As The Beer Professor, I get asked all types of questions about beer but the one I get the most is, “Is there a beer you don’t like?” Yes, I’ve had beers that I’m not a fan of, but I realize it’s probably not the beer itself–more likely it’s me. Try as I might, I typically don’t care for Belgian style beers. But, this week’s brew goes against the grain of my palate as it’s one of the few Belgians I enjoy. This weekend Goose Island’s Matilda is What’s on Tap.
Since 1995, Goose Island has been one of (if not the) the premier breweries in Chicago. Their Bourbon County Stout is still phenomenal and their consistent year-round and seasonal offerings were always met with high praise. In 2011, Goose Island made headlines when Anheuser-Busch bought a majority share. Though the sale opened a much bigger market and allowed for more production, the idea they might have sold out to AB didn’t leave a good taste in the craft beer community’s collective mouth. Despite AB’s ownership, Goose Island continues to produce and Matilda might be their finest product!
Almost a cross of wine and beer, Matilda is full of sweet fruit notes. On each sip I get a hint of apple, and maybe pear, combined with a sugary-sweetness that makes each swig very enjoyable. Because I typically do not favor Belgian style ales, what I love most about Matilda is its lack of wheat finish. The 7% ABV is very well hidden, be sure to pace yourself though, Matilda goes down very smooth.
I am enjoying several glasses of Matilda with grilled scallops and steamed oysters; a refined brew calls for a refined meal!
Pro tip: dry out the scallops before grilling this will prevent them from becoming “rubbery” and chewy. Here’s to the weekend and a great brew!
Style: Belgian Style Pale Ale
Alcohol by Volume (ABV): 7.0%
Color: Golden Yellowish Orange
Hops: Super Styrian, Styrian Golding, Saaz
Malts: 2-Row, Caramel, Candy Sugar