1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

625 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 625
Reviews: 395
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 13.21%
Wants: 42
Gots: 26 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
15 IBU

2008 - 7.0%
2009 - 8.8%
2010 - 9.3%
2013 - 7.0%
2014 - 7.2% brewed with Pineapple Sage

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 02-12-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 625 | Reviews: 395 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Is there a bad saison? Smuttynose produces a competent saison that simulates, with bolder taste, your conventional farmhouse saison, funky horseblanket et al.I aged this and so the yeast is diminished and smooth orange and corriander flavour is in every sip over a complex lunch. Creamy easy mouthful.

Sammy, Jun 17, 2007
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +3.6%

djrn2, Nov 24, 2011
Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

zestar, May 31, 2014
Photo of Thorpe429
2.28/5  rDev -40.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Thanks to Joppa for this bottle. Served in a tulip.

Pours a clear golden color, starting with a two-finger white head and falling quickly to a thin cap without leaving too much lacing behind.

The nose starts out with some faint phenolics and just a touch of fruit in the background. Light notes of alcohol. The flavor really beefs up the alcohol presence atop the peppery phenolics and spice, plus very mild fruitiness.

Body is medium with average carbonation and quite a bit of booze. Yikes.

Not a fan of this one. The saison character goes in the wrong direction and this beer is unnecessarily big. Why have a saison at 9%? It doesn't work here, that's for sure.

Thorpe429, Apr 19, 2012
Photo of metter98
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is clear yellow in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin white head that quickly dissipated leaving a thin film of bubbles covering the surface.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of fruits, spices and yeast in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has a bit of sweetness in the initial taste; the finish has a light amount of bitterness and spicy flavors. The fruity flavors stand out slightly more in the taste compared to the smell.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. There is some dryness in the finish.
O: Considering its strength, this beer is remarkably easy to drink because the alcohol is well hidden from the taste.

Note: 2010 vintage

metter98, Apr 13, 2011
Photo of brentk56
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy honey color with a frothy head that sticks well and leaves swathes of lace

Smell: Some modest horseblanket, but the aroma is dominated by a sweet herbal aspect; lots of clove, orange peel and overripe pineapple

Taste: This is way to sweet at the outset, and the cloying tones offset a lot of the otherwise great flavor profile in the beer; it is peppery, with loads of clove and pineapple phenols that develop, after the swallow

Mouthfeel: Medium body, with moderate but prickly carbonation

Drinkability: What this beer could be if it were not so sweet would put Smuttynose right up there with some of the better American Belgian style brewers; I love a lot of the Smuttynose beers but this is one that is tough to drink

Thanks, ohmesohoppy, for the opportunity

brentk56, Aug 02, 2008
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Kruggerand gold with a faint yeasty haze following the first pour. The three finger crown is an especially attractive shade of rich ivory, has a firmly creamy texture and isn't shy about laying down lace. Plainly and simply, this is good looking beer.

According to the aroma, Farmhouse Ale is a fruity-herbal-spicy saison, as opposed to an earthy-funky one. In other words, this is a Brettanomyces-free zone. Can a saison yeast result in a beer that smells this authentic and this wonderful? In the right hands, why not? Warming opens things up even more and forces me to click on the next highest score.

Farmhouse Ale is yet another outstanding Big Beer Series offering from Smuttynose. Who knew they had a Belgian-style saison in 'em? They definitely did their homework... and it shows. This stuff should be released in 750 ml bottles with a cork and cage. That way, the packaging can be as impressive as the contents.

With respect to flavor, barley malt stays the hell out of the way, which is definitely for the best. I'm guessing that pale or pilsner malt is numero uno by a fairly wide margin. Thanks to Belgian candi sugar, there's still a good bit of residual sweetness to balance the bitterness and the hoppiness.

The flavor profile includes ripe pears and apples, a surprising amount of creamy banana, a twist of lemon and a generous sprinkling of ground clove (possibly even coriander). It just occured to me that this ale tastes like an Imperial hefeweizen. And a damn good one at that.

It doesn't matter if you like big American beer or Belgian beer, the mouthfeel is beautifully built. The beer feels medium-full on contact, then the well-buried bubbles take over and lighten it to a silky smooth creaminess that seems to linger forever.

When I put Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale on my wants list, I had no idea what incredible beer it is. Thanks to biegaman for sending me this bottle so I could find out. Trouble is, now I want more. Much, much more.

BuckeyeNation, Jul 14, 2009
Photo of BEERchitect
3.56/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

With keen detail to the world of Belgium, the brewers of Smuttynose brings the high spice, subtle fruit flavors and high effervescence to their Portsmouth, NH endeavors.

Its resulting "farmhouse" flavor" stems from its bubbly champagne and hazy wheaten body to drift about the early palate with soft powdered sugar sweetness, and equal parts lemon, apple and orange with white pepper, cumin and coriander balances.

And those fruity-spicy balances gain traction upon the middle as the sweetness fades, the acidity increases and its bubbly character goes from creamy to zesty. As much of its ale character is traded for reisling wine, a tarter, sharper and more acidic tone transpires- reminding the tastebuds of white grape, cider and exotic tea.

And while those wine tendencies take hold, a return of creamy wheat echoes in finish along with the grassy and stemmy bitterness from hops to reaffirm the elixir's beery roots. Yet as damp hay, straw and grass layer upon any trailing taste, a moderate warmth sets in once the sweet and fruity disguise lifts..

BEERchitect, Jun 26, 2014
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +3.6%

kjkinsey, Jan 08, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of JJPM74: Poured a deep orangey color ale with a big foamy head with good retention but minimal lacing. Aroma of fruity ester with some nice medium sweet Belgian malt. Taste is also dominated by some nice fruity ester probably coming from the yeast that was used with some nice medium sweet Belgian malt and a subtle dry hoppy ending. Body was quite full with a somewhat oily texture and some good carbonation. I thought this was a bit too sweet and somewhat cloying when compared to the staples of the style.

Phyl21ca, Nov 15, 2007
Photo of mikesgroove
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed this one in a trade a few months back and had been sitting on it in the fridge ever since waiting to be able to try it. Twenty two ounce bomber was served cold, right out of the fridge and poured into snifter and allowed to warm up. Consumed 08/21/2008.

The pour was nice with a very hazy, and very cloudy dark amber color coming forward, much darker then I thought it would be for the style. Nice head, maybe two inches with some really great retention and a wonderful bit of side glass lacing. Lots of carbonation was visible streaking up from the bottom of the glass.

The aroma was a little bit light for me to be honest. Some nice notes of yeast, grain, with lots of breadiness in the middle, not nearly the funky farmhouse ale I was expecting it to be. Lots of light fruit notes with hints of peppery spice dominating on the flavor. Quick hints of pear, peach, maybe some apple, all in that general family. Nice touches of figs and light bread. Light feel on this, a little slick to be honest, but still not bad at all. Good carbonation and a nice smooth sipper.

Overall not bad, I am not blown away like I usually am from their beers though. Still very nice approach to it though and a bit different then what I was expecting, which is never a bad thing. I would try this one again, maybe, but nothing really stood out as excellent to me.

mikesgroove, Aug 23, 2008
Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -22.3%

ygtbsm94, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 ounce bomber - $5.49 at Hop City in Atlanta, Georgia. Bottle-conditioned in: 2009. A nice "pssst!" upon opening, as if it had a deep, dark secret to tell. Go on, Farmhouse Ale, unburden yourself and spill those beans for me.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, orange-golden body with a large, meringue-like, off-white head despite a relatively gentle pour. Continuous streams of effervescence throughout.

Smell: It's a bold, busy aroma where everything is vying for your attention -- everything from malted barley and wheat, non-frosted cake, fresh-picked orchard fruits, Curaçao liqueur, and plenty of spices.

Taste: Tastes like a sweetish mixture of crisp pils and soft wheat malts smoothed over with a touch of candi sugar. Small hint of fresh pound cake in there as well. Initial fruit tastes of apples and tart pears, but soon an orange citrus character joins the fray and eventually overtakes the other fruit flavors. The yeast provides a particularly bold spiciness to the beer, giving an impression of finely-ground cloves and pepper. The hops provide an additional rustic spiciness and a fair amount of sweetness-countering bitterness. The finish provides a taste of cake soaked in spices and fruit liqueurs with some warming, soothing alcohol lingering into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Highly carbonated providing for a rather zippy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A bold, warming, bubbly affair, for sure, and, while good, I feel I'd sooner reach for a standard Saison Dupont. Still though, it is worth a try.

ChainGangGuy, Oct 03, 2009
Photo of oberon
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a slight hazed burnt orange-like color with a thinner but well retaind white head,alot of different things going on in the nose some lemony tartness as well as some yeasty phenolic notes but not overbearing with lingering hints of iron and herb.In my opinion the flavors are very Belgian-like in its yeasty tones and almost medicinal hop profile with lemon and overipe pineapple tones.I like it not alot of the barnyard funk you get in traditional Belgian saisons wich I dont care for so that was a plus for me,pretty refreshing and substantial at the same time.

oberon, Jun 20, 2006
Photo of JAHMUR
3/5  rDev -22.3%

JAHMUR, Jan 02, 2012
Photo of largadeer
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle received from Dyan, thanks man.

Appearance: Pours a bright golden-amber, clear but slightly hazy. An inch of white head forms, slowly settling into a thin sheet.

Smell: Spicy phenols, slightly herbal/medicinal, bread with apricot jam, and funk - nice footy funk. Granted, it's a mild funk, but it's very welcome. I do believe this is the first American-made saison I've ever had with actual funk. Pretty nice.

Taste & mouthfeel: Sweet cereal grain malt flavors open this one, with spice and fruit hitting the palate soon after. Pepper and clove lend a nice spicy kick to an otherwise smooth and sweet profile, and there's a touch of yeasty funk below the spice. The body is sufficiently light, though there's more residual sugars than I generally like in the style. This one finishes on the sweet side, quite uncharacteristic for the style, but I'm still enjoying it.

Notes: Very good. With slightly lower ABV and a drier finish it might even be great.

largadeer, Aug 15, 2008
Photo of emerge077
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A plume of smoke and gentle hiss christens the opening...

The hefty bomber pours out a cloudy orange tone into a chalice. Suspended sediment of yeast swirls around, dancing around in the moderate carbonation.

Aroma of funky Belgian yeast, true to style. Some resemblance to Orval in the funk factor. Estery fruit and mild phenolic alcohol in there too, still very pleasing.

At first the taste reminded me of a Tripel, due to a sweet bubblegum and fruity, estery alcohol presence. This was countered by a spicy, peppery finish that balanced the initial mild sweetness. After a few sips, the mild phenolic alcohol mellowed, and became well integrated. An earthy, bittersweet note emerged, accompanied by pear, orange peel, and berry in the middle. Throughout there was the funky Orval-esque yeast. Finish was definitely not as dry as most Belgian Saisons, and it was easy to finish the 22 oz. bottle.

A hearty drinker may be able to session 2 bombers, but honestly that would be more than enough.

This is a great example of a domestic Saison in the Belgian tradition.
Served around 50-55º.

emerge077, Dec 06, 2006
Photo of zeff80
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, fizzy, golden-orange color with a foamy, white, one-finger head. It left some thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of citrus and a little funk. It had tons of yeasty aromas.

T - It tasted of funky yeastiness, some orange and caramel malt. There was a touch of honey flavor.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a dry flavor. A medium bodied farmhouse ale.

D - This is a pretty darn good Belgian ale from an American brewery. It is very well-balanced and delicious.

zeff80, Jan 29, 2009
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Smuttynose's Farmhouse Ale pours a slightly hazy amber with an orange cast beneath a short head of creamy off-white froth. The head retention is fairly good, and it leaves some nice lace at the outset of the glass.

The nose is quite interesting with notes of toasty, wheaty malt and Belgian yeast (fruitiness and spice).

It's dextrinous medium body is fuller than might be expected, and it's pillowy smooth across the palate with a gently zesty carbonation.

In the flavor the yeast shows it's true character, revealing phenols and even more black pepper spiciness. The fruitiness is citrusy (orange, and pineapple?), and works well against the sweet malt. A very firm bitterness holds it together, and it finishes a bit sweet but not sticky as some alcohol is present and helps to thin it a bit.

An interesting and unique beer that's well worth it if you can find it!

NeroFiddled, Jul 08, 2006
Photo of Jason
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber with vintage year of 2006 on the label.

A- tawny golden color, good clarity with a decent but fading off white lace.

S- Orangey, earthy, hint of nutty yeast, toasted grains and spicy clove makes for a complex aroma.

T&M- Just as smooth as it is crisp, sturdy medium body. Hints of black pepper, clove, and an even medicinal phenol. The maltiness hits a high and shows some stamina against the spicy flavors. A kiss of hot fermentation funk is present, par for the style and not over done at all. Finishes a tad sweet with a mildly hot alcoholic end.

D- I love how Smuttynose embraces a style and adds their own flair to it. Amazing complexities don't take away from the drinkablilty, paired well with beer braised brats and herb roasted potatoes.

Jason, Jun 27, 2006
Photo of nickfl
3.13/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours with just under one finger of white foam on top of a somewhat hazy, copper colored body. The head collapses quickly and leaves little lace.

S - A spicy yeast aroma with notes of clove, coriander, and a hint of pineapple. Some Bready malt in the background with some light, musty European hops.

T - Spicy notes of yeast and wheat up front with some coriander and a big note of musty clove. Earthy hop flavors come out in the middle with some toasted malt. The beer finishes with lots of medicinal clove and musty hops as well moderate bitterness. Lingering clove flavors are accompanied by a sweet, but muddy toasted malt flavor.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - This is a very yeasty saison, but unfortunately the yeast character is mostly lacking in the more pleasing notes that the style is capable of in the best instances. There is a huge note of medicinal clove that really becomes overwhelming in the finish. There are some nice notes in the nose, but these fade quickly and don't manage to balance out the phenolics. In addition to the unfortunate yeast character there is an excessive residual sweetness that adds to the cloying nature of the flavor by leaving a lingering sweetness that seems to perpetuate the medicinal notes in the aftertaste. Honestly, I think half the problem here is that they shot for a big beer on this one. Going over 9 percent is really pushing the limits in a way that doesn't seem to work for this style, there is just too much lingering sweetness and the yeast seems to have been stressed in such a way that is put out all of its most unpleasant byproducts. I would like to find something nice to say about this beer, but I really can't seem to; not something I would recommend.

nickfl, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color with a large white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of yeast and banana with a little bit of hops.

T: The taste is bready and a little fruity with flavors of yeast, banana and touch of spice. It’s simple but effective and refreshing. The malt character is thin and the hops presence is mild. The after-taste is bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, clean and dry finish.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily as evident by the fact that I killed the bomber that I had in a very short time, not filling at all, good representation of style and a good kick, this is a very good light and refreshing beer that I good drink quite a bit of. It’s one of the best Saison style beers that I’ve had.

TheManiacalOne, Apr 29, 2007
Photo of Kegatron
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Kegatron, Jun 14, 2013
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear amber with a white head. Nose is dough. Perfume is there as well. Flavor is excellent. Citrus. Dough (minor). Little bit of funky. It's just smooth overall. Feel is slightly slick on liquid with a minor carbonation. This is nice. Most American brewers royally f--k this style. Another fine Smuttynose brew.

RblWthACoz, Oct 24, 2008
Photo of Slatetank
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I Tried this on tap a KClinger's Tavern in Hanover PA.
Served cool in a standard pint.
A - Hazy, medium amber w/ a half inch of tan head, some lace is apparent.

S - Slightly funky, belgian style yeast aroma w/ slightly sweet citrus nose.

M - Medium body w/ a tangy, mildly carbonated feel. There are gentle hints of spice w/ a nice malt presence and subtle hop spiciness.

T - A mild flavor of wheat w/ nice citrus flavor that doesn't go overboard. Some light pepper and herbal tea-like flavors in the mix. A pleasant dry toasted malt flavor and delicated hop accent w/ herbal qualities.

D - A mild farmhouse w/ little funkiness, very smooth, a quaffer. I could drink multiples of this w/ no problem. It seems a bit restrained for the style, yet still has very drinkable qualities.

Slatetank, Sep 17, 2007
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 625 ratings.