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Saison Du BUFF - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Saison Du BUFFSaison Du BUFF

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

1,167 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,167
Reviews: 511
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 14.51%
Wants: 49
Gots: 50 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  7.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed in collaboration w/ Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Stone Brewing Company, and Victory Brewing Company, who each brewed a version at their own breweries.

Brewed with Parsley, Sage, Estate Rosemary & Thyme. Checkout the video for more:  http://vimeo.com/11419846 

(Beer added by: Todd on 05-05-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,167 | Reviews: 511 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bohemiandonut
5/5  rDev +31.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Very happy to find this at Par Liquor of all places.

Appearance is good yeah yeah whatever looks nice velvety white head champagne body.
Heaven on the nose, seriously amazing. Spice is not annoying or overwhelming, rather a subtle complement to wafts of barnyard funk and lemon flower.
At first I was disappointed in the smell of BUFF, but after the first taste I could not be more pleased. Peppery, grassy, otherworldly. Is that leather I'm tasting? GOD I HOPE SO.
This drink is as refreshing as a dry dusty walk through San Diego's most seasoned chaparral. You know that feeling on a walk when an herbal scent jumps out at you? A fruiting sage perhaps but probably some gaseous blend of unknown native herbs? Well this Saison has that feeling "in spades." I don't even know what "in spades" means but who am I to never use the phrase.

Simply an A+ on all counts. The taste rolls on for ages and this scent will haunt me until... tomorrow when I get more. This is not your grandfather's Saison. As far as improving on Dupont I have no comment, but this is an incredible concoction that I could not ask more from. Good work, boys.

Photo of hustlesworth
3.43/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

now must be the time when i make the simon and garfunkel reference.

A- lightly hazy golden lemony yellow with an absolutely stunning white head. i mean magnificent. and the lace as well. it just sticks everywhere in spots and swirls after the foam takes its sweet time settling down.

S- sprucey rosemary is up front right along with that astringent rubbery saison hop aroma. even some pungent fresh green walnut husk sage is in there but sadly no thyme which is my favorite herb of all thyme.. i wanna say that i can detect parsley's freshness but i doubt it. sage and rosemary make up the nose. some yeast funky stuff, earthy and melon, mildly floral, and i guess it would be silly to say this beer smells herbal. hops smell warm and almost meaty. *edit: some thyme comes out as the brew warms but it's more like dried as opposed to fresh, which i hope was used.

T- interesting mix of rosemary and sage with savory thyme flavor way in the back. these are all common herbs round these parts and i grow all four and am very familiar with each and i wonder, with resinous rosemary and pungent funky sage, the sublime earthy minty and fragrant qualities of thyme exist as merely a vapor when i exhale even as mild mannered parsley is detected in the finish. i need more thyme! i've got half a mind to go out to the garden right now and pick a sprig and drop it in the beer. BUT that would be no better than adding a splash of OJ to a witbier. sharply bitter from start to finish with tuned down malt sweetness and yeasty flavors and a dash of band aid. herbs and hops play very nicely together until they all drop off long into the finish leaving some biscuity malt behind.

MF- moderately carbonated with tight persistent bubbles, the body is light and juicy enough to be a real refresher except for the almost seven freakin percent alcohol! the farmers who drank this to quench their thirst on a hot day must have had crooked plow lines and daily siestas. band-aidy and rubbery as all good saisons are to me and leaves the cheeks with the same feel.

D- saison to me is a strange style with all its odd characteristics and i think i would like it much more if the hops weren't so acrid and astringent. the herbal additions are cool but also novelty and i would probably give a no thanks if another one were offered to me. better to give it to someone who hasn't yet had a chance to try this rare, however ridiculous, offering.

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.43/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a dark golden color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma consists of primarily sage with a sweet malt base with candy-like feature which surprisingly works well together. Taste is also a very unique mix between a sweet malt base with candy and soap notes and a distinctive sage finish with other spices also coming through. Body is quite light for style but seems perfect in this case as it makes this a very refreshing drink. A lot better then I had anticipated and something I would seek again for sure.

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

A: Poured a beautiful light straw in color that was slightly hazy. The pour produced four fingers of fine white head that was long lasting and left thick lacing on the walls of my glass. All-in-all, it was a beautiful sight to behold.

S: Floral hops and citrus were the predominant aromas I pick up from this ale.

T: Tart lemon and piny hops followed by some nice malt sweetness bathed my palate leading me to think that this was perhaps the finest farmhouse ale I have ever quaffed.

M: The overall impressing was of a light thin bodied ale that was refreshing and crisp. There was a pleasant "liveliness" to each sip that left me wanting more.

D: OMG, I could drink this every day and night for the rest of my life. A truly wonderful brew. My hats off to the three amigos that crafted ;this fine concoction.

Photo of Bizz88
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a clear golden amber with an over the top fluffy white head, carbonation galore. Lots of sticky lacing. Aromas of grassy hops, herbs and malt. On the palette is where this Saison shines, with as plethora of spices, pine, cloves, coriander, sage, lemon zest, and pepper predominate. Medium bodied with tons of carbonation. A true trifecta, well done! Two thumbs up.

Photo of Brez07
3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a SA Perfect Pint glass. This was the version brewed at Stone

A: Even with a gentle pour, I immediately got a huge foamy head. After giving it a few minutes to settle down, I continued my pour. A translucent gold color with a crazy amount of carbonation. Leaves some lacing

S: A myriad of spices, but I think the one that stands out the most is rosemary. Overall reminds me a little of cardamom. Some hop finds its way through as well

T: Interesting flavors to say the least. Taste like drinking a flower. Big floral and spice presence. A little peppery. Enjoyed this at first, but got to be a little much about half way through

M: Medium bodied. Dry finish which I can only attest to the amount of spices in this beer. Good carbonation

D: Didn't really know what to expect with this, but it turned out alright. Probably could have used a little less spice though as I found it a little hard to finish just one bottle. Glad to try but not sure I'd drink again

Photo of Yoonisaykul
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Asked the server ''What's that bottle there?'' thinking it was probably some Molson Clear or something. Pleasantly surprised. First time experiencing anything Victory.

A- Well the bottle talks condescendingly about fizzy yellow beer and this actually kind of looks like fizzy yellow beer. A bit more yellow than golden with a thin white head that does last. Later pour offered a 2 inch head.

S- The mix of spices smell like mint to me. The barmaid and my girlfriend keep telling me to smell how good it smells. I agree but think it's a pretty standard saison smell. Definitely good but nothing too special apart from the mint.

T- Wow, ok, this is where it really happens. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, Thyme, it's all here. Awesome really. This tastes new, different, and I love this feeling. As advertised. A classic saison with just the right amount of spices. It's possible to not like this because the spices are quite present, but I find it's just right.

M- Full mouthfeel. Crisp, smooth, airy. Not amazing but I think it's pretty close to perfect.

D- Super. Of course the different herbs may make drinking more than a couple a little tiring (the sage after-taste really stands out), but it's a great drink. Satisfying, refreshing, interesting, tasty.

Really really like this. Beautiful but discrete bottle with a beautiful beer inside. Really happy I wasn't disappointed. Makes me want to try and brew something similar. Would buy this again and would love to try to try more beers with these type of herbs added. Thanks and kudos to all 3 breweries.

Photo of rudzud
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Hazy almost clear straw color with a fluffy 2 finger head that take forever to fade away resulting in heavy lacing down the glass.

S - Picking up on some herbal notes but really only getting thyme. Getting some citrus in the background. Really interesting

T - Nothing particular herbally jumps out at me but I know I'm drinking a liquid pantry? Refreshing hoppyness finishing with that that nice bready yeast taste. Very light funk.

M - Great carbonation that fits this beer really well.

D - Really nice, though it still feels like a gimicky saison. Would I drink it again? Sure. This beer has alot going for it, definately unique and worth checking out.

Photo of kirkpjr
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes - 7/15/10.

Split a bottle and poured into a tulip.

A: Hazy, honey golden color. One finger of white head.

S: Minty herbal smell - rosemary and scents of a fresh cut lawn. Sweet smelling - with a little lemon rind. Interesting for sure.

T: Tastes like a fresh herb garden. Almost exactly like it smells. Fresh mint, lemon, and rosemary. Floral and earthy. Too sweet to really be considered tart. Quite a brewing concept here.

M: Crisp and clean. Light body and medium carbonation. Refreshing and light.

D: A little to minty and grassy to drink much of. Happily split this bottle - could probably drink a whole one but not much more. Interesting beer and I wouldn't expect less with Dogfish involved.

Photo of Florida9
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Hazy pastel yellow with an orange tint. Big fluffy white head reduces to a rocky surface coating. Visible carbonation. Good lacing.

S: Herbaceous: grass, parsley, and thyme.

T & M: Dry malt with a spicy carbonation over the tongue. Lemon. Parsley. Thyme. Finishes quick. Rosemary comes through more as the beer warms, but not in an overpowering fashion. Lighter bodied with higher carbonation levels.

D: An interesting beer. The relatively odd flavors advertised on the bottle show through, but remain subtle, allowing this to still be an enjoyable beer.

Photo of farrago
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Finger plus of frothy white, mixture of all bubble sizes, loose enough to dissipate quickly, little, if any, lacing. Hazy light gold to darker yellow in color, although not the clearest liquid lots of bubbles floating upwards within. Orange blossom and cinnamon catch first in the nose but it's just a second before the noted herbs take over, white grapefruit too, yeasty but not soft nor leesy, witch-hazel, nothing here overly malty, leafiness predominates, extremely long presence with a full, pungent lift. Medium-bodied, nicely balance with same amount of fullness from start to finish. The herbs once more dominate and there is a clear, strong note of basil as well. Nothing crazy about the carbonation level but it does add to the total cleanliness factor. The tangerine to pink and white grapefruit lend a sweet and sour juiciness. Slight yeast to baker's dough element. Much more savory ending and aftertaste, good deal of retronasal activity. Hard to imagine an oddball one-off succeeding much better than this.

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

on-tap, Bad Apple in Chicago. I think i have a bottle of this somewhere but this was my first tasting...

cellphone notes

appearance: served in a large chalice - straw-golden body, foamy beige head

smell: love the fresh herbs - i get thyme more than anything but rosemary and sage are definitely noted. There is also some nice fresh citrus and grassy yeast

taste: i liked this one a lot - rosemary, thyme and sage are amongst my favorite herbs. I didnt pick up much parsley, but it can be a rather neutral herb anyway. White pepper, belgian yeast, honey, lemon peel and other citrus round out this bold saison.

mouthfeel: fresh, lively

drinkability: good

Photo of Schmaltzy
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a light straw/golden color with 2 fingers head that left slight lacing.

S- Wow, tons of herbal scents, Basil, Parsley, with slight earthy hops, finished with nice bready belgian yeast, typical with Saison's.

T- This is basically a liquid form of spiced herbs, including the hops, nice and refreshing, finished with the bready belgian yeast.

M- Light body with tons of aromatics and the carbonation is perfect for cleansing the pallate.

D- Very easy to drink one bottle, however by the end of my glass I remember feeling as if I had just ate a salad of herbs and didn't feel like having anymore... Maybe just me but I felt that this beer was just over the top...

Photo of NCSUdo
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle

A: Darker yellow than expected under a big white head. Some good lace and retention.

S: Big herbal character, rosemary (obviously) and then (my guesses) lavender, maybe some fennel, lemon, and probably a whole lot more. Pretty good aroma.

T: Herbal character is more subdued in the taste. Rosemary is still there, but the saison character is much more pronounced. A little bit of a citrus hop, which could very well be some spice, along with some yeasty and slight funky hints. Very good. Mild bitter finish, but mostly dry.

M/D: Light to medium bodied, carbonation slightly prickly. Very drinkable for me, wasting away in a hot house with no AC, very refreshing. This wouldn't make my saison short list, but it's certainly a good beer.

Photo of dpcoz
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass from a 12 oz bottle - Stone's version

A - Gold/Amber complexion, clear, appx 2 fingers of white foam, decent carbonation rising to the top

S - Honey, orange, bread, malts. Has sort of an Oktoberfest feel to it. Of the four spices advertised (Parsley, sage, rosemary & thyme), the parsley and rosemary stand out as dominant spices. Overall a pleasant aroma

T - Herbs dominate and kinda distract you from the beer itself, but I can pick up the orange and bready taste behind the parsley sage and rosemary.

M - strong carbonation, muted hops, a touch sweet entering and a touch harsh on the finish. Orange aftertaste lingers. Finish has a bit of a tanginess to it that may be due to the herbs crossing paths

D - I plan to try all three just for comparison's sake, but I wouldn't keep this in stock due to the nature of the herbs.

Photo of charmcityboh
4.13/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Brewed at Stone version.
Poured into Dogfish Head Signature Glass.
Lots of head, but not a thick one. Large bubbles form and die away rather quickly.
Odor of (what else?) parsley sage rosemary and thyme. Actually, my limited spice knowledge smells basil more than anything else. Almost like a spiced Iced tea. Spices overpower any traditional saison odors.
Appearance is a perfect orange/yellow, perfect for the style.
Taste is surprising after the smell. More of the traditional saison flavors emerge from the heavy seasoning than I expected. My favorite part of a saison, the ever lovely "horse blanket" was not there in the aroma, but is in the forefront of the flavor. Spices come in quick and sharp, then fade quickly to a dry, complex finish. I'm digging this more than I though I would. Cant see having more than one though, it's just to complex.
This is an interesting saison to put it mildly, but from these brewers, anything too traditional would be disappointing. Well done, will try to pick up at least one from each brewery.

Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours slightly hazy straw-orange. Small white head in mini-snifter, ring with some lace.

Incredibly aromatic, herbal parsley especially. Really interesting with the fresh-cut character of this aroma combining with the yeast character. Good carbonation, nice finish. So leafy throughout, just straight off the cutting board- I would like to see what some of my chef friends think of this.

Really interesting, but for me, more of a novelty, it's well executed for what it is, but not really practical for me to drink on any regular basis- I wouldn't even want a whole bottle necessarily. Another solid collab though.

Photo of brentk56
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy honey color with a modest head that leaves some spots of lace

Smell: Fruity and herbal, with floral lemon/lime and rosemary, thyme and sage dominant

Taste: The floral lemon/lime elements kick off the flavor fest with the peppery yeast and herbal (rosemary, thyme and sage) aspect developing by mid-palate; after the swallow, the herbal tone grows medicinally bitter

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Drinkability: A very interesting brew, but the aftertaste is too medicinal and leaves it lacking compared to the other versions of this beer

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz picked up for me at Belmont Station by the great Boise Beer Buddies... Inflatablechair and Buckeyeboy.. Poured into my small stemmed glass...

Pours with a massive 3 finger head... quick and the bubbles rise.. incredible retention.. surprisingly only okay lacing... the brew is hazed lite golden with tons more bubbles streaming from the bottom of the glass.

Nose shows pretty traditional saison phenols.. bit spicy and some fruity esters.. but the main player for me is "turkey herbs".. the herbs I buy every year because I can never keep mine alive and healthy long enough... sage... and parsley.. very interesting on the nose.

Flavor.... ehhhh... not digging it as much... the herby qualities sorta mesh and then separate into a weird medicinal complex... finish is an odd soapy quality that reminds me of the wife's lavender lotion (or at least what I envision it tasting like).... really very floral with warmth and the herbs break down into a mess of "grassy" flavors... sorta is reminiscent of Mama Mia's Pizza beer with some Belgian character and no oregano.

Body may be a tad high.. carbonation is about right... okay... I will certainly drink it again and never turn it down... and it seems okay for a beer while doing some late night lawn watering, but overall for style, I can't give it too high of a review.. I appreciate the kitchen sink mentality, but it just doesn't hold up.. much better when cold.

I think I will use a bottle of this when brining the Thanksgiving turkey.. no kidding. Thanks Jeremy and Sam.. You guys are keeping my collection moving forward with these bottles.


Photo of bogus564
4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a newly-acquired chalice.

Golden orange color, with a very small head that does not last.

Smells mainly of black pepper and orange - the combination plays fairly well. Hard to get anything else, as these smells tend to dominate.

Tastes of blood orange, pine, black pepper and clove, also kind of toasty. I'm guessing perhaps Centennial hops were used; I could easily be wrong on that, but it's an educated guess.

Mouthfeel is alright - it's light-bodied, with decent carbonation and a piny aftertaste.

Drinkabilty is fair - I'm thinking it would go nicely with a meaty fish, or perhaps a nicely grilled chicken.

Photo of jslot38
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Finally stumbled across a bottle of this. 12 oz to tulip.

Appearance: A massive amount of head rises to the top of this brew with a steady pour. Very enticing. Body is a copper yellow with just a touch of haze. Strong amount of bubbles rising to the top.

Smell: Great saison smell. Spice, clove, fruit, bread and grain.

Taste: This is pretty different. Good though. Traditional saison taste upfront, followed by an aftertaste of a bouquet of herbs. The use of thyme, rosemary, and sage is obvious. The bottle says they chose the style because of the creativity it affords them, and this is pretty creative.

Mouthfeel: Lighter on the carbonation that I was expecting, and fades a little fast.

Drinkability: While an interesting and different brew, 12oz is almost too much. This beer has some great characteristics but is almost too experimental.

I appreciate what the collaboration did here in trying to push the envelope. Its an interesting and good beer, but a bit too herbal which overwhelms what is probably a good saison under there.

Photo of WanderingFool
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saison Du BUFF pours a slightly hazy, straw yellow with a small fluffy white head on top. Some lines and spots of lace stick to the glass as the head recedes. A steady stream of tiny bubbles flows up from the bottom of the glass.

The aroma is very spicy. Strong notes of rosemary, thyme and sage. Reminds me of a chicken dinner.

Each sip of this light bodied beer is soft on the palate, dry, with a light effervescent fizz. The flavor is much like the aroma and full of spices. Rosemary and sage are the strongest flavors. A little bit of sweetness and bubblegum in the middle. It finishes with some clove and a touch of bready yeast. Once gone the sage flavor lingers on the palate.

This was an interesting beer that's packed with aroma and flavor. It reminds me of a gruit more than a saison.

Photo of PhiloPsych
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Saison is not a style I'm very familiar with. This beer is exceptionally herbal in aroma and taste. The rosemary, sage, and parsley it was brewed with help explain that; but the hops are the outstanding herb and very nice. The mouthfeel is light, but resinous, which I appreciate. The color is light, hazy yellow--it's a visually attractive beer. Along with the herbal, piney hopes, the defining character, for me, is what I'd call "Belgian funk." This might not have been the obvious choice of style for Stone and Dogfish to brew together, but, by my lights, it is a creative and well-crafted beer. Well done!

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Excuse me, I (Nick) am a little sick. No congestion, but my sense might be a bit off. (This also happens to be review #666.)

Poured into a 7oz. snifter.

Appearance: Poured out crystal clear and goldenrod in color, generating two full fingers of soft, white fluff. Initial head stuck around for a bit, but eventually settled as a soapy crown. Nice lacing all the way down. Moderate carbonation and light sedimentation.

Smell: Clove, banana, original bubblegum, and potpourri come to mind immediately. Sweet grains and hay are also there. Nice combo, though I'd like to get a bit more funk out of this one; it's a little too tame for me.

Taste: Sweet and floral, with clove and bubblegum contributing quite a bit to the overall flavor. Lemon rind, floral esters, honeysuckle, and flowery hops commingle in the finish and lead into a flavorful, long-lasting aftertaste. While I'm not finding as many sour and funky flavors as I'd normally like, I'm really enjoying this saison. This is one of Stone's better collaborations.

Mouthfeel: Intense, rolling carbonation massages the palate - very nice! Light body and moderate ABV keep things from getting out of hand. Aftertaste is long-lasting and flavorful. Saison du Buff is a complex, yet fairly easy, drinking beer.

Drinkability: This is the third time I've had this beer, and while it's not great or the style, it is very enjoyable/drinkable. I'll probably pick up another bottle if/when I see it. Recommended.

Photo of earthboundagain
3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: This beer is a very clear golden hue. Nice white head and great lacing.

S: Unique is a nice description, smells like a fresh jar of poultry seasoning.

T: A mix of hops and fresh herbs assault my taste buds, this beer is not for the faint of heart. Hops get stronger towards the end, but there in no noticeable bitterness.

M: This brew is highly carbed, and has a nice smedium body (yes I said smedium).

D: This beer is extreme without being overly harsh, I not saying it tastes bad, but I couldn't drink more then one at a time.

Notes: this beer is a nice change of pace, I have had it a few times, and it makes a wonderful marinade for chicken.

Saison Du BUFF from Stone Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 1,167 ratings.