Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...
Dismiss Notice
Join The Buzz! Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest BeerAdvocate updates delivered to your inbox.

Saison Du BUFF - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Saison Du BUFFSaison Du BUFF

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

432 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 432
Hads: 1,532
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.69%
Wants: 46
Gots: 200 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SaCkErZ9 on 08-05-2010

Plans call for Saison du BUFF to be a 6% alc/vol Saison brewed with parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. This beer will be brewed three times, once at each brewery using the same recipe.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 432 | Hads: 1,532
Photo of HattedClassic
3.81/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The beer pours a decent small bubbly and white foamy head that dissipates quickly but still leaves a decent film on the top of the beer. The beer itself is an opaque yellow orange that is reminiscent of orange juice. The beer is very cloudy.

The beer smell is very complex and very spicy for a saison. However, the spices used work very well. In addition to usual earthy hop notes and wheat notes, the beer has very strong rosemary notes that seem to dominate the nose. The thyme is also there and gives it a slightly oungent earthy smell to it. The parsley is barely noticeable in the smell.

The beer taste is not as complex as the smell is, unfortunately. The bitter hop taste and the earthy smell from the wheat are stronger and do a better job of mixing the various notes. The rosemary is more subdued and more present in the aftertaste than in the taste. The thyme and parsley are also stronger and some sage notes pop out as well. The flavor combination is much better in the taste than in the smell. There also appears to be a slight alcohol feel.

The mouthfeel is surprisingly heavy for a saison. The beer is smooth with very little carbonation to give it a little bit more texture.

Overall, a pretty good and very unique saison. I'd definitely recommend picking one up when you can. (1,296 characters)

Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Cloudy orange/gold, rocky to soapy white head. Still (no carbonation). Boring bottle, just like all DFH. BOOOO.

S: Citrus hops- lemon, mango- vanilla out of left field, spicy herb blend. Bright, clean aromas.

T: Same as above with the addition of mint and discernible oregano. A great potpourri of spices, but all a bit muddled. Lasting herbacious finish.

M: Prickly but brief carbonation, light bodied.

O: Not a saison, but intriguing (would you expect anything less from these two?). Herbs and hops are nicely presented, so long as you're not a gardener trying to pick out each one. (591 characters)

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into signature tulip glass, bottled on 6/10/2014. Pours fairly hazy deep golden color with a 1 finger dense and fluffy white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big lemon, pear, white grape, pepper, clove, herbal, floral, grass, cracker, bread, and herbal/yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity/earthy yeast, herbal spicing, and pale malt notes; with good strength. Taste of lemon, pear, white grape, pepper, clove, herbal, floral, grass, cracker, bread, and herbal/yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy yeast spice/herbal spice flavors on the finish; with lingering notes of lemon, pear, white grape, pepper, clove, herbal, floral, grass, cracker, bread, and herbal/yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, herbal spicing, and pale malt flavors; with a great malt/yeast/spice balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately crisp, and slightly bready mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent herbal spiced saison. All around great complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, herbal spicing, and pale malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering. (1,520 characters)

Photo of Act25
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lovely competition between 3 great brewers. This is my 1st.

A: Happy hazed honey body with champagne like bubbles, drive a moderately lasting tight head that leaves lots of lace.
S: I cannot pick out more than thyme and sage, over the classic yeasty, fruity nose, but it's good and inviting. (and good for you!)
T: Follows the dry herbal nose but gets better. Sharp, rising, exciting bitterness perfectly counterbalance the malt sweetness. Great see-saw of sweet-bitter-lemony-dry. Well done!
F: Plenty of mouth feel, and nice finish. Great with cheese or dessert.

Extremely well made. (592 characters)

Photo of matridium
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Really good.

I think the best between Victory, and Stone.

I really like the play of the parsley, sage, Rosemary and thyme and the hops. well done!!! (153 characters)

Photo of mikeg67
3.67/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours hazy golden with tall, long lasting, fluffy white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of funky yeast, bready malt, ripe pears, spices and some herbal hops. Body is medium and crisp. Herbs, spices, funky yeast, bready malt and ripe fruit fill the mouth. Finish is long and spicy. Interesting brew, but too much herbs for me. (342 characters)

Photo of StoutHunter
3.54/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I picked up a bottle of Dogfish Head's Saison Du BUFF a couple weeks ago for $2.89 at Cork N Ale. This is my first time seeing this beer around and I thought I would take a chance on it, so lets see how it goes. 2014 Vintage. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- The label looks nice, it's got a simple design to it that represents all three brewerys that collaborated on this beer, I think it's just a little eye catching. It poured a cloudy yellow color that took on more of a golden color when held to the light with two fingers worth of creamy and slightly bubbly off white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left some nice rings of lacing behind. This is a good looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the Saison yeast being the first to show up and it imparts a typical saison yeast like aroma with just a slight bit of funky wet hay that leads into a peppercorn and grassy aroma. Up next comes a fruity aroma with a nice apricot and lemon aroma seeming to stick out the most and it goes right into the the herbs with them all coming together to make one flavor neither one sticks out the most. This beer had a pretty nice aroma, but the strong saison yeast and strong herbs were a little intense at first.

T- The taste seems to be a little similar to the aroma, but much lighter and it starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with some grainy and bready malts being the first to show up and it leads right into some saison yeast which is much lighter than it was in the aroma and it's not nearly as spicy or funky. Up next comes a light fruity flavors that's similar to the fruity aspect that I got in the aroma, but it's much lighter and it's followed by the herbs which are a little lighter than they were in the aroma, but they impart that same mixed herb aspect. On the finish there's a lighter amount if bitterness with a grainy bready, saison yeast, light fruity and herbal aftertaste. This was a nice tasting beer, but I was expecting it to be a little more intense like the aroma.

M- Fairly smooth, crisp, slightly prickly, dry on the finish, medium bodied with a slightly higher amount of medium carbonation. This beer had a nice mouthfeel that worked well with it.

Overall I thought this was a nice beer and a nice example of the style, the herb worked well with it and they weren't overpowering when it came to the taste, but there was nothing about it that really wowed me, i thought it was nice, but it wasn't anything special. This beer had ok drinkability, it was fairly smooth, crisp, slightly prickly, dry on the finish, not too filling and the taste doesn't do the best job at holding my attention, one is enough for me, I don't have any urge to drink another one in a row. What I like the most about this beer was the appearance and aroma, they were both good and I thought the aroma was pretty unique and a little intense. What I like the least about this beer was the taste and the drinkability, they held this beer back a little and they could use a little work. I wouldn't buy this beer again, I'm glad I tried it, but it isn't something that I feel the need to revisit anytime soon and I can't say I would recommend it as a great Saison. All in all I wasn't impressed with this beer, the combination of herbs with this saison wasn't bad, but it wasn't something that really wowed me and in the end I wanted a little more out of this beer. It's not my favorite Dogfish Head beer and it's for sure not a favorite of the style. I appreciate the effort it took to make this beer, keep up the solid and unique work. (3,715 characters)

Photo of Tone
4.19/5  rDev +8.8%

Pours a cloudy, straw/gold color. 1/4 inch head of a white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of sage, pale malt, hint of hop, hint of sweet malt, hint of yeast, and a hint of rosemary. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of strong pale malt, yeast, slight rosemary, slight sage, and a hint of sweet malt. Overall, good appearance, aroma, body, and blend. The herbs are easily discernible in both body and aroma, but are not overpowering. (496 characters)

Photo of Huffs
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

Poured to a nice full head with great retention and good lacing. Appearance was cloudy with a golden straw color. Aroma Is very floral with some pine and bread notes. Taste hade some herbal notes, as expected, with the most pronounced being sage. Also had some bread and grass notes. Mouthfeel eas full and creamy. Nice clean aftertaste. This beer would go great with a roasted chicken. (392 characters)

Photo of ONUMello
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip
A: Golden color with a generous two-finger head that slowly settles
S: Malt, herbs (esp sage) and yeast
T: Herbs on top of herbs. Here the rosemary comes through initially followed by thyme. Behind that is bread and yeast. Actually rosemary herb bread is a pretty good summary. Bold flavors
M: Medium-bodied but with a kick from the herbs
O: Distinct and solid. Likely won't become a regular but worth a try (439 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
3.61/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle, from the cellar room at the Liquor Mart in Glendale, Colorado.

This beer pours a mildly hazy, medium golden yellow hue, with a teeming tower of puffy, loosely foamy, and certainly bubbly off-white head, which leaves a few minor instances of streaky sudsy lace around the glass as it evenly bleeds off.

It smells of pungent Irish stew spices - yup, rosemary and earthy thyme, with a lesser funky sage element, one which segues easily enough into the inherent yeastiness, all lording over a sturdy enough grainy, slightly bready pale malt. The taste is less spice-oriented - more blended, the proclaimed herbs acting like they've been simmering for the better part of the day, rather than just recently added - which allows the gritty, grainy, and not all that sweet pale Belgian-esque malt to safely come out of hiding.

The carbonation is dense in its softly supportive frothiness, the body an engaging medium weight, and smooth, in that Belgian spice and up-ticked alcohol sense - so, not really. It finishes off-dry, the malt not letting the lingering stew spices out and about without at least a modicum of supervision.

I've got the feeling that this is an aged bottle, and for how long, I do not know - stated solely because of the timeliness of my encountering it. The spices are not only St. Patrick's Day-friendly, but (Canadian) Thanksgiving as well, so this is a seasonal offering, in a manner of speaking. At any rate, nice to finally have gotten the chance to hit this particular DFH collaboration. (1,528 characters)

Photo of cjgiant
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%

On tap for this review, had it when origibally released, and did a tasting of all three versions in past. This review:

Pours a hazy straw-to-golden with a fair amount if soapy head. Lacing is pretty significant, and the beer sustains a nice film of head. The nose isn't as strong as I recall, but I do get a bit of Belgian yeast funk, and some hints if the spices they use. I also get a light lemon scent.

The taste hits a bit more earthy than I'd expect from the nose, but it doesn't really have that farmhouse taste I sorta expect from a saison. I do get a bit of tartness; it's not really lemon, but something like it. After this initial taste, the beer does turn a bit dry and I get more of the spices.

Overall, I have the impression they mellowed this out from the initial offering (I realize I'm probably imagining it). I recall the spices really reminding me more of thanksgiving, maybe just the sage was a bit stronger. The smells and tastes were never overpowering, but they are muted in this pour. A decent beer that I can leave until next year's offering to try again. (1,091 characters)

Photo of daveruman
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%

lots of carbonation on opening,

poured into my Dogfish IPA glass.

A: lots of head at first, but goes away quick after sitting a bit. Carb. bubbles, golden honey colored. 3.7

S: smells like parsley and thyme, maybe slightly rosemary, with an overall fruity hops feel.

T: tastes a lot like it smells. Holding on tongue is salty/farmhousey, goes down clean. Slight hoppy bitter aftertaste. 3.8

M: Carbonated with an herby spicyness. 3.7

O: has a nice character to it. The ingredients complement each other well in this saison. I'd drink it again, but wouldn't go out of my way to. 3.8 (591 characters)

Photo of beerbully
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Poured into cuvee glass from bottle

A-Light yellowish hazy beer. Minimal head with no retention. not much lacing (3.75)

S-tropical /citrus fruits, some mild herbs, (3.75)

T- herbs come through along with some lemon notes.a bit of pine, spicy, peppery, floral notes of a saison slight bitter finish (4.0)

M- fizzy carbonation that complements the flavors. Crisp, light refreshing (4.0)

O-the components are representative of the style with a nice herbal touch that comes through in greater quantities with each sip(3.75) (531 characters)

Photo of carlos_fleico
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%

350ml bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden color. About one finger of a white foamy head with almost no retention at all, dissipates very quickly. High carbonation, streams of bubbles are visible coming from the bottom of the glass. Almost no lacing left. (3.75)

S: Very strong smell of thyme, ocimum, sage and rosemary. After many sniffs, I still can't detect the parsley. The malty character of this beer is pretty much all hidden by the strong herbs smell. I can feel grassy and spicy hints and also lime zest. The aroma itself is very refreshing. More so than the taste. (3.5)

T: I thought the taste would completely follow the nose, but it isn't quite that way. Thyme, sage and rosemary stand out upfront, but the malty character appears later on, with a lot of carbonation. Belgian yeast is strong, giving the beer a touch of funkiness. The alcohol is pretty much undetectable. (3.5)

M: Light-bodied, very crisp and dry. Malty and bready aftertaste, with a herbal touch. (4.25)

O: Even though I found this brew very interesting and unique, the addition of the herbal spices wasn't great. A more citrusy touch and a less herbal touch would make this beer better in my opinion. Still refreshing, not as much as other Saisons, but very unique. I would have this again, but there are many other Saisons I would pick over this one. (3.5) (1,374 characters)

Photo of barczar
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%

Brilliant golden with a moderate ivory head. Notes of lemon, thyme, and rosemary are accompanied by a touch of must and sage. Flavor is savory, with sage and parsley cleanliness forming the base, and lemon and thyme hitting mid palate. Rosemary carries into the lightly bitter finish, and notes of mint. Nice savory beer that I'll buy again and hold back for thanksgiving dinner. (379 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%

With the clanging of the head from Dogfish Head, Stone and Victory- its quite clear with the first sip that the character, spirit and imagination of Dogfish Head takes center stage with this clever saison that employs spices that are typically reserved for pot roasts and pork loin.

Yet in a slim Belgian-esque taste, the spices project with such sprucy desertion that the saison beneath is hard to find. The rosemary, thyme and parsley lights the palate up like a Christmas tree. Despite its hazy golden appearance and creamy eggshell foam that seem to carry the classic farmhouse ale appearance, its nose and early palate is all about the herb.

Its partly creamy, partly zesty carbonation gives slight rise to underlying sweet maltiness of honey and light bread but as those bubbles begin to pop, the middle enlivens the spices and allow them to pull ahead of the balance with little challenge from underlying pear, apple and grape esters.

Finishing creamy-dry, the beer's relative medium body is slow to relax and is content to retain low levels of malt sweetness and firm textures to linger on the palate. This buffers the effect of its sprucy perfume and might be somewhat of its saving grace. (1,201 characters)

Photo of TheBeerSipper
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

Appearance - Pours nice yellow haze with a half inch foamy head

Smell - You can smell the spices - Sage and Thyme stand out

Taste - The spices are tasty but not too strong. Goes down light and crisp.

Overall - Very enjoyable. It is on the top of the list of Saisons for me my friends.

Until Next Time

The Beer Sipper (326 characters)

Photo of lordofstarside
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz to a snifter, bottled 6/10/14

Pours a pale gold with a finger of foam that has receded pretty quickly. Heavy carbonation stems from the center of the glass. High visibility, okay lacing

Smell's sort of like my spice rack. Lots of sage, rosemary, and pine. Behind all the herbs is a light note of grass and citrus- mostly lemon. Finishes with some pepper nuances, light touch of alcohol

Taste translates well, hits upfront with heavy herbs- rosemary, thyme, sage and pine. Lemon grass behind that which is very subtle, followed by a touch of Belgian funk. Finishes with a hint of alcohol

Feel is light, a little dry. Alcohol hidden, drinkable

Overall I'm really not crazy about it. Not fresh anyway. I had a bottle of Stone's version that had been aged about 15 months the other week I enjoyed a lot more. The herbal notes were quite faded, albeit still present. There's much stronger lemon and citrus tastes which really hijack the beer, and change it for the better IMO. If I see anymore of these around I'll snatch a couple to lay down for a year. I'd give it overall a 3.5 fresh and a 4 aged, so for the overall score I met in the middle (1,151 characters)

Photo of utopiajane
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours hazy and yellow with a soft pastel lightness to the appearance. A fat white head of foam that never falls completely and leaves lots of bubbles in a layer on top. Nose is light sweet biscuit and a sugary smell form malt. Then some savory herbal from the herbs that have been added. The nose is open and airy and light. Some hop floral. Taste is excellent. It has a a delicate malt with a soft and silken body. A few bubbles and an overall creaminess. The malt is a sweeetned biscuit and the herbs are prominent. The sage stands out the most and I love sage. They tickle the palate and make you think of herbal teas. The malt sweetness stands side by side with the herbs so that they do not become too pungent or loud in the drink. There is a sweet bit of lemon peel that comes forward as this warms and again in the after taste. This beer has an all over dryness and finishes with a light bitterness in the flavor as much as in the mouthfeel. The sweet lemon resonates in the aftertaste with the herbs. I loved this and thought it was one of the most unique beers I have had in this style. (1,095 characters)

Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a lovely hazy amber color. A solid finger of head, no lacing.

Smell is a little strange. There's a very herbal tea smell in this beer, nose dominated by thyme and sage. Parsley and rosemary take a backseat. And considering this is a collaboration between three breweries that work well with hops, it surprises me that there's no hop character in the smell.

No hop bitterness in the taste either. But the herbal tea-ness of it is very much there. It's intriguing to say the least. It's also quite tasty. Possibly the most unique tasting saison I've had.

Mouthfeel is a little on the syrupy side. Again, sort of like strong tea.

Overall, this is a unique beer from three great breweries. Would I have it again? Maybe, but I'm not running out the door in my boxer shorts to get more. (791 characters)

Photo of plaid75
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Lark, East Northport, NY.

Poured clear brassy hue with one finger frothy white head. There was very good retention and lacing.

The smell featured heavy esters - white pepper, dandelion and ginger.

The taste was likewise super estery with an herbal hop finish.

The mouthfeel was toward the fuller side of the style.

Overall a complex drinking experience. (379 characters)

Photo of patre_tim
4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Golden with a green tinge, little fine bubbled carbonation and a very light haze. Whopping huge rocky head of 4 fingers melts like snow, very slowly.

S: Lemon zest, green herbs like sage, tarragon, rosemary, mint and parsley. Belgian yeasts, all dance in a balanced fashion and are subtle and not overwhelming.

T: Wonderful balance of the herbs and Belgian yeasts. Getting again the sage, rosemary and parsley, and the bitterness of the thyme. Light sweet, light bitter, perfectly refreshing and light herbal beer.

M: Light body, medium low carbonation.

O: Excellent brew, it remains still one of my favourite saisons. I had the Stone version over a year and a half ago, and like this version equally. Drank July 30th, 2014 in Pensacola, FL. (749 characters)

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.28/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle into a wine glass.

A: Pours a clearish straw color. There's a finger worth of white-colored head, with a fairly typical texture and okay retention. A soapy ring of lacing is left on the glass. There are no dregs in the bottom to obscure my bee

S: Very spicy...really spicy, actually. All four spices come through very well - in a way, I'm reminded of marinara sauce (sans tomato). My problem is that too much emphasis is placed on the spicing and too little is placed on the rusticness. Sure, I am getting touches of black pepper, but the yeast is really subdued. But considering my luck with 'Murican-brewed saisons, maybe that's a good thing?

T: Spicing hits the palate immediately. I really taste the sage most of all. The back end gradually trails into a gentle breadiness. If there's any problem here, it's not the lack of rustic qualities - it's the utter simplicity. There isn't much of anything beyond spices and breadiness.

M: This part was nailed well: it's soft and creamy, with a decently full body - and even better, a dry finish. Healthy carbonation probably plays a role in the latter, as the drinkable nature slows a bit after the fizz lets up. Still, it feels quite nice in the mouth.

O: This is a weird beer: it's no Dupont (that's for sure), but it still manages to carve out a niche for itself. Its intense, seemingly imbalanced spice quotient is what gives it its charm. Worth a try. (1,422 characters)

Photo of mthomp081
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A - hazy golden yellow, small white head, minimal lacing

S - spices, dominant are thyme, sage, and parsley, can't really smell the rosemary, very herbal

T - at first it starts as if its going to be sweet, then the herbs kick in and really turn it to a more herbal and spicy taste. the thyme, sage, and parsley are dominating the taste. there's definitely some pepper in here as well.

M - light to medium bodied, very crisp, some carbonation

O - very unique, the spices really offset the sweetness nicely. very interesting for a saison but certainly enjoyable (562 characters)

Saison Du BUFF from Dogfish Head Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 432 ratings.