Appearance: very clear and transparent when straight out of the bottle. Deep mahogany brownish red. Surprisingly transparent, very attractive looking beer initially. It keeps a good color when the yeast gets stirred up and poured in, but gets cloudy, loses some of it’s luster. It has a snappy looking carbonation on it, and a decent lace. It was hard to get the true color from the camera tonight. The picture above shows it OK… the pictures below show it a little bitter.
Aroma: strong Belgian candied fruit up front… caramel lingers behind but sticks around. There’s a booze aroma coming off of it. Very pleasant all around, smells like a nice Belgian ale.
Flavor: A lot of flavors are there, but they’re surprisingly balanced. I predominantly get what I can only describe as Chimay flavor on these beer. It has a lot of caramel and dried fruit notes that I expected. The specialty malts and Candi Syrup did its job well in this one. I get some lingering balance of bittering hops in there too. The carbonation is snappy and lightly effervescent. This is a great drinking beer. I don’t have a lot of bad things to say about this one.
Hyper Critical: While I think this beer turned out fantastic, I think if there is a next time for this beer, I could get better efficiencies on the brew day. The grains for this one weren’t crushed enough for BIAB, and I came up well short of my goal of 8.6% ABV. While the beer was supposed to go something like 17.8ºP down to 2.7ºP, the actual stats were 15.8ºP to 2.8ºP, making this beer 7.3% ABV. Not bad, but not what I was exactly shooting for. Would I brew this beer again? Hell yeah, this was a fantastic tasting Belgian ale.