I picked a special beer out of my cellar for my 200th beer (in 200 days): The Gouden Carolus “Cuvée van de Keizer Blauw” … the 2007 brewing. This beer is brewed every year on the 24th of February. See this link for what others think of it and a little history behind the brew.
This beer can be “cellared” for up to 10 years … so mine I’ve had for two years … I thought it was time to drink it. (Yes, I bought the 2007 in 2008). In all fairness on the rating, this is a “mish-mash” of different years … although most of the ratings are high for this beer, there is no particular rating for a specific year. I “think” this is a bottle conditioned beer, so the flavor will change from year to year and as you cellar it.
Here’s a picture of my 2007 … I poured it in three glasses (to share with my daughters). I drank the Orval glass and my daughters had a Gouden Carolus glass and an Ommegang glass.
The 11% ABV kind of sneaks up on you … the flavor on this beer was exceptional … I really enjoyed it … when poured, it is that nice ruby color — obviously the head retention won’t be long with this high of an alcohol content. The body and character were right in target for the Belgian Strong ale style — I could easily drink more of these!
Fortunately, I will have the chance to drink at least two more … I also own the 2008 and 2009 releases! (nice dust build-up on my 2008 … hehe)
I definitely look forward to enjoying those in a couple of years!