Jun 15, 2010

La Buteuse Brassin Special

I wasn’t intrigued. Not one bit.

I had been in the Gainesville Cork & Fork numerous times and had looked at this very bottle of Le Trou du Diable La Buteuse Brassin Special, only to move on to something more familiar. I’m not entirely sure why I kept passing it by, but I did.

It wasn’t until my most recent stop into the store that I decided that any purchase I was going to make that day had to be something that I had not previously enjoyed — more specifically something from an unfamiliar brewery. And so, that’s how I ended up with this super tasty Belgian strong pale ale from Quebec (home to Unibroue, probably my all time favorite company from the region).

Thanks to Google’s translation services I was able to figure out that this 10% ABV brew was aged four months in apple cider brandy barrels from Michel Jodoin, Canada’s first microdistillery. The result is something special for sure.


This Belgian inspired brew pours a slightly hazy golden amber in color with a decent sized white head that faded slowly.


You pick up the apples almost right away along with a peppery spice and light funkiness from the yeasts used. The alcohol levels give the nose a liquor like heat (think brandy) with a slight woodiness in the background.


This is quite an interesting beer. La Buteuse Brassin Special starts off with an oaky, slightly funky Belgian character before the light, almost delicate, apple and peppery notes come in half way through and linger nicely in the finish. There’s a low level of welcome tartness in the finish, as well. The woodiness from the barrel aging is subtle, but adds a nice touch to the beer’s unique character. The higher ABV is definitely there giving the beer a warming nature, but I wouldn’t consider it hot.


I found this beer to be similar in regard to a farmhouse ale or Saison, but with more up-front apple profile and a little less barnyard funkiness the style tends to carry. The brandy like nature to the flavors makes for a stand-out brew that I will do all I can to get my grubby little hands on again

Rating: 4/5

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