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RATINGS: 890   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.7   EST. CALORIES: 201   ABV: 6.7%
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This Farmhouse Ale traces its roots to the small rustic breweries of Southern Belgium. The word Saison comes to us from the French language and it means Season. Lightly spiced with Organic Ginger, Orange Peels, Black Pepper and Grains of Paradise, this brew promises to quench your thirst on the hottest Southern California days or wherever your travels may take you. Available in 750 ml bottles and on draft at select inspired locations.

Editor's note. This is a new incarnation of SPF 45, previously brewed at Pizza Port Solana Beach

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
ClarkVV (3892) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 18, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 16, 2007 2006 bottle (we finally got PP in MA!) consumed on 10/27/06
Big, rocky, beige-butter-colored head slowly recedes to a manageable level, never falling below cover but only leaving scant lacing on the glass in clumps. The body is a warm-toned peachy-gold with some stronger copper-auburn tints. Medium-high clarity, leaving the yeast behind (bottle conditioned, of course).
Sweet buttercream biscuits topped with honey are cut by ginger and dry, spicy pepper. Some streaks of hay and light herbs (mostly dry; oregano, dill, etc) run through quickly, but it centers back on the malt/spice contrast. Some light vanilla and honey-almond notes emerge as well, still battling the spice. Light citrus zest, green raisins (reminding me a lot of what raison díetre used to smell like) and just a pinch of the pineapple notes I associate with SPF 45. It all comes together somewhat heavy (relative to the style) on the nose, though the spice dosent seem as prominent as in SPF 45. But the slack left by the spice is picked up by the malt. Some clean baked hay, light breadiness and gentle pils malt softness do peek through on the finish, giving a lighter, more airy note, but I still think itís going to be too sweet in flavor for me.
And sweet it most certainly is. Granted, as FlacoAlto mentions, the spicing does help keep the malt in check somewhat, but to me, spicing shouldnt be used to balance malt. Itís like using one heavy flavor to balance another; you get balance, but itís still comes off as heavy and certainly not bright or crisp. Hops are unremarkable, just some light herbs and hay as seen in the nose. Plump, juicy green raisins and other fruits, as well as light pineapple supplement the sweet, honey-caramel malts and ginger and pepper go to work attempting to dry it out. Too sweet for my tastes, but then, so is SPF 45. If you like spiced saisons, this is certainly a well-done one, though I still think the FG could be taken down even lower. But Iím sure itís intended to be a more hearty/robust beer. No alcohol noted, no flaws. Engaging carbonation is mostly tight. Should be a very good one for the cellar and I will certainly revisit.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
SDbruboy (1864) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 14, 2006
750 ml bottle, from BevMo LaJolla. Pours a hazy apricot color with a huge, fluffy and long-lasting white head that leaves long stringy lace. Wonderfully yeasty and spicy, fruity with orange notes, sweet hawaiian bread, cardamom and faint anise. Again in the flavor the breadiness stands out, fruty and spicy as well with white pepper, floral and herbal hops, and an pleasant astringent finish. A medium body, creamy carbonation round out this tastey saison!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
grant (842) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - DEC 13, 2006
Deep golden color. Dense, clinging head. Orangey, spicy, lightl bretty aroma. Initial sweet flavor infused with pumpkin pie spice followed by more citrus (lemon) and massive, yet fitting, bitterness on the finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
BŁckDich (5464) - McCall, Idaho, USA - DEC 12, 2006
Bottle: Light hazy blonde, nice head and lacing. Nose of citrusy grass and sweet musky pale malts. Clean zesty flavor, nice pinecone and lime flavor. Ends balanced, high abv and lots of tart citrusy notes.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
DYCSoccer17 (3351) - Woodland, California, USA - DEC 7, 2006
750 mL bottle purchased at Ledgerís Liquors in Berkeley, CA. Spicy, banana, estery nose. Light dry hoppiness present in the nose. Quite aromatic and pleasant. Moderately hazy golden honey colored body with a fluffy off-yellowish head and very persistent lacing. Light, sweet, rather citrus lemony flavors to start. Becomes more grassy with a great deal of carbonation present in the middle. Floral, perfumey flavors in the late middle. Finishes dry, light spiced and herbal hops. A light milky flavoring late. This is very good and very drinkable. Great saison.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Odeed (1787) - Bakersfield, California, USA - DEC 6, 2006
(bottle shared with irishboy)murky yellow with a thick white head.aroma is a blend of dusty hay,belgian candy,fruits,and caramel malts.flavor mixes up the aroma with a dry,sour finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
OhioDad (2493) - Hilliard, Ohio, USA - DEC 5, 2006
750 ml bottle corked and caged and received in a trade from zug4abby! - Thanks Abby! - Pours cloudy amber with a nice creamy offwhite head. Nice bready yeast aroma with some orange and light spice. Flavor is yeasty as well with nice crisp grains there as well. Definitely some orange and spice as well. I think it is corriander.. More spice and citrus at the finish. Palate is crisp and pretty clean.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
turbo (1271) - Arizona, USA - DEC 5, 2006
Poured a murky orange with a thick foamy head. Aroma is big yeast, citrus and spice. Flavor matches the aroma with a lightly spiced tangy finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Bockyhorsey (2610) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - DEC 5, 2006
750 ml Bottle. Aroma had a strong yeasty bread odor. Hazy yellow body with white head that stayed with beer till finish. Got a yeasty grain zesty flavor along with good amount of bitterness. Left a yeast soapy aftertaste on palate.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
IrishBoy (3872) - Bakersfield, California, USA - DEC 4, 2006
Bottle; Nose is yeasty barnyard with a little spice and citrus; Hazy dark urine colored witha small, glass-lacing white head; flavor is spicy with light sourness and a faint caramel malt.

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