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Saison Du BUFF - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saison Du BUFFSaison Du BUFF

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

553 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 553
Reviews: 246
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 13.32%
Wants: 16
Gots: 32 | 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: 553 | Reviews: 246 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jampics2
4.02/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter. Purchased at Warehouse Beverage.

The beer pours a slightly cloudy gold color, with unimpressive head. I wish there was more rockiness or some cling, but I guess this will have to do. The color almost makes up for it, though, as it really does look like sunshine in the glass. Good color but lacking in the head retention/lace department.

The smell is primarily of a touch of white pepper and tons of herbs and citrus. Some orange and lemon are clobbered by rosemary, thyme and parsley. Herbal, earthy and not too overpowering. The herbs do kind-of jump out of the glass.

The taste is great if you're into the herbs. There's a mild citrus sweetness thanks to the lemon and orange hints, and a touch of white pepper too. The herbs come off a bit like herb bread - lots of rosemary and some thyme, with the parsley and sage hanging out in the background and making just a brief appearance.

The mouthfeel is nice for this beer, although just a touch on the creamy side for a saison. The body is medium and the carb isn't too heavy. The beer is substantial and has a nice sweet finish. The herbs linger as well. This is a nice beer and all, and I think it's probably the most approachable of the three saisons for the uninitiated. But I really dig the scent of the Stone, the taste of the Dogfish Head, and the feel of this. Cuvee Du Buff, anyone?

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.42/5  rDev +15.4%
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 OtherShoe2
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours medium gold with a foam white head that is reduced to a skim. No lacing.

Spice and some alcohol in the aroma, plus some fruit (peach nectar?). Some decent fresh herbal elements as well.

Nice herb and spice with some fairly dry malt. Alcohol comes up nect, but not much. Sweet, and light bitter balance great. Spice/herbs and straw/grass are next. Bitter, lightly acidic finish, with a woody aftertaste. Great. Nothing over hopped (where are the hops?). Good balance.

Medium body, lots of bubbles.

I'm digging this. Easy drinking, great version of the style. Would love to try the other two brewers versions side by side.

Photo of Daniellobo
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich and very herbal take on a saison. If one likes the range this is quite the brew.

Presentation: 12 oz brown capped bottle. Dark label with the name of the brew and the collaboration branding in yellow and red sitting over a drawing of the ingredients. Side notes main intent, and background, with an expanded note reproducing a hand-written narrative from the brewers about their spirit and that of this ale. Shows an almost illegible best by date (11 15 2011?) and Alc. by Vol. (6.8%). A bit of a trite and busy design but offers a better sense of the collaboration than its DFH counterpart. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Almost pale to medium straw pour, with a 1" frothy head, medium retention, fair surface memory and some touches of lacing.

S - Fresh herbal sense, nice long nose with a good yeasty whiff.

T - Hmmm, very herbaceous, good long range, the parsley sure is noticeable but as part of a complex combo of herbs, sage and thyme, maybe less so the rosemary, nice blend, earthy backbone, yeasty. A bit of lemongrass.

M - Light/medium body with medium carbonation, earthy range with a crisp and clean finish.

D - Rich and long, very stimulating to the palate if one appreciates the herbal edge. Now, if one is not it the mood it may obviously hinder a touch its drinkability and it could turn a bit boring towards the end.

Notes: Nice take on the collaboration of this 3 brewers, and it sure remains recommendable. But having tried the DFH version, this one sits slightly lower in terms of presence and intensity. This and DFH's review are fairly similar albeit noting that appreciation.

Photo of CampusCrew
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

appearance: amberish cloudy mess.

smell: very herbaceous, had to indivdually indentify

taste: liek it smells, very herby, not very traditional but I really liked it. great with some roasted poultry. nice and hoppy flavor too.

mouthfeel: medium bodied

drinkability: This was my second of the du buff series. loved this beer depsite the low rankings so far. it's not on style, but its a great change of pace. I think we should rate this beer for the enjoyment instead of saying it's not a saison.

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.51/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Drank while eating bratwurst and watching The Biggest Loser.

Hazy yellow with an insta-vanish, white skim head. Tsk, tsk, I expect more out of Victory, especially with the Victory superfriends Dogfish and Stone.

Smells well attenuated, like dry champagne. There's a subtle herbal quality to it but I'm not exactly picking parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme out of my nostrils. That's probably a good thing.

Taste is dry and grainy and a little minty. Mouthfeel is dry and refreshing at the same time - perfect example of the saison paradox.

After watching Sam Calagione, dressed as Lt. Dangle, drink this on the Dogfish Head website I feel like I'm drinking a different beer. Maybe the other versions carry more herbs?

Photo of StaveHooks
3.62/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy light golden brass. Small head that dissipates quickly.

S - Lots of fresh cut herbs-oregano, rosemary and grapefruit. Tangy yeast.

T - Bright fruit - strawberries and apples. Has some soft spice mixed with garlic notrs. Prickly hop bitterness. Tart honey hay. No funkiness.

A very sharp and crisp beer. Strange for the style. Very herbal and quite refreshing. Good drinking but probably wouldn't seek this out.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +4.4%
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 rootbeerman
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle into duvel tulip

A: pours golden yellow, with an lightly off white two finger slow falling head, with good lacing.

S: Rosemary is most powerful along with a citrusy sweet malt, very herbal.

T: malt sweetness along with rosemary and a bit of parsley and bitterness that is not all of hop origin.

M: bubbly and smooth as well as quiet crisp.

D: on par with the other saison du BUFFs.

Photo of mavbrew
3.67/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear golden color, with a finger thick white head. Poured two of the exact same and both are much different in appearance and much more clear than the DFH version, very strange.

S: Has plenty herbal characteristics with some spice and citrus scents.

T: The upfront taste has a powerful citrus flavor with some floral hoppy characteristics. Finishes with a bitter herbal presence and maybe a bit of a yeasty taste as well.

M: Light to medium in body with moderate carbonation.

D: This is part 2 of the Saison Trilogy and I have to say this one was a bit different from the DFH version and to me, not quite as good. The clear color threw me off and I never recovered. A good beer don't get me wrong, just missing some consistency.

Photo of portia99
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Portsmouth tulip. Poured doing a side by side with the Dogfish Head version.

A - Pours a mostly clear golden color with some suspended fine particles floating in the liquid. Not much of a head forms and only a very thin white collar lingers at all.

S - Spicy as expected. Sage and thyme are the most noticeable...the rosemary definitely has a nice presence too. Not much else coming off of this for me. Spices all around.

T - Fruity and spicy. Rosemary and thyme shine here. Sage is noticeable too but just a click below the others. Spices are really the only major flavor components. Malt is barely noticeable and hops are difficult to pick out as well...hops seem to be there simply for balance and really don't stand out in the flavor profile.

M - Light to medium in body with medium carbonation levels. Spices dominate. Finish is very clean. Pretty much nothing lingers into the aftertaste...maybe a slight coolness, but that is it.

D - Good, enjoyable beer. Had side by side with the DFH version which, at least for me, surpassed this version. By comparison, the Victory version was less spicy, less aromatic...and a bit cleaner (which isn't necessarily the best thing for me in a saison).

Photo of WestValleyIPA
4.44/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into my Zatec fluted glass. 1 Finger of white head and a clear golden color. Head dies relatively quickly, and lacing is not present. Smells fantastic, like stuffing, minus the meat scent. The rosemary and basil are most prevalent. A lingering citrus hop-note. Tastes spicy, and then the rush of rosemary earthiness. Seems to have a bit more of a hop note than the Stone version. I need to do a horizontal though to be sure. Nice lingering bitterness. Dry and bubbly, like Champagne. Could definitely down a couple of these. Love this beer!

Photo of 007
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

Hazy golden color with 1-2 finger head that lingered.

Aroma was floral in character and more powerful than other saisons.

Various spice flavors followed by mild hop bitterness made this very enjoyable to drink. The floral aromas, however, make this a brew that I could enjoy in quality, but not in quantity.

Well done.

Photo of nas5755
3.74/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- golder orange color that is more clear than the Stone and Dogfish version. The head compared to the Stone version dissipated quickly.

S- Herbaceous, with rosemary and parsley coming through on the nose with a slight minty-grass base,

T- Herbaceous right off the bat. Very refreshing on the palate when it is the mouth. More parsley in this version with a drier finish that has some rosemary and parsley notes.

Overall- After drinking all three these, the Dogfish Head one was the most balanced, while the Stone one had the most floral and hop like flavors while the Victory version was herbed/hopped in the sense of their Pilsner(if that even makes sense). Very enjoyable. The Victory version is my least favorite.

Photo of Bendurgin
4.34/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured this into a pint glass. The beer is a clean yellow color with lots of visible carbonation and about a centimeter of pure white head. The smell is incredible, the combination of herbs really flourishes on this one. The rosemary and thyme are real noticeable front runners on this with a nice backing aroma of pale malts that are kissed with the slightest about of bitterness. One of the better smelling brews in my opinion. This taste as good as the smell. The herbs add a nice balanced complexity. Again, I can really pick up on rosemary and thyme and I notice a bit more hops in the flavor with a presence of pale malts in the background. The finish is slightly bitter with a reminiscence of green tea. Overall, this is a wonderfully light beer with the carbonation level I would expect. Probably one of the more drinkable saisons I've encountered.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.14/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Chouffe tulip

Pours a lightly chilled golden yellow with a one finger paper white cap that didn't stick around all that long. No discernible lacing. A very small amount of visible bubbles.

Herbs leap out of the glass. Rosemary and sage especially. Crisp herbal profile up front with a bright citrus hop balance. A little bit of band aid like funk just to make things interesting.

The hops shine through quite a bit more on the tongue. Bright citrus and bubble gum hit first with the band aid coming through in the middle. The finish is heavy on the herbs and citrus and brings a decent amount of bitterness to the table.

Light body with a smooth, somewhat silky feel. Carbonation is soft and subtle, which is great. The flavors really work well together and make this guy super enjoyable and drinkable.

This is definitely not the standard for the style, but is welcome to the family. I like the way the herbs play alongside the hop profile. They complement and enhance in just the right spots.

Photo of lordofthewiens
2.89/5  rDev -24.5%
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 ArrogantB
3.36/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle $3, oddly one dollar cheaper than the Stone or Dogfish Head versions. This one seemed to have a lot less herb influence, it was hoppy in the smell and taste and the flavor reminded me of oranges and witbier more than a dry saison. Needs more rosemary. This was just a lot less clean than the Dogfish Head version if that makes any sense at all.

Photo of hdofu
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Part II of my du buff trilogy of tastings, this one is pretty good, though not as good as I remember its Stone Counterpart. It pours gold with nearly no head, the little bit it had was white. Smell is spicy and hoppy. Taste is as complicated as its stone brother having many different spices hitting the taste buds from all sides however it just doesn't seem to have achieved a perfect balance the way the stones one did. Overall it is a good tasting beer though and better then some others I have had recently. Is still pretty crisp and lite which is how it should be. I also find it pretty drinkable and one I wouldn't mind drinking again.

Photo of jlindros
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had the stone version of this on tap, just a sample so I didn't review, and it was OK, but nothing special. Hopefully this one is a little better.

A nice frothy head rises about a finger and fades slowly over brilliantly clear golden yellow wheat colored beer. A little too light perhaps.

The nose brings some interesting aromas, light wheat and malts, a slight saison and farmhouse dryness, light crisp aromas, light mild grassy hops, a little honey, and some spices. There is a very familiar spice in the nose that I can't pick out... rosemary! Tons of it. I think I get some coriander too. Plenty of rosemary, with other light spices, I think I even get a bit of heather.

The taste is spicy, lots of spices! Plenty of rosemary still, tons, with coriander, other spices, I still think heather, touch of cinnamon and pepper, and other spices. Some light wheat and malt flavors somewhere in there. A light bitterness, I think a touch of a mild grassy hops. Some light saison dry farmhouse characteristics, but not much. I think I get a touch of honey too. I light flower like taste too, perhaps the heather, or perhaps some chamomile. It finishes still pretty light, but lots of lingering spices and a little sticky honey feel, but still pretty dry on the finish.

THe mouth is lighter bodied with lower carbonation.

It has a mixed bag drinkability. It is a very light and crisp saison beer, mostly drinkable, but the spices run rampant and start to make it more of a mixed bag of drinkability.

Photo of ComfortablyBum
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz Bottle from Chips

A - Beautiful pale gold. Clear with a finger of head which faded into a thin layer with multi-sized bubble lacing.

S - ROSEMARY sweet rosemary. Also some citrus.

T - Herbal goodness with a sweet tart flavor. All sorts of herbal flavors left at the end.

M - Highly carbonated but still smooth.

D - It was tasty, but I don't think I could have more than 2 of these.

Photo of ism
3.52/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, pale straw color, with effervescence traveling upward to a thin white head that disappears quickly, leaving thin lacing. Nose is sweet citrus, lemon peel, herbs, a hint of pepper and coriander, and slight phenol. Thin-medium body is built by malty sweetness, with orange and band-aids, spice, and finishes with citrus pine.

An interesting effort, but strangely bland. Sweetness dominates the otherwise well-balanced flavors. Very refreshing, but pales compared to other saisons.

Photo of orbitalr0x
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
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 one...it would be nice as a summer seasonal for any of the 3 breweries!

Photo of JamnesCameron
4.42/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed after the Stone bottled version. Differences noted in this review.

Poured into a MJ, The Beer Hunter, tasting glass.

Pours a pale golden hue with a thick white fluffy head. The head did not last as long as the Stone version. leaves lots of lace on the glass.

Aromas of lemon (thyme?), rosemary, and yeast. Not as in your face with the herbs as I was expecting. Rosemary not as dominant as the Stone verion.

Has that saison peppery bite, with lemon and rosemary undertones. Again, not as over the top with the herbs as I was expecting. The herbs are in a very nice balance. Very similar to Stone version.

Mouthfeel is a little fuller than Stone version. A dry beer, as it should be, but not as dry as Stone version. Leaves a little "pucker" effect at the end of the taste, as with the Stone version.

Drinkability is high. I think I could drink this all night and not get palate fatigue from the herbs. Done very nicely. Worth replicating at home, since I have a nice supply of fresh rosemary in the garden. Same impression as the Stone version.

Photo of atsprings
4.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a DFH Signature glass pours a crisp pale yellow with a thin diminishing head. Aroma is sweet lemon zest and sweet malts with a nice side of spice. The taste is a nice amount of sweet malts, tangy lemon and very nice spices. The beer is quite smooth and crisp with well hidden alcohol. I have to say, this may be favorite of the three, but I'll withhold that judgement until I have all 3 side by side, I'm glad I bought an extra bottle of each.

Saison Du BUFF from Victory Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 553 ratings.