Sunday, December 23, 2007


Merry Christmas!

Gold, incense and myrrh were the gifts of choice some two thousand years ago. Whilst gold may still be a great gift, the La Binchoise brewery claims it has brewed a superior replacement for both incense and myrrh.

Their Christmas beer, La Binchoise Speciale Noël, pours cloudy and copper with a big, beige head. For the nose there are liquorice, caramel, spicy yeast aromas with a hint of pear. In the mouth fruity and caramel flavours mix with coriander and some other dry spices. The finish is dry and yeasty, and the beer provides warming alcohol appropriate for this cold, festive season.

When it comes to festivities, the brewery should know what it is talking about. It is situated in the small Hainaut town of Binche, which comes to life once a year with some wild celebrations, that have given rise to the English word "binge". Not well-known outside Belgium their Mardi Gras carnival is a must-see. During the procession, the Gille Character wears his impressive hat covered with ostrich feather and throws hundreds of oranges to (or more often, at) the public.

The Christmas celebration may be rather more subdued and peaceful, but the golden fruit remains one of its countless treats. Another and one highly recommended, is La Binchoise Speciale Noël. Indeed, I see the whole range of Chrsistmas beers as the brewers' annual gifts to the craft beer enthusiasts, as a thank-you for another year of drinking their beer. I, for one, do not miss the incense and myrrh. A merry, beery Christmas to all!

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A great beer tour in belgium is Belgium Beer Tour

I went on the tour myself and found it great
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