Black Oak Summer Saison - Black Oak Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Black Oak Summer SaisonBlack Oak Summer Saison

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

71 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 71
Reviews: 50
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 9.25%
Wants: 6
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Black Oak Brewing Co. visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DrJay on 07-11-2004

Brewed with wheat, orange zest, coriander and special yeast, this seasonal ale delivers continental character and flavour. Unfiltered with an orange hue, pleasant citrus aroma, slightly higher carbonation all combine for a thirst-quenching beer. Perfectly proportioned wheat and spice provides a smooth refreshing ale, just right for hot summer days.
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Ratings: 71 | Reviews: 50
Reviews by trevorwideman:
Photo of trevorwideman
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

341ml bottle poured into a tulip. Sent to me by pootz, thanks man! My 300th review!!!

Pours a lovely hazey and unfiltered light orange colour with a minimal head and low carbonation, a little bit of wet lace. Aroma is very yeasty with some bready tones, some spicy hops, wheaty. There's a bit of refresing citrus-zest bitterness as well.

Taste is refreshing and surpirisngly hoppy. There's a citrus bitterness and some funk. Pepperiness too, some lactic sourness, a little cheese. Yeasty and bready. Very, very enjoyable. SImple but not one dimensional, and very refreshing. Mouthfeel is pretty dry with a bit more body than I was expecting, and a zippy carbonation. The abv is super low on this one, and it makes this a perfect summer thirst quencher, too bad it's November! This would be one hell of a lawnmower beer.

More User Reviews:
Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.01/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Kickoff in Waterloo. A fitting brew for the last day of summer.

Poured into a nonic glass. A lovely bright orange-golden brew, with loads of creamy lacing, which left solid sheets of lacing. Visible carbonation right up to the end. Looks terrific.

Nose is light citrus, peach, grain husks, musk, pepper, and that right amount of yeast that reminds me of Belgian blonde ales.

Smooth, crisp, refreshing - a terrific summer brew. Tons of flavor here - chewy grains, peach, orange peel, lemon, spices. Would that I could have had this all summer long.

Creamy, with adequate carbonation. About the right body for a brew such as this - on the thin side for big quaffing.

Great stuff again from Black Oak. A fresh, flavorful brew, perfect for a hot day. Would love to see this in bottles out in KW. I will be back for more until the summer warmth dies off...

Photo of Sammy
3.57/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

cloudy orange. Yeasty aroma. But then bitter and lacking carbonation, even watery. Spicy yeast, corriander pepper, Orange peel gives it an acidic bitterness begging food.
Had the 2007 on tap three years later. Hopped up with a good head. This version was like a spicy IPA,light mouthfeel. I am rating that version.

Photo of stagger
4.45/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

An astonishingly good session saison, not as complex or hoppy as many in the style, but somehow the more perfect for all that - I'd drink this every day if it were available.

Taste is extremely reminiscent of Driftwood's excellent Farmhand Ale, but without the Farmhand's sometimes overweening black pepper finish.

Hoping I can get my hands on more down the road.

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Hogtownharry: Poured a deep golden orange color ale with a big foamy head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of funky east with some orange and other spices. Taste is dry with some floral malt and a long yeasty finish with layer of complexity. Body is a bit light but it doesn’t hurt the beer too much overall. I got too admit that I wasn’t expecting so much from this one and was pleasantly surprised.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ WVRST. Served in pint glass.

A - Straw yellow, slightly hazy with a small layer of white head.

S - A crisp floral hop presence compliments Belgian yeast, clove, spice and some citrus.

T - Crisp floral hop aroma, Belgian yeast, clove,
light citrus, spice. Clean and refreshing.

M - Light to medium body with moderate carbonation.

O - This is an extremely refreshing and sessionable saison. I find many saisons to be overly spiced to the point that the drinkability as a summer session beer suffers, but this one hits the mark. A great combination of depth of flavour and sessionability.

Photo of ZorPrime
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Bobsy for this beer. Tasted on September 20, 2009.

A: Golden yellow, hazy with a nice little head that sticks well to the glass.

S: Fruity, some coriander. Typical Belgium smell... spicy but not too much.

T: Wow, bitter... I get some woody flavor here. Not my type of taste unfortunately. I think the woody stuff is too harsh however, this beer it is tone down a little bit.

M: I feel the carbonation.

D: One per session is enough for me.

That woody taste I have to get through... I guess my palates are not accustomed to this. Maybe with more experience I would like it more. If you like the wood taste, this is one beer for you, however it is not strong. Maybe a good introductory to this taste...

Photo of IronDjinn
3.43/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to northyorksammy for the sample. Pours out a cloudy opaque marmalade hue, smallish head that recedes to a ring. The nose is very yeasty at first, but as it warms all those nice spices start becoming more apparent: banana, coriander, orange peel, some nutmeg. The flavour possesses a sort of citris rind bitterness to it, with some coriander and pepper lurking in the background, a sharp lemon note appears in the middle after a while, and the citris rind bitterness comes to a crescendo on the finish. Mouthfeel is somewhat watery at first, but builds some fullness as it passes over the palate. A bit one-dimensional over-all, but still a drinkable interpretation of the style.

Photo of ritzkiss
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle for the second time, both courtesy of Bobsy and his generous spirit. Pours a lovely golden with fingers of stiff head that is fed by bubble streams from the bottom of the glass. Lacing all the way down. Nice.

Nose is apples, grassiness, a little funk, coriander, and a generic wheatiness. Fruity and clean.

Clean entry followed by a burst of fruits: lemons, orange, a hint of banana, green apples. A clean wheat, the faintest touch of funk, a kick of spice/pepper in the finish. Dry, crisp carbonation, smooth body, extremely drinkable. Nothing outstanding about the flavors but simple and well done.

This is a really nice saison, perhaps one of the best in Canada and one of Ontario's finer offerings. Slight detraction is a faint off bitterness in the finish, other than that a great summer drinker, especially with the low ABV. This one is a winner. Thanks again Rob!

Photo of Rastacouere
3.15/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz: Thanks radiomgb for a new collectible saison. Nice cloudy amber body, thin off-white cover. Good herbal nose, slightly floral, minty, fruity (pears) with notes of coriander. Herbal palate provides a very approachable balancing bitterness through mild hops reminiscent of goldings. Decent biscuity maltiness, soft body, quite low carbonation. It is quite yeasty actually, but this yeast strain just doesn’t boast the same maturity than a Dupont’s or blaugies. Finally, this didn’t feel like a saison all that much although I’m glad to see a Canadian brewery give the style a try. It definitely lacked some carbonation and needs more original summery hay, funk or whatever flavour, more head would be fun too, maybe next year? By the way, this is said to be far superior on tap.

Photo of papat444
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Masterski for this.

Poured from a 341ml. bottle.

Appearance: A hazy peach colored body with thick foam and a nice ring of lacing all around.

Smell: Pears, citrus, banana and a good wheat profile.

Taste: Pears, mild hops, banana, very mild spicing and ends with a twinge of sweet fruit, like tropical fruit. Very vague tartness.

Mouthfeel: Airy, ever so light bitterness and a nice lingering after taste.

Overall: Refreshing, tasty and could easily convert a light beer drinker.

Photo of liamt07
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from the Black Oak Brewery, purchased as part of a 6-pack and one bottle was mysteriously left unconsumed in my fridge. Been sitting there since last May or so, so it seems I've 'aged' this to a degree? Regardless, a 341ml bottle into a tulip.

Poured a filtered, orange yellow with some floaties hanging around in suspension (that I don't recall seeing when I consumed these last summer, Black Oak filters all their stuff). A finger of medium density head appears, with some mild retention. Nose holds some bright citrus, and orange, some light "zestiness," toasted wheat notes and a somewhat dry feel to it. Taste has a lot of dry fruits, more indiscriminate citrus and a whole lot of the toasted wheat. More zest is evident in a relatively dry finish, which lasts quite long. Dryness leaves one wanting more. 'twas a good drink, albeit more suited to a summer evening than a cold winter afternoon. Enjoyable, as it seems to have held up to its original flavour quite well.

Photo of SebD
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice hazy deep golden/orange color to it. It has a nice thick off-white head that dies down moderately and leaves some nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of citrus, coriander, Saison yeast, light peppery spices and some cloves.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has citrus, coriander, wheat malts, yeast, some peppery spices and light cloves.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by good flavors and aromas. Overall very well executed and very refreshing.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of mrmanning
3.82/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for the bottle Doug! Much appreciated. Thick bubbly of white head sits on top of a heavily carbonated orange coloured body. Lots of sediment here too! Nice! Aroma is of orange peel, spices, sour notes, and sweet malt. Complex! Taste is orange peels, spices, sweet and sour bitterness, and some grassy notes. Long lasting aftertaste that is bitter and sour. Well balanced!

Photo of thehyperduck
4.06/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

650 mL bottle from the LCBO; served slightly chilled.

Pours a cloudy golden-amber colour, topped with one finger of frothy white head that gradually dissipates over a period of minutes. The aroma is fruity and enticing, with the orange zest and coriander spice figuring in strongly. Sweet and yeasty, with some grassy hay notes, wheat malt and banana - I'm digging this one already.

Orange and lemon citrus rind come through strongly, with a sweet wheat malt backbone accented by some apricot and banana notes. There's a firm, peppery coriander spice at the finish, which is yeasty and only mildly bitter. This is a light-bodied, extremely refreshing farmhouse ale with aggressive, biting carbonation. Extremely refreshing; I can think of few other things I would rather drink after a summer bike ride (or mowing the lawn, or etc.).

Final Grade: 4.06, an A-. This is the second bottle of Black Oak's Saison I've had in as many days, and it probably won't be my last. It achieves an excellent balance between complexity and sessionability, with a light, thirst-quenching nature that makes it an ideal summer treat. Highly recommended - like all of Black Oak's offerings, this is well worth a try.

Photo of funkengruven
4.45/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this one on-tap at the Pepperwood Bistro, Being a locally produced attempt at this style of brew I had no idea what to expect. But I was quite happy with what I got.

This came to me a very bright hazy yellow-orange with a slightly yellow head on the top. Smell is yeasty, with some nice spices in there. Now when I sipped this I honestly thought I was drinking a genuine Belgian Saison. The flavors were balanced just right and the aroma was perfect, Not to mention this went down just nicely.

I sincerely hope they keep more of this around as it just a great beer all round.

Photo of Derek
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy bronze, white head, good retention, initially a great lace.

S: Spicy hay with hints of barnyard (leather/horse), wheat, citrus zest/rind and hints of earthyness.

T: Spicy (corriander & a grains-of-paradise/white-pepper), grassy straw, slight funk with a hint of tartness, wheat, light biscuit, citrus zest/rind and a hint of earthy yeast character.

M: Light to moderate body, well-attenuated, dry, slight acidity.

D: Very drinkable.

Photo of DenisKolkin
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

650 ml bottle served cold into a Sam smiths pint glass. Purchased for $6 CDN from LCBO.

Appearance - mildly cloudy orange beer with two fingers of white head. Plenty of lively bubble so throughout. Great retention and plenty of sticky lacing.

Smell - powdery yeast aroma with plenty of fruit namely nectarine. A touch of peppery goodness too. Some mineral aroma too.

Taste - light flowery aspect, with some nectarine taste fitting with the aroma. Also some wildness from the yeast. Very light and refreshing.

Mouthfeel - smooth, light body and light carbonation. Some juiciness transitioning to a drier finish.

Overall - a nice saison that's on the lighter side of things. Very refreshing with a nice light fruit flavor.

Photo of jrenihan
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer is a fairly clear golden. Small white head. Good lacing.

Smell contains yeast, dry cereal, lemon. A bit tart. Some light fruit. Smells like a berliner weisse to me.

Taste contains yeast, dry cereal. and an odd flavour that reminds me of Asian rice crackers- bizarre but I can't be more precise and the resemblance was startling. Lemon and other light fruit are present as well- perhaps papaya?

Light bodied, strongly carbonated. Too fizzy.

Overall. pretty good, but not exciting. Not what I hoped for.

Photo of crwills
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Victory Cafe in Toronto.

Poured a cloudy orange into a pint glass; unique and different, with a small, quickly-fading white head. Aroma is quite citrusy, with orange juice notes, plus some other sweeter fruits and floral yeast. Reminds me of dessert, for some reason; maybe it's the colour. First thing noted when taking a sip is the fantastic, smooth mouthfeel; slightly oily, but great body and pleasant citrus candy aftertaste. Flavour is yeasty and very Belgian, with well-balanced citrus and sugary malt notes and a decent dose of bitter but mild hops. Complex, and I wish I'd had the time or capacity for more than one so I could get a better impression.

I thought this was just fantastic, and the number of people ordering it seemed to indicate that others did as well.

Photo of Viggo
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy amber/gold, big thick white head, lots of nice lace and great retention. Smell is sweet, yeasty, wheat, orange, spices and a little vanilla. Taste is sweet up front, some toffee, orange, wheat, yeasty tang bite, vanilla, and a spicy bitter finish. Mouthfeel is light bodied with medium carbonation. Great shot at a saison, does what a saison should and refreshes in the heat, very smooth and very enjoyable, good work.

I see I'm the first one to review this years edition. From what I've seen/heard its much better than the other years, the whole recipe has been reworked, including a proper yeast.

Photo of WeedKing4
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Gigs in London. Pours a golden orange. Tastes slightly spicey with some hops and a bready like finish. A very nice treat overall and drinks down very smooth. I'm getting impressed with the improvement in this Province for craft beer. Good stuff.

Photo of wordemupg
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

341ml bottle poured into pint glass nov1 2010

A hazy pale orange with lots tiny particles and plenty of carbonation that keeps a off white head there for a few minuets before it falls to a thin film leaving a few patches of lace

S yeasty orange peel with plenty of spice and even some faint bubble gum

T peppery flavors come through quite well on top of the yeast and citrus

M light and refreshing with lots of bubbles and a zesty aftertaste that slowly fades

D lots of flavor for a light beer, I could slam back a case of this if I had some summer heat to go with it

pretty happy with this one it would have been in my summer rotation for sure if I had this in my beer store. something you could drink a number of on a patio and still walk straight after, thanks liamt07 for sending this one my way

Photo of pootz
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 edition of this saison has undergone some recipe retooling.

Still has the same hazed light gold shimmer....good tight-pored cap with great retention and lacing and the same spicy, spritzy dry character.

The difference this year is that the corriander was imported and the seed gristed at the brewey...the heightened corriander tastes really spice up the sharp dry, peppery, character of this dry saison...possibly to a saturation point....the final fermentation natural carbonation was done early to create big-bubbled effervescence which gives the bottled version a decent spritzy character that is usually achieved by bottle conditioning.

All in all one of the better releases of this locally made Wallonian farmhouse ale

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wowzers, this was a pleasant surprise. This was one of my two favorite beers at the Toronto Beer Festival.

Pours a hazy glowing peach color with a creamy ivory head. The head stays big for the whole glass and leaves ridges and plateaus of lace behind. The aroma is packed with fruit, spices and plenty of Belgian esters. Pepper and hop bitterness also figure in the nose. The taste is infinitely fruity and complex. I notice melon, mango, apple, banana, mint, pepper, and resiny hop leaf. A sweet malt base interplays with tangy (yeast? wheat?) notes flawlessly. The body is quite light. The finish is tart and bitter.

The brewer changed the yeast this year and it seems to have been a very good call judging from older reviews of this. I was surprised to find out it is now 4% ABV. This is the ultimate summer beer.

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Black Oak Summer Saison from Black Oak Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.