AGED IN WHISKY barrels, this Brett-soured blend has its base as a Belgian strong pale ale of 12% ABV. Little room for moderation in this description, but the results were less than strident. The Grand Cru pours an appealing deep honey color but with too-large bubbles in its foamy head and not enough carbonation in the body. Its aroma doesn’t offer much of the barrel aging and is instead quite sweet with peach and honeysuckle leading the way. For a sour, much less any Belgian, it is unexpectedly full-bodied with a cloying aura that impresses itself onto the back of the palate just before sipping—like hot sauce on Buffalo wings, weirdly. Some balance comes via the Brett sourness, phenols, and alcohol in the aroma, while the freshness of the peaches is quite clear from the flavor. 12% was completely unnecessary, though, and at a reported $25 per large-format bottle it is no compelling value.
Served: On tap (Skyline Loft, FoBAB 2013, Chicago)