Charles Nouwen tells us about... Leffe Radieuse
What is it that gives Leffe Radieuse that very specific taste? What’s the secret behind those delicate traces of citrus fruit and coriander seeds? The Leffe abbey’s age-old know-know is undoubtedly part of it, but that’s not all…
Leffe Radieuse (Radiant) certainly does its name justice! This resplendent, amber and bronze coloured top-fermented beer comes with a rich, earthy bouquet and a warm, lingering aftertaste. Its zesty flavour is balanced out by fruity, spicy hints of orange rind, coriander seeds and roasted malt.
An exotic flavour
In the early 15th century, when trade routes to India were established, Europe discovered a range of new spices. Brewers were excited to develop new flavours with them, and they started experimenting with these still unfamiliar ingredients, expanding their taste horizons. Coriander and orange rind soon became their new favourite spices, which offered the beer a refreshing citrus flavour. And it’s no coincidence that coriander and beer complement each other so perfectly, as hops and coriander share some of the same aromatic components (such as Linalool, for example).
An epicurean delight
Deliciously refined, Leffe Radieuse’s exquisite complexity will provide an element of surprise. Its remarkable flavour is full of contradiction, highly powerful, yet sweet and fruity at the same time. In fact, this sophistication is what intrigues and pulls in the most discerning beer connoisseurs. Savouring a Leffe Radieuse is almost like a ritual. Served with delicate side dishes like grilled lamb or strong cheeses, the flavour of the beer becomes even more intense.
Serve at 5 or 6°C in its chalice, which will allow all the flavours to come through as well as produce a generous, particularly creamy foam head.