Name: La Moneuse Special Winter
Brewery: Brasserie de Blaugies
Country of Origin: Belgium
City & State: NA
Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale
Alcohol Content (ABV): 8%
I am mad. I grabbed this bottle because I thought it was “on the list” only to find out they make a La Moneuse and a La Moneuse Special Winter. Actually, according to BeerAdvocate, it is called La Moneuse Spéciale Noël while the label simply says La Moneuse Special Winter. Regardless, it is not on the list. That is just another reason why we should leave the list behind and focus on a new journey… Like an “off the wall” concept.
We found this bottle at Sun Devil Liquors last weekend. It was on sale, and I am sure it is a delicious beer. I like a good saison, especially one from Belgium. Here we go. Cheers!
In the Glass: That is the darkest saison I have ever seen. It looks more like a Belgian tripel, which is another style I love. However, when I was pouring this, I could smell it and it smells like a saison. I like that word… Saison. The beer did start with a massive head, but it quickly returns to a nice thin white layer of foam on top. Let’s see what this smells like upon further analysis. (That means I am going to stick my nose in the beer!)
Nose: It has a nice earthy aroma to it, but then I am hit with hints of sour. The Belgians are really good at making sour beer, too. Maybe we should just move to Belgium for a few years and drink our way around the country. I really hope this beer is somewhat sour. That would be a pleasant surprise. Here goes nothing.
Flavor: It isn’t sour. Actually, the first thing I said, “Weird.” Those same earthy notes are present, but this isn’t a typical saison. I wonder how many times I can say that in this blog post…
The label says, “A special edition of La Moneuse, extra rich for the winter season.” Not sure what they did differently, but this isn’t the best saison I have. Actually, based solely on flavor, I wouldn’t consider this a saison at all.
Mouthfeel: There is a nice carbonation here, but it doesn’t really coat the palate with flavor. It is also very easy to drink, which at 8% could be dangerous. Maybe I am still mad that this isn’t the beer from the list. Or maybe that will be the nail in the coffin to not ditch the list, but to drive us to picking a new direction.
Dean, a big fan of 1001 Bottles, likes what we are doing. He is fun to talk to. Cheers, Dean!
Aftertaste: The aftertaste is boring. It is gone after a few swallows. (If you didn’t drink beer and read this blog, you might think we were naughty!) The label is cute, though… With that little snowman holding a bottle of the beer. My mom likes snowmen. Maybe she would like this beer! We are going to a Spring Training game today. Maybe I can find better beers there. Cheers!
I will say, as this beer is heating up on my desk, the flavor is starting to open up a little. Not enough for me to change my rating. Again, I blame the list!
So this started out being one of our list beers. Then Ricky realized it wasn’t the version of the beer that’s on the list. It’s a Christmas beer, and the one on the list is not. But of course we’re drinking it anyway (duh). We’re just going to do it as an “off the wall” beer instead.
The beer foamed up with quite a bit of head when it was poured into the glass. Mine has dissipated pretty nicely (I don’t really like drinking through foam to get to my beer). It’s a cloudy burnt orange color in the glass. I’m hoping this is a style I like, since Ricky let me pick had the beer this time. It smells like… grapefruit, with a tiny hint of spice to it. Hard to tell from the smell how it will taste. Let’s find out!
It’s more carbonated than I expected. The bubbles are definitely the first thing to hit your tongue, and they are really there. It’s almost hard to get to the flavor past the bubble. But the flavor that is there is consistent with the grapefruit nose. It tastes fruity to me, and almost kind of light. Or maybe that’s just because of the carbonation. It’s a good beer, and I like it. But it doesn’t really floor me. Ricky said it’s weird. I’m not sure if I’d agree or not. (So maybe that means that it is!) One thing, I do keep coming back to it to get another sip to decide if I like it or not. And I still can’t decide! No, I think I do. It does have a lighter flavor and more carbonation than I expected, but it’s balanced well. Depending on the price, I might buy this one again, but to be honest, I probably won’t remember it as something special.