Sunday, August 28, 2011
Day 35 (8/28/2011): Wild Undressed by Picobrouwerij Alvinne (at Brasserie Beck)
So, I'll be in DC for work until Tuesday and decided to head to Brasserie Beck for dinner and a beer or two. Brasserie Beck, as the name implies, focuses on Belgian food and beers. They had a great tap list and an even better bottle menu. I was going to get the Stillwater/Mikkeler collaboration, but that had apparently recently kicked, so I grabbed a glass of what took its place, Wild Undressed, a dark sour ale from a Belgian brewery that I had never heard of before. While I was at it, I ordered the Colorado Lamb Sandwich, which is lamb, goat cheese, and roasted red peppers.
The beer was great. I was a little concerned when it came out with no head whatsoever (see above), but on closer inspection small bubbles could be seem rising from the bottom of the glass to the surface of the dark brown beer. The nose was very funky, with a strong hint of the sour to come, with a strong earthiness and a slight vinous fruit/barrel smell.
The taste is sour, but there is a balancing malt backbone which tempers it a bit. Despite that, it does have a puckering funky tart flavor which puckers your mouth a bit and makes you salivate. The malts at the back end are of the caramel/toffee type, which makes sense considering the darkness of the beer. It's not terribly complex, but it is tasty.
The mouthfeel is about medium, though the tartness of it makes it seem far thinner. The carbonation is low-moderate, again unsurprising considering the lack of head. This is a very refreshing beer, despite what you might think when it's set down on the table in front of you. Overall, quite tasty and a great choice. I'm glad I went with this instead of something else on the menu. Lord knows there was enough to choose from. I give Wild Undressed by Picobrouwerij Alvinne an A-.
The food, while decent enough, wasn't as large a hit as the beer. The frites were superb; hot and crispy, they came with a few different mayos. The curry was probably my favorite of the bunch. The sandwich was where things went wrong, though. I know lamb is a fatty meat, but I'm not sure how much more meat than fat was on the sandwich. The bread was great, as was the chewy, crusty bread, but having to pick out half of the meat in the sandwich was irritating. It certainly made the sandwich a sloppy mess.
I think the moral of the story is that next time I definitely will be getting mussels with my beer(s) when I head to Brasserie Beck. I almost did and I'm kicking myself for not doing so. Maybe I just got the bad end of a piece of meat, but I wouldn't order that sandwich again. I would, however, have no problem going back and trying something else.
Style: Sour/wild ale
Beer Advocate: A-
Bought on draft at Brasserie Beck (Washington, DC) for $14. I've never seen this before and have no idea as to its distribution.