ABOUT BrOUWERIJ DILEWYNS
The founder of Brouwerij Dilewyns (Vincent Dilewyns) has ancestry that reaches back into the 17th Century (as the website states), but most of the history chronicled on their website is from the 19th century.
Vincent’s ancestors converted an old butchery shop (located in Dendermonde) into a brewery in the 1800’s. However, during the two world wars, the copper kettles were claimed to make ammunition, which spelled the end of the brewing history for the family.
A HOMEBREWING DENTIST VENTURES INTO WHAT WAS IN HIS BLOOD
12 years before Brouwerij Dilewyns became a full-fledged brewing venture, founder Vincent Dilewyns was a professional dentist during the day, and an aspiring homebrewer in his spare time. As a descendant from a brewing family, beer brewing was already in his blood.
Vincent enrolled in brewing studies and courses in order to up his game. He purchased some small-scale brewing equipment to get started, and after the necessary raw materials were purchased, he set out to brew his first batch on December 11, 1999.
Vincent experimented with different yeasts, malts and hops, which brought him fairly quick and brilliant results. His first beers were the Triple, followed by the General. With these beers, the “Vicaris” line of beers were born.
In the beginning, it was not Vincent’s intention to sell his beers- he brewed them mainly for his personal consumption. Fate would have it, there was a special event for the archaeological circle of Grembergen that focused around the brewing history of the town. Vincent decided to use this event as a springboard for a ‘test’ brewery to make the Vicarisbieren under license. The beer surplus of the event reception was sold to interested villagers and acquaintances.
Because of the great response to Vincent’s beers, he was invited to participate in the Zythos beer festival in Sint-Niklaas in 2006 where his Vicaris Tripel conquered the hearts of the consumer. At the 2007 Zythos beer festival, his “Vicardin” beer won first prize, and the 2nd Prize was awarded to the Tripel. After receiving so much appreciation and winning several prizes, it sent the ball rolling for his upcoming brewing venture.
THE BEGINNING OF A NEW COMMERCIAL BREWING VENTURE
In March 2010, a new piece of history was written which cemented the foundation for Vincent’s future- a new building site became available in the industrial area of Dendermonde. Taking a leap of faith and investing the family fortune, Vincent decided to purchase the land for his future commercial brewery. After a year’s toil and sweat into the property, a beautiful brewery was born and the first brew was made with the newly installed state-of-the-art brewing equipment!
Vincent recruited his daughters Anne-Cathérine and Claire to help with overall operations- (Claire on the marketing and administrative side, and Anne-Cathérine with brewing production and sales). In May 2011, the brewery celebrated its official opening. The mayor, aldermen, journalists, fellow brewers, friends and supporters were all present to participate in the celebration. (Source: Vicaris.be)
THE BREWMASTER – A BRIGHT RISING STAR
At only 28 and the youngest brewer in Belgium, Anne-Cathérine brews her father’s recipes. She began brewing the tender age of 12 and has never looked back.
Her masters degrees in business studies, and Strategic Management lend very well to her demanding role in the day-to-day production operations at the brewery.
Recently, she was named one of three female rising star brewers in the world; her beers have received accolades from Saveur, The Chicago Sun Times and First We Feast, among others. (Source: Total Beverage Solution)
She also earned a place on the ambitious ’30 under 30′ list in Forbes magazine. Together with two other young Belgian entrepreneurs, she was put on the list of the most successful European entrepreneurs in the ‘under thirty’ creative sector. Anne-Cathérine earned a place between influential European entrepreneurs from the music world, industry, art world and food sectors.
The news came as a complete surprise, but she responded enthusiastically. “Women and beer, there is actually something in it,” she says. “Beer that is art. I am therefore delighted with the beautiful appreciation in Forbes.”
Being added in the prestigious Forbes magazine ’30 under 30′ list came after an interview with Saveur magazine. “I’m really surprised that I was included on that list, but it is of course a very great honor,” said Anne-Catherine. “Anyway I stick with both feet on the ground… I have to run a brewery.” (Source: HLN.be)To this day, Brouwerij Dilewyns enjoys great commercial success internationally and at home in Belgium. Vincent Dilewyns’ original brewing passions are gaining strong market share due to the innovative and powerful efforts from daughters Anne-Cathérine and Claire. No doubt, Vincent’s other two daughters will follow in his and in their sisters footsteps in the future.
BEER STYLE AND COMMERICAL DESCRIPTION
Style category: Belgian Tripel & Gueuze blend
This unusual blend of Dilewyns’ classic Tripel and Gueuze from the nearby Girardin brewery was created as a serendipitous accident. Combining a richly sweet, honeyed Tripel and perfectly balancing it with a sour-sweet Gueuze, Dilewyns creates a brand-new beer that is dry and crisp, with a complex tannic character that is sure to become a classic.
OUR BREWVIEW on VICARIS TRIPEL GUEUZE
APPEARANCE / THE POUR:
7% ABV. Poured into an open-mouthed chalice and served at 43°F. The very slightly off white colored head poured an easy 2.5-finger height, tightly bubbled and dense (we did ensure that it was a “Beer Clean” glass).
SRM value is around a 6 (Deep Gold.) There was some murkiness to it, due to the fact that we love to pour yeast sediment from the bottle. However, with the intial pour, we did not rouse up the yeast (we did so in subsequent glass pours). 7-8 minutes later, it retained a 1/2″ height head. As the head collapsed, it left behind even-sheeted, spider-web, patchy lacework on the sides of the glass. The meniscus is medium to slow rising, the rim color variation is an SRM value of 4 (Pale Gold.) 12 minutes later, it was still holding an 1/8″ inch head, which is very impressive due to the acidic properties of a Gueuze beer.
AROMA / BOUQUET:
Beautiful sweet and sour mix, if you will. The aromas are the classic Belgian Tripel mix of fruity esters, malty sweetness paired with the backbone of Brett funk, barnyard, horseblanket, wet hay. However, neither beer profile (Tripel and Gueuze) dominates one over the other. Wonderful balance. There are notes of apricot, young sour peach, and fragrant Belgian yeast aromas. 15 minutes into drinking, you can smell the VERY faint wood influences from the Gueuze.
Oh yes! The initial sip gives you the classic Tripel flavors- delicate sweet malt, bready yeast. However the Girardin Gueuze adds that perfect balance of sourness, not overly aggressive. The way we can describe the flavors of this beer would be “ever-changing.” You get the sweet, then all of a sudden, you get the funky sour tartness. Amazing. Let the beer sit in your mouth for a minute or so… you’ll see what we mean.
MOUTHFEEL / PALATE:
The effervescence level is moderate, which makes it VERY easy to drink. However, the acidity of the beer gives you that tickle on the tip of your tongue upon first sip. Medium bordering on full-bodied, it livens up the sides and the back of the mouth.
FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTIONS:
APPETIZERS / CHEESES: Trappist , washed rind cheeses. Port salut, high quality Blue cheese, Stilton, Roquefort, Gouda, double sharp Irish cheddar. Charcuterie platters with a mixed variety of meats due to its complex flavor profile.
ENTRÈES: Moules-frites / Mosselen-friet witout a doubt! Chicken Cordon Bleu, Duck a l’orange, Carbonnade a la beouf, Konijn in geuze / Lapin à la Gueuze.
DESSERTS: Right off the bat, we would suggest a classic, New York cheesecake. Lemon vanilla ice cream would be a great pairing, peach cobbler or mixed stone fruit pie would be fantastic.
Masterfully blended, we give huge kudos to Brewmaster Anne-Cathérine and the folks at Girardin for collaborating to make such a masterpiece!
The Brazilian soccer star Pelé said, “Success is no accident.” However in this case, it is. If you are a fan of Belgian Tripels and Gueuzes, you will totally fall in love with this beer!
A super sophisticated beer, the VICARIS TRIPEL GUEUZE is a clear representation of the artistry that Anne-Cathérine Dilewyns expresses through her brewing. Remember the lyrics from the old James Brown song- “This is a man’s world… but it would be nothing… nothing… without a woman!” And historically since some of the first brewers were women, (brewsters) the brewing world owes a huge debt of gratitude to them.
The aging potential for VICARIS TRIPEL GUEUZE is excellent- we estimate at least 5-7 years in the proper conditions. Destined to become a world classic, this is a MUST HAVE. Seek this one out for sure.
Zegen voor jou Anne-Cathérine, en alle bij Brouwerij Dilewyns!
BrewView author GORDON A. PONCE is the main driving force behind Belgian Beer Journal.com. Since 1983, Gordon recognized that beers from Belgium were special, set apart from the typical craft beer.
He views beers from Belgium (plus Belgian-style and Belgian Inspired beers from other countries) great examples of the brewer’s art. Gordon and his wife live in beautiful Northern California- a great place to enjoy Belgian beer! Ecclesiastes 8:15