Review: Avant Garde Artisans Brasseurs & Matera Brasseurs Tonneliers Bricolage Sour

Merci Shawn et Renaud over at Avant Garde Artisans Brasseurs for sending me a massive amount of beer to take home while I was in Montreal! Most of them I already drank but I saved this one just for a review. Sure, this one doesn't even have a label on it because I got it right before they were about to put the label on it.. so in reality.. it could be any beer for all as I know?! Well, in reality the beer is a collaboration with Matera Brasseurs Tonneliers, a brewery that takes pride in barrel aged beers. The beer they came up with was Bricolage, a Wild American Sour Ale.. something that I know that Shawn and Renaud are passionate and amazing at.

Since I don't have the label of the beer to get any reference from the beer, from what I can gather from the interwebs, the beer is apparently a collab of an Amber ale aged in Chardonnay barrels with a Belgian Pale Ale aged in a Riesling foudre.

Appearance: Pours a rich amber reddish brown with a bit of a honey hue to it. The head is a light to moderate off-white yellowish in appearance, it gradually diminishes, leaving behind a light amount of foam on top as the beer is slowly savoured.

Aroma: This beer is incredibly cerealy up front first and foremost - it has a hefty breakfast cereal vibe to it, lots of wheat, possibly barley, malt and a bit of a sweetness to it as well. I was surprised the cereal aroma would be the first thing I would get out of a Sour. The beer is definitely quite sour once you get past the cereal notes, it has a bit of a lemon tartness to it, a hint of various tart fruits in the back, a light floral presence, and a mild oakiness at the end. Fairly light so far yet decent amount of sour presence to it.

Taste: The sourness is quite strong in the tasting profile compared to in the aroma. The breakfast cereal vibe still shows up here.. it reminds me of Cheerios/Alphabits cereal if I had to state which cereals. The beer is still somehow face puckering sour with a good deal of lemon and a bit of Chardonnay, there's a bit of sour fruits in the back again but I can't really pick up what I'm getting here. The beer ends off with a mild woody oakiness at the very end.

Overall Thoughts: Surprisingly cereal-forward if you didn't get that already but I'm liking it a lot, the cereals come up and then wham! You get hit in the face with the beer's sourness. This is definitely a slow sip-worthy beer rather than something you could drink quickly. A great and interesting collab by Avant Garde & Matera!

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