Brigand - Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
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Ratings: 181 | Reviews: 114 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Cwrw:
4.18/5 rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
Dedicated to the Flemish peasants who ousted the French out of Ingelmunster. Nice.
I bought this in Brussels and it has been in my cellar for nearly two years. 750ml corked bottle with blue foil around the neck; the label is blue and simple, showing a "Brigand" on alert. A presentation that works nicely. Attractive bottle.
Tasted at cellar temperature in a chalice. Popping the cork releases a very fruity and winey aroma from the neck immediately. Brigand is a slightly hazy nectarine colour; orange-caramel when held to light. The head is bone-white and very consistent--like table cream or ice-cream when viewed from the top. Superior walls of full lacing, intricate with tiny bubbles. A glorious head, really: velvety and and long-lived. The aroma is one of those aromas only possessed by a solid Belgian pale ale--this is delectable. I cannot say, but the beer smells AGED, and I daresay the two years in my cellar has allowed this beer's smell to mature and develop. Dusty fruits, a salty/sugary resin, with plenty of well-balanced caramel malt. Definite candy sugar a la Duvel. Full on the hopping once you get past the sugar...bitter and metallic. Lots of spices here too, most noticeably some vanilla and anise, also some cloves and coriander. Some honey and plenty of good malting. AS good as Duvel's aroma for me personally. The whole thing just works somehow. An excellent aged, full vinous character for the nose. The tasting reveals a little less body than I would expect from the aroma, but here again Brigand is fairly spotless. Lots of apple and tangerine up front, plenty of sugar. In the middle is more sugar but with some solid malting a little on the salty side. The finish is nice with green apple and light citrus with earthy hop dryness. Vinous red grape notes as the tasting continues...Lots of fruits and sugars..not super-complex but tasty nonetheless. Very aged taste. The mouthfeel is full and very fine, bordering on creamy velvet. mmm. Alcohol is there, not hidden but not allowed to be in your face either. I could not venture to guess since I never tasted the beer young, but as a 2004 vintage I would recommend this beer exceedingly. Solid, without fault.
Serving type: bottle
06-13-2006 09:53:39 | More by Cwrw
More User Reviews:
United Kingdom (England)
3.74/5 rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
A 330ml bottle with a BB of June 2013, so it's a bit out of date. I've had this for ages - I seem to recall buying it in a Belgian supermarket as long ago as 2010. Stored in my garage since then. I'm hoping the ABV will have helped to preserve it from excessive degradation.
Poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottle conditioned. A rich golden-amber hue with good carbonation. Produces a huge head of creamy white foam with good retention; this slowly subsides to a thick surface layer. Aroma of fruity yeast esters with hints of raisins, mild banana, subtle apricot/peach, faint dried fruit, spice, a twinge of marzipan, earthiness and sugar. Slightly sweet and acidic, with a serious whiff of booze in the background.
Tastes of fruity yeast and mild caramel malt, with a bone-dry finish. Notes of raisins, apricots, mild banana, dried fruit, a hint of marzipan, pepper, spice, sugar, earthy yeast and faint stewed leaves. Hints of cardboard, sourness and alcohol in the background. Highly attenuated, followed by a lingering yeastiness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and very dry, with well-judged carbonation and decent body. Could be a tad thicker for the strength. Pretty astringent, accompanied by an aftertaste of fruity yeast, earthiness and booze.
A strong Belgian ale that packs a punch. Looks lovely, while the aroma and flavour are replete with spicy, fruity yeast esters. The booze also makes itself known. Body is OK but could be creamier. This bottle seems to have stood the test of time, but I wonder what a fresher example would be like. I might grab one sometime and find out. Anyway, a decent brew with a classic Belgian quality to it. Worth a punt if you stumble across it.
Serving type: bottle
12-15-2013 02:15:03 | More by jazzyjeff13
Brigand from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 181 ratings.