"Solid and well-made quadruple that shows particular promise on the palate with complexity and longevity"
(Photo by JD)
The small brewery of Chamaven was founded some years ago by four friends after years of recreational practice. Named after the Germanic tribe that occupied the area of the city of the Dutch town of Zutphen, the monthly production volume is now being multiplied by a 10-fold to 4,000 litres. Although, it is still considered a side-job next to their daily occupation, this might be a serious step towards becoming full-time brewers. Currently, they produce four different types of beers, including a quadruple called Rijkhard, a old-Dutch translation of the name Richard and meaning a strong ruler. So far Chamaven’s beers are only available in local bars and liquor stores.
The first smell is that of dark brown sugar, maybe a hint of molasses, but anyway sweet and with substance. Sweet liquorice and liquorice root, both not overpowering and balanced by a fresh citrus note. I think I even find some melon in there. Cherry liquor and apple fritter filled with liquor-soaked apples. The latter must be something new to me, at least in a beer nose.
A mix of liquorice, brown sugar and bitter-sweet hops. Very drinkable. Some caramel in the aftertaste with more bitter hops, which make it slightly drying and earthy. I get some kind of roots, clove, cinnamon cake, nutmeg and spice cake. I think I like the palate better than the nose, there is just more complexity and excitement going on. Some sugarred apple, rye bread, more malt and rye with a bitter edge.
I believe this is a good effort of this young brewery to prepare a solid quadruple. Those nose might need some more power, often a problem with quadruples in my experience so far, but the palate is already on par with many well-known beers of this style. I guess with more experience, better equipment and strong-mindedness, like the Germanic folk, their beers will only get better. What I know is that I will definitely try to follow their progress.