Saturday, September 18, 2010

Geuze v. Geuze

I did a geuze comparison last night because I picked up a Lindemans Geuze Cuvee Rene and a Boon Oude Geuze.  It was pretty interesting to see the differences the two had in representing the style.

I'll start with a quick geuze description from Beer Advocate to give you an idea of what to expect from the style.
A traditional Belgian blend of young and old Lambics, which are then bottled after blending, then aged for 2-3 years to produce a dryer, fruitier and more intense style of Lambic. There is no hop character, some are filtered and force carbonated if not pasteurized as well. Some say that this is the more harsh lambic as the sourness is pretty intense.
When they say sour, by the way, they aren't kidding. Both bottles of geuze were ridiculously citrusy and tart.  Just crazy.

I started with the bottle of Lindemans Geuze Cuvee Rene.  Apparently this isn't their normal geuze, but oh well.
It poured a nice orange with almost an inch of head.  Lots of carbonation in the glass, lots of bubbles.  Cool looking beer really.  The smell was very citrusy and sort of musty.  The mustiness really grew as I worked my way through the beer.  It sounds odd to describe a beer as musty but well that's how it was.  The first taste was way sour, just off the charts.  Since I was expecting it, the taste to me was really interesting and pretty delicious.  It's not something I'd drink 10 glasses of or even probably 2 glasses, but one glass in a night would be a nice change.  My wife didn't think as much of it as me.  Her first response was, "Blech, this tastes like lemons and not in a good way."  She followed that up with, "Are you seriously going to drink that?"  Drink it I did and I really enjoyed it for its uniqueness.

Next up was the Boon Oude Geuze.  (Note this Boon is a Belgian Brewer, not the fortified wine people.)
The Boon Geuze poured with about the same amount of head but less bubbles and a slightly lighter color.  The smell was slightly less citrusy but pretty similar.  The mustiness didn't appear as strongly as the Lindeman's but that may be an age thing.  It did still exist though so don't think getting this beer will let you avoid the feeling that you are drinking a beer made in a barn.  The first taste was a bit more mild than the Cuvee Rene but the tartness was still the major focal point of the flavors.  The finish to the Boon was actually a little bitter which surprised me.  I'm not sure what was causing it but it was a bit weird.  Jo only took a little sip of this one but her response was the same as to the first.  Definitely not a style for her.

Of the two, I'd get the Lindemans Cuvee Rene before the Boon, but since they were both pretty inexpensive I'd pick up either if I felt like having a geuze again.  I'm sure some of the more expensive ones are a little more balanced but they are still going to be super tart in the end.  It was a fun night of trying really different stuff.

No comments:

Post a Comment