roeselare

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100425104447_MG_9424 by Mark Edward Maciel

Back in the day with @janaundjs in Roeselare, when we were young and fierce 😉 @Regrann from @bjornvanpoucke - Throwback Thursday to 2014 when I invited the French-Austrian @janaundjs to paint a stenciled work in Roeselare #tbt #stencilart #streetart #streetphotography #buildinggraffiti #graffitiart #art #streetart #handmade #instagraffiti #street #graff #animation #urban #wallart #spraypaint #aerosol #spray #wall #mural #murals #painting #arte #color #streetartistry #artist #grafiti #urbano #rue https://www.instagram.com/p/BT95Yl8Ds_O/

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They take cycling seriously in Belgium. 

In Flanders, it’s basically a religion. 

When the Wielermuseum (cycling museum) in Roeselare, West Flanders, closed for lengthy renovations in 2015, officials rented a nearby deconsecrated church to host this exhibition that spotlights local “god” Eddy Merckx, who won 525 races in his career — the most by any cyclist. 

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The Heroes of Roeselare

I’ve long had a soft spot for the West Flanders brewery, Rodenbach, and the mere thought of their sour, funk-tastic Flemish reds causes almost uncontrollable drooling from yours truly. I was recently fortunate enough to acquire a couple of their star beers, the fruity Caractère Rouge, and their most recent Vintage. Worried about dehydration through excessive drooling I opened the pair of them this Sunday gone, and what a treat they were.

I started with Caractère Rouge (7.0% abv). Fresh cherries, raspberries and cranberries are macerated for six months in two year oak aged beer to create this sour red ale, and it’s quite simply phenomenal! It’s tart leading to sour, with hugely complex fruit flavours, those cherries, raspberries, and cranberries all singing in perfect harmony with no one hogging the limelight. Beneath the fruit there’s some red wine vinegar spilled on old straw lined wooden floor boards and moped up with pomegranate and red currant biscuits, but that fruit trio are definitely the stars. It’s well carbed, dry on the finish. An immensely refreshing beer and up there with certain Cantillon’s in my top tier of fruit beers. 

Next was their Vintage 2012 (7% abv), a rather special two year oak aged Flemish red. This stuff is properly, face invertingly sour, and funkier than my socks after a long run. It’s also somewhat bewilderingly complex, with loadsa red wine flavours, along with unripe cherries and crab apples, cider, sweet balsamic vinegar, church pews, weasel piss, a sweaty old leather jacket, playful water voles… It’s medium carbed and bodied with a lovely, lingering sour and fruity finish. I am once again left amazed by this brewery, incredible stuff.

And then they were gone. Two hugely different sours, one bright and fruity, one darkly funky. Both completely awesome. Keep a lookout for ‘em if you like beers that make you go all scrunchy faced. Cheers!