Belgian-style Blonde Ale
96 La Fin du Monde, Unibroue (Canada). 9% ABV (5/08)
Golden amber color with a fine blanket of mousse. Lush aromas of peach-apricot marmalade, honey and cashew brittle follow through on a rich, lively entry. Big, fruity, full body with layers of golden raisin toast, spice and banana crème brûlée and bubblegum spice. Finishes with a long, sweet dried apricot, nut and candied orange peel. A massively delicious beer for all occasions.
92 Bon Secours Blonde Ale, Brasserie Caulier (Belgium). 8% ABV (5/07)
Hazy, bright golden amber color. Complex aromas of light brown sugar, golden raisins and soy. Smooth and supple entry leads to a dryish medium-full body of lemon curd, cilantro, salt and Brazil nut flavors. Finishes with a long, earthy and savory dried fruit and salty sourdough fade. Exotic and inviting—a great choice to serve with roasted pork or blackened chicken.
91 Belgian Blond Abbey Ale, Abbaye de Leffe (Belgium). 6.6% ABV (5/08)
Brilliant, bright golden amber color with a blanketing white head. Dense aromas of orange marmalade, peanut brittle, mossy earth and pastry dough follow through on a rich, frothy entry to a dry-yet-fruity full body with layers of spice, river stones and sourdough. Finishes with a long, tangy nut, sweet orange gum and peach marmalade fade. Rich and flavorful with great drinkability.
89 Abbaye De Saint Martin Blonde, Brasserie De Brunehaut (Belgium). 7% ABV (5/07)
Slightly hazy golden color with a white head. Earthy clay, light molasses and buttered cauliflower aromas. A crisp, frothy entry leads to a dryish, medium body of figs, creamy caramel and roasted carrot flavors. Finishes with dried fruit and cashew fade. Interesting, but perhaps a touch too funky for some.
89 Hoppenbier, Jopen (Holland). 6.8% ABV (5/08)
Hazy old gold color with a persistent, fine foamy head. Vibrant sour yeast, basement, sour cream, sour cherry, bitter orange and sweaty cheese rind aromas follow through on a mellow entry to a dry medium body with interesting notes of tropical fruit cocktail. Finishes with a tart and tangy citrus peel, cheese, clay-like hop and white nut fade. A intriguing food beer with a racy style.
88 Blonde Ale, Cucapa (Mexico). 4.5% ABV (4/07)
Golden amber color. Toast and lemon curd aromas follow through to a refreshing, dryish light-to-medium body with a nice wave of nutty toast, toasted meringue and bittering hops on the finish.
86 Bon Secours Blonde de Noel, Brasserie Caulier (Belgium). 10% ABV (5/07)
Hazy yellow golden color. Golden raisin, bubblegum and candied almond aromas. A round frothy entry leads to an off-dry medium full body of fruity caramel, sweetened dates and salty toasted nut flavors. Finishes with a toffeed nut and delicate spice fade. Very fruity and a relatively sweet—try with cheeses and nuts for dessert.