February 4, 2009

Session #24 - A Tripel for Two

I’d been remiss about participating in The Session, but love that this monthly meeting-of-the-beerminds is a great topic: drink your favorite Tripel ale with someone you love. So not only is this an excuse to shell out the dough for one of my all-time favorite beers, but it’s the perfect way to get the oft-mentioned yet never-heard-from Half Pint involved.

For starters, though a confirmed “malt-head,” I’m not one for Tripels. Too malty. Go figure. A Tripel is essentially a Belgian-style barleywine with once, twice, three times a malt bill. In a word: sweet. (No tell-tale hoppy bitterness whatsoever.) So at first, I thought I’d have a hard time with this Session, until I remembered that Allagash Curieux is a Tripel base aged in bourbon barrels. Anything + bourbon barrels = awesome.

I picked up a 750 ml of BevMo for $15.99 (along with an Affligem Tripel for Half Pint’s comparison sake) for this assignment. Not being ones for that V-Day crapola, we uncorked our bottle tonight to accompany steak, baked potatoes, steamed broccoli, and some sautéed veggie medley I made up, and sprinkled some cinnamon on it ‘cause I thought that would make it more trip-friendly.

In a word, Curieux is delightful. It’s scrumptious. It’s rich and smooth with a finish that glows with maple, vanilla bean gelato, and warmth. Much better than stouts aged in bourbon barrels because it provides a golden foundation for the “angel’s share” to bask in.

And that’s what I wanted to share with Half Pint. Not to mention, it clocks in at 11% ABV. So, after finishing nearly half the bottle herself, here are her thoughts to steal the show:
My nickname is Half Pint. My boyfriend calls me that and it seems to be catching on. It is because I am a beer fan and also because I am short (a whopping 4'11 3/4"). One of the advantages to dating a beer author is that you get to try good beer. Lots of them. So when he served me steak, potatoes and Allagash Curieux for dinner tonight, I knew I was in for a treat. First sip - yum. Second sip - double yum. Third sip - triple yum. It's like the best qualities from every beer I've ever had (and yes, I've had A LOT of good beers) mixed into one. If you like pecan pie, it was like that but in beer. Different textures and flavors, smooth and crumbly, all mixed into one. In each bite. Refreshing. Comforting. Rich. Somehow, light. Sweet but not syrupy. Again, YUM. Definitely one of my new favorites... It's funny, a lot of girls need flowers or diamonds to know a guy really likes them but I don't need those things. The fact that my guy shared this beer with me shows me how much he really loves me. Okay, I am off to finish the rest of the bottle before my better half beats me to it.

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