The countdown has begun for December 25 and here at Volume by Alcohol we decided to spread the cheer in a more adult fashion, a Beer Advent Calendar. Every day we will count down to December 25 with one unique beer, since we’ll be enjoying these brews on the actual date of the calendar we will post about them on the following day. These will not be extensive beer reviews but more of a snap-shot. Hopefully you will find these helpful and can locate some of the beers we will be discussing at your local bottle shop or pub!
Day 1: Koningshoeven (La Trappe) Dubbel | ABV: 7% | Style: Dubbel
Koningshoeven is more known as La Trappe in the U.S., however we came across this bottle at a local bottle shop, typically you will see the La Trappe labels. Koningshoeven is the actual Trappist monastery whereas La Trappe is the name the monks brew their beer under.
The dubbel poured a ruby, brown color, it’s pretty dark and has a slight haze to it. You can not hold this beer up to a light and see through it. The beer did not pour a large head, it had a small white one when first poured that quickly dissipated. It did keep a small ring of bubbles around the top of the beer for over an hour. The bottle did have a decent amount of yeast sediment in it after pouring, typically dubbels are bottle-fermented so this was to be expected.
Upon smelling the beer for the first time you get lots of raisins and dried fruit along with tons of malt and some caramel. The flavor is a mix of dried fruit (raisins, prunes) mixed with a rich syrup with just a slight hint of soy sauce. It’s tangy, and just a little savory at the same time. There is a background oak flavor which is where we get the soy sauce notes from, it is something you really notice after you take a sip and exhale. There was not much carbonation on this beer, it wasn’t flat it just could use a little more of a carbonated boost.
We do feel that this beer might have been sitting on the shelves of where we got it for awhile, after researching a bit online it does appear that the old Koningshoeven label has not been used in the U.S. for a little while. So our recommendation is to seek out the La Trappe label version for optimal freshness and see if it has a bottled-on date.