Mead The Gueuze - Hanssens Artisanaal bvba
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Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 72 | Display Reviews Only:
3.6/5 rDev -7.2%
Mead the Gueuze is best served chilled (40-45F) in a champagne flute or lambic-style tumbler. This one pours up voluptuosly with a craggy white head that engulfs the deep straw-orangish golden body. The aroma is alive with an acidic fruitiness (lemon, lime, etc...) with some noteable earthiness (freshly cut hay, morning dew, etc...), but also has the added complexity from the barnyard aromatics & oak. The flavor starts off with some graininess and expected tartness, but comes off rather balanced as the clover spiciness, oakiness and vanilla come into play with the wheat berries. The finish is off-dry with a just a touch of alcohol & honey sweetness. This medium-light bodied specialty makes for an interesting apertif before dinner or try pairing with some key lime & tupelo honey grilled shrimp. Here's to a fine marriage for lambic & mead lovers!
10-06-2005 20:03:37 | More by Beertracker
4.3/5 rDev +10.8%
12.7 ounce bottle. According to the bottle, this is made with 30% mead and 70% gueuze. I read some reviews of this beer before I opened it, so I was prepared for the exploding cork. This beer pours out yellow-orange with a ginormous white head. The aroma is vinegar, honey, lemon, and ass. The flavor is suprisingly tart at first, though it becomes slightly sweet with the honey flavor in the finish. The mead keeps this beer from being a regular kick-your-ass gueuze. It's not quite as funky as Hanssens regular gueze, though the uninitiated might find this extremely funky. No hint of alcohol. Damn good drinkability. This is really a unique and good beer.
07-16-2005 21:51:00 | More by beveragecaptain
3.18/5 rDev -18%
Picked up a bottle of this on a recent lambic binge at Kahn's in Indy. This is probably the most potent lambic that I've ever had.
Cork flies off upon merely loosening the cage and it pours a very cloudy orange with an uncontrolable head that thankfully subsides after a few minutes in the glass. Champagne of Belgium indeed. Aroma confuses me a little bit when put up against taste. Aroma is very characteristic of a traditional gueuze, lots of sour notes and a decent amount of funk, but the taste presents a not so subtle sweetness that seems a bit of out of place. The sweetness, funkiness, and tart flavors all struggle for domination and it ends up just seeming out of balance. Cool idea but it just didn't work for me.
05-26-2005 17:33:15 | More by soper2000
2.08/5 rDev -46.4%
Appearance - gold honeyed color in a Belgian glass. Extremely high effervescence yields 3 fingers of foam instantly. The soft bubbled head recedes unevenly to a thin solid cover. Lots of bead action off the bottom of the glass bowl.
Aroma - sharp lemony nose, lots of spiciness and a musty funkiness that isn't too offputting. I'm not a fan of that particular odor but it's not so bad. Still, I'm non-committal at this point.
Taste - tangy and sour. Kind of a cross between lemon and sour apple. The funkiness is still there and honestly, is still unpleasant to me. The high abv fotunately pops in, boozing up and amplifying the citrusy flavor enough for me to concentrate on that instead. I'm just not getting what I'm supposed to like about that ripe sweatsock flavor. If it's something acquired I will occasionally check up on and try this style during my lifelong beer adventure.
Mouthfeel - maximum bubbliness, you can't even get an initial taste until the champagne level bubbles get off your tastebuds. Lively and refreshing feel.
Drinkability - not something *I'd* buy, it just doesn't match up well on my palate.
04-19-2005 17:20:42 | More by brewdlyhooked13
4.25/5 rDev +9.5%
Appearence: Pours a hazy orange with a giant off-white head that fizzles away to damn near nothing.
Smell: When fresh out of the bottle, the smell burnt my nose, but now (about 5 minutes later) it's realitvely calm, with tart and sweet notes.
Taste and Mouthfeel: The flavor is crazy. It's sweet and fizzy, but still fruity, with giant honey notes. The mead adds such odd and simple complexity. The fruitiness kind of contrasts with the sticky sweetness of the honey, but it creates a wonderfully interesting flavor. The mouthfeel is fizzy and clingy.
Drinkability and Overall: What we have here is a very unique and interesting beer. Unlike anything else I've ever had, and I personally really enjoyed it. It may not be for everyone, but it's definitly worth a shot.
03-20-2005 23:36:19 | More by santoslhalper
2.48/5 rDev -36.1%
I can't believe that I am still alive after taking the cage off of this 375 ml bottle- the cork shot off like a cannon. The loudest pop, the fastest cork in the west. I hurt my finger and scared the crap out of the people in the room. I was expecting the ceiling to collapse any second. I wished I had read the warnings of other reviewers, because it is real, it is true. Wow. This beer gets points for getting attention.
Pours with a huge (and I mean huge) head with yellow, hazy beer below. Did I say lots of carbonation?
Aroma- guueze-like sour. No notes of honey/mead you might expect. Horseblanket and farmyard and funk.
Flavor is very different- the geueze sour is there, but it is tempered by the mead- there is some sweet notes, but they don't stand up to the gueuze. It is impossible for me to describe what's going on here. But the two flavors don't balance each other at all.
After that, though, I've gotta say, I just don't get this beer. I love Hanssens Gueuze, but this beer makes no sense to me. The ratings above make no sense- what am I comparing it to? To be honest, it boils down to the fact that I just didn't like this beer. I'm sorry to say that, because it is a very cool idea, but I can't go there.
12-30-2004 21:30:24 | More by Dukeofearl
3.8/5 rDev -2.1%
This came in a 350mL bottle with a cork in it. Pours a pale golden color with a tall white head that fades completely away, but takes a couple minutes. The aroma is mostly comprised of a honey sweetness. A little earthy and sour as well. The flavor has a lot of carbonation, very champagne-like. A little tart and pretty sweet. This is interesting for me - not nearly as sour as a gueuze, which I like. I probably won't have it again, but I'm glad I tried it.
11-12-2004 20:17:45 | More by clvand0
4.22/5 rDev +8.8%
Appearance This one is a bright orangish-yellow in color with tons of carbonation and a nice, full head.
Smell The sour lemons lead things off here and they are terrific. The aroma is very deep and exciting. The requisite farm smells are earthy, not superficial. Well done.
Taste There are some strong bitter notes I missed at the nose that packed quite a wallop at the taste. The raw lemon peel came out next and then . . . lo and behold, a nice kick from the mead. The light malty honey was an excellent compliment. They say the mix is 70/30 and that seems to be just about right.
Mouthfeel This one is almost medium-bodied but not quite. The light sourness will pucker your cheeks, but not excessively so. Together the gueuze and mead flavors give your mouth quite the welcome ride.
Drinkability Finally a gueuze that I can drink more than one of. This was a brilliant idea whoever came up with it and flawlessly executed.
10-25-2004 20:20:29 | More by RoyalT
4/5 rDev +3.1%
The cork in this 375ml was really stuck. I had to get a pair of pliers out to pop the cork. The cork disgorged and a foaming geyser quickly spilled from the bottle. It kept going for a good 15 seconds before I got tired of seeing my beer on the counter so I started pouring.
It has a nice slightly hazed burnished gold color with a hint of brass. The head settles quickly like champagne, but a thin skin of bubbles constantly covers the top. Served at 50 deg F in a Chimay chalice.
Smell is quite nice with apple cider, honey, lavender and a hint of brown sugar and molasses.
Taste is not quite as complex as the nose. Sharp cider and lemon flavors predominate with some pepper and a hint of green herbs in the back. Finishes sweeter than tart, but still balanced. Good, but not overwhelming.
Mouthfeel is good with the herbal dryness preparing the palate for another sip. Carbonation is just on the bad side of prickly, but still cleansing. Feels much like champagne.
I don't think I could drink more than one of these at a time. The sourness tires my mouth quickly.
10-11-2004 21:34:02 | More by silenius
3.93/5 rDev +1.3%
The beer decamps the 375ml green corked and wired bottle a luminous gold with a massive bubbly white head with the resultant lace a thin covering upon the glass. Nose is devastatingly tart, sour apples and a little musk at the end, start is lightly sweet with a pleasing grain profile, the top is thin. Finish id ferine in its acidity, vinous with a desert dry aftertaste, a yummy brew tis true, the mead gives it a bit of uniqueness, very nice.
09-18-2004 19:39:09 | More by Gusler
4.05/5 rDev +4.4%
Opaque pale golden in color with 1/2 inch head that rapidly settles. Extremely effervescent.
Has a champagne quality to it with undertones of hops and honey.
Like a party in my mouth! Champagne flavors are whisked away by bubbles to reveal some licorice characteristics and finally a bitter banana finish that lingers. Interesting brew. Well worth the $3.29!!!
06-24-2004 18:58:46 | More by cbl2
4.47/5 rDev +15.2%
A little bit of age. The nose has calmed down significantly. The carbonation is still violent (the cork explodes the second you loosen the cage). Honey has given way to bright lemon with some gueuze funk -- very Gruner Veltliner -- a wonderful match with fish. Controlled and, indeed, dynamic.
Original rating: 3.95
Musty and earthy on the nose with definite mead influence, herbal, spiced, and honeyed. Also applely and huge on champagne qualities. Though many compare the effervescence of traditional lambics to the bubbly, rarely do they actually match up because of most lambics incredibly tough acidity. And, while there is Krug, most champagne is much more palateable.
But Mead the Gueuze drinks in every way like a bready, yeasty champagne like Rodez or Sugot special club.
This is a wonderful achievement for brewing -- a food wine, er, beer that begs for baguette and sharp cheddar.
05-27-2004 14:14:29 | More by ngandhi
3.8/5 rDev -2.1%
Good lord! After two mere twists of the braided tie on the restraining cage, the entire nosepiece shot off like a bottle rocket on the 4th of July, with a "bang" just as loud, and nearly imbedded itself in the ceiling.
I've since located the cork, but the cage is MIA. I'm also feeling rather fortunate. Had my head been a few inches to the right, I'd likely be either blind or nursing a swollen head and a concussion.
Be careful with this beast. For real. Point it away from the body. Light fuse and get away.
Now for what matters.
Golden hued with rushing carbonation that ever-replenishes the off-white head.
The nose is gueuze, first and foremost. Soured apples and pino grigio. Misty, farmy, horsey, tart, rancid, acidic. The mead holds no trump over the aroma.
The taste, too, is gueuze dominated. Ripe and sharp up front. Apples and pears in all their acid-spewing glory. Acetic acid undercurrents with wafts of farmier things. Vinous white grape pinnings, twisted with lemon. The yeast nuance is generally light. Honey on the follow through, with some vanilla baggage. Aside from that, any mead influence goes unnoticed. It does, however, serve to temper the gueuze tones, which seems to belie many of this brew's strengths.
Streaming medium bodied. It appears quite light with its carbonated cloak.
I like this, but feel as though it is without a target audience. Gueuze geeks will look for something sharper and unadulterated. Gueuze haters will still turn their noses. Mead lovers will just scratch their heads, and ask why their beloved beverage was wasted on this bile.
04-29-2004 00:07:47 | More by cokes
4.33/5 rDev +11.6%
WARNING: Do not point the corked business end of this bottle at anyone. Before I had even totally loosened the cage, the cork left orbit.
EDIT:should have read the reviews first! Hysterical!
My bottle says 7.9%
Cloudy golden with very vigorous carbonation. I've never seen bubbles this large in any beverage. Huge white head that fades quickly.
If you like the smell of a lambic, you find this to be a bit sweeter. My eyes didn't begin to water immediately.
As it warmed the nose became more mead-like.
Nice and tart, but not too acidic in the finish. I do find various mead flavors that fade in and out, but if I didn't know this was a blend, I wouldn't have picked up on them (or imagined them). I can pick up on the wheat in this beer which is a lambic first for me.
As it has warmed I find honey in the back of my throat. Interesting.
Feels like a lambic. Very carbonated and a sharp acid tongue bite. Perfect.
Because this isn't too acidic I could a few bottles of this. While I love lambics it can sometimes be hard to finish a single bottle.
Without a doubt the smoothest gueuze I have ever had. Will it convince your lambic hating friends to love the style? No, but they might say that this one isn't as shitty as the others you've made them try. If you are somewhat intimidated by gueuzes try this one first, I think you'll be pleasantly suprised.
04-15-2004 18:56:16 | More by krberg
4.1/5 rDev +5.7%
I was unaware of the legend of the self-popping cork, fool that I am, or maybe I just forgot, but I made the mistake of pausing after inserting the screw, to get a glass of water, when, BAM!!! ---the thing shot out, opener and all, and in this case, all is my keychain, attached to the opener!
Then, out wafts that certain citric, funky, musty, dank olfactory aura, even from afar. Let's creep in for a closer inspection...That's it, alright, lemony, sour, deep and singular, call it horse-blanket or barnyard, or sour persimmons, buster, it is what it is!
Appearance: light, clear, golden color, very short, near-non-existent, pure white head, that lingers as tiny bubbles around the edges. Great effervescence, though, with bubble, constantly shooting forth.
Taste: pucker, wince, grimace...swalow, sip, repeat...very dry, after that initial souring, lightly drifts off the palate, without actually losing the flavor, it remains as an echo of this sharp, yet somehow sudenly soft, character. Now, I know what's going on, all of a sudden, and it is very intriquing: after the shock of the lambic on the palate, curling the tastebuds, the mead starts to peek through, as if calling the tongue back with the promise of sweetness and light, honey tones take over lemon, and a great blend gets going, with apple notes, too, pear and melon.
Now, I like it, now it's a thing I enjoy consuming. A very nice creation, perfect mellow desert choice, if your sweet tooth is not so predictable and sugar-bent as others.
03-23-2004 08:31:25 | More by feloniousmonk
3.85/5 rDev -0.8%
WARNING: The cap exploded once I undid the cage. Seriously people, aim it away from your face. Im not joking.
Hazy honey-peachy gold hue, it is a lovely color but I barely can see it. My lord there is a tremendous amount of head, massive and uncontrollable. It took multiple pours get the entire bottle in my glass. The white head was awesome, very rocky. Once I got done pouring the beer I realized how great the head retention was; a small cap lasted forever. The subsequent lacing was minimal. So far Ive been both scared and impressed. The nose is tart, very vibrant with oodles of funky notes, lemony, hay, a hint of pepper and clove, distant alcohol, and some fruity sweetness. The aromas seem mostly Gueuze in nature, as to be expected I guess, not to potent though. Still Im intrigued. The palate is a bit of a disappointment? It is very airy and amazingly parched. Wow, this is a pleasant sensation, even the alcohol burn on the back of the throat is dry. The taste is somewhat simple, somewhat neutral with some tart young pears, cloves, and notes of raw but faint honey, a bit of wool and leather, and lemon acidity. The finish was hotter than sweet and funkier than I was expecting. I really could notice the Mead sweetness in the aftertaste; it is very contrasting. This is a dandy little beer. The high abv is hardly noticeable; it is quite beguiling while quaffing it. The carbonation is massive, champagne-like mouthfeel, I found it difficult to pinpoint the true bulk in the body and to the best of my ability Id say it was medium/medium-light. I found Mead the Gueuze to be very drinkable and quite charming. There is definitely a time and a place for the beer; to bad I cant get it locally. I purchased my bottle in Iowa City. I will get more.
03-12-2004 03:16:56 | More by bditty187
3.95/5 rDev +1.8%
ok first off, be careful when opening this. all i did was undo the cage and it blew open and almost assassinated me. that would have sucked. anyway, it pours out hazy and golden with a large white bubbly head. champagne like carbonation rises. big gueuze smell. barny, stanky, grassy, sweaty, sour...you either love it or you dont. in the mouth it is tart and tangy as expected. raw and unrefined...but you really do notice the mead. it cuts it down, mellows it out, and sends it on its way via a light honey aftertaste. interesting. a bit overcarbonated for my specific tastes, lots of burping is required. the alcohol is hidden quite well, infact i wouldnt have known this was a heavy hitter had i not been previously informed. everyone should give this one a shot sometime. i liked it.
$2.99 a bottle
03-07-2004 05:26:26 | More by DESTRO
3.58/5 rDev -7.7%
The cork popped on its own accord! Scared the crap out of me. Pours a fresh full foamy head that died quite quickly. The color is electric amber with a little chill haze - effervescent like champagne. Smells musky (yep, horse blanket), and corky. Taste has a tart beginning and a dry finish. It was difficult to distinguish much sweetness. Lively mouthfeel - very champagnesque - effervescent and tart with a dry finish.
02-29-2004 05:13:01 | More by SeanChouffe
4.15/5 rDev +7%
Wow, everyone was right. You twist off the cage...and...BAM! The cork seperate from the cage, goes right into your celing and ricochets around your kitchen, like a silver bullet chasing after a werewolf. You gather the metal, cork, and cage and throw them away...you pour the beer and get like all foam. 15 minutes later a lovely glass full of murky golden nectar is in front of you...with a head of white foam, that finally dies down to just a smidgen of covering.
Like others have mentioned this brew is 90% gueuze in aroma! Horseblanket, and traditional lambic funk shine through here with the honey part of the mead barely shining through in the aroma.
The taste, on the other hand, is something else all together. It's very neutral, not very acidic, and quite chocked full of honey. This reminds me very much of Braggot, by Magic Hat.
The mouthfeel is spritzy and refreshing...very champagne-like in its nature and the drinkability is excellent as well. Quite the interesting concoction, this is!
02-23-2004 22:49:38 | More by francisweizen
3.53/5 rDev -9%
This cork came off with some fucking power. What an explosion! Damn. I hope I didn't wake the baby sleeping right above the ceiling.
Slightly hazed golden appearance with a steady and vigorous stream of carbonation rising from the bottome of the glass. This one throws out a huge bubbly and fizzy white head. Retention is solid. The aroma's got some of that funky barnyard stuff going on but also some sweet candy like overatures. The mouthfeel is quite lively and just a little gaseous. Body is about light medium. This beer is tart and a little acrid. It has a sharp husky edge to it. The acidity is quite high. And the tartness is held in check. This one isn't so mouth puckering. It is quite dry though. Decent enough lambic.
01-15-2004 06:40:42 | More by Bighuge
4/5 rDev +3.1%
Presentation: A 375ml green glass wine shaped bottle. Cork and caged, the cage has a bright red metal cap holding the bulbous half-in / half-out cork in place.
Appearance: Jesus Fin Christ!!! Virgin Imbibers BEWARE!!! this one really does POP its Cork BIG Time!!!! As soon as the cage was off, I just literally touched the side of the cork and it was out like a RPG and off into outer space - well stuck in my roof actually. Huge gun smoke and a reverberating noise must surely have woken my neighbors. I expected a SWAT team outside anytime. Slightly hazy pale golden body with a massive expanded foam head with every top-up pour that always eventually disappears to a nothing covering giving the classic Mead appearance in the end.
Nose: The beer maybe 70% lambic, but the nose is very much 95% funky horse stables and a farmyard Gueuzeness with a mix of acetic yeasty tartness. The latter 5% has a sweetness that no doubt comes from the Mead in the back end.
Taste: Spritzy gueuze-like entrance with an acidic tart lemon feel in the ending. After a few glasses of this and the mouth throbs with Mead the Gueuze and a honey-gueuze tingle. Light ending, the sharp tartness of the Gueuze is totally removed by the sweet Mead finish. Its almost as if the Gueuze ending that you are expecting - is extracted right from under your nose. Being a Gueuze man I find this rather annoying after a while, but I can cut some slack in this instance.
Mouthfeel: Immense propulsive carbonation when poured into the glass, which is also resident in the mouth when imbibed.
Drinkability: Pretty quaffable actually, I emptied and filled my 1970s Belle-Vue glass three times whilst trying to work out how to remove the impregnated Cork for my Roof.
Overall: Personally, it seems like a fucking travesty to blend Hanssens Gueuze with anything other than my own intestinal juices. But I suppose mixing it with Lurgashall Mead from England is an inventive exception that I dont mind seeing.
Nevertheless, a very interesting beer that totally belies its stated 9% ABV and which makes for an interesting change. I think Ill be sticking to the straight Gueuze in future though. BTW - Just be **VERY** careful with the cork and wear your Safety Glasses when opening this one!!!
12-28-2003 06:43:19 | More by TheLongBeachBum
3.58/5 rDev -7.7%
Like everyone else I should have read about this before opening! Luckily nothing happened when I removed the wire cage, but when I gave the cork a slight twist to loosen it up, I ended up putting a nice divot in the ceiling! (luckily it wasn't mine). Poured a yellow-orange, with lots of carbonation, reminding me of champagne. aroma was faint honey sweet and lemon tart. So far so good. But I was disappointed in the taste. It had a good blend of mead sweetness and the lambic tartness, when you first taste it, but then it is just too champagne dry. As someone who likes champagne it wan't bad! But I wasn't looking for champagne!
12-14-2003 19:43:54 | More by Indybeer
4.13/5 rDev +6.4%
Hazed golden peach color with a huge, fizzy white head. This bottle is probably around four years old and it seems that the individual characteristics of this beer have melded together nicely. Nose eye-wateringly provocative, with notes of citrus, must, melon, honey and the typical cheese-funk of spontaneous fermenting lambic beer. Taste is a wonderful blend of both worlds -- mead and gueuze lambic. Oaky, acidic, tart, and sweet, this beer provides the palate a variety of flavor. The oak-aged gueuze creates notes of vanilla and citrus, while the mead imparts flavors of honey and melon. Mouthfeel is smooth and light with a slightly spritzy sensation lingering. A very easily drinkable beer for 9% abv. It's almost impossible to detect until the beer is, of course, well within the confines of one's stomach. Overall, this is a very interestingly blend of old fashioned Lurgashall Mead and Hanssens gueuze, one of Belgium's most traditional. Enjoyable stuff.
11-20-2003 03:02:19 | More by Jon
4/5 rDev +3.1%
Tralucent golden hue. Furious carbonation yields an animated, frothy porcelain white head that fizzles readily into a spotty, thin layer. Waft of floral, lavender derived honey and black pepper hits the nose upfront, but is quickly offset by cheesy must and buttermilk like lactic tartness. Phenol becomes more pronounced in aroma as it breathes, progressing from a stately herbal presence, to clove, then approaches medicinal, yet it works. Quite intriguing aromawise. Flavorwise, this brew is reminescent of an unsweetened hard cider fermented with a phenolic Belgian yeast. Tartness akin to well underripe pear incipient in flavor yields to a melange of earthy black licorice, damp, incubated hay, and impressions of ground clove with a shaving of rubber. Evanescent sweetness darts in and immediately out mid palate, leaving behind only the floral essence of honey, without any of the associated sugar. Bone dry, and very well attenuated. I'd wager the combination of enteric bacteria, wild and primary yeast and high fermentability of honey has facilitated a final specific gravity around 1.000 or less. The dearth of dextrins leaves the mouthfeel overly fluid, yet ominously light on the palate. Notes of lemon flesh surface late, lending an agreeably citric, and slightly juicy presence. Finishes with a fleeting suggestion of lemon drops and unsweetened licorice. Only a trace of ethanol warmth surfaces after the swallow suggesting strength below the listed 9.0% ABV. An unbelievably odd and enjoyable brew. Perhaps the antithesis to the commonly brewed honey ale.
10-31-2003 02:40:05 | More by marc77
3.88/5 rDev 0%
Curiously the Mead came from a winery in Britain (Lurgashall Winery) while the gueuze is Belgian..
The cork launched from its bottle berth like a missile. The beer burst upon the scene in a torrent-- lucky my glass caught all! Nary a drop wasted.
The flavor is not as sweet as I anticipated, especially given the mead moniker. I dont know what Lurgashall Mead tastes like thus I cant get specific about its contribution to the union of flavors-- of Mead and Gueuze. There is a definite hint of honey mead in both the nose and the flavor start although overall the profile is not a honey sweet but a well balanced commingling of sweet and sour-like overtones. I find that the general flavor body to be a bit thin. Furthermore, the flavor complexity Ive tasted in other gueuzes doesnt manifest itself in this lambic blend. Relative flavor and finish is clean and lingering. The beer produces a foamy head.
In summary, an interesting and flavorful combination of Mead and traditional Gueuze.
10-10-2003 06:34:38 | More by gueuzeonhigh
Mead The Gueuze from Hanssens Artisanaal bvba
87 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.