4 friends in three different time zones split a beer year (drinking a different beer every day). Once a week, we use google hangouts to have a conversation about the same beer as a group. We cycle through 2 beer styles a month (2 weeks per style).
Join us as we connect, learn and explore the world of beer.
January 4: Karl and the Tale of the Ommegang Hennepin
The restaurant and tasting room in Cooperstown, NY
As the Festival of the Saison continues here on the blog,
the latest brewdo I do do happens to hail from the same region of the world as the gentleman writing this post. Ommegang brewery originally started as a husband and wife team who wanted
to import Belgian beers to the states. Eventually importing gave way to brewing
their own batches and Ommegang, now a part of the Belgian company responsible
for Duvel, has been producing quality beers since 1997 from its farmhouse
located near the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. I’ve always had a
soft spot in my heart for Ommegang, and had the pleasure of visiting the
brewery on one of my recent trips home. I highly recommend the trip, and the
aroma of well-crafted beer that greets you when you reach the grounds and step
out of your auto is an aromatic festivus for beer lovers.
The happy couple
Of the many quality bottles that Ommegang releases, the
Hennepin may be their most revered. A 7.7% farmhouse-style saison, it is truly
a magnificent brew. A cloudy, golden liquid is topped by a seemingly endless
creamy white head that completely fills the Duvel glass this saison is poured
into. The large glass allows the aromas to happily dance about, with smells of
pears, orange peel, lemon and Belgian yeast tickling the nostrils. The taste
offers equal complexity to the bouquets, sharing many similarities to a well
made hefeweizen. There are some citrus notes, some banana, some cloves, but
this is then balanced out by some hop flavor and the taste of rye bread. It is
slightly tart, but by no means sour, and the tartness just adds to the balance
of complex flavors. It is extremely effervescent, and it lingers on your tongue
just long enough to encourage you to have another sip. I easily finish off the
750ml bottle on my own, which then leads to some inexplicable mistakes by my
defenders in FIFA. Many people (I being a member of this crowd) cite this beer
as the “saison that lead me to enjoy saisons” and if you enjoy good hefes, or
Belgian tripels, I would give this beer a shot. It may win you over as well.