Traditionally, krieks are very similar to geuze in that they are a blend of fermented lambics, starting with the youngest (which is more sugary) to the oldest (with a more wild taste). Usually actual fruit is added (during the fermentation / aging process) to intensity the intended flavor and aroma (ex. Raspberry, Peach, etc.). During this process, the sugars from the fruit are also consumed. Common examples of lambics are cherries, raspberries, and Muscat grapes. Although most people would be familiar with the Lindemans series of lambics (including their Apple).
Appreciating what comprises a Kriek and more importantly a lambic, we proceeded to enjoy and evaluate the Transatlantique Kriek.
New Belgium's Transatlantique pours an initial strong reddish-white foamy that recedes quickly leaving behind little or no lace on top of its burgundy and clear surface. A continued observance reveals a small ridgeline of lace inside the glass.
Swirling the glass around you pick up a definite sourness, along with some cherry, and a minor vinegar nose.
Sipping one cannot ponder the sourness merging with vinegar, cherries, and a minor farmhouse flavor, before finishing what can only be presumed to be roses. Overall this beer produces a medium weight on the tongue and might go well with some cheese or maybe a a granny smith apple, walnut salad.
In a never-ending quest to create new beers and defy category, New Belgium Brewing and Brewerij Boon of Belgium have partnered together again to create Transatlantique Kriek - a spontaneously fermented lambic ale made with Polish cherries.
This authentic kriek beer began life in the oaken vessels at Frank Boon's brewery in the Lembeek region of Belgium. After more than two years aging, Boon's offering shipped across the Atlantic and found its way to the intuitive palate of New Belgium's Brewmaster Peter Bouckaert. After much sampling and internal consultation, Peter and his brew staff created a full-bodied golden lager to round out the light-bodied kriek.
The cherry nose gives way to a pleasingly sour flash across the palate that rolls gently into a slightly sweet finish. Crisp, effervescent carbonation keeps the mouthfeel bright and delightfully tingly.
Alcohol is 8% by volume.
You Should Try, as far as krieks go this one will definitely throw you for a loop if you are a fan of more familiar lambics. There is almost a cherry raisin quality that this beer exudes, but worth trying if only to say that you had it.
About the photos’ author
Paul “Fruit Trees” Orchard, is an amateur craft beer enthusiast and amateur photographer. Throughout the many years in craft beer he is always carrying a camera (smartphone, digital, traditional) and is invites you to see that beer can also be exciting even if you can’t drink the photo.
In accordance with new FTC regulations regarding bloggers and endorsements, the aforementioned company has provided me a free sample that was used for research prior to writing this review.