Gouden Carolus – Cuvee Van de Keizer (Belgium)

Gouden Carolus – Cuvee Van de Keizer (Belgium)

Winner: Red Label (Blond)

1) Blue Label (Brune) 2011, 11% ABV

“The Cuvée van de Keizer@ is brewed every year from the 24th February on, birthday of Charles the Fifth, and in a limited quantity. This dark, exclusive, powerful and subtle beer is refermented in the bottle.”

  • My Rating: B-
  • Why I like it: deep, rich and smooth
  • Where I got it: Brewery Creek
  • How much: ~$15 (after 10%), 75cl, Winter/2011
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: nah
  • Would I recommend this to beer afficianados: yes

Tasting notes: pours light root beer brown, minimal head compared to the blond, ringed retention, lots of slow-moving CO2 streams. Strong thick and heavy malts on the nose. Drinks with 8/10-level sweetness up front, alcoholic presence is apparent from the start, tastes of heavy malt, brown sugar (demerara/turbinado), figs, scotch, caramel, mild-medium bitter finish. Med-high complexity, med-high depth, good transitions, great carry, okay drinkability (less as the temperature raises). A potent dark beer with lots of flavour but also heavy and hits harder than the blond.

2) Red Label (Blond) 2010, 10.5% ABV

on the back label:

“The Cuvée van de Keizer@ is brewed every year from the 24th February on, birthday of Charles the Fifth, and in a limited quantity. This blond, exclusive, powerful and subtle beer is refermented in the bottle.”

  • My Rating: B+
  • Why I like it: super smooth and crisp when chilled
  • Where I got it: Brewery Creek
  • How much: ~$15 (after 10%), 75cl, Winter/2011
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: nah
  • Would I recommend this to beer afficianados: yes

Tasting notes: pours golden cloudy yellow with a giant-sized thick foamy head, excellent retention, slow-moving CO2 streams. A lot of bright clover honey-honeysuckle and chamomile on the nose. Burst of chamomile up front, subdued alcohol presence throughout, strong 8/10-level sweetness, honey, pineapple, wheatcoriander, and a soft off-dry finish, malty, semi-bitter. Medium complexity, med-high depth, good transitions, excellent carry, excellent drinkability. Hits like a truck 1/2way through a single glass. Super smooth and recommended.