The very first guest review. Seems my cry for help was heard by Belgian beer lovers, so without further ado ...
Text and photo: Stonch, a Londoner and a beer lover
Website/ blog: Stonch's Beer Blog
About the beer: Liefmans Goudenband is a current favourite. It's a Flemish brown ale that is fantasically drinkable but pretty dangerous at 8% ABV. The bottle conditioning allows the beer to mature and evolve if laid down in a cellar. The same brewery is perhaps more famous for its fruit beers, and in particular their Kriekbier, which is quite possibly Belgium's finest. Unusually, Liefmans base their fruity offerings not on a lambic or witbier base, but instead on a mature brown ale. This base beer is sold as Goudenband.
Having tried the beer at various ages, it seems to peak at about five years old, although it'd be interesting to see what happens to this complex and satisfying ale after decades in the bottle.
This beautiful brewery in Oudenaarde, East Flanders was, from the mid-70s to the mid-80s, owned by solid (but rather less glamorous) Sunderland brewer Vaux.