Overall: This is just really good. Nicely balanced, smooth and very fruity. I could drink this all day. Even though this particular bottle was nearing its best before date, it felt as if it would still be good to drink over the next few years.

Orval

Brewery: Brasserie D’Orval S.A.
Country: Belgium
ABV: 6.2%
Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Brewer Description: (from website) The distinctive fruity and bitter taste of Orval beer means it has become a genuine reference in the exclusive world of authentic Trappist beers. Orval beer is a high fermentation beer. The ageing process adds a fruity note, which strikes a subtle balance between the beer’s full-bodied yet complex flavour and bitterness. The beer was first brewed in 1931 and owes its unparalleled taste to the quality of the water, the hops and the yeast used. The brewery has selected very aromatic and unique hop varieties, which hark back to the first brewmaster of Orval, who hailed from Bavaria. The beer’s aromas are very pronounced while maintaining the right level of bitterness thanks to the English method of dry hopping. The various stages of fermentation – combined fermentation with the original yeast and with wild yeast, followed by fermentation in the bottle – mean the beer must age for some time and requires numerous quality controls.

My rating: 5
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.56
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.3

Intro: A 330ml bottle, bottled on 3rd February 2016, best before 3rd February 2021, and poured into a Chimay goblet.
Appearance: A clear copper colour with an almost two finger white head that had great retention and left nice sticky lacing.
Aroma: Very fruity berries, grape, apple and pear with hints of coriander and brett.
Taste: Nice gentle fruitiness, berries, grape, bubblegum and plum with a light tartness, light peppery spice, brett, funk and a hint of banana.
Mouthfeel: Dry-ish, medium bodied with moderate carbonation.
Overall: Very nice and very well balanced beer, and a must buy beer in my book.

Omnipollo x Buxton Yellow Belly

Brewery: Omnipollo x Buxton Brewery
Country: Sweden
ABV: 11%
Style: American Imperial Stout
Other Notes: Imperial Stout brewed with aromas of peanut and biscuit. Brewed by Omnipollo & Buxton Brewery at Buxton Brewery

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Yellow Belly – a person who is without courage, fortitude , or nerve; a coward. To us, one of the most cowardly deeds is to act anonymously, hiding behind a group. A signifying trait of institutionalised racism. This beer is brewed to celebrate all things new, open minded and progressive. A peanut butter biscuit stout with no biscuits, butter or nuts. Taste, enjoy and don’t be prejudice. Henok Fentie, Karl Grandin, Denis Johnstone, Jake Oulsnam, Geoff Quinn & Colin Stronge.

My rating: 5
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.79
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.7

Intro: A 330ml bottle with a best before date of 11th August 2021. Poured into a snifter glass.
Appearance: Extremely dark brown to black in colour with a very thin brown head that disappears quickly while leaving very sparse lacing.
Aroma: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, peanuts, wafer biscuit, caramel and toffee.
Taste: Peanut butter, milk chocolate and biscuit sweetness followed by some nice lightly bitter coffee and dark chocolate with hints of peanut here and there.
Mouthfeel: Full bodied, low carbonation with slight alcohol warming.
Overall: Really good wonderful aromas and taste. Even at 11% ABV, it was very easy to drink and definitely a must buy beer for me.