To cap off a great Beer Week down in San Diego, we went to Toronados on Saturday night for a night dedicated to the great Maine brewery Allagash. They ended up having 7 or 8 of Allagash's offerings on tap and they all proved to be pretty fantastic. Allagash mainly makes belgian style beers, so they had a dubble, tripel, and even a quad. These titles refer to the amount of malt used to make the beer. A dubble is brewed with twice the normal amount of malt, a tripel with three times, etc. In addition, they had a pretty good belgian strong pale ale brewed with grapes and a few others. I chose to get one called Curieux, which besides being difficult to spell is a belgian tripel that is aged for 8 weeks in Jim Beam bourbon barrels.
The beer pours a light hazy golden color with a cream colored ring around the top. The beer didn't smell like much right after it was poured, but once it warmed, the bourbon was definitely evident, along with a sweet malty smell.
The beer definitely has that great tripel flavor to it. It has that familiar yeast taste along with a smooth malty backbone. It's very well balanced. The bourbon is definitely present and presents a pretty substantial amount of heat as you swallow the beer. At 11%, this is a pretty big beer, and you can definitely taste the alcohol thanks to the bourbon. While the bourbon adds complexity to this beer, I don't know that it adds to the overall quality. I'm a huge fan of bourbon barrel aging, but this one became a little overpowering, especially as the beer warmed. Overall, this is a pretty solid offering from Allagash and definitely worth a try if you can find it. Glad I got the chance to try it.
Final Grade: B+