UM02 (287) - Quebec, CANADA - JAN 1, 2012
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
This is an IPA flavoured with gruit not hops. Gruit was a herbal mixture that was widely used as a beer flavouring agent before hops became the standard beer flavouring ingredient. I was excited to try this beer since it is the first gruit beer I have tried. The beer has a very high alcohol content and unfortunately there is little information on the bottle or brewery’s website about the style of brewing other than that it is gruit flavoured. Instead there is an attempt to be cute bla bla bla marketing spiel on the bottle referring to the beer’s name as a charlatan’s tonic. Unfortunate, as a description of how the beer was made would have been a lot more interesting. To the beer itself, the first thing that one notices is that instead of the sharp, invigorating smell of hops, there is a very pleasant sweet smell from the gruit herbs. The gruit has a very strong and intense taste that is both medicinal and reminds one of herb liquor like Jagermeister. That might not sound completely pleasant but the overall taste is actually pretty pleasing. It also masks completely the strong alcohol content, I don’t think I have ever had a beer above 9% alcohol in which the high alcohol content was so undiscernable. All in all a very interesting and decent beer. I don’t think gruit is ever going to win its place back against hops and I would not want to drink several of these beers at one time. However, as an occasional niche beer gruit seems to have a place.
punkska101 (729) - Chambly, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 27, 2011
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
bottle from Grand-Duc A: somehow piney / citrusy with almost perfumy nose. It’s powerfull. App: light clear with minimal head. T/P : light body finish is medium bitter. O : Nice, I was a bit sceptical about that one but i’m really impressed. You don’t get any hotness from the alcohol and it’s complex loaded with different level of aroma.
kschep (1494) - DENMARK - DEC 25, 2011
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
#1030 bottle; Nose is mediumheavy elderflower, medium hay, urinal cakes, citrus, feel Is watery, carb Is medium, taste Is mint, weak barn yard, alcohol kick, bittersour hops finish
Marheb (1529) - Montréal, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 22, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Le nez capte immédiatement les agrumes, les conifères et une fois estompé, le gruit s’enracine dans le décors de façon étrangement aguichante. Au goût, c’est la typique impérial IPA de la côte est mais avec un arrière goût étrange de croûte de fromage. L’amertume est présente mais sans trop bousculer le palais. L’étrangeté du gruit pourrait repousser mais c’est tellement bien fignolé, à commencer par la discrétion de l’alcool. Pas une bière d’exception mais vaut assurément la dégustation.