Tag Archives: Porter

How to and how not to hand model + 2 from La Succarsale

How to and how not to hand model
+ 2 from La Succarsale

There are times when it is just not possible to easily take a picture of a beer.  Times when it is necessary to request aid from a friend who will help you document your year of alcoholism.  This post is a thank you to everyone who has held a beer while I try to take a decent picture (see the list of names below – thank you all*).  It is also a friendly middle finger to those who try to hinder me at every opportunity (you know who you are).

How to and how not to hand model

Good hand modelling is not difficult.  The important thing is to hold the beer so that you can see any logos and so that your hand does not cover too much of the beer.  Examples…

It is also possible to get some interesting pictures and effects with effective hand modelling.  Examples…

However, people are also tempted to hand model or interfere in other less useful ways.  Examples…

2 from La Succarsale

What good fortune that a friend who has just moved back to Montreal has moved less than thirty seconds from a micro-brewery!

No. 416 – La Succarsale 1814 Porter
2017-10-28 - 416 - La Succarsale 1814 Porter _500beers

A fine porter with a warm milk chocolate aroma.  It does not quite follow up on this promise, but it is a decent porter that I would recommend.  Oddly refreshing after a twenty minute walk at full speed.  6/11

No. 417 – La Succarsale Vienna Lager
2017-10-28 - 417 - La Succarsale Vienna Lager _500beers

Somewhat dark looking for a lager, it felt more like a standard blond ale.  I should have started with this rather than the porter as it was a good beer that I found refreshing.  It won’t be high up in the reckoning of the best beer at the end of the year, but I would definitely recommend giving it a go if you are in the area and fancy something refreshing.  5/11

I have had one other beer at La Succarsale and will probably try one or two more before the end of the year – it’s a promising place, no bad beers yet.

*In alphabetical order for convenience, it’s no comment on your skills as a model…
Alice, Charlotte, David, Declan, Elspeth, Éric, Jess, Jordan, Moussa, Rachid, Sophie

 

Nos. 176 – 181 – Vices & Versa

Nos. 176 – 181 – Vices & Versa

After having written about Birra, it makes sense to look at a few beers I tried in another bar in little Italy with a great selection of beers.  I tried these in early June, therefore I don’t have too much to write (a good thing from time to time), but I recall a couple of them being somewhat special…

No. 176 – Dieu du Ciel Gaélique

2017-06-07 - 176 - Dieu du Ciel Gaelique Cream Ale _500beers

It has become something of a ritual to start with a cream ale or a stout over the last few months.  This one in particular was a very good choice.  It is a finely balanced sweet fruity cream ale with an aftertaste that brought memories of drinking dandelion and burdock lemonade many, many years ago.  This therefore is not only a good beer but one that also evokes memories for me – indeed I recall at the time having to text my mum to ask what the drink my dad used to buy was as I couldn’t quite put my finger on it.  It gets an 8/11 for being good, accurate, worth the price, having something special, for drink-again-ability, recommend-ability and I would go out of my way for it, and go out in a snowstorm or a heat-wave.

No. 177 – Brasserie Dunham Berliner Mango Weisse

2017-06-07 - 177 - Dunham Berliner Mango Weisse _500beers

So that was a really good start, what could possibly go wrong?

I’m not generally a fan of sour beers in this style but over the course of the summer I’ve had one or two which have been good.  This one was not.  Maybe it was a bad pint – but it was overwhelmingly sour and finishing it was a chore.  I’m generously giving it 2.5/11 for accuracy, being different and for the fact that I would recommend it, to someone I don’t like.

No. 178 – Le Trou du Diable Maiden Shawi

2017-06-07 - 178 - Le Trou de Diable Maiden Shawi _500beers

And back to good beers again…

This is a pretty good brown ale of a standard I’ve come to expect from Le Trou du Diable recently, having tried several more of their beers at home.  It has a toasty aroma with caramel coming through strongly and this is reflected nicely in the flavour.  The picture doesn’t do it justice as it looks gorgeous too.  An easy 6/11 for being good, accurate, worth the price, I’d drink it again, recommend it and I’d go out of my way for it.

No. 179 – Les 3 Mousquetaires Blonde Helles

2017-06-07 - 179 - Les 3 Mousquetaires Blonde Hellos _500beers

My notes for this and the next one total four words.  This one is a ‘fine blonde,’ and I’m going to leave it at that – 4/11.

No. 180 – Microbrasserie Charlevoix Kläss Lager

2017-06-07 - 180 - Microbrasserie Charlevois Klass _500beers

And this one is a ‘great lager.’

Lager seems to be difficult for north Americans to get right – either that or my European sensibilities were already warped before I got here.  In any case, I drank lager almost exclusively for seven or eight years and am still searching for a really good one that is worthy of being in my top twenty beers at the end of this year.  This one is so far one of the best.  I’m giving it 6.5/11 for being good, accurate, worth the price, for drink-again-ability, for recommend-ability, I’d go out of my way for a pint or five and I’m giving it 0.5 for luck.

No. 181 – Pit Caribou La Gaspésienne Porter

2017-06-07 - 181 - Pit Caribou La Gaspésienne _500beers

I asked the server to surprise me with this one so it took me a while to figure out exactly what beer it was and from which microbrewery.  I’m pretty confident that this is the correct information, though the beer seems a little too stouty to be a porter.  It’s a very creamy, almost milky porter with a nice aftertaste.  From memory, it felt like a porter except for the head.  Maybe it’s one of those really good hybrids, the best of both worlds.  It gets a 7/11 for being good, accurate, worth the price, for drink-again-ability, recommend-ability, I’d go out of my way for it and I’d go out in a snowstorm for it.

So four really good beers out of six, a pretty good return for an evening out.  I’d recommend Vices & Versa, you could almost do a mini pub crawl on St. Laurent with it and Birra!

Laval Beer Festival, part 1

Laval Beer Festival,  part 1

The second of my monthly trips to beer festival within striking distance of Montréal.  Firstly, a quick note on the festival itself…

This is a much less expensive alternative to the beer festival in Montreal.  The admission plus a glass was less than the price of a glass in Montreal and the samples all seemed to be less expensive and somewhat more generous.  Maybe this will change with time as popularity grows but for now I know which festival I will go back to next year.  It is also in a park a little bit out of the way, but easily accessible by public transport which is free with a pre-sale ticket for the day, so the ‘would I go out of my way for it’ question is particularly relevant to these beers.

Nos. 234, 241 & 242 – Brasseurs Illimité’s Session Mango, Imperial Cherry Stout and Mastoc Porter

Session Mango – I started out the day with a light fruity beer after having strolled the majority of the way there in the blistering heat (anything about 20c is blistering for me).  A little hoppy, a little fruity and a little fizzy.  A nicely balanced IPA style beer which worked well as a thirst quencher.  It’s getting 5.5/11 because it’s good, worth the price, accurate, I’d drink it again and I’d recommend it.  The extra 0.5 is there as it is better than the average IPA but I think 6/11 is a stretch.

Imperial Cherry Stout – this is a great beer.  The aroma is strong, like cherry and chocolate, deep and rich and the taste follows up perfectly.  It has the texture of a porter and lacks the warmth of a stout so I’d think of it more as a porter.  There were also hints of caramel the further I got into it.  But I won’t hold that against it.  I would fight a bear for this.  9/11

Mastoc Porter – another very good beer here.  A scotch porter (I like these hybrid names) with a standard porter aroma.  The pleasure in this one comes from the chocolate flavour that coats the front of the mouth.  It’s a little creamy and thick for a porter.  There is a warmth from the hint of scotch ale that balances out the beer nicely in the throat.  This easily gets an 8/11, I’d go out in a snowstorm, but I’d let the bear have his beer.

Nos. 235, 244 & 245 – Le Trefle Noir’s L’Été Des Indiens, La Gosebuster and Le Chernoe Pivo

L’Été des Indiens – I had fun with the auto-correct on my phone while making notes on this ‘Eternal Indien,’ which was ‘Gratuitous’ with the beautiful Le Trefle Glass that you can see above.  The beer itself was a treat.  I very good blond ale, thicker than most others I’ve tried but not heavy, almost a creamy texture to it.  An easy 7/11.

La Gosebuster – I was advised that this may not be entirely to my taste but had to give it a go anyway.  It’s somewhat sour and tastes of bitter fruits.  This is not as bad as the other one or two sours drinks I’ve tried up to now but still gets a lower mark.  0.5 of a yes each for being good and for the price, a yes for the description and a yes for being a little different.  3/11

Le Chernoe Pivo – Another imperial stout and my final beer at the festival – another great one.  This has that pure coffee aroma that I have grown to love in great stouts this year.  The bubbly head lasted a long time in the sun and tasted like that froth you get at the end of a good cappuccino.  Taste-wise it was smooth, well balanced and warm – a rich roasted coffee taste which lived up to the promise of a great beer to come made by that aroma.  I’d fight a bear for this one – I’d punch him right on the snout!  9/11.

So that’s the first six, the next six are a bit more of a mixed bag but there are some decent beers in there all the same.

 

 

No. 143 – Le Trefle Noir Quadriporter

No. 143 – Le Trefle Noir Quadriporter

The word ‘smoked’ brings back memories of hearing or saying the phrase ‘it’s very fumé indeed’ a lot at a drinking session in the past and of scrubbing my mouth to try to get rid of the taste of smoky beer the morning after.  I am therefore always sceptical when I see this word in relation to beer.  However, so far I have not gone wrong with a beer from Le Trefle Noir…

DSC_3531

It has all the qualities of a porter with a subtle smoky hint that comes through nicely in the aftertaste.  My first thoughts when drinking it were ‘rich’ and ‘subtle’, two words that don’t necessarily go together.

It’s pours beautifully and settles with a medium bubbly head and the aroma is that of a fine porter with hints of chocolate and coffee.  There was a surprising fizz on the tongue at the first gulp, which is strange for this kind of beer – presumably this is from the smoked rye.  Despite this, the taste makes me think of burnt coffee (something I used to do a lot as a barista).  The smoked rye flavour comes through subtly in the aftertaste and was surprisingly good.

2017-05-12 - 143 - Le Trefle Noir Quadriporter desc. _500beers

To the ratings…

Yes, it is good!

Yes, it was worth $5.50!

Yes, I would drink it again!

Yes, I would recommend it!

Yes, it matches it’s description!

Yes, it has something a little different about it!

Yes, I’d go a block or two out of my way for it!

7/11

Another stout/porter with another good mark and another Le Trefle Noir with a good mark.

 

 

Sleeman’s Selection, Nos. 104-107 and 109-110

Sleeman’s Selection

Trying saying Sleeman’s Selection quickly ten times in a row.  Anyway…

I picked up this selection pack from my nearest dépanneur because it was only about ten dollars.  Each of these beers therefore gets a yes for the price.

No. 104 – Sleeman’s Cream Ale

2017-04-04 - 104 - Sleeman's Cream Ale label _500beers
This is a decent beer, not the best cream ale I’ve had so far but by no means a bad beer.  This will be a theme for this selection.

It gets a Yes for being good, well it’s not bad so that’s a given.  It’s got a Yes for the price and for another Yes for the description.  I’d drink it again so that’s a fourth Yes, and at the price Yes I’d recommend it to.  So that’s five Yeses – which by now means, it’s ok, but nothing special.    5/11

No. 105 – Sleeman’s Silver Creek Lager

2017-04-05 - 105 - Sleeman's Silver Creek Lager reflet _500beers
Again, this is a decent lager, without having anything special about it.  Like the Cream Ale, it’s going to get five out of eleven for being good, cheap, accurate, recommendable at this price and something that I would drink again.   5/11

 

 

No. 106 – Sleeman’s Fine Porter

2017-04-05 - 106 - Sleeman's Fine Porter bottle _500beers
This is indeed a fine porter.

Of the six beers in the selection pack this was the one that stood out as the best.  It was a smooth well balanced stout, that was very easy to drink and that quenched my thirst perfectly.  Score-wise it gets the same five yeses as the previous two beers, but I would consider going out of my way for it if I was in the mood.  So I’m giving it six.    6/11

 

No. 107 – Sleeman’s Railside Session Ale

2017-04-06 - 107 - Sleeman's Railside Session Ale reflet _500beers
Not really a lot to say on this one.  It was a little bland compared to the others in the selection and to the majority of other beers I’ve tried so far.  But having said that, it is ok so it notches up four Yeses, for being good (ok at least), cheap and accurate and I’d probably try it again.   4/11

 

 

 

No. 109 – Sleeman’s Spiced Ale

2017-04-08 - Sleeman's Spiced Ale _500beers

Very similar to the Railside Session Ale, but with a little more flavour.  I can’t honestly remember anything more about this one, which tells me that it was ok but again nothing special.  I’ve given it five Yeses for being good, cheap, accurate (there is a hint of something different in the flavour, but I can’t remember what and it wasn’t enough to gain an extra yes for being interesting or different) and recommendable (at a cheap price).  I would also give it another go.    5/11

No. 110 – Sleeman’s India Pale Ale

2017-04-09 - 110 - Sleeman's IPA bottles _500beers
I don’t like IPAs, so I left this one for last.  It was actually pretty good, but did not taste like most IPAs I’ve had so far.  This somewhat confuses the accuracy/being different questions in my marking scheme.

In all honesty, I would find it difficult to tell at least four of these beers apart.  This one gets four Yeses for being good, cheap, recommendable and I would try it again. 4/11

This for ten dollars is a pretty consistent selection of beers.  If I were to try any of them again, I would definitely go for the Porter first.  It’s becoming clear just over a fifth of the way through the challenge that I like stout.