Cave a Bieres
One of my first destinations in Paris was Brewberry, a craft beer company which had both a bottle shop and a bar right across the street from each other. How convenient! Cave a Bieres, their bottle shop, had a nice selection for an American visitor. The walls were lined with bottles, divided and organized by country of origin. Mikkeler and Toole made up a huge portion of the collection. Cantillion bottles hid on a bottom shelf. Several bottles of Westvleteren were present, as well as American beers, like Almanacs that I can't even find at home.
You are allowed to drink the bottles that you purchase at the shop, which is what I did as I waited for the Brewberry bar to open.
Tool Velvets are Blue - Saison fermented with blueberries. This poured a red, raspberry color and had a white/pinkish head, which persisted. The nose was amazing on this beer, like blueberry filling. It had a sweet candy smell that reminded me of Christmas for some reason.. A pie from my childhood, maybe? I don't know, but it was lovely. The taste was slightly tart and had some funk to it, like blueberry seeds.
Buxton/Tool Sky Mountain Sour - Berliner Weissbier. Slightly murky orange-y gold color with a white head. Aroma was sour, very lacto acidic. The taste was sour with lemon zest, white grape sweetness, and had a minerality to it. Body was on the lighter side and well carbonated.
Westvleteren Blonde - Clear dark straw/golden in color, little head. It smelled strongly like honey. The taste was a combination of that expected bready maltiness and belgian yeast, but with a bitter honey flavor that I quite enjoyed. Medium carbonation.
Before I knew it, 2 hours had passed and it was opening time for the bar. I crossed the street and entered a bright yellow room with both sitting and standing areas available. I looked up at the chalkboard and was surprised to find Hawaiin Speedway and Pizza Port Chronic on tap. I drank both, then continued on with European beer.
Crimson Bird Raspberry - The aroma was fantastic; a fresh, sour, raspberry smell. However, it was much more mild in taste. Not very raspberry in flavor, nor super funky. It wasn't bad, but the smell had built up an expectation that the taste didn't meet for me.
Crimson Bird Strawberry - An extremely underrated beer! When I went to check this in on my Untappd, I saw that it only had 3 stars. I thought this was crazy, so I went to beeradvocate and ratebeer and saw that it wasn't rated well on either of those sites either. There weren't many reviews, so I'm assuming that those who did review it were comparing it more to your typical, fruit forward saison with a hop finish, since this is categorized as a "saison/farmhouse ale." However, I think those who appreciate funk would be more likely to enjoy this. The color was a murky, pale, peachy-pink and had a thin white head. The smell was super funky in that baby diaper way. The taste was also funky, with underlying hints of moldy strawberry. This was definitely not a fruity or sweet beer, as people may have expected from the name. I had it on draft and brought 3 bottles of it home.
Tool Black Malt & Body Salts - A delicious black coffee IPA. Obviously, this poured very dark, between very dark brown and black. A tan head persisted. You could smell a strong, bitter coffee and herbal hoppy aroma from the glass. The taste masked the abv with strong chocolate and bitter coffee flavors, blending with some dark stone fruit (black cherries) undertones and ending with a somewhat citrus-esque hop taste.
Darker Side of Sour - Sour Ale. Dark brownish ruby color. Very malty aroma, but the taste was unsweet, like black currant with some light blackberry sourness. Slightly confusing, unrefined, but still pretty enjoyable.
Check back soon for my next Parisian adventure post!
Until then, hoppy drinking!
- One Hoppy Lady