La Roja

Well, interesting to say the least, but in the end it was disappointing. A difficult beer to review on lots on levels, but I’ll have a go!

Nice bottle presentation in the 750 mL size, $7.99 in lots of Atlanta outlets. This has been in GA for a few months.

On opening, a large amount of carbonation serves to spill quite a substantial amount of the contents over the counter – a little annoying but I can get over it. In the Duvel tulip this has great presence in terms of the head and lacing (EXCELLENT), but the body has a ruddy red, dirty appearance that is less attractive. This color is a pet peeve of mine (a nasty, murky color with some floaties) and without it this would otherwise be a 5 on the appearance score.

Taste and aroma are one and the same. Funky, earthy acidic farmhouse notes. Basically this is a refined Flanders Red with acidity lower than you would find in something like a Rodenbach, but still maintaining the classic English, West Country rural cider notes. Definitely has a countryside feel with plenty of “horse-blanket” and Saison funk – which is very acceptable for the style – but at the same time gives a greater acidity than I would expect.

I’m confused over the style. Biere de Garde to me means 3 Monts and Jenlain. This is “Rodenbach Lite”, a Flanders Red that is less assertive and aggressive with out the drinkability and sweetness I have previously associated with the style. I guess my education continues!

Try it and see what you think.

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09/09/2006
Format:
bottle
ABV: 7.2 %
Appearance: 4.5
Taste: 3.5
Mouthfeel: 3
Smell: 4
Overall: 3.5
Total: 3.6
Series Name:
Year:

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