FlacoAlto (3450) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - JUN 9, 2011
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
I didn’t give it time to clear in the bottle, but given how the bottle was stratifying it looks like this could be close to brilliantly clear if given the chance. A solid pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip (definitely the perfect glass for a Saison of this strength) produces a four-finger thick, pale tan tinged, off-white colored head. The head, as it slowly subsides leaves some nice layered lacing on the sides of my glass. The beer has a hazy, pale amber color, that shows a brighter version of the same when held up to the light. The aroma smells of fruit backed by grain, then a touch of spice. The fruitiness definitely seems characteristic of Wyeasts Thierez yeast (if that is what is used here), with notes of apple cider, touches of melon, and ripe pear. There is a hint of phenolic character here, a touch of mustiness, both of which meld in with the soft, hay like grain character, touches of biscuit like grain and whole grain breadiness that is here. There is a soft herbal spiciness to this brew that is quite a bit more subtle than I was hoping for, this is from the hops, but is a bit more subtle in the nose than I might prefer.
Bone dry tasting, which is accentuated by a prickly carbonation and there is also a fair more tartness than I was expecting; this isn’t a sour beer by any means, but the tartness nicely accentuates some of the fruitiness, in place of a usual malt sweetness perhaps. The fruitiness reminds me of tart pears, with perhaps a touch of floral apple, which is about opposite the relative presence that the aroma has. The hops are more present in the flavor than in the nose, though this is by no means a hoppy beer; they provide a lightly herbal bitterness that adds some firmness to the finish, a gentle spiciness towards the middle and just a soft, integrated hop-herbal character to the entire flavor of this beer. As the beer warms up, more of floral hop component starts to come out & this pairs quite well with the touch of tartness and the fruit character from the yeast. The malt character is fairly subtle here, I expect a bit more of a crackling grain presence (is this perhaps a little old), but there is a nicely soft munich malt presence towards the finish here (contributing a lightly toothsome, whole-grain character), as well as some straw-like, pale grain & perhaps cracker like character in the middle of each sip. The body is about perfect; it is quite light, but has some touches of viscousness to it (perhaps even a hint of lactic slickness) that make this beer interesting enough
This is one of the few commercial, US Saisons that is aligned with the way I like to brew my own. I like the soft, seemingly lactic, tartness that is found in this beer. A beer of this strength, with all of the flavor that this beer has, is right up my alley; I absolutely love lower alcohol beers just like this and this is certainly no exception. I would happily drink a lot of this, and if I didn’t already brew a bunch of beer just like this, I would buy a bunch of it given the opportunity. Personally, I like a touch more carbonation (though this is amply carbonated), a more defined / brighter grain character (did they just use American malt in this), and a touch more hop presence (I was excited to taste a significant Hallertau Mittelfrüh contribution that isn’t quite here), but like I said, I am a sucker for beers like this so this Saison is quite enjoyable. I managed to complain quite a bit about a beer I liked so much.
ucusty (2693) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - JUN 5, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
One of my favorite saisons from these guys! Thanks chuckles! Hazy straw gold pour with a fluffy white head and moderate lace. Aroma is lemongrass, hay and a slight twist of lacto. Wish I would have saved this one to drink in the sweltering NC summer heat. Lemons, straw, wheat and some floral notes. Dry tart and refreshing
blankboy (5152) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAY 9, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle [750ml] shared with and courtesy of HogTownHarry at Volo. Pours a cloudy copper-gold with lots of tiny sediments and an average size diminishing frothy white. Decent lacing on the glass. Nice aroma, slightly mild, of lightly tart fruit, Belgian yeast, herbs & spices, citrus fruit and some light leafy hops. Flavour of yeast, lightly sour fruit, citrus, spices and light grassy hops-- not Upright’s most flavourful beer but very easy to drink nonetheless. Average bodied. Another fine Saison from these guys and a treat to drink -- a session beer for sure.
daknole (7204) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - MAY 6, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Cloudy gold. White head. Lemon, white pepper, yeast, coriander aroma. Flavor is lemony, spice, yeast, light bready notes. Awesome.
joeneugs (2144) - Livermore, California, USA - APR 29, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours yellow with a small white head. The aroma is grassy and lightly spiced with lemon, coriander and wheat. The flavor is tart and very wheaty with a nice hint of citrus peel. Just a bit of lacto and lemony orange before a really nice crisp, bitter finish. The body is light and refreshing. Its kind of like a berliner weisse crossed with a Belgian wit crossed with a Saison. I loved it. Great for pairing with food.
jzzbassman (1362) - New Albany, Mississippi, USA - APR 17, 2011
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle courtesy of After4ever. Hazy light gold pour, with a tightly whipped white head. Aroma is yeast, tart fruit, and musty hops. Lemon and earthy flavors mix well, making it really appetizing and one your mouth keeps asking for more of. Finishes pleasing and dry. Outstanding!
Tsotsi (178) - Florida, USA - APR 12, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
750ml bottle thanks to Scrizz. Pours a hazy orange color with a white head.
Nose is citrus especially orange, sour, and a bit of spices. Flavors are sour, nice orange flavor and end with a dry finish. Nice and light to medium body and very refreshing. Great saison.
Cletus (6177) - Connecticut, USA - APR 1, 2011
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle courtesy of riversideAK. Pours copper with a white head. Smells funky some floral notes, dry malty hints. Tastes of light citrus, dry, spicy, nice carbonation. Excellent table beer!
bb (5888) - Alamo, California, USA - MAR 30, 2011
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Amber beer with an off-white head. Spice and yeast aroma with hay and wheat. Wheat and yeast flavor with light spice. Medium bodied. Wheat and light spice lingers with yeast and earth.
JohnnyJ (3533) - San Diego, California, USA - MAR 24, 2011
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pale hazy gold pour, with dense white head. Rough biscuity malt, citrus, hay, slightly tart, lemon grass, and pepper. I really like this, complex, light, refreshing, and well made.