An article by Noah Forrest
Wait, another Péché Mortel article? Yes, that’s right, two Péché articles in one week. What the hell is wrong with me.
If you missed last week’s post, five friends and I attacked 18 different versions of Dieu du Ciel’s Péché Mortel in one sitting. It was quite the ordeal. You can read it right here if you’d like.
I then decided to drink four more bottles? I clearly have problems.
Péché Day (Journée Péché) is an international event that occurs every year. On this day, beer nerds from all around the world celebrate the brilliance of this infamous coffee infused imperial stout called Péché Mortel. You can get all the details right here.
This week (as I recover from last week) I wanted to talk about the brand new Péché Pack that will be dropping on Péché Day (next Saturday, March 23rd in stores all around the province). This will be the 3rd year now that these 4-packs have been released, and each time the variants inside have been different – with the exception of Péché Bourbon, which is found in every pack.
This year we have Coconut, Moka, and Cherry. Let’s dive right in.
Péché Mortel – Coconut
The Nose on this coconut variant is pretty standard Péché all around. Not a bad thing at all, but not getting a huge blast of coconut. It maybe hits a bit in the background, alongside lots of rich coffee notes, dark chocolate, and a light fruitiness.
On the palate, it seems quite a bit drier than the standard Péché, with an agressive bitterness in the finish. I’m thinking this is the new coffee. Lots of bitter chocolate meets dark roasted espresso and hints of coconut sweetness in the finish. Definitely a more restrained sweetness against the bitter backdrop, but the body is the usual luscious but drinkable Péché standard.
There is just a kiss of coconut in the finish that lingers on the palate. I think it’s the aggressive bitterness that masks it the most. This is still delicious and interesting, but not sure I’d have picked up on the adjunct if I went in blind. I’m also assuming the coconut flavours will come through more with a few months on it.
Péché Mortel – Cherry
Here is the third different fruited variant to date. Honestly, the peach and the raspberry didn’t blow my mind, but let’s see how the cherry fares. The nose is subtle, but hits all the right notes. Lots of classic Péché chocolate notes lend complement to some fresh cherry flesh. The coffee is very present as always, lending an earthy and dark roasted layer. Brilliant aromatics on this one.
Interesting. The cherry here complements the dark chocolate malt profile extremely well. A subtle cherry presence in an imperial stout can be genius (one of my favourites being 3 minutes to midnight from Bellwoods). It creates this Black Forest cake-like thing that just works. However, as it was with the raspberry, I find the coffee bitterness ends up clashing with the fruit, creating an astringency that then leads to a cough syrup essence that I think I’m sensitive to.
That being said, this might be the most complementary fruited variant to date, and although it doesn’t work in some ways, it actually really does in others. I think many will love this. I just don’t think I’m one of them.
Péché Mortel – Moka
Péché Moka is brewed with cacao and a lighter roasted coffee to accentuate the chocolate notes. The nose carries a rich and intense coffee earthiness, with some doughy cake notes coming through as well. A light, almost smokey vibe comes from the cacao – and although subtle, it adds a nice new layer to the nose.
The lighter roasted beans add a touch of nuttiness to the flavour profile, while the cacao provides even more bitterness to the whole thing. There is certainly a mocha element happening, but everything is quite subtle and not screaming in your face.
Péché Moka is rich, velvety and chocolate forward, but this iteration of Péché comes off drier because of the lingering coffee and cacao bitterness in the finish. Tasty stuff.
Overall, as expected these variants are not only fun, but also delicious. The Coconut and the Moka are very subtle though, providing hints of the adjuncts on the nose as well as on the palate. I imagine however, that over time their presence will increase. Although I’m not huge on the cherry, I think it’s the best of the three fruited variants to date, getting me more interested in where they could go in the future.
Again, the packs go on sale this coming Saturday in stores all around the province. The Facebook event for Péché Day is right here, where you get get all the details surrounding what’s happening at the pub as well as a list of all the stores that will be carrying this year’s Péché Pack.
An article by Noah Forrest
Photography by Noah Forrest