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La Blonde D'’Esquelbecq / Thiriez Blonde - Brasserie Thiriez

Not Rated.
La Blonde D'Â’Esquelbecq / Thiriez BlondeLa Blonde D'Â’Esquelbecq / Thiriez Blonde

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

113 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 113
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 10.17%
Wants: 18
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Thiriez visit their website
France

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Local name - La Blonde d'’Esquelbecq
US Import - Thiriez Blonde

Description on US bottle label:
“Daniel Thiriez’s rustic little brick-and-beam brewery graces the village of Esquelbecq, plunk in the middle of the rolling farm country of French Flanders. With a brewing degree from a Belgian university, and decidedly ‘Belgian-oriented,’ Monsieur Thiriez makes ales with an earthy, slightly wild character that recalls the early days of farmhouse brewing, before there was a border between France and Belgium. The delicate spicy champagne aromas of this thirst-quenching blonde beauty are quickly followed by a bracing rush of whole fresh hops.”

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of La Blonde D'’Esquelbecq / Thiriez Blonde Alström Bros
Ratings: 113 | Reviews: 76 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of joe1510
4.38/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml
$9.99
Sam's Marcey

Thiriez Blonde is a dry-hopped saison that pours a deep golden with fine particles that cause just a touch of haze. Blonde is darker then its little brother Xxtra. Lively carbonation explodes to the surface and keeps the head alive and pillowy. The clean white head leaves spotty lacing on its way down. This beer simply looks refreshing.

Pale maltiness kicks things off in the nose along with a candi sugar like sweetness, although I'm pretty sure none is added. Plenty of grassy hay like hoppiness from both the hop additions and the dry hopping, mostly from the latter. I would love to get a bottle of this fresh from the brewery to see how all that hoppiness jumps out. There's a nice touch of both sweet and tart lemon in here that sort of weaves its way through all the other aromas and creates a wonderful freshness.

Pale malt meets the tongue just as it did the aroma, not much flavor there but a slight sweetness before orange and lemon drops come in mid-palate. The candy is combined with a grassy noble-like hop bitterness that just keeps growing throughout. A bit of tart lemon comes through on the finish creating a very nice drink. This is one of those great summer beers.

This beer has a really good body, light with a healthy carbonation that keeps things moving along while massaging the tongue. The body leaves a drying effect on the swallow.

Thiriez Blonde is a highly drinkable libation, great thirst quencher, and supremely enjoyable. The dryness keeps me coming back again and again until I realize I'm drinking far too fast.

This is another grit beer from Brasserie Thiriez. This and the Xxtra are two beers I can not get enough of. Both are wonderful and the dry hopping adds another level to one of my already favorite styles.

joe1510, May 11, 2008
Photo of ATPete
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draught at Thiriez Brasserie

A- Yellow orange, semi translucent, some lacing.

S- Fresh fruits, good malt aroma, yet a bit grassy with some hop

T- Grassy, earthy, pilsnerish initial bite, nice bitter hop finish, very well balanced.

M- Medium light, very bright, good carbonation

D- Very good, wish i could have bought a bottle or two but simply had no room in my luggage.

ATPete, May 05, 2008
Photo of geexploitation
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours bright and golden, with a delicately bubbled but quite voluminous bone-white head. Lots of little floating yeasties in the beer. The aroma is thick and almost pungent with green, herbal continental hops. At lower temperatures it is almost skunky (although perhaps time has just allowed that aspect to blow off), but things get softer and rounder with time. Underneath the hops are barely discernible malts and some rich, fecund yeast smells. On the palate, smooth and sweet for an instant before the evocative, very green hops come crashing in with a bitterness that never lets go. There's a bit of fruit, namely pears, and some brisk herbal flavors toward the finish. The beer has good length and lasting bitterness. Overall, this very hoppy saison is long on charms and short on detractions. It doesn't measure up to the best of the genre in terms of complexity, but it is very pleasant and stretches the style in a moerate and pleasing manner. Well done.

geexploitation, Apr 26, 2008
Photo of RickSawyer
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a blone, white pine colored brew with a tightly wound compact head that holds the glass nicely. Settles to a thin disk afloat the beer. Smell is sweet, short bread, white cake, strawberry, hay, raspberry syrup, and some citrus (hops) opening a nice floral boquet to the nostrils. Taste initially is sweet, bready, hints of green hay, touch of mango and citrus hops. Finish is a bit vegital with some corn. Champaign-esque mouthfeel. Quite enjoyable saison.

RickSawyer, Apr 06, 2008
Photo of thierrynantes
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33cl), tasted in 2006.
Appearance : golden color, with white foam head
Smell : lemon and herbal aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : bitter spicy taste, aromatic, yeast, Hops continue to tickle the palate lafter the finish
Drinkability : a good beer in the style Belgian pale ale

thierrynantes, Mar 16, 2008
Photo of Brad007
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Color: Pours a cloudy golden blond color with streaks of amber and a thick foamy head.

Aroma: Certainly is dry hopped. Hint of spice with raisin. Smooth and malty.

Taste: Sweet and malty upfront with strong hints of raisin flavor. Smooth. Crisp. Very drinkable.

Mouthfeel: Somewhat hoppy (from the dry hopping) with a smoothness.

Verdict: A very drinkable example of a farmhouse ale. I'm giving it high marks for drinkability and average on most other things.

Brad007, Feb 27, 2008
Photo of watchnerd
3.58/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another near-gusher from Thiriez, hyper carbonated and ejaculating out of the top of the bottle. Not as unique as the Extra, but an enjoyable blonde. Great head, nice lacing, moderate hop presence. An enjoyable brew. Worth the money compared to blondes brewed in North America? Debatable.

watchnerd, Jan 11, 2008
Photo of Gusler
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Upon opening, the 750ml bottle, the beer exploded like Krakatau, this produced a huge sticky mess all over my desk, as I poured the beer, it created a astronomic frothy white head that took up half the glass, took several minutes to get the glass full. Slowly, ever so slowly it vanished leaving a nice golden body, with the lace a thin patchy sheet, nose has a sweet malt tone, hints of wet horse blanket, citrus like crispness. Front has a sweet and sour taste, some bitterness at the back, top is moderate in feel. Finish is dynamically acidic the hops controlled, very dry lingering aftertaste, “Saisons”, rank high on my list of great beer styles.

Gusler, Nov 02, 2007
Photo of orfeu
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Golden sheen with driving carbonation rising toward a billowing and sticky egg-shell white head. Foam disappears quickly but leaves lacing for days. Unassuming bouquet, with grassy hop notes that are at times nearly sulfuric popping in and out amongst an overall fruit-laden aroma bed: blackberries, pears, lemon verbena. The taste is soft and exquisite; no fireworks, but a wonderful collection of floral and fruit-based flavors are certainly on display: lemon and honeyed orange sections, golden delicious apples, green grapeskins. The largely rounded edges are sharpened at the finish with an herbal, bitter hop bite that leaves a faintly mineral (sulfur) wake in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is charmingly unobtrusive as well, save for a sharp battering of carbonated mid-palate punch. Quenching and extremely conducive to slow sipping on a relaxing spring evening. Very nice beer.

orfeu, Apr 18, 2007
Photo of sloejams
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle actually read "Bière blonde au Froment Esquelbècoise" but it must be the same as this beer.

My buddy ordered the bière blonde, which was admittedly better than my choice - La Rouge Flamande. Bastard. Thankfully, he shared quite a bit of it. The bottle was poured into a chalice for the unfiltered fizzy yellow nectar. Aroma of cloves and yeast. The taste was quite refreshing - some lemon, lots of yeast which even lent to some breadiness. Lots of flavor and quite drinkable.

sloejams, Jan 09, 2007
Photo of scruffwhor
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A hazey blonde/ambrosia champagne is released from a 750ml bottle that just can't contain the carbonation any longer once the cap is pulled. Humongous head that easily overflowes the glass after a modest pour. The aroma is a little subtle, not as earthy as other saisons. But definelty effervescant with some spicey malts and light citrus hops. The tastes is dry, but not tart. Just champagne with some subtle Euro spices in the crystal like malts. The palate is very carboanted, but lacks that real earthy, yet subtle tartness is lacking in this saison.

scruffwhor, Jan 09, 2007
Photo of ultralarry2006
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 750 ml. bottle. Leaves a rocky two finger-plus-out-of- control head that eventually settles down, and has excellent retention and some good lacing. Body is an opaque hazy gold. Looks beautiful.

Smell - herbal, grassy, and slightly spicy hops, some horse blanket, hint of toasty, biscuity malt.

Taste - mostly as promised by the nose, but also actually somewhat more sour on the finish. The grassy, herbal hops and horse blanket dominate the barely-there biscuity malt. More horse blanket on the finish ( the sour ) .

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, and slightly slick from the hops.

Drinkability - this is decent, but not really great, so I wouldn't have it often, or more than two 12 oz. servings per session before wanting a change of taste. Also, this seems to be more of a Belgian Pale Ale, ala Popperings, than a Saison such as Dupont.

ultralarry2006, Dec 12, 2006
Photo of Jredner
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma is a hearty grain/hop mix that has wheat/light barley notes and sweeter citrus components...think mandarin oranges as opposed to the more bitter Florida orange. Some herbal vegetal notes appear as well. The body is a hazy yellow/gold and holds a silly sized three finger thick and creamy white head that is moderately lasting .Fore is dry with an herbal/medicinal bitterness, mild vanilla notes, lemongrass, wheat husks, sweetened cereal flakes and a zesty (not quite spicy) finish that then fades into a somewhat floral aftertatse. I think this may be an under appreciated style. The few samples I have had seem to have a conistent profile, but none seem well received. I think it may be that there is not that one intense element that many styles have. This is a subtle beer, delicate and flowery both in flavor and structure. Yet this very drinkable...very approachable and I think it could be a serviceable crossover style.

Jredner, Nov 15, 2006
Photo of Sammy
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A big overpouring flow of white foam. Very foamy head, on lighter coloured body. A bit of spice and yeast aroma. Drinkable French saison taste, pleasant and moderate complexity noted in multi-coursed lunch. More spicy and not too sweet. Well hopped and appropriate carbonation. Medium mouthfeel.

Sammy, Nov 05, 2006
Photo of Hautacam
4.88/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Slight hazy golden...the head is huge and foamy....laces nicely and remains.

Smells like most saisons...malt, spice and a hint of citrus.

I loved this stuff with the first sip. Complex combo of slightly sweet banana, pear, lots of spices that I can't really sort out, but great !..a little hint of funk and some really nice hops in a dry finish.

The mouthfeel was perfect....silky high micro-carbonation. Medium body.

At 6% this is a very drinkable beer. Highly recommended.

Hautacam, Oct 14, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Butterscotch-gold with so much carbonation that my desktop is now a mess and foam is continuing to ooze out of the bottle. The furiously ascending bubbles agitate the generous number of fine particulates to such an extent that it makes the beer look like a just-shaken snow globe. Now that the ecru-colored whipped egg whites cap has deflated to midglass, I can think about a second pour. Very little lace unfortunately.

The nose is more sweetly pale malty than expected and less hoppy. There's no question that noble hops are a major player, but Blonde isn't anywhere close to the hop bomb that is XXtra. Notes of spiced banana give the beer a hefe weizen yeasty vibe which is unusual... and welcome.

Hops contribute much more on the palate, making me a happy man. The usual Belgian saison flavors apply with at least a two-fold amplification over the classic versions. Brasserie Thiriez's recent love affair with hops--even if some consider it Americanizing the beer--is a welcome thing as far as I'm concerned.

Bracingily bitter, lemon peppery, warmly spicy flavors fill my mouth with each unending of the glass and make me wish that I had opened this bottle several months ago. There's still plenty of lupulin zing though. There isn't much farmhouse funk however. It's as if the brewers chose to focus on hops and not confuse matters by including other aggressive flavors. Fine by me.

It appears as if the insanely vigorous carbonation has burned itself out because the mouthfeel, as I enter the second half of the bottle, is fine until the finish, which feels a trifle flat. As a result, the flavor profile loses volume too quickly and leaves a mouthful memory of simplicity rather than complexity. With a steadier, more long-lasting carbonation, the final three scores might have been a half point higher.

In the end, Thiriez Blonde fits comfortably between the stupendously delicious Thiriez XXtra and the comparatively mundane Thiriez Amber. I'd like to see Brasserie Thiriez address the carbonation issue because this could easily be another in a long line of great saisons to come out of the best saison-producing region on planet Earth.

BuckeyeNation, Aug 12, 2006
Photo of silenius
4.45/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a hazy gold with a large rocky head. As I drain the beer, the foam sticks to the glass. Beautiful.

Taste begins with a slightly spicy hoppiness with an earthy herbaceous middle. I believe this beer if slightly skunked, but that simply added a little complexity in my opinion.

Taste is a solid herbaceous hoppy flavor with a mild malt middle. The hops flavor lingers after the beer is drunk.

The beer has a perfectly creamy and thick mouthfeel to start with a bit of zing in the middle. It ends with a bittering dryness. The first sip is a pleasing at the last.

To me, this seemed like a close knock-off of Dupont's Saison. Nice show.

silenius, Jun 19, 2006
Photo of bjohnson
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy golden color with yellow hues. Huge two finger frothy foamy milkshake like white head that has pretty good retention and leaves good lace.
S: Aromas herbal and fruity hops with a lemony undertone. Slight metallic smell, but not very big. Grassy smell to it also.
T & M: Fruity, bananalike flavor with those belgium esters. Lemony flavor in there also. Slight hop bite with a nice dry aftertaste. Bitterness is prevalent. Smooth and silky through the mouth that goes down very nicely with a tasty aftertaste. Earthy taste with a little grittyness, but still a great tasting ale.
D: Drinkable beer and one I would have again. Haven't had a bunch of this style, so this is a new path I'm going down. Very good summer beer.

bjohnson, Jun 10, 2006
Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

To me this beer is made for socializing on nice spring/early summer days like today in western NY.Poured you guessed it blond with some burnt orange hue with a big fluffy white head that stuck like glue to the glass as it inched its way down slowly,herbal hops dominate the aromas with light notes of lemon zest and iron.Flavor wise it starts out quite dry and leafy and herbal with undertones of lemon but a lightly sweet honey character come thru midway it then settles back to a leafy hop finish.This beer is pretty delicate in my mind nothing hits you in the face but its like I said the perfect beer to drink in pleasant weather as it is quite refreshing at quaffable.

oberon, Jun 04, 2006
Photo of Bighuge
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Very little beer. Very much head. Yet another charged up Thiriez. (That makes 3 now.) The white foam takes up 2/3 of the glass. I must wait patiently for my sip of nectar. The beer underneath the thick crop is pale yellow and slightly hazed.

Aroma: Lemon zest, farmyard funk, anise, white pepper.

Taste: Farmyard earthiness. Herbal qualities. Cracked black pepper. Lemon pepper. And licorice. Musty as well.

Mouthfeel: Fizzy and airy. A little gaseous. Light bodied.

Drinkability: Better mouthfeel would lead to better drinkability. The taste is good enough. But it's first of all, hard to get at the nectar. Second of all, airy and gaseous when I do get it.

Bighuge, May 30, 2006
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 750ml green glass bottle. Sealed with a shiny black plastic covering on the neck leading one to have the impression that it may be corked, but once easily removed (thanks to one of those nifty pre-installed tabs) it revealed a large simple brass crown cap. Main label has a country feel to it, but seems to be a US import version. Listed at 6.0% Alc. Vol., but with no freshness date. Imported by the Shelton Brothers.

Description to the left of the bottle explains:
“Daniel Thiriez’s rustic little brick-and-beam brewery graces the village of Esquelbecq, plunk in the middle of the rolling farm country of French Flanders. With a brewing degree from a Belgian university, and decidedly ‘Belgian-oriented,’ Monsieur Thiriez makes ales with an earthy, slightly wild character that recalls the early days of farmhouse brewing, before there was a border between France and Belgium. The delicate spicy champagne aromas of this thirst-quenching blonde beauty are quickly followed by a bracing rush of whole fresh hops.”


Appearance: Heavily carbonated, the pour takes care and attention but even so the head races up the Maredsous tall goblet quickly. 3” deep head forms quickly but takes time to slowly morphs into a pock-marked, rocky surfaced affair with moonscape looks. Peach body with pale straw is filled with streamers. Striking looks!

Nose: Fresh Saison-like nose, herbs, spices, lemon, muted grapefruits, lime, dry hops and a shrill yeast background with a fresh hop dimension. It all has a simple feel with a mild hint of complexity to add interest.

Taste: Hops, yeast and spiced limes have a flashing start. Peppery pine soaked hops align with a thick grassy middle. Earthy tones and some yeast play tag with dusted sweetness which itself has a powdered texture and seems suppressed by a doughy personality. Simple enough frontage, but with a complex background when examined in detail.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation hits the front and adds some brightness to the body. The lively feel is effervescent and jumpy at times but always up there. Body has a medium strength though; the conditioning adds at least a half point to the 4.0 I posted for this. Smooth yet snappy.

Drinkability: This is a lovely drinkable and very refreshing French Blonde Ale with a nice hop twang and a Saison make-up to add intrigue. A bit too expensive to drink all the time, but at half the price shown ($9.99), I probably would. Draining the 750ml didn’t take too much effort at all.

Overall: I had the distinct pleasure to visit Brasserie Thiriez way back in April 2003 during my annual Easter Belgium trip with Wakefield CAMRA. At that time I wasn’t too taken with the range of beers to be perfectly frank, but they certainly seem to have improved in quality. An Énorme Merci to BigHuge for this one.

Recommended.

TheLongBeachBum, May 29, 2006
Photo of Sephiroth
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours with huge head, some yeasties, the body is a light straw color. Crisp, lightly spiced aroma, noticeable European hops.

Tastes quite refreshing. Maybe a touch of black pepper, amongst other things. Spices are outdone by the hops. Mouthfeel is light and creamy. Easily drinkable.

Sephiroth, May 06, 2006
Photo of meathookjones
4.63/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml. Cloudy golden orange with a huge head that collapse into an island of foam in the center of the glass. It leaves about as much lace as possible on the glass. Nice floral hoppy aroma with a goof amount of funky farmy notes. A bit spicy and also some sweet fruit mixed in. Sweet fruits mixed with a great spicy hoppiness over farmy flavors. Some pepper and other spices along with some earthy tones. Finishes up with a light hop spiciness and some mild fruit notes. Fairly light body but fitting, crisp and refreshing with good carbonation. I could drink this all day simply wonderful stuff.

meathookjones, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of OldSock
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – 750 ml bottle from Julio's. Mini volcano of foam when I open it, followed by a steady overflow of foam even after my first pour. It was a well handles bottle that has been in my possession for a few months, the yeast must have gotten frisky in the bottle. Big rocky white head that has moderate staying power and leaves bits of lacing. The beer is translucent orange-amber with some sediment in it, most likely due to the overcarbonation.

Smell – Tropical fruit punch with some yeast and light earthy hops. Really a strong full aroma at least partially due to the over zealous carbonation. There are notes of alcohol and toasted malt as well. Not super funky, but still a unique yeast profile.

Taste – The overcarbonation is forgiven, this is certainly a tasty beer. Not nearly as funky as many saisons, but it has layers of dry malt, earthy hops and loads of fruity yeast complexity. Towards the bitter side, but not nearly the hop flavor/aroma of xxtra.

Mouthfeel – Strong carbonation, fine for the style, on top of a light medium body.

Drinkability & Notes – A solid saison with great drinkability, I just hope that the overcarbonation is not a common problem with this beer.

OldSock, Mar 05, 2006
Photo of ADR
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Hazy pale ghostly yellow appearance, highly carbonated giant white head rises up over an inch in the glass. Beautiful complicated patterns of intricate lace. Tart aroma, almost sulfurous with a backdrop of lemon and stuffy confectioner's sugar. Carbonation seems to work its way out in the pour, this is very soft and light in the mouth, almost cottony. Mild with a not too sweet malt beginning, doughy with straw. Excellent snap of bittering at the finish, not drawn-out but more pointed like the snap of your fingers. Aroma adds another interesting layer to the beer. Excellent mouthfeel, I enjoyed this one a lot.

ADR, Jan 11, 2006
La Blonde D'’Esquelbecq / Thiriez Blonde from Brasserie Thiriez
90 out of 100 based on 113 ratings.