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A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2) - Stillwater Artisanal Ales

Not Rated.
A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2)A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2)

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

204 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 204
Reviews: 114
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.03%
Wants: 19
Gots: 16 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed at Huisbrouwerij Sint Canarus in Deinze-Gottem, Belgium with Dr. Canarus. This black saison carries qualities similar to a stout with light roast and burnt sugar flavors, spiced with Rose Hips, Hibiscus, & Schisandra berries.

(Beer added by: Thorpe429 on 11-13-2010)
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Ratings: 204 | Reviews: 114 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by BeerImmediately:
Photo of BeerImmediately


3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch #3, best before Oct 2013.

Pours with a booming, vicious but pretty dark-tan head comprised of the tiniest of bubbles. Body is an opaque, dark chocolate color. Very sticky lacing.

Aromas are full of tangy berries, with a backdrop of molasses and brown sugar. Yeast is strong.

Flavor is pretty wild. Raisins, bitter berries, rich dark chocolate (chocolate mousse pie), and some black licorice as it warms. Initial mouthfeel is crisp and effervescent, with the finish coming thru fairly sticky for a Saison. Very rich and filling.

Very much a dessert Saison, if there ever was one.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 18:02:51 | More by BeerImmediately
More User Reviews:
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3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

07-28-2014 12:26:19 | More by Schlafly33
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3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

07-28-2014 01:04:41 | More by Carl_R
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New York

3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

07-26-2014 00:30:42 | More by kingkevz
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4.24/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass. Bottled on 05/19/14.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown with a lot of bubbles. About two fingers of tan head that quickly fade into a thin patchy layer. Leaves some decent lacing.

Smell: A yeasty, spicy, and roasty dark Belgian style aroma with hints of chocolate and funk. Belgian yeast with some hints of clove, black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, and funk. Also some hints of the rose hips and berry. Dark roasted malt with hints of chocolate, dough, biscuit, caramel, toffee, grains, and straw. Dark fruit hints of cherry, grapes, raisin, and plum. Sweet hints of brown sugar. Also some subtle earthy and floral hops. A pretty solid and interesting aroma.

Taste: Like the smell, a spicy, yeasty, and roasty Belgian style taste with good notes of sweet chocolate and funk. Belgian yeast with some upfront notes of clove, black pepper, funk, cinnamon, and ginger giving a winter like spice taste. Subtle floral and fruity notes come through from the added berries and rose hips. Sweet dark roasted malt with notes of chocolate, cocoa, biscuit, dough, caramel, toffee, straw, and grains. Dark fruit notes of raisin, plum, grapes, and cherry. Background notes of earthy hops. A pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation. Spicy and somewhat prickly with a drying finish. Alcohol heat is minimal.

Overall: A pretty solid twist on a Belgian style Saison. Good mix of Belgian and winter like spices with some dark malt.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2014 07:50:21 | More by MattyG85
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3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

07-10-2014 06:37:43 | More by f_raud
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3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

07-07-2014 06:01:54 | More by Bpc24
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3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Resisting what the contemporary style makers try to prescribe about "farmhouse ale," Baltimore's Stillwater saison makers are tempting those modern notions with rustic, artistic and rudimentary tastes that show that these ales are so much more than a style- they are a culture.

A Saison Darkly pours with a dark rust color, equipped with a hazy amber to suggest depth and darkness. Yet not brown or black, its color even challenges what saison should be. And all that manifests in a toasty, peppery and dry grain aroma which is further backed by the dark fruit and hard candy sweetness that follow.

Flowing over the middle, its expressive carbonation bounces off the tongue carrying with it the taste of kettle-caramelized toffee and maple. With its bready wheat and malt underpinnings, a notion of french-toast with pepper and light char are easily understood. Heading toward finish, a tinge of grilled blackberry, red grape and black cherry suggest a winy tone.

Its dry and toasty finish does inherit a thin candied sweetness to balance its vinously tart alcohol tone. While pepper and char dance about its periphery, even they aid in the beer's overall drainable dryness. A quick finish that's indicative of wine trials with grilled plum and berry with recurring flare.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2014 05:15:32 | More by BEERchitect
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3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

07-05-2014 00:25:15 | More by crbnfbr
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4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

07-03-2014 23:36:45 | More by LightnerLiquorKS
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4.25/5  rDev +9%

06-28-2014 03:41:27 | More by meanmutt
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3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear deep brown with garnet highlights and a frothy khaki head that dissipates to nothing.

Initial aroma is bubblegum, chocolate, and flowers. I get the rose hips, but hibiscus is a stretch. There's a bit of funk.

One of the drier saisons I can recall, likely accentuated by dark malt. More bubblegum, a little funk, floral notes, and a light tartness. Mint emerges late.

Body is moderate, with moderate carbonation and noted alcohol warmth.

I like the sour notes and funk, but that dark malt doesn't jive well for me as it warms. One of few beers I'd advise drinking on the cold side. Very intriguing.

Serving type: on-tap

06-25-2014 21:18:52 | More by barczar
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4/5  rDev +2.6%

06-24-2014 19:29:12 | More by seanchai
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4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

06-22-2014 01:42:28 | More by elec
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North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

06-21-2014 02:15:37 | More by fehrminator
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South Dakota

4.75/5  rDev +21.8%

06-20-2014 03:29:50 | More by mrjbrown27
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New York

3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

05-14-2014 19:54:12 | More by Dirtinabottle
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South Carolina

4/5  rDev +2.6%

05-10-2014 15:58:00 | More by henryclay_
Photo of woemad


3.74/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12.7oz/375mL bottle purchased at the Total Wine on the northside of Spokane. I forget what I paid for it. Unlike the example pictured on Beer Advocate, this bottle's label does not feature a batch number or any boilerplate about it being part of an "Import Series," but does state that this was “brewed & bottled by Twelve Percent, Westminster, MD.”

Poured a dark brown color that looked black once it was settled in a St. Bernardus glass. Big, creamy light tan head that stuck around for a while. A goodly amount of sticky lace was left on the sides of the glass.

Aroma was of raisin-like dark fruits, initially. As it warmed, some fruity esters and a muted spiciness reminiscent of a Belgian yeast made their presence known, but it seemed a bit low key.

The taste starts out with some dark fruit flavors, but are quickly mated to a modest, dry grassiness and some low intensity cocoa notes that increase in the fadeout. There’s also some fruity flavors floating about in the background that remind me of pears and Granny Smith apples.

Good carbonation, but a little too full-bodied for the style, in my humble opinion – but not to a crippling degree. Mouthfeel is where so many ersatz Belgians come up short, and this is no exception.

This is an interesting “dark” saison – my second of this unofficial style (the other being Selkirk Abby’s St. Thomas), and it’s more fruity and full bodied, but I think it loses a little in drinkability. I can’t see myself having more than one, though at 8% abv, that’s probably a good thing. At the right price I would drink this again.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2014 22:48:09 | More by woemad
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3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

03-21-2014 06:21:44 | More by zestar
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4.25/5  rDev +9%

03-21-2014 00:31:13 | More by Bunuelian
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4/5  rDev +2.6%

03-04-2014 20:13:59 | More by ToddHolder
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2.25/5  rDev -42.3%

02-24-2014 22:30:56 | More by Eighty
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3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

02-24-2014 04:33:53 | More by Kurmaraja
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4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Very Dark, I could barely see light through it. 1 finger of head lasted for 45 minutes

Smell: Dried fruits maybe a little musty wood

Taste: Nice dark ale flavor not too sour on the palate, but still noticeable.

Mouthfeel: smooth, and very easy to drink

Overall: A very good Saison that I hope my store has more of. I will definitely pick up a couple more.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2014 05:14:03 | More by WhiskeyMax
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A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2) from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
87 out of 100 based on 204 ratings.