OlivierMTL (711) - Quebec, CANADA - SEP 19, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Couleur jaune pâle parsemé d’une belle mousse blanche. Arômes de houblons frais, camomille, herbes, lime et citron sont au repos à la ferme. En bouche, gains, foin et herbes, beaucoup de coriandre. Finale sèche et citronnée. Carbonatation active et bien dosée aux fines bulles pétillantes. En fût ZBF, voyage Europe 2005
Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 14, 2005
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Slightly hazy, golden yellow body with an enormous, fluffy, rocky alabastor head. Mild, slight sweet, slightly spicy aroma. Hay, earthy hops (Saaz? Hallertau? I need to get some help on this hop identification thing...), orange zest, coriander, lemongrass, biscuits and a touch of honey sweetness. The body is light, but with a soft, smooth carbonation. The flavor is good, starting with some fruity sweetness and mild spiciness, followed by some flavorful, bitter, earthy hop character. The finish is mostly dry with no hint of alcoholic warmth. Not as phenomenal as the Saison Dupont I drank last night, but still tasty.
chriso (7475) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - SEP 8, 2005
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle at GBBF, August 2005. Very odd. A saison that thinks its a hefeweizen? Cloudy straw colour. Estery aroma with lots of banana and sweet fruit. Distinctly wheaty. Much more like a saison on the palate, although the wheaty feel persists. Smells like its going to be quite sweet, but turns out to be reasonably dry and citric, with some yeasty, earthy character and plenty of hop presence. Unusual, but it worked.
willblake (2654) - Bel Air, Maryland, USA - SEP 7, 2005
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
09.07.05 750ml bottle. Hazed yellow gold with crystal clear highlights around the edges. Tall white head fades to a quarter inch of dense, firm, lasting foam. Aroma reeks of herb garden, rotten lemons, parsley, and nice mild perfumes that emerge with temp, also a bit of alcohol. Body is soft and full with a cascade of fine effervescence at first but waning to a thinner and mostly flat body as it approaches room temp. Flavor is citrusy and herbal with lots of fresh flavors; pizza dough. Super hoppy stuff with plenty of lingering bitterness after a long finish. Seems to be missing the funk, but it proves that a saison doesn’t have to be stinky to be good.
TheBeerGod (5411) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - SEP 7, 2005
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle - 750mL. Hazed gold with a tall white head. Nose is very fruity and herbal. Lots of candy notes, spice and Belgian yeast as well. Almost a hint of coconut and mango with light candied orange. Taste is hoppy and slightly bitter but very fruity and yeasty. Lots of grass, flowery hops, spices, light earthiness, unripened fruits and light candy sugar. Body is dry and light with big carbonation. Finishes with some grass, bitter hops, flowers, fruit, and candied notes. The bitterness seems to win out, for the most part, over the underlying sweetness. Very good either way, though.
tiggmtl (4548) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - SEP 6, 2005
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Grassy, hay-like hops, with tropical fruit esters in the nose. Cloudy yellow tan with low white head that lasts nicely. Citrus, grassy, hay-like flavour with fair bitterness that lasts on the tongue and battles with the sweetness. Medium-light, dry body with strong carbonation. Sampled at GBBF 2005.
aobecksy (700) - Middle of no where, Ohio, USA - SEP 5, 2005
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Smelled and tasted like a Heff, cirtus banana peppery note and tongue, bitter finish.
Pailhead (5278) - Brownstown, Michigan, USA - SEP 5, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle: Aroma is yeasty with some apricot and light spice. Pours a hazy dull yellowish-orange with a very nice white head with very good retention. Excellent lacing. Orange and yeast flavors up fornt. Finishes with lots of orange peel, spice, and a rather strong bitterness.
BBB63 (6308) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - SEP 5, 2005
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle provided by Pailhead for the Labor Day gathering:
Hazy golden hue with a long lasting frothy head and very good lacing. The arom has notes of tangerine, grapefruit, wild flowers and heather, with some funky and sweaty yeast esters. The taste is yeasty and cheesy up front with lemongrass and vegetable notes. Twangy finish with minor bitterness. The mouth feel is aggressive and carbonated heavy with a dry aftertaste. I would try this again, a good beer.
ClarkVV (3902) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - SEP 2, 2005
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottled on 4/30/2005, consumed on 9/1/2005. First sniff: Fantome saison clone, but not nearly as funky, no real dusty bacteria or limey bite to it. Very wheaty, with lots of lemon sponge cake. Some lovely spicy hops. The more it breathes, the more clean it gets. Light perfuminess from the hops. Notes of an abbey trippel without the intense yeast or sugariness/alcohol. . . . So actually not really anything like an abbey trippel. Very generic smelling, in a good way, meaning at least it has all the base characteristics I would look for in a real Belgian saison.
Quite light in color. A cloudy, hay-yellow, dulled with an almost greenish tint. Slight copper hues on the edges. Huge, pillowy, intense head is pure white. Very well retained. Tiny bubbles rise. So far so good!
First sip has sugary cotton candy and peaches, transitioning in to a light tangerine/nectarine flavor, lightly bitter and finally ending on the bitter hops note AND a high amount of acidity (high relative to style). With more sips, the sugary pils malt, quite thick and blanketing gives way (or actually, the palate just becomes acclimated) and the hops really come forth. Very hoppy, with light honey behind it. Then a clean yeast finalé. I like the hops but I can’t help wondering if this was hopped at this high a level from pressure by the distributor to appease the American market. Anyways, where is the funky character?? Maybe it will develop in time? Seems way too clean though. But on the other hand. It’s very well-made and flavorful. Great mouthfeel (though you kind of come to expect that as given from a high-quality Belgian ale). It has moments where I catch a glimpse of greatness. Fantome Saison, Vervifontaine Blonde. . .glimpses. Fresh hops and light vanilla on the end, some lingering acidity. Will it stand the test of time? That’s the question.