In 2006, the U.S. Congress created American Craft Beer Week with the passage of House Resolution 753. To commemorate American Craft Beer Week, TwoPints and I are reaching into the cellar and opening up a good bottle of beer every day. To document the consumption of seven of my best bottles the seven bottles I have convinced myself I should open, we are also reaching back to one of our old beer journal techniques. We call it "He Said, She Said." In the journal, we'd each jot down our thoughts on the beverage at hand on adjacent pages... usually without the elitist terms like opalescent, rosewater, or lacing.

Enjoy, and Happy American Craft Beer Week!

Day 1
May 11, 2009
Allagash Grand Cru
Batch #20 (Winter '08-'09 release)

Website/Bottle Information:
Allagash Grand Cru is our winter seasonal. We brew this special, deep-golden colored beer each year in limited quantities. It has a full, yet refined malty palate and a gentle fruit and spice aroma, which will continue to mature and evolve over time when the beer is cellared. Enjoy Allagash Grand Cru by itself next to a warm fire, or as an accompaniment to pate, sausage, or a hearty lamb dish. Allagash Grand Cru is the perfect compliment to the cooler seasons!

Available in: 12 oz and 750 ml bottles, 5.17 and 15.5 gal kegs
ABV: 7.2%
Original Gravity: 1067
Recommended Cellaring Temp: 55°F
Recommended Serving Temp: 45 - 60°F

Suggested Food Pairings: Pair with full flavored, spicy entrées such as lobster or shrimp diavolo. Also excellent with curried dishes. For dessert pair with bread pudding, Indian pudding, carrot or spice cake.

He Said:
Aw man. I love this beer. Even before I became a true beer snob, Allagash Grand Cru was one of my favorite 750mL bottles. It turns out, Grand Cru isn't exactly a beer style, but in the U. S. it is usually used to describe a Belgian-style beer, usually brewed with spices. Allagash's version is a near perfect blend of spicy and malty. The smell... it's kind of a spicy, alcoholly heaven. This is pretty heavily carbonated and tastes great both cold and as it warms. As for Allagash's claim that it's a winter beer... I think the medium alcohol level (eeh, 7-ish), lively carbonation, and balanced flavors make it a pretty good warm weather beer. Take that!

She Said:
Allagash Grand Cru, to me, is not a beer you would pick up on a hot summer day. Because of the spiciness, I'm reminded of winter time beers. This makes perfect sense, as I'm told that is how they market it (He Said: you'll find a snow flake right there on the label). I love the bubbles bouncing around with every sip. Not my favorite type of Belgian but great tasting none-the-less. Every beer drinker has their "it" flavor, Allagash Grand Cru just misses the mark for me. The beer is just a little to heavy and serious for my taste. No way would I push it away if offered to me, but not my "go to" beer of choice. It's good, try it!

  1. J.R. Ewing May 15, 2009 at 8:19 PM  

    0.75L Bottles kick a$$. Good review!