Jan 30, 2014

St. Stefanus Blonde

Two things first drew me to this bottle of St. Stefanus Blonde. First was the great label presentation. It’s classy and refined, but not alienating, if that makes any sense. The second was the brewer, Brouwerij Van Steenberge. I’ve become familiar with this company through many bottles of Gulden Draak and Piraat, amongst others. Just about every beer from the company that I’ve encountered has been pretty darn tasty and this 7% ABV Belgian strong pale ale is right in the mix.

This style of beer has some stiff competition with the likes of Duvel, La Chouffe and De Dolle Bos Keun (to name a few). And while St. Stefanus isn’t quite on the same level as some of its contemporaries this little bottle of brew is still flavorful and fully enjoyable. Light, bready and yeasty, the beer drinks well and leaves enough of an impression that the four pack I purchased didn’t last too long.


St. Stefanus Blonde pours amber in color (a slight haze hangs around for a bit) with a long lasting, frothy stack of white foam.

St. Stefanus Blonde photo


Soft fruits, yeast, grain, lightly toasted bread and herbal/spice notes present an inviting nose.


A peppery yeast presence greets the palate first as a light sweetness, grains and distant fruits arrive shortly thereafter. There’s a touch of a hop presence that lingers softly in the warming, semi-dry finish. The flavors and the crisp mouthfeel make for a tasty brew that opens up a bit more as it warms — those distant fruits come a bit more to the forefront.


I liked St. Stefanus Blonde. It may not topple my favorites of the style any time soon, but I found it’s flavors and overall character refreshing. I can see a few more bottles of this brew appearing in my fridge in the future. It’s an approachable and easy drinking beer.

On a bit of a side note, the bottling/release date reads 4/2012 on the label, but the beer doesn’t have any noticeable age to it’s flavors. It drinks much younger than it appears.

Rating: 3.75/5

More: ,