Ladies and gentlemen, meet Morpheus. Morpheus is the house yeast of the Alvinne brewery in Heule, West Flanders. According to their website it's a semi-tame blend of wild yeast and lactobacillus, and they seem inordinately proud of the bugger since lots of their bottles bear the "Morpheus yeast inside" badge. I have a few of them knocking around the collection, and decided on Columbus as the first to open. Hop freshness and all that.
Morpheus did not endear itself to me from the outset: bucketloads of foam gushed from the bottle and pouring became a two-glass job with beer refusing to stay in the bottle for more than a couple of seconds before making another bid for the neck. The stirred-up lees meant each glass turned out a different colour of hazy orange.
7.1% ABV and 136 IBUs says the stats. There's a touch of sherbet in with the sharp yeast in the aroma but the flavour is all about funk: a real down and dirty wild yeast barnyard taste, tempered only slightly by the citric hops. I'm reminded a lot of fresh Orval. It's the same sort of uncompromised tangy sourness, though with a little less balance, and more of an accidentally-tasted-perfume intensity.
I expected more from this. I hoped for more of an American hop character. As-is it's a bit of an awkward, messy, difficult beer, and not really for me. Nevertheless, more from Morpheus in due course. I'll be ready with the buckets next time.
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