Last week I talked about Benelux Brasserie and few of their hoppy beers. Benelux is slowly becoming my go to brewery for Hoppy IPAs from Quebec, but there is a more deeper, darker and more complex side to this wonderful Montreal brewery. Few beers see bottling through out the year showcasing some of Beneluxs more delicate abilities.
The few that have seen the bottle include some wild/sour ales, incredible brown ales and some sours. Below I talk about some of their beers more on the dark side, which I found spectacular! One to my surprise was especially mind blowing. Neither of these are bottled and are available only at the brewery on draft. Certain beers are available for growler fills as well, a new addition to Benelux as of recently.
Benelux Le Beat
Black IPA || ABV: 6.2% || IBU: –
The aroma has a very mellow kick but boasting with mild notes of hops and mild notes of coffee. To taste it has an amazing coffee kick. The hops and the coffee notes along with minor roasted malts blend together to create a wonderful black IPA. Some black IPAs tend to lean towards more of a light body and watery side, while others tend to focus more on the roasty malts and some tend to be very bold on the bitterness. For example Great Lakes Apocalypse Later is more roasty, Hill Farmstead Society & Solitude #2 is more bitter and Dunhams Black IPA is more on the light body, watery hop side.
Benelux Le Beat has found its way somewhere in between all of the classifications. Light body, roasty notes, with some minor hop notes and not too bitter creating a great clean finish and a great light mouthfeel. It’s a very good middle ground between hoppy, roasty and bitter.
Benelux La Marginale
Dry Stout || ABV: 5% || IBU: –
I often get in the mood to have a nice bodied, creamy, coffee and roasty stout. So I decided to try Marginale from Benelux and to my surprise it turned out to be one of my new favorites! La Marginale is a dry stout aged on oak and bretts. I am no fan of bretts when it dominates the beer, but I am a huge fan of oak and the musky flavour that over takes your palate on the finish. The aroma on this beer has a very strong oak, cinnamon and a bit of a spicy undertone. The taste has a huge oak kick mixed with some great roasty malts. This is a beer that really utilizes bretts well, the bretts are added for a very subtle addition to the taste rather than an all encompassing overpowering shadow. There is no bitterness detectable, and its low ABV ensures an easy and clean drink ability, I could knock back few of these in one sitting that’s for sure.
The ingenuity of brewers in regards to blending certain substances together and having an eye for understanding which ingredients will go well with which particular style is the true nature of a successful and knowledgeable brewer. And with this beer, I am confident to say that the head brewer for Benelux is a true testament of fantastic brewers here in Montreal! Benelux is great at tackling any style of beer thrown its way and it does a pretty fine job with a diverse selection. And the staff is always very friendly, respectful and easy to communicate with! Always a bonus to be able to go to a brewery and connect with the people around you including the serves and bartenders.
Words + Photography by HopCitizen