The last reviewed beer, Westmalle, was a Trappist beer. This Tongerlo is an example of an ‘Abdijbier’ or Abbey beer. Thus linked to a monastery, yet commercially brewed by Haacht. So no Authentic Trappist Product then, but still a beer in the same style. But hey, this beer has an official hallmark too. It’s a “recognized Belgian abbey beer”.
It turns out this hallmark is issued by the union of Belgian brewers and it seems there are some rules. The hallmark was issued for the first time in 1999 and the rules are slightly different for Abbey beers from before that time, and those that applied afterwards. Some rules are pretty obvious. There are more rules but here are a few: There has to be a link with an Abbey. Part of the proceeds must go to this Abbey and the beer has to be brewed there before (history taken in to account). In this case we are talking about the “Norbertijnen abdij” from 1133! Well my kind of marketing I guess.
Before we move on I (again) have to say that my beer is aged a little and has a best before date of 27/5/10. But this bottle can lie in your cellar much longer.
Color: Clowdy gold.
Nose: Fresh, lemons and oranges. Sour fresh. Not a lot of depot, only some hints of yeast. Still this has undergone a third fermentation stage inside the bottle.
Taste: Oranges and medium bitter. Despite the elevated bitterness also a very nice and fresh and sour note, that makes this extremely drinkable. Appetizingly fruity and it doesn’t even seem to be 8% ABV. Slightly sweet with hints of banana.
A very good beer. I like it a lot. Extremely drinkable Tripel with a very good balance. I would like to have another one please?