While taking a break from the mobs of crazy xmas shoppers last night, Mad Dog Johnny and I stopped in the Beer Bistro for a couple of pints. The Beer Bistro features a menu of some 200+ microbrews and select imports from all countries of the world, as well as representing all styles of beer. Upon arriving, we noticed a coaster depicting a pink elephant and advertising the subject of today's entry, a Belgian oddity called Delirium Tremens.
As we looked over the coaster, we found this quote from Stuart A. Kallen, who apparently ranked this one #1 in his "50 Greatest Beers in the World":
The name Delirium Tremens speaks for itself. Words simply cannot describe the intricate flavour of this beer - but that won't stop me from trying. The colour is golden and the head is creamy and light. The first sip warms my troat and belly like an ols woodstove does a log cabin. It's lightly hopped and surprisingly malty for such an airy, sunshiny beer. The aftertaste is fruity, almost cherry. A warming alcoholic glow works its way down the throat to the stomach. This beer must be sipped slowly so you can revel in each sweet drop. Delirium Tremens has a big body, a rich mouth feel and a long sweet aftertaste.
We ordered up two bottles and noticed that the "warming alcoholic glow" likely stems from this beer's rather heavy 8.7% abv. The beer is served with a narrow-mouthed glass that more resembles a brandy snifter than what would normally have beer served in, and is covered in pink elephants and the Delirium Tremens name. We poured out the beers and noticed the beer does indeed have a golden, if slightly cloudy appearance with a thick creamy head. There were no sea monkeys nor odd scent from the beer, so we tipped our glasses and drank.
The flavour is rather weak, with a strong alcoholic burn on the palate that follows the beer down your gullet and warms the stomach. Mad Dog Johnny remarked the beer tasted "mild, with a hint of ass." Charming. As we drank further, the "hint of ass" seemed to overpower the mild flavour and turned what seemed like an OK brew into another Belgian cup of misery. Halfway through his, Johnny made a face of disgust, and remarked "I don't like it" before chugging the rest down just to get rid of it. I drank the rest of mine at a normal pace, but really cannot say I enjoyed the experience much. It seemed to me that this was just another poor example of brewing from a country that seems to have an extremely overrated history of beer making altogether.
In closing, Mad Dog Johnny summed up his experience as thus:
"Upon completion of said Belsh beer, I found it undeniably justified to approach the bar with the empty bottle in my hand, and bust it over the head of the asspipe that had the nerve to serve it to me!"
Delirium Tremens Final Score:
Mad Dog Johnny - 2/10
Myself - 3/10
I should add that I initially scored this a 5/10, however as the flavour and alcohol taste grew on me, I reduced my feelings accordingly. Perhaps this review will finally put an end to the ridiculous claims that Belgium is some kind of epicentre of beer brewing. In my opinion, the only people who could make such an idiot statement are pretentious morons who really have no clue what good beer tastes like to begin with!