Text and photo: Michael
During a recent trip to Bruges, we were fortunate enough to be introduced to Pannepot.
PANNEPOT 2006 “Fishermans Ale”
Brewed by De Struise Brouwers, our first taste of this beer was in Brugs Beertje, a compact, no frills type of pub, but with a seriously huge selection of other beers.
Poured into an unusual (for Belgium) oval shaped Struise Beer glass, it looked appealing well before it was tasted. Dark, almost black body, with a thick creamy beige head. On the nose, to be honest, I can’t remember smelling anything unusual about this beer, but to taste it was fantastic. I’ve seen other write ups on this beer that mention dark sugar and fruits, but for me I sensed Blackcurrant and Liquorice – rather like one of those traditional hard boiled sweets. At 10% abv, on the face of it, it is a strong beer, but the flavours completely and pleasantly disguise the alcohol.
PANNEPØT 2006 “Old Monk’s Ale”
Sampled in De Garre, Bruges, a quaint backstreet pub just off the main square, and on the beer menu as “Pannepot”, at first sight, this was identical to the one we had in Brugs Beertje. However to taste, it seemed more rounded, and the liquorice was less prominent – but still an amazing taste.
Looking at the two bottles, and glasses we had on our table, they looked identical, but closer inspection revealed we had two different beers.
Cue a spot the difference competition, and we eventually realise several differences:
· Spelling Pannepot v PannepØt
· De Struise Brewers Crest (DSB) on one bottle and not the other.
· Border of the label Claret on one bottle, Dark Beige on the other.
· “Old Fisherman’s Ale” on bottle, “ Old Monk’s Ale” on the other
· A lighter coloured head for the “Old Monk’s Ale”
· More prominent liquorice in the “Old Fisherman’s Ale”
The waitress did not realise that there was a difference in the two bottles that she had served, and subsequent internet searches have yielded nothing for the “Old Monk’s Ale”. We did however learn that the “Ø” brew was for the Danish Market, but each one identifies the one with the “Ø” as also being “Old Fisherman’s Ale”. So the “Old Monk’ Ales is a bit of a mystery at the moment.
Eitherway, both are a fantastic beer. Would love to know where it’s commercially available if any one knows.
Additional Photos - “Old Fisherman’s Ale “ v “ Old Monk’s Ale” Bottle
Additional Photo “ Old Fisherman’s Ale” v “Old Monk’s Ale” - Poured