For their latest seasonal, Driftwood decided to bring back a blast from the past, the Cloddhopper Belgian-style dubbel. This malt-rich trappist-style beer is notable because all of the grain used for brewing was grown grown and malted on the Saanich peninsula by artisan maltster Mike Doehnel.
It’s been a few years since I’ve tried this beer, so let’s see how the 2016 version shapes up.
Brewed with malt grown and malted by our friend and artisan maltster, Mike Doehnel. A complex fermentation profile with notes of bubblegum and dry, with a delicate caramel note derived from Belgian dark candi sugar.
Bottle: 650 ml
Recommended glass: Chalice
The beer pours out a deep brown colour, with a generous cream-white head that leaves ample lacing.
The nose is dominated by toasted malt, brown sugar, caramel, and dried fruit, with a spicy character and hints of banana from the Belgian yeast.
The mouthfeel is creamy with medium carbonation and a slightly dry finish—making for a highly-quaffable ale.
Unsurprisingly, the palate is dominated by the warm toasted cereal flavour of the local grain, which is accompanied by the sweet taste of dark dried fruits, brown sugar, and molasses, which comes from the Belgian dark candi sugar. This is all follow by a spicy taste of cloves and pepper from the Belgian yeast.
Overall, this is a fantastic take on a Belgian/trappist-style dubbel, with a special local slant. The recipe seems to have been refined from previous iterations and the beer now has a fuller body and much more well-rounded flavour profile.