Founded in 1899 by the monks of Konigshoeven, the Trappist abbey called Abdij Maria Toevlucht is located near Klein Zundert in The Netherlands. After reducing their agricultural practices over the last several decades, the monks were looking for a way to help fund their abbey. They decided to join the 8 other Trappist Abbeys brewing beer. They began the process of adding the brewery in October of 2011.
Zundert Trappist Ale was officially released in December of 2013 making it the 9th official Trappist Abbey to join the Authentic Trappist Product (ATP) club. The first bottles released didn’t have the ATP logo, but subsequent releases will have it. The International Trappist Association granted Zundert the right to use it on December 10th, 2013.
(If you’d like to learn more about The Brewing Monks, you can click here to read the first post in my series about monastic brewing).
Aroma: Caramel, cinnamon, milk chocolate, chai, nutmeg.
Taste: malty, caramel, hints of toffee, spicy/peppery finish. Velvety mouthfeel
Overall Impression: Zundert’s first release is a nice beer with some good character and a touch of yeasty spice. This isn’t the most complex of the Trappist beers, but it’s a nice first effort. I’m sure as the brewery develops and the recipe is tweaked and modified, the beer will continue to develop into something unique like the beers of its Trappist brethren. The same comments were often made about Achel’s first beers, but today they’re regarded as some of the finest examples of the Trappist art of brewing. I’m looking forward to tracking the development of the newest member of the brewing monks.
Availability: The Netherlands and Belgium.
Note: Best 5/11/15 (November 5, 2015).
Special thanks go to my beer trading & beer blog friend in Belgium, Belgian Beer Geek, for sending this to me!