Based in the south-west French city of Angouleme, La Débauche Brewery has been updating the age-old concept of French style and elegance since they began in 2013. Keen on experimentation across all fronts, their beers push artistic boundaries and take the term ‘craft’ to the next level.
TEXT: KATE HARVEY | PHOTOS: BRASSERIE LA DÉBAUCHE
Starting out as amateur brewers, founders Eglantine Clément and Aurélien Camandone turned a personal passion into a professional brewery in just four and a half years. “We put everything into this project, and rapidly grew in such a short space of time. Now we’re brewing 14,000 litres of beer a week, and exporting our products across 25 countries,” Clément recounts.
“We try to use as many local ingredients as possible; our honey and hazelnuts are all grown in France, for example. Our grain comes from Belgium, and our inspiration from all over the world,” she says. Despite maintaining a ‘French gourmet’ philosophy when it comes to brewing, their imagination knows no bounds.
“Besides our core range, which includes an IPA, Porter, American Pale Ale and Imperial Stout, we have created some fantastic brews with ingredients such as marshmallow and salt. We discovered a beer in the US that’s made with peanuts, so we’re currently experimenting with that, too,” reveals Clément.
With more beer drinkers turning away from traditional choices and opting for more interesting flavours, La Débauche continues to please a modern crowd with their left-field selection. Clément: “In parts of Europe, for example, we hear our raspberry Imperial Stout Amorena is considered by many to be the best of its kind.”
Combining high-art with excellent craft beer, La Débauche has become particularly famous for its unique labels: “We decided that Angouleme was a great base because, after all, this region is famous for its wine, Pineau and Cognac. However, we recruit tattoo artists and comic book illustrators from all over France and even abroad to design our labels.” Clément explains.
Today, visitors can visit the taproom to enjoy a pint, and learn more about the production process. “We recently moved into a space that spans 1,500 square metres, and our taproom is one of our most exciting developments,” says Clément. Upon first impression, this impressive space is nothing short of an incredible artistic project: the exterior walls are adorned in vivid graffiti, and their bar an ideal spot for tasting.
The La Débauche team invites you to visit their taproom to try one of their rare small-batch beers, or find out more about their passion for recipes that are out of this world.