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Saison Du BUFF - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Saison Du BUFFSaison Du BUFF

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BA SCORE
86
very good

1,170 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,170
Reviews: 512
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 14.21%
Wants: 49
Gots: 51 | 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:
Beer added by: Todd on 05-05-2010

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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,170 | Reviews: 512 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tronester
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy golden with a medium white head. Smells of freshly squeezed lemon, and phenolic yeast. Taste is light bread like malt up front, with a very spicy herbal lemon middle and finish. Quite a bit of bitterness here the clings to your toungue. Mouthfeel is good, slightly high carbonation. Very good beer, other than the fact that the intense spicyness limits drikability a bit. I would get this again though.

Photo of TheGordianKnot
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a very nice thick fluffy white foam head on top of a straw colored beer laced with tons of carbonation bubbles... White fluffy clouds of lacing hang sporadically.

S- I get a very delicate floral aroma. With a rouse the phenols come out followed by a nice citrus, almost grapefruit nose. Honey sweetness also comes through- likely from the malt backbone.

T/M- At first taste you get the sweet malt presence balanced with a light floral hop flavor and a bit of citrus (less than the nose alludes). The pepper and spicy phenols come out to finish the tongue. The lingering flavor however, goes back to a fruity and flowery hop aftertaste- perhaps a bit of earthiness and pine mixed in to boot. The mouth is a beautiful light body with quite a bit of carbonation. This beer would be great for me on a summer day due to the flavor and mouth.

D- I really really like this beer, but I'm not sure how many I could have in a session. The flavor is outstanding, but not for more than 12 ounces would take me.

Overall, one of the better I have had to date. I love the fruity addition not commonly as prominent in others- mostly due to the herbs brewed with this, I assume. Also, the phenols present are a bit different than you find in Hennepin or DuPont... Would love to buy again, albeit a tad pricey

Photo of Monteiro
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Possibly over chilled. Poured into a fatty flute glass.

A: A fairly light golden hue. A bit cloudy, with dispersed and dissipating carbonation. A even little saucer of head clings well to the edge of the glass.

S: Definite citrus. There's some lamb roasting on the other side of the kitchen, so its a little overpowered.

T: If there was a touch of lavender, this would taste just like a provençal seasoning mix. Rosemary is quite powerful, but the brew still tastes pretty balanced. Any malt is barely noticeable.

M: Interesting carbonation, on the lighter side but still pleasant. Zesty like someone took a microplane to it.

D: It's a pretty hot day here in Portland, and this was crazy satisfying. Had two bottles while I roasted some lamb doused in olive oil and sea salt.

Photo of beerthulhu
4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Against natural lighting the color appeared a bright lemon, with a slight peppery, misty haze. The capping was foamy and rocky in structure with a very well lasting retention rate leaving small speckled dashes for a lacing. Visible effervesce was composed of a dozen or so steady jet streams of micro-bubble, closely spaced and rapidly moving. Overall a very good visual appeal.

S: Bright oranges and tangerines exist on the nose along with some tropical fruitiness of mangos. Light herbal notes and pine are detected in small complimenting quantities.

T: Sweet grains and dry wheat provide a nice backing for some tart oranges that mingle nicely together on the opening along with hints of coriander. The middle of the palate finds a nice tartness of dry tangerines, herbal notes and spicy citric elements. Dry, tart and crisp in character this finishes up with some spicy hop notes along with dry lemon peels and a slight peppery touch. A nice drinking saison that comes close or matches that of Fantomes examples, but then again would you expect anything less when these three giants come together?

M: Crisp mouthful with a bubbly nature gives this some texture. A dry lemony hop finish with a little warmth ensures on the swallow.

D: Very enjoyable, tart, crisp and vanishes off the tongue quickly with very good results. A surefire summer time quencher that comes highly recommended per style. Case worthy.

Photo of bs870621345
4.72/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thought I'd try this beer with all the hype surrounding it, and I must say its pretty good.

Pours a golden color with a good amount of head, leaves almost no lacing.

Smells like herbs and a slight sourness tinge. I would swear that I smell basil and parsley, but basil is not listed.

Tastes like herbs and a sour taste. The herbs are a lot more up front than anything else, which is nice. Very unlike any saison i've had.

Mouthfeel is prickly and light. Very good for a saison.

Drinkability is great, i'd drink a lot of these. Fantastic beer.

Photo of Stone4Life
4.52/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured this from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter class, only because i particularly enjoy aromas.

A: Beautiful golden honey color with about a 3 quarters inch of beautiful bright white head. Just an outstanding beer to look at.

S: Cant say a single bad thing about the smell of this beer. The fresh herbs(sage,parsley,rosemary,thyme) hit you in the face immediately at first smell. After a quick swirl and a second analysis the light but beautiful and fruitful hop smells came to the nose as well

T: At first I thought the smell was a front and was expecting much less from the taste of the beer. But being as stone is, the taste came through with lots of character and the fresh herbs are expressed beautifully

D: For a 6.8% beer this is extremely drinkable. Goes down as easy as a good pilsner or a kolsch. Would have def grabbed a second if i had another one available:(

Overall everything i expected from a collaboration of brewers of this caliber. Highly recommend it to everyone. the smell alone is worth buying this beer.

Photo of tdawgydog
4.24/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a couple of bottles of this on my last visit to Half Time.

A - A little more clear than your typical Saison. Not in a bad way just not as unfiltered as I would have expected.

S - Possibly the greatest aspect of this beer is the smell. Strong scent of Rosemary is sweet to the nose and keeps you coming back for more.

T - The Stone influence in clear in the taste. You can taste the herbs that were put into this. Overall it is extremely enjoyable. One of the better beers that I have had this summer.

D - Well, just about perfect for a hot summer day like today. I've finished my supply and it's left me wanting for more.

M - Well done, maybe a little more head but that could be contributed to the style.

I'll be looking for more of this on my next trip to the beer store.

Photo of scottfrie
4.25/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into sniffer. Version brewed at Stone.

A: Pours a citrus-golden with a huge bright white head that slowly reduced into a thick pillowy layer that left spots of sticky lace down the glass.
S: Wow! Really unique. I can really smell the parsley, sage, and rosemary. This beer smells really green, like fresh cut nature. I also pick up a notes of what smells like fresh mint leaves. There is a subtle sweetness to the scent as well, with notes of tangerine and fruity hops.
T: Very complex spicy and herbal flavor. Notes of mint, grass, sage, grapefruit, tangerine, bubblegum, coriander, black pepper, earth and a hint of thyme. Hits the palate sweet and finishes with a light funk and bitterness.
M: Carbonation bubbles up when it hits the mouth but stays even through the swallow. Medium body with a dry finish. Tea like qualities. Bitter/sour aftertaste is strange but light.
D: I wasn't expecting much looking at the ingredients of this beer, but I'm surprised how well they actually worked! Very unique and interesting flavor. Like chewing mint bubblegum you dropped in a muddy herb garden. Glad I tried it.

Photo of silver0rlead
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful hazy golden color with a frothy eggshell head that retains impressively and leaves nice lacing. The aroma has some fresh hay and bread dough upfront, along with white pepper, floral hops, spices (thyme, rosemary, parsley), a little honey and mineral. The flavor is similar to the aroma with biscuit and hay initially, along with some white pepper, spicy hops, rosemary, sage, cardamom, a little honey, some fruity esters and a little alcohol. The mouthfeel is light but not watery, and drinkability is good but a little limited by the prevalence of spices. An interesting saison here, definitely heavier on the spices that most examples I've tried.

Photo of Rhynes2
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was first drawn to this brew when I noticed who had collaborated on it. The herbs really are the main feature of this beer. They take over the taste of this brew and deliver something so unique to your palette. Nice head for this one and it sticks around for quite a while. Aroma is spicy and matches the flavor of this beer perfectly. As my first saison I have to admit I'm very impressed and I'll be looking for a few of these to stock my fridge when i can.

Photo of samie85
3.79/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-This one is a pale golden color with a one finger head.

S-Rosemary and thyme and in a big way. Some light malt and faint hint of Belgian yeast.

T-Rosemary and thyme but not as in your face as the nose with a bitter, crisp, dry Belgian yeast finish.

M-Light bodied and effervescent with medium carbonation.

D-This is one heck of an interesting beer. It's hands down the best saison I've had to date. This isn't a terribly easy to drink beer though as I fee like after one or two of these you'd get some hardcore palate fatigue from the herbs.

Photo of bassmantin
4.02/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I am really excited about this one. I always love trying collaboration brews, and the collaborators are among the best. Really cool bottle, too.

Ok... Pours are a glowing yellow/orange with nice thick foamy head that sneaks up on you and takes a while to settle down.

There a very unique herb in the smell. If I hadn't read the bottle, I probably would not have been able to pick it out, but now that I know what it is, it is obviously rosemary. In addition, there are citrus notes, and I can tell the malts are going to be delicious.

The taste is very unique. Lots of rosemary up front. Then the rosemary fuses with a sort of bitterness/alcohol taste that lingers for quite some time. The bitterness is actually a little too harsh for me, and it seems to overpower the malts. Or perhaps that is some characteristic of the rosemary.

Either way, I am not getting quite the malt flavor or the levity I expect in a saison. A little disappointing. I will drink the beer and appreciate the novelty but probably not pick this one up again. If only it had lived up to the smell!

Photo of DIM
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This was a slightly cloudy golden color. It poured with a thick, sticky, and stiffly creamy white head.

s: Interesting! I have to admit that I thought the parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme was just a silly gimmick. Okay, so it is a bit gimmicky, but it smells pretty damn good. This is a pretty hoppy saison and that works well with the spices. I wouldn't say that I could pick out any specific spice though. Overall this earthy and musty with a fresh, prickly element. Absolutely unique.

t: Tastes as good as it smells. There are three components at work here and they blend together almost seamlessly. This is spicy, bitter, and earthy all at once. The combination tastes grassy and vaguely garlicy. There might be a rosemary tickle at the very end. Unique and difficult to describe.

m: Full bodied for a saison with gentle carbonation.

d: Its been a long time since a beer caught me completely off guard. What an outstanding collaboration!

Photo of glennl
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

poured into a duvel glass from a 12 oz bottle with Stone Brewing cap.

nice golden color with thick white head that lasted a long time. strong herbal aroma with hints of cracked peppercorn and lemon.

the aromas carry over into the taste, with rosemary predominating, and *maybe* overwhelming. typical belgian yeast characteristics with champagne-like healthy carbonation.

this was a tough beer for me to buy because though I love saisons and all three of the collaborating brewers, I don't have much love for rosemary. So the fact that this was an enjoyable beer for me is a testament to the brewer's artistry.

i had the first 6oz or so paired with an arugula salad with shrimp and lemony mustard dressing, the second 6 oz by itself. i think this is a beer that lends itself better to food pairing due to the strong herbal component. overall very good, but it's just "out there" enough that I wouldn't see myself having more than 1 in a sitting.

in any case, big points for creativity!

Photo of chrisgn
4.8/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

The first thing that hits you is the amazing aroma of the hops when you pour it. This beer has a wonderful complex hoppiness and light mouthfeel. There are also some sweet fruit flavors on the backend. All round great beer. I don't think this is a beer you would be drinking a lot of, but it is certainly enjoyable with or with out food.

Photo of gr8scott88
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Golden yellow, large head

S - This is a beer with a whole lot of herb. Got a lot of the thyme and rosemary with hints of basil and others.

T - The word that first comes to mind is "interesting". Definitely a unique taste, very fresh, and strangely appealing. This brew easily acts as a thirst quencher. The herbs come out strong with a few hints of citrus.

M - Medium body and carbonation. Definitely pleasant all around. Texture complimented by the head.

D - Definitely a great experience. Not something to be over consumed, but as a drink alone its a great overall taste and texture, and refreshing on top of that.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip. 6.8% ABV, Age at Cellar temp 55°F or below, no date.

A - The hiss from the crack of the cap keeps me from being alarmed at the presence of a quickly rising head. Four full fingers of dense white foam disappoints by lowering quickly to a lumpy pile. Some clumpy, patchy lace covers the glass above the very pale yellow beer.

S - Lemon grass and spice bombards the nose with strength. Black pepper, coriander, grains of paradise, and more seem to be packed inside this beer. Saying it's spicy just doesn't seem to cut it. A pinch of yeast and pale malts falls deeply to the background.

T - A burst of citrusy lemon grass-like hops catches me off guard a bit before the taste turns right back to a very spice-oriented flavor. Black pepper, coriander, and floral notes overwhelm. It's an interesting flavor that reminds me of something the Bruery would put out.

M - Light-bodied and incredibly crisp with a sharp carbonation bite to the finish, Buff is spicy, dry, and semi-bitter to the finish. Still fairly smooth going down though.

D - I like spice in my beer. I also love saison beers. This beer is a combination of two things that I love which only proves that, sometimes too much of a good thing actually can be too much. I DO think it's good but I also think the spiciness is a bit harsh and could use a little less bitterness on the finish as well.

Photo of alleykatking
4.18/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle.

A- Poured a semi-hazy golden yellow color. Two finger light tan head that just showed amazing retention. Chunky lacing on the dies of the glass as I drank it down. Fantastic looking saison!

S- Bready yeast aroma from the front. Nice floral hops in the middle to backing with a light earthy tone to them. A nice peach like fruit aroma toward the middle as well. Rosemary is a big aroma that I get from this as a spice. I know there are some other ones in here but I can not make them out as individuals.

T- A nice kick to the mouth right off the bat. Nice peach flavor with some lemon zest to it breaks through a grassy taste. Spices come through the with rosemary coming on top. Very earthy tasting on the backend with some light bittery hops with a floral blast on the ending.

M- Medium light mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Rosemary left on the palate and dominates most of the aftertaste with a light yeasty taste. Flavors were muddled a little too much at times but everything was clean flavorwise. Light drying on the palate from the alcohol.

D- This was a interesting beer to say the least. the aroma and appearance was better than the overall flavor. The rosemary in this beer was a little too much for me moreso after the beer itself warms up. Would love to try this again.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a chalice)
A- This beer pours a crystal clear golden yellow with a swirling sea of microbubbles and a creamy light tan head that last
S- The perfumy yeast aroma of saisons has a green hop snap with notes of mint and thyme and a very faint herbal parsley quality. There is a rubber balloon note to the finish of the hops. T- The yeasty saison flavor has a slight sweetness with a faint bread quality and a big pungent hop kick in the finish with grapefruit zest qualities that grow as the beer opens up.
M-There is a medium mouthfeel with a tight light fizz and no alcohol heat noticed.
D- The nice saison with strong American hops has an interesting herbal twist with mint and rosemary that is not over the top but.... interesting.

Photo of alcstradamus
2.75/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a nice golden yellow with a finger and a half of head that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is very strongly spiced and herbal...wowee. Heavy notes of lemon peel and banana as well. The alcohol is noticeable at 6.8%.

The flavor is herbal and alcoholic. Not as much depth as I would have guessed from the nose. A bit musty too. Not really tasty at all actually.

The body is light and carbonation is spot on. Overall this is just unfortunately not a good beer.

Photo of jmerloni
5/5  rDev +31.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Golden yellow-amber appearance with a yeasty haze. Sparkles in the glass. Head is big, sticks around, and laces nicely. If the fountain of youth exists, this is it.

S - WOAH herbs and spices just as marketed. Thyme majorly. Rosemary. Basil. Yeast. Smells so fresh. I just tried to picture the field that all of these ingredients came from but nothing I could imagine came close enough. This is an exceptionally smelling beer.

T - Oh man. As good as most any beer I've ever had. SO remarkably fresh. Pure and pristine and crisp tasting. Herbs and spices leave a tingle on the tongue. Perhaps the crispest beverage that has ever entered my mouth. Exceptional.

M - The head and the yeast give each sip a fantastic texture that compliments the way the spices make the tongue tingle. Dry and spicy finish. Well carbonated and light to meidum bodied.

D - A mind-blowing beer. That's all I have to say.

Photo of Mosstrooper
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into 400ml New Belgium branded tulip glass.

Appearance: Golden-orange color with a very large, slowly dissipating off-white head that leaves lots of thick lace around the edges of the glass.

Smell: Slight biscuity malt aromas with a wealth of hop smells. Strong floral and grassy nose with a touch of earthiness. There's also a nice peach smell that comes through. Interesting spices. This is possibly the best smelling beer I have had.

Taste: Peachy flavor up front, backed up by a nice grassy bitterness. The finish reveals more peaches and a satisfying earthiness. There is a noticeable hop aftertaste in the back of the throat, but it isn't very strong. The spices are also apparent throughout the drink. Doesn't taste quite as good as it smells, but still damn good.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a lot of carbonation, though it isn't too sharp on the tongue. The finish starts off a bit watery, but dries out.

Drinkability: This is a superb beer and probably the best Saison I have had. I hesitated a little to buy this beer at first, but I am very glad I ended up purchasing it. If you haven't already tried this beer, you definitely should- strongly recommended!

Photo of msubulldog25
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another from the collaborative series Stone has been doing of late: this one is a confederation with brewers from Victory and Dogfish Head. 12 oz. bottle, poured to a 25cl 'La Chouffe' tulip glass.

'BUFF' = Brewers United for Freedom of Flavor.
Ale brewed with Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme

A: Cast into the glass with vigor, the result is mildly-hazed golden crowned by 3-fingers of cloud-like whiteness. The head drops gradually and loosely, opening with fissures like lava rock. Tiny trickling streams of carbonation are everywhere, faithfully replenishing the topping as it fades. Small dabs of foam for lace.

S: A light citrus, maybe even lemongrass, before a muddled herbalness takes control. Black pepper twitches in the nose, cut grass and just enough sweetness - a doughy yeast roll.

T: Piney hops expose themselves upfront in a beer that reminds me more of a 'Belgian IPA' than a 'Saison' from the first sip. Yeast offers a chalk-dry bittering, but the varied herbs remind me of a more-pronounced version of the "Mamma Mia! Pizza Beer" I just recently tasted. The sage and thyme really burst forth as this warms, with peppered bitterness to follow. Curious/tasty.

M: Crisp and reasonably 'light', plenty of lively carbonation and spices to keep the tongue busy. A lasting coating, oils that last for quite a while past the last sip.

D: I don't know that this wins me over from the traditional farmhouse saisons, but I certainly applaud the effort to push the boundaries and try something new. This is my second bottle and I'm bound to get a couple more and (since they're bottle-conditioned) keep at least one for a while to see what develops. A 'try' recommendation is an easy call...

Photo of scottyb88
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into Duvel glass

A- pours a cloudy dark yellow with a fluffy two finger white head with ok lacing

S-funky; sweet candied citrus peel with a hint of sage, rosemary, and thyme, but I couldn't pick it out if I didn't know it was brewed with those herbs; nice yeasty aromas

T-i think there is more sage in the taste than anything with a hint of woody rosemary; nice funky yeasty flavors with a light citrus and pepper

M-great mouthfeel; its the stone version, what do you expect; very full as always with just the right amount of carbonation for my liking; the aftertaste is decent with a mixture of alcohol esters, orange peel, and some herb

D-it's a unique offering but not as crazy or intense as the description says; the flavorings blend well and nothing is too overpowering; a bit gimmicky? perhaps, but it's worth a try.

Photo of snaotheus
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Pours slightly cloudy straw-yellow with about a finger of white head, which fades fast leaving clumps floating in a film on top of the beer with a thick, clingy ring around the glass. Slow, fine visible carbonation. Smell is fruity -- bananas, a little citrus, some cloves, more banana.

Taste has only a hint of the banana from the smell, more cloves, a fair amount of parsley. Bitterness of lemon peel. Sour bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is light, airy, and good. Solid, drinkable beer.

Saison Du BUFF from Stone Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 1,170 ratings.