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Grassroots Arctic Saison - Grassroots Brewing

Not Rated.
Grassroots Arctic SaisonGrassroots Arctic Saison

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

96 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 96
Hads: 708
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 2.68%
Wants: 23
Gots: 143 | FT: 23
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
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 96 | Hads: 708
Photo of ccrida
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, Grassroots Saison is clear gold with a white head leaving sticky chunks of foamy lace.

Smell is herbal, light sweetness, faint brett funk, but nice pineapple.

Taste is clean sweet cereals with light dusty barnyard. Herbal snap. There is a feeling of alcohol, must be the brett and grain sweetness coming together. Slightly herbal. Tasty.

Mouthfeel is dry, light, a little slippery.

Drinkability is pretty high, this is a solid saison. Just enough funk to be interesting, more of the tropical fruit notes which are nice. Much thanks J! (583 characters)

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.76/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle marked Batch #1, May/2013. Poured in a shaker pint, the beer is a bright, hazy, golden wheat coloring with a steady flow of carbonation throughout the body and a clingy, bubbly, chunky, bright white head that has a decent retention around half an inch. Nose of buttered biscuits in the backbone, with floral highlights, toasted grains, and a subtle dose of spices, including pepper, orange zest, and coriander. Flavors of sour and tart forward, with an acidic undertone. Citrus tart profile follows, with a heavier spice blend of coriander, all-spice, pepper, orange zest, and another solid shot of sour. The aftertaste is citrus and sour, with a slowly regressing boldness. The finish is tart and tangy, with a slightly drying feel and spiced linger. Decent brew, with a building spice profile as the rest of the palate quietly subsides. Interesting. (872 characters)

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap into tulip at Humpy's in Anchorage, AK. Pours a golden color with white fluffy head. Nice hoppy malty and slightly funky aromas...a bit of lemony citrus as well. Taste is big on the cat piss/lemony hop notes, but is met with some good dose of brett funk and corn/maize malt. Very smooth and nice balance. Really great brew and glad I finally got to snag it on tap. Now to just get a bottle for the basement... (425 characters)

Photo of GonzoHomebrewer
4.19/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Tree House tulip

A- A bright golden hue with a nice frothy head that dissipates fairly quickly

S- hay, pineapple, bit of yeasty saison characteristics, but tame, nothing over the top

T- Saison yeast forward with a complement of light pineapple, pear apricot, does come off as a bit young, especially if compared to Arthur, flavor wise it is just light this early in the beer's life, should shine though with another 6-18 months depending on your preference

M- not quite as spritzy as arthur, but a nice full mouthfeel with gentle carbonation

O- Dangerously drinkable, thirst quenching flavors. I do feel this will shine even brighter in 6 months, will probably revisit in 12 because of my fondness for brett (726 characters)

Photo of puboflyons
3.59/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From Batch #1- May 2013. Sampled on August 11, 2013. Why does this say brewed by Anchorage Brewing of Anchorage Alaska on the label if it is brewed in Vermont? Is it some kind of contract thing for the East Coast?

Anyway the pour is a decent looking, slightly cloudy pale yellow with a soft, fluffy head on top that sits there for quite some time but eventually fades down.

The aroma has a faint Belgian malts and Belgian sugar note but the citrus and tartness exposes itself early on taking over the nose.

The body is light to medium.

The taste begins with a roasted maltiness but just like the aroma the citrus grapefruit tartness kicks in from behinds and remains on the back of my throat for a few moments. (714 characters)

Photo of DovaliHops
4.34/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy golden color with a large white head that goes down quickly. Scent is VERY funky! I love it! Funky barnyard and brett with some hay and tart aromas. Fresh baked sourdough bread with some sharp cheese and citrus notes. Slightly spicy, but more funky than spicy. Love the aroma on this beer. Taste is initially tarts with a good amount of lemon and other citrus flavors. Good amount of barnyard, grass, and pepper. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, crisp, and dry. Drinkability is very high. Overall, I think this is an awesome saison that certainly lets the brett shine through as a fresh beer. I would still like to buy another bottle to see how it evolves over a year or so. (682 characters)

Photo of rdickey
3.59/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pale gold, with fine white bubbles swirling up from the bottom. A rocky white head drops fairly quickly, leaving scattered lacing.

Smell: The nose is an interesting mix. The expected peppery spiciness is there, along with lemon and lime citrus. There is an additional element, though, that is somewhat minerally. I don’t get any funk until it warms up a bit, and even then it is pretty mild.

Taste: White pepper, slightly more Brett funk than is apparent in the nose, and a little fruit tartness start the party. There is an interesting vinous element, along with more lemony citrus, and a slight hint of the oak aging. The mineral element continues, and influences the largely dry finish. It definitely gets more interesting as it warms, so make sure you’ve got your temperature calibrated appropriately.

Mouthfeel: The medium to high carbonation lets this once dance a little bit. It works and seems to alleviate any perceived weight from the oak.

Drinkability: This is a pretty sessionable beer, and would probably do well on a sunny summer day. (1,068 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.92/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle I brought to share on the beer bus to San Diego.

Batch # 1. Bottled 5/2013.

Pours a hazy yellow-orange with a foamy beige head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, earth, yeast, and Brett aromas. Taste is much the same with Brett and yeast flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of Brett bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that showcases a solid earthy Brett presence in the aroma and flavor. (620 characters)

Photo of inlimbo77
4.21/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml, Batch 1, May '13
Hill Farmstead wine glass

A: Slightly hazy pale straw yellow in color. Later of bright white head. Some carbonation streaming off bottom of the glass. Sticky lacing sheeting.

S: Slight Brett character. Some barnyard funky notes. Vinous wine like notes. Some traces of pepper, typical to the style.

T: Up front you get some of the true to style pepper notes. Right in tip of the tongue. The Brett is there but it's not as pronounced as other Anchorage brews. Brings out that barnyard, grassy field, flavors. Some traces of lemon. As you drink it, some chalk like flavors. Clean. Finish is dry and refreshing. Really solid brew.

M: Medium bodied. Richer mouth than expected (699 characters)

Photo of PerHops
4.53/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Pale yellow, visible carbonation with 1/8" head that sticks around.

S- Brett funk, pineapple, grass, melon, apples and citrus

T- More tart than I expected from the smell. Granny smith apples, lemon, funk, spices.

M- Medium high carbonation which works well with the style. No complaints here.

O- I tried this a couple of times and can say this is a truly great saison. It has a near perfect balance of earth, spice, hops and sourness. Reminiscent of fantome saisons I've had in the past. Hats off to a near perfect saison! (529 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Second Bottle opened on 10.1.13

A - Pours a hazy light orange with a huge off-white head with good retention.

S - Citrus, hay, funk.

T - Funky, oranges and lemon citrus, oak, straw.

D - Tons of carbonation with a light body.

O - Funk and tart citrus. I enjoyed this one way more than the fist bottle. (305 characters)

Photo of metter98
4.07/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is very hazy golden yellow in color. It poured with a finger high fluffy white head that died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface and some lacing down th sides of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of barnyard funk are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the overall taste has sour and funky flavors from the brett along with some hints of oak towards the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is an enjoyable saison as it has lots of brett aromas and flavors, but neither of which are overpowering. (592 characters)

Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle.

Pours a nice slightly hazy pale golden color. Pale straw golden with a nice white dense and fluffy head. that is about 1.5 in tall. The retention is impressive. Its really sticky and follows the glass the whole way down.

Aroma is of dry funk. Wood notes a plenty. Slightly moldy and musty oak with some hay notes in the nose. There is slight fruit juice notes from the yeast. Mild pear and some slight phenolic notes. Seems quite dry.

Flavor starts off pretty Bretty. Notes of funk and horse blanket, somewhat tart notes are present. Very woody and musty. There are notes of hay and some slight fruity juice notes on the back end. Slight tart notes mixed in with the juice notes. The brew is straight forward but delicious. Mouthfeel is of fluffy and crisp carbonation with a nice slightly tart and dry finish.

This is a pretty good brew. Yummy notes of of funk and brett with a nice fruity backdrop with some slight spice. (975 characters)

Photo of mwilbur
3.78/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 750 mL bottle into tulip.
A: Pours a slightly hazed lemon yellow with high carbonation producing a 2-3 inch bubbly white head. Excellent retention and lacing.
S: Sour and funky brett, citrus, white pepper, earthy minerals, grains...and it even smells dry/astringent.
T: White pepper and citrus and more dominant here...much less brett. Oak and a hint of lime. Honestly, a bit of a let down after the aroma.
M: Light body. Moderate prickly carbonation. Dry finish with just a whiff of bitterness.
D: Had high hopes for this one...it started out well, but didn't quite hold up. A decent example of style, but nothing special. Still, a nicely refreshing and solidly sessionable brew. Would go well at your next picnic. (727 characters)

Photo of justforrazors
4.11/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 750 mL C&C bottle into HF wine glass, 7/25/13

A- A hazy straw yellow color with a hint of orange and a soapy white head about 2 inches tall. Carbonation is apparent, and fine bubbles are rising from the bottom to the surface. Great lacing and decent retention once the head settles down to a thin but solid head over the beer.

S- Brett up front. Orange peel, some phenolic notes and a slightly acidic odor as well. There is a slight pils malt character as the beer warms.

T- Almost tea-like. It is very floral and earthy with some citrus to balance. The brett yeast character is very present as well. Some bitterness and floral notes on the back end, maybe the hops accentuated by the dry finish?

M- High carbonation levels hit you right away on the front end. On the back end, the dry finish accentuated the bitterness and leaves you with a slightly harsh note.

O- I was expecting a bit more from this, but overall I enjoyed the beer quite a bit. It is a very nice refreshing saison perfectly suited for summer. Not the best grassroots/hf/abc offering, but very good either way. (1,099 characters)

Photo of Skrip
4.13/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml corked and caged bottle poured into a Noda snifter.

A~ glowing piss yellow haha. nice fluffy white head and a little bit of lacing.

S~ lots of bready yeast up front. followed by pils malt and some zesty rye. also some floral notes and leathery brett funk.

T~ pretty much follows the nose, extremely floral here! also a little citrus comes through, lemon, tangerine, lime, and orange zest. i think i was mistaking the rye in the smell with orange zest, every time i smell something zesty i always think rye. nice brett funk on the finish. very much like Arthur, which this recipe is supposably based off of.

M~ extremely well carbonated, smooth, and very refreshing!

O~ i love how you can really tell that both Grassroots and Anchorage had something to do with this. even in a blind tasting i'm sure i could point it out. it has the amazing citrus smoothness and carbonation of Arthur, and the incredible brett characteristics of Galaxy White IPA. i've never had anything from either of these breweries that hasn't exceeded my expectations! (1,050 characters)

Photo of impending
3.78/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 4.25

B+

750ml Batch 1 May 2013 into a tulip. Pours a fully hazed dull orange tinged yellow, towering frothy brett head, the lacing dangles.

A nice sweet mango citrus balances the brett. No funk, strictly upbeat, bright and clean. The oak is present but restrained.

Brett now dominates. Peppery. Peculiar herbal grassy bitter with a touch of zinc. No more dry than a twang. Shy of medium bodied mouthfeel doesn't feel appropriate. Lacks must. The final fading flavor is of the oak.
my expectations were exceedingly high
I hoped this would be to the level of Seizoen Bretta
let alone Oak Aged Seizoen Bretta
unfair of me I realize
cheers
jd (638 characters)

Photo of popery
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours bright yellow-gold. Quite cloudy. Solid white head. Good sized layer of foam. Good retention, some lacing. The aroma has fresh grain, dusty barnyard, some light stone fruit, lemons. Lots of brett presence. Clean. The taste adds in more oak than expected. Big acerbic woodiness, particularly in the finish. It’s mostly pleasant. Lots of clean brett flavor. Some apricots and citrus peel. Mouthfeel is lively and light. It’s almost a touch thin for my taste. Very good saison but a touch boring with so many others coming out. It could just use some sort of twist to stand out. (585 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
3.18/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Snatched this one up earlier tonight; I'm really excited to try my first faux-Hill Farmstead (Hill Fauxstead?). I don't really get the whole subsidiary structure nor do I pretend to understand what the implications are for the beer, but because it kinda sorta has Hill Farmstead's name on it, my expectations are sky high. This is my first Hill Farmstead beer, if we're considering it one. Cost was $10.99 USD. Batch #1. May 2013. "Ale fermented in oak tanks with brettanomyces." Sign me up! 6% ABV confirmed. Distributed by the Shelton Bastards. 750ml brown glass bottle with hood-and-wire cap (aka cage) over a cork served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live.

Served cold, straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Yields a light plunk upon opening; carbonation is indicated to be adequate but not too high.

A: Pours a three finger beige colour head of nice creaminess and frothiness. Plump lightly supple complexion. Appears soft. Retention is superb - about 8+ minutes. Light even lacing as the head recedes. A pretty standard head for the style but a well executed and attractive one.

Body colour is a cloudy yellow-copper. Transparent and translucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. It isn't the hazy milky appearance I've noticed in the best saisons, but it's appealing overall.

Sm: Subtle oak notes with traces of a very light buried toasted wood character. Brettanomyces are certainly detectable, with a pungent diverse funkiness that definitely seems more complex than your run of the mill American brewed saison. Grainy and grassy. Lemongrass. Touches of lemon zest and other citrus. These fruity notes are nicely complemented by the floral and lightly fruity hop profile, which imparts some nicely adhered juicy citrus character. Pear. I'm hesitant to say pineapple, but there's something a bit sweeter and juicier here. Clean malts, straw, pilsner malts. A sticky wet aroma of above average to mild strength. It's pronounced for a saison and anything but ubiquitous, though I don't know that it's necessarily unique. Well executed for the style. Not getting the white pepper and milky notes you'd find in the best examples of the style, nor is there much in the way of complex subtle spicing, but I'm optimistic given Hill Farmstead's reputation alone.

T: Hm. Definitely more fruity and juicy than the style conventionally calls for - especially in the second half. Funky throughout in a general sense, but it never really evokes the intricacies or nuance of brettanomyces yeast character. As far as the yeast goes, I don't get any white pepper, clove, biscuity character, or deep complex funk. Just a sort of middling attempt at a backgrounded funkiness.

Body is interesting. Lots of pear fruit and some lemon bouncing around over top a healthy base of clean pils malts, light filtered wheat (?), and straw. A clean flavour profile which unfortunately lacks the subtlety and complexity inherent in the best beers in the style.

Hopping is primarily floral and complements the body nicely. Bits of fruity wisps don't amount to much.

It actually feels like it has more alcohol than it does. Where is the oak?

Balance is alright. Flavour intensity is average for the style, as is flavour duration. Honestly, I'm pretty underwhelmed. I like it in a general sense and it's pleasant, but there's just nothing remarkable about it.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Soft. Lightly juicy on the back end. Nice body. Way too thick for a saison, though - especially one with such limited depth and diversity of flavour. Overcarbonated. Suits the flavour profile kind of, but I'd say the execution is actually below average. There's something off about it. Not oily, harsh, gushed, hot, or boozy.

Dr: Boy. I don't know if this was just an off bottle but I'm not at all impressed with it. If Hill Farmstead's other beers are this pedestrian I'm in for a lot of disappointment. I definitely wouldn't get this again - especially at its high price. The alcohol could be far better concealed. The thickness impedes drinkability. Wouldn't recommend it to friends. I'm withholding judgment of Hill Farmstead because this is both a collaboration and a weird subsidiary situation but I have to say I'm let down.

C+ (4,381 characters)

Photo of mactrail
4.17/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden with a pure white head in the St. Bernardus globe. Big foam to start makes for a lovely sudsy mouthful. Plenty of the pencil shavings aroma along with a whiff of damp horse.

Moderate but distinct Brett flavor. Some peppery notes. Pleasant, delicate fruitiness with more of the barnyard funk. Just a little pineapple and some pear flavors. The modest bitter aftertaste is just right for the light body and dry edge. There might be a faint woodiness, but I don't taste the alleged oak tank fermentation without some imagination. Still, this is a delicious and restrained example of a Saison, and I like this Brett version rather than the often over-the-top yeastiness. From the 750 ml bottle bought for $14.10 at Bottlecraft in San Diego. (758 characters)

Photo of N17shelfside
4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Remembrances from last night when consumed right after La Vermontiose. No where near as dry as Vermontoise on the back end with a more floral, fruity characteristic. The beer pours with a thin head for a Saison that rapidly dissipates for a saison without much lacing left behind. Some barnyard, but not wholly pronounced as much as a sweetness that disappears as the beer warms, switching to the more dry saison character. (423 characters)

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Grassroots Arctic Saison from Grassroots Brewing
91 out of 100 based on 96 ratings.