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Beer Pick: Urthel Saisonniere

Urthel Saisonniere

Urthel Brewery, Ruiselede, Belgium

$3.69/11.2 ounce bottle (4-packs and draft coming later)

urthel-saisonniere.jpgProfile: With Hop-it, Urthel brewer Hildegard van Ostaden practically invented Belgian-style IPA. Now van Ostaden has created another tasty hybrid called Saisonniere. Urthel calls it a blond special ale. But as the name suggests, Saisonniere has many qualities in common with Belgian-style farmhouse ale.

Brewed with 20 percent wheat and bottle-conditioned, it’s effervescent, brisk and refreshing, with a tart touch of lemon and an elegant bitter edge. Urthel recommends pouring two-thirds into a glass, then rolling the bottle and pouring the final third, as you would a German or Belgian wheat beer.

Pair with: Saisonniere would be great with salads, goat cheese and seafood of all kinds, from fish and chips to lobster, clams, calamari or mussels. Or try it with bright Thai or Vietnamese dishes.

Bob Townsend is editor of Southern Brew News, a bimonthly beer publication distributed throughout the Southeast: brewingnews.com/southernbrew. Write him at btowns@bellsouth.net

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