Of Love & Regret (Import Series Vol. 1) - Stillwater Artisanal Ales

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Of Love & Regret (Import Series Vol. 1)Of Love & Regret (Import Series Vol. 1)

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very good

122 Reviews
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Reviews: 122
Hads: 325
Avg: 3.79
pDev: 21.9%
Wants: 14
Gots: 43 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: yourefragile on 08-06-2010

For the first edition of the Stillwater Import Series I traveled to the village of Beerzel, located in the Antwerp province of Belgium. Here I teamed up with brewmaster Jef Goetelen to craft an authentic Belgian version of my liquid interpretation of the Spring season. A recipe originally contrived a few years prior as a collaboration brew with my good friend Paul Kretzer. The base is German barley & wheat, with a touch of Belgian aromatic; accented with grassy hops and an array of spring botanicals (heather, chamomile, lavender, & dandelion). Like a fresh meadow in spring.
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Reviews: 122 | Hads: 325
Photo of REDAMI
4.85/5  rDev +28%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from 11.2oz bottle into Chimay goblet.

A - Orange gold color, very hazy, head disappears quickly.

S - Sweet orange/peach, almost like cobbler. Yeast and funk as it warms.

T - Apricot, sweet floral, dandelion wine, springtime...yes springtime in a glass. Slightly bready aftertaste.

M - Fine carbonation, coats the tongue in a good way.

I liked this one a lot. It's not a typical saison/farmhouse ale. The grassy hay flavors have been replaced by sweet fruity florals but the spring/summer attraction remains. A great beer to have on a sunny day.

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Photo of Libationguy
4.68/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Unfiltered apple juice in color with a chill beer haze. Head is dense, off-white in color and has a moderate retention. Gentle lacing in the glass.

Highly interesting and carries a rich intensity. Gingerbread and crystallized ginger with rich, warm malt. Citrus, cardamon and bay all lingering in the nose.

Full, lush style that carries across the palate, building in intensity, all the time without becoming heavy. Pumpernickle bread, gingerbread, cardamon, nutmeg. Regal in its structure, the hops keep everything clean and supported. Great balance and length.

The medium+ body of the beer carries its richness without being heavy. The texture is almost creamy.

Utterly delicious!

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Photo of WastingFreetime
4.54/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from yesterday's notes.
A. Cloudy orange-peach colored with a stiff egg-white head.
S. Funky farmhouse wet hay with clove, peppery notes, plums, lavender, earthy notes, grassy herbals like sage and even some rosemary sprinkled all over the place, on top of a braised stone fruit stew. Insanely complex without being muddled or confused.
T. Initial ginger hit tempered by cardamom spilled into wet hay with tamarind sauce on top. All the grassy herbals in the nose translate well into the taste, but in addition to this I get a pinch of sweet and sour sauce over the top of the caramel malt.
M. The heavy carbonation delivers the spicing perfectly to where it needs to go. Body is medium to light.

Absolutely amazing brew for people who like heavy herbs and spice elements in their brew.

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Photo of StaEva
4.54/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a unique brew. Good translucent-but-hazy amber-brown caramel color. Big head...three full fingers. Great bombastic frothiness.

Truly outstanding and prominent herbal notes in the nose. Rosemary, sage, and pine dominate the aromatics; unforgettable and more appetizing than you could imagine—had my mouth watering immediately. Other notes but the melange was so complex it was hard to discern everything...definitely some lemony musk underlying.

Taste is an explosion of well rounded bitterness with smooth malt and green herbaceous flavors. Definitely sage and rosemary in perfect subtlety—not obvious, but they blend incredibly with the caramel malt layers and hoppy freshness and floral tones—lavender and chamomile maybe with a bit of autumn spice. Incredibly complex with strong carbonation that holds the flavors in the mouth well.

This is a must have simply because of it's complexity. You may not want it everyday, or even every month, but it has vast and complex merit, even for a complex style of beer, this stands out.

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Photo of BrooDood
4.53/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage. Carefully stored. Murky brownish gold color. Looks like honey mixed with river water. Cap went off like a shot; it would've overflowed had the glass not been there ready. Doesn't have the big bouquet of flower flavor it had fresh, nor the earthy, wilted flower flavor it had when it was two. It's now got a lot of lemon. Zest and peel mostly, but some citrusy fruitiness too. A little grapefruit as well. A little honey flavor and maybe some melon - cantaloupe but without the sweetness. What I would assume dried cantaloupe would taste like. Grape flavors present as well, but green, not red. A bit rich but a thin, buttery, dry mouthfeel. It coats your tongue and stays there, imparting a bit of the earthiness that was so prominent last year and a last bit of honey and grape.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

: A hazy gold pour produces a 2” quickly dissipating foam collar. S: floral, come dandelion and lavender, light fruit, citrus. T: Starts lightly sweet and fruity but balanced by alcohol and lemony tartness and an earthiness from the herbs. Layers of flavor with the chamomile apparent, citrus and a suggestion of Herbs de Provance. F: Fairly light for all the flavor, moderately effervescent. O: Layers of flavor that come into balance for a very drinkable and repeatable saison.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Import Series Vol. #1: Belgian Saison Ale
brewed and bottled by Stillwater at 't Hofbrouwerijke Beerzel, Belgium. Imported by 12 Percent, Brooklyn, NY

Carefully poured to leave the yeast behind in the bottle, a short head of creamy off-white foam rises steadily above a crystal clear golden-orange body. Streams of very fine tiny bubbles can be seen rising quickly to the surface. As might be imagined, the yeast pour leaves it cloudy and more orange-copper colored in the glass.

The aroma is yeasty, malty and hoppy with dominant notes of fresh corainder seeds, pepper, chalk, clove, dried grass, rose petals, and soft melon.

In the flavor more of the malt comes through adding a note of lightly honeyish sugary dough. A bit of berry-like fruitiness comes through as well, and a touch of subtle pine. It's more compact and focused than the wide, airy aroma suggests. The bitterness balances at a moderate level, and it finishes almost without change: a bump of fruitiness appears and disappears quickly, and then dusty soft clove emerges as the last standing note as the malt dissolves from the palate. With the yeast pour it becomes even more complex, adding in a nice bit of nuttiness, and some lemon and orange notes. The alcohol is never noticeable.

In the mouth it's light bodied bordering on medium, and velvety smooth across the palate.

It's quite a nice beer with an eloquent, expansive aroma followed by a more subtle, focused flavor. You could quaff this beer but you would miss all of its beautiful nuance. Superb!

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Photo of allengarvin
4.47/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous label! I poured this into a 12-oz mug. It makes a very effervescent pour, with a quick, tall airy head that fades almost as quick. Aroma is big and not really identifiable, at least by me. Very floral, sweet, with herbal notes. There are things that seem vaguely familiar, but they're not ingredients I cook with so I can't really say what they are. It's nice, though.

Flavor follows... I can certainly pick out a large coriander presence here, some nice vegetal pepperiness--reminds me of certain species of basil, or asian cilantro. Loads of yeasty phenols are present. Very unique beer, and tasty. Wish it came in 750s instead of 12oz, and in larger numbers.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.45/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy deep orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, dry yeast, small fruitiness, and a nice earthy presence. In the taste, a hint of fruit and a small dry yeast and earthiness. A small bite and a medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry, small fruit and yeast presence in the aftertaste. Nice fruitiness and earth, I would have said this is a saison, not a herbed/ spiced beer.

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Photo of justintcoons
4.42/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip.

A: Pours a cloudy, murky, rustic orange with different types of black, white and yeasty debris at the bottom. The head is over-the-top due to the initial GUSH! BEWARE! This is the second time I bought this beer because I lost nearly all but 3oz the first time around.

N: Very herbal and spicy. Sage, lemongrass, hibiscus, clove, coriander, lemon juice, chai, lavender, some barnyard funk and maybe some ginger.

T: Lemon juice, sage, rose petal (hibiscus) and ginger upfront. Mid-palate ushers in lavender, chai, clove, pear, apple and lightly toasted grains. Finishes with a mild barnyard funk, lemon citrus, pear, clean grains and a bouquet of spices and herbs comprised of clove, sage, ginger, lavender, chai, hibiscus, hay, grass and coriander.

M: Light-medium bodied, spicy, dry, clean and prickly.

O: I find this beer quite pleasant. Full on spicy, herbal, earthy and dry paired with a mild Belgian funk works for me. Would make a beautiful Spring beverage. Very refreshing. Now Stillwater just has to work on their bottles NOT EXPLODING!

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Photo of MattyG85
4.4/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden orange with a lot of bubbles. Solid finger of white head that settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A spicy and fruity yeast driven aroma with a scent of spices and fruit esters. Belgian yeast with hints of clove, pepper, and funk along with big hints of lavender, chamomile, and heather. Fruit hints of lemon, orange, green apple, pear, and white grapes. Pale malt with hints of wheat, grains, straw, and cracker. Also some hints of grassy hops. A very nice aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a spicy and fruity yeast driven Belgian taste with notes of fruit and floral spices. Upfront Belgian yeast with notes of clove, peppers, and funk. Spice notes of lavender, heather, and chamomile. Zesty fruit notes of lemon, orange, green apple, white grape, pear, and melon. Pale malt with notes of straw, wheat, grains, and cracker. Background notes of grassy hops. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, spicy, and pretty drying.

Overall: A very good twist on a Belgian style Saison. Good Belgian spice and fruit esters with a nice kick of floral spices.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.39/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

People are crazy. This is more saison than spiced beer.

Pours out a brownish orange with a half inch of head, minimal lace.

I don't smell the wheat malt but barley comes through, the botanicals come next, floral and very nice. The yeast and some lime come in at the end.

Wheat, lightly toasted barley and lime start this off. Some nice floral notes and grassy hops come in the middle. A hint of yeast and spices are noticed, lime lingers in the aftertaste. Slightly high in carbonation, but still pretty smooth going down.

I could drink this everyday and be pretty damn happy! Another excellent farmhouse brew from Stillwater!

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Photo of avalon07
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a muddy orange color and thick, cloudy consistency. There was a huge, foamy, long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A seriously spicy aroma. Traces of malt, citrus, and hops in there as well.

T: Tasted of basil, rosemary, lemon, malt, and a slight hoppiness. Heavy on the spices, but still complex. Reminds me of Saison du Buff in a big way.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a kind of slick finish. Medium-bodied.

D: I can see where some people wouldn't like this. It's a departure from most saisons and spice-laden. To me, it's complex, flavorful and drinkable.

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Photo of Zach136
4.34/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Hazy yellow orange, thin white cap and OK lacing.

Aroma: Medium+ pungent herbs. Lavender and chamomile up front. There are also some aromas reminiscent of lemon/hibiscus. not sure if that's the heather/dandelion or the hops/yeast. I don't know exactly what that stuff smells like. Whatever it is I like it. Also got some bready grain character.

Flavor: Pretty intense character of fruit, herbs and spice. Can't tell where the adjuncts, yeast, and hops begin and end. Sign of a world class saison IMO. Little to no hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied and fairly dry, but a bit of lingering sweetness keeping me from bumping it to a 4.5.

Overall: Another one knocked out of the park from Stillwater.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.32/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into Sam Adams sensory glass - another bottle from out Asheville way on our latest trip.

Pours an impenetrably murky deep, dark gold, dull and with no brightness whatsoever. Very nice 3-finger off-white head on top is fluffy, a bit creamy, leaving nice lacing as it recedes slowly to a thin cap. Body leaves a lot to be desired, but that could have been an overly aggressive pour to blame as well. Drank at around cellar temps.

Nose is interesting; light brettiness (bits of lemon and pineapple, wee bit of green apple skin, and a firmer-than-expected dose of barnyard) pairs with a lightly earthy yeast character with just a wee bit of sourdough poking through.

Taste is interesting. Bready, a bit sweet, bright citrus and some tropical fruits hit first, sourdough yeast from the nose, a bit musty, and then the floral notes hit from the flora additions. Very nice. A very light grassy presence on the finish is just barely there. Lightly earthy from the suspended yeast, I believe, while still maintaining that bright, zesty quality - the pineapple notes from the Brett really light this one on fire. Finish dries out nicely, again earthy, yeasty, floral, a bit musty and dank but still somehow bright and tropical.

Mouthfeel is smooth, full bodied, just a wee bit silky, very light carbonation, drying on the finish. Very nice. You can really tell this is unfiltered from the mouthfeel, in a very good way.

Drinkability is very good - no alcohol to really be found other than just a bit of warming in the stomach, and a beautifully put together beer overall.

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Photo of mverity
4.28/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is golden brown to tan in color, with a thick light tan head and above average lacing. Smell is sweet, earthy, and yeasty. Taste is fantastic: herbaceous, woody, with a roasted barley up front; leathery and tangy sweet; all while a honey/brown sugar/banana sweetness shines through. It seems to be too sweet at times, but the sweetness yields to an earthy/yeasty spiciness.

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Photo of humuloner22
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Solid beer in the style: I am sure there is better.

Appearance: Light hazy honey colored not much head at all.

Aroma: A little funk, some citrus aromas. I did not detect the lavender, some flora notes however. Decent saison.

Taste: Not as bad as you would expect some clove clean citrus tastes. Saison's are becoming my favorite style but this is not one of the better ones, however its better than most.

Overall: Its a solid beer not the best of the style but right down the middle.

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

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle into a large white wine glass.
Slightly hazy golden-orange color with a ridiculous 2" cream colored head. Settles to 1/2" with good retention. Leaves thick curtains of lacing.

Bright and inviting nose with fresh hay and grass, lots of floral notes, a nice herbal/medicinal note like a fancy cough drop, and bright, fresh lemon skin. There's an underlying citrus note, like fresh tangerines. Fades a bit as it warms, but still awesome.

The taste is understated compared to the nose, but still great. Comes on with wet hay and a soft, moist earthiness, followed by fresh orange flesh and strong floral notes, like chewing on a wet flower. A little minerality. There's something very "wet" about the whole taste, like rainwater. Ends with some grassiness and a slight hop presence, and there's a subtle gingery/herbal aftertaste. A little too subtle, but nuanced and complex.

I'm not sure what to make of the texture. It could use more carbonation, but as it is it lends a certain pleasant density to the whole "wetness" of the beer. I kinda want it to end cleaner and lighter as a saison, but it lingers pleasantly and moistly.

Another tasty and intricate beer from Stillwater. Delicate, complex, and unique, and they totally nailed that "essence of Spring" thing they were going for. My second favorite of theirs next to Cellar Door.

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Photo of andrewinski1
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip. The color is hazy and orange. Good foamy head that sticks around for a while. The lacing is only slightly sticky.

I am very excited by this aroma. There is a nice touch of spicy dank hops, followed by tons of floral aromas with a hint of orange. Just a touch of malt sweetness is evident. This is right up my alley.

This is really refreshing and tastes a lot like drinking a flower with some hops and a nice spicy yeast kick.

This is nice and light, with a subtly smooth carbonation. Very drinkable.

Well I am all in on Stillwater now. This has a very unique flavor, and it's very tasty.

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Photo of Pencible
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured a clear gold with moderate off-white head.
S: It smelled like cloves with coriander and potpourri, and a bit of earthy wheat and sour yeast.
T: It tasted like dry earthy wheat and sweet candi sugar and spicy cloves, with some potpourri and sour yeast. It had a very clean spicy aftertaste with a little bitterness.
M: It was thin with moderate carbonation. Very light.
D: This was a very tasty and refreshing beer that could be suitable for any season. Spicy taste is better for cold months, but light body is better for warm months. There was no alcohol noticeable, so it was super easy to drink. But the beer is interesting enough to warrant sipping and savoring, too. High quality saison. Impressive.

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Photo of petacutlasaurus
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Oh boy, found a bottle of this at the Village Pump and grabbed it as soon as I looked at it. Had with some lamb dinner and the pairing was pretty great. Pours a cloudy brown with minimal carbonation on the head, but you can taste it even if you can't see it. The smell is where I'm first grabbed, though. You can tell there's both something sweet and spicy in the drink - very pleasant. Those same notes are the foundation for an amazing taste. Stillwater's balanced that sweetness alongside that spice for a taste that develops really quickly in the mouth. The great thing about it is that these tastes come in a sequence, not all at once. And still better, I think I get the spice first, which makes the whole sweet ending even better. Loved the beer, can't wait to find more their import series or other small batches from them.

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

Poured with much foaming and commotion into a Nostradamus flute. Poured an odd cloudy golden orange amber. Bottle was a gusher and I lost a bit before I got it to the glass. Formed a quite nice two finger fine white head with lots of lacing and nice retention. Aroma of Belgian spicing, clove and cinnamon, light citrus, slightly mineral. Flavor is an unusual dry malt and light fruit with a complex herbal component, most noteably rosemary and other mint herbs. Flavor changes to light fruit then finishes with floral notes, a hint of ginger and somewhat dry. An unusual flavor combination that almost doesn’t work, but the flavor progression kept me interested and wanting to try it again. Medium bodied with a bit of creaminess. I liked this. I have found Stillwater beers to be unusual and somewhat challenging, but usually very enjoyable. I'm glad they make it out west and I will always try anything new from them.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.17/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer poured from an 11.2 ounce bottle into an oversized wine glass. Beer is amber to orange and hazy. Forms a thick head of small white bubbles that falls away but maintains a continuous coating on the surface of the beer. Head leaves some lacing on the glass. Looks pretty good.

Aroma is sweet and a little spicy. Perhaps some tea, some honey, some pepper, some earthiness hops, very interesting.

Beer is medium in body and quite spicy. Again I get some tea, earthiness and a little pepper. What part is the love and which part is the regret? Beer is quite creamy, its almost like a cask ale in a bottle. Very nice mouthfeel. Taste is complicated. Its not very bitter its mostly mildly sweet up front with this spiciness in the midpalate. Finishes a little dry but not too much. Its good. A fun and interesting beer.

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Photo of SLeffler27
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Develops an enormous, pale, orange sherbet foam that overwhelms the Saison DuPont pint glass before slowly transforming into a rocky texture and leaving patches of lace. Pours gem clear a brilliant, copper penny color with abundant, random, tiny bubbles of carbonation. Yeast was left in the bottle.

The aroma contains strong yeast and earthiness with lots of spice, light hops and a soft, caramel malt background.

Spicy. There are lots of varied spices including clove and coriander. Earthy following the nose but more bitter than anticipated. Pepper comes late as does sweetness. There is a long, spicy, dry finish.

A medium body with velvety texture and alcohol as expected. Carbonation is light and prickly. This one ends very dry.

With lots of character, Stillwater’s offering is easy to drink and helps one wind down. This could easily go well with pasta or game. It seems to me like what an imperial saison might taste like.

For the second pour I allowed the yeast into the glass and found it had little impact on the aroma and, while adding some fruitiness, it generally muted the flavors. Of Love and Regret is better if the yeast is left in the bottle.

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Photo of akorsak
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to yourefragile for this bottle.

A: The ale is an amber color that is highlighted by golden orange shades. The darkness is enough to obscure the ale, leaving it cloudy. Not much head, less than half a finger on pour.

S: Lots of cardamom and sage! The nose is so spice-laiden that it seems could pass for a gin profile. Pepper follows, along with mint, chamomile, and ginger. A whopper of an aroma that drips with Belgian yeasty-ness. As complex and varied as an aroma can come.

T: The taste can't possibly keep up with the nose. The melange of flavors, distinct scent-wise, are overtaken by the dense thickness of sage. A little of ginger and basil lie in the background but generally they hide behind cardamom. Pepper and musty yeast follow, along with light biscuity malts. The spiciness alone makes this beer rock.

M: The mouthfeel is Belgian, far bigger and zestier than most saisons. The sage aspect rings powerfully, not quite Cellar Door but a close second. Even a medicinal soapiness near the finish can't spoil the uniqueness of the ale.

D: Another winner from Stillwater. The saisons that this joint is pumping out are phenomenal. Spicy, complex, overpowering.

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Of Love & Regret (Import Series Vol. 1) from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
85 out of 100 based on 122 ratings.