I’ve been dragooned into holding a tasting, after WomanforallSaisons auctioned off my “services” (and evidently a bit of my cellar) for an office fundraiser. I have a group of 6 of mainly non-Belgians living in Brussels, at least some of whom have decent familiarity with beer. But the brief remains an introductory exploration of the range of what’s out there. So, I solicit your ideas. Any pitfalls in this path? The program will be 6 rounds x ~15cl, which I think is enough to show off a range, without overwhelming anyone, and leaving people with enough capacity for some bonus time. (I’m sure we’ll have another 1-2 beers per person leftover). Too much, too little? Snacks: Bread or crackers, and probably one of the firm Chimay cheeses, Orval if I can get it, young Brugge if I can’t. Maybe the cheese comes out at the end, though. As for the selections, I’m thinking of stuff that people can find but won’t just stumble on at every corner shop. The ordering is up for debate as well. Saison: I don’t think that have enough Dupont in stock so will probably do Pipaix, hopefully illustrating the farmhouse as well as inventive streaks in Belgian brewing. I have enough of various Fantôme to do its but it’s a bit less of a historical choice. Thoughts? Gueuze: Probably Cantillon, 3-4 years old (I’ll have to check). Blond: something to show off bright grains, fruit character.. I doubt I have anything in stock so may have to provision myself. What would be the quintessential choice? Or does Orval slot in here, forget the blond? Red-brown: I don’t have more than one 75cl of Rodenbach Grand Cru but have various others. What’d’be a good introductory one? Also, is it important that everyone in a small group tastes the same beer, or is it enough to play within a range of styles? Quad: And it should be a Trappist (possible exception for St. B.), because the monastic tradition is another theme of discussion. Rochefort 10 seems an obvious choice although I probably have enough Westvleteren. Anyway, the real question is whether to just serve one straight up, or give a bit of aged alongside a bit of fresh? Would that be a plus or just too fussy? Finally I’m left with a wild card… which doesn’t have to be the last thing, could be slotted in elsewhere. A fruited lambic, but would 3 acidic brews overdo it, and anyway where do you slot it in? (The hostess and auction winner likes ‘em, though.) Work in the Orval somewhere (at least they get a taste of hops)? Some sort of barrel-aged oddity (I think I have a few Cuvee de Montagne) to finish off? Possibly bore them with a wheat (much as I like them) after the gueuze? Keep the blond but work in an Orval after it? Thanks for any thoughts on that, the above selections, the ordering, whatever.