After including Maredsous in my review of Belgian beers (More Belgians! – Nov. 24 2011), I promised myself that at some point, I’d be sure to try their tripel and their blonde as soon as I could. At the time, I assumed that I’d have to wait until I got back to Ottawa since I knew of no liquor stores or bars here that carry their lineup. However, much to my surprise, I happened to chance upon some at a local liquor store: Cascadia Liquor. Score one for local business!
And in case I didn’t describe them in much detail last time, Maredsous is an Abbey brewery located in the Belgian community of the same name. Their beer is brewed in accordance with the Benedictine tradition where beer is fermented first in the cask and then again in the bottle using active yeast cultures. Though not a Trappist operation, it is still an historic brewery that is steeped in tradition and renowned for making authentic, traditional Belgian beers that come in the distinctive stubby, tiered-neck bottles
So, thanks to the good folks who stock plenty local favorites, plus a respectable selection from down south and overseas, I am finally able to give the strongest beer from the Maredsous Brewery its due!
Maredsous Tripel: Triple beers, which refers to the triple fermentation process, are typically renowned for their strength, rich taste, and light color. At 10% alc/vol, this beer certainly has the strength aspect covered. However, I was surprised to notice that this particular triple was clear and a deep amber hue. I was also surprised by the nose, which was very sweet and sugary. In terms of taste, it comes on with strong malts and finishes dry, and has a slight touch of sweetness that is reminiscent of ice wine or strong cider. A truly interesting barley wine if ever there was one! 4.5/5
For those interested, I recommend checking out the Cascadia Liquor Store. The selection is quite broad, and they have a pretty damn awesome international selection which boasts several great Belgian beers: