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Abbaye De Saint Bon-Chien Grand Cru (Aged In Trousseau Barrels) - BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)

Not Rated.
Abbaye De Saint Bon-Chien Grand Cru (Aged In Trousseau Barrels)Abbaye De Saint Bon-Chien Grand Cru (Aged In Trousseau Barrels)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

58 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 58
Reviews: 45
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 14
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes) visit their website
Switzerland

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: JohnQVegas on 05-22-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 58 | Reviews: 45 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bryanbrick
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Got the last one of these from the batch we got into work. Opened it at the behest of d0b and my desire to toast Arturo Gatti's passing. Long live the champ! From a 375ml that was filled to about a ¼ inch from the cap. Dated "Brewed in May 2008." Served this too cold had to let it warm to just about room temperature before it started to sing.

I'm a tad worried about the condition of the bottle. I'm sure this is meant to be a low carbonated beer but this has none. Like it didn't even hiss as I took of the cap. My review may be a tad suspect, but as a famous wine writer once wrote "There are no great wines, just great bottles" or something like that. This beer pours with a few white rimmed bubbles and then quickly nothing, a swirl of the glass, nothing. A pleasing hue of tan, chestnut maybe, with a sort of ruby tint.

The nose is meadow-y, all grass and fresh blooming flowers. Very pasture like funk with the barn animals all home for good measure. As this warms it takes on many more similarities to Trousseau, with its winy red currant and cranberry fruits and more of the warm trodden soil. It also has a highlight of redwood in there somewhere and pretty dried rose note. Very expressive stuff.

I can't say I liked this at first, but it is one that grows on you. The next thing you know you are looking around for another 375ml to down. Plus this is contemplative stuff. You have to pay attention to what is going on, this just doesn't just come out and rip off all its clothes and say look at me. You have to do some coaxing, whisper some sweet nothings.
Tobacco, whole clove, dried raspberry and a whole lot of funky lactic acid are easily apparent here. The beer is wildly complex and full of action, everything bouncing around quickly but the flavors staying with you long after it is gone. This has plenty of the sour, yet bitter qualities similar to fresh cranberries. Add the winy, earthy Trousseau qualities and it becomes something alive. I love the sour, fruity, tart mid-palate here and the bitter, earthy finish.

The carbonation, or complete lack there of hurts this for me a bit. But I really like the high off-setting puckering acid as opposed to the muscular, sinewy frame. This makes sense to me being that I love wines from the Arbois and their sneaky power and teetering acid. But that may not make sense to anyone else.

At first I was on the fence with this but you need to drink it to become sold on it. The more you drink the more it all comes together and makes sense. I could easily put back 2-3 of these just trying to dissect them. The 11% ABV is hidden well and I always feel that sours, at least for me, are sort of a restorative both to the palate and the brain.

bryanbrick, Jul 12, 2009
Photo of HopHead84
4.8/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

TR3 - 375ml bottle. 2008 Vintage. Poured into my Bruery snifter. Thanks to largadeer for grabbing this for me. Pours vibrant Venetian red with ruby notes when held to the sun. The beer is uncarbonated, so the few bubbles that materialize are the result of a vigorous pour, but they evanesce quickly.

The aroma is of wood, tannins, and red wine notes. Tart and sour cherries are evident, along with grape skins and acetic acid. I notice a certain mustiness to the nose, but it's not reminiscent of Brett. As the beer approaches 60 degrees, I detect faint notes of vanilla and some lactic character. There's some sweetness but the pendulum swings unmistakably toward tartness. The 11% ABV is completely hidden in the nose.

The taste is something to be celebrated. I've loved every incarnation of Bon-Chien, but this Trousseau is possibly my favorite. It's very sour and tart, almost puckeringly so. Tannin and wood notes are quite strong. The fruit character is as it was in the nose: cherries, grapes, and possibly currants. The flavor is vinous with ephemeral sweetness that segues back to tart and sour. The lactic notes are apparent, and the alcohol is almost completely hidden. The finnish is sour, with lingering cherries and grapes.

The beer is medium bodied with absolutely no carbonation, but I've always found the absence of carbonation very well suited to the Bon-Chiens. It's really a shame they went from the 1.5L bottles to these 375ml bottles. I'd love to have a magnum of this beer. Seek this out if you've enjoyed the others, this is my favorite of the barreled Bon-Chiens.

HopHead84, Jul 11, 2009
Photo of WeisGuy
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - pours a deep rusty burgundy color. slightly cloudy on second pour, no head and very few bubbles, looks almost like wine

s - some sour apple mixed with oak up front on the nose, some alcohol evident, creamy vanilla notes, a little blackberry jam, slight leather aroma

t - nice sour cherry punch up front with some vinegar, mix of sweet, tart and sour, rounds out on the mid-palate with the oak barrels being prominent, dark fruits mixed with cream and vanilla layers on top of the oak, tartness trails into the finish with lingering oak and sour cherry, a little bit of alcohol heat on the finish, but nothing that would suggest 11+% abv.

m - medium-bodied with very low carbonation, not overly dry on the palette

d - a sipper for sure, but this one is fairly easy on the palette relative to some other sour ales, the oak aging really seems to soften the sourness and tartness

Very good beer overall, though the $17 price tag will probably keep me from getting another bottle anytime soon. Great one to split with another sour lover.

WeisGuy, Jun 29, 2009
Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

TR3.

Appearance: Brilliantly clear ruby-amber, a sort of sunset hue. No carbonation and no head.

Smell: Big vinous red wine notes from the barrel along with a good bit of esters from the yeast; cherries, figs, plums. A bit of mustiness and vanilla come out as it warms.

Taste & mouthfeel: A melange of sweet and tart fruits (strawberry, cherry pie filling, figs) hit the palate first, slowly transforming into more vinous, tannic and earthy/leathery flavors. There's a bit of balsamic-like acetic acid in the otherwise clean finish, lending a touch of tartness. The lack of carbonation brings this one step closer to wine; a true hybrid beer, and an amazing one at that.

largadeer, Jun 21, 2009
Photo of craytonic
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

TR3:

Appearance: Pours a still ruby/mahogany

Smell: Some sort of red wine, leather, vinegar, tart cherry, balsamic vinegar with honey.

Taste: Delicious. Red wine, leather, vinegar, tart cherry, balsamic vinegar, honey. Like a barleywine on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Dry and Still

Drinkability: Exceptional; much better than I expected. Hard to put the glass down. Wish this one was in the larger bottles.

It is hard to rate this one, so much of the appearance and mouthfeel of a beer comes from the carbonation; but this one is intentionally still. I wished it had a bit to it and rated it as such. I prefer this to the regular version.

craytonic, Jun 21, 2009
Photo of merlin48
3.65/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

335 ml handbottled in January of 2009, served slightly chilled. Pours into a tulip a murky orange/brown body with no head or lacing. The body is still.

Aroma has musty oak, tart cherry skins, cider vinegar, leathery tannins, and a pronounced vinous note.

Mouthfeel has a light medium body with minimal carbonation.

Taste reminds me of Panil Barriquee, an Italian version of a Flanders Red. This one is much more akin to a wine than a beer. Sour and tart green apple skins accented with balsamic vinegar, is how I would sum it up. Leathery tannins add an acidic note. No real malt or hop character. Lots of musty oak aging character. Finishes very dry.

This is not a biere de garde. It's a Flanders Red or, possibly, a lambic. The aging in trousseau casks adds a pleasant musty oak character. I wish I had laid this one down for a couple of years so I might have gained more of an appreciation for its complexity.

merlin48, Jun 10, 2009
Photo of grayburn
4.8/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Got this based on a recommendation despite the price tag....worth every freaking penny.

The beer pours a hazy orange with some yellow edging, little head to speak of goes away quickly, doesn't lace per se, but leaves some nice vinous legs.

The smell and taste start off very funky, but there are some hidden green apple notes that end up dominating and really playing a good role front and center.

The mouthfeel is so complex, bouncing between sweet, sour, and bone-dry. Excellent transitioning between.

I could drink this all night, freaking amazing beer.

grayburn, Jun 09, 2009
Photo of JohnQVegas
4.8/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

375ml bottle into red wine glass. Cask ID TR3.

Pours hazy copper with a reddish glow, no carbonation or head, just a rim of big bubbles around the outside of the glass.

Nose is nicely tart, bit of vinegar, lactic, brown sugar, red grape skins, a sharp red fruit note - sour cherries or (closer) currants. Rich and vinous underneath the lightly acidic tart note. Jesus is it hard to make out everything going on in this one. The barrel definitely comes out as well, but lightly.

Taste is surprisingly smooth. No real sour bite up front. Instead, you a get a softly sour lactic note and a metric ton of round, mellow red fruits (red grapes and currants are prominent), some brown sugar, with the Trousseau barrel coming out quite prominently in my opinion. There's a light butteriness to it in both taste and feel that's so unique. Some tannins on the finish, a bit musty, a bit of wet leather on the exhale. Utterly fantastic. Possibly my favorite single experience with Bon-Chien, and I've had quite a few. An absolutely sublime beer.

Mouthfeel is still, but a bit silky and buttery, round. Delicious, with just a bit of acidic bite in the back of the throat.

Going all out on drinkability. Not a hint of booze, and tasting like this, I could drink this forever and ever. Phenomenal.

My love of Bon-Chien isn't hidden, but this may be my favorite variant yet. Get it while you can!

JohnQVegas, May 22, 2009
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Abbaye De Saint Bon-Chien Grand Cru (Aged In Trousseau Barrels) from BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)
92 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.