I guess it was one of those "I'm leaving Sainsbury's and there's still a square inch of space in my trolley!" moments. I recall the items purchased on that excursion included a duvet, a toaster, a thing for poaching eggs in the microwave, and this: Sainsbury's Abbaye blonde. This was last October and the large bottle has languished in the back of my fridge ever since.
My enthusiasm for drinking it probably lasted less than the time it took me to wedge it in next to the tea towels, and as far as I can see it's no longer sold by Sainsbury's. The web tells me it's from the Saint Omer brewery in north east France which raises a question about the "Bière de Belgique" wording on the label. Can this be translated as "Belgian-style beer"? I dunno. Though it being French would explain the awfully clunky "Premium Continental Blonde" style designation. And does anyone still buy things because they're "Continental"?
Anyhoo, it's rubbish. Though a lovely shade of dark amber, its flavour is completely hollow, showing only the faintest hints of golden syrup right at the very back. I had been bracing for something horribly sticky, and its wateriness left me feeling somewhat short-changed. On the plus side it's very easy to put away, even at 5.6% ABV. The carbonation is low so it's actually quite refreshing.
But who wants a Belgian-style blonde that's refreshing?