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Ovila Abbey Saison - Mandarin Oranges & Peppercorns - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Ovila Abbey Saison - Mandarin Oranges & PeppercornsOvila Abbey Saison - Mandarin Oranges & Peppercorns

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

364 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 364
Reviews: 85
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 9.76%

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Jason on 05-06-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 364 | Reviews: 85 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of ChristopherTenore


4.36/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

A) Dark orange to copper in color. When it was poured a thin white head formed and didn't linger for long. A perlage slowly and constantly flows from the bottom to the surface of the beer.

S) Slight Hops hit your nose than you get the sweetness and citrus aromas form the mandarin oranges. The peppercorns leave a buttery almost oaked smell to the beer as well.

T) The beer is extremely complex. There is an acidic quality to the flavor that gives way quickly to the sweetness of the orange. Then the peppercorns come in leaving you with a little heat and an almost woody finish. The peppercorns linger in the finish of the beer on the tip of your tongue. As well as a nice hopped under note.

MF) Smooth creamy and velvety, a nice amount of carbonation is present. The peppercorns dance around on the tip of your tongue. It leaves with a nice clean finish.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2013 16:30:43 | More by ChristopherTenore
Photo of bnes09


4.33/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Deep orange, transparent ale with lots of visible bubbles. Sudsy, off white with good retention and some lacing.

Nice aroma of lemon, orange, herbs, wheat and straw. Hint of yeast and mild pepper in the mix as well.

Smooth biscuit, wheat-like, buttery malt character underneath a spicy herbal hop. Sweet and slightly tart oranges hit the tongue. White pepper and cloves. Mild yeast qualities round out the flavor. Extremely well balanced.

Medium bodied. Smooth fell with a sharp carbonation. Crisp finish.

Great saison. Love the flavors that were added. Highly complex, yet well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2014 23:14:04 | More by bnes09
Photo of MattyG85


4.21/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12.7 oz. corked bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep copper amber orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. About one finger of off white head that fades into a thin patch. Leaves a good amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A yeasty and spicy malt forward aroma with lots of citrus fruit hints. Upfront Belgian yeast with farmhouse funk and some clove. Big hints of white and black pepper. Slight coriander hint. Pale malt with hints of grains, straw, caramel, wheat, and cracker. Big citrus fruit presence with hints of the mandarin orange, lemon zest, and pineapple. Sweet Belgian candied sugar. Light hints of grassy hops and some alcohol. A pretty solid aroma.

Taste: Like the smell hints at, a yeasty and spicy malt forward taste with a big citrus orange presence. Belgian yeast with some upfront farmhouse funk, clove, peppercorn, and coriander spicing. Bready malts with a taste of grains, straw, wheat, caramel, and cracker. Big fruit presence with notes of mandarin orange, lemon zest, and pineapple. Sweet notes of candied Belgian sugar. Subtle backing of grassy hops. Slight alcohol taste is noticeable. A pretty good and interesting taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Spicy, juicy, and slightly syrupy. Slight alcohol bite is felt.

Overall: A pretty good spin on a Saison/Farmhouse. Good mix of funk and spices with the oranges.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2013 06:22:01 | More by MattyG85
Photo of Chaney

District of Columbia

4.16/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and caged, popped, and served in a Stone tulip.

A: Poured out a fairly translucent orange, apricot color, with a slight chill haze. The head was about 1/8 finger at best.

S: Lots of mandarin oranges here... almost dessert-like in its disposition. I definitely got some kick from the pepper as well.

T: Delicious, however, if you're looking for farmhouse funk, look elsewhere. This had a very straight-forward fruit component from start and especially the finish, not dry, and with a hint of pepper in the middle.

M: Fairly low in terms of carbonation bill, but it was all good. It was sweet, but not in the least bit sticky. Very smooth and with a slight booze burn in the middle.

O: I guess I liked this a lot more than most. I'm a sucker for this kind of stuff.

Serving type: bottle

06-18-2013 22:43:17 | More by Chaney
Photo of rajendra82


4.16/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

It is very unusual to see a beer shipped in 12.7 oz. bottles, and a four pack of smaller bottles like this closed with a cork and wire cage. The unusual packaging, label art, and beer style promised something different. The beer poured out reddish amber in color, with a very small ring of bubbles forming on the top. The smell of funky yeast, spicy and floral in its overtones, was just perfect for the style. Pepper was evident when I took deeper whiffs. The taste was very citric, as lemon juice, orange peel, and grapefruit seemed to burst across the tongue. The pepper was only noticeable in the finish. The beer was very dry on the palette because of the sour and pepper combinations, but I like my Saisons on the dry side. If I was to fault anything, I would say there was not enough pepper in here. Next time kick that up a few notches please.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2013 04:42:01 | More by rajendra82
Photo of Jadjunk


4.04/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

"An homage to the monks' noble work, this unique farmhouse ale is incredibly complex with notes of lemon, pepper, straw and herbs balanced by the tang of Mandarin oranges and a spicy kick of pepper. The Mandarin oranges used to make this beer were locally grown, including a portion grown on the grounds of the Abbey of New Clairvaux and picked by hand by the community of monks living there. We hope you enjoy this collaboration ale." Brewed in the style of a Saison. This marks the latest limited-release collaboration between Sierra Nevada and the Abbey of New Clairvaux, the seventh in the Ovila series, and the third bottled in nifty 4 packs of miniature single-serving bottles.

Poured from a 12.7fl oz. bottle to a Ovila goblet. Served north of º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a frothy golden white head over a copper amber tone body, with a slight haze and moderate, relaxed carbonation. Retention is average, lacing is light and clingy and surface cover holds strong. Appearance is decent, although not particularly impressive for the style. 3.25

(Smell) Notes of clean Belgian malt bread with a very familiar Belgian yeast strain, always a safe choice for Saisons, it adds an approachable acidity to the malt as well as a touch of bright spice and wafts of tropical fruits like pear, pineapple and tangerine to the aroma. Despite the already existing fruit basket of aroma, this beer focuses around a moderate orange addition that provides a light syrupy orange sweetness as well as a modest orange-rind tartness as well. It is quite possibly mandarin based on my aroma impressions. Blending in all too nicely with the yeast's spice encore, the peppercorns add a touch of earthy zest, although not as potent as the orange character. I am glad they take a backseat lest they otherwise complicate this very inviting aroma. 4.25

(Taste) Orange accents most parts of the drinking experience, and for the most part it works out very well. The malt front is a clean, dry biscuity and light bready Belgian malt with banana esters and a subtle spritely spice- coriander and possibly peppercorn. It finishes out with with a tart citrus rind and light syrup on a mild bready malt finish, accented by a perky pepper and spice note. The mild viscosity of the citrus syrup makes this a touch heavier-bodied than predicted via the aroma but the flavors are overall very well preserved and presented, complementing each other gracefully. Despite a touch of residual sweetness, there's no doubting this as a well-crafted Saison. 4

(Mouthfeel) Malt texture is slick, very lightly syrupy sweet from the mandarin. Carbonation adds a modest level of zippy carbonation for a spritely texture that gels well with the mandarin zest and spice. The body is slightly over medium for a Saison, medium overall, perhaps a touch heavier drinking than the finest-balanced Saisons manage. Alcohol presence is low, not perfectly concealed by the cleanliness this beer presents. Despite this , there are far more hits than misses in the build of the mouthfeel. 4.25

(Overall) Far and away the finest entry in the Ovila project to date- Sierra Nevada should keep working their magic on innovating these Belgian light styles. I greatly enjoyed the mandarin orange addition, even if it came out mostly in sweetness, there was some complimentary orange zest on the finish and a touch of orange body throughout. The peppercorns, while arguably underutilized, may have added some zip to the already standard Belgian yeast spice encore, and certainly brought a faint note of earthy flavor to the beer, very faint but enjoyable. I'm certainly not regretting this purchase in the least and recommend this to anybody who may be a fan of Saisons. 4

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.'s
Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Saison Ale Brewed with Mandarin Oranges And Peppercorns

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2013 03:18:18 | More by Jadjunk
Photo of cbutova


4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

First of all I have no idea what an Abbey Saison is but I am excited to try it.

A- Poured into a large tulip glass from the corked 375ml bottle. Cork opens with a nice bang and the beer pours with a slightly hazy dark orange body. A creamy and silky white head forms to just over a finger high and retains quite well. A nice frothy cloud and ring stays on the beer for a long time. Lacing is fairly spotty.

S- Aroma remind me of a Trappist yeast with some Saison mixed in. Citrus and spices are prevalent. Pepper, herbs, general Belgian spice and some darker fruit/raisin sugars come to mind.

T- Really takes some time to get a feel for this one. It has the feel of both a Trappist and Saison yeast strain which throws my taste buds all over. With time the beer has a very herbal and spicy feel overall with hints of pepper, nutmeg, thyme and spiced raisins. The addition of oranges gives of a slightly bitter zesty flavor that blends in nicely. I get a slightly cracked grain and candi-sugar feel as far as malts go.

MF- Super silky and somewhat creamy body that has a medium-light consistency. Carbonation is foamy but still creamy and super smooth at a pretty high level. Herbal and spicy bitterness on the palate.

Really feels like a well-done blend of two "styles." The Saison aspect comes in nicely with the citrus and peppery feel. The Abbey feel has a nice Candi-sugar and spicy yeast feel. The complexity and originality is nice, underrated beer IMO.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2013 03:20:53 | More by cbutova
Photo of Seanniek91

Rhode Island

4.01/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 375ml C&C bottle into a Hill Farmstead Stemmed Tulip. My 150th review I believe.

Appearance- Very nice orange/red with little to no head.

Smell- Definantly mandarin orange, light pepper, yeast, solid malt back bone. The orange dominates, but the spicy characteristics are still there as well.

Taste- Follows the nose exactly to the T. Heavy mandarin orange, lighter pepper notes, belgian yeast. Pretty much how they described it.

Mouthfeel- Lighter carbonation with a lighter body. Very nice summer beverage. No hint of booze heat either.

Overall- A nice beer fruited saison from Sierra Nevada. Pleasantly surprised with this one.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2013 16:30:37 | More by Seanniek91
Photo of stakem


4.01/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375ml corked and caged bottle poured into a snifter. The brew appears a clear copper color with a persistent white head supported by rising bubbles. The cap holds throughout the duration with a finger atop.

The aroma comes across like candied oranges...almost a marmalde of sorts with yeasty spice and a faint clove accent. An interesting remix on a classic smelling brew.

The taste includes notes of oranges with a bit zest and almost candied like the aroma suggested with a hint io lemon and ginger. It is yeasty and earthen with a mild peppery spice.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest level of carbonation. It is smooth and quite nice. Drinking this was quite effortless and I would not mind having again.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2013 16:38:10 | More by stakem
Photo of JohnnyMc


4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another addition in the Ovila series.

Pours out a decently dark golden type of orange with a finger of an off-white head.

The aroma has a big punch of orange right up front along with some fruity yeast esters. There are some subtle clove and banana notes, a straw type of smell, some bready malt and a bit of peppery spice.

The taste also has a huge amount of a sweet orange and a nice amount of fruity yeast esters up front. There are some very subtle notes of banana and clove and some of that bready malt on the back end. The spiciness is there, but it's not as spicy as I would have thought given the addition of peppercorns.

The body is medium and the mouthfeel is crisp with a decent amount of carbonation. The ABV is hidden very well.

This is a nice take on a Belgian style, but just like with the Ovila Quad the Belgian breweries do these styles much better. A very nice beer and certainly worth trying though.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2013 23:08:52 | More by JohnnyMc
Photo of theyeastyboy


3.99/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served out of a bottle into a tulip glass.

The appearance on the Ovila Abbey Saison with Mandarin Oranges and Peppercorns is a medium to dark amber color. Light shines through the glass readily as this beer is very clear. From the looks of it, the beer has been filtered and was not bottle conditioned. This is not necessarily a downside, but odd for a saison in my experience. Bubbles are streaming up from the bottom of the glass, indicating a good bit of carbonation. On the initial pour, there was at least a finger of head that dissipated somewhat after a few minutes to a half finger head. The head has a mixture of medium and small bubbles.

On the nose, there is an apparent Belgian yeast character. Additionally, there is some light citrus and a peppery note but nothing that sticks out substantially. No hop bitterness is detectable.

The taste of this beer is very juicy and refreshing. The lack of mandarin and citrus on the nose is very prevalent in the taste. On the front of the tongue is a prickly sensation most likely from the peppercorns, and towards the middle the citrusy sweetness takes over. Compared to other saisons I have had, this one is much less drying but thirst quenching as result of the citrus. The finish consists of a stronger yeast character and bready taste that is enjoyable. In the back of the throat, there is a bit of warmth from the alcohol, which is surprising at 7.5% abv.

In terms of the mouthfeel, this beer is more full bodied than one would expect. The carbonation is lighter than I anticipated based on the original bubbles, but after swallowing, the taste lingers on the palate. This is nice because citrus is primarily what is hanging around and the spiciness is absent.

Overall, while a definite diversion from the traditional style, I enjoyed this very much. It lacked some of the complexity that many yeasty farmhouse saisons procure, but the citrus taste is very refreshing and the addition of the peppercorns is subtle. I purchased a single of this beer and would consider buying another single, but at ~$14 a 4-pack, it is unlikely that I will pick up a whole one.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2013 01:39:27 | More by theyeastyboy
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.99/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - orangish amber with a huge, off white head that is thick and dense and has really good retention

S - big saison yeast in the nose; spicy, pears, peppery

T - husk, spicy yeast, peppery, oranges are faint but they're there in the background, some hints of lemon zest, mildly earthy bitter finish

M - medium bodied, some faint alcohol warmth, well carbonated

This is a nice saison. I was hoping for a more forward presence from both the oranges and the peppercorns, but they're both rather subdued. The peppercorns seem to be more forward because they compliment the already spicy yeast well. The oranges are subtle and show themselves more in the finish. Overall, this is a nice saison with a very enjoyable flavor profile. I enjoyed this beer though I was a tad disappointed with the presence of the mandarin oranges.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2013 23:16:29 | More by tdm168
Photo of thegodfather1076


3.99/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Very cool old fashioned looking bottle and label that is classy yet eye-catching. Artwork and font is very attractive. Front label states “Brewed in collaboration with The Abbey of New Clairvaux, gives ABV info, a bit of brewery info, states “Monastic Inspiration”, states “ American Innovation”. Back label gives web info, a nice back story and description of the beer. Cork and cage bottle.

Appearance: An aggressive pour from its 12.7oz brown bottle into a 16oz Imperial Pint led to a 2 finger very light airy and active white head resting atop a slightly hazy copper colored beer. Head retention was only 1min 5sec quickly dissipating into a thin foam coating and ring with OK lacing.

Smell/Aroma: Smell is very sweet with candied oranges, clove, and coriander very prominent along with a nice bready aroma. A bit of of a yeasty sour scent is also detectable. 4/5

Flavor/Taste: Tastes of sweet candied oranges along with a black pepper bite on the front end. Midpoint is dominated by a bready clove flavor that turns to a toasty maltiness. A bit of coriander, oranges, and malt dominate the back end and finish.

MouthFeel/Drinkability: Smooth and slick with a slightly creamy medium bodied feel. Very tasty and drinkable.

Overall/Comments: This is a very good beer put out by the collaboration of two unique organizations. A very tasty and drinkable beer that I would recommend trying. Classified as a Saison/Farmhouse Ale @ 7.5% ABV. Consumed on 8/27/2013.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2013 09:11:17 | More by thegodfather1076
Photo of breakingbland


3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from an unmarked, corked bottle into a snifter.

Appearance: Poured with a half-finger, slightly off-white head. The beer itself is a deep brownish golden that was slightly cloudy.

Aroma: Crisp aroma with slight funk, but overall, not much aroma.

Taste: Sour/tart. Slight funk and spice, with some of the spice probably due to the peppercorns. Bready up front, with a mild lingering sourness.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation, with an appropriate body for this style (fairly light).

Overall: This beer seems to be a good, typical example of this style. (This style is one of my favorites.) Though the flavor profile is not too complex, it is an interesting and refreshing beer. The lack of a more assertive aroma is somewhat disappointing but not a show-stopper. I'll look forward to having this one again as a "special occasion" beer (a bit pricey for an everyday beer).

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2013 11:48:43 | More by breakingbland
Photo of brewtus


3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz caged bottle. Poured into teku. Pours clear light orange with a single finger white bubbly head. Smell is a little bit of funk, some straw, some spice, some refreshing citrus. Taste starts with some sweet red velvet cake flavor, some dry wheat, some spicesome ever slight citrus from the mandarin, the peppercorn is really only present during the after taste. Overall this was really good but wasn't as funky as I prefer for a saison, also not enough peppercorn, I'd prefer some burn. Worth picking up a bottle but not as spicy and refreshing as you'd imagine from a fruity spicy saison.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2013 01:27:24 | More by brewtus
Photo of mattkoon

South Carolina

3.96/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

i was craving a saison earlier....i couldnt resist this when i saw it. the smell is sweet with a slight earthiness to it. the taste has sweet citrus notes with a creaminess to it. also the sasion earthy flavor comes along. also i do get a little spicy i am assuming from the peppercorns. over all if i was craving a typical sasion i wouldnt reach for this- but this is a great beer in its own way. its pretty complex, and great.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2013 21:01:02 | More by mattkoon
Photo of BeernDrum


3.96/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very unique in my mind. Smells peppery and citrusy. Don't smell the mandarins so much. Nice amber/orange color. The taste, very unique. It is smooth lots going on. You can taste the mandarins and the pepper. It also leaves a little of a peppery aftertaste. This may seem odd but I find it rather interesting. A very tasty full bodied beer with many different flavors. Maybe not a true Saison but quite delicious. One of the best packaging presentations in beer I've seen in a while.

Fathead head hunter still rules to me.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2013 00:38:35 | More by BeernDrum
Photo of bluejacket74


3.96/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12.7 ounce caged and corked bottle. Served in a tulip, the beer pours an amber/orange color with an inch white head. Head retention and lacing are both good. The brew smells like peppercorns, bready malt, oranges, peaches, sweet spices, and some wheat/bready malt. I think the taste is just like the aroma. However, I think the peppery spice and wheat flavors are the strongest. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and creamy, and is also well carbonated. I think it's a solid overall brew. $12.99 a 4-pack.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2013 00:14:52 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of LiquidAmber


3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours a medium orange amber with a one finger ivory head with great retention and nice lacing. Aroma of spicy orange, Belgian and saison yeast, light bready malt; peppery. Flavor is light stone and orange family fruit, Belgian yeast and light spicing, with coriander, pepper and clove developing along with a drier character, finishing semi-dry with peppery spicing. Nice creamy medium body. A pleasant take on the saison style, starting closer to a Belgian dubbel, but finishing closer to the dryier saison style. The orange flavor spicing is deftly done and not overwhelming. I enjoyed this and found it closer to Belgian abbey styles than others in the Ovila series.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2013 03:45:03 | More by LiquidAmber
Photo of StonedTrippin


3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

the newest I think from the ovila series, I really like this one. it pours a surprisingly clear shade of orange, not unfiltered and raw like the style usually is, but its got a nice light copper glow and a lasting white head about two inches high. the nose is peppery yeast for sure, not positive if its from the peppercorns too or not, but the mandarin oranges are obvious, strong, sweet, and bright. in terms of flavor, there is a lot of semisweet malt base to this, and the yeast isn't quite as up front as I like saisons to be. in its place though is a lovely fruity twist from the oranges that give this beer a nice summer feel and a whole lot of life. slight spice in the finish, but again, I wouldn't know its peppercorns if the label didn't say so, I would have attributed it to the yeast. lovely carbonation and a drinkable lighter than medium body. overall what I like most here is the use of oranges, it contributes more than the usual orange peel bitterness. an excellent drinkable saison for summer, and brilliantly priced at just $3.29 a pop.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2013 19:13:51 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of yamar68


3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy burnt orange body with hues of tobacco brown and amber. A creamy half finger of off-white head retains well, leaving trace amounts of lace behind.

The nose definitely screams farmhouse... dry yeast, wet hay, apple skins, subtly sweet pale fruits... the peppercorn addition was well executed I think, offering just a bit of spice.

The fresh saison notes are joined with a mellow caramel malt character and leafy tobacco. Honestly, I wish the oranges were more apparent on the palate. Nevertheless, it's a tasty beer. Easy to drink, but not quite as thirst-quenching as you might expect for the style.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2013 22:48:53 | More by yamar68
Photo of brewskifan55


3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served at the Tops of the Hops Festival, Jackson, MS (several times)

A: Opaque amber with a one finger white head that stayed a while. Curtainy lacing.

S: Honey and oranges pop up with Belgian yeast in the background.

T: Light, sweet, syrupy, frothy. Picking up lemon, caramel, oranges, coriander with peppercorn on the finish. Floral esthers rule.

M: Light to medium with frothy carbonation. Loved the peppercorn finish.

O: I'd tried the regular Ovila Saison a year before and wasnt impressed. Adding the oranges and pepercorn made it pop. This was one of the standouts at the fest. A great summer drink.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2013 18:20:54 | More by brewskifan55
Photo of mikem0487


3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375mL bottle poured into Wicked Weed tulip glass.

A-Burnt amber body. Slightly hazy. Minimal head and lacing left on the glass.

S-Caramelized sugar, slight burnt bread crust, esters and definitely pick up on the mandarin orange. Overall pleasant and the burnt smell is very faint but there.

T-Bread crust, fruity esters, some peppercorn in the end. The yeast is definitely the main component here. The abbey yeast gives off plum and peach notes with nice phenolic spicy components. Complex saison...

M-Thin bodied. Almost the viscosity of H20. Dry finish. Effervescent for sure.

O-A good saison thats very complex in taste and smell. Overly complex for my liking. Its a great beer to have one or maybe two but after that you are looking for something more simple and straightforward.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2013 02:14:06 | More by mikem0487
Photo of DrinkSlurm


3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured rom bottle into tulip. Huge 3 finger head over a burnt orange/copper color. Bready peppery and a hint of citrus aroma. Dried fruit with peppery Belgian yeast/banana notes. Very faint mandarin/orange flavor but it is noticeable, followed by some bready malts, but nice. Really smooth...but heavy. Nice brew overall...not quite the "style" of saison, but a really good brew. Id get again for sure.

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2013 03:10:04 | More by DrinkSlurm
Photo of BarryMFBurton


3.91/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Sometimes you’re just not in the mood to buy 750mL of beer you’ve never tried; such is the case with Sierra Nevada’s Ovila series. Thankfully, I found a smaller, more affordable bottle at the local bottle shop. Cheers!

A: A luminescent, orange-amber body pours out from the bottle, alive with fizz. The head, stark white and thin, rises for a moment before condensing to a creamy retention. Small strands of lacing are scattered around the glass’s interior.

S: The balance in this nose is quite pleasant: Belgian yeast notes of black pepper and leathery funk coated in a sweet mandarin orange, creamy vanilla, and fruity taffy scent. It comes together in a single character, nearly, though with a slight edge toward the soft fruit-and-cream tone.

T: Upon first sip the mouth is coated with the taste of canned oranges – that “light syrup” that’s always advertised on the label covers the tongue in marmalade sweetness. There’s a short-lived Belgian bitterness that comes soon after, an herbal hop and yeast combo of green tea, lemon pulp, coriander, just a hint of freshly-ground pepper (it’s definitely not as spicy as I expected). Finishes with a fantastic bready malt quality: biscuit dough and a touch of grain husk.

M: Undeniably rich with mild carbonation, this one has a texture I can only describe as velvety. Filling, but just barely; it’s still very drinkable.

O: Sierra Nevada has created what seems to be a model saison, but its mild balance keeps me from falling in love with it. A brewer shouldn’t have to sacrifice balance for boldness to craft something I’d love, but the fact that nothing stands out here besides “drinkable” makes this a beer that’s just flirting with greatness.

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2013 00:33:00 | More by BarryMFBurton
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Ovila Abbey Saison - Mandarin Oranges & Peppercorns from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 364 ratings.