So, as promised, here’s the second part of the review of the IPA duo from À La Fût – and it really was worthwhile drinking the two back-to-back to compare. The only thing fundamendally different about these beers is that the first was a blonde IPA relying on light malts and this one uses much sturdier, roasted malts. The result is immediately obvious in the different SRM (“standard reference method” used to measure a beer’s colour/turbidity) which goes from 4.7 previously to 10 in this case. The different malts are just as obvious in the mouth as well. What was missing in the blonde was more complexity that would accrue from some caramelized malts. This one has that … a mouthful. Indeed, take a long quaff and you get a mouthful of hoppy beer that tastes like there is a caramel melting inside it. The idea is right but the structure is wrong. The flavours are there, but they don’t really belong. It’s sort of like this beer is driving someone else’s car (and I know, right: beers shouldn’t drink and drive either).
The colour is a rich amber to brown colour with the same qualities associated with the fact that is being brewed sur lies; it has the same high carbonation that is out of balance and it has the same high hops that still don’t have a reasonable accompaniment.
The malts bring colour and definitely some more earthiness (from the darker malt) that borders on tobacco or a Cuban cigar more specifically.
While this beer isn’t particularly unpalatable, it lacks cohesion and so it really isn’t a “good” beer and is rather average, at least in relative terms. While I’d still recommend purchasing the two of these IPAs to learn both what hops taste like unadorned and then to experience and taste what malts on their own will do to a beer. So, technically, a great learning experience – unfortunately, what you’ll learn is that there are much better brewers out there than À La Fût and at nearly $4 for a bottle, a ton which will produce far superior products for half the price.
Stats: American Pale Ale. 6.3%. 60 IBUs. St-Tite, Quebec.
Colour: dark amber/light brown; sur lies.
Mouth Feel: Tight carbonation with a bit of creaminess from caramels and diacetyls; a bit harsh or ‘burning’ on the palette.
Purchased: Quebec (e.g. Brouehaha)
Pairings: Like it’s brother, any western “Chinese” take-out.