Another witbier straight from Belgium.
I introduce titled Queen – Blanche de Namur.
The beer, which I chose for today’s tasting, is called Blanche de Namur and is a Belgian witbier.
The brewery, which produces it is Brasserie Du Bocq. It was founded by Martin Belot and remains to this day the family fully independent plant.
At the beginning of its activity brewery only operate in winter – when farmers in the country have less of their works and be able to work in a brewery. The situation changed after World War I.
The first beer brewed at the time was La Gauloise, which enjoyed a high popularity. This beer is indeed still in offer of the brewery in many varieties.
Production began to grow. The brewery was a PLC since 1949. 100% family concern, the brewery still remains independent of all Belgian or foreign brewing groups.
Brasserie du Bocq exports theirs beers mainly to France, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Italy, Great Britain, Spain, Switzerland, Finland, Australia, Japan.
Brewery beautifully situated in the valley of the river Bocq in the village Purnod, brews its beers using traditional methods and these are top-fermentation beers with secondary fermentation in the bottle.
Currently, the annual output reaches 94,000 hectoliters and sales shoot up to 10 million euros.
But back to today’s beer…
The first thing that can make us think is the name of beer – what it means?
The second – the label on the bottle reminiscent of card from a medieval manuscript. Is this design alludes to something?
It turns out that such…
Blanca van Namen (also: Blanche van Namen) lived in the fourteenth century, in years 1320-1363.
In France, known as Blanche de Namur, in Sweden – Blanka de Namur, in England known as Blanche of Namur.
She was born in the area of today Flanders as the eldest daughter of Jan I van Namen (John I of Namur) and Maria van Artesië (Marie of Artois – granddaughter of King of France, Louis VIII).
Namen (Namur) is the name of the county, now in Belgium, which ruled Blanka’s father.
Blanche married the King of Sweden and Norway – Magnus Eriksson.
In 1335 she moved to Scandinavia and performed its duties as the royal wife – until 1343 she was the queen of Norway, and until her death in 1363 – the queen of Sweden.
She was very politically and socially active and noticeable, not only as a queen, as many stories and songs were written about her.
Queen Blanche is one of the most well-known of the Swedish/Norwegian medieval queens.
And just in honour of Queen Blanche Witbier from Brasserie du Bocq has been named after her.
And this is not just any beer.
Is proud of its titles:
- World’s Best Wheat Beer 2009
- Europe’s Best Belgian Style Witbier 2012
- Europe Silver 2013
A chilled bottle is waiting – I begin my tasting.
Name: BLANCHE DE NAMUR (Witbier, alc. 4,5% vol)
|The beer has a very bright colour, is straw,
cloudy, milky with yeast sediment.
Foam is very high, white, creamy, fine-bubbles
– fairly quickly perforates.
|The main element of aroma is coriander, then we have citrus fruits.
It is also perceptible aroma of chewing gum and slightly vine.
|The first violin plays a coriander,
then we have clear citrusy flavour, both lemons and oranges (a little sweet, a little tart).
Next we have additional spices – peppery spice, a pinch of cinnamon and cloves.
Is sweetness, is light sour. Somewhere from afar resound notes of yeasts.
Herbal bitterness – present, palpable. Aftertaste is tangy, spicy.
This light bitterness dissolves later, escapes – this beer leaves in mouth sweetness spiced with coriander.
Carbonation fairly high.
Bodied at a medium level – in this beer someone might be missing the body, but so that it is refreshing, light.
I wrote out a little, but there is no denying that Blanche de Namur conquered my heart.
This is the first described by me wheat beers, where the foreground is coriander. In combination with citruses is an aromatic refreshing composition.
On the occasion of tasting Hoegaarden I set up just such a flavour profile (legendary Celis), but there I sensed more cloves (which I love anyway).
Here, for this, we have definitely coriander.
Flavour of Blanche is very complex, this beer is very aromatic. We have a whole set of spices, we have citrusy cocktail, there is a sweetness and acidity. This all is emphasized by dry chord of bitterness.
The beer is excellent and worthy of recommending to all amateurs of wheat beers.