Friday, October 8, 2010
Brouwerij De Smedt / Brouwerij Affligem
Belgian Pale Ale (Blond)
Affligem Blonde, the classic clear blonde abbey ale, with a gentle roundness and 6.8% alcohol. Low on bitterness, it is eminently drinkable.
In the interest of full disclosure I have to tell you that this is one of my favorite Belgian Blondes. Leffe is my favorite “go to” everyday blonde but Affligem is just behind it. I have added this to the bier list for my Second Annual Craft Beer Event and then realized that I have never given this a full review. So here we go.
The bier pours a clear golden yellow with orange hues and a bright white head.
The nose is delightful with light pilsner like malts, and sweet aromas of citrus, light fruit esters and those classic Belgian yeasty notes. The nose is very inviting; I can’t wait to dive into it.
Oh my, this is clean, crisp, highly effervescent and very refreshing. It’s no wonder that this is one of my favorite Belgian Blondes. I’m glad I bought a 6 pack because I’m already thinking about my second bottle and I’m only on my second sip of this one.
It starts out with a light malt sweetness up front on the tip of the tongue. Then in mid-sip there is the most pleasant effervescence and cleansing feeling over the tongue. The back-end is extremely easy drinking. There is still a good amount of carbonation released during the swallow. It tickles the whole way down kind of like how a soda pop would. The finish is fairly dry but there is no bitterness whatsoever. There is also a nice bite to the finish of this bier but it’s not a hop bitterness it’s a spicy note. There is not much of a lingering aftertaste but there are notes of yeast and citrus.
This was so refreshing it’s gone I’ll have to go for the second bottle to continue.
Ahh that’s better.
Now that I’m taking my time with this second one I’m realizing how flavorful this bier really is. The finish and aftertaste is much more robust than it was earlier. Well, I’m not sure robust is the right word this is a light Belgian Blonde. But the finish is developing more character as the bier warms up. There are also maltier flavors and stronger spice notes now.
Sorry I’m to lazy tonight to get out the thermometer but we are approaching room temperature and this is still a very good Blonde.
I’m going for a B on this Blonde. This is a great everyday Blonde; clean, crisp and very refreshing with just the right amount of citrus and spice. There may be better Belgian Pale Ales/Blondes out there but probably not as refreshing as this one.