5 Stars, De Struise Brouwers, Strong Ale

Rio Reserva – 2011 by De Struise Brouwers

Brewed in 2011, bottled in 2014, drank in 2015, best before 2019. “Golden quad” aged in 1 year in wine barrels then racked to bourbon barrels.

Pours brown but when held to the light turns ruby red-brown (trust me that’s a thing). Plenty of beige head; dissipated quickly. Aroma of red wine, oak, vanilla, toffee, fruit sweetness, enough alcohol to let you know it’s there. No sour notes but catching whiffs reminiscent of Flanders Red. One sip dispelles any thought of a Flanders. Strong flavor of oak, vanilla, bourbon, complex malt flavors. This is a thick beer with a pronounced alcohol punch. Finishes is very pleasant with lingering alcohol, some bitterness and fruit flavors.

I am going to call this one a Belgian strong for lack of a better category. Very unique, I really like this beer and I think this it could be even better with some more time, good thing I have another.

5 stars.