BRUSSELS BEER PROJECT

Origin – Belgium. Brussels
ABV- 4.7%
Size- 330mL bottle
Style- IPA
In 2012, a few lads with an idea to produce a new smartwatch jumped on to the crowdsourcing platform Kickstarter with the hope of raising $100,000 in exchange for a prototype. In the first hour, they raised over $1 million, with the project eventually raising $10.3 million, making it one of the most-funded in Kickstarter’s history. And that’s no isolated case. Last year it was estimated that worldwide over $34 billion USD was raised this way. Therefore, it was only a matter of time before someone in the craft beer world jumped on the bandwagon. And those somebodies were Olivier de Brauwere and Sébastien Morvan, two Belgium college buddies. Their winning formula to stand out from the crowdfunding crowd was a simple concept- Beer for Life. The catchy pitch guaranteed twelve beers per year (for life) in exchange for a one-off payment. Needless to say, there was just a ‘little’ interest. The funding from beer-fans-come-investors not only helped them set up their office and microbrewery in a space that previously housed the famous Brasserie la Verger Ver brewery between 1812-1914, there was enough left-over to start brewing. But for Olivier and Sébastie, getting fans to hand over their hard-earned was just the start of the Brussels Beer Project. The next step was the co-development of the beers. Through a member tasting program, the lads developed, tweaked and refined a bunch of recipes that lead to the creation of their first beer, a Delta IPA (the recipes that didn’t make the cut were aptly named Alpha, Beta and Gamma!). For their second the lads dialled it up another notch. This time creating four new prototypes, Red, Yellow, Mauve and Green. Following private tastings in some of Brussels’ best cafés and restaurants and a ‘grand final’ tasting event which gathered over 2,000 beer lovers at Halles St Géry (aka the Lourve of Brussels!), this Red was the clear winner. The community then chose the name Red My Lips to fit with the seductive nature of the beer. And flirtatious this little red is. The 4-hop mix dominated by Hull and Simcoe delivers a nose of tropical fruits and floral spices, and while the flavour follows the nose, there’s the additional hint of blood orange and caramel malt. Unlike a typical Aussie IPA dominated by a hoppy bitterness, this Belgian styled sessionable is true to its Lambic heritage, serving up a fruit driven bitterness. She won’t kickstart your heart, but I’d happily invest a few bucks to get my hands on a second.

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