Saison Du BUFF - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saison Du BUFFSaison Du BUFF

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

556 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 556
Reviews: 246
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 13.35%
Wants: 15
Gots: 31 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: garuda on 08-24-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed in collaboration w/ Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Stone Brewing Company, and Victory Brewing Company, who each brewed a version at their own breweries.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 556 | Reviews: 246
Reviews by JustinMatthew:
Photo of JustinMatthew
3.84/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This one has been sitting around for a little over a year now.

Poured in a Victory Golden Monkey tulip, a hazy golden color with a thin white head. Smell is yeast forward, spices, light citrus, and banana. Taste is spicy, some lemon, banana, citrus, and a bit peppery. Well carbonated with some citrus and yeast spice lingering sip to sip. very good over all and I'd prefer this one to the batch brewed at DFH.

More User Reviews:
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Onto the final brewery release of this collaboration that I've sampled. Pours into my glass a hazed goldenrod with a quarter inch of bubbly white foam that falls to a ring along with mellow active carbonation. Aromas kick off with fresh cut herbs...sage rosemary and thyme all come to the forefront. Semi-sweet sun drenched malts underneath. Nice and punchy.

First sip brings a rush of fresh cut herbs upfront alongside a smooth, semi-sweet malt. Sage and rosemary blend with the thyme and parsley undertones nicely. Lemon zest accents along with a touch of herbal spiciness. Herbs are well integrated and not overpowering. Finishes with a lingering earthy accent.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp with fast paced bubbles. A bit of a slickness as well. Overall, after trying all 3 I've come to quite enjoy this brew and I can't really say one version is superior to the others by any means. They have subtle differences only. Glad to have been able to try this would be nice as a summer seasonal for any of the 3 breweries!

Photo of lordofthewiens
2.89/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

$5 for this bottle.
It poured a hazy yellow color with a minimal white head.
Pleasant citrus aroma, but also a pronounced herbal presence, which was a little bit jarring.
Things went downhill from there. There was some lemon, a fair amount of thyme and rosemary, and a big, huge dose of garlic. I felt like I had just eaten some scampi or other heavily garlicked meal, and was breathing garlic.
The garlic and herbs made for a sharply unpleasant mouthfeel. Won't drink this again.

Photo of bishopdc0
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on draft at Novare Res, over the course of a few days i was able to try all three versions.

Very clear pale yellow thick white head good lace

The nose is sweet with some citrus grassy hops and yeast the spices do no present them self

Starts with a sweet citrus and spicy it milds and finishes dry with a dry mouth the spices present themselves and finishes bitter much like you'd get from licking a lemon

Photo of Altenor
3.67/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Brilliant yellow with a small white head, very similar to a pils. Not much carbonation must say even though I poured a little aggressively at the end. Nothing spectacular.

S: Crisp lemon, some pepper, herbaceous, not bad.

T: All that was in the nose plus a little honey sweetness that is quickly overpowered by the bitterness. Bitterness remains in the finish quite a while. I feel that the hop bitterness is a little rustic, almost like drinking a classy Budweiser. The bitterness is too much for the other flavors. It doesn't really invite you to take another sip, but have to say that it's very flavorful. Once I it got warmer the balance was a little better.

M: Although it didn't produce a big head, it feels lively. Very refreshing and thirst quenching. Great for a hot day.

O: Not bad but nothing extraordinary. Just a good take on the Saison style with an American hoppy twist. I would have preferred less bitterness but I get what they were going after. Would recommend.

Photo of ehammond1
3.24/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle (2010)

Port Bottle Shop
Carlsbad, CA

Clear goldenrod and yellow with a very thin, almost non-existent, white crown. Spotted lacing down the glass.

A strange, herbal aroma consisting of spicy pepper and rosemary (and thyme?). There's some hop/citrus aromas, but they're not the highlight or standing out.

Strangely herbal flavor dominated by rosemary, thyme, ?garlic?, and a high level of bitterness. Nothing marries here particularly well, but it's not at all bad. The lingering aftertaste of plant stems is the most unfortunate aspect of this beer.

Medium bodied. Ample carbonation.

This version is slightly better than Stone's, but I don't particularly like either.

Photo of Soonami
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Victory's version of Saison Du Buff is a nice saison and the first of the series that I have had. I have the rest of the them and am looking to try them all together to compare.

This beer is a light crisp beer that was very pale and had almost no head. The beer smelled primarily of freshly crushed sage, rosemary and lemon peel. The beer definitely had the flavors from the herbal additions as well as a sound bitterness and peppery bite and a tartness in the sweet finish. For me it was a bit too sweet and the herbs dominated the flavors and aromas not really balancing with the beery contributions. The carbonation was a bit low for my liking. Overall this was a good beer that was well made and easy finished

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.35/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appears pale golden slightly hazed hue with a bright white head and forms fine even lacing down the sides of my glass. Aroma full of fresh herbals alot of rosemary/citrus/grassiness. Malt base shines through with pale biscuit malt tones and spicy yeast characters. Flavors hit maybe too aggressive with with botanical/herb additions. Full on stem/leafy rosemary bitterness masks many aspects of a nice saison that could be here somewhere...I thought the Stone version was rough and the DFH a bit more palatable, but this one is unbalanced on it's own. Use as a marinade with some chicken breast or serve it with a nice meal, on it's own this is a bit much. I can't picture this flavor working in a regular offering, interesting experiment, but I've done enough sampling of these herb/spiced brews with these 3 interpretations. Mouthfeel dry in the finish with overkill herbaceous qualities, medium bodied decent carbonation. Drinkability overall I think I've said enough about my sentiments on the repeat drinkability, serve in small portions with herbally infused meats.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a Nonic)
A- This beer pours a clear orangish-yellow body with a thin film of off-white foam that soon fades to a thick bubbly ring. There is a good carbonation of bubbles that support the head.
S- The rosemary and dry lemon zest blend with a yeasty cheese rind note. This is followed by a green dry herbal finish with some woody hop qualities and some more rosemary that really grows as the beer opens up. There is also a soft decaying leaves aroma that comes through in the finish as the beer warms.
T- This beer has a full but not offensive rosemary flavor with some bigger parsley flavor and a bit of a tart bite. The pale malt flavor gives way to a club soda flavor and a carbonic acid and dry pungent hop finish. There is some dry lemon zest that pops through as the beer warms and s a slight tang of green cinnamon hops in the finish.
M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a dry texture and a fizzy bite in the finish.
D- The herbs are nice and full but the rosemary and tartness get a bit too dry and strong as the beer opens up. The yeast takes on more of the qualities of a Tripel moreso than the other two Saison du Buffs.

Photo of CloudStrife
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Pours a crystal clear golden color with a 1.5 finger puffy white head. Lots of large bubbles are visible rising to the surface. Head dwindles to a film within a few minutes. Good lacing on the sides.

S: Initial smell hits you with spice and herb. Can really pull out the rosemary, sage and thyme. A little wheat in the background and a real faint hop bitterness.

T: Starts off with some light herb and spice. Some wheat body in the middle. Ends with a little bitterness from the hops. Really enjoy those spices in this style.

M: Fairly light on the palate. Good carbonation and a clean finish.

Overall a unique saison that is definitely worth a try. I'm always partial to beers that are pushing the envelope which I am sure will show in my review. A little less spice/herb than the dogfish head version.

Photo of r0nyn
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my newly acquired Otter Creek nonic pint glass.

Pours a translucent golden yellow hue with a minimal quarter-inch head that doesn't leave much lacing at all. Bit more subdued than the DFH offering, but I like it all the same. Herbs and spices dominate the nose again, but I can also pick out a bit of malt and yeastiness as well. Maybe a little bit of pine and citrus too amongst the herbal bomb of smells.

Herbs, herbs and more herbs to start, along with some hoppy bitterness. Both are on the subdued side however, and quickly give way to a sweeter malty backbone along with some bubblegum snap yeast. The spices linger into the aftertaste, which coats the tongue pretty well. As it warms, herbs lighten slightly, which is surprising, but not unwelcome. Alcohol is just a warming twinge at the end. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and crisp, with a little bit of effervescence from the carbonation.

Drinkability is just slightly better than the DFH version to me because of the tempering of the herbal taste as the beer warms up. Towards the end it gets more malty and sweet and I do quite like that so it's a very welcome development. It was an enjoyable brew and I hope I can find the Stone version of it soon to complete the trifecta.

Photo of mdaschaf
2.39/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a DFH pint glass

A: Poured a clear golden color with a small head, a little retention, and decent lacing.

S: I get a faint aroma of some of the herbs used here, but an overwhelming aroma of bubblegum.

T: Again, there is a huge bubble gum taste that dominates. I get the herbs on the back end but just barely.

M/D: Mouthfeel is good, with strong carbonation. Not really sure what happened here. I have had the 2 versions made at Stone and DFH and liked both of those. Just a confusing beer.

Photo of MrVonzipper
4.34/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From bottle to a Petrus tall goblet

Poured a fairly cloudy, golden-lemon color with a very small bubbly white head. No head retention.

Very nice and cool nose with notes of Eucalyptus, light pine and citrus

Perfumey flavor notes include floral, eucalyptus, light citrus-grapefruit. Flavors start very light and mild and intensify from middle to back end and mellow again. Almost a Lemonhead flavored aftertaste.

Very smooth, light on the palate mouthfeel with a nice light aftertaste.

Overall I think think beer is pretty awesome. A perfect beer for this upcoming summer. Very cool notes on the nose and flavors that changer throughout the drink. I was almost blown away to see and remember it was 6.8% abv because it does Not drink like one, so that's a pleasant surprise. This is a great collaboration and highly recommend it to others.

Photo of MouthFullOBeer
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a refrigerated bottle into a room temperature pint glass.

Pours a crisp, golden color with a very thin, not very frothy head. Very clean-looking for an ale, could be confused with a lager. If I didn't know any better I might think this was a pils, maybe even an American adjunct. Lots of carbonation suspended all throughout the glass. The head dissipates rather quickly.

Any aesthetic similarity to Miller Lite is pretty much dumped out the window once I bring this beer to my nose. The aroma is full of herbs and spices. At first it's difficult to pin down, but the most dominant scent is definitely sage. After that I'm not too sure. I think I can detect some thyme, and maybe just a dash of coriander or black pepper. There is a piney smell coming through - maybe a touch of lemon. There's a faint third layer of scent that I suspect is a type of fruit (other than lemon) but I can't say for sure. The bouquet is a point of interest in itself. I find myself agitating and smelling repeatedly instead of moving on to the taste. After a while I detect a faint whisper of a grassy note.

The flavor is spicy as well. The sage and maybe thyme dominate and really linger on your tongue after each sip. A lemony tone darts in and out of perceptibility, each time being overpowered by the sage. I'm looking for the grassy aroma I thought I smelled to come through in the flavor, but the taste is such a complex and spicy one that if the grassy note is there then it is lost in the chorus of spices. The lingering sage is accompanied by some hop bitterness in the aftertaste. The different tastes all blend together so well, working off each other and complementing each other, that they were difficult to distinguish from each other.

A very light body, although lively. It goes down very smoothly - one second it is there and the next it is gone. But it leaves behind a powerful and delicious aftertaste to remind you that it was there.

This was an excellent, delicious brew, one of my favorites. It's a shame that it's a limited release. I'm hoping that one of the three breweries that crafted this masterpiece decides to start making it permanently, because it's worth every penny of the high price the case cost. It was only the second saison I had ever tried, after trying Triumph Brewery's house saison on a whim and liking it so much I drove straight to the beer distributor. I'm not sure which of the first two I had that I like best, but I do know that I haven't had one since that achieves quite the level of quality as either of them.

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

3.68/5 rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a hazy, straw yellow with a white finger width head and decent retention, resulting in a fine lace with nice stick.

Smell - Strong herbal aromas, especially from the sage and parsley. Slightly minty hint; probably due to the thyme.

Taste - Starts with an herbal combination of flavors; somewhat earthy, minty, citrusy and slightly peppery; mid-taste there's a mellow banana note from the yeast, otherwise the brew is fairly consistent in flavor from start to finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Moderate carbonation. Smooth and drinkable.

Overall - Very well executed, but not a necessarily a combination of flavors I'm really looking for or craving in a beer. Tired this the day after the Stone SdB, and there was virtually no difference.

Photo of GilGarp
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle served cold into a pint glass. Saison Du Buff (Victory's version) is much the same as I remember Stone's to be. Thinking back, it would have made more sense to try all three side-by-side and that was probably intended by the brewers but oh well. Anyway, similar appearance and aroma. A slightly hazy yellow color with short head and nice lacing.

Aroma is herbal with sweet and sour notes. The herbal qualities almost seem floral at times.

Flavor is actually quite bitter, which surprises me at first, but then I get all of the herbaceous additives and it's really pretty strong. Somewhere between a Thanksgiving turkey and a potpuri, the flavor is just on the right side of being overwhelming.

Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied and well carbonated. The balance is definately towards the bitter end. Alcohol is accentuated by the herbs.

Overall a good, yet very unusual, saison. However, I feel that unless you are an uber-beergeek, there is really no point in having more than one brewery's version of the Buff.

Photo of Stigs
4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on tap at Spoon...excited about trying the Victory-take. 6oz sample served in a small glass

A - clear, dark yellow beer, not cloudy like its Stone-counterpart. fluffy inch or so of just off-white colored foam.

S - very grassy, fresh, a good bit of slightly tart lemony fruits...a little more concise than other versions. good amount of herbal spices, thyme, basil, mint...pleasant and inviting.

T - heavily dosed with garden-herbs, thyme, rosemary, basil and mint...not overdone though. tart and lightly sweet lemons cut through everything, along with a light grassy hoppiness. good balance.

M - medium bodied, crisp and tight carbonation. dry clean finish...lingering herbal spice and grassy bitterness.

D - enjoyed this much more than the Stone version for whatever reason...everything felt more in check and more harmonized and balanced. great with foods as a nice flavor compliment.

Photo of tdm168
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Southern Tier tulip

A - gold with a soft cap of white, loose head that has little retention

S - rosemary, thyme, faint yeast; like my Italian grandmother's kitchen

T - faint malt up front with a heavy, herbal, bitter hoppiness that follows. The rosemary, sage, and thyme are noticeable but not as pronounced amongst the hops. They're present mostly in the finish. The is only a slight hint of Belgian yeast.

M - medium bodied, a bit warm, crisp, well carbonated

This is a nice Saison. It has a nice hop character that I really enjoy. The spices are noticeable and balanced which is also great. The drinkability is pretty high, but after a full 12 oz my palate was looking for a change of pace. It's definitely worth a try. I would probably have this again.

Photo of mempath
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into a DFH pint...don't have a Victory pint!

pours a light, dullish straw (like the DFH) with watery lacing and head. still, for it's style, it's fine. smell is herbal-hoppy (seems stronger than the DFH...haven't had the Stone version yet).

taste matches the nose with strong hoppiness tempered with herbal tincture...something for hopheads looking for something different and a good intro for wannabe hopsters. a quick dry but snappy finish.

very drinkable. i still prefer Dogfish this round...

Photo of secondtooth
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy golden upon dispensing, with some nice suds and beautiful loopy lace. Some sediment, but still quite lovely.

Aroma is fruity and citrusy, with a hint of spice. Unusual and appealing.

Taste is unique, too. The fruity and spicy character of a saison with a crisp hoppy presence. Quite well-done, and easily recommendable.

Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.79/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out a smooth golden stream with very small frothy head and lazy bubbles.

Smelled instantly of pink fruits-grapefruit and guava, sage, and hops a garden for the nose.

Tastes of green guava, green peppers and yellow peppers, basil and sage... my girl friend says it should be a pizza topping thats up for debate... a little belgian candy when it warms. Crisp at the outset, soft and sweet near the end.

Mouthfeel is a strong medium body with delicate carbonation, stays in the mouth for a bit could use a light mozzarella and Basil to go with it and clear the palate.

Drinkability is high i'd recommend it.

The value is mediocre... a good beer but only 12oz for 4 bucks and tax... I wish for better deals before beer becomes wine.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasted side by side with the other Saison du Buff beers, I found the Victory version to be the most flavorful and most balanced, but also the one with the least herbal character to it.

It poured a hazy, deep golden body beneath a short head of bright white foam that faded surprisingly quickly in comparison to the other two, and the lacing was limited as well (could have been a dirty glass). Noticeably, it also had the lowest carbonation level, which probably has something to do with it. On the upside, it was the clearest of the three, however, and I could at least see my fingers through the glass.

It offered the brightest and most welcoming aroma of all, delivering a splash of mineral and fruit (citrus, tangerine, apricot) over a sugary and vanilla drizzled Pilsener malt base. As it warmed the rosemary really began to pop, backed by thyme.

The taste really brought out the herbs, and they remained straight through the long lasting finish, but the fruit was there as well with with tangerine and apricot and the slightly tart note that goes along with it. The bitterness gently rose and then subsided, leaving the dryness of the herbs and the chalky yeast to balance it. Great finesse!

Of the three offerings, it had the most body, and the least carbonation, yet it still felt like it had a good mouthfeel. It was more Prima Pils than saison.

Regarding drinkability, I think it offers the most straightforward drinkability of the three, but perhaps not as much subtle complexity as the DFH and Stone versions (which is probably due to yeastiness). Personal choice, I'd choose the Victory version 3 out of 4 times over the others; and I could enjoy more than one of these in a sitting.

Photo of dirtylou
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Collaboration saison - Victory edition

picked up a single at Binny's in Schaumburg a few weeks ago

appearance: served in a delirium chalice - pale golden-yellow body, 1/2" white foam head with light lacing

smell: herbal hops, crisp yeast, rosemary, pear, lemon zest, peppercorns

taste: rosemary is significant, zesty yeast, grassy hops, sage, peppercorn, citrus, lemon zest. I remember liking the Stone version more, but this was enjoyable.

mouthfeel: lively, zesty, moderate carbonation

drinkability: good, finished the bottle rather quickly

Photo of prototypic
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Victory Saison Du Buff pours a light gold color. It's mostly clear, and looks bright yellow when held to light. A fluffy white crown sits on top. It's roughly a finger and a half in depth. Retention is good. Lacing is sticky and moderate.

The nose is good, but is a little lacking compared to its siblings. It kicks off with a very grainy, earthy scent. Herbs and spices creep in, but seem to be weaker than I recall. That's where this one differs. There is some pepper and rosemary, but they're secondary. EDIT: It opens up quite a bit with a little warming and deserves a score bump. The herbs and spices become much more prevalent. Belgian yeast is noted and smells delicious.

The flavor is every bit as good as I recall the other releases being. It's a great blend of earthy notes, herbs, and spices. Light pepper and rosemary blend extremely well with a grassy flavor up front. There's a bit of sweet malt holding things together. Belgian yeast comes through loud and clear and complements the other flavors very well. Hops are a little stronger than the other releases. They're grassy and floral. Tastes like noble hops to me. Finishes herbal and very dry. Good stuff.

The body is medium and very smooth. Carbonation is active, but the bubbles feel light. Personally, this one has the best feel of the bunch (if memory serves correct). Drinkability is extremely high. This stuff goes down too easy. A 12 oz. bottle is simply not enough.

I believe this is the first time I've had the same beer from three different breweries. This Victory Saison Du Buff doesn't differ materially from the Stone and Dogfish Head versions. It may be a little hoppier than the other two, but it's been a while since I had the other two. Bottom line - Saison Du Buff is very good beer. It doesn't seem to matter who's responsible for brewing/bottling it.

Photo of nickd717
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle from K&L Redwood City. Hittin' for the Saison du BUFF cycle...AWWW RIIIGHT! Major win for the tick. Will this beer be VICTORY or will it sink like a STONE, rearing its ugly DOGFISH HEAD with an Indian Wellsesque awfulness? Let's have a look-see, shall we?

Appearance: Clear bright golden in color with a one-finger white head and pretty good lacing.

Aroma: Ah, those familiar spices from the other versions. They're here again. Not as overdone as in the Dogfish Head version (surprised?), but it reeks of Scarborough Faire for sure.

Flava: This is a balanced, crisp saison. Not too funky, but markedly yeasty, with a touch of pale malt that doesn't add too much sweetness. A good spice level with sage and thyme standing out. A hint of pepper.

M****f***: Exceedingly clean and crisp with medium body and lively carbonation.

I enjoyed this, and not just because it was an exciting tick. A righteous saison and possibly the best in the series. Chalk up a victory for Victory.

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Saison Du BUFF from Victory Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 556 ratings.