cbkschubert (2900) - BFE, Arizona, USA - JAN 3, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
750 ml bottle from Plaza Liquor - Pours a hazy amber color with a two finger thick off white head. Nice lacing. Aroma is full of various spices and esters, yeast, and light malt hidden in there. Flavor is sweet malt, esters, and spice. Mouthfeel is soft, but finishes a tad thin. Medium body. A good beer.
Bigsilky (327) - Charleston, USA - JAN 3, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
The bottle claims that this breed is Blonde in origin. This could be true if one were only to judge it by its bark. This wonderful beer pours a deep, hazy, amber excitedly releasing pent-up CO2 to bolster the tight foam cap. Aromas of earthy herbs and cracked pepper spice intertwine around a nice juicy malt that never becomes cloying. The irony of the name suggests a white dog with black spots, or is it a black dog with white spots??? Whatever it is, this Blonde is certainly more intellectual than most, beers that is. While this beer doesn’t demand food, you would scarcely do better with a plate of interesting cheeses.
egajdzis (5116) - Spring Mount, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 28, 2007
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Poured a hazy amber color with a large, off white head that left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of vanila, coriander, brett, citrus fruits, toffee, and leather. Taste of honey, green apple, nuts, some wood, cardboard, ginger, citrus fruits, and a light tartness in the, finish. Prickly carbonation, full mouthfeel.
FlacoAlto (3676) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 26, 2007
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Served at about 58°F, the beer is a slow gusher that I was able to get into my glass before I lost any beer. The head, despite a very careful pour, slowly rises to five-finger in height and is a tan color with specs of dark yeast / particulates on it. The beer is quite clear, at least the liquid portions of it, which shows a pale reddish color when held up to the light, but there is also a ton of chunks floating around in the brew. This has quite a spicy nose to it and this mixes in well with interesting malt notes. Aromatic notes of clove, corn tortillas, spicy ginger, crushed caramel malts, oregano, a touch of sage, black pepper, some cardamom, milkweed, and a green vegetal note towards the end as well as some warming alcohol aromatics. Malt aromatics of soda crackers, fruity caramel notes and grassy grain are all noticeable. There is also a fair amount of fruit aromatics noticeable; I get notes of pears, apples, figs and some berry notes. As usual with a Fantôme brew, this has a very complex, layered aroma to it.
The carbonation has died down quite a bit and the beer now has a creamy texture to it that goes along with a fruit laden sweetness. Fruit notes of ripe plums, star fruit (that is at times striking), brandy soaked raisins and apple butter are all quite noticeable. The up front fruit notes are offset somewhat (but never really suppressed) by a spicy middle and finish that brings to mind flavors of white pepper, cloves, . Herbal notes of milkweed, perhaps a touch of green grass and a touch of sharp basil also add some sharpness and balance to the brew as does some sharp higher alcohol notes.
Towards the end of my first glass a sip gets a little chunky, but does not seem to effect the flavor all that much. The second pour is a bit more yeasty, both with a murky appearance and a yeast-like flavor to it. A touch more bready, but also a touch more herbal / vegetal in the finish, but on the other hand it has softened overall.
Another fantastic creation by Brasserie Fantôme. The texture of this brew is quite exquisite, despite being on the heavy side for a Saison and the distinct green, weed-like herbal note in the finish provides a nice balancing note to the heft and fruit sweetness. If this one starts to go sour it could reach phenomenal heights; even still, this is another home run, a fantastic creation, one which I will most definitely have to age a few of. One thing that does leave me wanting; what is the story behind this brew? I would really like to know why / what / how this brew came into being.
Purchased: <a href=http://www.ratebeer.com/Places/ShowPlace.asp? Liquors, Tucson, AZ
NicerInPerson (337) - North of Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - DEC 22, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
The aroma was fruity with a nice peppery spice presence and a moderate level of caramel. The aroma was floral and fruity and exhibited some very nice complexity of malt characteristics. The hops were lightly citrusy and spicy while also bringing out a nice earthy nature. The beer poured into the glass hazy amber with a very short lived white head which couldn’t do much to lace the glass. The flavor was darn nice with an excellent malt character and a fruity presence which had some tropical fruits and also citrus to boot. Orange was present, but muted and not in the forefront. The flavor started with a candy sweetness which was kept in check by a decent level of bittering which came with some spicy hop and yeast presence. Pepper was most notable, but perhaps a bit of star anise came along for the ride. The finish was dry with lasting light pepper into the aftertaste. The body was medium, or just above, with a moderate level of carbonation and just the beginning of a creaminess on the palate. Alcohol was really only a factor in the warming that came post consumption. This one is listed as a Belgian Blonde Ale on the label and that is a pretty accurate statement. A darn nice beer, one that certainly is a departure from the standard Fantome fare. Seems more like something one would expect from DeProef. 750 ml bottle, capped.
NYMojoMan (12) - Arden, North Carolina, USA - DEC 19, 2007
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
A – Poured a 45°F 750 ml bottle from 2005 into a Rodenbach Grand Cru Tulip Glass. It has a Murky Amber colored body. A thick fluffy soapy off-white to tan head (duvel almost) made up of varying sized bubbles which lingered. Nice lacing and legs are there.
S – I get soap right off the bat. I had yet to read the contention of blonde ale and thought I was smelling a westie blonde. Trappist Esthers, spicy hops (goldings & saaz), and banana bread lead me to expect a trappist ale mixed with some farmhouse characteristics. Oh boy, I can’t wait but Danny Prignon never disappoints.
T – Man this is nice. Slightly acidic spicy banana breadfolds into a Belgian trappist style ale. Clove and Pepper with some Styrian Golding and Saaz hop character fold into this really balanced creation of Danny Prignon.
M - Medium bodied with some Acidic carbonation. Highly carbonated. Alcohol is smooth and hides well at an 8%er.
D – Danny Prignon might be crazy, but another brew from him moving in the direction of the abbay beers to show me that his artistic genius isn’t limited to Farmhouse Ales. With each sip of this beer more, I’ve recalled the Westvletern Blond. MMMMMMMMMM. Great Hop and Malty balance.
swoopjones (4890) - Buffalo, New York, USA - DEC 17, 2007
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
750ml @ Coles Christmas Tasting 2007. Funky, belgian yeasty aroma. Bandaids some sourness. Some ripe fruit sweetness. Medium to high carbonation. active bubbles. Decent
NoiZe (2324) - Amersfoort, NETHERLANDS - MAR 4, 2006
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
6th Dutch Ratebeer Gathering. Lactic aroma and taste. Hints of apple too. Smells indeed like a milkshake. Sweet and a bit bitter palate. Strange brew.
skortila (4176) - Baarn, NETHERLANDS - MAR 1, 2006
2.5 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
6th Dutch Ratebeer Gathering. Aroma is citric and lactic. Bit like a milkshake. Cloudy, almost opaque, orange coloured with no head. Taste is bitter (hops), bit sour with vanilla sweetness. Citric and lactic. Medium body. Again an ultra-weird fantome brew. The ghost is definately drunk. :)
caesar (4505) - Bunnik/Utrecht, NETHERLANDS - FEB 27, 2006
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
6th DRG. Cloudy orange color. Aroma of vanilla pudding, sweet, weird. I like vanilla pudding, but the taste is a bit lactic/citric. Initial taste is good, but it becomes a bit unbalanced.