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Grassroots Arctic Saison - Grassroots Brewing

Not Rated.
Grassroots Arctic SaisonGrassroots Arctic Saison

Educational use only; do not reuse.

99 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 99
Hads: 734
Avg: 4.1
pDev: 23.41%
Wants: 26
Gots: 142 | FT: 19
Brewed by:
Grassroots Brewing
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale | 6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: N17shelfside on 07-17-2013

This ale embodies the spirit of perpetual creative collaboration in conjunction with disciplined brewing endeavor.

We trekked to Alaska and helped craft this rustic Saison, bringing with us the essence and imagination of our Vermont Farmstead family.

Brewed and Bottled by Anchorage Brewing Company, Anchorage, Alaska
View: Beers (8) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 99 | Hads: 734
Photo of magictacosinus
4.41/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This was one of the many beers poured at the December Albany Taproom bottle share. I brought this bottle, at the time about 6 months old. I heard it wasn't very stellar (for what it's supposed to be) fresh so I laid it down to let the Brett hopefully work its magic. Poured out of a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a cloudy amber pale color - it's crazy how much this beer has apparently cleared up in the past half year from a vibrant golden amber to a pale, nearly milky looking amber. The head is definitely stellar, as always with anything funky from Anchorage. Leaves behind some good sticky lacing at the sides of the glass, and retains a rustic, proper presentation overall. Well done.

As for the aroma? Magnificent! I'm amazed at what I was whiffing at through and through. Ever wanted to see what Brett can do at its full potential? Check this out: huge tropical notes of kiwi, lychee, mango, and passion fruit burst out of the glass, followed by perfumed notes of lavender and violets, as well as a tinge of green pepper, white peppercorns, slight toasted leathery notes, and a little bit of leafy, tobacco filled phenols. Finishes with strong citrus notes, mainly of tangerines, as well as pears, green apple, pine and cloves. Contains a funky, wet barnyard aroma that takes me straight to a farm. Amazingly refreshing, vibrant, warm stuff. Smells crisp as any good saison should - truly an achievement as far farmhouse ales tend to go.

The flavor is not as mind blowing as the aroma, but it's definitely in a strong league, for what it's worth. The citrus notes are far more up front than the tropical notes, but it's definitely refreshing - and, combined with the pear and green apple notes from the yeast, it manages to be a dry, fruity, crisp saison as good as any top quality one you can get in Belgium (in this case, I'm thinking of d'Erpe-Mere). Nice white pepper, baking soda, wet hay, and slight lactic funk at the finish. Leathery, toasted, and very floral, with a lot of the lavender shining through. Finishes dry, but with a refreshing crisp bready flavor that melds well with the earthiness from the yeast, as well as the crisp flavor. Carbonation is effervescent like a good sparkling wine, and allows a lot of the more gentle flavors to pass through against the funk. Very easy to drink - and by far my favorite beer of the night.

Can Anchorage and Hill Farmstead brew this again?? Maybe make it year round? This lays down terrifically well, and is totally worth the $18 price tag I paid for. This is a prime example of how farmhouse beers in America are only getting better, and when everything is done properly towards a beer's profile, the addition of Brett only makes everything more complex, rustic, and unique. I really wish I had another bottle to see how it's progressing, but I honestly think the sweet spot is 6-8 months. Terrific, wonderful stuff. Really exceeded my expectations in many ways.

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this. (Cheers to myself for giving it to him as a gift.)

Appearance: Hazy, golden orange - pours with a huge, fluffy, white head - fades to a small but mostly solid cap - leaves streaks and blobs of lacing - decidedly pretty

Smell: So, so funky - an abundance of Brett - powdery and juicy Brett - lots of barnyard aroma as well as some musty cellar - some spiciness and some grass - some light fruits like pears and green apples - some pale malts and some spicy wheat - some perfume, hay, and citrus - quite a variety of saison aromas

Taste: Funky and potent - pungent even for a saison - funky flavors, with some barnyard, some musty cellar, hay - loads of and loads of Brett - straight-up, powdery Brett - some touches of citrus, but mostly other light fruits like ripe pear and green apple - fruity and funky - some nice sweetness balanced by some yeasty dryness

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nicely carbonated, juicy funk but finishes dry

Overall: Slightly less icy than something I'd expect from the arctic

I had high hopes for this beer. And the beer exceeded my expectations. This is remarkably flavorful, with a ridiculous amount of Brett , and an above-average amount of funk. I need to buy more of this.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Thanks to angrybabboon for the bottle.

Appearance: Hazy yellow-gold. Head starts off a massive pillowy bright-white. Clumps of lacing. Decent retention leaves a 1cm clumpy white head that persists for the duration. Cork popped off with crazy force leading tons big bubbly carbonation.

Smell: Anchorage yeast right up front. Some banana coupled with peach and mango. Very fruity. Damp yeast. Some grass and wheat and musty basement. A touch floral. Nice slightly bready malts with a clean pale malt sweetness. A touch of undercooked bread. Yeast and soft eatery spice. A touch of clove. Light and clean. Warming adds some light powdery yeast elements. A touch of rose petal and apricot.

Taste: Soft Belgian influence complete with overripe banana and slightly spicy clove. Fruity esters abound. Pale slightly breast malt. Lightly sweet. Some push of something like wheat. Floral as well. Musty and earthy in good measure. Warming rounds out some of the esters, but jumps the yeast profile up a few notches. Apricot, peach, mango and some pear and apple. A lot of fruity esters. Rosemary and rose petal. Hay and grass. A touch of caramelized malt. Yeasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Nice and smooth with a touch of creaminess. Moderate pushing toward high carbonation. Slightly crisp up front.

Overall: Best served above freezing.

A damn fine saison. The yeast runs a bit heavy on the Belgian influence, but everything else is spot on.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml into tulip glass.

A: Pours a lightly cloudy straw color with a huge, billowing , frothy, bright white head that slowly faded into a very fuzzy thick film that left a thick sheet of sticky lace down the glass.
S: Huge notes of Brett dominate with earthy and spicy scents, followed by strong herbal and slight stone fruit, peach, mild lemon zest. Super Brett overall.
T: Follows the nose but sweeter and fruitier. Brett still dominates earthy and musty, hints of straw. Fruit is sweet, peachy and apricoty. Lemon juice comes through in the finish with a mild tartness. Brett kicks up some mild funk in the aftertaste. Slight chalk and citrus pith in the aftertaste alongside juicy fruit nectar.
M: Full body, thick and fluffy mouthfeel, with soft carbonation, mild dryness, faint acidity, solid sweetness, and creamy carbonation.
O: Drinks very well, great Brett forward flavor, sweet fruit, herbal hop, spice and earthy must. Can definitely tell this was made at Anchorage. Very very good.

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Photo of jbaker67
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy golden body with a huge, white head. Aroma of brett , lacquer, musty basement, citrus, cracker, lemon, apricot. The flavor is moderately sweet and lightly to moderately bitter. It finishes lightly sweet and lightly to moderately bitter. Medium body, watery/velvety texture, lively carbonation. Dry finish. Crisp on the tongue. Taste of mustiness and pineapple with notes of lemon and grapefruit.

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Photo of cpetrone84
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour is hazy pale yellow with a tight white head and thick lacing. Nose has a strong lemon characteristic with some subtle pepper and balanced farmhouse yeast with some earthy qualities. Taste also leans a bit to the lemon side surrounding the palate. The farmhouse yeast of earthy mushroom and pepper comes in mid palate and plays through the back. Strong carbonation and a clean crisp body with a dry finish make this very palatable. The Brett presence really doesn't adds much but plays in with the citrus and earthy notes.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.53/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This one is right up there with Boulevard Saison-Brett and Logsdon Seizoen Bretta for me. Wonderful use of oak and brett. The mouthfeel is fantastic and completely effervescent. You get lemons, fruit juice, and straw on the nose and in the taste. So easy to drink and completely delicious. Way too underrated.

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Photo of concealed
3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Great Beer. Perfect on a cold New England night, that feels like the Arctic. Thanks to IndyDad for throwing this in a trade.

Overall this beer is a very Bretty Saison, and it follows all of the stereotypes you would imagine.

Appears quite attractive, lots of foam and creates excellent lacing. Opaque.

Smells like pears, fruits, brett

tastes pretty tart, but not as much funk as I expected. some fruits like green apple, lemon peel, and also a peppery yeasty farmhouse taste

overall it is a great winter saison

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Photo of bahnfire
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle to HF stemware

A: Pours an opaque golden honey color, fluffy 2-3 finger head that settles to a fine film on top of the beers surface.

S: Brett, followed by more brett, then some pear. Possibly other fruits.

T: Brett up front. No big surprise there. Followed by bready yeast, maybe what some folks would call biscuity, and normal saison flavors. I heard the recipe for this was basically Arthur with brett, I could be wrong. But I don't think Arthur when I taste this.

M: Medium body, perfect carbonation. Leaves your mouth feeling wet, whereas I find most HF saisons considerably more dry.

O: A good example of a brett forward saison. Right there with Saison Brett IMO. And like Saison Brett I think a year in the bottle will do wonders for it. Going to pick up another bottle to put some age on.

Convivial Suarez and Brother Soigne were home runs out of the box (bottle?). Arctic Saison will take some time to develop into the best version of itself.

UPDATED 12/4/13: Opened another bottle now that it has been developing for a few months. Like I thought, this is considerably better now. I can recommend this beer now with a straight face.

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Photo of Monkeyknife
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a cloudy yellow-gold color with two fingers of rich and creamy white head. Generous lacing left behind.

Aroma of lemon peel, coriander, earthy funk, Belgian yeast, and white pepper.

The taste was tart with green apple, lemon peel, cherry, brett, and Belgian yeast.

Medium bodied and very dry with a moderate carbonation.

I highly recommend this one. Delicious and interesting.

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Photo of Roguer
4.39/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pale lemon yellow brew, hinting of straw, slightly cloudy but still somewhat translucent. Small-ish white head with good retention and lacing.

Smell is of lemongrass, mild Brett, bright hops, and wheat.

Taste follows the nose: slightly sour, fairly dry, and barely sweet. A tiny bit sour, a little bit of funk. Beyond that, some perfectly balanced bright hops, lemon, and wheat. Fantastic; I can't wait to try this beer with some age (although I suppose waiting is quite literally the only option).

Medium feel, almost silky, quite cloying, with a decent carbonation sting and dry finish. Very drinkable; just enough sting to make you take a little bit of time.

This is a fantastic saison; the balance of the earthy wheat tones, the bright lemony hops, and the yeast all come together in a subtle yet complex package that is eminently drinkable (and at 6%, it really is). I will try this one again in a year or two and see if the Brett development makes it even more interesting.

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Photo of TheCuriograph
4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a couple bottles on our trip to Vermont. Generally like brett-fermented beers and saisons. Loved everything from Hill Farmstead I've had. What's not to be excited about?

A - Opaque straw blond with a voluptuous foamy head that sticks around. Pretty little pour.

S - Gueuze-y overtones. I'm talking white wine vinegar, green apple, barnyard funk, wet grass. Also, some softer notes like cornhusks and sourdough. More subdued than a lambic, more sour than a saison.

T - That's compelling. The first notes are sweet and playful: rosewater and wheat. Then comes the sour grape and apple. This throbbing farmhouse melange slinks off to a pleasantly ashy aftertaste. The corny, biscuity saison quality is contending with the funk. This is wilder than, say, Crooked Stave Surette. Still, nicely balances.

M - Medium. Sticky but effervescent.

O - Rich and bold, but still well rounded and a pleasant easy drink. Everything is well integrated now, so I wonder how it will develop over time.

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Photo of StaveHooks
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle served in a Duvel tulip
Batch-1 May 2013

A - This beer is cloudy with a golden pale color, a massive rocky white head slowly settles with cavernous mounds of bubbles. Sloppy wet lacing sinks down the sides of the glass.

S - Grain dust, earthy hay, grainy pilsner malts, lemons and minerals, the yeast is tangy and bready with a very mild funk and timid white pepper phenolics. Mushrooms come out once it warms up.

T - Tangy lemons, mineral soda water, slightly acidic, the dusty hay and grassiness fade quickly as it warms. Bright tropical fruits work well against the grainy pale malt. Lemony tang really comes around on the backend along with a floral/herbal bitterness finishing crisp and clean.

M - Active seltzer-like carbonation, light body, crisp and clean.

Bright, dry, and very refreshing. A very nice Saison indeed. Extremely crisp with mineral water and tangy lemon taking the stage. I am thoroughly enjoying this beer on a brisk 28 degree November night.

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Photo of Gatch
4.56/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch # 1 May/2013 Picked up at Meulemans' Craft Draughts in Rawsonville (Jamaica), Vermont!

We have an extreme gusher here! Cork came off way too easily and then the bottle proceeded to spew foam and beer everywhere. Literally. Lost about a third of the liquid. I didn't make things better by trying to stop it with my hand which pressurized it and shot it even further in all directions. Kind of upset but what can ya do? Still turned out to be a great beer.

A: Super hazy, beautiful golden-orange-yellow with a massive, bubbly, fluffy, bright white head leaving behind lots of lace and retention. As the style should be!

S: Heavy on the yeast, funk, hay, barnyard, tart fruit, a bit of booze, and some faint hints of wood. Of course the Brett steals the show, though. Serious funk. As strange as it sounds, it actually smells kind of arctic!

T: Incredibly funky, yeasty, fruity, and Bretty! Great tartness while remaining smooth and funky. Sat outside on a cold, quiet night to enjoy this one. Paired well.

M: Fantastic body, spot-on carbonation for the style, and massive flavor that does not get boring or bland. Every sip is delicious.

O: Even being a gusher, I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. The incident didn't take anything away from the drinking experience. Grassroots/HF (& Anchorage) can do no wrong!

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle into Hill Farmstead stemware. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a 2.5 finger frothy white head with great retention. Beer is a pale, clear goldenrod. Lacing is thick and web-like with good stick. Nice looking beer.

Nose is a bit earthy. Lemon peel, citrus and spice with a very mild funk. Aromatic, crisp and clean.

Opens citrus, lemon peel, coriander, and flower petals. A bit of Brett funk and light, fizzy tartness in the middle with a tart, lemon zest and peppercorn end. Finish is accented and dry with a slight hop presence. Puckering tart and bitter lemon zest in the aftertaste. Very enjoyable.

Light bodied with ample carbonation. Prickly and lively in the mouth and goes down frothy and a bit dry. Finishes bone dry with a filmy aftertaste. Really drinkable.

Grassroots saisons have been every bit as good as their Hill Farmstead offerings and Arctic Saison continues that trend. Super drinkable and definitely worth trying.

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Photo of themind
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a generous head and has an interesting tangy and earthy smell. The mouth feel is good, the beer is well carbonated. The taste is like a Belgium ale with a tangy, sour twist. Its a well made beer that any Saison lover would enjoy. All in all this puppy goes down smooth.

Bottom Line: Excellent Hill Farmstead Family brew!

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Enjoyed the saison in a snifter glass.
Pours a nice light golden color, medium head with very nice lacing.
Smell is tangy and earthy, good yeast.
Flavor is very, very nice. Complex yet light and acceptable sour tang.
Mouthfeel was a touch thin for me, would have liked slight higher carbonation, but still very good.
I found this saison to be an approachable and sessionable beer and would serve as a great introduction to saisons for the uninitiated.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A huge thank you to Paul for grabbing this for me whilst at Hill Farmstead.

Served in a Hill Farmstead wine glass.

The beer is clear and golden yellow with over an inch of fluffy white head. The aroma brings funk, lemons, floral notes, mineral water, earthy tones. Similar flavor, finishing dry. A tasty beer. Mild brett and oak throughout. Not the most exciting saison, but certainly a pleasure to drink.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Huge white head atop a hazy pale orange body. Beautiful lacing and great lacing.

Smell - Bretty and acidic. Pale malt. Lemony citric acids. Slight funk.

Taste - Bright lemony tang. Earthy bretty flavors. Slightly sweet pale malts. Bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium light body. Well carbonated.

Overall - I was tempted to say that this a fairly straightforward oak brett saison, but that sounds foolish.

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Photo of Rutager
4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance. Pours a hazy honey-gold with three fingers of frothy white head.

Smell. Spicy yeast and funky dry brett with grassy hops and a little bit of old barrel wood.

Taste. Lemony sourness, spicy saison yead and dry woody brett, and tart light orchard fruits. Nice.

Mouthfeel. Medium body, maybe on the light side. Medium-full carbonation.

Overall. Great stuff. Wish I picked up a few more but happy to have tried it.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.39/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a glowing orange with lots of carbonation leaving a huge white head and a lively bottle. The head retention is amazing.

S: Loads of fruits! It smelled sordove sweet. Very fresh on aroma, very appealing. I hope it tastes as good as it smells

T: It did, tastes great! A healthy dose of brett keeps it a little funky but this beer just screams like a fruit basket mated with Hawaii. Lots of passion fruits and orchard style fruits. Clean, crisp, a light sweetness and oh so refreshing.

M- Light-medium body, great mouthfeel, very refreshing, clean finish, very carbonated

O: Excellent! I did think it was a little sweet for the style though

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.9/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours a light golden amber with a two finger white head with good retention and pillowy lacing. Aroma of saison yeast, citrus, sour apple, funky. Flavor is citrus rind, brett, sour apple, coriander, peppery spices, finishing with acetic sourness and light bittering hops.. Light bodied with nice active carbonation. A lot going on here, lots of sour citrus fruit and a moderate amount of brett. A bit too sour for me, but should please tasters who like a tart bretty saison.

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Photo of jrenihan
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Batch #1, May 2013

Beer is clear golden with a large white head. Very good retention, good lacing.

Nose contains Belgian yeast, light fruits (apple, lemon, pear). The Brett is pretty mild, just a little bit of funk and cherry.

Brett is the most prominent flavour, but it is fairly mild. Tart cherry and a bit of dry funk. Light fruits, including lemon. Yeast. Oak is there but quite mild. Slightly tart. Nice but surprisingly muted all around.

Medium bodied, moderate carbonation level. Brett slightly dries the mouth.

Overall, quite nice but not remarkable.

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Photo of scotorum
3.99/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bought at the Warren Store in Vermont a month ago, first I'd seen of this Hill Farmstead/Anchorage BC collaboration. Then later in the day the Hunger Mountain Co-op in Montpelier had cases of it on sale for about the same price ($11). My first Hill Farmstead and Anchorage Brewing Co. anything.

Poured from the 25 oz. bottle into a stemmed tulip glass.

a: A hazy gold topped by a huge white head which receded quickly to a surface foam film and considerable lacing.

s: Mild overripe fruit.

t: Somewhat sharply sour fruitlike flavor I could not identify exactly but no doubt the Brett yeast had something to do with that. Grew on me in a short while and became a fine sipper to the end. I was on guard against some unpleasant tastes from the Brett yeast, but was pleasantly surprised that it was so drinkable and tasty. Rather sour aftertaste lingered but not offensively so.

m: Good body, smoothness subdued by sour notes.

o: Enjoyable brew, really lets your palate know it's there, better than expected.

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A very cool c&c 750ml sent to me from Dope (thanks!) split with a mate and poured into my Rock Island snifter.

A: Hazy straw with a quickly-receding crackling white head.

S: Big oaky and fruity Brett notes immediately, with a touch of a grassy (hop?) undertone. Fruit is pear, some citrus, even lemon peel...slight sourness with a tart hint of grapefruit and pineapple.

T: Creamy oaky undertones, funky sour fruit flesh and lemon zest, slight pils malt sweetness and other saison qualities shine through with a yeasty effervescence.

MF: Creamy medium body.

O: Decent, more sour and funky than I'm used to in a saison, this leans 'wild' without being out-of-control. Half a bottle of this was pretty pleasant.

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Grassroots Arctic Saison from Grassroots Brewing
91 out of 100 based on 99 ratings.