smcd (366) - USA - MAR 8, 2007
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark brown, slightly hazy with a big, off-white head that dissipates quickly. A huge aroma ... hints of sour and perfume inviting the adventurous ... nutty, fruity overtones with hints of wood-aged sours balancing the deeply complex sweetnesses one discovers as this one warms up. Full, round, soft body that lingers wonderfully for a few seconds and is gone. This was a wonderful surprise.
Rastacouere (6166) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - FEB 19, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Reddish, deep brown body with quickly fading head. Slow going carbonation. A vital, penetrating aroma, nuanced with perfumey notions. Expressive esters bring a plethora of fruits, while spicy developments are drowned in the beefy chocolate scents. Those original, idiosyncratic flavours are translated in mouth to form a shining example of a beer that evolves during the same sip. From the initial fruity, vinous, berry-like profile, it quickly steps into deeper malt territories, feeding the drinker’s soul with potent chocolate splashes. Its heavy sweetness is thankfully accompanied by the fitting full and rounded body (despite barrel-aging) that forces one to maintain a respectful, slow drinking pace. Moreover, that sweetness drinks into the woody acidity to find an equilibrium that avoids any cloying territory. Yep, can only echo Martin’s comments. This is to Flemish Sours what Pannepot is to beefy dark belgian strong ales. How the experiments must have been pointy and masterfully handled to come up with something like that, both inspired by the tradition and evolving further is a testament to the brewers’ art and however much we praise them, I can only imagine how the fun and discoveries they’ve made on their way to this Earthmonk must remain their grandest reward.
Enjoyit (3734) - Vadum, DENMARK - FEB 19, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Deep amber of color, no head. A very strange aroma currant, earth(monk), cola and cinnamon. In taste currants and other black beeries. I would love to taste this one more time, at least.
duff (5484) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - FEB 16, 2007
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle, cheers Carlo! This was some beer. Poors a menacing deep brown colour. Not much in the way of carbonation. Aroma is sour, woody, with some vinous notes, like a good merlot or perhaps a slightly wild pinot noir. Cherry notes also spotted. Mouthfeel is quite phenominal. Lots of juicy acidity, mixed with subtle oak and vinous qualities. Its rich, and full bodied, but not over the top at all. Unbelievably well balanced. Great beer.
elektronikfagtekniker (891) - kbh, DENMARK - FEB 14, 2007
2.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 8/20
UPDATED: NOV 19, 2007 bottle. extreemly dark red color. no head. deep taste of berrys. very sweet. tiny sourness. not my bag, baby.
bager (2120) - Copenhagen N, DENMARK - FEB 14, 2007
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottled. Dark brown coloured with almost no head. WOW! Fruity with notes of balsamico, vinegar, currant, cirtus, cinnamon and Theis’ bike glue. Great complexity and a very good balance between sweet and sour.
kepano (253) - Los Angeles, California, USA - FEB 11, 2007
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Last May I was driving through the beautiful Belgian countryside, finally gazing upon the hop fields of Poperinge and the Westvleteren abbey, scenes I had dreamt about since my first few beers. Little did I know that my casual visit of the nearby De Struise brewers would be such an eye-opening experience. In the company of Carlo and Urbain, I had my first taste of the debuting Earthmonk, a cask-sample elegantly tapped and deliciously satisfying. A few months later, two bottles arrived in the mail, a generous donation that I was impatient to sample. The long maturation and bottle-conditioning were certain to yield the polish I had found in Pannepot and De Struise’s other excellent efforts. In appearance this Flemish Sour was unusually dark, a peat black hue glinting with deep ruddy highlights and topped of a ballooning off-white froth. Rich vinous tones erupted immediately, enhanced by copious oak and vanillin, and an intense licorice fragrance. The voluminous nose is decidedly unique and mouth-watering, sharing the qualities of ripe cherries, brown sugar, apple, milk and the overarching resonance of fresh mineral water. Sour at the offset, the flavor shifts through a gamut of fruity and malty notes, initially emphasizing juicy cherries, Granny Smith apples, wild strawberries and cola. Woodiness prevails just a moment later, accompanied by earthy brown sugar, leather and a hint of Balsamic vinegar. Finishing with a slight metallic tone, the aftertaste develops a remarkable chocolate and hazelnut aspect that I’ve never seen before in the style. The obvious lack of carbonation is unfortunate but creates a rather fertile ground for the complexity of this brew to evolve. Earthmonk has changed since its days in the barrel, on one hand I regret the eminent Speculoos and brown sugar flavors that I had loved, on the other, I find the beer more intricate and mature, more sour and empowered. I can only see this brew improving, especially as I assume the good fellows at De Struise will have their refermentation well in hand next time around.
anders37 (21960) - Malmö, SWEDEN - FEB 11, 2007
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle. Pours a dark brown color with a small off-white head. Sour tasrt malty aroma with some vinous hints. Malty tasrt sour flavor with some earthy hints and hints of wood. Has a drytart finish with some vinous hints in th e aftertaste. Very nice.
Theis (14963) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - FEB 11, 2007
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle - First newbie tasting club - I brought it. Brwon (red glow) - small offwhite head. This is intense !! Balsamic vinegar, rubber glue, earthy, wood, cinnamon, currants. Very complex - I LOVE IT...
joergen (25383) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - FEB 7, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Clear brown coloured with a beige head.
Aroma of wood, red wine, vinegar, fruits and spices.
Flavour of fruits, red wine, vinegar and fruits.