By Kevin Burns, Beer Columnist
As the craft beer world grows, brewers are becoming more and more creative with their brews. One of the recent trends is the use of wine ingredients into beer such as grapes or champagne yeast, or the aging of beer in wine barrels.
Le Bleu was brewed with New York State blueberries and Brettanomyces, The beer is a blend of barrels filled in 2007, 2008 and 2009. It's finished in the bottle with Champagne yeast. The beer is named after Ithaca Beer Company employee Bret LeBleu and is an extremely limited production.
Le Bleu poured a rose color with a two fingered width, white bubbly head. The aroma is dominated by yeast.
The mouthfeel is Champagne-like and the body is tart with ripe fruit. The blueberries start to show through towards the back end and lead to a tart finish.
Overall, this is a nice sour ale. The carbonation is high on this one, and the ABV is fairly low. The bottle advised the beer to be served cold, but I found the flavors became more pronounced as the beer warmed. If you can find this beer it is worth the buy.
This beer is a fantastic substitute for champagne (its does have the yeast) and would be a great starter for your meal. I am thinking either a pear salad with romaine hearts and blue cheese or a fruit and cheese plate if you must pair this with food but I would prefer it by itself to truly sip and savor.
Producer: Ithaca Beer Company
Price: $12.00 (25.4 oz. Bottle)
Rating: (3.5 out of 5 | Very good-to-Delicious)