Hey, it's 9:30 p.m. as I started writing this, and it looks like that so-called Rapture never happened. But hey, to paraphrase Alan Jackson, it's always "six o'clock somewhere." We still have Hawa'ii and Samoa to hear from. So I feel like breaking a beer out of my cellar, which may have to sustain me until the very end five months later. And which is the most appropriate beer for the end of the world?
"La Fin du Monde," from Quebec's Unibroue. It's categorized as a tripel, one of the styles originated by the Trappist monks who brew in Belgium. The beer should pour pale, with extra brewing sugar, and a strong malty taste. Additionally, Unibroue bottles the beer "on lees," meaning a dose of yeast is put in each bottle so it continues fermentation. The beer is 9% alcohol by volume at bottling, though very little extra horsepower would be created by the extra yeast. Mine was bought in 2007, and may have gone through some interesting changes. Let's find out:
The beer pours out a slightly brassy gold in my tulip glass. I held back on pouring the yeast from the bottom of the glass, so the beer is relatively clear. The head in this bottle is fizzy, and dwindles away quickly. The smell is sweet, with notes of orange peel and a bit of spice. A nice warming bit of alcohol runs around my tongue. I had another 2007 batch back in 2008, and at that time I noted a bit of Belgian yeast funk - that lovers of the style call "horseblanket," and the "staled" old hops, left to age and minimize the malt sweetness only slightly. In the current bottle, the sweetness remains strong, but not too sugary, and any hops stay in the background. Pouring the last bit from the bottle, with the yeast, per the procedure for Belgian beers, shows just a little cloudiness. No dead yeast to taste here. Just a littlelast dreg of a nice dessert style beer.
And as I finish writing this up, it's just after 10:20 p.m. in Chicago. Still no naked people floating in the sky. Frankly, I would think God would be less interested in the people who do nothing but stand on a hill waiting to be "saved" from a cruel world than in those who were trying to make the world better. Just sayin.' And if all this talk about La Fin du Monde (French for "The End of the World," if you didn't know yet, you could seek out Unibroue's Don de Dieu ("Gift of God").
And yes, the beers of Unibroue are available in Chicago, some as near as your local Trader Joe's for which Unibroue also makes their annual Trader Joe's Vintage Ale.