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Chez Monieux - Alpine Beer Company

Not Rated.
Chez MonieuxChez Monieux

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

180 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 180
Reviews: 71
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 19.03%
Wants: 65
Gots: 38 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Lambic - Fruit |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerBeing on 04-13-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 180 | Reviews: 71 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Deuane for sharing a bottle of this at his recent tasting party. Poured from a 750ml bottle on 3/21/09. Poured into my glass and appears a clear deep amber color with a pinkish hue topped by barely a finger of off - white foam. Smells and tastes like a huge bowl of vinegar soaked tart, sour cherries. Mouth puckering, pungent, funky, fruity, and spicy. Moderate carbonation with a medium body and a dry, dry finish. For me, a sour beer such as this is rather quenching, but I personally would never seek out another glass in an evening. Overall, a very decent first attempt on Alpine's part. It will be interesting to see what other sours come out of this brewery in the future.

ClockworkOrange, Mar 23, 2009
Photo of ffejherb
3.93/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into half pint. Thanks to Deuane for sharing.

A - Poured a hazy cherry-kissed amber with light carbonation and thin white head that disappeared and left virtually no lacing.

S - Very sour nose with some tart fruit (sour apples, cherry) as well as some vinegar and a magic marker scent.

T - Sour cherry notes with a mild vinegar presence. Tart and astringent with subtle woody/oak notes.

M - Medium body with bristly carbonation. Sour and tart on the tongue, providing quite a bit of pucker.

D - Very good take on the style, especially for their first try. While it's not one of my favorite styles, I found this to be nicely done and on the mark.

ffejherb, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of DefenCorps
4.05/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I think this was the last beer we cracked for day 2 of our epic tasting.

A: Crystal clear cherry red with a thin white head with OK retention. Clarity is brilliant.

S: Funk, earth, cherries, mildly musty, mildly tannic. Great balance between fruit, funk and sourness, not something I've encountered with more hyped American sours (Iron Hill and Upland, I'm looking at you)

T: Cherries, almost sweet with a dank, musty earthy flavor and tartness. Drying and tannic on the finish with a pleasant astringency and tartness. Not super-intense (like Cantillons) but still very tasty and enjoyable

M: Light, great carbonation, wonderful acidity and great finish

D: If not as pricey, I'd definitely have this again (and again)

DefenCorps, Jan 07, 2009
Photo of abfraser
3.38/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Beautiful beer. Burnt orange. Without trying to sound too lame, it's like a nice sunset.

S: Unique. Vanilla, cherry, a bit of funky old lambic.

T/M: Whoa. Lots of vanilla here. There's a nice cherry tartness, but the vanilla definitely dominates, lingering on the mouth even. Not a big fan of how much vanilla there is here. You can tell the cherry tartness underneath would have made a great beer. Just too much oak, in my humble opinion

D: Nicely drinkable given the tartness and low abv. But the vanilla makes it a little cloying after awhile. Can you see where I'm going with this review?

Very interesting and unique lambic-style beer. I don't think the vanilla from the oak meshes well here, but overall it was well worth a try.

abfraser, Jan 02, 2009
Photo of Mauerhan
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

picked this up at beverages for less a while back and it has been eyeing me everytime i open up my fridge. its about fucking time to crack this little bitch open.

pours a hazy orangey amber. with very little head.

smell is fruity. almost sour. i like it but im still not sure about it.

hmm

taste is sweet, to the point of being sour. its good. but im not sure if i love it. then again im not super hooked on a feeling with this style.

drinkable. good after taste. smooth. very little carbonation. overall im glad i tried it. im not sure its worth the 18 dollars paid for it. but meh.

Mauerhan, Jan 01, 2009
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.05/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 7/27/08. Bottle shared by beerbill. Pours an orange/red with a small white head. Aroma of funk, tart sour fruits (cherry), oak. Flavor is quite tart and oaky. Ok, nothing too exciting.
Aroma: 6/10
Appearance: 4/5
Flavor: 6/10
Palate: 3/5
Overall: 14/20
(3.3/5)

LilBeerDoctor, Dec 22, 2008
Photo of magictrokini
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours reddish copper, lots fo carbonation, and a flat white head. Vinuous cherry nose, some oak and malt, almost like a cherry cobbler. Pucker-type sour as opposed to the bretty-dank sour. Good blalance of the sour cherry and sweeter malt, tempered by the oak and vanilla flavors. A bit medicinal at times, but not enough to ruin the beer. Always a treat with Alpine.

magictrokini, Dec 04, 2008
Photo of weeare138
4.55/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to hopdog for this...
A play on words here, "Shame on you".
Appears a transparent, orange toned amber with a small white cap that quickly fades. Streaky lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of vanilla, cherries, cranberries, & dank horseblanket.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a standout fruit salad flavor that starts to take control of this brew.
Mouthfeel is creamy, citrusy, funky, tart, fruity, with an acidic finish.
I think I liked this more than anyone else that had it that night. Lovely, lovely beer.

weeare138, Dec 04, 2008
Photo of OStrungT
4.88/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours a pinkish brown coor, with a tiny white head that fades instantly, leaving no lace.

This beer smells of cherries. It has a nice sour aroma. Slight viniger, but good. It has a slight oaky aroma also.

This beer tastes like it smells. Sour, and great. Some tart cherries and some oak are present.

This beer is low in carbonation, fitting the style. It leaves a sour cherry aftertaste.

This beer would make an excelent session beer. It tastes great, and the alcohol content is low.

Overall: This beer is great. I love it, and I wish I had more. It was worth the wait. Way to go Alpine.

OStrungT, Nov 28, 2008
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.1/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle sampled side by side with Briscoe.

Yellow/orange/pink in appearance with a bubbly head on top that shows off the mellow carbonation here. Aromas bring strong acidic sour notes with vinegar accents upfront. Cherries are well placed along with woody oak. Stings the nose a bit.

Flavor starts with good cherry fruit that moves into acidic, tart funkiness. The mouth puckers as this one goes down with dry, woody oak tastes and even a touch of vanilla. Lingering vinegar fruitiness on the finish. Brace yourself for this one!

Mouthfeel is lighter with mellow carbonation. Goes down easily enough, just make sure you have some antacids nearby! A tasty interpretation of a kriek here, but I do agree that at $28 it was overpriced. A good bottle to share and I'm glad autumnaldave shared this one with me as I shared my Briscoe!

orbitalr0x, Nov 24, 2008
Photo of hopdog
4.2/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle.

Poured a medium orangish (with a pink tint) color with a small sized off white head. Aromas of cherry pie, some wood, vanilla, musty,and a trace of red wine. Tastes of cherries, wood, caramel, and bretty. Started lightly sweet and finishes tart.

Notes from 8/13/08

hopdog, Nov 11, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.33/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a red hue with a touch of white foam at the top. Nose is harshly sour with strong vinegar tones. Real strong antiseptic fragrance. Flavor is actually quite smooth. Sour and fruity, the cherries add a nice touch to a moderately sour brew. Definite barnyard funky on there as well. I also feel like I am getting vanilla here? Liquid is smooth and the carbonation is low. This is surprisingly easy to drink. The nose was advertising different, but it ends up being quite nice.

RblWthACoz, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of mentor
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light pink to the ring of white head over an orangish-red hazed liquid. Smells brett and marchino cherry extract. Acetic and lactic tartness. Birsuit malt. Dusty.

Tastes clean bright light cherry. Strong carbonation mies with tart from cherry and lifts the beer off the tongue so the finish dries. Almost an unripe cherry flavor. Lactic tart is not overbearing. Md-light body. Great summer quencher and good drinkability.

mentor, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of Crosling
3.48/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pinkish yellowish color. Small white head that unfortunately doesn't have any pink shades. Fairly nice nose with hints of cherries, as well as some wood. Flavor doesn't have a lot of depth, but has some nice elements of cherry , sourness and wood. Nice balance of sweet and sour. I like this ale quite a bit.

Crosling, Sep 06, 2008
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.58/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very interesting strawberry red color but with very little head. What there is fades almost immediately. Smells of tart cherries and a bit phenolic. A touch of almond and cream as well as a bit of funk. The taste is amazing, however. Bright, bright cherries followed by some acetic qualities and some light horseblanket funk that then fades into a beautiful cherry cream flavor. Very pure tasting, especially the fruit and the sour elements, but with just enough fruit to make it interesting. A bit of sweetness at the end rounds it out and gives it the slightest bit of cherry creamsicle flavor. Overall, though it is quite tart and not sweet. Mouthfeel is clean and pure and nicely sour. Very nice effort and definitely a bit different from other sours.

Georgiabeer, Jul 19, 2008
Photo of tpd975
3.88/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another fine gem provided by ibrew2or3

A: Pours a light rose pink hue with a thin fizzy head. The head dies immediatley and leaves no lace. There is some bubbles rising to the top from the active carbonation.

S: Nice sweet tart aroma. Hints of brett, cherris, and acid. The barrel does come thru with hints of oak, vanilla, and red wine.

T: Very much like the nose. The acidity is high on this beer, yet it remains drinkable. The cherries really come out and there is a nice sour blast exhibited. The oak plays a big role with the vanilla as a nice addition.

M: Light and sparkling.

D: Not the most drinkable but enjoyable.

Thanks Dave for plopping down the $$ for this one. It was one I wanted to try but had not sprung for.

tpd975, Jul 16, 2008
Photo of Oxymoron
4.75/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Hope my wife doesn't hear how much I paid for this one. Pours a more darker rose color than a traditional pink. Sparkling clarity. When initially poured left a fizzy pink head but quickly dissipated, but ok for style.

The nose has a sourness that is more along the lines of acetic acid with maybe a slight hint of brett notes. The cherries come out nicely with more of a sweeter marciano cherry with a sweeter tart note. Some lighter woody notes with a light vanilla and oaky finish. Both cherry and woody notes come out more as it warms adding a bit of complexity.

The taste follows suit with a nice blend of cherry and lambic tart. More acetic acid flavor/feel but blends well with the sweeter cherry notes. No really brett flavors as the nose indicated. I would have liked the complexity in the malt. But the fruity notes come out and add their own complexity. They come out more with tart cherry flavor versus sweet. Some really nice winey characteristics with other tropical fruit flavors in the finish. As it warmed though, more port with some woody and complexity in the body. Some minor white pepper notes as well. Interesting to see the change from cool to warm.

The body is dry with a nice tart finish. Very light carbonation as per style. Overall a fun beer for the palate. A lot of hidden descriptors to really enjoy. The cherries real add a depth to this beer. And as the beer warms the wood characteristic add even more complexity and intensity that really a fun beer to drink. Even the wifey enjoyed.

Oxymoron, Jul 14, 2008
Photo of vince4953529
4.9/5  rDev +31.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

$28 from South Bay Drugs, 5.8% abv on the label.

Appearance: Gorgeous light pink upon pouring, a hue of orange emerged as my tulip becomes full.

Smell: tart, cherryish

Taste: wow, tart sour upon tasting, I got red wine, cranberries, a tad creamy upon finishing.

Mouthfee: sour, but not that sour as a RR sour brew. Refreshing, carbonation is done just perfectly fine. supremely exceptional.

Drinkability: amazing, I can drink this all night long. I rarely say this, but the hefty $28 is well spent. Not over hyped at all. One of the best beers I've had this year!!

vince4953529, Jul 13, 2008
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.53/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Gford217: Poured a light red color ale with a light pink bubbly head with some average retention and no lacing. Aroma consists of red wine and tart notes with some light sour cherries. Taste is a mix between some sour cherries, with some tart notes with loads of oak and some red wine notes. Average carbonation with limited funk notes when I was expecting a lot more from the description. Overall, I though this was easily drinkable and maybe a bit light for the kind of beer it would like to be.

Phyl21ca, Jul 07, 2008
Photo of fumner
4.47/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Picked up a bottle not too long ago from SBD&L, thanks go to Joey. Split this with my Dad to celebrate the 4th of July.

Pours a beautiful pinkish color with a bit of orange around the edges, with a soft white head that apparently wasn't meant to live in this world. Many little effervescent bubbles are rushing to the surface. No lacing on this one.

My first smell was very sour. Lots of acetic acid and minimal hints of cherries. As the beer warmed, however, the cherries became the dominant smell. But not your typical sweet-candied cherry smell, this is the smell of the juiciest, ripest, tart cherries that are what you dream of on a hot summer day. Fantastic.

Similar to the smell, my first taste misled me a bit. With my first sip, there was a rush of sourness that dominated my palate, which quickly gave way to cloying sweetness, which then left with a trace of cherry and red wine. It seemed unbalanced. Weirdly, one sip later and my impression changed dramatically. Lush, tart, cherries, just like the smell. But now with a more lactic acid sour, and the wine-barrel notes smooth it out nicely. There was some distinct sweetness, which normally is my least favorite characteristic of a lambic, but here it complements the sour cherry perfectly. As it warmed the sweetness faded, and more musty barrel notes showed up.

The carbonation on this was great at first, but it dissipated a bit too quickly for my tastes. With just a slightly thicker presence, this beer would capture the essence of the cherry perfectly.

My rating criteria for drinkability is as follows: if I desperately want to drink more when I'm done with my bottle, it gets a top notch score. This is a 5, at least.

As much as it pains my wallet, I will be seeking out another bottle of this beer. It's worth it.

fumner, Jul 05, 2008
Photo of JDV
2.78/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a thin reddish, almost rosy pink color. Smell is lightly creamy butterscotch and sour cherry. Taste is thin and tart cherries. Definitely shows sign of tartness, but still feels overly simplistic, like thin juice, and doesn't have any funky complexity or anything. A certain amount of acidity and dryness in the finish as well, but also has a faint buttery finish to it, perhaps from the diacetyl, too. While this wasn't terrible, I cant say I enjoyed it, with or without consideration of the price.

JDV, Jul 01, 2008
Photo of mikesgroove
4.63/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I finally grabbed a bottle of this from Joey at South bay, the price was high, and so I naturally had very high hops for this one. One of my favorite styles, I was very interested to see what kind of take they could do on it. Nice 750ml bottle, looked almost Belgian in design, with a cool label as well. I let this one chill out in the fridge for a couple of days and then served it last night at a touch above fridge temp in my now infamous Terrapin snifter that seems to get every single last beer that I try as of late.

Appearance - The pour was very nice, taking on the appearance of a rose pink soda of sorts. The color was very nice, that light reddish, pink, rose color was sublime and it really made the pour very interesting. Some nice touches of carbonation were bubbling up throughout the session, giving hop that this would be an active brew. A very small, maybe a half inch high head of off white, slightly reddish tinted foam came up over the top at the initial pour, however this did not last long at all, and soon it faded away to nothing, leaving only the slightest touch of white lace around the sides, that was for lack of a better word unremarkable. Still, for the color alone this one gets high marks as it really did look the part.

Smell - The aroma was dominated by cherries, no surprised here. The first time I smelled it I got hit with that dark, sour note of cherry that was as advertised, however, it was upon letting this one warm up that the real magic began to happen. It seemed with each degree of warmth it got a touch sweeter, with the sour notes intermingling and you could almost feel the whole thing swirling around throughout. It was not so one sided with cherries as one might have thought, rather there was a nice subtle spiciness that started to come through on the smell. Hints of pepper and vanilla were to be found, all the while remaining very light and fruity, and again going further and further over to the sweeter side of the spectrum. By the time I finished this one, it had transformed into the sweetest, cherry aroma you could imagine, really well done here. On par with the likes of LA's Red Poppy for sure.

Taste - The flavor was equally as remarkable. This was by no means a funky, Brett laced sour ale. That is the first thing you needed to keep in mind while trying it, as it is not supposed to be. What it was is a wonderful cherry Kriek that is put together beautifully. I would have thought the filtered nature of this might have detracted from the flavor, but it did not as far as I could tell anyway. Started out with a rush of tart cherry, giving the slightest puckering to the lips before falling over the tongue. Swishing it around lets the tartness fade and a sweeter, lighter cherry flavor take its place. As you swallow, there is touch of pepper like sweetness that starts to come through, I thought this was very nice and added a great deal of depth to it, even tingling the tongue at times. Hints of a slight wine or grape like flavor are there way in the back, no doubt a relic of the barrel aging which also contributes some of the oak like flavors to it and a touch of vanilla, that while not really a main contributor to the overall profile, merged well with the pepper and really brought it out nicely. The finish was short and sweet, with a slight touch of drying and the long lingering flavor of dark cherry and spices.

Mouthfeel - The eel was nice, albeit a little flatter then I would have liked to have seen. It was definitely a light bodied ale, my only wish would have been that the slightest more carbonation have been added to this one as I really think it would have made a great deal of difference overall and would have really improved the overall profile. Still though, there was some light carbonation and the flavor was definitely rich enough to carry the whole thing through for me.

Drinkability - An outstanding drinker this was one I wished would never have ended. The low ABV lended itself well to being session able, however the profile was soo full that you could only help but take little sips, cherishing each one as they swirled around, really letting the complexity of this sink in. That being said, I could have easily polished off another bottle without a care.

Overall I would have to say this one was excellent. Was it worth $28 a bottle, I am not sure, however I will tell you this, I would most certainly buy another one. I think this is something everyone should get to try. It is rare to see an American brewer but forth such a quality effort in this style, and this was simply outstanding. I cannot wait to get to try it again. One of the best I have had.

mikesgroove, Jun 04, 2008
Photo of MiScusi
4.33/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear, dark pinkish red color with a light rose head that fades really fast. The smell is tart at first, but after that it is big on the sweet and sour cherry. You get both components, but mostly a sour cherry smell. The taste is nice and moderately acidic, cherry there unmistakably. The mouthfeel on this beer is very light and effervescent. I actually wouldn't have minded a fraction higher body on this. Really a good and interesting sour beer to drink. Not as complex as I would think, but pretty straight forward as far as acid + cherry goes. Tasty beer.

MiScusi, May 23, 2008
Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.22/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Alpine Beer Company Chez Monieux
750 mL brown bottle (capped)

A: poured into a snifter. Pours a crsip bright, vibrant orangish red. just a dash of orange. Nice rose color head that dissipates rather quickly. low head retention rate and a fair amount of lacing.

S: nice solid cherry aroma, with a serious amount of vanilla. I can pull some of the oak barrels adn the red wine. nice sour aroma.

T: very tart cherry flavor. I am tasting some serious oak in this as well. Great lactic acid sours. In the finish, i get some of that vanilla, and a little bit of that red wine.

M: very sweet and crisp, with some nice tartness. mild body and a light carbonation level.

D: After the initial sip, and I was skeptical about paying $27 a bottle for this. Good thing no one I know likes lambics, so I had to drink the entire bottle. This gave me and the beer some time to "warm" up to each other. This was a great treat, but probably a one time deal for me at the price. Give it a shot, but share the weath...my only regret.

paulthebeerguru, May 21, 2008
Photo of seaoflament
4.33/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared a bottle with Joey (thanks for bringing a bottle) and Tony from La Bella's in Chula Vista last night.

Poured the color of cherry 7-up with some fizzy carbonation. The aroma was of tart cherries, really good cherries, and also lots of vinegar, vinous with wine qualities from the barrels, and the oak coming in near the finish. As the beer warmed up Joey and Tony mentioned it getting some buttery aroma but I didn't detect much, probably drank mine too quickly. The taste was of tart cherries, salt, vinegar and the oak in the finish just like in the aroma.

This is a very good beer and I would love to drink it again but the price is a big setback (around $28 a bottle). I'd say that Alpine did a good job with this beer.

seaoflament, May 21, 2008
Chez Monieux from Alpine Beer Company
84 out of 100 based on 180 ratings.