Timmermans Oude Gueuze belongs to a select elite of Belgian beers. The label 'Oude Gueuze' is protected as an ‘appellation contrôlée’, by the European Union. As a style, Oude Gueuze is considered by many to be ‘the champagne of beers’, and its production is limited.
That is certainly the case with Timmermans Oude Gueuze, which has just 6,000 hl of annual output. But while it's short on the ground, it's long on time – this is a beer that takes some patience to prepare.
The brewer carefully selects from among different-aged lambieks, in order to obtain a perfect flavor for the Oude Gueuze. Old lambiek, aged for three years in wooden barrels, is blended with young lambiek, part-fermented, thus ensuring spontaneous fermentation in the bottle.
It's also a beer which doesn't stop evolving. After the production of Timmermans Oude Gueuze, it is refermented for four months in the bottle, and continues to improve for at least 20 years, if stored correctly.
Spontaneous fermentation. Oude Gueuze is a blend of lambic (or lambiek) beer that's been exposed to the wild yeasts and bacteria native to the Zenne valley, in which Brussels lies.
Malted barley, wheat, well-seasoned hops and water.
Colour & Transparency
Gold blonde, with a fine head of foam, and fine strings of carbon gas bubbles.
6 – 7 °C / 42 °F – 44 °F
Timmermans Oude Gueuze can be served in the no-nonsense, straight-edged Timmermans lambic glass, printed with the brewer's famed heraldry.
Character, Tastes & Aromas
The first impression is of a distinct freshness in the aroma, an unfettered sense of the wild origins of its yeast. In the mouth, Timmermans has a pleasing sourness, a flavour that's at once fresh and tart, while developing a fruitiness that remains clean, and uncluttered.
There are slight touches of wood and hints of nuts, even of stony fruits (particularly apricot), but they do not overwhelm. Neither do the flavours of the hop. Although they are present in the beer, their slight bitterness can pass by unnoticed, unless you are looking for it. The finish is long and lingering, not unlike that of a white wine, or a dry cider.
Timmermans Oude Gueuze is an excellent aperitif beer, one that will accompany a plate of oysters superbly. But it also goes well with a nice strong cheese, such as the Belgian Herve, or classic meaty dishes, such as stew. This type of pleasingly acidic lambiek beer can be used an interesting alternative for vinegar, or other sour ingredients, in the kitchen.
Keeping and Storage
Oude Gueuze is one of those rare beers that store well – for up to 20 years, by many accounts. And even after those long years of storage, this beer will remain crisp and fresh.
Bottle ✔ On Tap ✖
Only available in bottles of 37.5 cl and 75 cl. As this Gueuze is only produced in small volumes, it is not always the easiest beer to track down. Luckily, Anthony Martin’s Drinks export their beers worldwide (as part of the Anthony Martin’s Finest Beer Selection®' marque), so even outside of Belgium, you should be able to lay your hands on this beer.
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