Two-for-One Instant Beer Review: Van Steenberge Monk’s Café Flemish Sour Red Ale vs Sixpoint Gemin-IPA


HAVEN’T HEARD FROM YOU IN A WHILE. I’ve been in Las Vegas, and subsequently recovering.

THAT’S FAIR. HOW WAS IT? As ridiculous as you might imagine, but we all managed to avoid incarceration.

I LOOK FORWARD TO ALL THE TAWDRY DETAILS. Have no fear, there is a full report forthcoming.

OH LORD. WHAT ARE YOU DRINKING TODAY? The Monk’s Café Flemish Sour Red Ale from the Van Steenberge Brewery in Belgium. The beer was originally brewed for Monk’s Café in Philly by the Van Steenberges.

WHERE ARE YOU? Dexter’s, of course. (Click on the link to check out their new and improved website!)

OF COURSE. Hey, I haven’t been here for weeks.

HOW’S THE BEER? It’s okay. I don’t think I’m in the mood for a sour ale at the moment, so it’s tough for me to gauge. The beer is medium-bodied with a rich, red color that is almost wine-like, but the flavor is a bit more fruity than I typically enjoy–the maltiness of the ale is what saves it for me.

WOULD YOU RECOMMEND IT? Of course. I think it’s a good beer; I just happen to prefer something hoppy and big-tasting over a beer that tastes like grape juice.

SPEAKING OF HOPPY, DID YOU JUST ORDER ANOTHER BEER? Yup. I decided to follow the sour ale with something more to my specific liking: Sixpoint‘s Gemin-IPA. It’s a big-ass, 10.20% double IPA. Nick said I’d better have a wee bit since they’re almost out. Needless to say, I did not need much convincing.

DON’T YOU HAVE TO WORK TONIGHT? That does not concern you, sir.

CONSIDER MY TRAP SHUT. There’s a good boy.

YOUR VERDICT ON BEER NUMBER TWO? It’s basically awesome: a good, full-bodied double IPA that sticks to the back of your throat. The nose has a pleasant grapefruity quality, and its coloring is an inviting pale amber. I could drink this beer all day.

WELL, UNTIL YOU BLACKED OUT AND TURNED INTO A PUDDLE AFTER, LIKE, THREE OF THEM. Touché, Voice Inside My Head. I don’t know if I’d survive past three or four of these babies.

DEEP THOUGHTS? After spending a long weekend in Vegas where I was surrounded by the lowest common denominator of beer selections (but perhaps I was in the wrong places), it’s good to be back in Wisconsin where the best beer on tap isn’t Stella Artois. I am happy that I gave the sour ale a go, and I continue to be wowed by Sixpoint. I’m looking forward to tasting more of their delicious wares as time (and my liver) allows.