Why we're here...

Beer culture is coming of age. At any store, restaurant, bar, or friend's house you can now find at least a few good brews. In fact, there seem to be so many new beers, breweries and bars it's difficult to separate the good, the bad, and the mediocre.

If you're going spend $10 on one beer, what should you buy? If you're going to drive 2 hours to check out a brewery, what's worth your time? If you're going to plan a Friday night, what has a good selection and friendly atmosphere? We're here to help you answer these questions.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Hoogstraten Poorter

Hoogstraten Poorter is a Baltic Porter by the Sterkens Brewery in Meer, Belgium. Meer is a sort of suburb or borough of the larger town of Hoogstraten. Poorter is actually a play on words. Poorter is an old Beligum term for citizen, or someone who lives within the city walls.

My guess is that the name is a tongue in cheek reference that the brewery is located in Meer whose citizens, a few hundred years ago, were probably not allowed to live in Hoogstraten, and thus were not poorters.

A friend gave this to me, but he picked it up somewhere in San Jose. It has an ABV of 6.5%.

The beer pours a dark brownish red, with a froth, big bubbled head that leaves rings of lacings. The aroma is subtle with smooth caramel malts, and hints of dark fruits. The taste is a subtle mix of caramel malts, nuttieness, hints of dark fruit and an earthy hop finish. There are hints of the Belgian yeast funk, but its mild enough to be a pleasant compliment. The mouthfeel is smooth, medium bodied with light to moderate carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall I liked this beer. There is a smoothness and body to it that are unqiue to other porters. The flavors are very subtle and lack the hints of smoke or chocolate found in many porters. It is very drinkable. It is definitely a differnet style of porter, but keeps to the basics. If you like porters this is a Must Have It, but if you're not just give it a try if you find it.

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