Dageraad Blonde: Too complex for words

I’ve seen their beers here and there but have never actually tried them. Doing a bit of research about Dageraad Brewing, I learned that the founder was a fan of Belgian beer and wanted to brew a little bit of Belgium right here in the Lower Mainland.

Belgian beers are the epitome of extremes with no singular prototypical beverage on tap. They create simple clean lagers and pilers, all the way up to super complex tripels, and everything in between. They are the consummate experimenters, with their lambic beers (open fermenting with wild yeasts) being a prime example of that.

With that in mind I dropped into their taproom in the Burnaby City area to try out something a little bit different. The taproom, attached to the brewery, is simple and roomy, with space upstairs and down. It’s a busy little place that is quite central to businesses, close to Simon Fraser University, and just on the outskirts of the residential area.

Checking out the options I really didn’t know which direction to go as they all looked super interesting. Asking the bar gal for her recommendation, she pointed me to the Blonde…. Blonde it is!

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The strong spice fragrance was blended with floral fruity tones – very welcoming.

My first taste was an absolute attack on the senses (in a good way though). It felt smooth in the mouth, hitting a bunch of different flavour notes. The tartness was infused with spices, fruits, and a subtle nuttiness. Even though they call it a dry ale, it seemed to have a hint of sweetness to it.

Once that initial rush of flavour subsided, the alcohol hit is quite noticeable, but almost necessary. This beer was more tart than bitter, which was almost confusing.

Complex. That is really the only word that properly explains it. There is so much going on in that glass, that you pick up something different with those first few sips.

Don’t be fooled as I was with the light colour of the beer. It has an extraordinarily rich, complicated flavour that is quite deceptive at a glance.

Picking a food combination with a beer like this is a bit challenging. You’ll want to go at opposite ends of the spectrum. It would go wonderfully with cheese or a charcuterie board – I don’t think there’s any beer that doesn’t. For a main course, I might have this with something that has backbone, maybe duck, prime rib, or a healthy rack of lamb.

All that to say, this is a well crafted, award winning beer and worthy of your shekels. Good job.

Well that’s it for now, gonna go quench that panda sized thirst… cheers eh!

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