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Bison Organic Honey Basil - Bison Brewing

Not Rated.
Bison Organic Honey BasilBison Organic Honey Basil

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

81 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 81
Hads: 200
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 8.71%
Wants: 4
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bison Brewing visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 11-01-2005

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 81 | Hads: 200
Photo of Hopped_head
4.41/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Holy damn, is this beer refreshing. Cracked one open on a hot,summer day...next thing I know, they're all gone and I'm pretty drunk. An extremely drinkable beer at 6.0%abv. It's like drinking a really refreshing glass of ice tea, except in beer form! (251 characters)

Photo of iheartmyTHO
2.92/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

The basil flavor is rather subtle in my opinion. And there was something else about this beer, where the flavor felt a bit harsh on the palate. Perhaps this beer would taste better if it was paired with pizza or Italian food. (227 characters)

Photo of zookerman182
3.84/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is a golden orange with a one finger head.
Aroma is sweet herbs, malt, fake honey.
Taste is slight herb and spice with a light honey sweetness.
Mouthfeel is medium to full but no pleasant lingering flavors to speak of.
It's a solid beer but I couldn't drink more than a couple. (288 characters)

Photo of Crafts_and_recreation
4.16/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: Honey colored, highly effervescent pour maintains a consistent layer of a medium dense foam, retains a remarkable lacing

S: Clean, soft aroma of basil builds into a sharper note as it warms a bit, light malts, spicy herbal nose, barely perceptible hop profile, a little grassy

T: Spice comes through against a floral honey background, flavor finishes with a lingering and pleasant bitterness

M: Medium and smooth, though I wouldn't have minded this being a bit thinner, it is satiny and highly drinkable

O: Interesting brew, seems well executed and enjoyable. Not a go-to option, but surely one I'd like to have around. (626 characters)

Photo of silverking
3.76/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- light amber, 1/2 inch of coarse off white head, patchy lacing. Decent head retention. Soon there is just a thin ring of foam around the edge of the glass.

S- at first, it's pretty dismal, some malt with a faint herbal quality. Just give it a quick swirl in the glass, and bam, there's the basil. It's bright and clean, grassy and herbal. The honey doesn't seem to be there though.

T- basil, still wonderful. It transitions nicely into a floral sweetness and then into a very slight bitterness. The honey begins to peak through in the finish, but then its muddled by a triumphant comeback of sweet herbal goodness.

M- light, the finish is clean. Lots of prickly carbonation.

O- love the basil, but it left me wanting some more honey. (739 characters)

Photo of metter98
3.67/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On-tap at Hops Burger Bar, Greensboro, NC

A: The beer is very hazy yellowish amber in color and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that died down but never completely faded away.
S: Moderate aromas of basil leaves are present in the nose along with hints of ginger.
T: Like the smell, the taste is dominated by flavors of basil. Only hints of honey are perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is an easy drinking beer that would seem to make a good pairing with Italian food or a veggie burger. (612 characters)

Photo of mralphabet
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured at the Mellow Mushroom in Durham NC

A: Poured a clear orange color with a 1 finger head that settled to a nice thin layer with spotty lacing from start to finish.

S: First thing I'm getting is lemon peel with a little sweetness... at the very tail end I'm getting a little of the basil. Smells a little like herbal tea.

T: Sweet malt and lemon upfront with a little honey mid palette, there is a very slight hoppiness that kicks in near the end... also at the end is a touch of basil. Very complex set of flavors going on here, very herbal tea, just like the smell.

M: Light bodied with a nice carbonation and a very clean aftertaste.

D: Very enjoyable beer, light, refreshing, complex and goes great with pizza. I'll start looking for this one in bottles. (768 characters)

Photo of DrDemento456
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ow damn it not only did I find this late (released 6 months ago) but it has such a low rating. To top it off I paid $2.49 for the single.

A - Looks decent enough deep amber brown with a bit of floaties and hazy. The head is pretty decent for such an old brew giving me a 1/4 inch that settles to a thick lace ring.
S - It actually smells like a pretty good amber ale with a sweet honey tone and herbal pine. Not very off putting it smells nice.
T - Not having another other basil beer to compare it too I want to say its actually not bad. The basil at times is very herbal and grassy but the sweetness seems to balance pretty good and I am somewhat impressed that its not overly dry from the honey. Not very metallic or harsh I actually wonder why such a low rating.
M - Kind of thin and herbal. Drinakble.

Overall not that I would buy it again it was an interesting beer worth trying just to see how basil is incorporated in a beer. Its actually not as bad as other say. (973 characters)

Photo of Arithmeticus
2.58/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Had in bottle form, chez White

A: cloudy, dark amber, some head, modest lacing; good carb
S: perfumes of allspcie, nutmeg; no other parts of the beer hit the nose
T: sweet, nutmeg, honey; fall seasonal flavors; under the spicing is a diet sprite-like ale
M: thin mouthfeel

It's not all that good for a spice beer (which is not my style, anyway, but I tried to take that into account) (385 characters)

Photo of hreb
3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I'd never heard of Bison Organic Beer before, but I couldn't pass up this 12oz single brewed with basil. Will it be herbtastically delicious or will the honey create another sweet, bland brew?

Appearance is on the yellow side of orange with a thin orange-white head. Not quite clear. Aroma is pleasant and floral and suggests just a bit of sweetness. The flower in the nose doesn't suggest hops, but perhaps clover honey (or some other bee pollen source). The basil flavor is subtle and way in the background. I think the herb actually comes across in the bitterness more than anything else. Impressively, the honey contributes the flavor of honey, i.e. that stuff that makes honey not taste like sugar syrup, without contributing sweetness -- nor without contributing a load of fermentable sugars that dry out the beer entirely. No, the beer finishes just dry enough.

Plenty drinkable, but unfortunately there isn't anything beyond the very mild taste of basil to hold my interest. (984 characters)

Photo of Auraan
3.57/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured a cloudy amber with no head. Nothing amazing, but not horrible looking. Scents of malt, basil and a slight bit of honey. It's got a bit going on here, but it's not quite strong enough to get your anticipation up. Flavor begins with sweet malt and a yeasty ale character, moves into a slight bitterness and ends with the taste of fresh basil. Basil also dominates the aftertaste. It has a medicinal quality that reminds me of chewing fresh basil. It's not bad. Mouthfeel is light bodied with low carbonation. Standard, easy drinking feel. I liked this a lot more than I thought I would. The herbal flavors imparted by the basil really work with the sweet malt flavors and the dryness from the honey, making it a nice refreshing beer. It's a nice herbed beer to try if you don't want something too extreme. (811 characters)

Photo of mactrail
3.67/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark amber in the pint shaker with an unremarkable head. Sharply spritzy and rather tart. The herbal flavor comes on top of a warm malty taste. A flavor of green beans and honey in the aroma. Honey also proves to be a really nice flavoring here, contrary to the sweet 'n' nasty taste so often encountered.

The basil provides a perfumey complexity, though it's quite sharp and slides over to the acidic side. However, this must be the best basil beer I've had. It's a tough proposition but they made it drinkable. Also the only drinkable Bison beer I've had. On tap at Sea Rocket in San Diego. (593 characters)

Photo of Samuel906
2.61/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I was pretty excited to try this just because of how crazy the idea was. I've definitely never had a beer advertising basil as part of its formulation. Poured a nice amber color, slightly cloudy, but no head, and what little there was had no retention. Aroma is underwhelming; some honey, florals and a touch of pepper. Anyone who is claiming they smell basil is lying, or has never smelled fresh basil before. It's simply not there. Dry taste, mild honey, very very slight basil at the end. Mediocre hops. Mouthfeel is unremarkable.

Overall a strange beer; I wish it were a little more robust. If your going to do something weird that go for it all in. Even if the flavors end up not working, at least you went full force with the flavor instead of doing a psuedo unique beer like this. (789 characters)

Photo of flagmantho
3.55/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: medium orange hue with a moderate haze and a pretty strong effervescence. Head is a finger of pillowy ivory foam with a bit of an orange cast to it. Head doesn't have a whole lot of retention.

Smell: sweet malt with a bit of a toasty/biscuity quality to it and a definite aroma of basil. I have never had basil in a beer and I wanted to give it a whirl. It is actually not too bad, provided basil beer is what you are expecting. Maybe not the most successful experiment, but interesting nonetheless.

Taste: the basil works better in the flavor than in the aroma; I feel it is better-integrated. The malt is sweeter than the aroma, with the biscuitiness toned down a bit. All of that said, this is still a particularly weird beer. For me, basil is not a winning ingredient, but I applaud the experimentation here.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good level of carbonation and a satisfying, persistent creaminess. More evidence that this is a good beer, carefully crafted, but using an ingredient that just doesn't seem to work out.

Overall: if you really want a basil beer, then absolutely go for this one. However, don't be surprised at what you get -- this beer is absolutely as-advertised. (1,249 characters)

Photo of Cylinsier
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz

Pours clear amber with an off white film for a head.

Smells of caramel, ready malts, and mild herbal notes.

Caramel and buttered bread flavors mix with an herbal mild bitterness.

Medium to full body with prickly carbonation on the tongue.

A really good flavorful and unique ale, drinks easy and tastes good. Something I could drink regularly. (353 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
3.42/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pour is a reddish amber with a thin tan head. The smell is very much like an italian cafe, the basil is subtle but somehow very apparent, the honey is integrated well adding sweetness and depth, also notes of peppery spice and some oregano. Seems well balanced but just not aromas I like together or in beer. Taste is the same with notes of dough, this is basil pizza esq. the honey is subdued and the basil is forward with spice and oregano. Strange stuff but well made for what it is intended to be. (501 characters)

Photo of shand
3.62/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It came from ... the back of the fridge! Found this lonely looking Spring seasonal hanging out in the back of my fridge. Bison Organic Honey Basil pours out a red-amber color with a finger of head. The aroma is basically what the nose says. Honey and basil. On the tongue though ... hey, is this a pumpkin beer with honey? Of course, pumpkin beers very rarely taste of pumpkin, they taste of the various spices. And I'm getting this big-time behind the basil and the honey. The mouthfeel is light and highly carbonated, and the drinkability isn't all that great. Too much on the spice for me. Overall, less interesting than I expected to be honest. (648 characters)

Photo of The_Blodge
3.42/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Burnt orange color with a small head that dissipates quickly to virtually no head at all. Very clear.

S: Sweet basil and spice. Basil hits the nose right up front and has a very overbearing aroma.

T: Basil. It coats the younger and lingers. Basil has a distinct flavor and tends to overpower other flavors. Some more subtle orange/citrus.

M: Light/medium mouthfeel. Kind of creamy. Carbonation is nice and refreshing.

O: A novelty. A good beer if you would enjoy a basil beverage. I feel that the basil could have been more subtle and playful and not overwhelming. (571 characters)

Photo of YouSkeete
3.65/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber orange with a large, fluffy pale yellow head. Complicated mixture of honey, pumpkin, basil and caramel malt in the aroma. Big pumpkin and caramel flavor that floats into a big hit of basil spice on the first sip. Herbal, earthy, mildly spicy body with a malty, creamy mouthfeel. Mildly bitter, spicy finish. Very interesting brew, never really had anything like it. (376 characters)

Photo of JKuras
4.06/5  rDev +14%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Beautiful dark amber in color, half an inch of foamy head that quickly dissipates to just small traces after a minute. Slightly cloudy and good carbonation looks present.

Smell: Strong scents of sweet honey and malts present as well as some floral hops. I do get a good whiff of the basil here also. Also getting hints of cloves and cinnamon. Everything seems pretty well balanced. It definitely stands out from other brews because of the basil. This is a great smelling beer.

Taste: Tastes similar to the smell, sweet malts, more honey and basil, but more bitter hops than I was expecting on the finish. The bitter from the hops lingers for a good 20 seconds. The basil is definitely there but doesn’t overpower; almost has a cooling effect against the spicy bitter hops. A very interesting combination and pretty refreshing overall.

Mouthfeel: Plenty of carbonation, and feels good swishing around the mouth. Not too heavy but full of flavor.

Overall: Probably not for everyone, but I really enjoyed it. Very well balanced overall without being too complex, and I could probably have 2 or 3 in a session. Love the combination between the honey sweetness, biting hops, and earthy basil. A great beer to enjoy in the spring or summer months. (1,260 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky dark orange with a 1/2 inch foamy tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, basil, and some slight honey aromas. Taste is pretty sweet with some malt/grain flavors up front and an earthy basil spice flavor that lingers long after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is drinkable but definitely odd and not something I would get again. (552 characters)

Photo of Phelps
3.16/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

As one would expect from the name, this ale was created using organic honey and basil. Enjoyed in a shaker pint at Mellow Mushroom.

Perfectly clear copper, like a shiny new penny. A thin, sand-colored head quickly becomes a fuzzy ring.

In the nose: subtle yet bright basil, mild honey, a little caramel and some malty-sweet wort character. Very light.

Tastes like sweet honey steeped in basil. Mild floral hop bitterness balances a tangy, mildly sweet burnt sugar finish. Clean.

Smooth medium-light body; moderate, prickly carbonation; just a touch of fizz. No booze. Clean and crisp on the palate.

Honey Basil’s a little light for my tastes — I have to work too hard to get the flavor. The basil is nice, but I’d like more hops to mix with it. (757 characters)

Photo of mfavoino
3.55/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Light amber with a small white head that recedes to a rim.

Smell: Basil! Really big basil aroma with some toasted malts.

Taste: Sweet and strong basil flavor, following the nose. Herbal and grassy. Honey sweetness as it finishes.

Mouthfeel: Light body with a pleasant smoothness.

Overall: If the basil flavor attracts you, give it a try. A unique profile for the palate. (388 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.94/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured an amber color with a light white cap, a few bubbles and light ring around the glass

S: There is no doubt basil is dominant in this beer. A little bit of honey to accompany the name

T: A little sweetness upfront with basil, more basil and basil on the finish backed up with a light honey sweetness and graham cracker.

M: Lighter bodied beer with a lot of taste and rather intriguing. A good lawnmower beer.

O: I am not a fan of the style but this is one I would drink again. (489 characters)

Photo of jtierney89
2.3/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I've been wanting to brew a beer with basil for a while now so I'm excited to try this one. Semi-hazy orange marmalade hue. half finger white head. Smells like basil. Straight up basil.

Kind of a one trick pony of a beer but the basil taste is different and refreshing. You can tell its a beer with some light graininess but other than that it just tastes like liquid basil. I'm picking up none of the honey. As much as I love basil, this beer isn't really anything great. just a basil showcase. slightly overspiced finish. If you love basil or beers that remind you of pizza you'll love it, otherwise it's just a novelty.

Overall very pretty sweet which is probably due to all the basil. (691 characters)

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Bison Organic Honey Basil from Bison Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 81 ratings.