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Premium - Stillwater Artisanal Ales

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

64 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 64
Hads: 184
Avg: 3.9
pDev: 23.33%
Wants: 18
Gots: 14 | 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
View: Beers (32) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 64 | Hads: 184
Photo of Sammy
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The farm smell is right there wafting through and after the pour. Really funky. Above average mouthfeel. Nothing exceptional taste wise, a little pepper, drinking of hay, but drinkable. Some rice as in saki, as in roast and toast rice. Worth a try for something different.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
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.

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Photo of metter98
3.96/5  rDev +1.5%
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.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.29/5  rDev +10%
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.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a lightly hazy looking yellow color. The head was white and a little on the fizzy side. The smell of the beer was made of mostly corn aromas and bready yeast. Smells very much like a very generic ale. The taste is sweet with some corn and grainy flavors. The mouthfeel was well carbonated with a decent body to it. Overall this beer was pretty good, I understand the style that was being attempted here and I think it's pretty good. I found this beer to be pretty refreshing actually.

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Photo of brentk56
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
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

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Churchkey. Served in a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a slightly-hazy straw color with a really nice white head and some good lacing on the way down. The nose brings a slight bit of grain along with some faint floral hops. Light earthy notes as well. The flavor has a nice grainy base along with good hop and yeast notes. The Brett shines through in the finish, which is quite dry. Light, crisp body. Really nice.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
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.

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Photo of zeff80
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a hazy, pale golden color with a one-finger, bubbly white head of foam. It left thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled very phenolic and funky with caramel notes.

T - Good funky flavor with a nice spicy bitter bite. Nice funkiness, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium bodied ale with a very dry finish.

O - This is a pretty tastier beer. It reminded me of a lighter version of Rayon Vert.

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Photo of oline73
3.46/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on-tap at Max's. Served in a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy yellow with a layer of off white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Light malt and a slight tartness. The overall smell is rather yeasty.

Taste: Light and slightly bitter. I'm picking up some herbal and yeast flavors, especially in the finish. Mild and rather refreshing.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: There is a ton of flavor in this beer given the abv. I thought it was interesting and would have more.

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Photo of nickfl
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with one and a half fingers of white foam on top of a hazy, straw colored body. The head sinks down slowly and leaves decent lace on the glass.

S - A slightly sulphury aroma of yeast, grainy malt, and earthy Brett.

T - Clean, earthy malt up front with notes of hay. The Brett comes out in the middle with notes of wet dirt and lemongrass. The beer finishes with lots of earthy hops and matching funky straw and dirt yeast character.

M - Medium body, high carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - Really interesting. The funky notes play perfectly with the earthy European hops and make for an odd but endearing little beer.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at ? (I think TJ's, Paoli, PA)

Not a bad beer for a style I'm not a huge fan of. Poured a light, golden yellow, pale and slightly hazy, with a small cap of white bubbles for a head; minimal retention and lacing. Aromas of pale malts, musty grass, and a distinctive Belgian yeast quality that puts this on the border of a saison (typical Stillwater fare). More of the same in the taste, bready pale malts, yeast, grass, light herbal hops. Light-medium body and quite good for the style.

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Photo of superspak
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
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.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 02/11/12 notes. Poured into a tulip.

a - Pours a murky yellow color with one inch of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of citrus, spice, Belgian style yeast, brett, and earthy notes. Lightly funky nose, pretty nice.

t - Tastes of pepper, Belgian yeast, spices, citrus hops, floral hops, earthy notes, grass. More pepper then the nose, a step down.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall a pretty nice beer from saison. Taste had a little too much pepper for me, but the nose was very nice. Would try it again.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Stillwater glass? You bet your ass that's what I did.

Beer is yellow and hazy with a nice white head, small and medium bubbles, some lacing, moderate lacing.

I guess I didn't realize until this point that this was a brett beer, big yeast character. Funky, a little esters / phenolic.

Beer is light in body and effervescent. A little dry finish, pretty bretty, Brett c or b character. Interesting. A pretty good beer I'd have it again.

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Photo of stakem
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bomber into a tulip. Thanks go to wishuwerebeer for the share. The brew appears a clouded golden yellow color with 2 fingers of frothy white head. Patchy to webby lace sticks to the glass. Rising bubbles maintain about a finger strength across the top.

The nose has a nice lemony snap of fruity aromatics. Somewhat tropical as it warme and opens up in the glass. Hints of pineapple blend into more of a wheat-like grain inclusion. It smells somewhat tart but with hints of sulfur and grass.

The taste is pale grain blending into a bit of wheat sweetness. There is a mild indication of saison yeast and a touch of clove, spice and sulfur. A bit of exaggerated lemony oil quality like coriander is mid-palate blending to grassy and earthy qualities. The finish goes back to the straw character with a bit of perfume-like lemon.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest to effervescent level of carbonation that is lightly prickly on the tongue. It is interestingly enjoyable at times but it does have some distractions that make the brew fall apart a bit as the experience continues. The blend of saison character and tropical hints was brilliant, the sulfur and oily lemon - not so much.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer appears a hazy, straw yellow hue with a lasting white head. The aroma is enticing, offering a bouquet of floral notes, citrus, earth, yeast, grass. The flavor has all of the aforementioned characteristics, as well as a pleasant spice character. The feel is smooth on the palate, finishing dry with a crisp hop character. Light bodied, easy to drink, complex, delicious. I would happily have this again. Recommended.

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Photo of smakawhat
2.72/5  rDev -30.3%
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.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
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.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a chalice)
Batch #1
A- This beer is just a bit of a gusher pouring a thick rocky white foam that takes up most of the glass. It slowly settles down to a slightly hazy bright yellow body with a violent carbonation of tiny bubbles.

S- The earthy wet rice and strong grapefruit aromas of brett give way to some pithy green notes in the finish that could be hops or brett. There is an interesting lavender soap hint that comes through as the beer opens.

T- The touch of malt sweetness is followed by grapefruit brett character and a full pungent pithy hops in the finish. The green grapefruit flavor lingers for a bit after the dry finish. As it opens up there are some hints of slightly over ripe fruit.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a gentle scrubbing fizz and compliments the hops nicely.

O- This beer really has a beautiful brett character that is full in the aroma with some nice bright flavors supporting it in the taste. There is a touch of tartness that grows and more depth comes with each glass.

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

Poured into a Black Raven imperial pint. Pours a slightly cloudy pale yellow amber. Healthy three finger head and active carbonation leaving chunks of foam on the side of the glass as it slowly dissipated. Looked great! Aromatic aroma of Belgian yeast and spicing, light fruit and citrus, slightly sour and funky. Flavor dominated by citrus, mostly lemon, and brett funk. Light grain and sweet malt. Astringently bitter finish, but supported by the fruit from the citrus. I'm not a big fan of brett, but I have to admit that the low level in this ale along with the refreshing lemon flavor was quite nice. Light to medium bodied. Not my style, but I enjoyed the whole bottle. Good job, Stillwater.

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Photo of Tone
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
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.

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Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 750 mL capped bottle; from the Wine Source. In a DuClaw snifter.

A: Light, pale, golden, and straw-like. The haze gives the ale a post Prohibition Belgian look, somewhere between a saison and a tripel. A white head, not much lacing, follows.

S: One thing you can always count on: Stillwater bringing the intense saison nose. This is no exception, musty and fruity with the brett adding a lively dirtiness. Pepper and lemons provide spicy heat. Smells very nice.

T: The brett brings depth to the ale, dirty and funky without acidic tartness. As the brett fades, the pale malts and and saison yeast kick in. The breadiness is soft; the saison is spicy. In particular, freshly cracked peppercorns, lemons, and pale candi sugars. The light malt brings a sweetness that comes through at the end of each sip. The brett sucks much of the moisture out of the ale, leaving it dry (but not jarringly so). The first glass was very bubbly, effervescent to the point of brut. It has since settled down but was worth noting.

M: The late-sip pairing of sweet malts, Belgian spices, and Brettanomyces is a game changer, sweet and funky and lively. Not quite a full-on saison, although it is this close {indicates mere millimeters with thumb and pointer finger}. The ale feels heavy though, perhaps my only significant complaint.

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
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

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Photo of corby112
3.09/5  rDev -20.8%
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.  

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Premium from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
87 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.