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Saison - Hilliard's Beer

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

43 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 43
Hads: 100
Avg: 3.71
pDev: 18.33%
Wants: 6
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hilliard's Beer visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: suncrust on 12-25-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 43 | Hads: 100
Photo of mactrail
3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big foam-up in the Affligem chalice. Nice sudsy appearance and mouthfeel. Light lemon color. Slight aroma of yeast. Light bodied.

A touch of meaty and mushroomy flavors. Tangy and creamy. A little toast in the taste. Really a nicely made and spritzy beer with a modest but a delightful flavor. Some of the Belgian flavors but not as strong as many Saisons. It seems like a great example of a lighter interpretation of the style. Appropriate alcohol content.

Thoroughly drinkable and pleasing brew. From the 16 oz can. If there are still any can skeptics out there, this is one to check out.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.28/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to FalconA for throwing this extra in along with the #properglassware.

Hazy yellow pour, with a fluffy cap of white head that settled to a ringlet, leaving moderate lacing on the glass. Aroma of toasted wheat, funk, earth. Taste was similar, wheat and biscuity pale malts, grassy funk, quite earthy, with notes of citrus pith. A little bit harsh and metallic on my palate, but then again, I've been spoiled with Tired Hands saisons for the past year. Light body, crisp, but a bit too lacking in flavor to be very drinkable IMO. Not undrinkable, but just not something I'd go back for.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.91/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy yellow/orange with a massive foamy white head on top, very thick with nice retention and pretty lacing down the sides.

S: Rather bready up front with a bit of citrus coming through lemon, some grass, and a bit of spicy pepper.

T: A bit fruitier than the aroma with some lemon, melon, and a bit of banana. There is a hint of bubblegum and a slight sweetness. Light spices round out the flavor profile.

M: Medium bodied with active carbonation, rather smooth.

O: A solid saison, not earth shattering, but no problems with it either. Easy drinking, would have it again.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to 5000 for sending this can my way.

The beer pours a yellow color with a white head. The aroma is full of wheat and biscuit malt, with some Belgian yeast and white pepper notes thrown in. The flavor is a little more complex. I get some nice orange citrus notes, as well as some wheat, Belgian yeast, white pepper and biscuit malt. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.03/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a cloudy glowing yellow with a nice white cap

S: Very spicey, fruity, banana esters, some wheat

T: Big yeast presence on this initially. Some citrus and banana really take over balanced with a sordove sulfur meets spiciness. The finish has a lingering yeast, fruit presence with dying spices, sordove cloying.

M: Light to medium bodied. Bleh. Not exactly my cup o tea. Just does not have the taste or feel of a Saison to me. If I didnt know any better I would say it was a hef, meet Belgian Pale

O: Not a bad beer. However, compared to other traditional farmhouse beers like Logdsons I find it very hard to rate it any higher than average.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours a slightly hazey light golden amber with a two finger white head that dissipates to a fine thick layer with lacing. Aroma of apple juice, saison yeast, a hint of wild yeast, bready malt. Flavor follows, with mild wild yeast, apple juice, light coriander; semi dry finish with residual lightly funky yeast and spice. Medium bodied with pleasant carbonation. A pleasant, low key saison that hits all the right notes for the style. Nothing mind blowing, but a very nicely made domestic saison.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.15/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 16oz tall can into a tulip. The fact that tulip-appropriate beer even comes in a 16oz tall can pleases me.

Appearance: light yellow silvery-golden hue with a light haze and a moderate effervescence. Head pours two thick fingers of pillowy white foam. Overall, pretty nice.

Smell: light, sweet malt with just the right amount of dank funk. It's not too heavy, but it's strong enough to let you know you're drinking a saison. Basic, but very well-executed; I like it.

Taste: very much like the aroma, but with a fruitier character. This reminds me very much of a slightly sweet, fruity tripel with just a hint of funk; the flavor is less funky than the aroma. I like it.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a big carbonation and very big creaminess. Love it.

Overall: while the flavor might be saison-lite, it's also very tripel-ey, which I love. This may be the best beer I've had from a can; certainly it is in a Belgian style.

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Photo of beertunes
3.43/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into straight pint glass. Poured a nice hazy yellow color and ended up with about a half-inch of white head that hod very low retention and no lacing.

There was a nice grain base to the scent, with a good yeasty spiciness on top. It had the aroma that typifies the style. On the on tongue, the flavors were crisp. Again, a solid grain base upon which the yeast and spices flavors floated very well.

The body was just a touch thinner than I like in the style, but was good and coated the tongue well. Drinkability was very good, as I find Saisons to be in general, the beer was smooth and clean and left just a tingle of spice. Overall, a pretty good start for this new brewery. Worth having when you see it, and probably worth getting in a trade.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16oz tallboy

I've probably had 25-30 of these things...at the brewery (sweet room, Ballard), on the Puget Sound paired with the freshest oysters in the world, used as a broth for mussels, and most recently, on the couch watching the eurocup

appearance: classic can design. served in an odell imperial pint (for some reason, didnt use the hilliards can-pint for this one)...hazy peach body, creamy white froth with moderate retention

smell: fresh, grassy, lemon zest, light spice

taste: The concept of having a local (~0.5 miles from my house) canned saison is extremely useful. Not only is it portable, the saison is in my opinion the most functional and versatile beer on the planet. The hilliards version is quite light on the funk compared to belgian counterparts but has a pulpy delicious freshness to it - tangerine, lemon zest, peach, pear, crisp yeast, light spice.

mouthfeel: medium-light, creamy

overall: a very pleasant local saison

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Frothy snow white head that fades but trails over a cloudy dirty blonde body.
Big funky barnyard nose with some lemon zest.
White bread base, big blast of white vinegar, some earth, a bit of white pepper, and an herbal tang to end.
Funky finish and limoncello linger.
Tingly, medium, some chew.

Funky base is bigger than a lot of other so-called saisons, but citrus-forward, so ends up refreshing. However, a bit too full and strong to kick back with like you wanna do with a can. Keeps it real, though, even if it is funk and lemon and not much else.

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Photo of blackie
3.18/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pounder can from brewery

a: into my reubens snifter, this hilliard’s pour produces a thin white head atop a golden, very slightly hazed ale, yeasty haze really comes out with second pour including bottom sediment

s: wheat and clean barley malts combine with some simple, moderate yeast aromas to give a doughy impression, coriander, hops very slight with only a hint of grass, delicate spice and some mustiness (others have said cheesefunk or mushroom, I get, strangely enough gunpowder sulfur as well, and definite fungus mold - NOT referring to any infection)

m: carbonation around moderate, prickly, light bodied

t: somewhat sweet wheat malt and clean barley, lots of bready yeast, coriander, stale lemon, some grassiness, a slight coating lingers, very mild bitter

o: a simple saison with some quirks that aren’t exactly endearing to me, my least fave of the line thus far but not a bad beer all told

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Photo of EgadBananas
4.07/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, sunny color. Opaque, with a bright white finger or so of head. Poured into a Stone Nonic.

The aroma is very musky, with a dank bready note, yeast, wheat and spicy, earthy tones.

The taste is musky too, with a hint of nuttiness, wheat, funk, yeast and bread, with some citrus notes.

Light-medium bodied, lightly crisp, slightly dry.

A rather dank and musky Saison, and I'm digging it.

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Photo of Donkster46
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I got this from a local beer store along with many other cans from this same brewery. They're a local brewery so that's how I was able to procure many of their brews. This one was pretty good, no earth shattering but I would definitely buy it again. It wasn't very pricey either. Sadly though this one was the best one out of the lot I got from Hilliard's.

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Photo of msubulldog25
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One from a 4-pack of 16 oz. cans, picked up earlier this week at Whole Foods-Westlake in Seattle. Cracked and glugged to an imperial pint glass.

'Classy' label, harkening to 1960s design/spirit: a zigzag-ing herringbone pattern and calligraphied font. 'One Pint of Beer'

A: A milky/cloudy version of 'blonde'; a paler yellow with abundant carbonation. Really hazy, in fact. A fluffed white topping (a finger, maybe?) that dies rather abruptly. Broken skim of cream on top and some good lace. All told, it's a nice-looking saison.

S: A sweeter, honey-drenched kind of saison. Bready, fruity (apples primarily), a sprig of herbal greenness. A twinge that's not quite 'sour', but that definitely falls into the nebulous 'funky' category. Really nice strength - it grows better and better as it warms.

T: Solid 'farmhouse' ale: loads of baked bread (with a peppery-dry backbone and minty 'menthol' quality as well). Peppery and very dry spicing, a chalky 'mineral' quality, too. Bitter in the end, almost to a fault.

M: Light-medium body, good effervescence/carbonation. A slighlty coating malt/grain effect. Finishes bone dry and quite crisp.

O: I haven't tried too many canned Saisons, so comparisons are lacking. This is NOT better than Surly's canned version of the style, but it's still plenty tasty AND not far behind. Worth having again and certainly worth snagging a 4-pack if you're in Hilliard's extremely limited distribution area.

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Photo of harrymel
3.57/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Canned at some point before getting to my face.

Pours a hazy lemon with a solid sheet of fine white foam. Smells musty, dusty, farmy, some yeast, some grain, some milky character. I like the nose, has the unbound notes I find promising in a beer such as this. Flavor is yeasty, a little much so. Still meanders with some farm, some hay, some manure and clay, but a little too much of the yeast is a bit cloying. Medium on full bodied with a low carb and a semi dry finish. Nice enough. I like where they're headed with this.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.89/5  rDev +4.9%

Can to tulip glass

A- pours a hazy pale yellow color with a two-finger foamy white head that retains long after the pour, with bubbles continuously shooting to the top 3.75

S- spicy & yeasty aroma overall, also picking up some crisp wheat and lemon grass, sourdough aroma malt & earth 3.75

T- slightly tangy lemon peel flavor up front, quickly followed by crisp wheat with some spicy & slightly phenolic yeast, earthy and must on the finish with lingers of more spicy notes 4

M- medium body with moderate-but-spritzy carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that fills the mouth, eventually finishing crisp and dry 4

O- a nice saison that packs enough flavor to avoid the blandness of many saisons out there, worth a try! 3.75

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Photo of snaotheus
4.08/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint can poured into a pair of large snifters

Smells of must and bananas, some spices. There's something vaguely mushroomy about it.

Taste is nice spicy fruity saisony-ness, banana, clove, some other bright stuff in there, some sourness. It's actually pretty darn good! Significantly better tasting than it smells.

Mouthfeel is light and airy. Overall, I'm impressed.

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Photo of woemad
3.08/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

16oz can purchased for $2.59 at Main Market Co-Op in Spokane. No obvious freshness date on the can.

Poured a clear, slightly dark golden color, with a big, sudsy bone-white head that dropped away within a couple of minutes. Looks a lot like a macro-lager.

A little bit spicy in the nose. This spiciness is all that stands out, otherwise it would just smell like an averaged mass-consumption lager.

Mild spicy notes and a grassy hop flavor greet the taste buds. There’s a real subtle, dry fruit flavor in the background. After that, it’s a quiet, unremarkable fadeout.

Medium bodied, with a slightly prickly mouthfeel.

A fairly plain example of a Saison. Once again I find a beer from Hilliard to be pretty unremarkable. I won’t need to try it again.

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Photo of draheim
3.69/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16oz into a Hennepin glass. Pours a hazy yellow w/ a sudsy white head, a few sticky chunks of lace, moderate carb.

Aroma is spice, pepper, clove and a hint of banana - this could almost be a hefeweizen.

Taste is soft Belgian yeast, pale malt, floral old world hops, and some vague spice.

Mouthfeel is soft, medium bodied. Crisp, clean refreshing.

Overall a fairly bland saison. Drinkable and enjoyable, but not on the same level as my favorites. A good entry-level saison at a reasonable price.

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Photo of vkv822
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

16oz : tulip

Hazy golden yellow with a foamy, white head.

Lightly funky, spicy farmhouse yeast, floral, lightly fruity esters.

Medium+ body for the style, foamy carbonation. I would have liked to have seen a more crisp, clean finish.

A well brewed saison, with a great flavor profile, despite it's shortcomings in the mouthfeel I really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of grittybrews
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a pale yellow-orange with a finger of bright white head. Gentle aroma of lemon, a touch of orange, grass, and mild spice.

Moderate carbonation and a light, creamy mouthfeel. Wheat up front with lemon, green apple, a trace of funk, and some earthy spice on the dry finish.

Light and pretty refreshing, but the overall flavor profile wasn't too memorable.

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Photo of Braz
4.06/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from can into glass at Parkway Tavern. Pale gold in color with white head. Active looking. Smells are bready with some light fruit notes. Taste notes are wide ranging. Bready, fruity, citrus, picked up a little clove as well. A sort of flavor explosion. Lighter bodied than I anticipated. Very enjoyable and unexpected.

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Photo of RickS95
3.47/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm torn between the macro looking liquid and the amazing head. The beer itself looks like something you get from a case of 30 for $13.99. It's straw yellow and mostly clear. The only thing that prevents it from being Bud's brother is a bit of chill haze. The head, however, is many fingers thick. Bright white bubbles create a multi-layered head of different sizes and textures. Thick sticky lace.

Hard to tell it's a saison from the smell, but it distinguishes itself from also ranks with a crisp cereal grain nose with a bit if citrusy lemon. Smells like a cracker with a slice of lemon on top.

This seems to have some pale malts and a bit of Pilsner malt as well. Fortunately, the lemony citrus bits counter the crappy malt bill generating something that's drinkable.

There isn't as much funkiness as I would have guessed from a saison and there isn't much tartness either. The acidy lemony citrus makes this beer what it is. There is some bitterness but the acid cuts right through it. Fairly effervescent and crisp finish to scrape the palate clean.

As much as I dislike Pilsner malts, this beer mostly works. The yeast is the star here.

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Photo of artoolemomo
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- Pours up a little more than a sliver and has equally slim retention. The head is a pure cotton white while the body is a dull, pale straw that appears as a golden lemon yellow when held up to the light. A tiny bit of lacing at the start but that's about it.

Nose- Starts off with a pretty typical aroma of banana and cloves which quickly gives way to a more dominant note of apples. The can shows this note as sweeter and tarter. Slight ashiness in the background from the cloves. Swirling reveals a little bit of a bandaid note.

Taste- Starts off with a tart and sweet apple that has undertones of orange and lemon. Banana starts on the middle after these notes while some hint of cloves starts to show itself and ends the finish while the apple appears to extend itself throughout the entire flavor profile. Tart character moves into ash (from the cloves) and then seems to move into a vinous note (mostly white grapes). Above average to good- definitely better than I expected from an American saison in a tallboy. Has a good amount of presence along with good balance and integration. Lacks complexity but is still pretty enjoyable. Not in the same league as Dupont, Boulevard, or regular Fantome but better than some other highly regarded saisons (I'm thinking of Upright 7 at the moment). Maybe not better but comparable.

Mouthfeel- Between light and medium bodied with a little bit too much carbonation. Sometimes a lot of carbonation works well for saisons but only the effervescent variety. Slight grittiness on the finish.

Drinkability- Fairly easygoing. A pretty accessible but basic saison with no real flaws. I think it was between 2 and 3 bucks for a can so it's also a pretty good deal.

Overall- Above average to good but mostly good. Doesn't do anything that impresses; it's simply a competent saison that is easygoing. I would give it a try. B-/B.

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Photo of indiapaleale
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour - straw-colored pour that is soft and slightly cloudy. A nicely formed inch of foam on top. As it settles a bit it clarifies a little.

Aroma - yeasty spiciness, coriander, sour wheat, grainy, lemons, pears and honey. Very aromatic.

Taste - light on the palate but plenty flavorful. Sweet with hints of pears and green apples along with some grassiness and plenty of spiciness from the yeast strain. Some hints of bitter lemon and light wheat. Clean and crisp, this goes down extremely well (and perhaps a bit too fast!). Carbonation is spot on and it has tartness that combines very well with the tangy, yeasty finish.

Overall - love this beer. A very well brewed Saison with the great yeasty spiciness that defines the style. Crisp and refreshing - an excellent brew anytime of year. I love that they chose to can a Saison early on and can't wait to see what they choose to can down the road. I also love the retro-esque look of Hilliard's can designs.

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Saison from Hilliard's Beer
84 out of 100 based on 43 ratings.