corby112 (2804) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 10, 2011
2.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 9/20
Pours a dark chocolate brown color that appears pitch black in the glass with a 1.5 finger light beige head that slowly fades into a lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.
Slightly smokey malt aroma with a strong anise/licorice presence along with dark roasted malts, peppery spice and earthy funk. Just a really odd combination for the style, resulting in a nose that fails for the style but is still somewhat interesting.
Medium bodied with a strong spice character up front that lingers over the sweet malty backbone and saison yeast into a slightly dry finish. Lots of peppery spices along with some anise/licorice flavor dominate the flavor but are countered mid-palate by a silky chocolate malt backbone. The malt profile is also very strong and along with the spices take away almost any trace of this beer tasting like a saison. This sounded like an interesting experiment in theory but in execution it falls flat.
jzzbassman (1577) - Arlington, Texas, USA - NOV 6, 2011
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
22 oz bomber. Pours dark walnut with a tan foamy head. Aroma of tar, cumin, and black malt. Flavor is strongly of artificial grape at the beginning, but with a bit of rye spice. Interesting but I have trouble seeing this as a Saison.
blafa (511) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - NOV 2, 2011
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sampled at Akkurat. Stockholm, September 28th, 2011.
Peppery aroma with notes of asphalt, spices and hoppy flowers. Rich taste that is quite flowery and nice. Very spicy. Light sweetness with a fairly alcoholic finish.
Heathen (1500) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - NOV 1, 2011
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
THOUGHTS: They didn’t quite nail it, but they come really close. Fantome does a better job at going dark while retaining Saison flavors. This was very nice, thou. Not much hops, but the bitter roasted malts filled in just fine.
TECHNICAL: Bottle. Poured a very dark, red that was basically black in the glass with beautiful carbonation that constantly tried to rebuild the head. It also had a large, tan head that very slowly diminished and kept a decent shett and left good to excellent lacing. The aroma had moderate caramel; lighter dark chocolate and coffee; moderate to heavy dusty and spicy yeast; plum; pear; tobacco; cherry juice; fruity candy; and slight citrus. The initial flavor was lightly sweet, lightly bitter and light to moderately acidic; while the finish was moderately bitter and moderately acidic with an average to long duration. There was roasted malt, a little coffee, a little bitter dark chocolate, very fruity and yeasty, black cherry, spicy yeast, pepper, and a little citrus fruit. The medium body was oily and a bit creamy and then rather dry with lightly fizzy carbonation and a slightly metallic and light to moderately astringent finish.
dcschiller (2207) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - OCT 30, 2011
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
(22oz bottle courtesy of maltzilla). Pours dark brown-almost black with a fluffy khaki head. Active carbonation. Aroma is perfumey, belgian yeast, florals, faint spice. Taste is sweet with some spice, roast and some bitterness. More gentle taste-and less sweet-than it smells. Medium bodied with slick texture. Smooth finsih. Not bad, and better, in fact, than I expected.
VTHopHead (1511) - Barre, Vermont, USA - OCT 23, 2011
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle/22oz - Pours a clear black color with a small foamy tan head. Aroma of roasted malts and slight earthy funk. Flavor is lightly roasty with few hops and some light earthy barnyard. Not that true to the Saison style, but good anyway...
Nate (4113) - Indiana, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 20, 2011
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
On tap at Piper’s Pub. Roasted bitter malt notes with light roasted barley and chocolate. Very little in the way of hops or yeast. Dark brown-black opaque, like a stout, with creamy lacing tan head. Medium body with medium carbonation. Starts dry and roasty with herbal bitter notes, roasted barley, light tang, and some floral hops. Lemongrass and herbs with a tang. Rubbery. Decent but I’m not sure I’m quite a fan yet of black saisons.
Hawksfan17 (890) - Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - OCT 15, 2011
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Roasted Malt with sour notes and hints of fruit. Pours black brown with a mocha head. Flavor is similar with a light finish. It was a bit carbonated for me.
Boutip (5795) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - SEP 29, 2011
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle: Poured a dark black color ale with a medium size dirty white foamy head with OK retention and some light lacing. Aroma of light roasted malt with some rustic notes and light peppery yeast. Taste is not as complex as anticipated with a weird mix between some dry roasted malt and some light rustic notes and light funky yeast notes. Body is about average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Lacking subtlety that makes Saison such a nice style – roasted malt idea is interesting but really not necessary.
thirdeye11 (6019) - Dallas, Texas, USA - SEP 20, 2011
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
(22oz bomber thanks to blutt59) clear ruby-deep brown with dark tan head. Nose is chalky, stewed tomatoes, and a bit spicy. Taste is spicy, Belgian, tomatoes, just weird. Well carbonated body.