Brouwerij Hof ten Dormaal has quickly become one of my favorite new breweries from Belgium both because of the quality of their beers as well as how they make them. Hof ten Dormaal is a true farmhouse brewery, growing the ingredients they use to brew their beer. In this case, they’re using their own farm grown chicory root.
Chicory, witloof in Flemish, is more commonly known as Belgian Endive. This leafy delicacy was once known as “white” gold because of the high value of this farm product. In the case of this beer, it’s actually the root of the plant that is used. It’s added to the boil 30 minutes from the end. Dogfish Head used to brew a stout using Chicory stout, but replaced it in their seasonal line up this year. Chicory root can also be used as an additive or substitute in/for coffee.
Appearance: Hazy copper, off-white head, great retention.
Aroma: Earthy, spicy, fruity, estery/phenolic
Taste: Pepper, spicy, slightly earthy, sweetish.
Overall Impression: The chicory root adds a nice bit of earthiness and complexity to this farmhouse golden ale. With a medium-long finish, Wit Goud makes great use of chicory root as an adjunct both to create an interesting beer as well as to further integrate their farm products into their brewing products. Hof ten Dormaal continues to put out great farmhouse beers. They’re well worth your time and effort to find and drink.
Available: This small brewery is imported into the US by 12% Imports. Check your local bottle shop to see if they deal with a distributor that works with this importer.