Sneak Attack Saison - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Sneak Attack SaisonSneak Attack Saison

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BA SCORE
80
good

559 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 559
Reviews: 111
rAvg: 3.54
pDev: 12.43%
Wants: 22
Gots: 94 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 559 | Reviews: 111
Photo of vkv822
3.69/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz : tulip
canned: 11/14/13

Hazy, pale golden yellow with a fizzy, foamy white head with short retention.

Big spicy, Belgian yeast character, herbal, floral notes predominately.

Medium body, low foamy carbonation. Fine, but not quite as crisp as I usually expect in the style.

Surprisingly well done for a saison-in-a-can. As stated above, I would have liked a bit more crispness in the mouthfeel, but it was still pleasant.

Photo of KFBR392
3.77/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Straw yellow color with a hazy body. Average active carbonation for a saison. Half a finger of head on the pour which was present while drinking. Random sticky lacing left at each level.

Smell: Floral hops pop out right away. Grassy earthy herbal yeast tones back up the hops well. Some spices provide a solid base for this brew. Nothing overly complex but bright and refreshing.

Taste: Complex spices really dominate the taste. Coriander, cloves, kale, straw, pepper, and leafy greens carry the body. Distinct bright fruitiness with some bananas as well. Lingering vegetal and spices tones remain into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, it's there but not overpowering. Same deal with the dryness, lingers but not in an offensive way.

Overall: Solid saison here. Has a lot of traditional tones with some added touches as well. Really like the fruity hop tones this one brings. Feels like a great summer brew but went great on a very cold Illinois night.

Photo of anarchia
3.68/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Hazy yellow saison with a large head that dissipates a little too quickly. Aroma is heavy on peppercorns and lemon zest with noticeable alcohol. Sparkling carbonation, spicy on the tongue, bone dry. Very light flavors here. Some lemon, lots of peppercorn and spices, finishes with spicy hop bitterness.

Photo of smakawhat
3.98/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the can into a tulip glass.

A real nice deep brass gold, a good small column of middle carbonation in the middle, capped with a two finger fluffy and very white egg creamy head. Some good retention here as well, pretty solid.

Yup smells like cardamom, with a nice yeast sticky bread quality matching in the background. Controlled sensing sweetness as well. As advertised, quite nice, and more importantly not overpowering.

Palate is interesting, a little ferrous finish and metallic twinge, but a nice mid blast of cardamom and crisp carbonation. Slightly wet body but gives a real nice quinine and hinting tonic water crisp character. Quenching but also dry, with some good white bakery bread action, but also very tonned down brett heat.

An overall nice take on a saison, very easy drinking as well.

Photo of LambicPentameter
3.59/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed out of a 12 oz can that is stamped on the bottom with a canning date of December 2012. I wouldn't ordinarily review a year-old can, but this particular style can hold up over some time passage, and after drinking it, I thought it held up quite well. People might want to know that this beer can be enjoyed 12 months after packaging.

Appearance - Pretty standard saison appearance with a body that is a sunny golden yellow with noticeable haze and a steady drift of carbonation bubbles up from the bottom of the glass. Where the light refracts, the body is the color of a bright yellow lemon rind. Atop the body is a finger and a half head (can't help but wonder if a younger can would provide more) the color of bone white which is made up of tiny champagne-like microbubbles. Lacing is faint and barely present.

Smell - Surprisingly, I still get a nice amount of the cardamom that the can says is contained in this beer. I figured after a year, any of the adjuncts that were added would be barely detectable at best. Instead, the cardamom provides a nice floral sweetness, almost like nectar, to compliment the bready yeast characteristics of the saison. Some generic fruit phenols are present, but this aroma is mostly grain and cardamom.

Taste - The cardamom isn't nearly as present in the taste as it was in the aroma, but it still seems to impart a delicate softness to the taste that might not otherwise be there. Sourdough, toasted wheat and some spicy yeast-like phenols. Light lemon is present as well to provide some faint acidity. It could certainly use a bit more of said acidity--perhaps the age showing itself again.

Mouthfeel - Light bodied and moderate to light carbonation. Finish is semi-dry and there isn't really much of a lingering aftertaste. Pretty clean.

Overall, this is a nice saison, but I have to say it probably gets a little bit of extra credit because it is canned, and canned saisons seem so rare. It's a tasty brew, but I'm unlikely to go out of my way to get it again, especially since 21st Amendment doesn't distribute anywhere near my current location. I can think of dozens of saisons I'd choose first, and I can even think of two canned saisons that I'd likely pick ahead of this one.

Photo of corby112
3.4/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very cloudy, dark straw color with golden yellow edges and a 2.5 finger, pillowy white head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting cap/ring. Very good retention with sporadic spotty lacing coating the glass on the way down.

Earthy, musty aroma with peppery spice, bready yeast, ester-y light fruit and funky yeast. Hints of pepper, clove and cardamom along with some bread, banana and bubblegum. This is countered by funky farmhouse yeast along with a bit of cider and pear sweetness. I was expecting more cardamom, spice and farmhouse funk in the nose but the aroma is somewhat pedestrian.

Full bodied with a stronger spice presence than the aroma suggests. Some musty, peppery funk with bready yeast, slightly wild farmhouse yeast and bread along with sweeter light fruit flavor toward the finish. Spicy clove, white pepper, ginger, allspice and cardamom up front followed by hints of sourdough bread, banana, apple and pear. The saison/farmhouse character is still a little weaker than I prefer but the cardamom really stands out on the palate especially after it warms up a bit. An interesting take on the style with interesting Indian spices. Not the most complex beer but the spices are refreshing and the ABV in nicely masked making this beer pretty easy to drink.

Photo of BrewViking
3.95/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The head starts beautifully, but subsides quickly, and leaves little lacing, leaving the pale gold liquid. The taste is quite good, citrusy, highly-carbonated, moderately-hopped. The 6.2 ABV is masked fairly well.

And of course, great can art as usual from 21st amendment.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.4/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours two fingers of head on a cloudy light golden body.
The aroma is lemon, grain and cardamom.
The taste has a dry cardamom flavor with some mild lemon bitterness bring it to an end.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation.
It light and airy overall. Mild flavor. Drinkable and sort of interesting.

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.63/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from can into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a very hazy straw yellow-golden color with a one finger pure white head. The head fades relatively quickly leaving a persistent white foam on the top of the brew with almost no lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is of a wheat and lemon smell with a large amount of a funky yeast smell. With the funky yeast comes a grassy and herbal smell. Along with these smells is a good dose of spice being largely of cardamom and some clove.

Taste – The taste begins with a more smooth bready and cracker taste mixed with a lemongrass taste. The flavors have a bit of lemonade sweetness upfront, but these sweeter tastes are soon lost more toward the middle of the taste. The sweeter lemonade is lost largely due to spice flavors of coriander and clove as well as a more grainy wheat flavor coming to the tongue more toward the middle to the end of the taste profile. Along with these tastes, a yeasty flavor comes, bringing with it a grassy and hay like funky taste leaving a rather grainy, grassy and somewhat funky yeast s taste on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the medium side in its creaminess and thickness with a carbonation level that is slightly above average. Both are quite appropriate for the style, keeping a very drinkable brew while not accentuating the funk, yeast, and wheat too much so that it is overpowering, but yet allowing it to be appreciated by the tongue.

Overall – A rather tasty and enjoyable saison with a nice blend of lemon, wheat, yeast and funk.

Photo of alaimoa
3.3/5  rDev -6.8%
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

Photo of Bouleboubier
3.76/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

(on tap at the 2nd St brewpub, mid-Apr 2013)

A: pale amber, cloudy... lazy foam and lace

S: nice basic spicy-floral, biscuit aroma - smells like a Saison

T: same basic flavors as aromas... pretty spicy tart.... very nice hot cinnamon-like finish.... fruity/malty aftertaste

M: nicely dry but no burn or heat

O: not distinct or unique, but well-constructed - does its job

Photo of vfgccp
3.14/5  rDev -11.3%
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.

Photo of ckollias
3.49/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed this 12oz can out of a craft beer glass.

A: Pours a clear golden straw with a 2-finger white head that slowly dissipates leaving a nice trail and ending in a sold lace.

S: Belgian yeast and fruity aroma.

T: Sweet Belgian fruity malt with a tangy and yeast-like backbone.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Solid farmhouse ale – went down smooth and easy.

Photo of jlindros
3.8/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Yay craft beer in a can, cause everybody likes it in the can... although I have a feeling this will be a generic American saison, which is not my style of saison, but can't count the flavors before the can is cracked. Canned on 12/16/12, don't you love dating cans!

Big fluffy fizzy almost 2 finger head fades semi quickly with a bit of lacing, over semi clear but sediment laden watery looking pilsner color.

Nose brings some light watery saison aromas, a little grainy toasty malt, lemony, lemon grass, cracker, little bread dough, light saison spices, somewhat floral and effervescent.

Taste starts surprisingly with a little farmhouse funk, saison earthy Belgian yeast like funk but not a lot, then into the grainy malts with more cracker flavors, a little dough, some pilsner malts with a nice toasty wheat, and toasted hay, a light wheat flavor and complexion. Saison brings light spices as well, with a little lemony citrus fruit , coriander, clove, etc, and finally a cardamom bite which adds an interesing complexity. Then hops cut in, of course... it's 21st A, a lemony grassy and slightly spicy and chewy hop profile that gets fairly bitter. The hops, besides the lemony flavor, brings an interesting terroir earthy like flavor, perhaps some sorachi ace hops... Finish is dry, quite dry, decent bitterness with more lemony earthy spicy hops and a bit grassy, as well as saison grassy flavors, wheat, more spices with even more of the cardamom coming through, and a bit more farmhouse funk lingering.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb that gets fluffy and almost overcarbonated as it goes.

Overall not bad, a bit surprising as I expected an "American" boring saison with some light pilsner, watery lemon, and hint of spices. This had some of that, but even some nice farmhouse funk, a decent malt profile with toasty pilsner and wheat, the lemony flavors get a little overbearing, and the hops get a little too bitter for a saison, but that's typical for 21st A. Cardamom comes through lightly but nice in conjunction with the saison spices. So a decent saison that comes in a can so i can take it on trips easily. I wonder if the few months in the can helped the funk develop.

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.7/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours a light golden amber with a half finger white head that dissipates to a thick film and ring around the glass, leaving lacing. Aroma dominated by cadamom and cloves with light bready yeast and wheat, hint of wild yeast. Flavor is subdued and dry; light lemon, biscuit malt, cardamom, developing a slight sweet flavor then finishing dry with mild wild yeast and bittering hops. Light bodied as to style. A non-assertive saison style ale that is refreshing, but not memorable.

Photo of Reidrover
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz tin into a pilsner glass, bought from Fred Meyer in S.Salem. $8.99 a sixer. Clear corn oil yellow colour, nice thick creamy white head. Attractive lively carbonation. peppery,yeasty aromas slight dough. nice Taste is moderately spicy wit a touch of bubblegum,some German white wine tones coming through. I likey. Mouthfeel is OK maybe a little too thick and under carbonated for style but still OK. Overall i enjoyed this one nice drink.

Photo of CHickman
3.28/5  rDev -7.3%
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.

Photo of dpodratsky3
3.6/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz can poured into pint glass:

A: Ok head settles to barely a covering, opaque but not cloudy, very very pale gold

S: Smells like a typical wheat beer, wheaty malt, defintely some lemon too, not sure what cardamom smells like but it is definitely present and unique

T: Cardomom flavor comes through very strongly, tastes like a beer mixed drink, too strong for me, but interesting

M: Medium light body, lower carbonation than I expected, feels smooth

O: Good, just not my thing

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.52/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a hazy pale yellow with a white, 2 finger head. Fair retention. Nice top layer of microbubbles, most gravitating to the edge.

Smell - Aroma is strongly herbal; mint mostly, with a healthy pepper kick. Soft banana. Peppermint gum.

Taste - Light, with notes of mint and faint banana character upfront. More herbal qualities come through mid-taste, bringing with it a touch of peppery spice. Finishes with a mild, drying grassy bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body, with a dry, crisp bite. Bone dry finish.

Overall - Well, it's unique. I'll give it that much. The cardamom is just too dominant, not allowing any other aspects of the beer to truly shine through. The brewery refers to it as a nice palate cleanser; I'd say that about sums it up.

Photo of BeerDawgs
4.06/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Straw yellow with a foamy head and a touch of lace on the glass, not much

S - Pepper and spices. Smells tasty

T - Funky farmhouse yeast is prevalent. Lots of pepper and spices. Citrus and fruit. I dig it.

M - Lots of carbonation leaves a sizzling feeling on the tongue as it goes down.

O - Not the best Saison I have ever had, but in a can? Gotta love that! Definitely will hit this one up again..

Photo of Swift989
3.2/5  rDev -9.6%
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.

Photo of RblWthACoz
2.77/5  rDev -21.8%
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.

Photo of MattyG85
4.16/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. can into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass. Canned on 12-17-12.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy yellowish golden orange with a lot of bubbles. Big four finger white head with decent retention. Leaves a lot of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A very spicy and yeasty aroma with good hints of citrus. Belgian yeast with some hints of barnyard funk, pepper, and clove. Big scent of cardamom spicing that really sticks out. Herbal, earthy hops with a hint of grass. Hints of citrus orange and lemon zest along with some banana. Soft malts with hints of wheat grains, hay, and biscuit. A nice spice driven Saison smell.

Taste: Like the smell hints, a very spice driven Belgian farmhouse taste with esters of citrus. Belgian yeast with pepper and clove spicing along with a little ginger. Big taste of the cardamon spice. Fairly herbal with some earthy hops and grass. Taste of banana and citrus fruit including orange and lemon zest. Soft bready malts with notes of wheat grains, hay, and biscuit. A pretty nice twist on the style.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Crisp, spicy, and very smooth. Fairly drying.

Overall: A pretty good tasting take on the style. A pretty untraditional take on it with the heavy cardamon, but it works well.

Photo of ccrida
3.15/5  rDev -11%
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.

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

Tasty enough beer, just not a great Saison. Pours a hazy pale gold color from a can into my pint glass. A hard pour gives you a decent size delicately bubbly white head. Average retention and a little lacing.

Smell is primarily lemon zest and some cardamom. Pleasant.

Taste is more of the same. Lemon zest is most prominent. Spices are cardamom and black pepper. What is missing is the musty, yeasty funk that has been described as "horse blanket" or "barnyard". To me that funk is an essential part of a great Saison.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing.

Overall, a good summer beer, but if you are looking for a top shelf Saison...this one isn't it.

Sneak Attack Saison from 21st Amendment Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 559 ratings.