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Saison VOS - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saison VOSSaison VOS

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

99 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 99
Hads: 219
rAvg: 4
pDev: 8.75%
Wants: 9
Gots: 22 | 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:
Beer added by: Todd on 12-01-2002

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 99 | Hads: 219
Photo of jdg204
3.91/5  rDev -2.3%
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. (903 characters)

Photo of Brianmerrilyn
4.55/5  rDev +13.8%
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! (513 characters)

Photo of lnashsig
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to ShanePB for the chance to taste this. My first Sly Fox beer. The bottle nearly blew out my eye when the cork flew out after I unscrewed the cage. It gushed for a bit, but then subsided pretty quickly. Poured from bottle into my Boulevard Farmhouse glass. Pours a rich straw yellow and transparent color, thick cloud-like head fills the glass, and recedes very slowly. Excellent retention and lacing. Smell- clove, fruity esters, straw, spicy phenols. A wonderful smelling Saison. Taste- clove, cracked pepper, belgian yeast, some spicy notes and light fruity esters. Very well balanced between the flavors. On second sip, I get some winey flavors, similar to some of the bitterness and fruit flavors found in a sauvignon blanc. A very dry finish a rich carbonation here too. Overall, this is a great example of the style and a highly enjoyable and balanced beer I would seek out again. (900 characters)

Photo of DaggerEyes
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
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 (583 characters)

Photo of Richardberg
4.32/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Cork exploded as soon as the wire was loosened! Guess that happens when you have a yeasty, bottle conditioned beer marked "best by 4/13/09." Once things calmed down: hazy, pale, and golden with a big lacy head.

S: citrus zest, pepper, white grape, yeast, grass, bit of sweetness

T: surprisingly mild given the complex nose. Basic mixture of pale malts, lots of hopping (but still basic; doesn't give the impression of blending too many things together), and some yeasty residue. Finish is crisp, bready, and mostly dry despite the sugar/lemon you might expect from the smell. Overall a very pleasant and unpretentious balance.

M: medium body with tons of fizz (see above!)

D: Spicy & interesting without anything to offend or overwhelm the palate. Nice. (800 characters)

Photo of edskirk3
2.97/5  rDev -25.8%
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. (1,980 characters)

Photo of bmills1608
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Darker yellow with an orange tinge in color. Smallish head, fades fast.

On the nose was a little funk, floral/citrus goldings and a wee bit of earthy goodness. Taste was bright and clean, with spicy Belgian yeast notes. Overall very drinkable, with some slight earthy tones. Towards the end a lot of orange flavors began to push through. Carbonation was good, not super fizzy but not too soft either, nice and tight. Finish was fairly dry, clean with some more spice.

Overall a very drinkable and approachable beer. Perfect for summer quenching. Perhaps a bit on the light side with lower end complexity, but very well done. (630 characters)

Photo of BethanyB
4.31/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Good clarity. Pale gold in color. Large, foamy white head is not as persistent as it should be.

Smell: Lemon zest, honey, pale malt, and coriander make for a truly delectable aroma. The bouquet is big, without being overpowering.

Taste: A distinct, sawdusty, barnyard taste is sweetened and balanced by honey, and a spritz of citrusy esters. A full, moderate bitterness settles in towards the end of each mouthful, but does not linger on.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light, with medium-high carbonation. Effervescent, but with more smoothness than usual--nice.

Overall: Probably the best Saison I've had to date. Other styles are usually too spritley and fruity. This version stays true to the farmhouse, spice, and bitterness complexities a good old fashioned Saison should have, and milks them for all they're worth, while managing to stay crowd-pleasing. Truly impressed and...dare I say, inspired? (910 characters)

Photo of ikats
4.25/5  rDev +6.3%
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. (844 characters)

Photo of Imsothirsty
4.16/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 into some large wine glasses. Huge head, nice bubbles streaming from the bottom, lighter orange/dark yellow. Big chunk of sediment in the bottom of the bottom.

Smell is sweet floral, grassy, and a little alcohol

Taste is excellent: Grassy, earthy, cloves and other spices, some banana, the alcohol comes through for just an instant, otherwise its well covered. Some bready yeast. Overall a little too much spice for my personal taste, but really good complexity

Mouthfeel: Light and very bubbly, clean

A solid beer, good complexity for the style, very glad to have tried this. (598 characters)

Photo of BrewSomerville
3.32/5  rDev -17%
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. (616 characters)

Photo of tomthumbsblues
3.88/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This slightly cloudy apricot-tinted beer produces a huge frothy head. Plenty of streams of carbonation arising from the bottom. Aroma is sour with a hint of clove. Taste is sour with good earthy feel. Nice malt finish with a pleasant aftertaste. A light tingly mouthfeel well in keeping with the style. Overall, I was pretty impressed with this beer and I look forward to having it again. (388 characters)

Photo of MacMalt
3.81/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had this beer for the first time on draft at an outdoor sporting event. Poured medium yellow with a thin light head and lacing. Not much of an aroma. The taste features citrus: lemon and a hint of orange or pineapple and some spice. It is only slightly bitter. Nicely carbonated. Overall, this is a very nice saison and is delightful and refreshing on a warm day. (370 characters)

Photo of dougofthefuture
3.88/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to yourefragile for this one. Best by 5/26/12. Corked and caged.

A - Giant head on a very slow pour, very light golden in color underneath all that fluffy head.

S - The crisp pils malt and the bright hops from the stronger hop level make this smell like a dry hopped pilsner instead of a saison. While it is fresh and inviting, it is somewhat confusing.

T&M - Again, very confusing. Part pilsner (light body, dry), part english bitter (bright crisp bitterness), part spicy belgian saison. Overall, the bitterness wins out on the yeast profile, which is a little disappointing, but it is still quite good.

D - A very refreshing beer, albeit one with a bit of an identity crisis. A great end of summer beer on Labor Day. (730 characters)

Photo of HotHands
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - arrived a clear gold color with a very rich, creamy white head.

S - Belgian yeast, citrus, fruitiness.

T - lots of different fruity and spicy flavors dancing around here with a good yeast backbone. There is a bit of toasty smokiness going on in the background, but it's significant. Finish is bitter and clean.

M - slightly below average carbonation. Good body.

Overall - a very nice American made saison that could give Hennepin a run for its money. Good job, Sly Fox. (477 characters)

Photo of railman
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a somewhat hazy off yellow color with a huge billowy white head. Lots of sticky lacing on glass.
Mildly carbonated with tiny bubbles

Aroma of yeast and lemon/citrus.

Clean and refreshing taste. Would be perfect in the summer.

A little on the thin side as far as body goes.

Overall this is a decent brew for the style.

Cheers (335 characters)

Photo of GreenJetta912
3.87/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours golden with small head, good lacing.

Spicy belgian yeast aroma. sweet malts. wheat notes. citrus notes.

Great mouthfeel. syrupy yet smooth.

taste is very smooth at first then the spicy belgian yeast character comes through in the middle. very sweet and malty. slight hop character balances this out.

finish is very wheat forward and smooth with sweet notes. (367 characters)

Photo of NolanGTI
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice Saison from Sly Fox. Presented in a nice bomber with great looking white label and cork finish. Bottle conditioned. Head is thick and white as a ghost, lasts for awhile on top of a pale cloudy raft of beer. Mouthfeel is nice and tight with lots of carbonation going on. Very peppery and not much citrus going on, slight hint of lemon here and there. Not a huge yeast profile, little souring, more spicy than anything. Could use a bit more orange/lemon and a bit less pepper, but overall very drinkable. (509 characters)

Photo of jorg2619
4.36/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was happy to get this 750ml bottle in my quest to drink more regional brews from Pa and the Mid-Atlantic region.

I was surprised by the carbonation after opening the bottle. I carefully poured a tulip glass of foam and waited. This aside the foam settled into a clear light amber color with lots of carbonation rising throughout. It smelled of yeast and and a hint of bread. The taste is crisp, again bready, finishing smoothly with a mild tart ending of hops not noticed until a few drinks. A refreshing farm house ale, and another solid brew by Sly Fox. Over carbonation was not that big of a deal for me as it is bottle conditioned. I would buy this again. (663 characters)

Photo of stingo
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pale straw color with hints of orange. Nose is light fruit flavors suggesting hints of banana and something citrusy/acidic, carried on an earthy, open breeze. Most of the taste is centered in the middle of the palate, with the flavors in the nose carried through. It seems to be fairly temperature sensitive - when served too cold it has an astringently dry taste which sours the rest of the experience, but when served somewhat warmer that dryness receides into the background to form the foundation of the beer. Mouthfeel is near ideal, with a light small finish. (573 characters)

Photo of dennarb
4.46/5  rDev +11.5%
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. (365 characters)

Photo of chefdejour
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
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. (329 characters)

Photo of harryhood1
4.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Great appearance and aroma in this Saison. Very dry and appealing. Great carbonation with tons of bubbles rising throughout the whole drinking session.

Was really impressed with this beer! Not as good as Hennepin but damn close and I'm a huge Hennepin fan. If you haven't had this one yet and you're a Saison fan, grab it. You won't be disappointed. (350 characters)

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Saison VOS from Sly Fox Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 99 ratings.