I have an article in the current (August/September) issue of Mid Atlantic Brewing News on the tasting I did with Jocelyn Cambier recently. The published version of the article was edited for word count and a whole section on Le Trou Du Diable was struck from the print edition. For completeness I though I would add that missing bit here.
"Outside of my tasting with Jocelyn I’ve had several beers from another of his producers, Le Trou Du Diable on tap: La Grivoise is a prickly, dry Belgian style pale ale with spicy notes of ginger, clove, and a hoppy finish, La Chose is a hybrid wee heavy/IPA with a grapey malt body and aggressive citrus hops, Weizgripp is a doppelweizenbock that has a light brettanomyces influence and is reminiscent of Aventinus with loads of banana, spice and roast, and L’Imperatice, a Russian Imperial Stout with a round body, mellow chocolate and coffee flavors. Brewer Andre Trudel is also responsible for the current holy grail of Quebecois beer, La Buteuse Brassin Special, an elusive Triple Amber Abbey ale aged in apple brandy barrels that I have not yet had the opportunity to try."
In the intervening time between submitting the article and this post I actually spent some time with the brewer Andre Trudel and one of his partners in the cooperative Isaac Tremblay, at the Vermont Brewers festival in Burlington, where I also got to try their La Buteuse, sprite, honeyed and eminently drinkable at 10%abv, La Saison du Tracteur, a really elegant, spicy and dry interpretation and La Penurie, a hopped up sessionable pale ale loaded with Nelson Sauvin hops from New Zealand. They were even gracious enough to send me a bottle of Buteuse Brassin Special (currently on the reserve lists at Church Key and Brasserie Beck in DC) and a couple of glasses by post...and what an accomplished beer it is, orchestrated layers of brett, wood, fruit and spice-charmingly rustic, world class and a benchmark of the Quebecois scene. Andre, it's time for a barrel room my friend.
Like many great brewers Trudel is an obsessive who admitted to me that his mind is always racing with ideas and anxieties about his beer, and that sometimes he doesn't sleep at night "Because of the beer". Trudel definitely feels the seduction of wild fermentations and has been experimenting with Brettanomyces, a devilish twinkle lights in his eyes when he speaks on the subject.