Brewed by Brasserie Fantôme
Style: Saison
Soy-Erezée, Belgium
Serve in Tulip


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 603   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.44/5   EST. CALORIES: 240   ABV: 8%
A Belgian ’saison-style’ ale brewed with cocoa powder and chili pepper? Ay, Caramba! Score another first for the unpredictable brewery that was the first -- and so far the only - brewery to make ales out of dandelions and mushrooms, among other things.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
wunderbier (1434) - Tampere, FINLAND - JUL 25, 2006
75 cL bottle (2005ish), Bordeaux glass. Deep, hazy and brassy-orange body is covered by a thick and creamy off-white head. The aroma is redolent of spicy and yeasty esters common to my experience with Fantôme...dough and cilantro harmonize along with a light note of horse blanket, all carried on a crisp pils malt base. A cloud of grassy, floral hops extend over everything. And of the two special ingredients? Wonderfully integrated...a pure ’red’ chili hotness, slightly nose-tingling in its pungency accents the darkness of soft cocoa powder in a manner reminiscent of a smoky Mexican molé sauce. Forward in the flavor are sweet pils malt along with a gentle chili burn and a light acidity. Mid-palate releases a gentle funk and tame sourness, quickly displaced by the long finish in which a soft grassy bitterness defers to a drying cocoa aftertaste with a warming chili sensation. The chili and cocoa really work well together in this beer (though perhaps more cocoa, less chili would have been okay) but the front-end is really lacking. Everything interesting seems to happen mid-palate or later (especially the aftertaste). The texture is silky smooth and the next sip always seems to relieve the chili burn from the last one. Carbonation is, as expected, vigorous and the significantly chewy for a saison, though not a detriment in this case. Seriously, this would be diabolical with real, earthy Mexican dishes.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
pintocb (652) - Hoon, Georgia, USA - JUL 4, 2006
Suprising brew from an unusual company. Very light in color considering they used chocolate. Yeasty. No hint of cocoa or chili in the aroma, just malt and yeast. The finish is dry, but nice. By the end of the bottle the chili and chocolate became apparent.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
aracauna (3501) - Georgia, USA - JUL 4, 2006
This beer is much paler than I expected and the chocolate is much less of a factor in the aroma or flavor than I expected. The aroma has that funky yeast character common in most of the Fantome beers (brett perhaps given that I get a similar aroma from other brett beers). As the beer warms I start to pick up a hint of the chile used. Only later towards the end of my glass do I start to pick up the cocoa in the finish. An amazing piece of subtlety in spicing.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
lilannie (384) - Adamstown, Maryland, USA - JUL 2, 2006
Aroma: hay, grass, some chocolate, flowers, sourness, mustiness
Appearance: hazy golden color, small white head, lacing
Flavor: hay, grass, farm yard, and stale leaves
Palate: sourness, medium-bodied, stale musty aftertaste
Overall: weird

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
DragonStout (1410) - Pickerington, Ohio, USA - JUN 17, 2006
Poured a strange color.It was like a watery brown color.Hints of chocolate but the pepper was more dominant, but not overpowering.quite an interesting barrage of flavors.Has some spice and some hay to with it with a slight citrus tone.Stange stuff but decent.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Cornfield (5570) - Oak Forest, Illinois, USA - JUN 12, 2006
The idea of this ale, a Saison brewed with cocoa and chili pepper, sounds odd (but not completely unexpected from Fantome) yet comes across as an enjoyable beer. Slightly hazy amber with a short-lived head, it’s got a spicy, malty nose complemented by a light floral bouquet and the slightest hint of chocolate. The mouthfeel is light, warm, and peppery - quite literally. The flavor has a sharp malt as its base upon which is stacked tastes of dried flowers, green tea, a touch of chocolate, habanero peppers, green olives, herbs, and Eris knows what else. All superbly blended. Nice dry, bitter finish. I love this brewery. Good choice (by me) for rating #2400.

<font size=-4><a href=http://www.ratebeer.com/Places/ShowPlace.asp? Beverage Depot, Naperville, IL<font size=-1>

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Marc (486) - Yokosuka, JAPAN - JUN 8, 2006
Yeasty nose is slighly mustywith touches of malt, flowers and dust. Firm mouthfeel is slighly bitter and sweet with honey, olives, herbs, and the faintest trace of chocolate. Finishes slighly musty and heavey with malt.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
beerinmarch (2830) - Washington, USA - JUN 7, 2006
This beer was very odd in concept but really came together very nicely. Pours cloudy and muddy. The cocoa powder taste added a nice sweetness up front that was dried out further by the beer, then kicked off by a faint spiciness in the finish from the chili. The taste was a bit unusual at first, kinda reminded me of some hippie herbal store smell, but after a few sips it really grew on me and by the end of the bottle I was wishing I had another bottle.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
biggcb (464) - Harleysville, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 5, 2006
Pours a relatively cloudy brownish, amber color. Bubbly brown head. I really did not detect any chocolate in the aroma. It consisted mostly of malt and a little bit of hops. Slightly on the musty side. Kind of reminded me of a hand-pumped English ale aroma. Again, I could not really detect any of the chocolate in the taste. I did experience the chili pepper though. It hits the back of the tongue and seems to sit in the throat. Not something I really enjoyed. This would have worked for me without the chili pepper.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
marcus (9148) - Sacramento, California, USA - MAY 23, 2006
This cloudy brown ale poured with a thin off-white head. This is another strange Fantome brew. The cocoa is quite dominant and the chili pepper leaves a slight bite on the tongue. It seems to be heavily hopped and the hop bitterness is noticeable over the cocoa flavor. Not the best Fantome ale I have tasted, but one of the more interesting ones.

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