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Sgt. Pepper - Cambridge Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sgt. PepperSgt. Pepper

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

285 Ratings
THE BROS
96
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 285
Reviews: 81
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 15.55%
Wants: 8
Gots: 27 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Cambridge Brewing Company visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 03-18-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 285 | Reviews: 81 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of t0rin0
3.25/5  rDev -12.9%

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.15/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the brewpub back in March 2009.

A: Slightly reddish with a decent head and lacing that sticks fairly well.

S: The aroma of all the types of pepper is quite appetizing.

T: While the pepper was good in the smell, there's just a little too much going on here--it's simply overpowering. Aside from the pepper, I can pick out some sweetness and a little bit of the Belgian yeast character.

M: Fairly light body, but again overtaken by the pepper.

D: Okay. I really like this brew in theory, but the execution was just a little bit off.

Photo of nmann08
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of Texasfan549
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

Photo of GRG1313
2.5/5  rDev -33%

Photo of metter98
3.99/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is slightly hazy golden yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high white head that died down, consistently leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of black peppercorns are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the overall taste is very much dominated by flavors of black peppercorns but also has some notes of other spices and hints of Belgian yeast.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. The peppercorns make it feel slightly prickly on your tongue.
O: This is an enjoyable saison if you like peppercorns because that is pretty much all you get in the smell and taste from start to finish. While it is not complex, I found it to be rather drinkable because it's not too spicy.

Photo of kjkinsey
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of BEERchitect
3.46/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

"Holy peppercorn, Batman!"

Cambridge's not-so-subtle, pepper infused, Belgian-style Saison kicks off with an exuberent golden pour. Lightly hazed, the bubbly elixir thrusts its carbonation into a fluffy, short statured head that cowers to the pepper additions and falls apart relatively soon after the pour, leaving no meaningful lace behind.

But the aromas are alive with the tingle of freshly cracked black peppercorns. As the spice tantelizes the olfactory senses, other background notes lurk in the pepper's shadows: green apple, pear, and berries give a fruity tone that make the low-lying malt a bit more apparent.

And its the taste of pepper that dominates the flavor profile. Early grain sweetness is lightly bready and dryly starched. But then the spicy pepper taste greets the front of the tongue with husky, rye-like character except it continues to intensify to near capsasin-like taste. Although soft under-ripened orchard fruit and yeast spices keep the beer wine-like, the sharpness of peppercorn makes the more finesse elements in balance go largely unnoticed.

The dry malt taste translates well to texture, but allows for the abruptness of peppercorn to spike the tongue with intense heat and prickling sensations. Finishing hot from the spice additions, the beer dries early on the palate and stays that way through the aftertaste.

In general, the Saison base beer is solid but not absolutely authentic. But the peppercorn additions through the balance way off for me. I'm sure that those who prefer hotter cuisine than I will appreciate the beer much better. I'm glad I split the large bottle with a friend as the whole contents would surely incite heartburn.

Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden/orange in color with a white head. The pepper aroma on this is huge. That’s pretty much all I smell, actually. A bit of sweetness from the bready and toffee malt. The flavor is nice. It’s a bit sweet and very peppery. And that’s pretty much it. While enjoyable, a small pour is really all that I could handle.

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.94/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

never really had anything like this beer. poured into a wine glass a moderately cloudy pale orange color, compatible with the label on the bottle. patchy white head is all, but it is very well carbonated despite that. it smells like good hearty saison yeast, and a little citrus, but I don't smell much pepper in this at all. the first sip reminds me of nerds candy. sweet, but then you suck all the color off and you are left with that white crystal that tastes like both sugar and salt. sweet and savory, that's how this one starts. it finishes with a whole lot of pepper though, it continues to intensify long after the swallow, a characteristic that is even more pronounced as the beer warms up. a mix of peppercorns maybe, but no chili. still its a little hot on the tongue. the spice goes well with the natural spice from the yeast, a very unique and intriguing flavor experience. light enough to drink a lot of, and bubbly enough. a great first impression for me from Cambridge, who is just recently in the state of Colorado.

Photo of JAHMUR
3/5  rDev -19.6%

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.99/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 3/15/2013 at British Beer Company in Walpole, MA, served in a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color, with a short white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains wheat, spices, Belgian yeast, bananas, caramelized malts and some hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of spice, bananas and caramel. Then some breadiness comes in from wheat, Belgian yeast and a hearty but not too heavy malt character. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The spiciness strengthens as you continue to drink the beer. The after-taste is spicy and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, it’s a good beer to drink if you’re looking for something a little different.

Photo of jlindros
4.16/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First batch, bottled Feb 2012.1

Pours a descent fizzy 1/2 finger head that fades semi quickly, crystal clear golden almost nectar orange color.

Nose has lots of belgian malts, golden malts with some sweetness, hints of Belgian yeast esters, and plenty of pepper aromas, touches of bright fruit.

Taste brings plenty of pepper right off, peppercorns, a bit of green pepper and quite spicy peppercorn, Belgian golden malts, juicy malts with a bit of bright fruit and touch of esters both from the yeast. Hint of yeast spices and a light farmhouse like yeast flavors. Finish is a bit drier, quite spicy from the peppercorns, hint of malts.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall interesting and tasty, nice Belgian malts, spices fruits and hint if esters from the yeast, and a nice dose of pepper.

Photo of oline73
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

Photo of MasterSki
2.85/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Reagan1984 for this oddity. Batch 1 from February 2012. Served in a tulip.

A - Quick-dissolving white foam settles to a thin ring, wisps, and minimal lace. Hazy peach flesh body.

S - Tons of peppercorns, spicy esters, herbal and zesty hops(?), and some peach and other stone fruits from the malts.

T - Taste is overwhelmed with white pepper flavor, as well as some vegetal notes, and spicy black pepper and chile heat? Maybe a touch of saison in the periphery.

M - Smooth body, with zesty carbonation, and a very dry finish. No obvious alcohol, which is a plus.

D - Too peppery, even for my tastes. Not the easiest beer to drink. Kind of interesting to try, but Jason and I barely finished our pours.

Photo of mendvicdog
3.25/5  rDev -12.9%

Photo of Rifugium
3.81/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

First had: on tap at CBC

Hazy golden-amber pour with a wispy white head that stuck as a ringlet and left a few dots of lacing on the glass. Aroma of toasted grains, peppery spice, with hints of earthy yeast. They weren't kidding with the peppercorn aspect of this beer, as it was front and center in the taste, earthy yeast, pale malts, and a mild fruity sensation. Body was light-medium, moderate carbonation, making for an interesting and quaffable brew overall.

Photo of DrunkinYogi
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of smcolw
3.45/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not much head and what's there settles to rom bubbles. No lace. The liquid is straw-gold color with a haze.

Sour and earthy aroma. Light black pepper in the program.

The black pepper is the predominant flavor here. It makes for an interesting blend with the traditional farm house sourness and earthy flavors. Solid body with an above average carbonation level.

Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +34%

Photo of kojevergas
3.79/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired at a local SoCal beer store. This is only the second beer I've had from Cambridge Brewing. Expectations are high; I' love a good farmhouse ale and I'm really in the mood for one. Curiously, it has a World Beer Cup award for the Herb and Spice Beer category. 6% ABV confirmed. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing label and unbranded standard pressure cap served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. I don't see any obvious best before or bottled on dates.

Served cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger white colour head - disappointingly thin - of no cream whatsoever and mere average retention. The ABV isn't even that high; I'm pretty disappointed with the head. Lacing is light and even. Body colour is a fairly vibrant clear bronze. Translucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Looking substandard for a farmhouse ale. It's not much to look at. Appears filtered.

Sm: Definite peppercorn presence. Pale malts. Fragrant floral hops. I do pick up on the rye malt, but I wouldn't have noticed it if I hadn't been searching for it after reading the label. Spicy robust yeasty character with notes of biscuit and clove. It's not that spicy in comparison to other farmhouse ales, but it's got a definite spice presence. The pepper is quite evocative; that's remarkable. I'm looking forward to trying it, but I do want more depth and complexity from the aroma. Nicely subtle and above average in strength. No alcohol is noticeable.

T: Remarkable peppery character throughout - both black and white pepper is noticeable. The rye really complements the spicy character on the climax going into the third act; that's a lovely pairing of flavours. The floral hop character lends a pleasant background flavour letting the spices and yeasty complexity take centre stage - exactly as it should. Malty foundation is well-executed rye alongside light biscuity grains and I suspect some pale malts. Spice, light biscuit, and clove from the yeast. Peppery spice is definitely dominant here; I love that. Make no mistake - it's spicy in the sense that lots of spice notes come through, but there's also a bit of spicy heat here. Fortunately, no alcohol heat is noticeable. Impeccable balance, even if it is a bit simple for the style. These cats really knew what they were doing when they brewed this gem. If you're after a peppery-as-hell farmhouse ale, this is the beer for you. Subtly executed. I'm really enjoying it.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Understated. Near ideal carbonation; it's just a touch too high - but that'll help it cellar if you're so inclined. Good thickness and body. Complements the flavour profile well - mostly by keeping its head down, supporting the flavours, and not making itself noticeable. It even approaches refreshing - a nice counterpoint to the spicy pepper of the flavours. This texture was developed with intentionality, and the marriage to the flavour profile is rewarding. Well-executed. Not creamy or buttery or milky. Excellent presence on the palate. Just soft enough.

Dr: A surprisingly good farmhouse ale from Cambridge Brewing. I'd definitely pick this one up again; I'm glad I stumbled across it. I'm now very interested in trying their other beers. Surpassed my meagre expectations. Very drinkable, but the spice may creep up on you. The low ABV for the style makes this a go-to when you're trying to stay coherent. They aimed to brew an extremely peppery farmhouse ale, and damnit, they succeeded. The execution is great for the concept. Well done, Cambridge. I'd recommend this to friends.

Low B+

Photo of stakem
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber into a snifter, the brew appears a clear color of golden yellow with a big white frothy head. The sudsy white topping fades leaving fingers of patchy lace sticking to the glass. A light swirl revives.

The aroma is solid with the advertised pepper. Freshly crushed array of peppercorns but not harsh like the normal black. Taking a guess that white, pink or green were used in a more mellow to almost fruity zesty sense. A touch of saison yeast fruity quality with a bit of earthen aspect is also felt through the nose.

The taste includes a solid array of pepper and fruit. Lots of peppery quality comes off subtle from perhaps the yeast and then gets augmented by the addition of what seems like freshly cracked peppercorns. It is yeasty and spicy with a warming feel. A bit floral and a hint of green bell pepper. The warming sensation across the back of the tongue is reminescent of black pepper.

This is a medium bodied brew with an effervescent level of carbonation. Quite a pleasant warming spice of alcohol accented by pepper. This at times flirts with te heat of crushed red pepper, but not that extreme. If you have never experienced peppery flavor in a saison before, this is the one to really drive that character home. However, it might be off-putting to some. I liked it.

Photo of Billolick
3.66/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber, bottled in 4-13

Pours hazed medium amber, with a slight golden hue. Minor head quickly departing, and leaves just a hint of a film, no collar and nearly no lace...ehh look to this one fo sure...

Just a hint of yeast and pepper on the nose.

Other have mentioned how this is sort of a one note brew...and the note is pepper...lots of pepper..I like pepper in my saisons, but more is needed here.

Carbonation on the low side

Not my favorite saison. Barely worth a try as there are a lot of more interesting and worthy saisons out there...go try some

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Sgt. Pepper from Cambridge Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 285 ratings.