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Saison VOS - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saison VOSSaison VOS

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

195 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 195
Reviews: 97
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 8
Gots: 13 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A Belgian style Saison (or Farmhouse Ale) brewed with German Pils malt and hopped with East Kent Goldings. Fermented with a special proprietary yeast which imparts its dry, spicy character. Golden orange in color.

(Beer added by: Todd on 12-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 195 | Reviews: 97 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AltBock
3.43/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I was able to try this Sly Fox beer on tap during High Street Grill's Sly Fox promo on 4/22/2008. They served it to me in a Sly Fox standard pint glass.

This Sly Fox poured a lightly hazy golden sunshine yellow with a decent 1/2 inch fluffy head of white foam. I thought it had good retention that left behind a small white film and single solitary blot of white lace. The aroma was lightly citrusy with hints of lemon, bubblegum, yeast, and pine needles. While the aroma was lighly citrusy, the taste couldn't get enough of the citrus flavors. Beyond the citrus flavor front was pine needles, grapefruit, lightly toasted wheat, yeast, and ended with a mild hop punch of dried citrus hops. The mouthfeel was light like it should have been, but it had a funky aftertaste that mixed together dried citrus hops, malted wheat, and something that tasted like it was antiseptic. It's hard to explain, but it sure was funky. In the end, I think Sly fox did a great job on their Saison. It's just too bad the aftertaste had to be funky.

AltBock, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of dennarb
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I had my first taste of this surprising beer from a freshly opened keg at Standard Tap. Bright yellow with a big snow white head. This is a crisp, exceptionally refreshing beer with a hint of apple cider in the nose and a fun spicy quality including a little smack of home made root beer when it goes down. As the days get hotter this is going to become a favorite.

dennarb, Apr 06, 2008
Photo of Brianmerrilyn
4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into mini-heffe glass at 08 Long Island Brew festival. Brian Riley said this farmhouse ale is better in a bottle because it carbonates itself. Regardless, the tap version had my eyes rolling in pleasure. Cloudy golden to my eyes with mammonth head, white head reatined well.. Light and dry taste and fluffy sudsy mouthfeel and more pungent and tangy(lemon peel/white peper, floral something) as you finish it off. Very impessive saison and hope it's more complex next year as I hit Phonexville one mo time!

Brianmerrilyn, Apr 01, 2008
Photo of irishkyle21
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer slow and I mean real slow. Ended up with a goblet full of foam (only 1/4 was beer). Leaves some lacing as it finally starts to settle. Has a cloudy golden color, tons of carbonation.

Smells of fruits (apples, grapes and oranges), some yeasty mustiness and pale malts.

Tastes of fruits (apples and oranges more than anything IMO), yeast, spices and malts. This is very complex for such a quaffable beer.

irishkyle21, Feb 12, 2008
Photo of Phyl21ca
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a deep slightly hazy golden color ale with a large pure white foamy head with good retention and some pretty nice lacing. Aroma of Belgian yeast with nice refreshing floral malt notes. Taste is also domination by some nice floral Belgian malt with some nice attenuation from the yeast. Body is slightly too light for the style with some great carbonation. Very well done for the style with lots of character and definitely something I would wish to try again.

Phyl21ca, Oct 16, 2007
Photo of Stimack
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this one on tap when visiting the Royersford brewpub. Came in a 10-ounce glass, has a quite clear golden color with a slight haze to it. Also has a fair sized white head that has good retention leaving lacing along the sides of the glass. The aroma is very nice, malt is noticeable but it is the spices that clearly come out, mostly a peppery scent. The flavors that seems to come across the most clearly is a peppery spiciness but is not the only thing as I pick up a clear malt flavor that seems to give a bready taste with highlights of light fruit flavors and it ends with a nice spicy hop. I definitely did not do this beer justice in the review but needless to say it is well balanced, easy drinking and overall a very good brew. Clearly worth trying.

Stimack, Oct 09, 2007
Photo of DaggerEyes
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

the cork really shot out of this bottle, thought I was popping a bottle of champagne not a bottle of beer.

pours a hazy gold with a thick craggy froathy white head with small beads of carbonation rising to the surface...only visible when held to the light.

clean peppery aroma with sweet notes of lemon and some funky earth

Tons of spice on the taste, hits the tip of the tongue like a ton of bricks. Cirtus notes mingle with some bubble gummy flavors

Medium Carbonation/body a clean and somewhat dry finish

Super drinkable beer...I could just drink decent Siason's all night

DaggerEyes, Sep 30, 2007
Photo of chefdejour
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a Yellow, light honey color, slightly hazy with a tight creamy head. No lacing.

S: Lightly phenolic, light sweet malt and peppery aromas.

T: Bready, spicy (rye-like) malts, light bubblegum sweetness, mild lemon finish.

M: med/light carbonation though crisp, sparkling and refreshing

D: Very pleasant and drinkable.

chefdejour, Sep 13, 2007
Photo of BrewSomerville
3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Aroma is mostly spices, and some fruit. Cloves, a little banana, pepper.

Looks cloudy golden/orange. Big, white rocky head. Good retention & lacing.

Tastes bready and spicy. A little fruity, definitely getting orange peel in this Beer. Peppery too. A touch of sweetness is there too.

Mouthfeel is very gassy, crisp, and prickly. Fine carbonation from the natural conditioning, however, a bit much in my opinion. Light bodied...maybe on the heavier side of light though.

Overall, I think that this is a good Beer. Great for warmer weather. If I had to pick one thing to change it would be the carbonation.

BrewSomerville, Jun 27, 2007
Photo of yelterdow
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Duvel tulip at just over fridge temperature. Cellared for one year.

Appearance- Phenomenal!! Hazy, light pale gold with a ridiculous four-finger monster of a head. Gargantuan patches of spiderweb lacing all down the glass. A small mountain of foam surrounded by a resilient head remains throughout.

Smell- Sweet and perfumy, with the most subtle pepper notes. *Very* floral. Excellent.

Taste- Spicy and peppery, and at the same time mellow and exquisitely balanced. Take the nose and translate it into flavor and there you have it.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Smooth with just the right amount of carbonation... prickly to the point of being exactly as it should be. A fantastic example of this style... the most pleasant surprise yet this spring.

yelterdow, Jun 07, 2007
Photo of Crosling
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 mL. First impression is, this is criminally underated. This is without question, one of the best Saison examples to come out of America. Most similar to the straight Saison Dupont, probably using the same yeast. It’s a bit sweeter and not as dry as Dupont, a bit less hoppy as well. On the palate, there are some lovely fruit flavors, most notably pear and banana. This is a great saison, clearly the brewer is passionate about the style.

Crosling, May 13, 2007
Photo of ski271
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a lightly hazy medium yellow with a large, white, pillowy head with good retention. The smell is of moderate wheat over yeast and mild malt aromas. Citrus, flowers, coriander, melon, green apple and some light banana. The fruitiness is light but very nice. Taste-wise, it’s quite similar to the nose, but better. Malts come on a little stronger accompanied by some fruity esters, dry hops, and a little more spiciness. The finish is floral, lightly bitter and slightly astringent. It has a medium-light body and slightly syrupy texture. Pretty good, but nothing spectacular.

ski271, Apr 26, 2007
Photo of TexIndy
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got in a trade with BeerBeing - thanks! No best by or bottled on info on label but it did have a copyright of 2005 so gonna assume '05 vintage unless using older labels. Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle in a tulip glass. Was a hazy golden color with tons of yeast floating around. The aroma was typical saison with tad more dryness that average. Good fruit and spicyness. The taste followed the smell and was really good. I'd loved to try a fresh sample of it to see how the flavors are at the start but if '05 this one held up well. Good mouthfeel with good carb. Overall, I like this one but since older is a little muted but will seek out a new one. (3.5, RB, T, Y)

TexIndy, Apr 19, 2007
Photo of BlindPig
4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours with a huge thick white head on a pretty clear yellow body.
S- Citrus, lemons, bread, yeast, spices, light malts behind it all.
T- Follows the aroma just a little less on the citrus side and you get more of the yeast flavors. Spices build up on tongue and hops leave a nice lingering bitterness on the tongue.
M-Thin body with high carbonation.
D- It is a really good Saison. I could have a few of these just I wish it was a little cheaper. Still good and if I ever saw this when I went out of town I would pick one up.

BlindPig, Apr 14, 2007
Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into my Duvel tulip glass. Appears a dark golden yellow with a huge three fingers of dense and fluffy foam. Smells of peppery spices, and citrus. Tastes fruity, bitter from hops, sweet from the malt and spicy from the yeast. Stays very dry through the finish. Very crisp and clean tasting with moderate carbonation. This is one of my favorite Saisons. It paired nicely with some Asiago, Fontina and crackers.

ClockworkOrange, Feb 13, 2007
Photo of jdg204
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this bad man as part of a sampler at the Sly Fox brewery and restaurant, both highly recco'd.

Appearance - Very nice hazy golden color, definetly lived up to Belgian standards.

Smell - Nice spiced citrus odor, would've like it to be a bit more powerful.

Taste - Very nice balance here between the sweet malt and citrus and the slightly bitter spices, extremely well done. The natural graininess really comes through nicely as well.

Mouthfeel - The is a big flavor beer so you definetly need to take your time drinking it, almost a bit much.

Drinkability - This was a high quality Saison, and Sly Fox deserves a lot of credit for having the guts to take a shot at this brew. This doesn't quite live up to Ommegang's Hennepin standards, but then again what does? If you happen to get to Sly Fox, do youself a favor and have this brew, but I'm not sure this is a go out of your way beer.

jdg204, Feb 06, 2007
Photo of ikats
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Golden in color with fluffy, perfectly white head that subsides to a good-looking quarter inch cover. Slightly hazy.

Banana sweetness dominates the aroma. I also smell citrus notes, spices - wonderful yeast aroma.

Sticky sweetness in the taste is complimented by spicy bite. A very nice balance. I find my mind wondering away from this review back to the glass. I can't help myself but to take another sip. Very drinkable beer. I thought that a 750 ml bottle may be too much for tonight - this is not an issue anymore.

Strength is noticeable (but in a good, warming way). This brew is light to medium in body.

Now, I'll be honest and say that I cannot review this beer within the style since I am not very familiar with saisons. However, I can also honestly say that this is a very tasty beverage. Playful, satisfying, flavorful.

ikats, Nov 28, 2006
Photo of brentk56
4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy light golden color with a meringue of a head that takes forever to drop

Smell: Lemon meringue, white pepper and yeasty tones

Taste: Starts with a yeasty tart lemon meringue pie aspect; after the swallow a a grainy bitterness appears and leaves abruptly, only to be replaced by the yeast and lemon meringue pie tartness that lasts into the finish

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with plenty of carbonation; some warmth on the finish

Drinkability: A very nice take on the style; great to see this brewery give it a shot

brentk56, Oct 13, 2006
Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the glass crystal clear golden with a super high off-white frothy and moussy head which lasted for days to lace the glass.

The aroma was earthy, grassy and a bit spicy. The spice characer was low and in the background while the aroma was more floral and fruity as the beer warmed and the head finally fell. Some honeylike aromas were also present along with some DMS (cooked corn).

The flavor was rather light with a very nice and subtle spice character coupled with a perceptible, but low sweetness that reminded me of honey. The flavor had just a pinch of pepper along with a very slight cinnamon. Earthy characteristics were in the flavor just as in the aroma, but at a lower level.

The finish was dry with lasting light spice and a very light honey hanging on till the bitter end. The body was medium with a high carbonation and a creamy mouthfeel. The carbonation was just a bit overdone and a light warming does occur in the esophagus after consumption. A tasty treat!

750 ml corked and bailed bottle. Thanks BeerBeing!

GCBrewingCo, Jul 24, 2006
Photo of DrJay
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy straw yellow with a rocky, fluffy, white head supported by constant streams of bubbles. As the foam subsided, thick clumps of lace were left on the glass. Very nice. Lemony, bready aroma with a bit of tartness and white pepper. Sweet, doughy flavour with some citrus and spice. Alcohol and peppery tingle lingers on the palate along with a hint of tart fruit and white grapes. Medium/light body and high carbonation that fills the mouth with foam at each sip. Just off-dry with a hint of residual sugar. Nicely balanced and quite enjoyable.

DrJay, Jun 10, 2006
Photo of jaluria
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Heavy carbonation comes with this particular beer. It poured a yellow-straw color with a frothy, white colored head that left behind rings of lacing. Aromas of honey, sugar, and dried fruit (apricot and honeydew) seemed to come out nicely. The taste followed the nose except that the beer was overly dry with bitter fruit flavors providing too sharp a contrast with the underlying sweetness. A milder version of this sweet & sour combination would work very well. Also, a bit too creamy in my mouth. Overall, this is an enjoyable beer with plenty of flavor.

jaluria, Jun 08, 2006
Photo of edskirk3
2.98/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I bought this because I have of late become interested in this style, because as Randy Mosher puts it, this style "is as close to homebrew as a commercial product can get." Before this, I had only tried Yards Saison, which apparently isn't the best example but was nonetheless a good introduction. As I type, I have a batch of homebrewed Saison fermenting in the next room.

Saison VOS comes in a very big La Fin du Mondish 750mL bottle, corked, no freshness information whatsoever. There was no dust on the bottle when I purchased it, so I figured I was good.

With a pop of the cork, it pours a cloudy gold color with a fizzy white head that doesn't go away as fast as you'd think. There's a lot of carbonation going on here.

I really took my time with this bottle, so I was sniffing it a lot as it warmed up. Coming right out of the fridge it smells very medicinal, almost too much, and there's a major farmhouse character, i.e. it's funky/pungent like gorgonzola or bleu cheese. Over time the aroma mellows out.

All the way through, the palate is consistently like perfume. It's a combination of the aforementioned farmhouse features and what I'm assuming are the usual Saison spices, coriander and bitter orange peel. It's almost too much, in my opinion. "Perfume vapors" linger in the aftertaste. As it warms, sweetness and stickiness become apparent. Any hop bitterness is being masked by something else because I am not picking it up.

There's no ABV statement on the bottle, but here on the site they say it's 6.9%... that sounds about right. To me this doesn't make it a traditional Saison, one that was made for summer refreshment. I'm not complaining, I'm just sayin'. Despite this, it's light-medium bodied, and has a champagne-like dryness.

In the end, the only thing I'm thinking about is that there might be too much of something at play here. It's too perfumey for me, too medicinal. It's a noble attempt, but they have to tone something down here.

edskirk3, Jun 06, 2006
Photo of tgbljb
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured (or should I say the beer expoded for the bottle) a hazy light amber color with massive white puffy, chunky head. Champagne-like carbonation bubble strem to the top. Nice lacy coating. Smell is malty, peppery, spicy. banana-like. Taste follows through with a firm spice, fruity, malty texture. Good creamy mouthfeel. Very drinkable and very enjoyable.

tgbljb, May 21, 2006
Photo of TastyTaste
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to BeerBeing for the 750 from BIF 25**

Appearance: Pours with a mountainous head of white foam, large bubbles fade slowly, leaving a rocky landscape. Body is light gold, hazy, with streams of carbonation.

Smell: Pepper and Belgian style yeast. Banana and some citrus. Alcohol adds to the overall sharpness of the beer.

Taste: Sharp and spicy. Initially citrus and pepper, slightly metallic. The citrus ends this with some nice hops, but overall a very strong and assertive flavor.

Mouthfeel: The good carbonation adds to the sharpness of the beer.

Drinkability: A good, enjoyable saison, could stand a little more complexity and depth, but still a well above average beer.

TastyTaste, May 15, 2006
Photo of BEERchitect
4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very strong Saison. Not an outstanding feature that makes it great, it's just well balanced and void of any off flavors. A typical yellow, hazy brew with eruptive carbonation and head retention. Big fruity aromas. Citrus: oranges, lemons, pineapples, banannas and peppery. Grainy flavors are very low. Tastes fruity, juicy, lightly tart, musky, and yeasty. Very efforvescent on the toung (almost numbing). Finishes lightly sweet and dry. Great hot weather drinker. Almost wish it had a bit more funky flavors--woodiness and muskiness.

BEERchitect, May 05, 2006
Saison VOS from Sly Fox Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 195 ratings.