Texel is the biggest of the Frisian Islands, situated in the Wadden Sea these islands stretch from The Netherlands up to Denmark and form a large and beautiful World Heritage Site renowned for its wildlife, most specifically its wild birds.
Texelse Bierbrouwerij brews in copper tanks and top ferments many of its beers.
They have a core range of five or so with a few seasonals thrown in for good measure and are the only brewery on the islands.
When I heard about them I was as intrigued by the idea of the location as much as I was of how the beer might taste and so I tracked them down and got hold of a few bottles to try.
From what I can tell the brewery is slowly moving towards a bigger presence in the UK and on tasting their beer for the first time I can only say that this is a very good thing indeed.
My first taste of a Texels beer and its really rather good.
Pouring thick as orange juice and sitting in the glass all caramel rich and inviting, the aroma is lightly yeasty with a lovely candied peel fruitiness and a handful of sugary sweets.
For an amber ale there’s a big Saison thing going on which I find ever so appealing.
Lots of bruised apple fruitiness, pithy grape skins and a bang of fleshy sultana goodness all wrapped up in a thick toffee coating.
That said, you get a decent sparkling spicy edge too, with mixed peppercorns popping before a tongue drying leafy finish that’s absolutely brilliant.
This beer opened with a hiss of sweetie tinged liquorice goodness and poured thick and luxurious into my glass leaving a yummy coffee cream head.
There’s a light treacle smell that hangs around too and the first mouthful gives you a big smiley hit of childhood dandelion and burdock flavours along with a mix of liquorice stick and toasted malty richness.
There’s a big dose of dark bitter chocolate in here too that gives a smooth sumptuous feel and is tempered by a lovely wash of espresso.
All of this and some excellent lip smacking dryness, with lemon sherbet and a surprisingly big whack of resinous pine needles.
I like this a lot.
What an interesting brew this Dunkel Witbier is.
Made with wheat and barley malts and with a good hearty ABV, this beer is a cloudy rich mandarin colour and has a delightfully yeasty apples and pears aroma.
It positively fizzes with life and from the first sip the flavours are clean and well defined.
You get a very fine fruit salad sweetness coupled with some rich and thick honey which is backed up by a cold steely yeast presence that reminds me a lot of Delirium’s Tremens.
There’s a light wafery ice cream cone biscuit and a whole load more apples, and then a great big splash of edgy, sharp citrus tinged dryness that leaves a lovely bitter sweet afterglow.
This is the Texelse take on the German Weizenbier style and in my humble opinion it’s more akin to a light Belgian ale, and it’s all the better for that.
This is a lovely light and clean straw coloured beer with a very fresh leafy orchard aroma.
The flavours are crisp and clean and crystal clear with a light flaky pastry choux bun malt, crumbling and toasted around the edges, with a soft caramel and stewed apple filling.
Dangerously easy drinking, Texels Wit has a super crisp, crunchy bitter finish that’s full of elderflower softness and a berry leaf pithiness that sweeps away this beautifully light beer ready for your next glass.
I definitely saved the best until last, as this golden honey coloured beer is a beast.
It holds a delicious head right through and simply bubbles with trouble.
The smell is an enormous fog of jelly sweets and cheap boozy liquorice, and the flavours follow suit.
From the first sip you get hit by sweet shop treats, tropical fruit salad sweets, sherbet dips and red liquorice laces.
There’s also some fresh browned apple juice in here, along with some fresh herbs and a handfull of mixed peppercorns.
What makes this an especially treacherous beer is that although the flavours are huge and there’s a decent warmth, this beer doesn’t taste strong.
In fact it’s a very easy drink to drink and before you know it the ABV has snuck up on you and given you a proper seeing to.
Having taken another big slug I’m being assaulted by brandy snap toffee sweetness and a ovely bitter sting on the roof of my mouth.
The finish here is all apple freshness with lots of greenery and some pithy citrus to dry everything beautifully.