Hello fellow beer lovers! I’ve had a productive week so far – been busy at work during the daytime, and at night I’ve found new and exciting beers! This time I have a double header, both from the Vedett range. Their beer is a produced at the same brewery that brew Duvel Duvel beers, Brouwerjt Duvel Moortgat – of which I am a huge fan. There are three beers in Vedett’s range, but I could only find two of them in my local supermarket, The Extraordinary IPA and the Extra Blonde.
I had previously tried a Vedett beer whilst on a weekend break to Edinburgh nearly a year ago, but this is before I started to record my beer adventures via the untappd app. As a result, all I could remember was the general name “Vedett” and that it was “good”. By having the untappd app, I’ve been able to keep a track of what my likes and dislikes are, seek out future consumptions and speak to other beer lovers to find out their recommendations.
Putting this name on the front of your bottle is bold. The design of the bottle is really interesting – the shape has a peculiar design, atypical from the typical bottles that I have come accustomed to. It has a “double bubble” neck design, which is striking – then I noticed that it was identical to Duvel! This prompted me to perform a quick google, at which point I found out about the common brewery site shared between Duvel and Vedett brewers!
The bottle, though nice with its tri-colour background and bold text, seems deceptively simple. It’s only upon further inspection that you notice more intricate features. Firstly, in the midline of the bottle, there is a red saw-like logo with an animal in it – that’s because each beer has its very own mascot! The Extraordinary IPA’s mascot is the walrus. Then in the bottom left hand corner of the label, a small thermometer is in situ, stating the recommended temperature they suggest serving the beer at, in this instance 6°C (a nice touch). At 5.5% ABV, it is slighter stronger than a typical session IPA, but not overwhelmingly strong. I took the chilled bottle and popped the cap, which not only had Vedett labelled on it, it also had the beer name itself around the outer aspects.
I poured the amber coloured IPA into one of my favourite beer glasses and placed it aside for a moment, the white head settles after about a minute. On first sip, a bitterness was evident, which was strange as I‘m use to the bitterness coming at the end of an IPA. A sweetness, reminiscent of caramel then comes through, with some non-specific fruit notes, prior to a bitterness returning once again.
Rating: 2.75/5. Extraordinary IPA for me was not extra-ordinary, but certainly complex. I would happily have this again and I think that this may be a beer that develops with the more bottles you consume – as you learn and appreciate all the flavours present.
A couple of major differences between the two beers include the following;
- The mascot for this beer is the penguin!
- Recommended serving temperature is 3°C
- ABV slightly weaker at 5.2%
The beer pours a light hay colour which is hardly surprisingly given that it is a blonde beer. The flavour, like the previous IPA, is also very complex. I am use to lagers being non-descript, light and smooth. This is all of these things, but a subtle vanilla floats in the background which makes a surprising, but great addition. With a fine mix of hops and malt notes, it feels well balanced without an overly demanding flavour. It tastes like a fine Italian lager, but almost taken to the next level. This will certainly be enjoyed again.
Rating: 3.75/5. Extra Blond is a great beer that I think is going to revolutionise the way I see lagers. Other beers like these better start pushing the flavours to@ new levels, because Vedett have easily proven that this can be done. Complexity that other breweries haven’t been able to achieve is consistent across multiple Vedett brews.
Unfortunately, I have not been able to find the Extra White (the third Vedett variety) – I’m on the hunt for it locally. I’m impressed with these Belgian beers and will happily consume again. I hope to share my thoughts of this beer with you soon, just a heads up….. the Extra White mascot is a polar bear!