Festival Preview: WA: Washington Beer Commission’s Belgianfest is coming 2/4. Our thoughts, Part 2 of 2

Coming here from Part 1 of our thoughts? Great!

What is Part 1 of our thoughts? Well click here for more information …

Festival Preview: WA: Washington Beer Commission’s Belgianfest is coming 2/4. Our thoughts, Part 1 of 2

image from Belgianfest courtesy of our Flickr page Obviously you survived the inches of snow and ice, followed by the occasional flood. So why not reward yourself with a visit to Belgianfest, at the Bell Harbor on the pier.

Historically Belgian-style / Belgian beers have remained an acquired taste for many. But those who have moved past their inhibitions have been rewarded as Belgian ales provide taste and aroma unmatched by any other style.

Now before you start moving that mouse cursor over to comment this isn't a case where we’re putting American-style / English-style beers like Porters, Stouts, or India Pale Ale on trial. Rather we simply wish to remind people that when you aren't craving a Deschutes Black Butte Porter, Diamond Knot India Pale Ale, or Snoqualmie Black Frog Stout; you consider a Belgian-style beer like Elysian Bete Blanche, or even Green Flash Le Freak.

So with this in mind we encourage you to visit the Pier the first Saturday in February as Washington brewers line up to remind you that they too can make a great Belgian-style Dubbel, Tripel, Blonde, or Wild Ale.

But with so few ticket what is a consumer to try? Good question. And we would like to reward you with our list of must-try beers that will be featured at this year's festival.

Saturday February 4th, 2012 Session One 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM $30 Advance Tickets
Belgianfest at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center
2211 Alaskan Way, Pier 66 Seattle, WA 98121

Saturday February 4th, 2012 Session Two 5:30 PM to 9:30 PM $30 Advance Tickets
Belgianfest at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center
2211 Alaskan Way, Pier 66 Seattle, WA 98121

Continued from Part 1 

Naked City Brewery

  • La Touche De Mal.
  • Belgian Strong Golden Ale

Our Thoughts. We can’t say enough about the Dons.
With a reputation for pouring some of the best Washington brewery beers around Seattle, the brewery often is missed. Brewer (and co-owner) Don Webb knows his Belgians and we think that the La Touche De Mal is a sure fire beer to try.

Paradise Creek Brewery

  • Paradise Hoe. “A refreshing and traditional Belgian Wit with a nose that offers you wonderful orange, subtle banana, clove and other sweet fruit. One taste of this cloudy straw colored ale confirms what you smell and opens up notes of coriander and just a dash of pepper. The white wheat and a little oats give this beer a nice medium bodied mouth feel. ABV 5.8%”

Pike Brewing Company

  • Saison.

Our Thoughts. Try Dean’s Saison.

Ram Restaurant & Brewery

  • Barrel #1. “Light, tart and refreshing - a blonde ale fermented in a barrel by many a mysterious critter - 4.5% ABV”
  • Barrel #2. “An intensely flavored dark ale, fermented in an old wine barrel with a couple of Brett strains and hints of lactobacilius. 6.5% ABV”
  • BBlage-a-trois. “A blend of 3 wildly fermented bbls made exclusively for this year’s Belgian Fest.”

Our Thoughts. Barrel #1 !

Redhook Brewery

  • Allocation. “Allocation is a super drinkable Belgian Session Ale. Medium in body and amber hued with ample handfuls of wheat malt to keep the beer’s finish light and dry. Mild phenolic notes from the Trappist yeast offer up mild hints of spiciness and banana. It is tradition for the Monastic brewers in Belgium to get a daily allocation of the lightest (session) beer they produce after their work is done.”

Our Thoughts. Give them a second look.

Schooner EXACT Brewing Co.

  • Schoon White. “Belgian-style wheat ale brewed with Pilsner malt, wheat malt, unmalted wheat and oats. Fermented with a traditional Belgian Wit beer strain. Hallertauer hops and a subtle addition of spices including citrus zest and hibiscus make this a thirst quenching and refreshing beverage. 5.2 % ABV 22 IBU's
  • Biere de SODO. “A hoppy Belgian-style pale ale brewed with Pilsner malt, sugar and a generous helping of Styrian Golding hops. Fermented with a blend of a unique Belgian yeast and a special strain of brettanomyces, this beer is easy drinking with an ever so slight funkiness. 6.4% ABV, 38 IBU's”
  • Abbaye de Schooner Dubbel. “A Belgian-style ale brewed with a complex and distinctive blend of German and Belgian malts. Hallertauer hops, Belgian candi sugar and organic flame raisins complement the rich, toasted, caramel malt and yeast finish. 6.9% ABV, 20 IBU's
  • Saison Goélette “A traditional Belgian farmhouse ale brewed with Pilsner malt, rye malt, turbinado sugar and Hallertauer hops. 5.8% ABV, 24 IBU's”

Silver City Brewery

  • The Giant Made Of Shadows. “This Dark Strong Ale is rich in big malt character, candy like sweetness, and warming alcohol. Suggestions of chocolate and dried fruits pair well with oak and vinous notes from extended aging in Tempranillo wine barrels. 9.5% ABV”
  • Nutcracker 2005 Special Brown Ale. “A festive beer (8.6 % ABV), Nutcracker rings in the Holiday Season with a medley of dark roasted malt, fruit and spice. Some hints of fruit (plum, cherry, peach) come from a wonderful and distinctive Belgian yeast strain. Additionally, ginger, orange and tangerine peel was added to spice things up.”
  • La Fat 2007. “La Fat is Silver City Fat Scotch Ale fermented with a Belgian yeast noted for creating big, spicy phenol character. La Fat goes through a secondary fermentation on French Oak. La Fat combines classic Belgian characteristics with Scotch like toffee and caramel notes with hints of oak and peat. ABV 9.2%”

Our Thoughts. Vintage is best.
We love Don Spencer and his staff at Silver City Brewery. But the idea of missing out on 2005 vintage Belgian-styled Brown Ale or a four year old La Fat is stressing us out.

Snipes Mountain Brewing

  • Golden Ale. “Belgian-style Golden Strong made with Belgian pilsner malt, clear candi syrup and NW beet sugar. Fermented with an authentic Belgian. golden strain. 9.5% ABV, 27 IBU’s"

Our Thoughts. Blonde and proud of it.
With a lineup like this its easy to get lost in the Dubbels, Tripels, Singles, and Darks (among others). Instead we ask you to try a Golden Strong. But be careful having too many. At 9.50% this beer will make you rethink getting behind the wheel of anything on four wheels (including go carts).

Snoqualmie Falls Brewing Company

  • Spring Fever. “Orange hues, rich malt flavors, spicy coriander overtones and fruity, tropical aromas make this one beautiful beer for fans of Belgian styles. Spring Fever is crafted from the finest Two-Row, Munich, Carastan and Belgian Aromatic malts, Columbus and Czech. Saaz hops, spiced with coriander and fermented with Belgian ale yeast. 7.0% ABV”

Our Thoughts. Snoqualmie Wit
Pronounced Vit a beer like this goes well with just about anything

Sound Brewery

  • Dubbel Entendre. “Comforting aromas of chocolate malt and dark toffee, with a hint of banana and stone fruits. A dark abbey style ale with a subtle rich maltiness and a dry, spicy finish. 8.0% ABV”
  • Koperen Ketel. “Biscuity Belgian malt balanced with the finest Slovenian Styrian Goldings hops, Koperen Ketel has a delicate herbal, fruity aroma and a clean dry finish making for a refreshing, easy drinking copper color ale. 5.0% ABV”

Our Thoughts. Dubbel
Honestly we don’t think you can wrong with these guys. Ever since they have come onto the scene they have been producing some great beers.

Wingman Brewers
  • Black Widow. “A dark Belgian strong ale aged in a Pont21 Cabernet Sauvignon barrel from 21 Cellars. A Cab Sav nose is followed by the familiar Belgian flavors of ripe fruit and figs. 11.4% ABV”
  • Cerise Noire. “A light lambic influenced sour ale. Featuring pediococcus, lactobasillus, brettanomyces, and black cherry tea. 6% ABV”

Our Thoughts. Cherish the sourness.
We will be heading directly to Wingman to try this cerise first.

See ya at the festival!

Cheers

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