Quick Take: Rocky Patel Olde World Reserve Maduro and Orval

Based on the Steelers’ performance thus far, I thought it best to distract myself with a quality beer and cigar for the remainder of the Super Bowl. (Oh cripes, another interception.) Adding insult to injury, I fired up a Rocky Patel, forgetting that Rocky is a major cheese head.

But give the man his due.  RPs seldom disappoint (geez, another touchdown by Green Bay) and this stick is mighty tasty.  Zero harshness and a nice complex presentation.  A 92 on The Morris Scale.

I’ve previously reviewed the Orval, and it remains one of my favorite beers.  Here’s what I said last time, so you don’t need to go searching:

You may not give much thought to the yeast used to make your beer, but it can make a huge difference in the taste.  If you have ever made your own beer, you may be familiar with a yeast called Brettanomyces, or “Brett” for short, that is normally viewed as a contaminant.  This yeast comes from wood, and can feed on wood, which can be a problem for breweries that ferment in casks.

But in the proper hands, Brett can be used to add distinctive flavors to beer, and is used in some sour beer styles.  If you want to experience a Brett beer (not in a sour style), Orval is the only Trappist monastery that uses Brett in its the beer making process.

The taste of the Orval Trappist Ale is amazing, especially if you take the time to really smell the beer before you take your first taste.  The aroma of Brett beer is sometimes described as damp wool.  The Orval smell is slightly citrus as well, but very distinctive, and totally belies what you are about to experience.

This Belgium Trappist ale pours a golden brown with a frothy tan head so thick you could suspend a cherry on top if you were so inclined.  The wild Brett yeast brings an earthy taste, that is at the same time sweet, dry and citrusy.  The yeast taste was oddly reminiscent of the horrible yeasty beer I created during my first home brewing attempts, but in this case it is a perfectly balanced addition.

You need to experience this beer.  It’s a little pricey at $4.79 for an 11.2 ounce bottle, but this is a true experience.  Draft magazine rightfully rated this beer at 98.

As to the Super Bowl? Well at least I can watch the commercials.

2 Responses to “Quick Take: Rocky Patel Olde World Reserve Maduro and Orval”

  1. Nice glass!

  2. Rocky Patel Maduro Toro Maduro…

    […] and citrusy.  The yeast taste was oddly reminiscent of the horrible yeasty bee […]…

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