Four Witches - New Holland Brewing Company
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Ratings: 174 | Reviews: 37 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by GR_Rick:
2.7/5 rDev -19.9%
Bottle labeled 2012 vintage
Going into this with very little expectation, as I'm not sure what to expect from a "black saison" (on the label).
A: Pours a nice deep brown (almost black) with a thin khaki colored head. Nice looking beer.
S: Smells a bit like black licorice with some root beer-like qualities coming as well. The more I smell, the more I think it's similar to a "root beer barrel" candy. Also get a little bit of grape juice. Smell is unlike any other beer I've had... so far, so good, i'm still happy.
T: Wow, much stronger tasting than the nose suggests. Starts out almost faint-cola like. Perhaps that's the root beer smell I was getting. Can't really put my finger on the middle, but it ends with a little bit of a "funky" bite. Now I'm seeing (from the "funk") how this is a saison. Getting a little bit of black licorice as well, which hangs in through the shorter finish. Taste is different, but isn't necessarily anything special..
M: Thinner than expected given the dark color. Pretty highly carbonated on a relative basis, as well. Not bad, but I'm struggling with the disconnect between color and feel; the two don't seem to match well for me.
O: An interesting beer that tastes like nothing I've ever tried. I feel a bit like I'm at Short's trying one of their new experiments. Worth trying if you like black licorice and/or you like to try "outside the box" beers, but not something I can see anyone wanting to buy and consume a full six pack of. I also don't see myself finishing even this entire bottle (poured out about 1/2 - 1/3rd post review). Worth trying, but grab a friend or two and split the bottle.
07-15-2012 02:40:15 | More by GR_Rick
More User Reviews:
3.4/5 rDev +0.9%
Poured a deep dark chocolate brown with a nicely formed light beige head atop.alot of black licorice in the nose along with some sweet spiced cherries.First off the black licorice just seemed to overwhelm my palate,Iam not a fan of black licorice so that was a bit unpleasant,undereath the onslaught I picked up some earthiness and dark toast.Started off real well but for my taste I just got to much licorice to really enjoy,obviously alot of people like black licorice and may like this more than me.
07-12-2012 15:21:01 | More by oberon
4.08/5 rDev +21.1%
Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Tulip.
Appearance: Extremely dark brown with decent light brown head.
Smell: Holy licorice! All I smell is anise. I would like to say that I can detect some roasted malt and spiciness, but I think that would be a lie.
Taste: Certainly taste a lot more than anise, but that is present as well. Nice dried out roasted malts that taste of smoke, char and coffee. Pretty spicy as well, with rye and clove.
Feel: Moderate carbonation, with a medium body (lighter than it looks). It is fairly smooth and lightly chalky, but the chalkiness doesn't bother me as it usually does because it works with the very dry roasted and spicy finish.
Overall: Other than the one-dimensional aroma, this was surprisingly good. Wish I had bought more than a single.
06-04-2012 00:23:43 | More by bsp77
2.85/5 rDev -15.4%
Poured cold from the bottle, this beer was pitch black. It had a nice cream-coloured head, while sitting on the black beer, looked very nice. The smell was very strong and very complex. There were notes of spices, burnt barley, molasses, and a dominant anise smell. The taste followed the smell like a map... Very complex, almost too complex, with the anise taste overpowering the other flavours. The anise flavour lingered for a bit while the aftertaste of roasted barley took over, which was a nice finish.
Would I buy it again? No. I enjoy the taste of anise, but this beer had too much going on.
11-30-2012 05:41:41 | More by NilocRellim
3.04/5 rDev -9.8%
Unique, but something I could not drink much of. Black, very dry. Like the base for something that had to be added, and it wasn't. Aroma was OK. Bottle from Steve. Some licorice. Low drinkability. Missing hop, mouthfeel, malt. I may cook with it though.
01-13-2013 05:18:09 | More by Sammy
4/5 rDev +18.7%
A - black with a reddish hut; big foamy brown head that fades quickly
S - black licorice, anise, figs, raisins
T - anise, black licorice, roasted malts, figs, raisins, some faint chocolate, some peppery rye, some funky yeast comes through
M - crisp, medium bodied, well carbonated
This is a surprisingly complex and unique saison. It's has a ton of flavor. The black licorice and anise notes dominate which I'm not crazy about but the uniqueness, the rye, the dark fruit, the roasted malts and chocolate all play a part as well. I'm impressed. This is definitely worth a try.
09-01-2012 18:01:54 | More by tdm168
3.55/5 rDev +5.3%
Four Witches pours a dark, chocolate fudge color. It looks black initially. When held to light, a few burgundy highlights are apparent. It’s not quite opaque. A light tan head covers the top. It’s modest and barely covers the surface before disappearing quickly. Lacing was very light and spotty on the glass.
The nose is alright. It seems a little weak. More strength would easily upgrade it. It does feature some dark malt notes up front. Chocolate, roasted, and caramel malts all seem to be present. Smells a little sweet. It does have some earthy and grainy notes throughout. Yeast brings some spicy notes to the table. Interestingly enough, anise seems to be the strongest spice scent. Perhaps a little pepper backing it. Alcohol is masked pretty well. Not bad.
The flavor keeps the pace. It definitely has a strong anise presence. If you’re not into black licorice, you probably won’t like it. It’s definitely a tad strong for my taste. The malt base is a tad roasty, but is mostly chocolate and light, sweet caramel. It’s not bad. Definitely intriguing. Belgian yeast is pretty flavorful. The spicy notes it brings to the table are interesting. I’m not sure if anise is a product of that or not. There are some pepper and clove notes, as well. It’s herbal and grainy throughout. Alcohol isn’t much of a factor at all. Finishes with a bit spices, herbs, and black licorice.
Four Witches has a body that’s on the lighter side of medium. Carbonation feels light and rather soft. It definitely doesn’t seem as refreshing as your typical Saison, but I’m sure they weren’t going for that. For what it is, I like the feel pretty well.
New Holland’s been a very hit and miss brewery for me. Four Witches falls somewhere in between the two. It’s alright. I like the idea of a Black Saison. This one has a bit too much of an anise or black licorice flavor going. It’d be better with a little less of that. Still worth checking out. Grab a single bottle if you can.
06-24-2012 02:47:22 | More by prototypic
4.05/5 rDev +20.2%
If you like GD Hibernation Ale, try this!
A. Good'n Black. No head. No lacing. Flat appearance.
S. I love how this beer smells. Licorice and candied sugar! Almost as decadent as a Belgian ale.
T. This reminds me so much of great divide's hibernation ale, which I love, only it's drier and a tad sour. Tootsie rolls + boozy licorice!
M. Surprisingly not as carbonated as I expected. Pretty creamy. Tho, It's not smooth.
O. Generally I don't go nuts for Saisons, but this is really good to me. Try it, definitely.
06-26-2012 21:50:00 | More by FaceYourBeers
Four Witches from New Holland Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 174 ratings.