Tilquin Oude Mûre À l’ancienne (2014 – 2015)

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When people ask you what your favorite beer is, it can often be a tougher question than who you favorite child is.  It all depends on the day, the season, the month, the weather, the time, etc…  However, I can unequovically claim that Tilquin Quetsche is in the top 5 of all time for me.  Tilquin Squared may very well be my favorite non-fruited sour (that or Allagash Coolship Resurgam).  Regardless, this gueuzerie from Belgium has been making sours that are simply delectable.  I’m hoping lightening strikes for a third time with their newly released Mûre, a lambic aged on blackberries.  Let’s run them numbers to find out…

Appearance:  Reddish maroon with some haze to it.  Second pour was much more opaque than the first as more of the schmutz fell into the bottle.  No head to speak of and no lacing as I drank.

Smell:  Classic gueuze and Tilquin funk going on.  Musty oak, sour fruit, and mild acidity.  No heavy hint of blackberry on the sniff – in fact, outside of the beers color, I don’t think I’d say this was a fruited sour on smell alone.

Taste:  Refreshing.  Tart oak up and base gueuze up front followed by stinging lemon sourness.  Not a ton of blackberrIMG_3867y at first sip or even during the mid palate, but you get a quick spray of them on the finish – very subtle.  It’s a little disappointing with the lack of fruit in here, however the taste of this beer is on point.  Cobwebby oak, hot attic, stone fruit, and acidic.  Everything I would want out of a Belgian sour that has a 10 year shelf life.  I will mention that on the second pour, the beer got a little sweeter and had more fruit.  I would recommend rolling this bottle to break up the yeast cake before pouring – the second pour has a bigger tart fruit finish than the first.

The body on this brew is also part of the reason why I like it so much – it’s thinner than balding 30 something’s hair.  It makes it super easy to drink and complements what little fruit I do find on the finish.  The 6.4% ABV is something that I come to expect out of Tilquin and is average to above average for sours of this style.  The carbonation is right where I want it for a fruited sour as it was a little more bubbly than most beers, but again helped with it’s easy drinkability.

Overall:  I enjoyed Tilquin Mûre.  It reminded me a lot of Quetsche only it was a little thinner on the body.  It was as sour as their plum lambic, which I was a big fan of, but the lack of bursting blackbarry was a bit disappointing.  I’d certainly buy it again if I found it on the shelf, but I have had fruited sours with a little be more… well, fruit.  Overall, I’ll give it an A-.  Not a top 5, but still very tasty.

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