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The best brewers of Belgian-style ales in America create their most celebrated beer by blending two very different styles together and coming up with something unlike anything else on the shelves. At its heart, Ommegang’s Three Philosophers is a Belgian quad, a big and malty style of beer that tastes of figs, raisins, brown sugar, toffee and booze (in some cases with dashes of spice like clove and cinnamon). Simple it is not, and Ommegang pushes that complexity a little further by blending in a small percentage of kriek, which is a sour-cherry style of beer that tends to be—well, sour and brimming with cherry. Though the amount blended in is small (just two percent in all), the cherry tang zips right through all that dark complexity to show itself. Only mildly tart, it balances well against the sweetness of the base beer; the result is something meant to be sipped slowly and appreciated one taste at a time. Three Philosophers can sometimes be found on draft at fine Philly establishments, including the upcoming Pour-A-Palooza event.
PW's Year of Beer: Anchor Porter
PW's Year of Beer: Bells Third Coast