De Struise Brouwers don't have their own premises. Instead they do their brewing at the facilities of Deca services in Woesten-Vleteren in Belgium. You may not have heard of any of Deca's own beers, and certainly wouldn't go out of your way to find them. Struise's beers, however, are renowned and sought after the World over.
I was lucky enough to meet Carlo, one of the brewers at a Ratebeer gathering in Antwerpen in September 2006. I had been given a bottle of Pannepot the year before and drank it just before going to Belgium. I loved it and gave it a very high score on RateBeer. To my pleasure, Carlo had read my rating and commented on it when I met him.
Carlo was extremely generous at the meeting and gave us all bottles of his beers to take away as well as newly unveiled Struise glasses. Until yesterday I had drank all the beers I had been given except the sour beer Earthmonk.
In view of my ongoing celebrations this week, I thought the time was right to crack it open. I had high hopes and Oh Yes, it's good. No actually it's bloody amazing. It is so drinkable. The sourness is just how I like it; it puckers the mouth but it doen't have that over the top acidity of some Cantillon beers for example. It has great woody notes and hints of chocolate. It is an absolute masterpiece. A beer worthy of its position just outside the top 50 on RateBeer, in fact it should really be higher but a lot of people don't actually get sour beers, just tasting vinegar notes (poor them). It's a beer worthy of marking any celebration, and a beer I will hopefully get to drink more of.
You can read my review here if you wish. My words may not be those of a master critic but my pleasure is there for all to see.