Semi-final time – France and Belgium. Based on beer alone, I know why my preferences lie (Belgium)! I’m off today, so I’m actually getting to enjoy the beers during the game rather than afterwards with the highlights!
Mandatory “New England IPA” Facts
- Untappd Rating: 3.83 (at time of writing)
- Country of Origin: France
- Brewery: Popihn Brasserie
- ABV: 6.7%
- IBU: 55
- Style: New England IPA
- Serving: Bottle, 330ml
New England IPAs are my “go-to” style of beer. With French beers overall performing poorly so far throughout “Dr Beer’s The Beer World Cup”, when I found a beer from France labelled as a NEIPA, I couldn’t not buy it! If a French is going to win me over – it will definitely be this one!
The label is plain with an image of a deserted wasteland. It pours a pale, hazy yellow, slightly lighter than I expected. A moderate bubbly sparkling white foam head is formed. It smells like a great NEIPA with a light citrus scent. The taste however, although nice, is slightly flat. It starts with a boozy warmth which then washes into a citrus bitterness. I feel that if I was using a remote control to alter this beer, the aromas really punch through, but then I’ve turned the volume down to single digits for sampling.
Rating: 3.0/5. This is definitely the best French beer I’ve had – hands down. It’s enjoyable, but if I compare it to any other NEIPAs that I’ve enjoyed from UK breweries, this isn’t even close.
Mandatory “Bersalis Tripel” Facts
- Untappd Rating: 3.60 (at time of writing)
- Country of Origin: Belgian
- ABV: 9.5%
- IBU: 14
- Style: Triple
- Serving: Bottle, 330ml
Another Belgian ale for another Belgian game. It pours as a mid-golden colour that has of both transparency, with a reflective look when staring at the glass, but also a slightly turbid appearance, meaning that I cannot see any of the screen when looking straight through the glass. A light bright white foam head sits aloft of the beer, maintaining the height throughout the entire drink. Not much comes on the nose, other than the characteristic scent I’ve become accustomed to whilst drinking plenty of Belgian beers throughout my World Cup of Beer! If I had to describe it in one word, I would describe it as a “ boozy pea”. If you take a deep sniff, the alcohol warmth is felt on the eyes! On sampling, a crisp, clean flavour comes through, though unlike lagers, this flavour is then developed on. Whist maintaining an increadibly luxurious mouthfeel, silky smooth in texture, a slightly funky flavour is noted. This funky note isn’t overwhelming and before it gets too much, a light bitterness finishes the beer. Usually a moderate warmth finishes these beers as they approach the 10% ABV, but this is surprisingly mild despite the beer’s strength.
Rating: 3.0/5. Certainly not the best Belgian beer that I’ve had, but still characterises the key flavours that I associate from one of the best beer nations in the world.
Football: France had a very, very clever game. It was an impressive display of defensive work, absorbing Belgian pressure for large spells of the game following scoring the only goal of the game. Beers though – it was a close match up, being a draw, which I am shocked at! I thought the Belgians were going to win both the football AND my beer competition.