Jack D'or - Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project

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Jack D'orJack D'or

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,477 Ratings
THE BROS
96
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,477
Reviews: 612
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 11.6%
Wants: 145
Gots: 149 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
First release from Pretty Things. A "Saison Americain."

(Beer added by: Paquette on 12-01-2008)
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Ratings: 1,477 | Reviews: 612 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jjanega08
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A= pours a beautiful light copper color. Really looks great in color the head is also a nice suprise rising to three fingers in my glass and has great retention and lacing. The color is almost like apple juice. Awesome retention leaving a great rocky head. I wish I woulda used one of my duvel glasses to see how it would compare.

S= Like a really great saison. Nice yeasty estery notes coming from it. Green apple and pear. HOPS. There is a definite hop presence in it. On the bottle it says American saison so I'm assuming they hopped it up to keep with American style. Some good light malts come through as it smells like permenting beer in a closet a little.

T= Just like the smell... Great yeasty esters hit you up front and on the tip of your tongue they last with nice green apple and pear flavors just sitting there. Then the middle is full of nice hops that also last creating quite the complexity as the tip and middle of your tongue battle for the dominate flavor. Quietly like the Vietcong the bready finish falls down the back of your tongue and slowly falls down your throat. The breadyness is very very present when you exhale through your nose after a sip. Awesome saison flavors.

M= Crisp yet somewhat coating. Great lasting flavors all over you tongue. Nice small bubbles lead to a little creamyness.

D= Awesome beer. After drinking Baby Tree last night I wasn't expecting much from this one but this beer is the quintessential American saison. This is what I want a saison to taste like. Great flavors and smell. Awesome looking beer. Great feel. One of the best saison's I've ever had no doubt seek this beer out.

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.88/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle opened by PWoods.
Pours a hazy gold in color with a nice inch and a half of head on the pour.
Smell is fruity esters and some nice spice. Taste is more peppery and spice. There's a certain bitterness coming through in the flavor. Almost a lager like flavor and not enough fruity notes in the flavor.
Decent mouthfeel and easy drinking. Far from my favorite of the style.
Good offering, I'll seek more out from this brewery and give them a try.

Photo of pwoods
3.38/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz. Brown bottle poured into a chalice.

A: Pours an average amber with decent clarity. Moderate head with little retention or lacing.

S: Great spicy yeast with enty of fruity esters. Sweet Candi sugar.

T/M: Nice hop bitterness. Nice spicy yeast, a bit harsh. Odd fruity twang. Plenty of sweetness but not enough to balance the bitterness and spices. Body is medium or so.

D: Pretty harsh to drink. Low ABV, though.

Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got through a trade...Pours golden orange(into my Koningshoeven sniffer). Very nice size head and frothy. Slowly dissapates and leaves decent lacing. Smells very earthy. Lemon/citrus and musty. Very common Saison aroma and therefore pleasant.
Flavor is also spot on for a typical solid saison. Light and crisp with a lemon aftertaste. A little grapefruit. Slight hop and wheat notes. Very good beer!

Photo of DefenCorps
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

calise1122 was kind enough to give me a bottle of this simply because I hadn't had it before. Thanks, Brett! I've heard good things about this beer, as well as Dan's other beers. This is batch 7, bottled July 2009

The first pour is gorgeous, light orange in color with a dense off-white head that's 2-fingers thick. Clarity is excellent, and head retention is top-notch too. Some lacing is left along the side as I drink this.

This beer exemplifies everything I love about saisons. Rustic and complex, this beer is excellent. The nose is an excellent blend of hay, mild phenols, some spice with white pepper and some honey as well. Hop character is low, but I do get some citrus on the nose. Yeasty and mildly estery, this is one of the best domestic saisons I've had.

The palate opens with a delicate combination of spices (white pepper) and sweetness. While I usually dislike sweeter saisons, the mild sweetness works beautifully in this beer. Honey and mild caramel meld with the spice and estery character of the yeast. Citrus character is noticeable, lending a juiciness to the palate that works very well with everything else that's going on. Phenols appear towards the finish, one that's a combination of sweet and drying. Delicate floral and citrus flavors linger on the finish, with a touch of honey. The combination of the medium body and the high carbonation is enjoyable. While the flavors are excellent, I find the sweetness to be just a little distracting, keeping me from quaffing this beer like I'd with a Dupont. All told, an excellent beer.

Photo of berkey
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received as an extra in a trade recently but for the life of me I can't remember which generous New Englander I have to thank for this one. Batch Seven bottled July 09. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

After a steady pour this beer forms a medium fluffy off white head that fades relatively quickly leaving only spotty lacing. Body is a bright orange amber with a moderate haze.

Smell is very sweet and estery for the style. Bananas and dried apricots really caught me off guard. Behind that I'm getting a very faint phenolic character.

The nose didn't really prepare me well for the herbal medicinal flavors which is followed by some spice and a mild grassy hop character. I'll have to admit, between the unusually fruity aroma and the 'Saison Americain' on the label I was starting to expect something much different than a traditional Saison but this one has much more in common with it's Belgian cousins than most of its American brothers and sisters. You could serve this to any lover of Belgian beer and they'd immediately identify it as a Saison. Not sure if it's the increasing temp or my palate adjusting to the other flavors but the fruity esters that were picked up on the aroma are starting to come back out half way through the tasting, green apples and ripe bananas primarily. Very enjoyable.

Nicely carbonated, mid bodied, and very drinkable. 6.5% ABV just about in my preferred range for the style.

I'll have to admit this shattered my expectations (the benefit of avoiding reading reviews before tasting). I'm not sure how I got the idea in my head this would be one of those 'very good, but missed the mark for the style' American interpretations of a Belgian but it just isn't the case. Really a must try for lovers of tradional Saison's.

Photo of BetterDarker
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bomber poured into tulip glass.

A- Pours a thick white head with good retention and nice lace to it. Looks like sunshine without the yeast, when I poured the rest of the bomber obviously it clouded up a bit. Great looking beer!

S- Smells like the Belgian countryside. (At least how I imagine it.) Spices, pepper some earthiness and a mild citrusy hops presence.

T-Solid spice flavor with some citrus. Very well balanced a solid beer. Even a novice could take one sip and say "Saison". The label states American Saison, but I think Jack would hold up just fine across the pond.

M- Medium, smooth beer with great carbonation.

D- Easy drinking with great flavors that challenge the palate just enough to say "Enjoy!" And yes, I will have many more please.

Photo of taigor
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap poured into pint glass.

A - Poured golden hazy color with huge head that slowly dissipates leaving lacing around glass.

S - Yeast, earthy grains and some citrus.

T - Slightly bitter at start but then it gets yeasty and grains start coming through. Has a very creamy and hoppy finish.

M - Medium bodied with high carbonation.

D - Good for a saison. Very tasty but due to a slight creamy taste might be less drinkable.

Photo of radshoesbro
3.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Mr. Matthew Cammack for this East Coast treat!

Pours a cloudy golden with little head and no lacing. A swirl of the glass yields spotty bubbles that sort of just lay there.

At first it's got a sweet honey and slight citrus smell, but as it warms it smells like Veggie Bootie.

Taste of bitter hops and spiciness give this saison a unique spiciness. There is a "green" quality to this too. Different plants and herbs subtly accent this brew.

A lighter bodied beer with fair carbonation. Maybe a bit too much.

Unfortunately, I feel this is a little too hoppy, but it still a good beer.

Photo of theghost3
3.63/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden with a 1-finger frothy white head. Medium lacing.

The smell is mainly honey with some pepper & citrus hops notes. The taste is rather subdued with some mild yeast, honey & citrusy hops. Not as spicy or musty as I would like. Mouthfeel is clean, medium-bodied.

This is a drinkable Saison, but it's nothing special. All of its qualities are subdued.

Photo of mothman
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shared a bottle of this with some people at darkness day.

Poured into a chalice like glass.

Pours a white head with good retention and lace to it. Color is a hazy wheat gold.

Aroma: Spices, cloves, pepper. A very simple aroma, but it's nice.

Taste: Just like a saison should taste. Very well to the style. A lot of big spice flavor with some citrus fruit flavors as well.

Taste: Spicy and crisp. Nice amount of carbonation with a medium body. Ends with a dry aftertaste with spice notes.

Overall, a saison that I am glad that is now available in MN. I traded for this bottle in the summer, but now I can get it a lot easier.

Photo of Gmann
3.78/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very hazy honey brown color with a merangue like white head that slowly settles. Quite a few shades darker than most saisons. Nice farmhouse funk in the smell. Clove, wild flowers, white pepper and a sugary sweetness. Some nice yeast phenols. I want to say there is a slight grapefruit hop presense as well. The taste is not as pronounced as the aroma. The malt body seems to mute the phenols and has more of a brown sugar sweetness. Hoppier than most saisons and seems to be of an american hop profile. There is some light spice (clove & pepper) but not much of the funk. Still has some Belgian characteristics but noticably American made. Nice moderate body with plenty of fizzy carbonation, overall sweet but in balance, finishes with a hoppy bitterness. This is a very nice beer but not exactly to a saison style. Has some of the character but is more malty and hoppy. Its good, worthy of a purchase.

Note - I rated this to style but should be noted that it would reach a 4 rating as an unique style.

Photo of gory4d
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber with nifty art; paper over the neck reads "BOTTLED OCT 2009 BATCH NINE." I like to drink saison from a pint glass; this time it's a S. Smith imperial pint. A typical pour, nothing too vigorous: but man, that's quite a head on this beer: huge, foamy, four fingers high, just off-white with an egg white density on top and big loose bubbles below; lots of thick lacing. The smell is classic saison: a little funk, lemon zest, wet tree bark, damp wool, pan drippings, soap. The taste comes on with some mild sweetness, moving through to some sour notes like wood sorrel, then a pleasant grain flavor that grows increasingly malty, ending with a dry bitter finish reminiscent of tangelo, plus a lot of white pepper. It's perhaps more highly hopped than the classic saison, but for a "saison Americain," as the folks at Pretty Things call it, it's spot-on. It's highly carbonated, which keeps it nice and lively in the mouth, clean and crisp on the palate -- really excellent. I wish I'd gotten a second bottle, as this one is going to disappear all too soon. A really fine beer.

Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22oz brown bottle purchased at The Liquor Shoppe in Tygsborro, Mass. Bottled July 2009, Batch Eight. Pours a murky orange amber body with nearly an inch of off-white head. Smells citrussy, pithy, with some lemon zest, lavender and vanilla notes. Tastes citrussy and floral, with some cinnamon and nutmeg notes, as well as some pith, caramel. Light to medium in body with moderate carbonation. Unlike many farmhouse ales I've had. An interesting and pleasant mesh of flavors, tasty and balanced, and way too drinkable for the complexity and abv. Definitely will be picking this one up again if I get the chance!

Photo of capra12
3.55/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed out of a duvel tulip with speedwayjim.

Appearance: poured a 2 finger head that dissipates rather fast and light amber orange in color.

Smell: definitely a saison, yeasty with a hint of skunk and light grains.

Taste: opens with light grains and subtle malt profile as bittering hops come in the middle to the finish leaving a slightly malt, tangy, spicy and hoppy aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: light bodied, moderate carbonation and crisp.

Drinkability: I would have this again and would recommend this to those who want a tangy, grainy open and a mildy hoppy finish.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.63/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared this with capra12, poured from a bomber into a tulip.

A: Poured a 4 finger creamy white fine head with good retention. Brew is clear and bright orange and super carbonated. Lacing is web-like and full.

S: Farmhouse skunk, earth, cane sugar, yeast, and sour notes.

T: Yeasty and bitter orange opening. Grapefruit and grains with a slight hoppiness that shows up towards the finish.

M: Light and very subdued, super carbonated and finishes rather dry and clean.

D: Nothing too out of the ordinary here. This is good, but the flavors are all so toned down that nothing stands out. Balanced for sure, but also a little boring.

Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - golden straw/hay color with over a finger of rocky white head fed by scant amounts of carbonation

S - yeasty/bready is the first element of the aroma that i notice, followed by a distinct fruity sweetnessm one reviewer hit it on the nose, like tropical fruits, to me like unsweetened dried papaya

T - wheaty, with a peppery spice note, some fruity esthers, to me no longer distinguishable as tropical fruits, yeasty throughout

M&D - medium bodied, dry mouthfeel throughout, a drinkable saison, layered and complex enough to keep you guessing

Photo of KeefD
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one as an extra in a grade trade with jlindros. Pours a light orange color with a nice 1/2 inch white head that left some very nice lacing on my NB globe. Aroma is of some light tropical fruit, pale malts, and a touch of Belgian-like yeast. Flavor is nice and fruity, but not sweet. Very dry, flavor of orange, lemon, some grassiness, and lightly toasty malts. Very nice, not overly complex. Mouthfeel is medium to light, dry and crisp, ample carbonation. A nice beer and would to have some more from Pretty Things in the future.

Photo of jamie2dope
4.4/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great to start the night off with a bottle of Jack. This bottle comes from batch #5, which was brewed back in May. Color is a beautiful hazed golden color matched with a large white heading that has some staying power. The champagne yeast is evident in the nose, along with some fresh grains and mango. A whole array of tropical fruits hit the palate (think pineapple, guava etc.) first, followed by some peppery notes. Hops intermingle with the champagne yeast to give this beer is nice dryness in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium, prickly and really complex. Drinking this by itself is great, but pairing it with food is a sheer delight. Since this beer has been released, it has been a go to for me, and remains my favorite from the Pretty Things line. Some have complained that the quality of the newer batches has declined, but I have to say that I haven't noticed much of a difference. This is one of Massachusetts' special treats to the world of craftl beer. Cheers

Photo of augustgarage
3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Obtained in trade from ShogoKawada (thanks!). Batch 7, bottled July, 2009. Savored on the cusp of Autumn as I was too eager to save this until the Santa Ana winds bring back the 90 degree Indian Summer. Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Troubadour tulip glass.

Carrot colored liquid punctuated by three-fingers of rocky ivory foam which noisily recedes by 2/3rds into a delicate ribbon. Dainty lacing and shimmering glassy legs. The chill haze dissipates revealing a high degree of clarity for what seems to be an unfiltered ale.

Aromatics are initially subdued, but deep inhalation reveals Rainier cherry, buttermilk, and lightly fermenting hay. Some grain notes as well, bringing to mind a feed-store more than a barnyard. In addition to letting this one come up to serving temperature I suspect letting it breath would increase the intensity of the aromatics, though too much time would likely diminish the carbonation excessively.

Peppery and dry from the beginning, joined by sweet (pilsner?) malts and a hemp-like funk on the palate. Resinous sap-like sensations flow into the finish - this is one of the most hop-forward examples of the style I've had - shouting down the more delicate contributions of yeast. Phenolics abound, contributing a spicy heat (suggesting a higher ABV than exists) to the notes of orange bitters andgrass that conclude the finish. The dryness is wonderful, and quite a contrast to some of my favorite domestic saisons (e.g. Lost Abbey's Red Barn Ale, which is sweeter than tradtion calls for).

Carbonation level is just a hair less than I would prefer, but still very good. Mouthfeel is not quite medium-bodied, and very lightly creamy.

If not for the presence of a certain earthiness, I might mistake this for a Belgian IPA. It lacks the complexity or tartness of many saisons, but is a proudly "Americanized" take on the style. If this one were regularly available in my neck of the woods, I can see it growing on me, in which case I might throw another half point on top of the "taste" rating...

Photo of CavePainter
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy yet bright golden color. Minimal head with nice lacing.

S: Citrus and earthy hops

T: A fleeting moment of soft sweetness yields to citrus, spice and sharp hop bitterness. Bold and very tasty. Dry yeast and slight sourness. Peppery spice. Citric. Earthy hops.

Mf: Heavy for a saison in my humble opinion. Dry finish. This beer is a bit of a shocker on the first sip.

D: Once you get past the initial bite of this beer, it is actually very tasty and drinkable. I think that this is a beer for those with the proper palate. That is to say, I don't think that this is the beer for everyone and while quite enjoyable, I am not sure that this is a beer that I would drink multiple rounds of. It grows on you.

Photo of JTWILDOATS
3.9/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well...this lovely local brew has that traditional belgian/saison taste to it with a more mellow and rounded finish.

I enjoyed the spice that emerged deep into the glass--and the tasts overal resembled that of an amber ale/belgian blend. Very easy to drink.

Photo of scottg
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

July 2009/ Batch Seven
22 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a cloudy orange gold color with a two finger white fluffy head with solid retention leaving patchy lacing down the glass. Lots of citrus in the nose, mostly orange with floral notes and some bubblegum aroma. Upfront, the taste is of orange and corriander like a belgian wit, which gives way to pear and vanilla then comes lemon hop and pepper spiciness. Well carbonated with a really nice, dry finish. An easy drinking beer, I only regret I didn't pick up some bleu cheese to pair with this great saison. I'll have to try that next time because there will definitely be a next time.

Photo of DIM
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a: This was a slightly hazy cloudy golden color, a little on the dark side. It poured with a big, fluffy head that faded to spotty lace.

s: Soft aromas of apricots, vanilla, toffee, leafy hops, some wet earthy grains, and dry yeastiness.

t: Slightly on the sweet side for a saison, flavors of sugary toffee start things off. The finish is drier, tasting orf yeasty cloves and mildly bitter, leafy hops. There is also a lingering spicy, peppery bite.

m: Kind of heavy for a saison, maybe its the sweetness. The carbonation is gentle and long lasting.

d: I admit that I bought this because I like the label. I was rewarded with a very nice sasion, perfect for this warm fall evening.

Photo of mjl21
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade...thanks Russ. 22 ounce bottle poured into a snifter. Part of Batch Four and was bottled May 2009. No abv info is given.

A-Pours a hazy yellow with some orange highlights. A pour right down the middle gives it a really nice two finger white head that crackles as it sits in the glass. The head stays throughout and rests at a half finger level. Tons of bubbles can be seen rising from the bottom.

S-Some sweet fruit, particularly apple and pear, stand out. There is a tad bit of funk which gets stronger as it warms. Not picking up on the citrus/grapefruit notes from the Cascade dry hopping.

T-The fruit is definitely there, but not as strong as it is in the nose. There is a little bit of funk and some leather in the middle. There is a touch of booze towards the finish and also is a tad bit grainy. The afteraste reminds me in some ways of tobacco and there is some lingering grapefruit bitterness. The yeast used also gets stronger as it warms.

M-Medium bodied and it is crisp and dry from the lively carbonation.

D-An easy drinking beer that is perfect for a nice day.

Overall this was another great beer from PT. The flavors worked well together and the lingering bitterness added a nice element to the beer. This is a really good warm weather beer.

Jack D'or from Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project
91 out of 100 based on 1,477 ratings.