Sneak Attack Saison - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Sneak Attack SaisonSneak Attack Saison

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BA SCORE
82
good

103 Reviews
THE BROS
83
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 103
Hads: 561
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 12.26%
Wants: 21
Gots: 95 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Hoptometrist on 01-04-2013

You might not expect a Saison in winter. But the enemy didn’t expect Washington to cross the icy Delaware, either. Expectations be damned, we say. We’re sneaking up on winter with a boatload of bravado and this Belgian-style farmhouse ale. Dry hopped with whole organic cardamom pods, our Saison has an assertive spiciness. In your face, winter.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 103 | Hads: 561
Photo of Jeff_Winger
1.43/5  rDev -60.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.25

Either I got a bad six pack, or this beer is terrible. It didn't smell or taste good, and had just a horrible aftertaste. I tried 3 different cans, all bad. (158 characters)

Photo of brentk56
2.58/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy goldenstraw; for a Belgian style, the head is underwhelming, as is the lacing

Smell: Bread and cardamom; possibly a hint of acetone

Taste: Bready, up front, and then the candi sugar, Belgian yeast and cardamom take over; there is quite a medicinal character going on, verging on acetone, though also infused with lemon; the hops linger into the finish, bringing a surprising amount of grassy bitterness

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Way too much cardamom and the beer just has too many other negative attributes for me to want to spend any more time with it; drain pour (635 characters)

Photo of Redneckwine
2.66/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Frosty 12 oz can into pint glass

Appearance - Hazy golden, fizzy 1 finger head dissipates to almost nothing, not much lacing.

Smell - Fruity yeast, quite spicy with the advertised cardamom being apparent, slight funk, fairly interesting and unique.

Feel/Taste - Prickly carbonation, medium/heavy body. Flavor starts out very, very medicinal - an herbal minty note, yeasty clove phenols, cardamom spice is fairly strong and cloying, then moves into straight up bandaid/tire rubber funk flavor and slight graininess. Finishes dry and a bit astringent. What seemed kind of intriguing in the smell just doesn't work in the flavor.

Overall - Admittedly, I haven't tried a great deal of saisons, but this one has been the most unappealing thus far. Mouthfeel isn't very crisp and seems disjointed with the weird bandaid/rubber funk and spice flavors. Not a big fan of the astringent finish. It's difficult taking down this sixer. (928 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
2.77/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.25

I feel like I got a mouthful of junk with this one. It's a big soapy, spiced mess. I literally feel like I am chewing on something, which in this case is not good. Feel is weird. Overall, this is a prime example of an American brewery failing at making a saison; this is nowhere near what a saison can and should be. Stick to what you can do well and leave the other stuff alone. (379 characters)

Photo of Uniobrew31
2.79/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

For Saison this was pretty tame, It looks, tastes and feels more like a Pils than a Saison to me. Very minimal sourness and mild bread slightly sweet flavor. The head retention was way less than what I expect from the style. Not a bad beer but If I am in the mood for a Saison I will look elsewhere. (303 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
2.93/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Clouded golden body with a bright white head, speckled lacing left behind. Aroma has spice mild citrus notes, brewed with cardamom well I couldn't have pulled that one out by itself. Slightly metallic note in the nose and definitely in the flavor, bitterness from the spice additions, lemon lime quality just plain unbalanced and not a good representative of the style. Mouthfeel is dry bitter, tingling with acidity, and spices hard to get down each sip lasts around longer carbonation is forced a bit much in all regards. Overall, I tend to like 21st Amendment releases this one has to be off, or it was just a straight miss. (627 characters)

Photo of Stinkypuss
2.99/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

LOOK: Pours a cloudy pale golden color. White head forms and leaves a bit of lace on the snifter.

SMELL: Wheat, hay and a light Belgian funk with some bubblegum/banana like esters. Grassy.

TASTE: Light tartness supported by a wheat malt base. The can says its brewed with cardamom, and it is very strong in the taste with a seedy, peppery, poppy like dryness. Very mild bitterness and a spice bite. There is a small citrusy acidity that is the saving grace for the flavor. Yeast phenols are muted for the most part.

FEEL: Light bodied, fairly drinkable since its so light and packs in the flavor. The cardamom in the end just becomes overbearing in the finish and leaves a seedy oil coating on the palate. Some tasters have detected a numbing sensation, I concur.

OVERALL: Very average and over spiced. I'd probably quite enjoy it if they left the cardamom out of the recipe entirely. Cardamom. That's the sneak attack here. Mediocre but beats a trip to the dentist. (970 characters)

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.01/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

12 oz can into a Samuel Smith pint glass.

A: Pours a golden yellow color that's seemingly clear at first. Some exposure to light will reveal a hazier body. The head is a one finger white color. It's kind of disappointing by style standards, as it doesn't have the supreme retention or lacing qualities I expect.

S: Well spiced. And I really mean well spiced. Aside from the strong lemongrass quality the aroma provides, many spices - such as ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, and the advertised cardamom - come through in an almost explosive manner. If there any such thing as a winter saison, this would be it.

T: There is a lot of lemon flavor in general, with a finish that evokes not only cardamom, but both gingerbread cookies and fresh cut grass as well. Complexity is muted at best. Works as simple refreshment quite well. Let's be honest, though, it's not a great saison.

M: A bit on the syrupy side - which is usually a deal breaker in a saison. I'm almost content to blame the slight undercarbonation (though it seems to perk up as the wet finish builds up), but I'm thinking its caused by the general sweetness. The texture features excellent initial crispness, but that syrupy, vaguely sweet linger comes close to ruining things completely. Dryness tries to accumulate past the aftertaste to no avail.

O: Those looking for a complex, thought evoking saison, look elsewhere. Those looking for a simple thirst quenching beer in a can, give it a try. I have to dock points for not being a good representation of the style, but as a regular 'spiced beer', it's solid. (1,572 characters)

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.07/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up the can tonight at the COOP.... Poured into my HotD goblet while boxing up some beer... Short lasting white head leaves little in the way of lacing... the brew is a slightly hazed very pale straw yellow.

Nose is a cardamom bomb.... The spice just overpowers everything else. Light phenols show with warmth.

Slight "beery" pale malt flavor on the palate... but the spice takes over quickly and never allows for anything else... Cardamom lingers forever on the palate. As things come up in temperature, I get more pale malt and some yeasty phenols.. perhaps some pear esters.

Body and carbonation are right for a saison, but never would I have pegged this as a saison based on any other sensory element.

Just not for me. 3.25/3/3/3.5/3 (747 characters)

Photo of Huffs
3.08/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured into a Sam Adams glass, developed a light head which dissipated fairly quickly. Appearance was a cloudy straw. Aroma was very unusual, though I'm not to familiar with saisan style, was strong of spice and citrus, spice was like cardamom. Taste was light, almost woody with citrus and cardamom hints. Mouthfeel was light and carbonated with the aftertaste being spicy and lasting. (386 characters)

Photo of VelvetExtract
3.11/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Funny can art. Pours a lightly hazy yellow with a thinner, white head. Soft on the lace.

S-Aroma is heavy with the pungent cardamom. That combined it's the Belgian yeast makes for one spicy, clovey aroma. Some peppery aromas, too. Somewhat fruity.

T-Cardamom, clove, pepper. Light fruity notes with some grassy hops as well. The spices are too bold.

M-Medium bodied, well carbonated. A bit of a lingering feel to it.

O-Was not a big fan of this. Not into all the spice flavor. It takes away from the other elements of the beer. (533 characters)

Photo of jellikit
3.14/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: yellow. Hazy. Small head. No lacing. Small grain particles sunk to bottom of glass upon pouring.
S: essence of banana. Small spice notes.
T: medium maltiness. Belgian like flavors. Definite cardamom. Strange bitterness at the end/aftertaste.
M: medium to high carbonation. Medium body. Dry.
O: meh. Has a funky aftertaste. Kinda metallic or weird bitterness that is not a yeast profile. Had grain fragments in can. (418 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
3.14/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A - Mostly opaque pale yellow gold. Nice white head on the pour, but poor retention and lace.

S - Mango, honeydew, bready wheat, lemon. Strangely hefeweisen-like.

T - Green plantains, black peppercorns, honey, cardamon, cilantro bitters.

M - Medium-light body, par carbonation.

O - Not a great saison, but not bad for a saison in a can and overall it's a nice summer ale. (375 characters)

Photo of BB1313
3.15/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Canned on 12/16/12. 12oz can poured into a tulip. Pours a light hazy staw color. There's a pretty small white head which fades pretty quickly and doesn't leave much lacing. The aromas are fragrant and full of spices. Cardamom and lavender seem to dominate the nose. There's also some bubblegum yeasty notes in the mix as well. There are also hints of lemon zest and orange peel in the nose. The flavors are somewhat grainy, but clean. This does seem to lack true depth. There's subtle hints of black pepper, giving it a light spiciness. These flavors are pretty floral and herbal. There is also some cinnamon in the mix, which is slightly noticeable in the flavors and aromas. There's a decent bitterness going on. Earthy flavors. It's slightly syrupy sweet, but barely. The mouthfeel is pretty crisp, making it a refreshing brew. It's light with pretty active carbonation. It's on the fuller side of light-bodied. Alcohol goes unnoticed. Would be great with warm weather.

This is an interesting beer. Maybe it's not exactly what I come to expect from a saison, but it's still a decent beer. I really like the herbs and spices used. Nothing special, but not bad. I think this would make a good summer seasonal. (1,211 characters)

Photo of Hoptometrist
3.15/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served from the can into an oversized wine glass

A- Poured a very clear light golden yellow with a frothy head that dissipated instantly into a little ring that stuck around for a while. No visible carbonation and some minimal lacing.

S- Huge cardamom and cinnamon notes, some light hay aroma, cracker and pilsner malt aromas

T- Huge cardamom and cinnamon notes up front with some lemon and pilsner malt from the middle to the finish. Some saltiness on the finish that really lingers

M- Some prickly carbonation but not as effervescent as many other saisons, semi-dry, finishes slightly watery, lighter bodied

O- Cardamom in a saison is a unique addition. Unfortunately the caradmom overwhelms the beginning of the sip and is completely absent in the finish. Each sip tastes different, but not in a complex way, just more disjointed. (848 characters)

Photo of ccrida
3.15/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, Sneak Attack is hazy pale yellow with crackling, frothy white head that leaves light, but foamy lace.

Smell is bit on the robust side with the cardamon spice and herbal hops, but not too pungent. Nice sweetness to the cereals. A little pithy minerality that is spot on for what I look for, and love about the style.

Taste is pretty acrid from the spice, on the start and particularly on the finish. A flash of sweet malt mid-palate. A bit medicinal.

Mouthfeel is dry, a little slippery. Seems a touch thin, perhaps it's just the forced CO2.

Drinkability is OK in that it's light and crisp, but the spice is too much for me to really session. I wish I'd noticed that on the box before I grabbed the six-pack. (756 characters)

Photo of joefuzz
3.16/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Canned on 1/14/13

Pours cloudy straw yellow with a small head smells of lemon and grapefruit taste follows the nose with a hint of grass and black pepper. Mouthfeel and carbonation are both on the soft side. Good seasonal but here in ny I think its the wrong season for it. (274 characters)

Photo of Swift989
3.2/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Can poured into pint glass.

half inch head that dissipates quickly. beautiful golden yellow color with lots of carbonation at first that continues to bubble throughout the drinking experience.

Smell is ok, defintely strong/dominated by the cardamom. slightly sour.

Taste: 38 IBUs, but sour hint is definitely evident. Cardamom is pretty overwhelming and meets the box discription of "in your face." enjoyable at first but wanes as you drink. This is a winter take on a typically summer beer. I am not really familiar with Saisons, but the taste does have a "Farmhouse" quality to it.

Mouthfeel: slightly thin, but summery. little tangy in back of mouth.

Overall: I would definitely try another more traditional Saison before drinking this again. The brewery does got props for marketing and naming, as Sneak Attack is fitting for something brewed out of season. Art work on can is fun. Would try other ones of their beers. (927 characters)

Photo of stevoj
3.23/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

At first taste, this seems closer to witbier/Berliner weisse, light and bubbly. some spice and floral notes. Lots of yeast, sourdough aspects to this. some light citrus on the palate, short finish. Doesn't have the full body of the French/Belgian varieties, aroma not as full either. (283 characters)

Photo of Braz
3.26/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bought a six pack at Safeway. Poured from can into glass. Hazy gold color, frothy white head that leaves a thin cap on top. Smells of coriander and other spices. Getting a bit of ginger or something too. Tastes are very spiced. Too much for me. Faint citrus touches with a lot of spice. Not sure what this would taste like out of a bottle but I never feel a can enhances anything. This is ok but just doesn't floor me. Too bad because I love this style. (453 characters)

Photo of CHickman
3.28/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Pours a slightly hazy bright yellow color with a snow white foamy 1-2 finger head that faded at a moderate pace and left decent spotty lacing.

Smells of clove, ginger (apparently that’s the cardamom listed on the can), grass, cinnamon, herbs, spices like potpourri, wheat, lemon and dried flowers; this is all spices and zero malt or hops in the nose. Fans of potpourri will really dig this nose; fans of basic beer smell will not.

Tastes of strong ginger up front, followed by clove, wheat, dry yeast, herbs, grass, cinnamon and spices like coriander, pepper and potpourri, lemon, hay and dried flowers; a hint of toasted grains and floral hop peek through, but just like the nose the flavor is all spices with the ginger/cardamom being the dominant aspect. Not my cup of tea, but some people may like this.

Mouthfeel is light and zesty, with high fizzy carbonation, a medium body, and a grainy semi-dry finish that leave nothing but the ginger taste in your mouth; feels like having a piece of fresh ginger that comes with sushi.

Overall this was interesting, but this is a one-time beer for me. Not my flavor profile of choice and not all that enjoyable to me. (1,173 characters)

Photo of artoolemomo
3.29/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Appearance- Pours up an okay amount of head which has decent retention. The head is a pure cotton white while the body is a dull and pale straw that appears as a bright, lemon yellow in the light. No real lacing is left behind. Maybe a spot or two.

Nose- The cardamom is pretty dominant on the nose but it is quickly followed by other spices and herbs. Coriander, lots of botanicals, and juniper (very reminiscent of gin) with light notes of apple and lemon in the background. Some white pepper. Swirling shows a brighter note of apple. Some banana. Some grassiness, some earth.

Taste- Starts off with a front of lemon with notes of apple in the background. Moves into aforementioned botanicals and juniper. Notes of clove, wood, earth, and grass on the finish. A pretty big linger of chalk and ash. Seems a little thin in comparison to the aroma. Not as much cardamom as on the nose either. After a while, most notes fade away and there is lemon, coriander, slight juniper, and chalk left. Some ashiness. Not intolerable but rather boring. I think that the best that I could rate this would be average. Okay for a saison in a can but I've had better from a can. This lacks too much presence and complexity to be more than average. It's similar to Stone Saison but without the in your face presence. A little more hopped than I would like a saison to be, especially considering there isn't much else to push back against the hops. This is, without a doubt, an extremely mediocre beer.

Mouthfeel- Light bodied with maybe a little bit too much carbonation and a faint carbonic sting. Somewhat dry finish. Maybe a little watery.

Drinkability- Pretty easygoing but also fairly boring. It was only 7 bucks for a 6 pack and now I know the reason.

Overall- There are worse beers out there. Pretty much just average. I wouldn't worry about passing this up. This will not be a repurchase. (1,889 characters)

Photo of fscottkey
3.3/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

A: [4.50] The beer is a transparent straw color. It is pale compared to most beers. There is very little head - just a white covering on the beer. Lots of nucleation bubbles from the bottom. The can lists the best by date 4/30/15, the ABV 6.2% and the IBUs at 38. As an aside I also like the art on the can. Kind of a spin off of Washington crossing the Delaware - but in all beach otfits.

S: [2.50] Funky yeast. Heavy wet wheat. Earth tones.

T: [3.50] The front of the palate is Belgian yeast/wheat. But the mid palate transforms to something different (better). It has a nice citrus flavor. The finish is a combination of both flavors.

M: [3.75] It is on the carbonated side of things. The overall feel is decent - not too watery.

O: [3.25] I think this would be a decent beer on a dock or a beach. It seems a little out of place on a 7 degree day in Buffalo. The citrus flavor really livens up what I thought would be a big mouthful of Belgian wheat and yeast. I would drink this again just to say I have a "go to" Saison. (1,044 characters)

Photo of alaimoa
3.3/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Picked these cans up a few months ago just wanting to try. Pours a hazy gold and instantly smell spice, citrus and biscuits. Taste instantly citrusy and bready with a hit of fall spices. Not initially bitter but there is a late bitterness that lingers in somewhat of an unpleasant way.
Overall this beer is okay, I would possibly buy it again but not seek it out (363 characters)

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.31/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a lightly hazy yellow with a white head. In the aroma, cardamom, lemon citrus, and small tart earthiness.. In the taste, lemon citrus and cardamom, with a small tart and dryer end. A small spice bite and a lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a dry cardamom and lemon citrus in the aftertaste. Dry and small earthy tartness, big lemon citrus, just above average. (362 characters)

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Sneak Attack Saison from 21st Amendment Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 103 ratings.