TheRealMGD (551) - Lakewood, Washington, USA - DEC 29, 2012
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle from Bottleworks. Dark black pour with a short beige head leaving retreating lace. Nose is roasty and lightly smoky. Medium-light body with moderate carbonation. Dark roast malt, coffee, black pepper, hickory smoke, light barnyard funk. Finish is more of the same with some woody umami and lemon creeping in. Quite dry and charcoal aftertaste. Black saisons are a tough style. I can’t say I’ve been enamored of any I’ve tried.
Nephilium (1345) - Ohio, USA - DEC 29, 2012
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Roasted aroma with a hint of anise. Pours an opaque black with a huge light tan head. This is a strange beer, there’s the crispness and funk of a saison, with a touch of smoke and roasted notes. Very light on the palate, with lots of carbonation. It’s a good solid beer, but I think I’ll stick with the traditional saisons.
ADesenberg (581) - Ohio, USA - DEC 29, 2012
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle: pours dark black with a small tan head. Aroma of yeasty fruits, smoke. It’s got a lot if deep complexities in the flavor, the smoke balances it all out very well. Good stuff.
monk191 (874) - California, USA - DEC 29, 2012
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
A very good beer. Pours a thick black with a bubbly brown head. Smells of cherries, nuts and green apples. Taste is very complex, smoked and fruity, more cherries. Interesting ending, a little hoppy, but not overpowering. Overall, great. Had in the bottle. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
andyhwcinc (1433) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 29, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Purchased at Binny’s in Chicago, IL; enjoyed at home on a lazy Saturday afternoon while doing some errands. Appearance is a moderate, pitch black with a thin white head that laces to the glass. Aroma of smoke, chocolate, light yeast, also a touch of roasted malt. Taste is pretty good, definite smoke presence with a light yeast flavor, also a very light touch of fruit and hops. I don’t know how to classify this one, doesn’t really taste like a saison to me. Still pretty good.
BlackEyePA (573) - USA - DEC 29, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
Really nice collabo. Aroma is toffee, toasted grains. Taste is hint of coffee, caramel, and grain. Its clean bland and straightforward but nice. Its kind of a doesnt do anything well but really is good in all categories.
GT2 (8354) - San Diego County, California, USA - DEC 28, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tap at The Salted Pig. Poured a deep near black with medium coffee foam. Good lacing. Nose is sage, black pepper, herbal, mild smoke. Taste is dusty, dry, herbal, toasty, black peppercorn. Lemon tea finish. Interesting black saison. Muted to almost no smoke character makes it past the herbal onslaught.
rangerred (916) - Johnson City, Tennessee, USA - DEC 28, 2012
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
12oz bottle into a pint glas
Pours pitch black with a one finger tan head. Really good rocky head retention and awesome lacing on the sides of the glass.
Aroma has the trademark Belgian yeastyness that I expect from a Saison but also a nice curveball of roasted malt with a hint of smoke. The roast and smoke are subtle but enough is there to let you know that this is not your average Saison.
This uniqueness carries over into the flavor where once again, there is a little something extra happening. Belgian yeast up front with the typical fruity flavors common in this style but there are subtle hints of caramel and burnt toast. I also pick up coffee and dark chocolate along with very faint smoke. Quite nice but then comes the mouthfeel. The mouthfeel is is full and slick with a sticky finish. Now I wonder if this is really a Saison. Where is the light crisp mouthfeel and bone dry finish? This really ruins the whole experience.
Overall, a great idea but it just doesn’t work. I wonder if all the specialty malts made bone dry attenuation simply impossible? I think this might be the case but if so, then why even attempt a "smoked saison"? Nonetheless an interesting take on a classic style and worth picking up if you come across it.
Ontbeertaster (2323) - Ontario, CANADA - DEC 26, 2012
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle, very nice aroma, it very spicey, the pour is black and a bit see through, the flavour is spicey and a very light smoke, overall, this one is very flavourful and nice.
Slipstream (2004) - USA - DEC 26, 2012
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
On tap at Capone’s terrific (and crowded) day after Thanksgiving event. Who decided that day has to be called Black Friday? I’m not calling it that. Anyway, this was a really interesting brew! It is a little confusing because there is a brewery called Perfect Crime, but they apparently were not involved in committing this particular legal violation. But there is no infringement here concerning the statutes of good taste! This perfect crime was amazingly well-balanced, yet it seems like a blend. Smoky, sweet, a touch sour, seems like it could have a little peat in it too. It is not like anything else I can think of. Is it an old ale? A new ale? RB calls it a saison - whatever, I call it excellent.