eaglefan538 (2819) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - NOV 29, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: SEP 14, 2009 Re-rate, bottle 8846 from theisti. Wow, about another year on this thing and it was much more amazing. Lots lots of the original saison character for a bone-dry Belgian-Ale type Bret character that was excellent. Poured with a huge rocky and pillowy head, just like Orval. Yum! Thanks, Tim, this was much better that much later! Original rating: Bottle courtesy of theisti, shared by me among the best at SL. Pour was pretty standard for a saison, off-white head was large and featured lively carbonation. The aroma was sweet fruity, caramel, slightly bready malts. The flavor followed, strong sweet malt base, light spicing and peppers in the finish, only faint dry-bretty type notes under an overwhelmingly sweet and malty base. I had to yield to slob’s unhappiness w.r.t. the level of Bret (its near absence), but I got more in there than he did, even if it was underwhelming. Either way, many thanks, Tim, for this fun brew and great opportunity.
Cletus (6322) - Connecticut, USA - NOV 29, 2008
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
750ml bottle courtesy of mreusch. Pours gold with a nice white head. Smells funky and sweet/perfumy with some dry malt. Tastes of dry malt, perfumy, light tartness. Enjoyable.
Syd (920) - Waconia, Minnesota, USA - NOV 28, 2008
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
No. 01179 pours a pale yellow with a big and bright white head that leaves some lace. The aroma is spicy, yeasty, and some funk. The flavor is quite multidimensional, some funk, some hop bitter, some sweetness, some spice, and really quite special. The palate is classic and makes this one really stand out as a quencher and cleanser. Overall, this is really good.
hopscotch (8465) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - NOV 26, 2008
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: NOV 2, 2010 Bottle... Cloudy yellow ale with a small, creamy, white head that hangs on well. Perfumey, herbal, fruity nose... fuzzy fruits, lavender, chamomile, citrus fruit. Medium-bodied with a milky mouthfeel and spritzy carbonation. Lots of pale malt sweetness, warm alcohol and nice, dry, tangy funk. Sweet, herbal, warm finish. Kudos to GodOfThunder for sharing his bottle with all us kids at Redlight Redlight in Orlando!
GodOfThunder (1243) - Orlando, Florida, USA - NOV 21, 2008
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAR 5, 2009 Thanks to The Wine and Cheese Place for making this available. Great beer. Pours a cloudy bright yellow with a thin, sticky, and champagne-like head that dissolves quickly. The funk is an amazing mix of grass, citrus and floral fragrances like mother used to wear. The unmatched dryness of this makes the finish fantastic. I can’t wait to see how one tastes next year.
shanepardue (110) - Raytown, Missouri, USA - NOV 20, 2008
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle 03933 of 11950. Very sweet floral aroma and a more bitter flavor saison than the original one Boulevard released. Also a very dry ending. I like!
undsioux7 (791) - Eden Prairie, Minnesota, USA - NOV 20, 2008
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a nice yellowish golden color with a big chunky white head. Fantastic amount of lacing from the top to the bottom of the glass, fantastic looking beer. Aroma is floral, spices, brett, and citrus. Nice sweetness with a little bite at the end. Finishes quite dry.
FlacoAlto (3737) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - NOV 19, 2008
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JAN 4, 2012 Bottle No. 01148 of 11960, batch number 2008-1; Sampled November 2008
This is very well carbonated, as an exceedingly careful pour has me staring at four-fingers of foam that slowly grows to six fingers of foam and starts to pour over the sides of my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip glass. I only lose a touch of beer to the billowing, off-white / cream colored head. The beer is a clear, orange gold color that shows an almost brilliantly clear, bright, yellow-gold color when held up to the light. The aroma has an awesome grassy hop / malt note to it, ample touches of lemon zest, some tropical fruit and lychee notes, lots of cracker like grain notes and an underlying, musky Brettanomyces signature that cant quite hide despite the expressive malt and hop character. After 5 minutes or so I still have five-fingers of head on top of my beer, so I guess I’ll continue to enjoy the aroma. Other noticeable notes of tangerine, a phenolic, almost plastic like, musty, butyric acid funkiness, phenolic soaked cotton-balls as well as a wild, weed-like / grassy note that is quite nice.
Lightly sweet tasting and this has a certain fullness to the body that lets me know that the Brettanomyces has a lot of residual sugars to work with (this thing will likely go bottle bomb at some point). This is not sweet though, just not dry. What sweetness is here accentuates hop flavors of tangerine, lychee, bergamot as well as some light herbal notes and a definite floral influence. Interestingly the foam tastes heavily of a phenolic Brettanomyces character, but the Brett does not play nearly as significant a role in the flavor of the beer. The Brett does play a role here in the flavor though as it contributes a spicy, phenolic character that provides some balancing sharpness to the finish. This last, mixes with a bitterness from the hops that also sharpens the finish which provides a balance to the sweet malt and fruity hop notes found up front.
This is pretty tasty, I do wish that it finished a bit drier (especially since as this ages it will get more and more carbonated, it is already over carbonated, and could become a bottle bomb, though with a champagne bottle this is not too likely). Visually perfect for a Saison, the ample carbonation projects a magnificent head, with lots of lacing and lots of staying power. Despite being a bit thicker and a bit sweeter than I generally prefer in a Saison, both these components work quite well in this beer; the extra touch of hop character (especially the American bent) certainly helps with this. It will certainly be interesting to see how this develops as the hops fade and the Brett becomes more prominent, especially if it can keep from becoming explosive. Taken as a sum of its components (at least as far as aroma and flavor go), this beer is not nearly as good as it is in the complete whole; e.g. it is lacking in funky aromatic notes, isn’t nearly dry enough, nor is the texture perfect. On the whole though this beer just works quite well and is very enjoyable. I am glad I have a couple bottles of this to age.
heemer77 (5079) - Urbandale, Iowa, USA - NOV 17, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Hazy, light bronze body with a large slightly off white head. The aroma is a little funky with some cellar and pears. There is also a little bit of fresh ground wheat. The taste has some funky brett, more than one would suspect from the nose. There is also a little bit of pear sweetness and some black pepper spice in the finish. Nicely done and I am glad I waited a while to try it.
WeeHeavySD (3359) - San Diego (Hillcrest), Oregon, USA - NOV 17, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle @ HotD Dock Sale via DA, thanks Derek. Pours gold with a bright white head. Nose is bretty, yeasty, and light. Taste is sweet, bretty and tasty.