As summer finally landed in Brighton I cycled south for the final part of my Tour de France. First up, we joined up with the race before it crossed the border to Switzerland and circled around the epic Lake Annecy. By far and away the most picturesque part of#TheFrenchExchange, with a bit of local beer to boot. A few hours on the road landed us at a beach near Montpellier (the first I’ve seen since leaving no. 7 East Street) and it is home to La Brasserie des Garrigues. The Artisan outfit brew under the same basic principals as us – natural, unpasteurised and vegan friendly so I gave them a can of our recent collaboration at Arundel and asked for their ‘strongest’ competition. La Frappadingue is an imperial IPA, notching 7.5% ABV and just about classed as a DIPA. Our first attempt at Dirty Rascal aimed to enter the trend but it’s got a long way to go before we can class it as the kind of Bison Beer we strive to achieve. For starters, and not because of my (still) pathetic French, they couldn’t understand why we chose to strip the gluten, and some of the fruits from the Citrus Centre in Sussex were lost in the madness. That being said, the punchy brew packed way too many punches for the French outfit and turned out to be in a different league. La Frappadingue certainly looks the part and drinks super malty but there’s no bitterness to the finish and I probably wouldn’t have finished the bottle had it not been for work purposes. Dirty Rascal will improve and serves as an example to the collaborative approach we have in this industry – stay tuned for news on our next collusion with Good Chemistry in Bristol. That’s all from France, I’ll be back next week to sit on the stones of Brighton beach and celebrate Nick’s 37th Birthday. It has been an awesome adventure, but the frogs are much better with wine. See you by the seaside!