I’ll be the first to admit that Abbey Ale’s are not typically my first choice when head to the store in search of a something new and tasty. However, I have a world of respect for Brewery Vivant, they create quality beer with Belgian tradition and some local love. So regardless of the fact that Abbey Ales stray a bit from my normal style I am always game to try a sampling from Brewery Vivant.
Solitude is a Belgian Dubbel Abbey Ale clocking in at 6% ABV and readily available in canned 4 packs. Solitude is different, at first the brew provides some strong flavors of raisins and prunes but finishes with a distinctly, almost dry, lemony citrus flavor. The brew pours nicely with a dark caramel/amber color and is lightly carbonated giving the beer a very light body that is somewhat refreshing. The Belgian spices are balanced out enough in the beer that the sweetness of the fruit is more noticeable than the that intense Belgian flavor that is so distinct in most Dubbels. Truthfully this beer came off as very sweet to me, as I was drinking this beer I found myself stopping and thinking that this brew almost has a taste similar to that of a desert wine making the beer an interesting option as a stand alone beer but I found myself struggling to find a meal to pair with Solitude and enjoy.
Solitude is one of those beers that is wonderfully crafted and is unique in the world of craft beer. While enjoying the beer and even a day later I can’t think of a beer that’s truly comparable to it, on that alone the brew is worth checking out. For me though ultimately I have to put this beer in the “wonderfully crafted but not my thing” category of brews. If you’re a fan of darker fruits and Belgian style this very well could become a regular in your craft brew rotation.
Sommbeer: Thanks John! I’m trying to learn more about Belgian style beers. So far I have found them to be less than favorable. With a few notable exceptions (Chimay was awesome) they are all high quality but not my style.
John Fahrner Bio:
John resides in Wolverine Lake, MI and is interested in craft beer, the Detroit Red Wings and MSU.
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