This week: Cuvee des Trolls Cuvee Speciale
Brasserie Dubuisson, Pipaix, Belgium
This week's beer is an offshoot of the regular Cuvee des Trolls, which is more in the Belgian blonde or pale ale category, though a bit stronger for the styles at 7% ABV. It is also a filtered beer.
The Cuvee Speciale is a half-percent ABV stronger and not filtered, allowing for refermentation in the bottle. Expect a hint of yeast to show up in the aroma and some haziness to the body. The brewery describes the Speciale as a Belgian trippel.
The pour produces a head that quickly forms a billowy cloud, but with a density that gives it some staying power. The aroma is of pale malts, some citrus notes and the aforementioned yeast, which is more like what you notice when bread dough is rising.
The flavor is again of pale grain, lemon more than orange, candi sugar and a slight Belgian yeast funkiness in the aftertaste. Nothing rough like tobacco or leather, but enough to give it that native Belgian character. The hops are minimal and grassy.
The carbonation is fizzy, not quite champagne-like, but more than is typical for a Belgian trippel. The sugars also are a bit more than usual, but go well with the carbonation, stopping short of putting the ale in soda territory. This is a good beer to accompany fruit before dinner or fruit desserts afterward.
The Dubuisson brewery started on a farm estate and produced beer for the workers and villagers. The family decided to devote itself purely to brewing in 1931 and two years later introduced Bush beer, which is still being made. It later started the Scaldis and Cuvee des Trolls brands. Exports now account for more than 25% of its production.
Dubuisson beers are imported by Vanberg & Dewul! f of Cooperstown, N.Y., and distributed in most states. While V&D does not have a specific beer finder link, it does have Web addresses for all of its distributors, which is located here.
Check out the Scaldis offerings at the same time — it is an excellent brand and bottles of Scaldis de Noel should be on the shelves by now.
Many beers are available only regionally. Check the brewer's website, which often contains information on product availability. Contact Todd Haefer at email@example.com. To read previous Beer Man columns Click here.