Tag Archive: La Rulles

Rulles: Tilquin: Stout Rullquin (Belgium: Sour Ale: 7% ABV)

Visual: Very dark brown to black. Fizzy. Inch of beige head.

Nose: Fresh apples. Bitter cocoa. Brown bread. Malt chocolate drinks. Dry white wine. White grapes.

Body: Tart apples. White wine. White grape juice. Fizzy. Raisins. Madeira cake. Fizzy cola bottle sweets. Slight creamy character. Pear.

Finish: Chocolate liqueur. Lemon on pancakes. Apple juice. Cherries. Madeira cake. Banana yogurt. Cherry coke. Charring. Brown bread. Pear drops.

Conclusion: This is more dominated by the lambic than I ever imagined it would be. Only one eighth of this is lambic. It seems a little lambic goes a heck of along way! Visually this seems very stout heavy, albeit one that pours a bit quicker than the usual viscous beasts do. Taste wise though it is tart and dry white wine at the front, mixed with fresh apples and sour grapes that are layered over the darker centre.

The darker notes are never hidden, but generally they play second fiddle to the tarter notes. There are chocolate touched, such as you would expect from a stout, but more than that are the dry raisin notes and the madeira cake elements. It is still fairly dry, but darker and sweeter that those first impressions. The stout like elements are biding their time, coming out more to play late on, developing into a definite presence in the dry, slightly spicy and dark fruit filled finish.

Time and warmth allows a slightly better balance between the two to come out- though nothing seems to save the muted aroma up front. It still feels fresh, pushing pear drop notes and such, but now the darker – though still tart – notes feels spread throughout the whole beer rather than being just hidden at the back. Cherry notes, tart and fresh, mixed with chewy cola bottle fizzy notes.

It ends up a sour but balanced beer mixing tart fresh to dark fruit character. It takes that almost holographic complexity you get with sour beers and matches to a dry, spicy solid core and chocolate liqueur streaks. It is not a must have, but these lambic and something else mixes stand out as a bit different and this one is good enough that it is worth a try for that.

Background: This was another one bought in the big batch of sours I grabbed a couple of weeks ago, and definitely is the most unusual of them. I don’t see much De Rulles stuff in the UK, so that was a big plus – add into that, that this is seven eighths De Rulles Brune and one eighth one year old lambic to make a sour stout kind of thing and they definitely had my interest. So, another one grabbed from Independent Spirit, using a glass given by my sister – replacing my one of that type of glass that I accidentally broke. Many thanks craft beer sis! Put on some Ramones for background music. Not my favourite punk band, but still good for a listen and definitely respect for the influence they have had.


La Rulles: Triple (Belgium: Abbey Tripel: 8.4% ABV)

Visual: Clear banana to gold, thin layer of smooth off white head.

Nose: Wheat, carrot and coriander. Barley husks. Light bitterness. Pepper. Some red berries, maybe raspberry ripple mixed with strawberries.

Body: Very smooth. Gingerbread and bitterness. Watermelon. Digestive biscuits with bits of red fruit.  A slight custard cream centres for the sweetness. Raspberry touches and some smooth milk.  Gooseberry and passion fruit after a while drinking.

Finish:  Dry wheat and bitterness. Dry wine feel. Lots of bitterness stays. Touch of cream.  While not complex the finish sure hangs around.

Conclusion:  We all have a rough idea what to expert from a tripel style beer right? Maybe sweet for the newer styles, wheat will probably come into it, the usual.  So, did any of you put raspberry in the expected flavours list, cos I sure as hell didn’t, yet here it comes in a main body that shocked the hell out of me.

So yes a fruity tripel, full bodied and far less sweet than a lot of the recent takes on the style all leading into a distinctly dry finish.  In fact most of the beer is that touch drier than expected.

A very exciting range of flavours, yet crisp and dry. This is supremely drinkable and never dull. If not for the abv it would session magnificently, with that long bitter finish really making a nice pause between sips,

Frankly it is quite astonishingly good, with oddities like the dry wine feel of the finish and the flavour all part of a fantastically made package.

Background: Rulles have a good rep, and I’ve enjoyed my previous encounters with them. This bottle was picked up from Bacchus Cornelius in Brugge, where it had just turned up that day.  Due its size and potent abv this bottle was shared with my friend and co taster Will who offered some suggestions for this write up – many thanks.

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