Food, Beer, and Travel

a dump from the mind of Jon Piper

Posts Tagged ‘imperial stout’

Péché Mortel

Posted by jwpiper on January 25, 2009

A bottle of Péché Mortel from Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel came out to be compared with the last few sips of the Founders Imperial Stout. Poured straight from the cellar into a snifter. I’ve had it a couple of times before and have always looked back on my high ratings as a potential fluke. This tasting will give me the opportunity to remember whether its a beer worthy of such high regard.
Appearance
4
Extremely dark brown. Actually pours brown rather than motor oil black as the Founders Imperial Stout does. Appears much less viscous too. The head is tan and 3cm.
Smell
4
Coffee and… a little mustiness. I don’t remember this mustiness on my original tastings only a couple of months ago. It might be a bit of the smell of stale coffee. This beer may not have stood the test of time, although the deeper I stick my nose into this one, the more I think it may actually be the much greater sweetness of the Founders which brings out the mustiness in this smell.
Taste
4.5
Oh yeah. Ummm, yeah. That’s good. And more complex than I remember. It’s a coffee bomb, but there’s chocolate, and nuttiness, and such a wonderfully bitter balancing finish. This is definitely a better beer than the Founders is fresh. Indeed, it makes me shun the initial comparison. Though it has caused me to appreciate some flavors/aromas in this (and the Founders) which I wouldn’t have otherwise gotten.
Mouthfeel
4.5
The palate is smooth and medium-thick with a spritely effervescence. Quite enjoyable.
Drinkability
4.5
A sipper, but a very drinkable, inviting one. Not too much alcohol, ad well balanced. The bitterness is not off-putting, and instead quite welcoming.
Overall
4.3
Not as highly rated as my review when fresh (4.4 – I think largely because of the aroma). This is a beer which should undoubtedly be consumed fresh. And this experience has strengthened my faith in my original high marks for this beer. Fairly complex and very well balanced.
Price
$5.50/11.5oz. A pretty expensive beer, but if it’s a coffee bomb you want, you’ll get it here like nowhere else. I also put this up against a Speedway Stout one evening and SS was much better (and thus a much better value), but Péché Mortel is certainly a unique beer which is tough to value.

Posted in Beer, Beer Review | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Founders Imperial Stout

Posted by jwpiper on January 25, 2009

I’d pretty much given up on getting any Founders Imperial Stout this season, but a trip to one of my favorite beer stores to pick up Hopslam and Bigfoot resulted in this acquisition as well. I’ll be drinking a couple of beers tonight in effort to get back into the swing of things after a drought on good beer while in India. I pour this one into a snifter at cellar temperature.
Appearance
4.5
Pitch black with a 1.5 cm coffee foam tan head.
Smell
4
Tons of coffee on the aroma. Some other roasted flavors. Sweet. An inviting smell, though it makes me wonder if this one might be a bit too one dimensional.
Taste
4
Mmmm – roasty and delicious. Very warm. There’s a ton of coffee in the middle and coffee bitterness in the finish, but the start is malty sweet with a little nuttiness. This flavor is carried through with the roasted coffee flavors into the finish. There is tons of bitterness in the finish – which actually dominates a little too much for my taste, but enforces the bittersweet chocolate flavor. Ahh, just noticed the 90 IBU’s slapped on the neck label.
Mouthfeel
4.5
The first impression even before the flavor on the tongue was the feel past the lips – this beer is viscous – smooth, but thick.
Drinkability
4
The heat and bitterness limit the drinkability of this beer. This is an extreme sipper.
Overall
4.15
A good imperial stout, and one which begs for me to open a Péché Mortel for comparison. I love the mouthfeel on this, but the hop bitterness is a little too dominant for me. Perhaps with some age, this beer could be among the better stouts, but fresh it’s just a touch abrasive. Still a good IS.
Price
$12/4pk ($3/12oz). I can think of some stouts I’d rather have at this or a lower price point: Bell’s Expedition, Siberian Night is better fresh but not as powerful. Not tons cheaper than Speedway Stout which is tough to top.

[edit]: Founders gets a much maltier sweetnes when smelled/tasted after the Péché Mortel. Even brings out some ripe fruits in the aroma and on the palate. I’m a little embarrassed to have even thought of Péché Mortel when drinking this beer.

Posted in Beer, Beer Review | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »