Green Flash / St. Feuillien Friendship Brew - Green Flash Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 331 | Reviews: 103 | Display Reviews Only:
3.49/5 rDev +7.4%
Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip glass.
A: Opaque black color with dense and lofty mocha-tinted foam that collapses to one finger of stable head. Heavy lacing remains on the glass.
S: Fragrant mint and sage are potent, immediately evoking memories of Stone's Saison du Buff. Fine threads of moist earth and body odor represent the combined, tangled influences of Belgian yeast and roasted barley.
T: Begins dry, with smooth roast, cooling mint, and buttermilk that is unctuous and tangy. Early flavors are all delivered simultaneously, much to the confusion of the taster's palate. Herbaceous aromatics and dark dairy qualities provide a bridge into the finish where resurgent roast leaves the palate very dry. Brisk mint aromatics linger after other flavors have faded.
M: Medium viscosity, aggressively cooling on the palate, with moderate carbonation.
D/O: Unique but a little too experimental for its own good, this beer threatens to cross the line between interesting and unappealing flavor combinations. Aromatic herbs are unfettered, providing surprising tactile attributes and bright contrast to the reliably dark but otherwise muddled qualities of yeast and malt. Not highly desirable in the final tally, but worth experiencing once.
03-13-2013 01:18:10 | More by beagle75
3.6/5 rDev +10.8%
12oz Bottle from Party Source Syracuse NY for $3.50
Appearance - Dark brown colour with a large size fizzy light brown head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for 2-3 minutes before it was gone.
Smell - Malts, chocolate, grains, anise, lemons, smokey/burnt notes
Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, chocolate, and coffee. There are also some smokey/burnt notes, anise, and a bit of a graininess and some sour citric flavours. It ends with a tart yet smokey aftertaste.
Overall - Can't say I've ever had a beer quite like this one. It's like a kitchen sink type of beer - everything has been thrown in. I can see how some would say this is a mess, but I can appreciate the uniqueness. Not something I'd rush out to get more of, but well worth a try to see how far the limits of beer can be stretched.
03-10-2013 23:51:30 | More by spinrsx
2.5/5 rDev -23.1%
1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with branded pressure cap acquired for $8.99 at the Cap N Cork in Los Feliz. 5.7% ABV according to my bottle. Label is blue and clearly identifies it as a collaboration with St Feuillien. Reviewed live. Expections are low given the current ratings and the brewery in combination with the style (is Green Flash capable of executing a black saison? I highly doubt it.) Brewed and bottled by Green Flash.
Served straight from the fridge and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
Not paired with food.
A: Shocked at the seeming overcarbonation as I poured. Pours a seven finger head of surprisingly appealing tan colour, great smooth cream, fantastic thickness, and excellent (~10+ minute) retention. The head just sits there; it's not receding at all. Body colour is a solid nontransparent black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Opaque. Fair lacing as the head slowly slowly recedes. Quite foamy. It certainly looks overcarbonated. In any case, I'm excited to try it.
Sm: Peppermint/spearmint, biscuity yeast, and generic malts. Mint is dominant. Some blood-orange. Pumpkin gourd. Medicinal aspirin. Light timid leather. Maybe light brett yeast. Earthy notes. Fennel/anise/light licorice. Light soapy hops. Those are the only notes me broken nose can detect; all apologies, lads. A moderate strength aroma, and dareisay a unique one. I'm excited to try it.
T: Okay. Hm. Dominant mint, light fennel/anise/licorice. Light pumpkin gourd. Crappy cola notes. A bit medicinal, but in the best way possible - if that makes any sense. No bretts or yeast come through. No leather either. Lightly soapy hops. I expected this to be awful given current ratings; that isn't the case. Though it's not good. It's certainly not balanced well; this is a real mess. Buried roasted barley. Dark malts. Earthy character - which isn't doing it any favors. Lacks subtlety and balance. Underwhelmingly executed, but I don't know that it's bad. Certainly unfocused, but I like the ambition and experimentation. There are many beers that fail because they simply don't try; this one really goes for it - and fails spectacularly. I think there's respectability in that. I wouldn't say that I like it, per se, but it's not the crapfest current ratings (76) suggest.
Mf: Smooth and wet. Okay thickness. Light creamy quality. Carbonation is a bit overdone, but it works here. Palate presence is okay. It suits the flavour profile okay. Doesn't lack body.
Dr: Drinkable. Not stellar, not awful, but drinkable. People are being a bit harsh on it, methinks. It's not a great Black Saison - or even a good one. But it's not awful, either. I always applaud experimentation. This is one effort that seems to suffer from its nature as a collaboration beer; I can't help but think that it'd have turned out far better if St Feuillien had brewed it alone. In any case, I won't be buying it again - especially at its high price point. As a saison fan, I don't think much of this offering - but I appreciate what they were going for. The elements here just really don't mesh. Also, why is the ABV so low?
03-07-2013 06:19:25 | More by kojevergas
4.43/5 rDev +36.3%
Bottled on 8/7/12. Purchased 3/3/13 from a fine bottle shop. Assumed fresh (first time seeing this brew on the shelves) otherwise I would have checked. Enjoyed 3/5/13.
First impressions came from removing the cap and hearing a nice pfffssst! from the escaping carbon dioxide. Not that I’d expect a 7 month old beer to have gone flat but knowing that it still had this much life in it was encouraging.
I took the pour in stages as the brew had this wonderful tendency to foam, foam, foam, a rich, cocoa-colored creamy topping which lingered for some time and was quite a joy to watch. It definitely fits the description of a black saison, cocoa-tinged foam atop a black ale.
The aroma confronts you with a mix of chocolate roast and smoked cardamom (seriously) followed by an undertone which to me is unmistakably blood orange citrusy. It’s such a curious mix but tantalizing, and the more time I spend with it, the more it opens, the more I enjoy it.
The flavor starts off flatly bitter—the bitterness doesn’t peak, nor does it die off at the finish—with the roast notes and a blood orange zest coming across. There’s a touch of smoke with that smoked cardamom nuance, with enough of a body to support the flavors without becoming overwhelmed or too heavy.
At this point I’ve tried a handful of black saisons and this was one of the better ones. Hoping I see it again—fresh—so I can revisit it sometime.
03-06-2013 08:01:16 | More by elNopalero
4/5 rDev +23.1%
A: This poured an opaque black with fluffy tan head.
S: It smelled like allspice and clove, with some pumpkin bread and grassy hops and horse blanket.
T: It tasted like grassy hops and allspice and pumpkin bread, with some clove and copper and horse blanket. It had a clean and funky and earthy aftertaste.
M: It was fairly thick with lots of carbonation. Nice full body.
D: This was a nice spicy beer, perfect for the holidays. The scent and taste were complex and enjoyable, and the body was fitting. The finish was smooth too, so it was easy to drink. Nice unique brew (surprisingly better than the black saison collaboration with Stone, Evil Twin, and Stillwater).
03-02-2013 21:21:58 | More by Pencible
4.04/5 rDev +24.3%
Poured a deep dark brown with a huge thick and creamy head, long lasting and tons of lacing.
The smell is loaded with spices I especially get a nice blast of ginger.
The flavor is very nice, with dry cocoa and ginger along with a light smokey roasted malt and a long lasting earthy bitterness.
The mouthfeel is both oily and dry. It has a thick resiny hop quality to it along with a long dry finish.
This beer is very easy to drink, nice and flavorful, like a well done spiced porter.
02-24-2013 03:43:26 | More by bashiba
3.6/5 rDev +10.8%
A: Black with a large khaki head. Good retention and decent lacing.
S: Pepper, caramel, and some roasted malt. Brown sugar and some dark chocolate. Some spice and herbal and spice smell that's difficult for me to describe. A bit of mint, maybe some clove. Fun to smell.
T: Nice dose of bitter roasted malt upfront. Herbal and spice profile come in a bit bitter. Clove, pepper, a bit of allspice, and others that I can't really discern. Finishes with a bit of roasted coffee and roasted malt bitterness.
M: Smooth, silky, and medium-full body. Carbonation is medium. A bit wet.
O: This was my first saison and it left me a bit confused. Nothing off-putting about the flavors or smell but was a weird/interesting experience overall.
02-14-2013 23:31:42 | More by arfenhouse
3.63/5 rDev +11.7%
355ml bottle purchased from Slowbeer in Melbourne. A black saison, brewed with (unspecified) spices, as a collaboration between Green Flash in California and St. Feuillien in Belgium.
Pours, indeed, rather black: certainly darker than many Black Saisons I've had. Firm and deep body, that sloshes rather fluidly. Head is a toasty pale brown colour, pocked with large bubbles. Lacing forms in long ribbons as the head goes down. Looks pretty good.
Nose is spicy and slightly tangy, with aniseed and fennel coming through. Some mild peppery characters, and a hint of cola or candy sweetness. Liquorice is the main event though, and it's pleasant: it wafts in an out amongst the mild acidity and the roast to make a pleasant concert.
Taste is also heavy on the aniseed, but here it's much less dominant. Instead, there are big biting, bitter characters which seem to take over: quite pronounced hop bitterness, mixed with roasted astringency turning ashy towards the back. The saison character perhaps is only felt as a soapy lemony character, very reminiscent of detergent, on the mid palate, although the spices give a continuing peppery buoyancy through to the end.
Overall, it's not bad, but it feels a bit out of balance. There's a lot going on, in ways that aren't always in harmony. It creates something of a cacophonous whole that doesn't work as well as it might have.
02-14-2013 06:13:34 | More by lacqueredmouse
3.48/5 rDev +7.1%
A: A midnight black colored body is accompanied by a mountainous 3 finger goldish-tan head that was absolutely rock steady on the hold. Thick, sloppy spongy patchwork adores the glass.
S: Slight muskiness, barnyard, hay is prominent with a dry grain finish.
T: Flavor is musky chocolate, dry grains and hay with that aforementioned barnyard flair. Dry bitter finish comes with some burnt vegetation and a touch of burnt wood, coal, and earthy soil. Dry barnyard funk, burnt herbaceous hop cones and some coffee with a dash of peppery spice.
M: Mouthful was bitter and dry, medium bodied, burnt touch, barnyard funk and soft carbonation.
O: Overall hard to determine what spices were used. the belgian yeast added some barnyard funk to compliment the dark bitter grain base. Good.
02-13-2013 01:58:25 | More by beerthulhu
3.2/5 rDev -1.5%
Pours black with a large tan head.
Nose shows slight roast along with an unmistakable tang and some spice that I can't pick. Interesting.
Same story with the flavours: wierd spices and some roasty malt along with the same tang again.
Carbonation is spot on at least.
02-09-2013 04:41:51 | More by CrazyDavros
Green Flash / St. Feuillien Friendship Brew from Green Flash Brewing Co.
75 out of 100 based on 331 ratings.