Monday, March 31, 2008


They sent me to Atlanta again last week. Last time I went to Atlanta for work, I did a mad scramble to figure out where I was going to drink a beer, and ended up at the Suicide Girls’ favorite sports bar, THE VORTEX. You can read about that here. This time it was a no-brainer: The Vortex again (hey, it was near my hotel). I was in the mood for UNIBROUE beers, to be honest, and was hoping they had a few. UNIBROUE is becoming something of an obsession for me – this Quebec-based brewer makes some of the most amazing Belgian-style ales in the world, and I love that I can buy them even at the corner liquor store – they’re (almost) everywhere! My favorites right now are LA FIN DU MONDE and MAUDITE, but I still haven’t worked my way through the lineup yet, so we’ll see. That’s what this visit to The Vortex was designed to do – see if other Unibroues could reach that hallowed standard (and to relax and work off my dinner with a couple o' beers).

I decided to go with Unibroue’s DON DE DIEU to get things started. This is a “triple wheat” beer, like a real souped-up Belgianized hefeweizen, and to be frank, I wasn’t that into it. Funky and tart, there was a lot of lingering bitterness on the tongue, like a lemon/honey syrup of sorts. This is a big one, too – 9% ABV, so you need to have your big boy clothes on to enjoy it. It wasn’t a bad beer, just not my thing I guess, or at least not up to this brewer’s standards. 6/10. Thankfully I pulled the trigger on their EPHEMERE next. I’d resisted this one for a while, given that it’s their “apple beer”. Well damn me and hang me, this one’s great! Light-bodied, hazy golden color, and very crisp. Tastes of, you know – APPLES. Good ones. Not a cloying taste by any means, and it does not dominate the flavor of this beer, which will now go into my Unibroue rotation. Excellent stuff. 8/10. I then headed into tornado-struck downtown Atlanta and the sanctity of my hotel, thankful that modern distribution can bring these Francophone beers to the land of Sherman, Jefferson Davis and Molly Hatchet.


Bryan said...

Jay, next time you're in Atlanta, do yourself a favor and get out! Well, I do like the Vortex, but take the East/West train line approx. 20 minutes east to Decatur and go to one of the country's best beer bars, Brick Store Pub. I would've never believed it either 'til I stepped foot in there...over, and over, and over again. No, this isn't a paid advert ;-) It really is that good

Anonymous said...

I'd also suggest the Sweetwater 420. A solid pale ale.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, look at Brick Store Pub's website ( and see what all they offer. It's fantastic!