Glimmerglass - Brewery Ommegang
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Ratings: 361 | Reviews: 60 | Display Reviews Only:
3.15/5 rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5
12 fl oz brown glass bottle with attractive classy green label and branded black pry-off pressure cap acquired at a local H-E-B grocery and served into an Avery stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are fairly high given the brewery, which has made some solid brews I really like. 5.4% ABV confirmed per the label. Identifies itself as a spring saison, so I'm reviewing as such.
Served at fridge temp and allowed to warm slightly over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.
Pours a four finger wide head of white colour. Fairly thin, actually. Not as fluffy or creamy as would be ideal. Spotty soapy inconsistent lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is pretty good for the ABV - about 6-7 minutes.
Body colour is a translucent transparent yellow-copper of average vibrance. Clean; no yeast particles or hop sediment are/is visible. Appears adequately carbonated.
Overall, the clarity of this beer is a bit disconcerting considering it's intended to be a saison. That paired with the lack of visible yeast has me worried. This appearance doesn't resemble the best beers I've had in the style to any extent. Pretty good outside style conventions, but subpar for a saison.
Sm: Citrus peel - lemon peel, maybe some orange peel. Clean barley. Belgian pale malts. White pepper. Grassy character. Floral hop character. A faint hint of grains. Belgian blonde malts. A touch of biscuit malt. Light warm fruity tones - probably from hops. Unfortunately, it's slightly stale and slightly soapy; I think this spent too long in primary fermentation. It's also unbecomingly starchy for a saison. A higher attenuation yeast is likely needed; it smells a bit too raw, young, and sugary - though I wouldn't say it seems too sweet per se.
No overt yeast character or alcohol is detectable. I'm not finding any of the intricate spicing observed in the very best saisons, nor is there any milky character.
The raw nectary sugars dominate, and could almost be confused for honey.
Overall, it's a pleasant sticky aroma of mild strength, but isn't great for the style by any means.
T: Pretty much the same as the aroma, but the finish is lovely, with bursts of pleasant floral hop character, nectar, evocative citrus notes, and ideally sweet Belgian pale malts. All my criticisms of the aroma apply to the taste; I don't find the spices and/or milky notes usually observed in great saisons; the yeast attenuation is too low, it's too starchy, it comes off a biteen stale and soapy, and the grains don't suit it well. The foundation is pretty basic - clean barley, Belgian blonde & pale malts, flaked wheat, and grains - but it's effective mostly because it's easily imposed upon by the citrus peel character and subtle white pepper. The pepper is more reticent than I'd like, but at least it's present. Clove. Grassy, raw, and young. Crackery malts come through as it warms. Some flowery notes too - lavender among them (which I despise). Seems a bit too sweet overall.
Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour. It's not the most complex, intricate, or subtle saison out there, but it does a fair job in each category. The citrus peel and pepper touches are nice, but don't necessarily constitute true nuance. It's a decently built beer, but isn't gestalt. Certainly a cohesive flavour profile. Slightly imbalanced, albeit. I do like it.
Mf: Slightly coarse. Wet. Slightly refreshing. A bit too rough on the palate for a saison. Medium-bodied. Quite overcarbonated; almost biting. Too filling. A bit too thick. Has too much weight on the palate.
This isn't the delicate fragile texture of the very best saisons, but it's a decent companion to the slightly aboveboard flavour profile. Overall presence on the palate is alright.
Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, or scratchy.
Dr: Downable, but pretty forgettable as far as saisons go. Is this really the same brewery that gave us Hennepin? I like what they're going for, but this doesn't hit its mark. It's a deeply flawed saison, but outside of style conventions it's an enjoyable brew for what it is. I won't be buying it again unless it's the only decent option at a bar, but you could do far worse. There's obvious inspiration and effort behind this. While hardcore saison fanatics will find many issues with it, more casual drinkers will likely enjoy it in a general sense. Ommegang can and has done far better. This almost drinks like a golden ale meets farmhouse ale.
Serving type: bottle
04-23-2014 06:09:28 | More by kojevergas
3.21/5 rDev -16.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3
12 oz bottle into a pint glass.
A: Welp...it's one of those beers. It pours a relatively clear golden color, yeah, I figured it would. But this also pours a bajillion-finger head, bone white in shade. Luckily, the bubbly head doesn't have fantastic retention. Some splotches of lacing are left behind. Since the head doesn't retain annoyingly, I'll still give it a very good score.
S: The nose offers a lot of wheat, but I also seem to pick up a weird herbal tone I get in some wheat beers - like deviled ham, almost. But there are nice notes here, like black pepper, coriander, very subtle fruit, and clove. Still, this is disappointing: I'm sure it will still taste good, but I flat-out don't like this beer's aroma.
T: Thankfully, the taste does work well. Some mild fruitiness opens it up, quickly giving way to a (welcome) yeasty bite in the middle. The finish is nice and lemony, and even mildly herbaceous. My biggest problem is that it doesn't taste particularly rustic: it honestly reminds me more of a witbier (a good witbier, to be fair, but still...)
M: This one is pretty light on the palate. While it's not saison dry, it's dry enough to go down easily. Carbonation is soft yet effective.
O: Personally, I don't think this is that saison-y (compared to, say, Hennepin, which is and then some). To me, this tastes more like a witbier. Having said that, it's a good one, nose aside. A smidge too expensive (compared to its quality) for me to purchase again, but worth a try regardless.
Serving type: bottle
03-22-2014 23:34:35 | More by ThisWangsChung
Glimmerglass from Brewery Ommegang
86 out of 100 based on 361 ratings.