The Miller Brewing Company of Milwaukee, WI is often fond of saying their flagship brew, Miller High Life is the "Champagne of Beers". While I have a nostalgic fondness and at one time enjoyed Miller High Life, (one of my favorites, in my pre-good beer loving days and when the company was American owned), that statement really is quite silly. Let me introduce you to the real champagne of beers. The beer I speak of is Malheur Biere Brut from the DeLandtsheer Brasserie of Buggenhout, Belgium. Why is this beer the real champagne of beers? Well, why don't I let the brewery explain. From the label:
Malheur Biere Brut is an exclusive and rich beer with an alc. vol. of 11%. After bottling it is bottle conditioned a third time in the 'Champenoise' bottle. We have succeeded in collecting the yeast in the bottle neck where it is frozen and removed with the 'degorgement'. A rare example of a refined and bubbling beer with a strong head and an elegant after taste.
Need I say more? But of course. Yes indeed, this is a beer, that has been treated and aged like a champagne. Malheur Biere Brut is marketed in corked champagne bottles. After brewing, and aging, it is put on champagne racks, where it is riddled. The bottles are tilted and turned, in a traditional, labor intensive method, used to precipitate the yeast to the neck of the bottle. There it then goes through the process of degorgement, where the yeast collected in the neck is frozen, and expelled in a plug of ice. This is what is done with champagne, and now with one amazing beer as well. A beer this special, which comes in a corked 22.45 oz champagne bottle, should be treated as such. I didn't chill this beer in the fridge. I let is sit on ice in an ice bucket like a fine champagne, and served it in a champagne flute as well.
Malheur Biere Brut pours to a beautiful, very bright (clear) deep golden color with a pillowy white head, and a very vibrant carbonation. The nose on this beer is very perfumed, with aromas of lemon rind, peach, and vapors of peppery alcohol. The palate is smooth, refined, and silky, with strong flavors of peach and vanilla on the tongue, with a nice back drop of flowery flavors as well. Malheur Biere Brut finishes with a firm, dry after taste, with just a touch of peppery alcohol.
This beer is stunning. It is rare, unique, and really is as elegant as champagne. For a beer lover? This is better than champagne. Malheur Biere Brut, makes the ultimate aperitif, and would match well with oysters, or any dish you would pair champagne with. This is the perfect beer for a special occasion, and why not ring the New Year in with this one? For more information about this beer, or any other Malheur product visit their site at: http://www.malheur.be/