Brewed by De Proefbrouwerij
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Lochristi - Hijfte, Belgium


on tap


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RATINGS: 258   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.74/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 225   ABV: 7.5%
Ingredients and techniques from two different areas come together to produce the beer in this bottle. Van Twee (From Two) is the remarkable result of a collaboration between two breweries know for extreme innovation: Bells Brewery of Kalamazoo, MI and De Proef Brouwerij of Lochristi, Belgium. Special emphasis was placed on using ingredients from both Belgium and Michigan in designing this beer. Michigan is renowned for producing sour, dark cherries of superior quality, and a significant quantity of cherry juice was added to the brew. Deep hued Belgian candi sugar adds to the complex flavor of the beer. The sugar used for bottle conditioning came from native Michigan sugar beets. A finishing fermentation with vinous Brettanomyces strain of yeast complements the unique New Zealand hop variety, Nelson Sauvin. The result is broadly a cherry infused mash-up of the porter and dubbel styles, brewed to an original gravity of 1.072 and fermented with multiple strains of yeast. Each ingredient used brings a subtle hint of a varied fruit such as plum/prune from the roasted malts; gooseberry/grape from the hops; pear/banana from the yeast and specialty sugar; and of course cherry. These flavors are wrapped in a rich and complex roasted malt base that imparts flavors reminiscent of chocolate and coffee--much like the famous filled chocolates of Belgium. We hope you enjoy drinking this beer as much as we enjoyed making it for you.

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   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
BBB63 (6557) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - AUG 10, 2012
Corked well aged 750ml bottle and served in my NB Worthy glass: A interesting black film on the bottom of the cork and rim of the bottle makes me worried but it seemed to pour okay. Deep brown russet hue with some reddish highlights topped by a small fading beige head that left spotty lace. The aroma has notes of chocolate covered sour cherries along with a light roast and bready malt notes. Slight winy acidic vapour with little to no brett character even after the time aging. Slight cardboardy oxidation but nothing overly bad. Some strange sugary notes and even a bit of band-aid as it warms. The taste is semi-sweet and soured with a nice restrained balance but there is little outstanding characteristics other than the fruity tones. The hybrid nature of this brew is quite apparent on the palate... a little Belgian Ale, A little porter-ish, very fruity and a little sour. A hodge podge of parts that is better than the whole. I really wished for more brett action here to give the sourness more kick and depth. Also I tad disappointed with how much sweetness does remain. The mouth feel is tad slick and chewy but also a bit under-carbonated for my tastes.

Outside some cardboardy notes it is like this beer has not aged at all. The yeasties seemed to doing nothing to advance this beer or add further depth or complexity. In the end it is a muddle brew that still remained drinkable.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
OldMrCrow (2434) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 27, 2012
Bottle ages a couple of years or so.

Deep red-brown pour with a tan head. Plenty of chocolate and cherry -- unsurprisingly -- on the almost overpowering aroma and in the flavor alike. The comparison to cherry cordials is hard to resist. Hops are quite oxidized in the aroma and the same follows in the flavor. Sweet, alcohol prevalent. Oaky flavors with unmistakable funk from the Brettanomyces, but much sweeter than any brett-laden beer Ive had before. Desserty, but easy enough to drink.

It recalls that other Micihgan beer, the much-sought-after Kuhnhenn raspberry eisbock.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
brokensail (16401) - Dublin, California, USA - FEB 24, 2012
A dark amber color with a little extra dose of brown. Sort of oxidized at this point, but nice cherry and caramel aromas. A bit of brown sugar and toffee, maybe a slight roast. Too much cardboard for my tastes, though. The flavor is similarly old and oxidized. Prunes, plums, and cherries give a decent fruit character and there is a lot of sugary sweetness to it as well. Still cant quite escape the cardboard.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
Quasimodo (217) - chicago, Illinois, USA - FEB 20, 2012
Chocolate, cherry, coffee, banana bread, grape, pancakes and roasted malt. Hints of brandy. Elegant concoction from two wizard brewers. Nice, warming finish that lingers. I expected more tartness from the brett. Reminds me of Ommegang Seduction.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
mnoud (318) - Martinsburg, West Virginia, USA - FEB 9, 2012
750ml bottle in Ommegang glass. Pours dark brown and mostly opaque. Thick foamy tan head dissipates slowly and laces the sides. Aroma is inviting, not overtly "Belgian yeast-y", a little hint of the cherry. Taste is definitely a bit on the sour side. Not overtly "I sucked a lemon" sour but its definitely there, a lack of (possibly) expected Belgian malty sweetness, and a sour aftertaste. Not bad, but not something I am really enjoying.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
kopher (593) - New York, USA - FEB 4, 2012
toasty aroma with dark fruit and chocolate and hay and a slight funk. a bit of alcohol and more cherry as it warms. low carbonation and silky but also a bit gritty. looks like coke with dark beige foamy head. mellow sweetness and slightly dark with alcohol warmth. a delicious treat.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Glouglouburp (6103) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 30, 2012
In short: A mix of sweet chocolaty malts and sweet cherries. Sounds better than it tastes. Good but not very good.
How: Bottle 750ml. Combination of notes from a fresh bottle shared at a tasting and a bottle I drank with a over one year of age on it
The look: Very dark brown body topped by a small beige head
In long: Nose is chocolaty, maraschino cherries, nutty toastiness smells like a smashed Cherry Blossom. Taste is a strong mix of creamy chocolate cake, oaky sourness, uber-sweet maraschino cherries, light notes of vanilla, pineapples-like fruitiness. My notes from a fresh bottles say the flavors were not very cohesive and it felt like if Van Twee was a few few beers mixed together. My aged bottle showed a better cohesiveness of the various flavor elements but the refreshing fruitiness (cherries and pineapples) were more subdued and I was bothered by a high sweetness sensation that I didnt note with a fresh bottle. I didnt find it any better now than when it was fresh, it is just a bit different and I havent changed my score from my paper notes. Everyday I try drink fresh and aged beers and get surprising results and then enter ratings on ratebeer. Forest Gump was right, life is like a box chocolate, in that I dont have a box of chocolate.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
portableparty (2344) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - JAN 20, 2012
Bottle cork shows a stamp that says Bells 01. Pours dark brown black with a nice tight soapy khaki head that dissipates to a foamy thin film and spotty lacing. Aroma is cherries and wood with a chocolate malt and some raisins. Taste is spice cherries and wood with a chocolate malt and raisins. Palate is full well carbonated and chalky dry finish. Really awesome brew with me wanting more as it warms. Want to pick up another bottle for sure!

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
drpimento (3526) - La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA - NOV 13, 2011
Poured this fresh out of the fridge and a little cold. Got a huge, foamy, very frothy, textured light tan head that slowly settled and an amazing amount of very fine lace that totally enclosed the glass. Color is an almost opaque black brown except in the very thinnest part of the glass it seems to be a clear mahoganey. Flavors similar in many ways to nose, but not nearly as good. At first it starts out wonderful with tart cherry flavored dark malt, but then theres a metallic flavor and some other off tastes. Body is good and carbonation started out good but then quickly goes kind of flat. Finish is like flavor ( and, I walked away from the beer for a while, which rounded & smoothed it out, plus seems to have eliminated the metallic part), understated, although heavier in bitterness than anything else. Not bad, not a hug fan. Proly good to cook with.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
rougeau13 (2902) - Richmond, Texas, USA - OCT 30, 2011
Very dark brown with a small, nicely lacing, beige head that fades to a ring quickly. Aroma of cherries, other fruit including sour apple and raisin, chocolate, spice and a little alcohol and sugar. Taste is sweet and sour fruit and sweet malt with some spice and a mild bitterness at the end. The body is medium-full, with very mild carbonation and a substantial dryness.

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