Cirrhosis (1283) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - JUN 16, 2010
3.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Light honey brown body with slight haze. WOW!!! WTF!!! What is this wacked out aroma?!?!?!? So many different things going on here. Sage I think I notice most and thyme is a close second and I swear I’m hitting lemon and ginger type aromas to. I can’t stop smelling this it so odd, I can smell this all night long and not get sick of it. There are so many different flavors going on in here, so many strong herbs it like liquid stove top stuffing but there is also a big hop presence that helps balance it out. Taste comes across fairly sweet and has a bitter lemon hop finish. The bitter linger on the palate for a very long thyme……..get it thyme……as in the spice…..because I really mean time……..they sound close to the same. Where I thought the aroma was yummy and unique even though the flavor is very similar it doesn’t have the same effect on me, I really don’t think I could ever drink more than one of these in a month and I’m glad I split this one. Interesting brew I’m glad I had a chance to try it.
Elwood (3336) - Leesburg, Virginia, USA - JUN 16, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Serving: 12 oz. bottle from Fireworks.
It pours a light yellow gold color with a nice, foamy white head. Decent head retention. The nose is very herbal. No, not with hops, with actual herbs. Lots of rosemary and sage with the thyme and parsley in the back. Light notes of hay and yeast too, abet subdued compared to most saisons. The flavor is a great mix of what I would consider a strong saison and a judicious use of herbs. The flavor is more in your face than a typical saison, but not overwhelming. The sage really comes through and the parsley adds a nice "green" touch. All of those herbal flavors play well with the hay and yeast notes in the saison. Interesting that they chose to filter this one. I would have guessed that leaving the yeast would have added yet another layer of complexity. Still, they have certainly done right with this brew. Light to medium in body with soft carbonation leading to a short, herbal finish. Definitely different for a saison, but well worth seeking out.
trevor211 (1584) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 15, 2010
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
This is one crazy brew. If the handwritten note from Sam Calagione silkscreened on the back wasn’t enough, an ale brewed with all four of the Scarborough Fair herbs was bound to pique interest. And pique it did. Pours a light, transparent honey amber with a pillowy head. Those herbs are right up front on the nose, adding a kick to an already hoppy saison. There’s a lot of sweetness in the flavor that wasn’t apparent in the aroma - a mild honey/caramel note under the pungent herbs. Really intriguing, and very well executed (no surprise, given the three collaborators). Not something I’d seek out often, but I’m certainly glad I tried it.
craftycarl21 (2338) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 15, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a slightly hazy golden pour with a decent sized white head. Aroma holds great citrus hop, herbal notes including heavy thyme and rosemary, and that awesome spicy yeast characteristic of a good saison. Flavor is very heavy on the herb, particularly rosemary, along with citrus and more yeast. Great palate, tasty but drinkable. Awesome brew.
notalush (5669) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUN 14, 2010
2.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 9/20
I was hoping that, since Victory had a hand in making this beer, that there would at least be a little respect for the style here - and even if it didn’t turn out to be "traditional," I was hoping I would like it none-the-less, considering the fact that I live a lot of saisons that diverge drastically from the style, such as NG Saison, and anything Fantome makes (as long as there was something I like out of a saison within the beer to admire) - sadly, neither of these turned out to be the case - this beer is a god damned travesty - I’m not even sure they used an appropriate yeast here, but it doesn’t really matter, because all I can taste is a mouthful of muddled herbal character and harsh, aspirin-like bitterness - it tastes like I am chugging a lotion tester at Bath and Body Works at times - rough, crackery malts - characteristic Stone hop flavor actually saves this beer somewhat near the end - take me back to Scarborough Fair.
jb (2821) - Rochester, New York, USA - JUN 14, 2010
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
I don’t know much about this style and those that claim to seem quite passionate about the style and doing it right. In any event, I found this intriguing, and original. Apricot, bubblegum and pineapple in the nose. Bubbly appearance, thick small bubbled head. Bubble gum body but a rush of hops that surely is not characteristic of saison but of Stone. I liked it for its originality.
jazz88 (2650) - San Francisco, California, USA - JUN 13, 2010
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. A golden color with a white head. An inviting floral and spiced aroma. A somewhat sweet, herbal, citrus, and spiced flavor with only a touch of the saison barnyard at the finish. Quite nice. Thanks Karen and Thaddeus.
MartinT (9063) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 13, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
My Bottom Line:
Citrusy herbs and spicy hops evolve into a surprisingly biting finish in this über-clean and polished New World Saison.
Further Personal Perceptions:
-A sheet of foam tops the misty golden.
-The mouthfeel is too slick and clean to be an authentic Saison; there is no rusticity to be found. Then again, I don’t think this was an objective for them.
-The herbal spiciness is multifaceted and could also impersonate coriander, lemongrass, etc.
-The body is relatively light and the flavours are well organized throughout.
-This is redolent of Del Ducato’s New Morning Saison, but even that Italian brew has more rusticity to it. This Stone/Victory/DFH collaboration is extremely clean and almost spells out stainless steel, which is awkward for the style.
On tap at Toronado San Diego.
BMan1113VR (7914) - Los Angeles, California, USA - JUN 13, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Stone bottle (but with Bill’s spiel on the back). Pours with a nearly clear golden body and a small white head. Aroma of herbs and dryness. A decent amount of grapefruit/herbal hops as well.Thyme and rosemary stand out. Some citrus zest. Taste is bitter and dry. Very bitter. Nice grain and toast aspect. Herbal. Grape skins. Some grassy aspects. Light body, lively, bitter.
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - JUN 13, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle: Pours a transparent bright golden with a spotty-lacing froth of white head. Aroma of fresh floral hops and spices with a touch of biscuity pale malt. Starts with pretty good fullness and light sweet malty body well-balanced with fresh citrusy hops and rosemary spice finishing drier and crisp with a touch of warmth. Very true to style and enjoyable.