3fourths (8236) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - MAY 25, 2010
2.4 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
this is not how you do saison. saison needs a belgian yeast strain that produces vibrant spiced fruit esters and phenols, not a bath soap mess of a strain that smells and tastes like perfumed milk. saison needs proper bottle conditioning. saison does not requires a rough malt texture. and for damn sure saison does not need parsley, thyme, rosemary or sage. what a god damn shame.
ditmier (1508) - Boise, Idaho, USA - MAY 24, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2010 Bottle - Drinking in my hotel room once again...Pours a clear pale orange with a large frothy off white head...aroma is full of fruit and spicy, nice herbal element, grainy and citric...flavour is very similar, hate to say itís like pizza beer but with a larger malt profile, but it is, and I really like it...bitter citrus pith, clove, pizza spice, sweet fruity malt and dough...wow, kinda captivating...lingering hop bitterness to counter the bold malt...still puzzled by how much i like this...?
StefanSD (2191) - Lakeside, California, USA - MAY 24, 2010
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 5, 2010 12 oz bottle from Bev4less. Pours a slightly hazy yellow gold color with a small white head that slowly recedes to a fine ring. The aroma is rich with straw, herbs(I get rosemary in particular), and funky yeasts. The flavor is similar to the nose with lots of green herbs, wood, perhaps champagne and Belgian style yeasts. The palate is smooth and malty, with lively carbonation. The finish is medium in duration and dry. Overall: This is one outstanding saison, get it if you can.
GT2 (8742) - San Diego County, California, USA - MAY 23, 2010
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
355mL courtesy of PeteinSD. Pours a clear yellow with a very rocky, lively, off-white head with excellent sheety lace. Aroma is outstanding: fresh citrus hops, potpourri, orange juice, lively summer herbs, the sage really dominates. Taste is very herbal, some medicinal qualities, almost like mint toothpaste (no- I did not brush my teeth before trying this). Dry on the palate. Pretty good. The nose is really the best part and everything else is a little disappointing.
badlizard (5537) - Berkeley, California, USA - MAY 23, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Clear golden with a fluffy white head. An amazing aroma of sage and oddly eucalyptus and sweet malt. Good creamy palate. Tastes of sage, thyme, and rosemary with a good caramel back bone. Delicious and outstanding.
popery (1455) - San Francisco, California, USA - MAY 22, 2010
3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
UPDATED: JUN 16, 2010 City Beer Store. Light Golden beer with a big puffy white head. Lots of big bubbles and good lacing. The aroma is hugely herbal. It reminded me of a savory dish. Sage and rosemary are easier to pick out but itís all a pleasant muddle of savory herbs. The herbs make the malt aroma seem nice (mostly because I got sick of the herbs sorta quickly, despite them smelling pretty good). The flavor didnít really work for me. It seemed oddly bland for a saison, much less a saison full of herbs. Medium sweet. Not much in the flavor really sets this beer out as a saison, and it doesnít compare favorably to the heavy hitters from Belgium. Mouthfeel is relatively light. The beer is okay but off-style, and, in my opinion, it would have been better with more saison character and much less aggressive herbal notes.
rcubed (35) - Vista, California, USA - MAY 22, 2010
3.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a nice golden color with a nice white head. Seems fairly clear - just a slight haze to the beer. The aroma is where this beer is exceptional. You get the hops mixed in with the herbs with a slight sweetness. Taste-wise, Iím not sure how this compares to other saisons since I havenít tried many and itís been awhile since my last one. But I think they did an excellent job blending the hops with the herbs such that it doesnít over power the malt. It finishes a bit sweet with some piney notes in the palate at the end. Goes great with spicey food.
I wasnít sure what to expect from this beer and didnít think Iíd like it as much as I do. I had it on tap days after the release and it had a bit more bite in the bitterness to it than what Iím tasting in the bottle right now (could just be my taste buds today).
Iím looking forward to tasting the other collaborations that Stone has coming up.
nightrider (754) - encinitas, California, USA - MAY 22, 2010
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pour from a bottle gave a bright golden color and plentiful white top. Spicy aromas. Medium light body. Complex flavors of the herbs dumped in this brew of rosemary and sage. Good bit of bitter hops for a Saison also. Touch of sweet malt. This all works very well in my book and is very tasty and easy to drink. Like it alot!
BelgianBeerGal (3242) - Panama City, Florida, USA - MAY 21, 2010
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Draught at Stone Domination hosted by Aces & Ales. Alright, this makes more sense now that I have read the description. I liked it but kept thinking, "man thereís a lot going on here with some spices I did not expect." Of course what should I have expected between DFH and Stone. Fun to drink and unique without straying too far from the style.
Bludwig (31) - USA - MAY 19, 2010
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
I have not rated a saison on this forum yet. I havenít even read the other ratings on saisons, because I think it would break my heart to realize what the average American beer drinker thinks about complex and interesting beer. With that said, I do believe we now have an event worth talking about: Victory, Dogfish Head and Stone have collaborated! Itís a saison! With all this said, I must say that this is an event Iíve personally been waiting for, for quite some time.
Aroma: Oysters, cat piss and pine needles, literally. I would usually spare the good folks of rate beer my graphic definitions of smell, but this beer demands an explanation. The ocean beckons to me in the nose; salt air in the pine forest as I walk out to gather bushels of mollusks from the sandy beaches! Home! This beer took me home! With some more whiffs and exploration Iíve pinpointed a specific citrus thatís capturing my olfactory interest and I would have to say bravo Stone for having the knowledge in hops to create such an experience.
Appearance: I am a fan of head. This beer had some initial head but quickly faded into the lacy middle with foamy outskirts, an appearance most are used to seeing from forced carbonated ales in America. The color is pleasantly amber/golden, but I do wish with all of the attention to detail this beer had, why isnít it bottle conditioned!?
Taste/Palate: Pepper, ginger, candy citron and a smooth, super dry hop finish. This ale is so complex itís hard to pin down. I give it time to reveal its secrets and more unusual flavors are revealed! A very present spine of grapefruit has definitely emerged throughout the entire experience, but there is a strong hop presence to combine with the grapefruit to add acidity and balance. The beer wants to scream fruity fun but restrains itself into a refreshing ale of great character.
Overall: Why donít more breweries collaborate? If youíre New Belgium I understand, thereís no bling bling in it. For everyone else, thereís only creativity and expanding the culture of beer. I donít think everyone will be able to even get a hold of this beauty, but if you do cherish it for what it is and what it means!