BREWVIEW ON UNIBROUE’S ÉPHÉMÈRE FRAMBOISE

Unibroue’s Éphémère Framboise was one of the ales that I never had the pleasure of enjoying before. I wrote to master brewer Jerry Vietz in the Summer of 2018, requesting samples from the brewery for the purpose of writing BrewViews on the ones sent. “I will look in the archives to see what I can find for you” was his reply.

Since the website states “NO LONGER BREWED”, I was truly hoping I could taste this elusive brew. After a short while, I received an email with great word: “Good news Gordon, I have found samples of ALL the ales you have requested, and will be sent your way!”

And what I received was indeed a treasure! This was one of the Éphémères that I save for the right time. The bottle date was February 8, 2016, so it was nearly 3 years old at the time of tasting! I love rare moments like this…


BEER STYLE AND COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION

Style category: White Ale brewed with fruit

Brewed since 2005
Origin: Chambly, Quebec

Seasonal beer offered for a limited time only. Its blast of raspberry flavor is supported by crisp acidity and a dry finish which quickly appealed to many Canadians.

As its name suggests, Éphémère is an ephemeral ale that comes and goes with the seasons. It was developed as a series to feature a seasonal fruit in a refreshing, lightly spiced white ale. The label depicts a fairy, an ephemeral spirit associated with fruits picked at the peak of ripeness during each harvest season. She first appeared in the spring of 2000 and has since been celebrated on a variety of seasonal fruit ales such as apple (brewed all year long), cranberry, blackcurrant, peach, raspberry and blueberry.


FACT SHEET

ABV
5.5%
Fermentation
TOP
Color
COPPER PINK
SRM
5.5
Clarity
SLIGHTLY CLOUDY
Head
PINKISH BEIGE
Meniscus
QUICK
Bubbles
MEDIUM
Effervescence
MEDIUM AND SUSTAINED
IBU
7
Body
THIN
Aftertaste
DRY

 


OUR BREWVIEW ON UNIBROUE’S ÉPHÉMÈRE FRAMBOISE

APPEARANCE / THE POUR:
We served it at 40° F in the signature Unibroue Éphémère drinking glass. The pour gave an easy 2-finger height head which was  creamy and dense. We did ensure the glass was “beer clean”. The Brussels lacework the head left behind once it collapsed- was thick and patchy on the sides of the glass. The rim color variation is a light golden color. During consumption, (as with previous Unibroue BrewViews) the head held an 1/8″ height until the bottom of the glass. This is consistent of the Unibroue products. As you can see in the photo, there was a lot of yeast from the bottle that made its way into the glass. By now, you know that Unibroue advocates in its pouring ritual to introduce the yeast into the glass. And man, did I get a lot in mine… and you all know how I enjoy the yeast in my beer!AROMA / BOUQUET:
HUGE notes of Raspberry (of course), some faint woody notes, bready yeast, spices, some very light funk. As the beer warms, the Raspberry aromas develop pleasant “jammy” notes and faint herbs.

TASTE:
The huge flavors of Raspberries are remarkable. At nearly 3 years old, there was a bit of funky tartness, with the faint woody notes coming through as well.

MOUTHFEEL / PALATE:
The effervescence level even after 3 years still held at a medium level. The immediate sips hit the tip of the tongue and the sides of the mouth. Nice tart, dry finish that is refreshing, and easy on the palate.


FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTIONS

CHEESES:
Triple cream brie, (Raspberry Brie bites), Raspberry BellaVitano, Goat cheese, Manchego, Port Salut, washed rind cheeses.

APPETIZERS:
Raspberry Chicken salad with spinach, Nicoise salad, Raspberry Crostini, Endives with rich Cream cheese and raspberry slices. Baked brie with Honeyed Raspberries and Pistachios.

ENTRÉES:
Sweet and Spicy Chicken with Raspberry Balsamic glaze, grilled Tuna, Pork Loin of Fillet, Duck Breast, Mixed berry stuffed Portobellos.

DESSERTS:
There are so many to choose from, but I’ll list a short handful: Cheesecakes with Raspberries and Chocolate, Tarts, Raspberry Custard Brulee, Dark Chocolate Raspberry cupcakes, Raspberry pie (of course). Or why not find the freshest Raspberries that you can, and enjoy them as they are, no frills.


OVERALL IMPRESSION

It would have been interesting to have tried a fresh bottle of Éphémère Framboise. But since this was my first time trying it, I have nothing else to base or compare this BrewView to.

That being said, what a absolute privilege and pleasure to be able to enjoy this rarity! I hope Jerry decides to brew it again someday.

The even better news is, I was sent not one, but two bottles to enjoy! The next one will opened on my wife’s birthday. She’s a fan of Framboise, and I know she’ll enjoy it as much as I did the first one. Any bottles you find now are super rare, since it’s been quite a while from the last time it was brewed.

MY THANKS GO OUT TO:
Andrew Murphy of Unibroue in Portland, Oregon, Al Spina, and Jerry Vietz and his generosity! This was a treat, indeed!


LA BRASSERIE UNIBROUE
80 Des Carrières Street

Chambly (Québec)
J3L 2H6 Canada

Tel. : 450 658-7658
Fax : 450 658-9195
Web: http://Unibroue.com
Email : Info@Unibroue.com


BrewView author GORDON A. PONCE is the main driving force behind Belgian Beer Journal.com. Since 1983, Gordon recognized that beers from Belgium were special, set apart from the typical craft beer.

He views beers from Belgium (plus Belgian-style and Belgian Inspired beers from other countries) great examples of the brewer’s art. Gordon and his wife live in beautiful Northern California- a great place to enjoy beer!     Ecclesiastes 8:15