You may have been reading about – or better still, drinking – the latest series of limited edition, Belgian-style specialty ales from Chicago’s GOOSE ISLAND BREWING. There’s SOFIE. There’s JULIA. There’s PERE JACQUES. I can’t get any of ‘em where I live, so I had to trade for the latter, PERE JACQUES. They just sounded too good to pass up. PERE JACQUES is a thin, opaque brownish dubbel-style ale – one of my favorite kinds of beer, quite honestly. It has a very silky texture and the strong taste of maple, as in maple syrup, without being overly sweet. It’s definitely an “abbey” beer.
That said, it doesn’t hide its 8% alcohol all that well. One of my key tenents here at the HBJ is I don’t particularly want my beer to taste like a “spirit”. My favorite ales can still be busting the 10% level, as many of them do, as long as I never doubt that it’s beer that I’m enjoying. Not the case here, though PERE JACQUES does have a lot of really interesting malts that give some strong flavor. It’s OK. I shan’t be drinking it again. 6/10.