Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Tasting: Les Fleurs du Mal

This has proved again to be one of my favorite recipes. The marriage of fruity Belgian yeast and American citrus hops has shown itself to be an excellent combination. I had only planned one batch of this for the summer but it has gone so fast I may have to brew up another to quench my thirst.

The color splits the difference between orange and amber and puts up big off-white head from the high carbonation. Oranges dominate the aroma among other tropical fruits with a grassy, herbal note adding some complexity. In the mouth, it presents a prickly carbonation and bitterness up front with a slight caramel sweetness and burning alcohol, which provides just enough kick to please a Scotch drinker, in the middle. The bitterness returns for a long, dry finish. Well chilled, its an ale that is very refreshing on a hot summer's eve.

The only change I would make would be to substitute pale malt of some, if not all, of the pils to give some extra malt to interact with the hops and yeast.

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