We’ve had an incredible selection of Belgian beer gracing our taps, encompassing the wide variety brewed in the country.
Our mission at Taste This Beer London is to try to introduce people to beers and styles they’ve never tried before, whether they are Belgian beer novices or connoisseurs.
With approximately 180 breweries in the country, ranging from international giants to microbreweries, producing something like 1,500 beers between them, there’s a lot to try.
Here’s our ever-growing list:
Belgian Strong Dark Ale
Typically spicy and alcoholic, with lots of complexity within a delicate palate. Hop and malt character can vary, most are fruity and may have mild dark malt flavors.
The alcohol character can be deceivingly hidden or can be very bold and in your face.
Most will be light on the hops.
Traditionally a Trappist Ale, dubbels (doubles) are a fairly strong brown ale with understated bitterness, fairly heavy body, and a pronounced fruitiness and cereal character.
A rich malty beer with mild hop bitterness.
Saisons (French for ‘season’) are farmhouse ales traditionally brewed in the winter to be drunk in the summer.
They vary significantly, but saisons tend to be semi dry, very fruity in aroma and flavor.
Flanders Red Ale
Often described as the most wine-like of all beers, long periods of aging are employed, often in oak barrels.
Red malt gives the beer its colour and the matured beer is often blended with a younger batch before bottling to balance and round the character.
Infamous for their distinct sharp, fruity, sour and tart flavors which are created by special yeast strains. No hop bitterness.
Flanders Oud Bruin
Extremely varied, Oud Bruins are characterized by a slight vinegar or lactic sourness and spiciness to smooth and sweet.
Low to medium bitterness with no hop bitterness.
Typically old and new brown ales are blended, hence the name Oud Bruin (‘old brown’ in Dutch).
Usually ales with fruit, fruit juice or fruit syrup added instead of sugar to the first brew and refermented.
Fruit flavour usually dominates with malt flavor typically hidden and a low hop bitterness.
Inspired by the American India Pale Ale (IPA) and Double IPAs, Belgian IPA is very much a style in development – many candidates could easily fit in other categories.
Various malts are used, but Belgian IPAs are typically finished with Belgian yeast strains and using American hops.
Expect a pronounced dry hoppy edge, something between an American IPA crossed with a Belgian Tripel.
Lambic – Fruit
Lambic is fermented through exposure to wild yeasts and bacteria native to the Zenne valley, as opposed to cultivated strains.
This gives the beer its distinctive dry and cidery flavour, typically with a sour aftertaste.
In fruit lambics, whole fruits are traditionally added after spontaneous fermentation has started. Some breweries opt to use fruit / sugar syrups.
Belgian Pale Ale/Blond/Golden
Dominating the Belgian beer scene, Belgian pale ales are a light variation on pale ale, often made with pilsner malt.
They are traditionally less bitter than other pale ale varieties, using aged hops and having sweetish to toasty malt overtones.
Ranging from pale straw yellow to amber hues, most are accompanied by thick white heads. Flavors and aromas vary.
Belgian Strong Pale Ale/Blond/Golden
Like a Belgian pale ale, but higher alcohol content, ranging from hidden to spicy to evidently present.
Most are fruity and quite hoppy, but hop flavor and aroma will generally be within the low range and balanced.
Not a particularly distinctive Belgian beer, light straw to golden color and crystal clear. Hops are very prevalent usually with a spicy bitterness and or a spicy floral flavor and aroma.
Smooth and crisp with a clean malty palate, many are grassy.
Strongly resembling a Belgian strong pale ale and traditionally bright yellow to gold in colour.
Long-lasting head, with spicy, fruity and alcohol flavours supported by
a soft malt character. Medium to high bitterness with substantial carbonation.
High in alcohol and dry.
A refreshing, moderate strength wheat-based ale.
Very pale and cloudy in appearance due to it being unfiltered and the high level of wheat. Always spiced, crisp with a slight twang.