Pere Jacques Belgian Style Ale — Goose Island — 8%

I first became acquainted with Chicago’s Goose Island brewery through their superlative Bourbon County Stout. Given the complexity and down right deliciousness of that offering, I was expecting good things at the dubbel end of the spectrum. I was not disappointed.

This chestnut-brown Pere Jacques pours with minimal head and some residual lacing. There’s a nice mix of toffee and brandy notes with that wonderful Belgian bread/basement foundation that the style calls for.

Even though this ale is a healthy eight percent alcohol, I was surprised at the heat following its smooth mouthfeel. I also found the Pere Jacques to be lightly carbonated for this style as I was expecting more of a Champagne feel, but neither of these factors adversely impacted this very enjoyable brew. By this time, I should have known to expect the unexpected from Goose Island; they haven’t yet let me down.

Grade: B+

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