Jopen B.V. - Meesterstuk 2017
Serving Temperature:48–55° F
Suggested Glassware:Snifter, Small Nonic, or Tulip Glass
We’ve got four incredible beers from Jopen B.V. in this special offer—exclusively brought in for our Rare Beer Club members. We recently featured their standout Gritty Young Thing, a Scottish-style gruit ale, as one of our RBC featured selections, and we managed to get four (rather massive) Jopen offerings together for a tasty followup. We’re kicking things off with the smallest of the four selections: the incredible Meersterstuk 2017, an imperial porter that’s brewed with malted oats, ginger, sea salt, and cocoa. Each year Jopen makes a Masterpiece (“Meesterstuk”) beer to honor St. Martin, the patron saint of the Haarlem Brewers Guild.
This vintage release is drinking so well right now. Meersterstuk 2017 pours a dark chocolate-brown color with some light coming through at the edges. Medium-tan foam lingers for a bit and leaves behind a modest perimeter of bubbles. Engaging initial aromatics balance sweet chocolate and cocoa with spicy ginger character. There are soft, pillowy milk chocolate notes that never overaccentuate the core sweetness, with generous toffee and roast following.
Full-bodied mouthfeel, with a subtle underpinning of carbonation keeping this very pleasant to dig into. The spice from the ginger and deep roast add a lot here, with the hop additions coming through with pine and herbaceous secondary notes. That core combo of cocoa-led chocolates alongside ginger and sea salt is just beautifully handled, and this beer is drinking so smoothly right now. Immensely easy-drinking imperial porter, with its special additions balancing all the rich chocolate, roasted malt and coffee notes at the core of this beer. The lengthy finish shows chocolates alongside some of the nutty, toffee-like secondary notes of the specialty-malt presence. An incredible porter, aged to perfection, to kick things off.
Meersterstuk 2017 has a best-before date of January 2037—so feel free to lose track of this one in your cellar for a bit (though we think it’s drinking great right now). That combo of rich roasted malts and chocolate, along with elements of sea salt and ginger, have us looking to pair this with chili-rubbed steak, lamb kebabs, or your favorite chocolate-inclined dessert.
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