FestiveAle | Rogue Ales

186 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Shaw on 09-26-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 186 | Ratings: 201
Photo of scruffwhor
3.31/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A semi hazy amber mixed with mediocre greets the eye with an intial plume of head and mild lacing after the first pour from my 22oz. bottle. The aroma was blander than I expected from any saison. Some herbas an spices noticed in the numerous whiffs. But nothing too specific. Although some earthy sweetness is noticed. The tase is like a good first try at a true Belgian Saison. The earthy herbal flavor is indeed captured in this brew by this domestically gfamous brew. But they don't pull it off as might be expected. This doesn't mean that Rogue is losing any Brownie points from me. Not a bad beer.

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Photo of cbl2
2.8/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

8/25/2006 $6.00 22 oz. 6.20% No best by date, but this is a winter release in August, and I got it off the close-out shelf, so I'm skeptical.


Pours a hazy light brown orange with an inch of large foam that settles within a moment or so.


Characteristicly funky barnyard saison aroma with hints of some mild ripe fruit.


Tart, course mouthfeel. Very funky earth flavor coupled with weird rib-eye and brown sugar flavor. This is some odd stuff, that I'm pretty sure I don't like.

Closeout and still $6, and mildly disgusting to boot? Not a fan.

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Photo of gunnerman
4/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice orange color with a very heavy thick head that stayed that entire drink and left some good lacing on mug. Smell is of fruits some apples with a bit of spice and cantolope in there as well. This has a very sweet taste to it with a bit of hoppy tart added in there as well. Beer went down very smooth and I did enjoy this from Rogue, but its not one of their best that they put out, still all in all very good offering.

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Photo of jettjon
3.73/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the pint-plus bottle, pours a dark orange translucent color with many small bubbles. Large, pillowy white-tan head that fades at a moderate pace leaving good lacing and a ½ finger solid cap. Good looking beer. Nose: not much going on here, maybe some alcohol and yeast. Beer was not that cold, so that wasn’t a factor. Taste… hmm. This was my first Saison so I didn’t know what I was looking for, but this was… muddled. No distinct flavor style at all. There’s some alcohol up front, again yeast, bittering to hops. The alcohol dominates the flavor. Hopsy bitterness is decent, but it doesn’t add much to the overall lackluster flavor. Don’t get me wrong; it’s not bad… it’s just a helluva lot less than I expected. Mouth feels semi-creamy toward the watery side, and is pretty bubbly. OK as far as that goes, nothing to write home about. Drinkability is just OK… it’s pretty smooth, but I wouldn’t want to drink more than one.

Overall: A pretty good ale, nothing to brag about, superior by far to any macro out there, but disappointing considering the quality of Rogue’s other offerings. I can’t speak to adherence to style, but to me, it just seemed like a generic, hopsy strong ale. Worth a try, but I wouldn’t run out to look for it.

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Photo of beertaster13
3.14/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a gorgeous nectar/honey with a huge foam/froth head. Beautiful to look at. The nose is light and floral, with a nice nectar honey aroma. Something just doesn't quite blend right however, a tee bit sour. The taste is light with a dull apple taste, a small hint of fruit orchards, grape and some honey grain. Not bad but something seems amiss. Light bodied and goes well with salads. Drinkable on hot days, but I expected more from Rogue.

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Photo of Redrover
3.23/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served on tap at Gibney’s in downtown Atlanta. Gibney’s has a decent beer list and there are not many better options in the immediate area (Near the Marriott Marquis).

Served in a special Rouge glass, the beer was a cloudy bronze with good lacing & a compact head.

Sweet candy nose with hints of malts.

The taste is very sweet (think hard candy) with some nice bitterness. As I worked through the beer it became a bit more grainy, but unfortunately it stayed way to sweet.

The mouth is pleasantly thick. To sweet to be sessionable but it is a somewhat enjoyable one off.

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Photo of cjgator3
2.53/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a beautiful golden amber color with a nice white head. Aroma is orange peel and yeast that is slightly peppery and quite tart. Taste is overly peppery and tart that leaves a strong bitter aftertaste. The taste is just not very pleasant at all. I love saisons but the taste does injustice to the style in my opinion. Some may like, but it is not for me.

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Photo of hero27
2.23/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22 oz bomber.
6.2% abv, 18 IBUs

Foggy golden amber color...rocky head of off-white foam, very little lacing, though. Aroma is some citrus with some light toffee malts and hints of peppery spices that go along with a macro-ish familiarity of metallic tinge..
Quite a bit of malt backing for flavor..overpowering really. The spices and Belgian yeast just don't shine through like they should.
High carbonation also makes it somewhat difficult to swallow..
Man, I thought I'd enjoy this one..but it was pretty much a mess all-around. Just not put together very well, in my opinion..

One of the few Rogue offerings that ranks low for me.

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Photo of RedDiamond
2.48/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer has no appeal to me. It moves in disjointed directions with a slightly soapy taste ending in a peppery bite. The ginger is edgy and it didn’t help matters to be served a flat-bodied pint at Rogue’s new Public House in Astoria. Stylistically, this beer is very un-Rogue, perhaps because Rogue abandons its hallmark yeast strain in favor of a Belgian import. It is densely unfiltered tarnished brass, headless, morose, and the aroma is a rank, corrupted spice.
A stylistic aberration.

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Photo of concussed
3.03/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Since this is my first review, and my first of this type of beer, I am not sure what to expect. It smells kind of dirty and stale and musty. The taste is soury and peppery. Lots or carbonation and a crisp and clean feel. Not too bad, but I think Iike others better.

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Photo of mynie
2.02/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Very pretty pour. Full sunny honey with a large, retentive head and great lacing. Too bad everything goes down hill after that...

The smell is of traditional saison spices that are beaten down by the odor of funky cheese, or feet. It doesn't have that cidery smell of a bacteria infested bottle--it just smells like spices and funk mixed with fruit.

The taste is a slight improvement. It's too sweet up front, lots of fruit, which moves into the spices--white pepper, mostly--and ends on the sour funk of the nose.

Most saisons grow on you. This one was just the opposite. It started bad and tasted worse and worse as the bomber went on. I had no problem finishing the first twelve ounces, but the last ten were a stretch.

This is the first Rogue beer I've had that I would call "bad." It isn't simply "not good." It sucks.

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Photo of hoppymeal
2.98/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours orange and cloudy with a two finger off white head that fades back rapidly. Fairly complex aroma with some tart lemony sweetness, cinnamon and spices and some herbal and grassy smell. Taste is cidery green apple tartness with some spices. There is a peppery bite at the end with a very light bitterness. Fairly light in body, has a sparkling quality to the carbonation that adds to the bite in the finish. Only downside is a little bit of a funky aftertaste, like burnt rubber, but this is not very strong or overwhelming. Not bad, maybe not a first choice, but I would drink this again.

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Photo of IntriqKen
3.85/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark tangerine cloudy glass with a very agressive white head that disappears quicklyto very smal lacing.
Aroma is predominately orange with some sort of earthy yeast smell.
Taste is dry slightly sour...oranges, tangerines, finishing to a sour bitterness.
Aftertaste is dry and sour with slight orange.

I enjoyed this beer...I didn't really notice the spices, but the dry sourness of a saison definately came through for me.
I will buy it again.

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Photo of Zorro
3.08/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sampled through the efforts of 120/190 BIF and lostbearbrew.

Pours a near clear apricot colored ale with a respectable white head.

Smell is sweet and fruity for a Saison. Smells too sweet with a cotton candy aroma and a bit of buttery smell. Spice is present only as a vague sour scent.

Taste is dry despite the smell with the flavor of melon in the first sip. Not real heavy in the flavor department coriander and hop bitterness shows up, but there is this annoying caramel corn flavor here that shouldn't be there. Mild peppery flavor of alcohol is noticeable.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Not a great Saison here. The flavor is off and not very strong in the first place. This should be a dry refreshing beer; it is a buttery corny mess in the glass. Forgettable and not really worth finishing the glass of it.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.74/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Also at Smokin' Joe's one of two JLS series the bartender wasn't sure what this was but said it's a Belgian style I'm saying it's the Saison from the JLS series. Appears a golden semi cloudy hue with a large white quickly dwindling head leaves fine lacing around the glass. Aroma has a slight spice character with a touch of honey orange blossom esque tones flowery might as well lay down in a field during spring time somewhere but much less dramatic and much more tame considering I really had to focus to detect those tones. Taste of course a florally hopped belgian style some more spice notes coming through herbal, citrus, and what turns out to be ginger and myrtle my two distant cousins these tones blend in with a biscuit orange blossom honey taste that works in the end. Mouthfeel is light to medium in body spices coat the palate yet it's hard to pick each one out individually the carbonation isn't as fine as the typical Belgian saison. Drinkability refreshing and interesting but I'll pass on this one and order another Frosty Frog.

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Photo of rokoch27
3.18/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The champagne of beers? I think we have a new champion! The cap popped off this bottle like a bottle of champagne and then poured with an enormous head. Spice and yeast in the aroma and then a metallic taste. The body is more like a cloudy apple cider. Honestly, this beer isn't really anything special like the other Rogue beers I have tried. While unique in some respects, it does not make me want to have it again sometime.

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Photo of BeerManDan
4.3/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Absolutley a very good tasting beer. But, you'll have to let it warm up a little.

The color when poured was a deep hazy golden yellow with loads of foam, but very little lace on the side of the glass. The smell was of herbs and spices. I could really pick up cloves and coriander with the first smell. What a pleasant aroma. The taste was absoultley fantastic, for me. It was a well balanced Festive Ale, with all the trimmings. Cloves, coriander, orange to name just a few. Maybe letting it sit around for half a year and not getting this ale to cold could be a plus when drinking this ale.

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Photo of rabsten
3.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber into a pint glass. Cloudy gold-amber color; thick, sno-cone like head. Lacing is thick, with little "foam ridges" on the side of the glass.

Crisp, hoppy smell.

Tastes sweet. Some fruitiness I couldn't identify (bananas or cherries or something). Spicy finish that reminds me of Unibroue products, without a certain flavor Unibroue has I don't care for (I know I'll catch flack for this, but I think there's a kind of "burnt plastic" taste to their beer). Flavor grows stronger with each sip.

Heavy on the palate, with an astringency that makes it not terribly drinkable. It wears on you.

I liked this beer fine at first, then it went downhill. Still a decent beer, but I think half a bomber is about the right serving for me. But, to be fair, it's also not may favorite style. I felt this way about DFH's Raison D'etre at first, but grew to really enjoy it later. So perhaps I just need some more time with it.

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Photo of scottoale
3.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml.brown bottle with three color silk-screened label pours a hazy apricot-orange with a two-finger lofty white capping. The head settles to a nice cream covering as well as some lacing.

Kind of a funky spice, malt nose with earthy and yeasty aroma lingering in the background. Doesn't smell particularly sweet per se, more of a tangy tartness and a wiff of alcohol set the stage here. It has a Belgian authenticity about it, as far as the overall smell is concerned. Hints of orange come through stronger as it warms a little.

Kind of musty, earthy malt and yeast start off in a fizzy fashion. It tames down a bit and the spices of this Saison meld into the alcoholic warming that finishes a wee bit tart. Not bitter...so to speak, citric and tart.

This stuffs got some body and a lively, that smooths out, kind of mouthfeel. Definitely a spicy, interesting beer that even packs some punch.

If you like to be adventurous and try the un-ordinary, this beer is all of that...cheers.

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Photo of irishmoss
3.07/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This bomber opened with a loud “champagne-like” explosion, the bottle-cap might have hit the ceiling if it wasn’t firmly in my clutches. I tried to gently pour this into my La Chouffe tulip, but I did this in vain, there was no holding back this mountainous head. Layers of frothy sea foam clumsily fall about each other as they attempt to escape my glass; this leaves the glass littered with patches and specks. This pours a murky rusted orange color with an absolute ton of debris floating through it, an edible pulpy mass. The aroma is spicy with earthy undertones, perhaps citrus and coriander. The flavor is similar to the fragrance, but it has a more intense yeasty spice assault. There are some malt and hop qualities that are subordinate to the spice, just too much going on here. The mouthfeel was very effervescent and bubbly, very carbonated. All the different spices and flavors happening here are like a jigsaw puzzle that my tongue couldn’t quite put together. I was looking for something different here, and that’s what I got, but overall, I was underwhelmed and unimpressed.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

05-03-06- Purchased at Bottle Barn in Santa Rosa.

Presentation- 22oz bottle. No freshness date given. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Amber colored pour. Fairly clear until the yeast dumped in. Then it became a cloudy orange. Super huge moutainous large bubbled pock marked head. Dies down, but still leaves a good 1/2 inch plus over the entire glass. Nice chunks of lace left behind.

Smell- Smells like a saison. No super farmhouse scent, but lots of white pepper, corriander and lemon peel.

Taste- At first there was a rather large metallic twang. After the taste settles down a nice powdered sugar flavor kicks in followed by some white pepper and lemon peel. Maybe even some ginger detected. Light hoppy aftertaste in the finish.

Mouthfeel- Besides the off metallic flavor it has a bit of a heavy carbonation.

Drinkability- Get rid of the metal taste and you have a decent job with a american version of a saison. Even with it, it's not that bad.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.18/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Prying the cap off the bottle, there's a very loud gasp of carbonation exiting as quickly as possible. Even gently pouring into a wine glass quickly produces a huge, tan, meringue-like head. The carbonation appears very intense amidst the golden, murky body. As a result of this high carbonation level, the head remains for quite some time and produces some excellent lacing and clustering of foam along the sides of the glass.
Raising the glass to my nose allows for the ability to absorb aromas of lemony citrus, Belgian yeast, candy sugar and perhaps a bit of ginger. Taste is at first a bit spicy, sharp, and citrusy along with some Belgian yeast notes. This opens up into a flavor that's a bit more malty than expected of the style, blurring into the same candy sweetness as in the nose, and finishing with bitter, yeasty tones. Depth is not very apparent nor is complexity as is usual in the style, but the taste is still relatively good.
Mouthfeel is surprisingly medium-thick, a bit too heavy for the style. Carbonation is fitting with the fuller body, but still somewhat high. This is an interesting beer, but not exactly on-spot for a saison. I'm not sure when I'd seek it out again, at least not if I was in the mood for a saison, but it's still fairly good in its own, unique way.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.83/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy deep amber with golden highlights. Thin white head fades quickly to a thin collar. Minor lacing. Medium body. Somewhat restrained carbonation. Yeasty, wheaty, and malty in the nose. Some minor fruitiness. Quite basic. Lacking Belgian character. The flavor is fuller but with the same yeast, wheat malt with a drop of candy sweetness, some mild yeasty fruitiness, leafy hops, and a nice touch of spice.

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Photo of DogFood11
2.82/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pretty hard to manage the pour on this pup...started very slow like usual and found that I had to crank it down even more to a turtle like pace to keep this under control. Loose sea foam type head w/ no lacing capability. No holding back the incredibly aggressive large carb bubbles.

I kept searching for some sort of farmhouse quality but I couldnt find it, with that being said I'm evaluating this as an ale and not by style. Christmasy type spices fill the air and are quite the dominant force. This has a citrus twinge to it that reminds me of a fully ripe tangerine. It's a creative attempt at a saison and regardless of style this brew just comes up short in a number of areas, namely taste and drinkability. Slightly astringent and metallic trying to fight through the zippy carbonated body.

Notes: I absolutely adore Rogue, this is a small blip on the radar screen.

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Photo of Roguester
2.96/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Had tonight from the 22oz bottle bought from the pearl district ale house. Smell and appearance were average I suppose, however after the first sip the only thing that came to mind are incredible bitterness and for some reason old cheese. I've had a few saisons before, and I wouldnt say I'm a fan exactly, but regardless of style, I can say this beer fails to engage me in any way. No way would I purchase again. I love Rogue to death but along with the very dissapointing "Dad's special helper malt liquor" this is very unpleasant.

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FestiveAle from Rogue Ales
3.32 out of 5 based on 201 ratings.
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