Herkenrode are the only beers in the world from a female monastery.
One of only 23 Abbey Beers in Belgium, Herkenrode Abbey began brewing beer when it was founded
as a convent for Cistercian nuns in 1182.
All that remains of the former abbey of Herkenrode near Hasselt is the magnificent 17th century abbey farm. The oldest traces, including the remains of a brewery, go all the way back to 1182.
Brewer Jef Cornelissen Senior was responsible for launching this abbey beer with the assistance of Robert Putman, formerly engineer-brewmaster with Cristal-Alken.
Jef’s brief was ‘to brew a beer with the powerful attitude of the Counts of Loon, the elegance of the abbesses of Herkenrode and the aromas of the herb garden’. Since 2009 Herkenrode has been providing its own ‘recognised’ abbey beers: Herkenrode Bruin and Herkenrode Tripel.
Herkenrode Noctis (7%) is an orange-amber coloured abbey beer, brewed with 100% Munich malt derived from summer barley and brought up to taste with aroma hops.
The taste is enhanced by allowing the beer to mature on wood for a month which gives it a smoky touch and a hint of vanilla. But what makes this abbey beer so special?
Just like the tripel, it goes down easily and is served in an elegant tasting glass. The beer is unpasteurised, ensuring that the rounded taste is fully preserved.
A dark abbey beer such as this is often denoted by the term ‘dubbel’, indicating a higher proportion of ingredients (a higher dosage) than ordinary beer.
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