1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Scythe & Sickle - Brewery Ommegang

Not Rated.
Scythe & SickleScythe & Sickle

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

834 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 834
Reviews: 204
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 10.1%
Wants: 28
Gots: 45 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Scythe & Sickle is an-amber ale brewed with a variety of malts, including pils, rye flakes and oat flakes, for incredible depth of flavor and a hint of natural sweetness. Scythe & Sickle brings a new life and flavor to autumn beer lists traditionally filled with Oktoberfests and pumpkin ales. The flavors of the hard work of summer and the celebration of autumn harvest are captured in Scythe & Sickle, creating a unique but traditional Ommegang farmhouse harvest ale.

“Scythe & Sickle is our foray into honoring the harvest season, taking the finest malts and blending them seamlessly into a rich amber ale,” says Brew Master Phil Leinhart. “Farming is about precision, timing and care, and this gently sweet ale is our testament to the craft and care of farming.”

(Beer added by: MLasoski on 08-27-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 834 | Reviews: 204 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of thezach
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%

Try this beer, let it age, try it again! I picked this one up last fall, around August 2012, and figured I'd love it. Boy, was I wrong. It was puckering and astringent and smelled like musty hay and grass and just, wow, I did not enjoy it. Thankfully, I said "well enough of THAT beer, and put one aside for about a year until I found it yesterday and figured, "...eh, why not?"

So now, one year later, this beer poured a crystal clear burnt gold with a towering rocky white head that lasts. It presents a wonderful spiciness (maybe pepper, plus what I feel is a warming, spicy alcohol note*) that struck me immediately upon pouring it into my glass. This blends wonderfully with a subdued soft herbal hop note. This was difficult to distinguish from the whifs of light caramel malts that came forward as it warmed. A little toasted biscuit going on there too. Nice clean bitterness that lingers a little bit after the finish alongside the mellow caramel sweetness. It finishes clean and fairly dry, there's even a bit of a puckering note in there too, maybe from the rye, probably also the yeast.

*I figured I must've been mistaken, as the beer falls just shy of 6%. How could that light of a beer have such a prominent alcohol note? Apparently this is the norm for the style. ...I looked it up.

thezach, Aug 30, 2013
Photo of ooms
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

ooms, Aug 29, 2013
Photo of mendvicdog
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

mendvicdog, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of cjgiant
3.44/5  rDev -10.9%

Initially I was unimpressed by this beer. Then I started analyzing it and noted some interesting characteristics. It didn't lead to a much higher rating, but it was interesting.

Cloudy amber golden with with some head, decent retention and good lacing. Smells a little peachy and bready. Taste reminds me of Anchor Steam initially, but with a little note of honey; then a nutmeg/cinnamon taste comes on pretty strong, before fading without much dryness.

cjgiant, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of ortie
4/5  rDev +3.6%

ortie, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of SeanInDC
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

SeanInDC, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of emerge077
3.71/5  rDev -3.9%

Hazy dark amber orange, full fluffy head of foam with a halo of drippy lace in the glass. Head dissipates after a few minutes, lasting skim on the surface.

Aroma has a signature Duvel-esque quality to it, a slight earthiness and spice, mellow grassiness.

Flavors are supple and complimentary, specialty grains and an understated hop character that lends some light bitterness. Mildly toasty with a brief hint of sweetess upfront, moving into a dry finish with a Duvel yeast aftertaste. Overall it was good, though not wildly unique.

emerge077, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of dgeebs07
4/5  rDev +3.6%

dgeebs07, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Hops are in abundance, malts are in abundance- this means only one thing: Brewers Gone Wild will make it to a beer isle near you!

Yet, in conservative and charming fashion, Ommegang opens with a classy French-style Biere de Garde Ale. Its rich bready character is easily captured by the eye as the foam slowly separates from the rich body underneath. Mid amber in color, its hazy appearance even looks like bread crust. An ivory white head builds upon the ale with strong retention and lacy rings that commemorate each drink taken (turns out there's fewer of those than you would have thought!)

A bready, fruity and spicy culmination strikes the nose as the scent of fresh baking bread, citrus fruit, orchard fruit and wine-like spiciness entice the nose. Lemons, oranges, peppercorn and pleasant tartness all teases the nose as the first sip falls near.

To taste, the strong bready and yeasty taste is of light bread, vegemite, and the crust of freshly baked bread. That richness is soon met by a balance of two classes. First the fruit complement is of orchard and citrus but then the peppercorn and rye spice all culminate into a complex structure of flavor. None of the flavors pull ahead of the other- this reaches a perfectly balance taste in the middle before the acidic fruit and pepper spice pull ahead of the bread to finish.

Medium bodied throughout, the beer's incredible richness seems heavier at first but its bready weight lightens considerable in the middle in order to allow the fruit acidity, peppery spice and alcohol warmth to dry the taste with certainty to close.

Ommegang has hit an absolute home run with this style. It's French in character and complex in delivery. Just enough earthiness really sells its taste but still its not as charming or distinctive as in could be. More straw character, higher dryness and even (dare I say) a pep of butter could really round this thing out!

BEERchitect, Aug 26, 2013
Photo of Ian_Hammons
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Ian_Hammons, Aug 26, 2013
Photo of ajdemma
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

ajdemma, Aug 26, 2013
Photo of Magery
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Magery, Aug 26, 2013
Photo of KYGunner
4.01/5  rDev +3.9%

The Amber color is deep, rich and proud while the head was thickly cohesive and had "to the end" retention.

The nose is filled with light malt, grain, biscuit ,cracker and toast. There's a sweetness like apples near the back that gives a certain orchard like scent. Coupled with the grains there is that outdoorsy farm like smell.

The taste is malty with some cracker and toast. Rich grains come alive in a rather robust texture. The sweetness from the scent is apparent in an Apple or pear, but it's a rather earthy natural flavor. There's also a spiciness, peppery, that is light on the tongue yet apparent. All these characters round out to the farm or orchard atmosphere the brewers were going for.

Overall this is a wonderful and fascinating beer that seems to tell a story with its characteristics.

KYGunner, Aug 25, 2013
Photo of DavidRose
4/5  rDev +3.6%

DavidRose, Aug 25, 2013
Photo of jhat
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

jhat, Aug 24, 2013
Photo of Cylinsier
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%


Pours a slightly hazy amber with a white lacing.

Smells of caramel and biscuit malts.

Flavor of caramel, biscuity malt, some non-bitter nut flavors, a mild hop, and a bit of butterscotch.

Medium body with a tingle of carbonation on the tongue.

Really good ale, especially good flavor and flavor balance. Very enjoyable and worth trying.

Cylinsier, Aug 24, 2013
Photo of riktronics
4/5  rDev +3.6%

riktronics, Aug 24, 2013
Photo of dvmky
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

dvmky, Aug 23, 2013
Photo of pottergator
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

pottergator, Aug 23, 2013
Photo of utopiajane
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%

Pours a hazy orange amber with a golden hue. Fat luscious head that took forever to fall and left scads and dabs of clinging lace. Fell of to a tall and rocky cap then a layer over top. Streaming effervescence. Nose is Light and toasted grain. light belgian yeast with a dry rye and a little dry wheat. Bit of pepper and the rye and the yeast are both a touch sour. There is a light sweetness and some terrific fruit on this. Light banana, apple, pear, and sweet orange. There's also a bit of clove to round out the nose but lightly. Grassy and with some must and earth.

Taste is marvelous. Little toasted grain and light bread. Citrus is tart and sweet and the rye is sour and also sweet. It's like all the opposites have come together on this palate. Sweet and tart. There's some apricot and the apple and pear really are the main sweetness in this rather than a caramel sweetness from the malt. That's how it stays so light in the body. There is a hint or a suggestion of sweet potato or yam but not any real flavor of it. No heavy winter spices either. No nutmeg or pumpkin spices. The pepper is graceful. This finishes dry, with a touch of hop bitter and oil and a light lingering sweetness that's entirely from the fruit.

This beer is the perfect bridge between summer and fall. It has a tremendous fruit character that continues to evolve. The belgian character gives it a stately manner and a dry quality overall. It reminds you of everything that's good about summer with ti's sweet fruits and then shows off all it's tartness and sour to lead you toward fall and winter flavors. The banana and bread are so light on the palate you hardly notice them. It even shows you a hop bitter in the finish.

Flavorful, rousing, deep, complex but also simple in it's approach, stylish and pretty. Ommegang hasn't disappointed me yet.

utopiajane, Aug 22, 2013
Photo of dirtyjerk
4.75/5  rDev +23.1%

dirtyjerk, Aug 22, 2013
Photo of Los1324
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Los1324, Aug 20, 2013
Photo of thecheapies
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%

Ommegang Scythe & Sickle. Poured into a Dos Equis green-rimmed pint glass.

Decanting the beer could've gone a little better, so I must describe my pour as fairly cloudy and auburn in color. The head is craggy and dry with an appealing rocky surface. Bubbles slather against the inner glass walls causing blanket lace.

Steeped tea bags and rye earthiness characterize the prominent malt notes. Grains are evident, but smooth. I can detect wheat, too, amongst hearty barley grain. It blends well with a rustic Belgian yeast note that surfaces with light nuttiness, mustiness, and earthiness. Any hops are well-cloaked beneath a sea of aromatic malts. Quite the showcase.

Malty, but fruity esters from the yeast are seeping out, also. Apple and pear notes with browned fruity flesh counter with tea notes from the malt combo and the hops. There is a slight citrus-like twang that is probably humulus-induced. The booze is hush-hush. An all-around smooth drink with majestic flavor.

The mouthfeel is excellent. Smooth body with medium viscosity. The carbonation is velvety, yet exciting. Drinks very quickly, so enjoyably.

I was lukewarm about springing for the four-pack blindly, but I'm delighted by this first bottle. The other three will be enjoyed with ease.

thecheapies, Aug 19, 2013
Photo of outoffocus
4/5  rDev +3.6%

outoffocus, Aug 19, 2013
Photo of Kerrie
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Kerrie, Aug 18, 2013
Scythe & Sickle from Brewery Ommegang
87 out of 100 based on 834 ratings.