FreshHawk (596) - Iowa City, Iowa, USA - JUN 12, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
A - Dark garnet chestnut color with an average sized, foamy, sticky off-white/toasted marshmallow color head. Decent retention with a nice layer of sticky lace.
S - A lot of dark fruit, especially a plum, fig, and other vinous, jamy fruits. Also plenty of spice with cinnamon, nutmeg, and some clove and pepper. A bit of a sweet bready aroma as well. Somewhat Christmasy with a spiced sweet bread aroma, but it isn’t overly Christmasy.
T - Similar to the nose with plenty of dark fruit and it is pretty plumy and slightly vinous. Good amount of spice with cinnamon and nutmeg being the strongest with some clove, pepper, and anise as well. Fair amount of Christmas flavors, especially the spices. Some sweet, dark bready malt base. In the background there is some more traditional Saison/Fantome spice and yeast.
M - Medium body with medium to high carbonation. A bit of a zesty feel, but a touch of smoothness as well.
D - Pretty drinkable beer with the ABV very well hidden. Spice and dark fruit combine well with the typical Fantome/saison flavors. Doesn’t overpower the palate.
Notes: Tasty offering from a great brewery, although this is not my favorite of their beers. Fairly Christmas like in the spices and dark fruit, but it didn’t necessarily strike me as a Christmas beer. All together this was an interesting offering from a good brewery, but I probably wouldn’t get it again, but it is worth a try.
minch25 (577) - Medford, Massachusetts, USA - MAR 16, 2008
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours chestnut brown, thick loudly crackling tan head. Very weighty alcoholic brew. Flavor of tart cherries, strawberry jam, bitter "cherry pits". Thick yeasty "sawdust" texture. Certainly interesting, even though it’s not really my favorite kind of beer.
mdi (573) - Nebraska, USA - DEC 25, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
75cl bottle at least one year old. Big pop from cork. Muddy, earth colored beer rushes into the glass with a big beige head. Sporatic lacing. Earthy, peppery malt, chocolate and brown sugar. Nice body. SPicy bitter finish. This brings to mind fall weather w/ a roaring fire outside. Earthy, somewhat smokey, some warming alcohol, pepper. So far, my favorite "christmas" beer this year...but this transcends that lable. A joy.
TheEnemy (562) - Chicago, USA - JAN 22, 2006
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a hazy dark reddish brown with a a great big fluffy white head that refuses to make any hint of a departure until rinsed out of the bottom of the glass. The room fills with musty, earthy, spicy slightly acetic aroma once the bottle is opened. Flavor is earthy, nutty-yeasty, hop-spicy, peppery, light to moderate hop bitterness, hint of sour grass, and a dash of licorice. Hard to find a more complex flavor profile than this, especially one that comes together so well. Big thick palate. What a wonderful winter treat.
raindog (560) - Evansville, Indiana, USA - MAY 13, 2003
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Muky brown beer,and a creamy,tan,head. Aromas of sweet/fruity malt, winter spices,and a little toasted malt.Pretty thick mouthfeel not as fizzy as expected.Decent sweet/fruity malt flavors,little spice.Finish is bitter,sweet and yeasty.Seems to be a unattractive medicinal flavor throughout that detracts from flavor.
Brodie (540) - Blowing Rock, North Carolina, USA - JAN 9, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Complex aroma - caramel, toffee, plum, pepper, honey. Flavor is malty, with all the elements of the aroma. Even balance, medium bodied. Very good.
VitaminR (540) - Colorado, USA - JAN 28, 2009
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Marachino cherries and spice. Reddish brown, small soapy head, solid lacing. Bitter orange and sweet syrup, cinnamon tartness, like a distant cousin of Campari. Big carbonation, full body, slow but solid burning finish. Might be a little hot, but a very interestingly fruity and spicy beer, unique.
LyndaNova (532) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - DEC 30, 2006
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Cold 25.4 oz corked bottle: Pours a hazy reddish brown amber with off-white bubbles around the edges of the glass. Aroma is of rich malts, alcohol, light fruits, caramel and spice. Taste is of rich malts, cinnamon, light sour notes and apricots. Watery texture, mildly carbonated and smooth. Ending is malty with notes of grassy hops and light fruit.
Floback (530) - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - MAY 24, 2007
4.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: OCT 10, 2007 750 ml bottle. Knightly Spirits aims to please. Pours a ruby-tinged black and tight webs of tan lace. Tireless and always skunky with a touch of chalk and hay on the nose. Crisp with spicey-yet-subtle notes of Dewar’s scotch and granny smith apples. Head is a huge, tinted brown and the nose is caramel and malt. Perfectly sour with yeast. One of my all-time favorite beers due to its complexity, smoothness, and intrigue.
crzybob77 (530) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - MAR 25, 2006
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Definitly a darn good beer. I have always liked saisons. Herbal yeasty aroma. For 10%, this is insanely balanced. If you told me this is 7%, i would likely believe you.