One Of Our Favourite Beers - Belgian Beer

Today in Belgium there are 125 breweries which are now producing around 500 different types of Belgian Beer. The actual making of beer in this European country dates back to the Middle Ages when it was first being produced in monasteries and today remains the country with the most varieties of beer that one can drink.

The alcohol content of these beers is much higher than many other varieties from around Europe and some have a content as high as between 6 and 8 per cent. The reason for this being that a law was brought into force which prohibited the sales of spirits in public houses. At the time beer was classified as being a spirit and to get round this law breweries increased the alcohol content in them. However, this law was then lifted in 1983.

As mentioned there are around 500 different types of Belgian beer one can drink today and they fall into a number of different categories, below we take a look at what these are.

Trappist Beer - Only a beer where the brewing process has been overseen or carried out by the Trappist monks living in one of 6 monasteries in Belgium can be classified as this type of beer. Each bottle of beer after it has been produced will carry on it the Trappist Product label that clearly identifies that the monastery where it has been brewed have complied with particular laws that are laid down by the International Trappist Association.

Lambic Beer - Is a very unique beer to Belgium and wild yeasts grown in abundance near Brussels are used in its fermentation process. The actual time that it takes for this beer to ferment is considerably longer than many others. Some forms of this beer the fermentation process lasts between 3 and 6 months and others it as long as 2 to 3 years.

The fermentation process used to make this type of Belgian beer provides it with a very distinctive flavor and is not to everyone's tastes. The problem is that the beer can taste dry, cidery and vinous and this results in a sour aftertaste when drunk.

Fruit Beers - These beers are a variation of the Lambic beers and are made through adding either fresh fruit or fruit concentrate to the Lambic. The most commonly produced one is known as Kriek which is made using cherries but there are plenty of others made using fruits such as peaches, blackcurrants or raspberries. The fruit when added to the Lambic beer causes a second fermentation process to take place in the beer.

White Beer - This is the final Belgian beer we are going to be looking at and is made with wheat hops and also contains spices. Most of these beers are generally made using orange peel and coriander in them but dependent upon the brewing method used and what ingredients are included within the process the various different types of white beer have their own distinctive flavors.

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About The Author, Patrick Anthony
It is quite easy to see how belgian beer is so loved amongst beer and ale lovers throughout the world. Belgian fruit beer as mentioned above is also loved however it can be a very aquired taste.