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very good

183 Ratings
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Ratings: 183
Reviews: 64
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 13.95%
Wants: 18
Gots: 13 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 01-10-2012

A ’Post Prohibition’ style ale brewed with Pilsner malt, corn, and rice. Hopped at 2lbs per BBL with Cluster, Northern Brewer, and Saaz and fermented with a farmhouse ale yeast and 2 strains of brettanomyces to weigh in at 4.5% ABV.

Batch 1 750ml
Batch 2 22oz
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Ratings: 183 | Reviews: 64
Photo of beergoot
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very hazy, light straw colored body; thick, fluffy, white head. Spicy, peppery aroma; cut wet grass; lemons. Taste mimics the aroma; tart and acidic; powdery yeast notes. Soft, medium bodied; dry finish.

There was non-stop oozing foam upon opening the bottle, yet once the contents settled down, the beer proved decent and enjoyable. The looks, flavor, and aroma are more inline with a farmhouse/saison styling than an all-malt grain ale. Regardless of its classification, this brew is worth a try.

Photo of babaracas
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Considering this a brett-ed saison brewed with corn and rice. Pours a cloudy straw color, billowing soapy whit head, settles slowly to a half inch; sheet of thick lace down the glass. Smell: floral, hay, lemony and spicy, moderate amount of barnyard bouquet, hint of dough I'm the back. Taste: lemon, pineapple note, grainy...breakfast cereal, sugar cookie note, into a dry finish highlighting a big spicy and somewhat rindy hopping. This drinks light and refreshing, but the carbonation is really dialed in well to provide heft and lasting power at lower grav. Really well done...the brett adds a lot to all aspects of the beer vs Classique.

Photo of Etan
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Funny I haven't review this yet. Bomber into a willi becher.

A: Pours clear, light dull straw with a spongy white head. Certainly looks like a relatively unimpressive blonde ale.

S: Aroma is musty, yeast, bit of lime and chalk, fresh grain.

T: Lots of dry brett in the taste, with some must and very light citrus acidity, sawdust, nice wave of euro-hop bitterness at the end, biscuit.

M: Light-bodied and quaffable.

O: Sort of an odd beer between the brett and the Saaz, but ultimately quite enjoyable and preferable to "clean" blonde ales.

Photo of superspak
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours moderately hazy golden straw color with a 2 finger dense and rocky white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of tart lemon zest, pear, apple, cracker, bread, hay, straw, grass, herbal, clove, black pepper, musty funk, and herbal/yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/funky yeast, pale malt, and earthy hop notes; with solid strength. Taste of lightly tart lemon, pear, apple, cracker, bread, clove, black pepper, hay, straw, grass, herbal, musty funk, and herbal/yeast earthiness. Light earthy tartness and moderate yeast/hop spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of lightly tart lemon zest, pear, apple, cracker, bread, clove, black pepper, hay, straw, grass, herbal, musty funk, and herbal/yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity and balance of fruity/funky yeast, pale malt, and earthy hop flavors; with a great crisp malt/yeast/hop balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and light-medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and lightly prickly mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with zero warming present after the finish as expected of 4.5%. Overall this is a very nice saison style. All around good complexity and balance of fruity/funky yeast, pale malt, and earthy hop flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.29/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

this is the best thing I've had from stillwater in ages, its just fantastic beer, perfect for summer, and a nice alternative to a berliner weisse, but does many of the same things. made with corn and rice, clever grain bill to go with the wheat in here. hazy and blonde, extremely creamy, and leaving gorgeous ring lacing as i sip it down, and the head never settles at all, staying a few inches high and super airy in the glass. a nose of subtle brett, a couple of strains were used in this, along with a saison yeast strain that i taste a lot more than i smell. the taste is awesome, appreciable grain character to this, starchy just a little from the rice i assume, and really full bodied. the corn may contribute to some mid palate sweetness, but trio of yeasts clean up any and all residual sugar in the very dry finish. this is the more elegant and refined side of brett fermentation, not heavy on the funk at all, just a little more tart and interesting than a normal farmhouse strain, but it brings the best out of the unique grain bill. tasty and original beer here, low in alcohol and very effervescent, which makes it a bottle i wish i have five or six of to drink in a session instead of just sharing one. stillwater needs to keep going in this direction, its fabulous beer. love the full feel to it, the drinkability, and the yeast complexion. top tier offering here at a fair price.

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a shaker pint, the beer is a bright, crystal clear, honey-yellow coloring with a ton of carbonation throughout and a tall, foamy, frothy, bright white head. Aromas of toasted grains, floral highlights, buttered bread, cut grass, and subtle hints of honey and cracker. Flavors are grassy up front, with hints of evergreen and honey, on a cracker backbone. Effervesced and light body, with a roasted and toasted character towards the end of the palate. The aftertaste is more of the toasty and grainy characteristics, with hints of sweetness. The finish is frothy and effervesced, with a lingering grassy and tangy sweet character. Different take on the style, and definitely refreshing on a hot day.

Photo of Axnjxn
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a snifter.

light straw color..huge, huge head. horizontal pour required. smell is massively dry..may have fallen off. taste is terrific, dry with a great lemon kick. ooh! mild body, high carbonation.

overall great! very recommended

Photo of corby112
3.09/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Batch 2

Pours a hazy bright golden yellow color with a one finger white head that quickly settles into a lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Funky sulfuric aroma with hints of egg salad and fart along with musty bugs and light fruit.  The sulfuric presence is really strong and pretty unpleasant but there is a musty, earthy brett presence and light fruit esters balancing things out.  Subtle grainy adjunct presence as well.  

Slightly funky but light bodied and much easier to drink than anticipated.  Dry and earthy with subtle wood and sulfur along with funky bugs and light fruit notes. Decent dry brett presence with a touch of sulfuric funk followed by grainy adjuncts as well as some apple and pear sweetness.  

Photo of GPHarris
3.37/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a - opens with a bang as we have a slight gusher though not much beer was lost. poured a three-fingers thick, fluffy, eggshell-colored head into a tulip glass that left a bright and bubbly golden color. good sheeting and lacing throughout.
s - floral hops with some lemon citrus aromas.
t - lemon tartness, biscuity, grainy, herbal.
m - prickly and bubbly from lively carbonation.
o - decent beer but a little boring and overly carbonated.

Photo of smakawhat
2.72/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Poured from the bottle into a wine like snifter glass. Much thanks to Lea and the DC bottle share gang.

A real nice pale lemon body, even throughout, with a thin foamy off white head that is quite bright in appearance. Looks more like a saison.

Nose hits with a huge reeking sense. Hops and must and yeasty stanky quality. Dirt. Burnt leaves and herbs. Must. Mulch. Compost. Farmhouse gone overboard, quite off putting for me.

First sip is quite bitter on the palate. Huge notes of flowery and garden earth qualities. Fairly noticeable peppery finish hinting at farmhouse yeast components, but also with a tin metal box tinny aftertaste to match. Sharp. Jarring. Qualitiy aromatics and flavors but overkilled.

Overall the brew feels incredibly unbalanced and too out of kilter on the funky sense. This isn't for me, this feels like it went for broke and burned everything in it's path to get there.

Photo of FondueVoodoo
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a hazy almost milky pale straw with massive pillowy head. Almost immediately it begins to crater and lump up with giant soapy bubbles and leave lacing trailing around the glass.

S: Wheaty biscuits with wet hay and funky bretta. Lemony tartness and a solid wet leather finish.

T: Round kick of bretta straight to the mouth. No mistaking it for another style. Ripe bananas are detectable with wet horse blanket, pithy lemons and limes and wheaty chewiness. Forward on the funk meter and not for the faint of heart.

M: Snappy carbonation with a light dry and sour mouthfeel.

O: This beer feels true to the claim of being styled in prohibition times given its cloudy unfiltered, almost milky appearance. Its sour wild taste and smell is raw and upfront. Worth given it a try should you find it in your area.

Photo of Tone
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber color. 2/3 inch head of a white color. Good retention and great lacing. Smells of grapes, hops, yeast, hint of floral, hint of grass, and a hint of sweet malt. Fits the style of an American Blonde Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and thick, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of slight alcohol, grapes, slight grass, hint of yeast, slight floral, and a hint of sweet malt. Overall, good appearance, decent aroma, feel, and blend.

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Pours pale straw with a large head.
Nose shows funky, goaty Brett, soft lemon, light malt, grassy cow shit. Smells like a bloody farm. Intriguing.
Some of the farm characters transfer through as flavours, along with dry saison notes and grainy malt.
Massively high carbonation.
This one grew on me, despite the cow shit.

Photo of ADZA
3.63/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours the lightest hazy blonde hue I've ever seen borderlining urine colour with a fluffy three finger head and clingy lacing everywhere,the smell is sweaty socks,funk,citrus and lemon sherbet,the mouthfeel is lightbodied and well carbonated with tastes of lemon sherbet,mandarins,the slightest touch of funk and i mean slight just enough to make itself known and finished with a thirst quenching herbal fruity dryness and overall not bad and nice for when you want a tasty thirst quenching beer without too much going on it cheers.

Photo of biboergosum
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. More ornate, withered Victorian manuscript label imagery, very 'artisanal'.

This beer pours a very, very, very pale cloudy, almost white straw 'colour', with a tumultuous rising mass of thinly foamy, whipped cream head, which leaves broad swaths of chunky, splattered fuzzy lace around the glass as it genially abates. It is blonde, in the American sense, this much is certain.

It smells of funky, sort of cheesy yeast, a sour lemon and cherry fruitiness, grainy pale malt, soft earthy spice, and a sassy grassy hoppiness. The taste is tart lemon and mild white vinegar, a paler Brett funkiness than that of the nose (but still kickin' it), gritty pale malt, a touch of cornmeal, some understated black pepper mill detritus, and still prominent wet hay and grassy hops.

The carbonation is obviously quite the showman up front, and mostly keeps at it with a sharp, sometimes fizzy nature, the body medium-light in weight, maybe a smidgeon thin, but generally smooth for such a hoppy, modulated acidic brew. It finishes off-dry, the sweetness of the rice/corn kind of shouldering its way in, while the bitter hops and sour/funky combo just sit back and smirk.

A tasty enough pale wild ale, I don't quite grok the insistence on placing this in the Blonde Ale classification, even if said category, as a whole, is loosey-goosey at best. So a few niggling points off for that. And did pre-WWII beers in America really rely on wild yeast and bacteria for their fermentation? Maybe I've got some further reading up to do.

Photo of brentk56
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Batch 1

Apppearance: Quite the gusher indeed but after cleaning up the mess, the beer poured a cloudy honey color with a beaten egg white head that left multiple strands of lace

Smell: Vague hints of lemon and chalk with undertones of an adjunct lager (more rice than corn)

Taste: Starts out chalky dry, with lemon pound cake undertones; in the middle, there is a vanilla and pepper character that contrasts with the rice flavors; the rice actually adds a bit of sweet rice pudding to the malt profile as the beer settles into the finish

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: Intriguing and probably a bit better fresh, this is still a nice example of what Brett can do to the American Blonde style to make it interesting and appealing

Photo of srhoadsy
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured chilled into a fluted tulip.

Blonde is beautiful. This beer pours an amazing light blonde color with an inch plus of white airy head that slowly recedes leaving a moderate surface layer and moderate to heavy lacing.

Strong aromas of lemongrass and spice.

Taste follows through the aromas with a lot of sourness and funk from the yeast. Very complex; sour, sweet and musty all at the same time.

Light to medium bodied with crisp, dry finish and moderat to heavy carbonation. Lingering aftertaste.

Overall a great looking beer that may have been just a touch to funky for me. Would definitely like to try again and reassess the flavor profile.

Photo of ToasterChef
4.21/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A cold 22oz bottle is poured into a pint glass.

A straw colored liquid fills my glass. It is ever so slightly hazy with plenty of tiny bubbles rising within. The head is made up of white foam and it fills the top quarter of my glass. As it recedes some lacing is left behind.

The beer has a funky brett aroma. Grassy hops are also present. I could smell the corn and rice while pouring the beer—at least I thought I could—but once I hold the beer close to my nose I am not smelling either of those adjuncts.

The beer has a great farmhouse taste. The brett adds some sourness, but this isn't a puckering beer. Its subtle but noticeable and works very well with the grassy hops and light malt sweetness.

The beer has a medium body and is rather fizzy. A wet coat is left behind inside my mouth. It holds onto some of the malt flavors. My lips are left a touch sticky.

I like this beer. It is incredibly easy drinking and has some wonderful sour characteristics. It isn't exactly what I would reach for if I was in the mood for an adjunct lager (which is rare), but it is what I would grab if I wanted a fancier lawnmower beer. It is recommended.

Photo of metter98
3.96/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is clear light straw yellow in color and has a moderate to high amount of carbonation. It poured with a two finger high bright white head that took a very long time to die down but never completely faded away, consistently leaving a thin head covering the surface as well as lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: The Brettanomyces yeast imparts light amounts of sourness to the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste is a little sour and also has notes of lemon citrus and grassy hops. Hints of peppery spices are noticeable in the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and a little clean on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This would make for a really easy to drink beer for someone that is just getting into sour beers because the brett is not overdone. I really liked how the brewer used a little sourness to make a beer brewed with adjunct malts that doesn't taste bland. It's extremely drinkable given its low alcohol content.

Photo of shand
4.01/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was really excited to pop this beer open, because I honestly had no idea what to expect from it. Stillwater Premium pours out a pale golden yellow color with a large white head. The aroma, at first, smells like an adjunct lager with maybe a touch more bright citrus. As either the beer warms or I get closer into the glass, more subtle aromas come out. The musty aspects from the Brett start to take over, as well as a bit of spicy/earthy hops. The taste is, again, really interesting. It has the clean, crisp, and citrusy lager taste there, but it's subverted by a heavy amount of very musty funkiness that cuts right through the lager base like a knife. The Brett funkiness has a fun time interacting with the citrus and hops in the beer. I don't know how to really describe the feeling of the funk hitting in this beer - it almost feels like the mouthfeel gets thicker when the funk comes rolling through, even though it obviously doesn't. It's probably due to a strong dryness from the Brett that fights against the crisp, bright, and light lager base. Premium might not be a beer that completely succeeds on all levels, but it's interesting enough that I can't help but recommend it.

Photo of russwbeck
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 2

A: Bubbly, bright yellow color with a huge white head. The head lasts forever and is bolstered by a furry of bubbles. What does recede sticks heartily to the side of my glass. A significant amount of yeast is resting at the bottom of the bottle, which I poured into a different glass. 4

S: It smells really interesting. Wheaty, lemon, light, and, of course, the Brett. It really takes over the entire aroma. Musty and citrusy, the smell without the Brett would probably be off-putting. 4

T: The taste, amazingly, not only packs a Brett punch but an array of fruits as well. The lemons and oranges honestly take the Brett and wheatiness over and make you almost forget it's there. The finish is slight sour, but more like a saison funk and not an American Wild Ale hit. 4.5

MF: Light, crisp and absurdly drinkable. I wish all "Premium" beers tasted like this beaut. 5

O: Took a chance on this weird beer and was absolutely rewarded. I'm really starting to get hooked on what Stillwater is doing, looking forward to the next time I come across them. 4.5

Photo of Jimmys
4.39/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bomber into NY Giants pint glass. assuming batch #2 since it is a bomber bottle. little disappointed by the fill height on this bottle...

A: almost a fake looking gold hue with how bright this pours. looks very much like a light lager in my pint glass. bright white head is frothy and has reasonable head retention.

S: barny. earthy. horse. eggy. sulfur. smells rustic, if that makes any sense. struggling to find any hop aroma. the aroma seems to be dominated by brett aspects.

T: starts watery, not much to it. acidic dryness puts a twang to the flavor. finish has a corny linger, but is also pretty dry.

M: a sizeable carbonation. works well with the barny flavors and the light body.

D: a pretty unique brew. highly quaffable as the Brett dries things out. I would enjoy this in a smaller serving vessel as it would make for some solid session beer.

Photo of jrenihan
3.28/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer is cloudy golden in colour, very light. Looks rather like a wit. Good-sized white head, fades steadily leaving a good amount of lace.

Smell is dominated by brett. Quite funky, barnyardy. A bit of a cheesy scent. Some grain. I like brett but the scent is not the best.

Like the nose, the brett is quite strong. Other than that, the taste is very thin. Very funky with a cheese flavour. I get almost nothing other than brett.

Beer is very thin, very light-bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Overall, disappointing. It just tastes like the brett was added to a tasteless beer. Meh.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Half finger head wit excellent lacing in a cloudy banana yellow body. Aroma of clove, Belgian yeast, garbage and lemon. Flavor has a lot of corriander and clove with Belgian yeast funk and light lemon custard sweetness. Moderate carbonation and light to medium body. Lots of Belgian yeast and funk character. Drinkable but comes across very simpe. Not overly dry.

Photo of BeerKangaroo
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Into a pint glass:

A: light golden-yellow colored body with a two finger frothy white head. The head fades into some valleys and leaves some nice lacing around the sides of the pint glass. Lots of carbonation is seen rising through the body

S: mixture of corn, citrus hops, lemon peel with some pepper in the background

T: peppery tartness up front making a bittery/zestiness with a good pop on the taste buds.

M: light to medium with a good balance between wet and dry. There's some harshness on the tongue, but its expected due to the style. I would say this is very drinkable.

O: though this is my first one by Stillwater, I would say I'm mostly pleased, but would fault myself for having this one this time of year because I think this one would probably show its aspects better in the warmer months of the year. I'll be looking for it next summer. Though, I will say its nice to see this in Maine.

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Premium from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
86 out of 100 based on 183 ratings.