Hop Harvest 2012 – De Ranke (Belgium)

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  • My Rating: B-

Hop Harvest 2012 – De Ranke, 6% ABV – 750ml, (Dottignie, Belgium)

on the front side label:

“Unfiltered and unpasteurized top-fermented beer with secondary fermentation in the bottle and taste evolution.”

  • Style: (vintage) Belgium Ale
  • Taste Profile: creamy sweet hops -> caramel malts/citrus/yeast -> sharp bitter hops/lingering bitter finish.
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek
  • How much: $13 (after 10% off), February 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: yes; it’s well crafted

Visual: Vintage beer is usually good; you can expect them to pay attention to details for that particular year. Shame it isn’t corked but capped instead. Pours cloudy translucent orange with a very large creamy foamy head with long retention, lots of lacing, and lots of activity.

Nose: orange citrus fruity hops with sweet honeyed malts

Attack: ultra-creamy texture, 6/10-sweetness, fresh hops

Mid-palate: caramel malts, orange citrus, grassy, yeasty

Finish: sharp bitter hops, cuts off-dry, lingering bitter finish.

Summary: Well crafted and drinkable straight out of the fridge into a chilled glass. Bitterness and crispness fade and becomes heavy as it warms up.

Saison & Noir de Dottignies – Brouwerij de Ranke (Belgium)

Brouwerij de Ranke – * de Dottignies (Dottignies, Belgium)

1) Saison de Dottignies, 5.5% ABV – 33cl

On the front label:

“Unfiltered and unpasteurized top-fermented beer with secondary fermentation in the bottle and taste evolution.”

  • Style: Saison
  • My Rating: B-
  • Taste Profile: Medium sweet/hops -> grapefruit bitter/orange peel -> lingering hoppy bitter finish.
  • Where I got it: Legacy Liquor
  • How much: $4.50 (after 10%), Feb 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: yes

Tasting notes: pours cloudy copper orange with a small head, ringed retention, abundant lively effervescence. Sweet malts and honeyed citrus on the nose. Crisp creamy 5/10-sweetness up front, quickly transitioning into hoppy grapefruit bitterness, light malts, orange, bitter peel, finishing lingering dry hopped. Medium complexity, medium depth, good transitions, good carry, good drinkability. Great full-bodiedness for a 5.5% ABV beer.

2) Noir de Dottignies, 9% ABV – 33cl

  • Style: Saison
  • My Rating: B-
  • Taste Profile: Heavy sweet malts -> cola/root beer/bittersweet roast -> lingering bitter finish.
  • Where I got it: Legacy Liquor
  • How much: $4.50 (after 10%), Feb 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: yes

Tasting notes: pours cloudy dark root beer brown, huge foamy creamy head, good retention, sticky lacing. Thick heavy malts on the nose. Intense malty caramel 9/10-sweetness up front laced with alcohol, tastes of cola, root beer, bittersweet roast, finishing lingering bitter. Medium complexity, med-high depth, good carry, good transitions, decent drinkability. Drinks somewhat heavy, but full-bodied.