MaltOMeal (1092) - Land of Sugar, Texas, USA - JUL 21, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: NOV 26, 2009 bottle shared at july BA tasting. Pours a cloudy, pale yellow with a white head. Nose is of citrus, funk, floral and perfume. Taste is same as nose. Mouthfeel is dry. Decent saison.
imadeadguy (378) - back in NJ!, New Jersey, USA - JUL 20, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sample thanks to corby. Pour is lighter golden with a fluffy white head. Aromas of citrus, dry brett funk, and some yeast. Flavor is very drinkable and smooth. Dry finish and some nice fruit also. Nice brew overall.
kitschy (326) - Nebraska, USA - JUL 19, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tasted at 2008 Sunfest. Very clear, clean light golden color with a bit of white head. nose: lemon peel. A multi-textured beer. Delicious flavors include citrus and grassy hops.
DaSilky1 (2606) - San Diego, California, USA - JUL 19, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAY 20, 2010 Original Rating (well, apparently not, but...) 7/19/2009: Shit, I just lost my rating. Here’s a condensed version. Thanks dr. Bill. Pours hazed yellow, big lacey white head. Nose ball. Flavors mirror nose, dry, somewhat bretty, more tennisball. Good,refreshing stuff (3.9)
re-rate Bottle, sampled 5/20/2010...bottle from Sir Kevin Scott, the Frenchman: I think this has at least a good 6+ months on it, at least. Pours yellowish with too large of a head...must pour carefully! Nose is hay-like, spicy, with a spike of brett weaving throughout the olfactory sense waves...and yes, Todd, very good on the "Tennis Ball" characteristic...Flavors are clean, hay, straw, grass, a little spicy but fortunately not in a nasty banana-esque belgian-yeast kind of way. and YES! Todd...Tennis balls, it tastes a bit like huffing on a freshly opened can of tennis balls. BALLS! Gotta bump it a point...it was a very satisfying beer.
Allstar (33) - , Virginia, USA - JUL 19, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle #09752 of 11950 shared by Immy at Immy’s Backyard Throwdown. Pours a light yellow. First taste had a light fruit, slight bitter but smooth overall impression. It was one that I would have again.
Drake (9999) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - JUL 18, 2009
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle #09752 of 11950 shared by Immy at Immy’s Backyard Throwdown. Pours a hazy lemon yellow color with a medium head. Good head retention and lacing. Aroma is fresh lemons with slight bretty notes. Taste is light mildly funky brett with caramel, citrus and pineapple. Light on the palate. Medium bodied. Absolutely sublime.
TAR (2518) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - JUL 14, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: FEB 3, 2012 2009 edition – Batch 1: Speckled bronzed-yellow. Clingy, mountainous cap of white foam condenses into a meringue consistency. Divine nose of minerals, cotton, Band-Aid, tangerine, pineapple sherbet, lemon zest, and a refined medley of peppery, floral, herbal hops. Fluffy pillow of froth caresses the palate. Initially brisk with a gritty Brett-induced mineralic clinch swirled with a raspy mouthful of grassy hops and a fervid phenolic snap reminiscent of white and black pepper. Artfully refined notes of Band-Aid and floral hops boast their softness as they temper the spiciness while cushioning the firm body. Splash of ripe citric acid follows to bolster the remarkably full center which remains full and creamy despite the bracing dryness. Vividly defined crackery Pils malt gradually takes foothold as it generates ample sharpness as well as a teasing piecrust toastiness. Though the hop bitterness is chalky and borderline astringent, it drips with succulent citrus flavors (tangerine, mandarin orange, grapefruit pith) and delicate floral tones. Fusion of peach and dried pineapple contribute more subtle sweetness and juiciness. Yeast displays a puttylike quality as well as a candied pistachio sweetness. Finishes explosively Bretty and phenolic with a tongue-numbing assualt of mineralic phenols and cottony harshness. Belches beautifully as elegant citrus and floral flavors abound with each burp. Springier Band-Aid accompanies background notes of pineapple sherbet, lemon zest, and grass. Pretty magical stuff, though I slightly prefer the keg-conditioned versions sampled over the years. I’d like to see them either tone down and/or refine the unruly/chalky/aspirinlike hop bitterness (Amarillo?!), or ditch the Amarillo altogether and replace it with a softer and more delicate varietal (Hallertauer or Stryian Goldings?). This is a beer worthy of hours of attention as you contemplate the awe-inspiring marvels of yeast and masterful brewing.
Well, the initial batches were once great, but the hops have apparently been ramped up to excessive levels, ultimately rendering this chalky and aspirinlike. While the brett character is delightfully pungent and horsey, I now find it somewhat one-dimensional as it no longer possesses that lovely tropical-fruit softness of the initial batches. Where their now-retired flagship Saison was a mastery of finesse and finespun delicacy, this is the antithesis. I just wish both could coexist, for those who want an authentic saison. Still, a pretty good beer.
kosko20 (350) - Hopewell Junction, New York, USA - JUL 11, 2009
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Batch 2008-1, bottle #806 of 11950 into a Boulevard Smokestack series glass. Pours a gorgeous light orange gold with a enormously thick white head that leaves a thick lacing. Aroma is nice of brett, fruits (mostly apples and apricots), some lemon and various spices. Flavor is sweet on the heavy side. Mouthfeel is ok, slightly creamy but also high in carbonation and they are fighting it out. Semi dry finish. Overall, a little disappointed. After waiting for 9 months for this to age, it doesn’t deliver on the quality I hoped.
Skyview (5283) - Papoose Jct, Minnesota, USA - JUL 10, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Sampled from 750 ml bottle (00902/11950) and shared by moelikebeer. Pours a semi-hazy golden straw colored brew with a decent sized white fizzy head that slowly dissipates to a thin film top. Aroma of golden grain malt with some wheat character, sour fruits, a hint of lemon, coriander and a touch of clove. Taste is medium bodied, some carbonation with flavors of barnyard funk, some golden grain malt with some dry wheat, lemon zest and a touch of coriander. Finish is semi-dry with a sour fruit and yeast aftertaste that slowly disappears.
FlyingTaco (112) - Massachusetts, USA - JUL 9, 2009
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Batch 2008-1, bottle 8677 of 11,950, into an Ommegang chalice. Enjoyed this one on 1/27/2009.
Pours a pretty-much perfect meringue/bubble bath 2-finger head. It’s bright white and tops a slightly cloudy lemon-pineapple body. Staying power is huge. Lacing is good. Carbonation is moderate in strength and speed.
Wonderful slightly soapy spice. A little mild clove, a bit of coriander and very mild citrus zest. Not picking up Brett in the nose a whole lot but this is very even-keeled and plentiful.
A little warmth is needed for the Brett to emerge as a mild yet solid backbone to excellent Saison yeast electricity, subtle spice of ginger and austere lemon citrus. Orange zest is on deep background. This is extremely well-constructed.
The clean yet bright spicy feel is what makes the Saison style so interesting overall. This is a little tightness with mild sweetness and huge yeast electricity. Hops are really quiet - a little pine but very mild considering this one has been dry-hopped. Still, they contribute in body to the clean dryness of the offering. A bit of bone-dry oakiness emerges with warmth. Brett is slow to develop, but it’s definitely there.
One of the better new-world Saisons I’ve encountered. A bit of everything...the floral and piney hops (subtle, but they’re there...especially with warmth) mesh with the dry oak to leave a lasting impression. Savor this one - surprisingly it doesn’t drink entirely quickly. Still, it’s awesome.