Beer of the Week is sponsored by the Lion & Rose. Each week, we introduce you to a wonderful brew that’s a little bit different and well worth seeking out.
Maredsous 6 Blonde
If you were to examine the label of this beer at a glance, you might think its name was Maredsous Abbaye-Abdij Blonde. But it’s actually Maredsous 6 Blonde, with the numeral 6 fading into a crest at the bottom.
This was the first beer made at the Benedictine Abbey of Maredsous, and it is still brewed nearby, though the company’s website says it had to move because the abbey opened a school on its grounds. I guess beer and education aren’t necessarily compatible, though I have worked hard to incorporate the two through many years of painstaking practice.
It’s a classic Belgian blonde with a tantalizing, deep golden glow that emanates from the glass as you begin to pour it. Though the beer can be a bit cloudy, once it enters the glass, you notice more the contrast of the creamy white head on top.
The aromas that spring boldly from the glass are yeast mixed with a pear-like fruitiness and spices such as coriander. There’s also a faint funkiness that could show initially, depending on how old the bottle is, but it dissipates after a sip or two. You can also detect a note of alcohol, which is likely because the beer has a 6 percent alcohol volume.
There’s a sweet maltiness that greets you on your first taste balanced by an intriguing, slight bitterness that adds a little complexity. Your conversation may stop for a minute as you ponder what’s happening in the glass. Yeast and apple mingle, while the coriander on the nose comes through as a refreshing citrus note on the palate, leaving your mouth clean as it leads into a hoppy, spicy finish that lingers.
In all, quite pleasant and enjoyable, like the autumn-tinged evenings we’ve been experiencing of late.
Because the Maredsous 6 is so clean and thirst quenching, it would be great with spicy foods, such as the Lion & Rose’s Hackney Hot Wings or even the Limerick Fries (deep-fried green beans) with its spicy ranch, if you looking for something to snack. Or try the Beefeaters Pub Burger with jalapeño slices added, if you want a meal.
Maredsous makes a whole line of excellent beers (with higher numbers), many of which you can sample at the Lion & Rose. If you want to learn more about Maredsous, don’t believe what you read on the label about the website. That address will take you to an insurance company. Instead, try www.maredsousbieres.be.