FlacoAlto (4133) - 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.
TURDFERGUSON (4039) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - OCT 6, 2011
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle, thanks emacgee for sharing! Hazy orange with a lasting white head. Looks nice. Nose is grassy and herbal, some lemon, and apple skins. Flavor is similar, bur the palate seems way too light and the tartness was more green apple-y than lemon which I wasn’t a big fan of. Solid, but not great.
ads135 (4011) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - JAN 2, 2016
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
An okay saison, though not much to separate it from competitors. Light citrus with a nice Belgian spice aroma.
DedicatedToFun (4000) - Santa Monica, California, USA - MAR 21, 2015
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tap, brewery, gold pour, white head, nose is grassy, taste is grassy, floral, herbs, nice
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - NOV 30, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Thanks to Ethan for sharing this bottle! Man, another killer saison from these folks. Would that they were cheaper and more available (yeah, right) as this would be a monstrous session beer. Cloudy pale orange with a big assertive head that rises in lovely shapes and leaves tons o’ lacing. Herbal and dry as fuck in the nose, and the Hallertau hops are strong. Didn’t get quite as much fruit to taste as my pals did, but it’s certainly there. Maybe that’s just because I love dry and spicy so much that I concentrated on those dimensions. Really yummy.
Nate (3998) - Indiana, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 17, 2014
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
On tap at the Knick. Mild funky nose, a little tart, with orange blossom, lactic acid, and some barnyard funk. Mild hazy light yellow-amber with creamy white lacing head. Medium body with medium-light carbonation. Very mild saison. Some coriander and wheat. Not very strong flavors but very pleasant. Watery finish and after, refreshing.
Homer321 (3958) - Melboring, Florida, USA - NOV 8, 2013
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Grate pils malt with a touch of pepper in the whiffer. Hazy light yellow. Large white head. Slightly tart, crisp, refreshing. Pleasant yeast phenols with pepper and a drying finish. Wow. This is light Saison DuPont table beer. Like avril. But fresh n good.
CanIHave4Beers (3942) - Pouring Bus, Iowa, USA - AUG 15, 2013
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours very pale with a huge rocky white head, I guess I don’t know what to say beyond that, except that it’s a damn nice looking glass of beer.
The aroma is simple primarily doughy and herbal with some light bright maltiness. Smells pretty great though...
The flavor is all sorts of satisfying. Bright, nicely hoppy in a good herbal way, the bitterness is @ a real nice moderate level. The beer is very dry & lightly tart with some very mild fruity character and some good grassiness. I mean, there isn’t much I don’t like about the beer and it ticks a whole lot of the right boxes for me.
The palate is lively and somewhat sharp.
Geeze, this stuff is fantastic.
Also wish for no more alcohol... 4.5% = low boost.
MrHangover (3802) - Den Haag, NETHERLANDS - SEP 30, 2015
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Sampled @ Borefts ’15. Pours a hazy golden beer with a big white head on top. Aroma of slight barnyard funk, lime, citrus. Flavor is light sweet, fruity and light tart. Very light bitter, fruity finish. Very nice!
maniac (3800) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - JAN 1, 2014
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
On 06/18/2011. Cloudy orange body with a small frothy white head. Sweet spice, fruit and light caramel aroma. Sweet spice, fruit and light tart flavor. Medium light body with moderate carbonation.