Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

398 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 398
Hads: 660
Avg: 3.88
pDev: 17.27%
Wants: 47
Gots: 41 | 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:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 02-12-2006

15 IBU

2008 - 7.0%
2009 - 8.8%
2010 - 9.3%
2013 - 7.0%
2014 - 7.2% brewed with Pineapple Sage
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) Alström Bros
Reviews: 398 | Hads: 660
Photo of ThreeDimesDown
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big pillowy white head upon pour, wait a few minutes and an extremely nice lacing occurs. The brew is a nice golden, slightly hazy color with a head that just lingers to the end!

The usual funky mustiness of a saison is present in the nose, along with a heavy Belgium yeast, coriander and light fruit (oranges and pears...).

Light fruit hits the palette first, followed by a bready maltiness and ending with a stronger alcohol crispness. Light hints of coriander and other spices work throughout.

A sharp, light-medium mouthfeel with very active carbonation.

Overall, a decent farmhouse ale. Not all the flavors marry together as smooth as I would like, mainly because of the high alcohol finish. A little bit of time in a cellar might help mellow and bring it all together.

 779 characters

Photo of cjgator3
3.61/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle

A- Poured into a snifter. Pours a golden orange color with a HUGE off-white head that reminds me of a freshly poured Duvel. Definitely an impressive pour.

S- The aroma is pale malt with a lot of peppery spices, citrus and yeast.

T- The taste starts out with some pale malt, and also contains pears, spices, earthy hops, yeast and some warmth from the alcohol.

M- The mouthfeel is somewhere in the middle of light and medium bodied with a high amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, I enjoyed this brew. The alcohol stands out a little bit but I like the complexity of the different flavors. Definitely worth a try. Recommended!

 640 characters

Photo of berley31
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured with an absolutely huge, frothy white head that persisted... and persisted. The head continues to rise past the rim of the glass, growing quite rocky. Great lacing. Body is a beautiful, golden orange, and hazy.

S: Very spicey, peppery aroma. Good amount of fruity citrus in the background.

T: Very fruity and spicey, as the aroma would indicate. A touch of funky sourness is present, and welcome. Finishes quite dry. A fine representation of the style.

M: Light body, slightly tart, with very high carbonation.

D: A great saison; I don't have too much experience with this style, but this makes me want to try more. An excellent beer.

 648 characters

Photo of sisuspeed
3.46/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled in 2009

Poured into a red wine glass. Smuttynose's Farmhouse produces a huge, thick, foamy white head that sits upon an a hazy orange-apricot body. Tilting the glass leaves gentle lacing behind.

Bready, biscuity malt on the nose with Belgian spice, mainly coriander. A little earthy and musty. Somewhat sweet with a touch of light ripe fruit.

The taste contains sweet pears, earthiness, Belgian yeast and some bitterness. Alcohol comes through a bit. Oranges, orange peel and somewhat spicy. Malts are sweet and linger on the bready side. Overall, I find the flavor to be somewhat muddled and hard to pull apart.

Mouthfeel is decently thick and quite foamy with tiny, sharp carbonation. It would be nice to see the foaminess turned down a bit, but otherwise the mouthfeel is pretty good.

Drinkability is about average for me. A bit on the sweet side and a little too foamy. Alcohol is somewhat noticeable on the taste. Probably wouldn't want more than a pint of this.

Overall, this is a decent saison. Most of the general characteristics of the style are there, but this one is a bit too sweet and muddled for my taste. The body is a bit on the foamy side and I feel like the alcohol could be hidden from the taste a little better. If you see a bottle, give it a try, but there are much better examples out there.

 1,327 characters

Photo of abuliarose
3.99/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a bowl goblet, revealing ultra thick and airy cream head over hazy frosted gold body. Very prettyful. Some lacing. Smells sweet and slightly nutty, with the appropriate farmhouse funk almost like the Hennepin. Slight citrus, slight metallic tinge, hint of spice.

Tastes solid saison. Some metallic notes, lots of fresh corn and vegetable "funk" character. Slight bitterness, gentle citrus, and solid malt finish. More hint of spice. Mouthfeel is light with prickly carbonation. Medium-light body. Very drinkable, especially just chilled.

Overall I like this offering. Especially on a warm day, especially for the price.

 633 characters

Photo of hawks10
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz. bottle poured into my Old Rasputin pint glass...received in a trade from NCBeerFan, thanks!

Even with a careful pour, you'll be waiting a bit to drink this beer...a huge head erupts, filling around 80% of the glass with fluffy white head which leaves huge chunks of lace. Honey orange color with a bit of haze, hugely carbonated as tons of bubbles are stilling racing up the glass...

Sweet bready scent, citrus flavors with some banana...a bit of an earthy aroma as well, bit of a spicy yeast smell lingers around a bit too...

Taste has a decent amount of spice to it and a surprising high alcohol presence. Some grassy/herbal spice shows through with a bit of a hop bittering in the end...the combination of spice and a strong alcohol presence means this one doesn't really work for me...

A bit too carbonated for my tastes but doesn't ruin the beer by any means. Somewhat thin with a big tingle from the alcohol presence...

 935 characters

Photo of AleWatcher
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this as an extra in a trade with Husslerc

Looks very nice. Dark apricot color with a thick frothy white head. Sticky looking head leaves chunks of thick lace on my Duvel tulip.

Smell is lemony/citrus and grassy notes. Other fruits hit too... Maybe pear, apple?, apricot? Some spicy yeast notes as well. Smells clean and fresh.

This follows nose. Sweet notes up front blend into some acidic fruity notes and leads into spicy yeast and a slight alcohol bite. Ends with a little hoppy bitterness.

Pretty highly carbonated. It works well for this slightly less than medium bodied brew!

This isn't one I would really drink very often. I do like several other saisons/farmhouse ales, but this one just doesn't do it for me.

 729 characters

Photo of vrazionale
3.37/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22.4 oz. bottle at refrigerator temperature poured into a snifter. Bottle reads: "Bottle-conditioned in: 2008"

A - Pours a clear, bright copper body with a modest, delicately-laced head formation.

S - Lots of stone fruit, sweet citrus, and floral notes, well-complemented by a full yeasty background. Subtle notes of spices - namely white pepper and fresh nutmeg.

T - The fruity notes take hold up front, followed by a wash of honey-like sweetness. Not particularly crisp or tart, and the honey sweetness, while complex in its own right, doesn't feel right here. The progression feels clumsy and awkward. It needs more bitterness, I think.

M - For much the same reason that I didn't like the taste of this beer, I don't like the mouthfeel. The sweetness imparts a sticky feeling that doesn't jibe with the crisp, refreshing character I like in saisons.

D - Not an unpleasant brew to drink by any means, but I've had much, much better saisons. I understand that this beer was brewed almost two years ago, but I expect a well-made saison to hold up better than this. I'd pair this beer with a hearty mac and cheese dish or with sweeter cured meats.

 1,151 characters

Photo of emsroth
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 vintage

App: gold to slightly amber. Medium level of haze. HUGE frothy, foamy, chunky head that took forever to die down. A perfect looking beer.

Smell: Strong fruity aromas dominate: apples and cranberries. A dank, zesty, wet smell is also present. Faint wafts of alcohol and grainy malt occasionally slip through.

Taste: Strong and spicy. Starts with an alcoholic kick that fades into pear and mild apple. Next comes a spicy wet grass flavor which turns into the bitterness of the hops. Ends slightly fruity with a medium husky and herbal dryness.

Medium-full body with intense the top carbonation.
A saison that's more on the malty side, but a good one nonetheless.

 679 characters

Photo of ffejherb
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber into tulip on 2/2/10.

A - Poured a hazy amber/orange body with some tiny gritty nodules of yeast particles suspended throughout and a one-finger foamy bright white head that settled to a patchy veil and thin ring that flared up nicely with each swirl of the glass, leaving spotty lace around the rim.

S - Initial aroma is fruity and spicy with quite a bit of musty yeast. Bitter citrus notes suggesting grapefruit rind are also apparent, as well as a slight alcohol twang. A hint of pepper offers further spicy complexity, while a subtle sweetness is also present, suggesting fleshy, tree-dwelling fruits.

T - This is a Farmhouse Ale with a variety of spicy, yeasty tones indicating pepper, mildew, musty basement funk and the like, but also a prevalent citrus bitterness akin to grapefruit rind and lemon zest. A subtle floral character also presists. Finishes with a mild alcohol sting followed by a slight dusty, earthy twang.

M - Medium bodied with fairly lively carbonation resulting in a bristly mouthfeel. Finishes with a hint of earthy bitterness and subtle sour funk on the palate.

D - Pretty tasty stuff here from Smuttynose, this is a typical Farmhouse Ale that blends funk, earth, citrus, spices and hops. The alcohol is somewhat noticeable, but doesn't really hinder the drinkability.

 1,312 characters

Photo of woosterbill
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Prime 16 into a shaker pint.

A: Slightly hazy orange-gold body with just a whiff of fine bubbles on top - can't even call this a head. Disappointing.

S: Sweet fruity esters are predominant, with tons of pear and citrus, maybe some pomegranate. Enticing.

T: More intense and straightforwardly yeasty than the nose, but with all the same fruity sweetness up front. This sweetness gives way to some bready malt, floral hops, and dry, fruity alcohol on the finish. Very complex and completely enjoyable.

M: Light to medium body; carbonation starts out sharp and mellows through the course of a sip.

D: A little on the sweet side for me, but still a pleasure to drink.

Notes: Another solid offering from Smutty, this delivers an enjoyable array of estery goodness. Quite different from other Saisons I've had (DuPont, Foret, Hennepin, NG Imperial Saison) in that it's far sweeter, but in its own way this is every bit as good as those (although I'd rather have a Hennepin on tap, and the NG beer was just awesome).


 1,034 characters

Photo of grayburn
2.01/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

A beautiful beer, huge rocky head. Retention is great as well. Nice light golden color.
The smell comes off as a little funky, a little cidery with a bit of a skimmed note lingering...uh oh...
uh oh is right Batman. Metalically soured taste with a cloying, lingering, I just ate the cookie tin and not the cookie kind of taste. Bad, drainpour. I'll take smuttynose's other fine offerings, not this one.

 402 characters

Photo of callmescraps
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Intrigued. Not available out west, so I decided to give it a bid.

Appearance- Very light copper color. Slightly beige head, several inches. Big and rocky, very impressive. It looks very nice.

Smell- Apple cider. Tons of it. Sour apples, or sitting in a barn. A slight funk, plenty of yeast. A little spicy. Smells more like a cider than a beer.

Taste- Follows the smell. Nice light funk. Plenty of sour apple. Very dry. Hint of pear. Some lemon and citrus. Also, a breadiness. Almost like a big hefe. It's very pleasant, but not amazing.

Mouthfeel- Very good carbonation. Not thick, but full of flavor.

Drinkability- Goes down smooth, although pretty astringent.

This is a very nice beer, but nothing special. Not sorry I picked it up, but I'll pass next time I'm back east.

 781 characters

Photo of wesbrownyeah
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Smuttynose farmhouse?... Big Beer Series?

A- Nice fluffy head with slightly rough pour that leaves beautiful thick foamy lacing that grabs the rims of the glass like it owns it. Orange hazy fluid with unfiltered effects showing its true colors.

S- Smells like a combo of nasties and harsh alcohol esters. Nice and full bodied scents of wheat and massive spice.

T-M- Taste is very alcohol tainted with mild notes of wheat and yeasty bite. Excellent farmhouse style. Mouthfeel is a little alcoholic with thick bite of wheaty tongue biting yeast.

D- Very drinkable if you find it but otherwise drink and consume on contact.

 637 characters

Photo of Metalmonk
4.34/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A welcome "zisssSSS!" from the pried-off cap and we're underway...humongous fluffy head emerges with hardly any effort, a rocky, firm thing that looks like the most comfortable pillow in the universe. Liquid is a dirty yellow/gold with bubbles wildly darting through it and to the top. Damn, this head is amazing...like the moon's surface, if the moon were made of meringue (rather than cheese, like it really is).

Aroma is fruity and earthy in equal measure. Just a light trace of barnyard funk, dirtying things up (in a good way), and lighter mineral traces in back. Little bit of lemon sneaks in as well.

While the aroma is a bit subdued, the flavor brings it all to the edge of the stage and just about topples right off. First sips seem to say "I am a big wild mutha of a Saison!!" Lots of citrus notes (mostly lemon), even more bready/biscuity malt sweetness, and then spice and mineral characteristics shove in and take the spotlight. Crisp and dry, although a spice/malt aftertaste remains long after the swallow, somewhat "cinnamon roll," especially with the yeast making its complexities known. Further sips offer all kinds of interesting impressions (flowery earthiness here, I'm-sucking-on-stones-plucked-from-a-forest-stream there).

This is an incredibly refreshing beer...I would love to have this in the middle of a killer humid summer day or something...but it works incredibly well on this rainy, chilly night too. Another excellent offering in Smuttynose's Big Beer Series. I'll be on the lookout for more bottles, starting NOW.

 1,549 characters

Photo of srandycarter
4.11/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Glowing honey, lots of near white head, tons of clumpy lace.

S - Funky farm. Pleasant malt here.

T -Pretty. More malty than sour/funk, the latter is there in nice proportion.

M - Medium body, great coating fair carb, good balance.

D - Very easy to drink for sure!

 271 characters

Photo of kingcrowing
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a snifter.

Pours a light wheaty gold with a big fluffy white head. Nose is funky and sweet.

Taste is super funky and a bit sour but so nice and creamy. Very smooth with some awesome carbonation makes for a great mouthfeel. One of the best beers I've had from smutty in a while!

 303 characters

Photo of ShogoKawada
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this a bunch, but it's been a while since I bought one. Here we go, 22oz into standard pint (My snifter broke today! NOOO!!!)

A- A faint, subdued straw yellow with a voluminous head that goes on for days. Bubbles are like a sno-cone or ice shavings.... really interesting. Like lemon sorbet ontop of my beer. Very inviting, high points awarded. Incredible lacing.

S- Floral, mildly funky, sweet, faint caramelized sugar... Hmm. I stick my nose into the beer and the grassy, wet-blanket funk is there, although reserved all things considered. Very nice, if subdued.

T- This beer is a winner. Sweet, a faint amount of tartness, funky funk is here in full effect. A citric acidity comes to bring up the rear. I can't say I can name all the flavors working in this one... but I like 'em!

M- Crisp, multi-faceted, a faint amount of the ABV is noted although does not detract. Very nice.

D- One of my favorites... prob. the first Farmhouse I ever had and after sampling a bunch, I still find qualities in this one that will keep me coming back again and again. Cheers!

 1,071 characters

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice golden body with a slightly patchy smaller beige head.

S - Smells like citrus and sweet malty alcohol.

T - Taste is clean with citrus, spices, warm alcohol and some sweet maltiness.

M - Very smooth and crisp. Moderately carbonated with a very nice sweet clean finish.

D - The alcohol is masked well in this brew and is very smooth. The physical drinkability of this one is great.

 392 characters

Photo of donkeyrunner
4.13/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gold with streams of bubbles. Obnoxiously large bubbly white head. Foamy Pangea mound retention leaves clinging lace drifts.

Aroma is yeast, spice, apricot: alluring and farmy enough for me.

Tastes crisp yet smooth with a sugared apricots and cantaloupe balanced by dry funk. Sweet takes over as the funk fades. Apropriately dry.

Smuttynose can do anything.

 362 characters

Photo of prattmeister14
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. Big Beer Bottle served in a Unibroue tulip glass

A. I poured aggressively, forgetting the review I read that the head is generous and fluffy, thus I had to wait to finish pouring. However when I was done the head was indistinguishable from Belgian brews I've had before - a testament to the Belgian yeast. A cloudy maize color, what I expected. Too tasty looking to not drink.

S. Aromatic, belgian-y. Fruit and light sugar smell. Alcohol underlying

T. Hey now-- this is a big beer! There is a sweet taste up front and a bitter, hoppy taste in the back. It kind of lures you in with the sweet. After a few sips the sugary characteristic disappears somewhat, but is still present.

M. Nice mouthfeel, not too heavy and not too light. The ABV doesn't overpower the mouthfeel and the carbonation doesn't take away from the taste like some Belgians do.

D. I could sip this all night, but this wouldn't be a beer that my college comrades could "pound" (Why pound a great beer like this?) A beer that can be enjoyed all night.

Overall: This is my first Saison/Farmhouse ale and I'm not disappointed. Smutty rarely does so. If my review is a bit off kilter, attribute it to the fact that I have no prior experience in the Farmhouse category. To put it blunty: I'd get this beer again, and again.

 1,301 characters

Photo of Thur123
3.51/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ok so, this brew pours a golden color with three fingers of think white head and little carbonation. The smell is notably creamy, with the spices taking a backseat while still making their presence known. A slight funk pervades the smell and I don't detect any boozy kind of smell.

Glug glug glug

Ok up front is smooth, sweet and creamy before rushing into the spice flavor, a slight bitter underlies the whole profile and the end and aftertaste contain more of the funk then before. I have to commend this brew for hiding the booze flavor while still retaining some of the heat. Overall this isn't bad but it seems to be lacking in complexity and also any kind sour apple taste I usually expect with this style.

 715 characters

3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was stunned when I poured this big bottle brew into a wine glass and bore witness to the holy vortex of carbonation that ensued. I've never seen anything like it--too pristene to sip at.

This was a very good release by Smuttynose--proves their versatility. Without being too extravagant, this brew contained a nice mellow Belgian malt with a warm, spicy finish.

One of the beautiful things about the Saison genre is that you don't know exactly what you're getting with each brewery's rendition.

Certainly worth a try...but not the same as a true Belgian.

 559 characters

Photo of biegaman
4.54/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bright, early morning sunshine with bursting, beaming rays that jump out the glass even despite the misty haze that blankets the beer. Its head was initially quite voluptuous but it has lightened considerably. White is painted everywhere but nowhere is it thicker than along the outskirts. The glass is plastered in a shotgun spray of lace.

Yes. This is the smell of a Saison. It is flawless. Fresh-cracked peppercorns, budding orchards of pear and apple fruit, a countryside of flowers, a squirt of citrusy vinegar and the contents of grandma's herbs garden combine for a bouquet that is every bit floral, fruity, perfumy, earthy and zesty as any one could ask for. I don't even need to drink it...

But I will. Because it tastes amazing too. All that I loved about the aroma is repeated in flavour form: fields of wild flowers, (dandelions and rose water), grain husks and wheat flour, slightly over-ripened orchard fruits (pear, apple, apricot), spices (white pepper, coriander), herbs (thyme, savory), citrus zest shavings and a teaspoon of wild honey.

Delicious. But it's not worth much without the right fitting mouthfeel. Saisons demand a lot of carbonation to keep all those zestful flavours alive on the tongue - I'd say this is adequately carbonated enough to give the palate a good old scrub. The alcohol interferes none, thankfully, and its slight dryness is flattered by a mild tartness. Not bad.

No, not bad at all. American brewers often have trouble replicating the beers that their Belgian counterparts seem just inherently gifted at brewing. Smuttynose has succeeded where many others have failed - crafting a convincingly Belgian-esque ale that can stand toe-to-toe with the real things. This has to now be one of my favourite Saisons.

I found this beer to be tremendous. It's the middle of October - possibly my favourite month and time of the year - but just one look and smell and taste of this beer made me yearn again for summer. When a beer can provoke feelings and memories then you know it was made well and that it evinces all that makes that particular style unique.

 2,102 characters

Photo of gfreed
2.05/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Off to a great start: even an easy pour resulted in a generous head that took a very long time to fade. Had to wait several minutes before there was enough space to add more beer to the glass. The beer itself is a sort of matte peach color; topped by the giant white head it was nearly as attractive as a good Hefeweizen. A decent fistful of grapefruit in the aroma was tempered by malt that smelled a bit like cocoa. But that's where the good part ends. One taste of this deflated every anticipation of a good glass of beer. A one-word summation: booze. The overpowering taste of alcohol buried every single flavor. There's no subtlety, no gentle warmth from the alcohol; only ham-handed booze. Boozeboozebooze! This would best be enjoyed from a paper bag.

Smuttynose ought to abandon this Big Beer crap and stick with more moderate brews, which is what they do best. Definitely avoid.

 888 characters

Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 398 ratings.