With the exception of Stella Artois, I don’t think I’ve ever had a
Belgian lager before Leute Bokbier. Though whether this truly is a lager
is up for debate as it’s brewed in the doppelbock style, but uses ale
yeast. Taste-wise it’s closer to a dubbel, but any way you slice it,
it’s still a decent beer in the end.
Appearance: Dark mahogany/cranberry hue. Opaque with no visible
carbonation. Forms a large, ivory, frothy head that retains and laces
Smell: Fairly mild nose with sweet malty scents, but otherwise it has a "generic" Belgian dark ale aroma.
Taste: I’ve noticed over the years that certain beers will have a
distinct flavor at first, but it will fade away quickly. Leute Bokbier
is one of them as it has the classic doppelbock flavor in the first swig
or two, but then tastes like any other Belgian dubbel or strong dark
ale. It begins with that strong bready sweetness from the malts,
followed by a bit of toffee or caramel in the middle. Light bitterness
on the backend plus some alcohol warmth and accompanying taste.
But as I drink on the flavors commonly found in a doppelbock fade away
and the palate becomes more familiar. The malty sweetness becomes more
of a general fruity sweetness, but without a lot of complexity or
subtlety. The trademark Belgian yeast taste makes itself known on the
end of every sip making the beer seem a bit faux. That’s not to say it’s
flawed, it’s plenty flavorful and enjoyable throughout.
Drinkability: If I were drinking Leute Bokbier blind I’d probably peg it
as an ale as it does not have the fizzy quality often found in lagers
(even doppelbocks). The mouthfeel is on the thicker side, but it’s soft
and smooth and goes down easily. The aftertaste is minimal and the
alcohol gives it weight, but not sheer density, even at 7.5% ABV.