Friday, April 25, 2014
Beer Review: Geuze Cuvée J&J Blauw
Reviewing the infamous Geuze Cuvée J&J Blauw from Brouwerij Drie Fonteinen out of Belgium.
2003 vintage bottle served in a Drie Fonteinen fountain logo gueuze glass and enjoyed on 02/11/14. Huge thank you and shout out to Paul for graciously sharing this whale! Review is from iPhone notes.
Appearance: Pours a murky, unfiltered honey color with a nice fade to yellow at the bottom of the glass with three fingers of head that slowly recedes to a thick half finger layer. Poor lacing and retention, but what else would you expect for an 11 year old gueuze? 5/5
Smell: What is striking about this beer is how complex and balanced it is. The big unique character here is a distinct cedar wood aroma, which I absolutely adore. Cedar wood, hay/straw, lemon rind, and a very light/subtle barnyard funk. There’s also a little bit of “raisin” that comes through around room temperature. At first, there’s a touch of pool water/chlorine in the nose, but that breathes out and disappears after 15 or so minutes. Very subtle barnyard character and a hint of resinousness. Has a nice residual citrus/fruity brightness, which grows as the beer warms up. 5/5
Taste: Straw-forward upfront, with a little more barnyard funk than nose but still pretty mellow and surprisingly subtle overall for an 11 year old gueuze. Growing bitter lemon rind flavor and tartness and a little orange too as it warms up. At first, at fridge temp, there is minimal sourness. However,t by the time this beer reaches room temperature it gains a nice tartness and bright citrus character that reminds me of the 2007 OGV we drank the other night. Mineral water, straw and faint cedar round out the taste. The cedar is not nearly as pronounced in the taste as it is in the nose, but it is still there. Everything is nicely mixed here. I am shocked by how relatively not unpleasantly funky this beer is. 5/5
Mouthfeel: Light bodied, low carbonation. Nice light, but growing tartness with a very dry finish. Acidity level is perfect. 4.75/5
Overall: The cigar lover’s sour! This one largely lived up to the hype for me. The cedar-forward nose was absolutely incredible, and the taste, while different (in that it had less citrus and cedar and more straw/must/funk and mineral character) was just as good. My only knock on this brew is that I would have liked a little more carbonation or tartness to give the taste a bit more liveliness on the palate. Cheers!
Cost: $250 for a 750 ml bottle.