Friday, May 7, 2010

311. Schafly Grand Cru

My day started with a trip to Brewtensils to see Larry Bell (of Bell’s Brewery, dummy, and Elli had to work) speak, and also for some general chicanery, beer-nerd style. It’s just like when an author comes to town—all the kiddies come out in droves, except they come dragging beer paraphernalia, not old copies of books. Seriously. Mike Schwartz, owner of Brewtensils, interviewed him, and he entertained a couple of questions from the crowd (you can see the interview here). He told us about the trials and tribulations of starting a brewery before the craft beer explosion, and the joys of brewing beer in garbage cans. Awesome.

Our beer for the day was Schafly Grand Cru, another beer from Saint Louis Brewing Company and Schafly; this is the third beer we’ve had from them, including Biére de Garde and IPA.

Pure Beefcake...

Grand Cru pours a burnished gold with extremely pillow-y head; the nose carries with it Belgian yeast ester and some fruitiness—mainly, the pitted orange fruits, like peaches, apricots, and nectarines—along with some Belgian candy sweetness and a light touch of mustiness. Flavor starts with Belgian candy sweetness before moving into fruitiness in the middle, although not as much or as distinct as in the nose, although there is some apple juiciness. The finish has some drying feel to it, although there is still a good amount of sweetness. Grand Cru has a medium to heavy body; the carbonation is soft and creamy with a small bit of bite at the end, although it could use a bit more to help further dry the beer out. The mouthfeel is soft and creamy, although a bit sticky. A good beer, but they do need to dry the body out to better fit the Belgian/golden ale style—this one is still a bit much, although they do a nice job of hiding the alcohol—even when it got warm, the malt and candy sweetness were still to the front.

From the bottle: “Schafly Grand Cru continues our series of bottle-conditioned, Belgian-style ales. Three different traditional Belgian yeast strains contribute fruity and spicy aromas which give complexity to this deep golden ale. Medium body and effervescence create a light, dry impression, despite its gravity and smooth, sweet finish.”

From the Saint Louis Brewery website: “Fruity, spicy aromas and flavors contribute to the complexity of this golden-colored Belgian ale. Medium body and effervescence contribute to a light, dry impression, despite its strength and sweet, smooth finish.”

ABV: 9.0%
OG: 18.3° P
IBU: 20

And no, we didn’t coordinate a Bell's beer for the day of the Larry Bell interview. Color us lame. But I did give him a bottle of the Two-Hearted clone I made with yeast cultured out of his beer. So we’ll just hope it doesn’t offend or kill him—in that order.


No comments:

Post a Comment