Jan De Lichte was the leader of a notorious gang of thieves who were Belgium’s equivalent of Robin Hood and his merry men. They stole from and murdered the invading French troops during the War of the Austrian Succession in the 1740’s. He was ultimately captured during the ceasefire in 1748, and later executed by the ‘breaking wheel’. His home town was Aalst, and his exploits are celebrated by the ‘Glass Tower’ brewery with this beer bearing his name.
This was the fourth beer introduced to their range back in May 2005. It is an imperial witbier – a style that is rarely seen, even in Belgium which is the home of witbier.
For those unfamiliar with this style, it a simply Belgium’s version of a wheat beer, often referenced as a ‘white beer’ because of the milky appearance resulting from the use of at least 40% wheat in the malt bill. This particular beer uses barley and wheat as well as oats and buckwheat. And typical for witbier there is coriander and curacao added.
The beer has an early malt sweetness that is somewhat smooth at first, giving way to a citrus flavour and hop bitterness that lightens the body. As it dries out it creates a pleasantly prickly finish.