Monday, January 28, 2013

Beer O'Clock: Beau's Does It Again

I like Beau's, but not always.

Beau's All Natural Brewing Company is what I consider a hit-and-miss company. Sometimes, this organic beer company produces some awe-inspiring beer, like its Bog Water, its Beaver River IP-Eh, and its Hogan's Goat Spiced Bock. I absolutely loved their Weiss O'Lantern Pumpkin Wheat Ale—it was my overall favourite pumpkin ale last fall.

Sometimes, I feel the Vankleek Hill brewery misses. I'm sorry to say, I am not a fan of their flagship beer, Lug Tread Lagered Ale. And I found that their Mr. Hyde rye flavoured IPA was a little too much.

You can't please everyone.

But their third installment of their winter beer is a big-time pleaser.
Winterbrewed Coffee Amber Ale
Beau's All Natural Brewing Company
Vankleek Hill ON
LCBO: $7.85, 600 ml; 6% ABV
My Beer O'Clock rating: 4/5
Created a couple of years ago, during Winterlude, the folks at Beau's teamed up with another local company that specializes in fair-trade, organic coffee (yes, I'm talking about Bridgehead). The result is an amber ale that has coffee written all over it.

And then some.

Deep copper-red with a creamy, beige head, I detected malt and heavy raisins off the nose, followed by a hint of that Bridgehead coffee. The raisin flavours carry through on the palate and mix with spiced fruit cake and burnt caramel. And then the coffee comes through to the finish, which balances nicely with the alcohol. With each sip (and you'll want to continue to sip this stuff), the coffee builds.

Coffee and beer: my two favourite liquids.

I found a perfect food pairing with this beer: poutine. I made some homemade poutine this weekend, peeling and slicing Yukon Gold potatoes and baking them in the oven with organic olive oil, and then sprinkling them with St-Albert's curds and drenching them in a beef gravy. On a cold winter's day, this is the perfect comfort food. Winterbrewed is the perfect ale to wash it down with.

No doubt, Beau's will be at Winterlude, during the beer festival on Sparks Street (February 16 and 17), aptly named Winter Brewed. I'll be shocked if their Winterbrewed isn't on offer.

Because that would be a real miss.

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