“Traditional top-fermentation beer that referments in the bottle. Brewed by the unique family brewery De Halve Maan, which has been located in the historical heart of Bruges since 1856. Straffe Hendrik is an authentic Belgian Triple beer, still brewed according to the original recipe.”
Served in a Trappist tulip. This tripel pours a hazy amber with a billowing three finger head which casually deconstructs and establishes a thick halo. We’re seeing some healthy webbed lace trails as we indulge. We just LOVE a traditional Belgian tripel and the nose on this bad boy is just that. We get a tonne of sweet honey, caramel malts and yeasty phenols along with mashed banana, fresh pear, candied orange and plenty of spice. Earthy and herbal hops also push through as a somewhat retrained alcohol scent completes it. Superb aroma, really hitting the traditional note perfectly. The texture of the beer is well carbobated, medium in body and slightly sticky with a nice hint of warmth from the 9% ABV. Remarkably pleasant to drink considering its weight. Very well balanced foreflavour. We get those lovely sweet malts in the centre with hints of tangy orange, herbs and a mild-medium bitterness that firms through the mid. The warmth from the ABV is brought on slightly as it’s highlighted with a hint of candied citrus. It finishes on a warm boozy note but it’s softened by a caramel sweetness that goes the length on the back palate. Brilliant. There really is no substitute for a traditional Belgian tripel and the brewers at Halve Maan have it completely dialled in. How can anyone compete with 120 years of brewing to the same recipe? You can’t really, so just sit back and bask in the history and sheer deliciousness of this beer.