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And the Valley Drinks: Bayou Teche Cocodrie

Weather’s warming up, so time to start lightening up the beer a little.

Billy Gomila

With the season turning, time to start working some lighter beers into this list, at least in terms of color.

In this case, that's about all that's light. Bayou Teche's Cocodrie, a Belgian Tripel-style IPA:

Cocodrie is Cajun French for alligator, and this Belgian style ale is stuffed with enough hops to stand up to a sauce-piquant prepared with one. We recklessly crammed IPA-worthy additions of hops (six separate hop additions, plus dry hopping) into an elegant and tastefully brewed Tripel - the spice and fruit flavors from the yeasts mix with the sumptuous hop flavors to create a rich, yet dangerously drinkable IPA.

Our interpretation of the celebrated Tripel IPA style of beer is crafted with a generous amount of Pilsner malt which insures this ale clocks in at just over 8 percent ABV. Our brewmaster, Gar Hatcher selected strains of French and Belgian yeasts for their complementary fruit and spice flavors which meld with the multiple additions of elegant European hops. Cocodrie is then dry-hopped with French and Styrian hops which provides this beer its fruity, citrus, herbal and spicy hop aroma.  Available July to December.

My issues with Bayou Teche have been discussed before, but I have to say, this is another one of their specialties that kind of hit the spot. Belgian Tripels are a style I find myself enjoying, and the extra hops kind of make it a little refreshing.


From the jump, the Belgian style really shines through on this one with a very rich, malty bouquet that has just a light floral note on the backside to hint at the malts you're looking for out of an IPA. It almost starts kind of like a pilsner, but then rolls through that thick, malty and vaguely sweet texture you expect out of a tripel. Through the middle and the finish it kind of rolls lightly over the hops, almost like syrup, just enough to give it some contrast.  A good comparison would be something of a hoppier Andygator. Definitely worth trying, and I could really see this paring well with some grilled seafood. A little heavy for session, but not too much, and 8 percent alcohol by volume. Solid 3.5 out of five stars.