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Sah'tea - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

595 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 595
Hads: 1,798
Avg: 3.95
pDev: 25.06%
Wants: 186
Gots: 241 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Sahti |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DarkerTheBetter on 09-28-2008

This Ancient Ale is a modern take on a 9th-century Finnish beer.

The wort for Sah'tea is caramelized over white-hot river rocks, and the beer is fermented with a German weizen yeast. In addition to juniper berries foraged from the Finnish countryside, Sah'tea is flavored with black tea, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and black pepper.

The spicing is subtle and balanced, and Sah'tea is a highly-quaffable, truly unique brew with a full mouthfeel.

Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 595 | Hads: 1,798
Photo of BierStein711
5/5  rDev +26.6%

This is a beer I will never forget. I drank it after I had some of the worst news in my life, and celebrated the upcoming victory I'll have once this journey is complete.

This was a draught serving,and it's golden color reminded me of a Belgian wit, but the flavors reminded me of a nice Gin. If you like gin and weissbier seek this out.

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Photo of exilio
5/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Okay, we all know that specialty beers that add fruit and spices end up a lot of times not tasting like beer..more like fruit juice with a kick.

Sah'tea is none of those things.

The Sah'tea from DFH is simply amazing. Not overly fruity. Not overly spiced. Still taste like a beer...from first sip to last drop, a rare treat for the senses. Buy two bottles and share with a friend.


Just noticed The Bros have not imbibed yet...really?! C'mon, guys!

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Photo of cfoley
5/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Awsome brew Loved It!!! Such a rich beautifull beer loved all the flavors that just kept coming with every sip, It cant get much better than this folks . Im a fan flavorfull beers and this one hit a Home Run !!! Its kinda ornagey twang , light sweet floral notes as it warmed up ,this is one you can just keep drinking and drinking and drinking and never get tiered of it .

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Photo of JayS2629
4.97/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The only fault I can give this is that it doesn't taste like a beer. However, it is absolutley delicious.

A- A dep golden amber with a hazy sediment.

S- Spicy. The ulitmate chai stands out on the front with a bit of orange in there somewhere. Sweet malty and deep overall taste. Clove stands out.

T- Liquid candy. Nice carbonation. A bit strong on the fore-front but easy on the aftertaste. Ginger comes in with a nice dance to the carbonation.

M- The carbonaton is very nice to the mouth. Slightly creamy. Smooth.

D- The juniper berry brings a nice sweetness and pine feel. It has a spicy finish that is a bit dry but the orange overtones and the background of of a honey calms things down to a very mellow drink. It doesn't taste like beer. The chai tea is overwhelmingly good. Its like a chai tea with carbonation poured into a very nice medium bodied brew.

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Photo of extremelybland
4.97/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed 2 pints of this at the brewpub alongside some of the best calamari you'll find anywhere. I had zero expectations on this one, since I had never heard of it, never seen it, and knew nothing. One never knows what to expect from Sam and the boys.

Poured a cloudy yellow with an orange tinge, thin white lacing remains intact.

Aroma bright banana and lemon; sour... obviously a wheat yeast doing the work on this one.

Taste.. thick rolling mouth-feel meets perfect carbonation to form an almost neutral feel. Becomes more and more quaffable with every sip. Flavor hits with a barnyardy orange with an amazing clean finish of lemon and gentle spice. DFH says we've got india black tea in here.. and indeed the finish reminds me of a sip of clean hard water black tea. Hops barely show in the background but provide a most perfect balance. Amazing!

Drinkability will rival anything you can think of, and sitting there with their buttermilk calamari made for a near euphoric experience.

PLEASE somebody tell them to put this in a champagne bottle and let us all have some more of what might be the most well-balanced thing to ever flow from our friends at Dogfish Head!

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Photo of foggylovesbeer
4.95/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Split a bottle of this last night. Poured a soft white head which quickly faded, which was expected. Big aroma, can definitely smell the Chai in this beer, but it is not overwhelming. The spices from the Chai give it an almost pumpkin ale-like quality to the smell, but the taste is thinner. The 9% abv is hardly noticed on this, good blend of flavors on this one. I enjoyed this beer thoroughly and will be picking up a few more bottles to share the joy.

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Photo of RockyTopHeel
4.85/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Punchline up front: one of the best tasting experiences I've had in a long, long time.

Straw gold in color with a nice, bubbly head. The chai is obvious in the nose, along with some candy sugar, yeast, and light malts.

Chai is big up front, but the more I drink, the more the juniper comes out. Utterly complex, incredibly enjoyable - there's so much going on here, and it's all very, very good.

One of DFH's best experiments of all time.

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Photo of ZX6Chris
4.85/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A-No head. Bright golden, hazy.

S-Lots of spice. Cardimim. Nutmeg. Berries. Sweet. Honey.

T-The honey comes through in the flavor. Not bitter at all, I don't think there's any hops in here. Sweet but not cloying. Chai Tea comes through.

M-Medium bodied, good carbonation in the mouth.

D-Not too light, easy drinking.

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Photo of iRoy
4.82/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tastes incredible. The juniper berries really stand out and it definitely doesn't taste like 9% ABV. I couldn't stop drinking it. It is very drinkable but due to the high price I can't see it becoming a session beer. The smell is also incredible, the juniper berries really come through. Definitely one of my favorite beers.

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Photo of kirkmichel
4.82/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle from Greens in Atlanta, GA

A - A very cloudy and pale amber, with chunky sediment floating in it. Which would be OK except the last chunky beer I had tasted like vomit. Has a nice volume of lacy foam that's kind of off white.

S - Strong lemon and sweet spice (just like chai tea!). A big ginger smell with some cinnamon and maybe clove mixed in. This will get a 5.0 score from me, as I believe it hits the mark on what I expect from a spiced ale (and I'd consider this a fruited/spiced ale).

T - Very complex fruit and malt - like citrus fruit and cherry with a sweet malt and gingersnaps on the finish. And honey. Lots of honey.

M - A carbonated zing on the tip of your tongue at first, but after that all the sweetness and taste is on the sides and back. It's viscous without being too heavy. And surprise: the chunkiness is not even evident!

D - I'm not sure what the ABV is on this, but I betcha it's high because of all the fruit and sweetness...and I can hardly taste the alcohol. It is delicious and I love it. However, it is like a party in your mouth, so I'm thinking it will kill your tastebuds after two. I'm going to try and see....it will be definitely worth it!

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Photo of bszern
4.8/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had on tap.

Poured a hazy golden color with some lacing.

Smell is much like a wheat beer, with some spicy notes.

Taste is sort of fruity, and the wheat yeast presents itself well. A little bit of spice is present in the aftertaste.

This is an awesome beer...I have been very hesitant to try any of DFH's "Ancient Ales," but after drinking this phenom I will have to change my approach to them!

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Photo of newk340
4.79/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: a hazy burnt gold, thin foam ring coats the surface.

S: a wicked explosion of various flavors, a stew of hops, malts, berries, chai teas, and a plethora of other flavors that defy description.

T: what doesnt this beer have? hops, malts, cloves, coriander, berries, chai tea, spices, citrus... and the list goes on. what in the world just happened to my tastebuds?

MF/D: epic. smooth, bitter, carbonated, dry, sweet... all at once. a symphony on the senses. thank you sir, may i have another?

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Photo of psumjl269
4.77/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 750ml bottle.

A: Golden color, almost like wheat. Some sedminent.

S: This beer smells like no other to me. I definitely smell cloves and some tea. There are many other spices that produce a wonderful aroma.

T: This is a very unique beer. It has a tea aftertaste. Also, you can definitely taste all of the spices blended in the beer.

M: This beer is as light tasting as its color would indicate. Nicely carbonated, but not a ton of head. Very crisp mouthfeel.

O: I look forward to the release of this beer every year. It is one of a kind (like a lot of dogfish brews). Overall I'd rate this beer very highly because of its excellent taste, crisp mouthfeel, and uniqueness.

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Photo of patre_tim
4.74/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Light amber, tones of large floaties that whitish all through the glass. Little to no off white head. Some carbonation evident.

S: Exotic spices like cardamon and nutmeg, along with an additional white wood glue scent, and a Belgian yeast scent. Its lively and bright.

T: Follows the nose and gets even more intense with a sour and slightly bitter limburger like bite, and the spices which are many linger in the mouth. The drying tannic quality of the black tea is also present, perhaps the alcohol adds to this drying nature. Other than this, the alcohol is very well hidden. Exotic and spicy.

M: Medium, drying yet syrupy, medium carbonation.

O: I really like this one and find it redemptive of many of Dogfishead’s history based brews which I found disappointing This one is packed with taste and leaves me wanting to drink more.

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Photo of GreenJetta912
4.74/5  rDev +20%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a 2 finger head in a goblet with a vigorous pour.

Smells straight up like Banana nut bread.

Taste is amazing and complex. Bread, bananas, grapes, apple, pear are all balanced in there. Spice bomb. Warming quality. Very earthy.

Finishes off bready and slightly dry up front but a sweet end with a nutty finish.

As you continue to sip on it you pick up on more flavors that you didn't before. I wish I bought another bottle.

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Photo of WMEugene
4.74/5  rDev +20%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pours a rich, hazy copper color with sediment in it. A thick head which slowly dissipates to a thin layer. Nice lacing.

S - Strong notes of fruit, herbs and spices. The juniper berries do stand out. I'm also getting some of the chai tea as well. There's a lot going on here, but it is very, very nice.

T - A bit bready with strong herbs and spices up front (just like the nose). The juniper berries once again stand out. It's a little syrupy in the taste, which is accentuates the flavors.

M - Smooth and syrupy with a medium/full body. Carbonation levels are great and this is one easy drinking and delicious beer.

O - DFH's Sah'tea is one of my two favorites of their "Ancient beer" series (along with Theobroma). It's unique and delicious...well worth your time. I wish this was a regular lineup, in six-packs type of beer; but I'll enjoy my 750mL. Well done!

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Photo of JamnesCameron
4.72/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Received as a Christmas present today. Enjoying after returning home from dinner with the in-laws.

Poured into a New Holland High Gravity series tulip glass.

Pours a hazy light golden color, almost "wit-like" with a fine, creamy white head of about two fingers. Head drops after a few minutes to a thin layer of foam. Nice lacing on the glass.

Aromas of a spice and tea shop. Cardamom, cinnamon, dark brewed tea, green herbs (bay leaf?), black pepper, and juniper berries.

First sip is of a silky herbed tea, with cardamom, cinnamon, orange, some black pepper and herbs on the finish. Some slight carbonic bite, and a hint of juniper. Everything is done with a nice balance, nothing too aggressive or over the top.

Mouthfeel is silky, creamy, medium bodied, with a slight prickle of carbonation on the tongue and roof of the mouth.

Very interesting, very drinkable beer. Nothing to cause palate fatigue. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of Crimtor
4.72/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'll start by saying I'm a huge chai tea fan and I don't know if this is really a "beer lovers" beer, but apparently it fits my pallet perfectly

A- A very clear amber color nice lacing on the edges

S- Smells like sweet nectar, some light hops, and huge spicy nutmeg (exactly like chai tea), rounds off with me wanting to wear the smell as a cologne.

T- Well no surpise it taste like Chai Tea with a tiny bit of 60 Minute IPA in it. aka awesome. I enjoyed it so much I got a another chalice and bought a bottle and both were excellent too. Might be too sweet/spicy for some, but those people aren't me.

M- A Very thin, very drinkable beer.

O- One of my favorite low alcohol beers on the planet. If you like chai tea you have to try this. I also think it's got a little similar taste to the Noble Rot so if you like that you should at least try this.

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Photo of dashmartino
4.72/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This stuff is great! Bartender poured it for me, kind of looked like a weizen at first. Smelled like a weizen, kind of tasted like one. I've never had a saison before. This one is really drinkable, wonderful sweet taste. Drink this one before it's gone, or tell dogfish head to make this the beer that makes it out of the Rehoboth Brewpub into production!

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Photo of mikeg67
4.7/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle. Pours hazy orange with a lasting white head. Aroma is of yeast, spices, sweet malt, fruit and berries with hints of tea. Flavors are similar to aroma. Full, smooth body. Very interesting, complex, delicious brew. I went out and bought 3 more bottles after I tried this brew.

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Photo of socon67
4.69/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a tulip at The Good Life, Massapequa NY.

A - Golden with slight carbonation. No lacing at all. Very thin white foam on top.

S - Wow. Scents of chai and black tea dominate the nose. Behind that is an herbal fragrance of spice. This is truly an example of what is possible with bold concepts in craft beer. Sam, I am impressed.

T - The spicy notes continue through to the taste. Very flavorful, with a spicy iced tea feel. Tastes of cloves, bananas, cinnamon, and peppery feel. For those that like an earthy, herbal vibe this is Nirvana.

M - Rediculously smooth. A spicy grate on the back of the tongue. Feels medium bodied, and masks the ABV very well.

O - I just loved this beer. The profile was like nothing I've had before. And the qulaity of the beer makes me wonder if all sahti are quite this good. I've wondered if DFH was a bit overhyped and beers like this say otherwise. Just great execution.

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Photo of dfillius
4.69/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Moderate pour yields 1.25 fingers of off-white, fizzy head with poor retention. Better retention please. Hazy, greenish amber is actively effervescent. Fairly good looking, but green color is kind of weird.
S: Strong juniper aroma! Some citrus too. Reminds me of Stone/Nogne/Jolly Pumpkin collaboration or Nogne O God Jule. Some Belgian fruit esters in there too. Smells nice and fairly unique.
T: Good caramel sweetness, a tad sour and funky with good bittering too! Some warm estery fruitiness. I don't taste the chai really. One of the best I've had from Dogfish Head.
M: Expectorant, full, a tad sour. Great. Some warmth in there too. Nicely dry. Nice puckering and expectorant are highlights. Feel warmth in my belly too.
D: Very high. I would order another and will definitely buy again. Strength is the only thing keeping it away from perfect drinkability.

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Photo of nickthetick
4.67/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a cloudy orange into my Chimay glass (having those later) with little suspended particles floating around. Thin white skim of bubbles on top for a head and no lacing.

S: spicy goodness! Clove, cinnemon and nutmeg make appearances along with nice citrus and pear notes.

T: a lot like the nose but you get a better appreciation for the fruity esthers, some crazy good flavors. Bananas, pears, pineapple, and mixed christmas spices. The clove and pear stand out most and linger on the tongue the most.

MF: this beer is heavy, creamy, chewy and has the right amount of effervescence.

D: I will defiantly be keeping my eye on thee schedule to see when this will hit shelves but don't see myself going great lengths to get it (IE out of state or trading).

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Photo of Swazzle
4.67/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the best beers Dogfish Head has to offer. Had on tap at the Rehoboth Brewpub

A - Amberlike in color, it came out with a nice head with slow retention. Left a nice lacing on the glass that remained sticky while drinking.

S - Big on the caramel and booze smells, with subtle hints of cinnamon and clove and tea as well.

T - Just wow. as an avid tea drinker, this beer was a dream come true after the first sip. With all the spices and flavors of a Chai tea, a home run in my book. Strong notes of cinnamon and pretty sweet for a beer, but this is an exception where it's not a bad thing.

M - Medium bodied with the spiciness of a Chai tea. Goes down pretty easy for a 9% beer.

O - One of my favorite beers hands down. Simply fantastic. If you have ever had and enjoyed a Chai tea, this is a must try.

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Photo of threeviews
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml crowned bottle (bottled on date: 03-11-13) into a 16oz Dogfish Head Signature Glass

A- A conservative pour yields a hazy orange beer with a 1/2-to-3/4 finger's worth of a frothy, white head. Although it died rapidly, a film remained on top due to the fact that this is a nucleated glass.

S- All the aromas of Chai Tea! Honey, melon, ginger, cinnamon and a hint of clove

T- Honey-like malty sweetness and banana (yeast) hit first, followed by a lingering, spicy kick (cinnamon, ginger, clove) and then is met with dry, resinous and fruity (juniper berry & cardamom) finish. An absolutely spledid balance of sweet and spicy. As for the 9% ABV...I cannot find so much as a trace (in the flavor or aroma)!

M- Medium, yet delicate carbonation allows all the flavors to penetrate the palate and leave a long, lingering finish with all the flavors mixing in concert.

O- For those who have read my other reviews (especially of DFH beers), it will come as no surprise that this is yet another hands down winner for me. For their Ancient Ale series, Sah'Tea ranks (every so slightly) behind my favorite, Theobroma. If this is what a bottle with 10 months of age tastes like, then I cannot fathom what it will taste like fresh...and cannot wait to find out!

DISCLAIMER: I am a fan of Chai Tea and would enthusiastically encourage all of those who also enjoy that beverage to investigate this beer. However, if you are indifferent or better yet, dislike Chai Tea altogether, you may not necessarily enjoy this offering...but would always welcome those to challenge their palates as you just might surprise yourself!

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Sah'tea from Dogfish Head Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 595 ratings.