This fest is already finished. It was their 30th.time, which really is a very long time.
I don't know if there is any beer fest with such a long record?
We went on Saturday afternoon, and the day after have done some different things on the way back home to Bruges (more later).
The weather was not in favor.... rain...rain... An outside sit was not an option this time. But, a big tent was installed on the outside patio. So, no problems with space at all.
The Trappist beers menu was impressive. That's an offering of nearly all the Trappist beers worldwide, except for the La Trappe Oak Aged versions, and maybe a couple of other ones.
But frankly, what a truely amazing beer menu! Westvleteren 12 at €8.00, but that'll be for another time, as I only have 1 liver.
A good starter, for comparison.
Westmalle triple being as great as ever.
The new Rochefort triple was also very tasty, but oh so different! Actually, there is no comparison possible, as both are completely different beers.
The Rochefort triple had a very pronounced "wort" flavor. It was like drinking liquid bread.
Also, that use of orange peel is noticed. Quite subtle, but clearly present, makes the beer giving that uplift refreshing touch.
Absolute top quality!
Time for something very special now !
An American Trappist beer that has been oak aged! Wow!
Hard to find in the USA, but readily available here in Belgium at the Trappist beer fests in Niel.
Hence, as said, this undoubtedly is the best Trappist beer (and other Trappist things) fest in the world.
An Imperial Stout with an ABV of 11.3 vo%.
That's, together with Rochefort 10 (also 11.3 vol%) the strongest Trappist beers.
Actually a remarkable coincidence that 11.3 vol%
Folks, this is some heavy stuff here !
Think of tobacco, cedar wood, and ...... old leather.
This is a beer to sip with time. Alot of concentations here, and it goes down quite heavy on the stomach.
Actually, having had another one would be too much to handle. BUT !!! D E L I C I O U S it sure was.
For the oak barrel aged lovers, a true MUST !
That Chimay cheese (washed with Chimay red) was a perfect companion. What a delicious cheese this was, and actually had a beer flavor, although quite subtle.
As usual, a lot of time has been invested in beautifully decorating the chapel with Trappist items. For example this beautiful gothic window.
The last beer, before heading for dinner.
That really needed to be an excellent Trappist beer.
Trappist Achel Extra at 9.5 vol% can do that trick with ease.
This bottle still carries the ATP logo, but that'll change, as they are not an "Authentic Trappist Product" anymore, due to abscence monks at Achel.
It is still allowed to name it Trappist Achel though.
No worries, it is still that same beer! In other words: a delicacy !!
Call this beer an upscale from their 8 vol% Achel dark. It has much more flavors and more creaminess too. One of my favorit Trappist beers.
We had the mixed Trappist cheese platter with bread to pair things.
.... and found to be the cheese from Westmalle being the best. It has aged and had a tasty Gruyère flavor.
What more can I say than that this beer fest is a true DELIGHT ! If I don't have to work on Saturdays, we sure will go there. That's a fixed value.
From Bruges, it still is a far-away drive, so one really needs to make it a weekend.
This time, we opted not to visit on Sunday, and instead head towards a Trappist pub on the way back home. (more later)
This is how our dinner looked alike last Saturday evening.
A portion of "frieten klein" (small portion of frites)
A brochette Ardennaise, frikandel speciaal, and a "berenhap" on the right side there.
Tartare sauce and nuclear spicy chili mayonnaise, called Samurai sauce. Actually, this is plain mayonnaise with Sambal Oelek.
It's filling and sobering ! The friterie is very close to the fest.
I ordered a Duvel. It was already very late, and somehow they didn't have any glasses to pour the beer in.
So, they gave us a plastic cup.
How difficult that was to pour that beer into that cup! foam....foam...ALOT !!! But it was that perfect nightcap