The Grimbergen label has been owed by the Heineken Group since taking over the brand in 2008. Alken-Maes was one of the old brewing family names of Belgium, and the produced Grimbergen Abbey Ales for many years.
They are fairly easy to find in Belgium, and further afield, and are always an enjoyable drop. It has been several years since I’d last had an Optimo Bruno (or any Grimbergen for that matter) so time to revisit.
It pours an attractive mahogany colour, with lots of sticky lacing on the glass. The aroma is a deep, rich combination of sweet caramel, burnt sugar, overripe dark stone fruits, hints of chocolate and a slightly herbaceous hint.
The flavour is equally rich and rewarding, with all the elements above and the addition of a little bite from roasted malts and a slight bitterness on the finish.