BBB63 (5406) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - JAN 7, 2006
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
750ml bottle and served in my Duval snifter at near room temp:
A beautiful golden body topped by a nice white frothy head and produced very good lacing. Grassy hops are the main character on the nose with elements of pear and earthy yeast esters along with light pepper and grains of paradise. The taste is quite herbal and grassy with the hop nature more up front in this brew than many other Fantôme products. Still it is quite easy to drink with a support act of mild musty yeast and malt undertones. It finished off with very light touch of spice and fruit like acidity. There are brief brushes of alcohol throughout the tasting but it is more of an accent than a centerpiece. The feel is lively and crisp upfront, chalky and dry upon the finish. Different from most of Dany offerings but not the bitter beer I expected and that my friends is a good thing. I like it!
Schroppfy (2350) - Łódż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - DEC 29, 2005
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
A stunningly simple bitter saison, the grassiness of the hop (styrians as in Orval?) is the only star and it is perfect. Some herbality, but a huge grassy character, with slight butter notes. Would pair this with an aged goat cheese like Armentizia. Wow. Great beer.
Murphy (1759) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - DEC 20, 2005
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pours with a creamy white head atop a golden, slightly hazy body. Light floral aroma, yeast and cream in there as well. Hints of spice. Taste is light sweetness with caramel, toffee malt flavors. Bananna citrus evident, floral notes as well. Lots of bitter, musky hops in the finish. Nice soft mouthfeel. Solid stuff.
Cornfield (5276) - Oak Forest, Illinois, USA - DEC 20, 2005
3.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Tame for a Fantôme, but quite enjoyable nonetheless. Hazy amber in color with a HUGE creamy & chunky head, it has a tart, yeasty aroma, well seasoned and well hopped (floral, herbal & grassy). It’s quite soft and creamy in the mouth. Having a citric tang to it, it’s got pale malt, peppers, a light hop bitterness, and keeps the sturdy ABV well hidden. The finish is both tart and bitter. Very nice.
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jrt (62) - USA - DEC 19, 2005
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: AUG 15, 2007 This beer pours a hazy dark lemon color with a dense frothy head.
More hop/grass sour tang than other
Fantomes, but very tasty nonetheless.
Taste became more well rounded after warming up and the mouthfeel was excellent. A unique Saison.
FlacoAlto (3450) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 17, 2005
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a hazy copper color that is topped by a frothy, almost three finger thick, pale tan head. The aroma is sharp and herbal with a bit of grassiness thrown into the mix as well; it is purely driven by hop aromatics. Though as I get used to the aromas a bit of soft fruitiness starts to pick through; notes of green apple and a hint of pear.
The taste is lightly sweet up front, but quickly takes on a sharp hop bite that leads to an herbal, astringent bitterness in the finish. There is some definite yeast driven flavors as well, including a light, mouth drying almost cotton ball-like, funkiness. There is a definite fruitiness here that the hops are trying to drown out, but can’t quite do: I get notes of tart apples, pears and perhaps a hint of sour plums. Seems that Dany did not make this quite hoppy enough, I still get plenty of Saison like characteristics, though it is certainly is hop dominated. There are quite a bit of earthy spiciness here with notes of black pepper, a hint of allspice, perhaps even a hint of nutmeg.
The interesting thing about this beer is that this was supposed to be an unbalanced hop attack of a beer, yet it is instead quite a bit more balanced than perhaps many American hoppy beers. The upfront, characteristic, Fantôme fruitiness, and that touch of earthy spiciness really balances the hop character, especially as the beer warms up a bit. A spectactular failure, indeed!
Dorwart (2266) - Robbinsville, New Jersey, USA - DEC 15, 2005
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Thin soapy looky head. Reduces quickly to a splash of suds. Dry and fruity aroma with a bunch of spices. Bunch of hops in the also of the floral variety. Color is a murky rusty brown. Dry, dusty, earthy flavor with more hops and spices. Dry with a feint hint of sournes. Dry and a little bitterness in the finish. Some grapefruit floating around in there somewhere. Decent stuff but does not do very much for me.
CaptainCougar (7093) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - DEC 10, 2005
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle shared by StewardofGondor, thanks Joel! Clear dark bronze pour has a dense, frothy well-lacing white head. Very nice, complex, dry earthy and hoppy aroma has a sweet Belgian malty presence and some enticing peppery spice. Starts with a dry, earthy, yet lightly sweet, grassy hoppy flavor and finishes full and dry with some yeasty complexity. Another great beer from Fantome.
bb (5888) - Alamo, California, USA - DEC 8, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Rich amber beer with a huge light beige head. Earthy, spicey, citrus aroma. Hop flavor mixed with a musty/earthy yeastiness of a saison. Some citrus bitterness that mellows out the more you drink. Finishes dry. Interesting. Very much an IPA/sasison mix.
rauchbier (3394) - Isle Of Beer, Lincolnshire, ENGLAND - DEC 7, 2005
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle, ZBF 2005.Hazy gold, thin white head and moderate condition. Sweet and spicy in the nose with a slight fruitiness, herbs, some phenols and a touch of wild yeast. More sweetness in the mouth with caramel maltiness becoming more noticable along with some fruitiness and a vague sensation of wildness, though not as spicy and herbal as the nose suggested. Gentle yeasty bitterness in the finish and a lingering nutty note at the end.