Tonight’s Tasting — Chimay Ale Premier and Hoyo de Monterrey Churchill

For tonight’s tasting on the Lido Deck, I selected a Chimay Ale Premier and a Hoyo de Monterrey Churchill.

If you have never had a Chimay Ale, allow me to introduce you.  You, Chimay; Chimay, you.  These distinctive ales come in 750ml corked bottles, with a wire wrap holding the cork in place.  (They are also available in smaller standard bottles, but what fun is that?)  The beer is fermented in the bottle, and is unpasturized and unfiltered.  If you believe the label (and I have no reason not to in this case), the beer uses only natural ingredients and is certified to have been brewed in a trappist monastery, with the proceeds going to charitable works.  You’re not just drinking, you’re giving to charity!  A single bottle will cost as much as a six pack of another beer, but with no hype you’ll understand why when you take your first taste.

Pouring into a chilled glass yielded a nice, creamy beige-colored head.  The beer is dark, caramel brown, and is slightly cloudy due to the lack of filtering.  It has a pleasant, yeasty nose from the bottle fermentation, along with malt, nut and citrus scents.  The big flavor is nicely complex, with a dried apricot and malt taste. Even at 7% APV, the mouthfeel is perfection.  This Chimay is on the heavy side, so you probably won’t be drinking several in an evening, but it is a nice follow up to a meal.  A truly great beer.  The angels didn’t sing, but they were humming.

My local Albertson’s Supermarket doesn’t have the greatest beer selection, but it does have a large walk-in cooler.  I like going into the cold to pick out my beers; makes it more of an experience, like walking into a humidor to browse through the cigars.  I found this Chimay for $7.49. Bev Mo sells them for $10.

Now to the Hoyo de Monterrey Churchill.  Hoyo De Monterrey Churchill cigars have a hearty flavor that comes from a blend of aged long-fillers from Honduras, Nicaragua, and the DR.  These very affordable medium-to-full-bodied cigars are rapped in oily, natural, Connecticut Broadleaf wrappers.  The cigar burned evenly and produced flavorful smoke.  This is not a complex cigar, but it was a very pleasant smoke that nicely complemented the heaviness of the Chimay Red.

Chimay Ale Premier – 8.8
Hoyo de Monterrey Churchill – 7.9

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