Sometimes breweries put names to their beers that somewhat overstate the 'street-cred' of the beer. Well that isn’t the case with this beer.
The Het Anker brewery is in the town of Mechelen, sort of between Antwerp and Brussels. The closer you get to the region, the more this beer becomes a staple in the cafes and bars. Across the country, it is not unusual to see a Gouden Carolus beer on a beer menu, and chances are if there is only one it will be this beer.
It has a slightly sweet, dark malt body with flavours of caramel, brown sugar, raisins, plums, licorice, some herbal notes and a spicy yeast. All these flavours somehow meld so that no one characteristic is overly dominant. It really has a lovely balance.
There is very little sign of the alcohol, save a little warmth to the dry, spicy and slightly bitter aftertaste.
This beer has been brewed to the same recipe since it was first released back in 1962. And for that reason alone, it deserves the name ‘Classic’.