Thursday, March 25, 2010

Brasserie de Blaugies - La Moneuse Spéciale Noël

I'll start off by saying that I don't know what half of that means.  Who would have thought that all that French I learned in high school would have exited my memory bank so soon.  What I do know is that this is a Belgian winter ale from the 'Brasserie de Blaugies' and it's technically classified as a Belgian Strong Pale Ale - one of my favorite styles.  Here is their website!  This might be my all-time favorite brewery website, taking 'keep it simple' to another level entirely.  What my old French teachers would be proud to know, is that I can gather from this site that they are a family-owned artisan brewery, they don't filter their beer, and use bottle-fermentation techniques.  Yummy.

On to the beer itself... it came in a 750ml bottle, poured into a Chimay goblet after a nice pop of the cork. The beer is an orange-red color with a huge creamy head. So far it looks like this one is on the fresh side!  I picked this up at the same time as the last beer I reviewed, the Blance de Saisis, and that one was lacking in the freshness department like sushi at a chinese buffet.

The nose is strong on the Belgian spices... definite orange flavors as well. Very nice. The flavor is more of the same, a little rough around the edges though... crisp but has some bite at the end. The Belgian spices come out, as well as the hops at the end, the overall flavor is earthy for lack of a better term. I like it, not the best Belgian ale ever but very very good. Great carbonation and mouthfeel as well, and even at 8% abv the alcohol is hardly noticeable.  I'll definitely be on the lookout for more from Brasserie de Blaugies at Calandro's and other places in town.

My rating: A
BeerAdvocate: B+