Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) | Smuttynose Brewing Company

BA SCORE
87
very good
667 Ratings
Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company
New Hampshire, United States
smuttynose.com

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
15 IBU

2008 - 7.0%
2009 - 8.8%
2010 - 9.3%
2013 - 7.0%
2014 - 7.2% brewed with Pineapple Sage

Added by Bierman9 on 02-12-2006

BEER STATS
Ratings:
667
Reviews:
399
Avg:
3.88
pDev:
13.14%
 
 
Wants:
49
Gots:
44
For Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 667 |  Reviews: 399
Photo of Bassetdawg
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: bomber, dated brewed in 2007

Appearance: slightly clouded golden. Pours with two fingers of creamy white foam, with good retention, and fine lacing.

Aroma: citrus fruit, yeast and a bit of clove – very pleasant.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Smooth mouthfeel. Orange, clove and a bit of black pepper taste. A funky taste with a smooth finish

Drinkability: This is a fine saison, another great beer in the Big Beer series.

 433 characters

Photo of Minkybut
2.22/5  rDev -42.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I poured this beer into my tumbler at 50 degrees. The beer was a nice golden color, yellow like a regulard brew. The smell was bready yeasty. the beer had a nice head. Thats all i can say good about it. The taste was skunky bad yuk hell no. i had to pour the whole thing dow the drain. So sorry but NO, I will not buy this beer again,, And I like most Smuttynose products, but not this one.

 390 characters

Photo of John_M
4.47/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I generally like Smuttynose beers and think them a fine brewery. That being said, I was stunned by the quality of this beer the other night. I ordered the 3 for 4 (three 10 oz beers for $4) at Mahaffey's the other night and quickly pushed aside the Dominion Winter and Anchor special ale and just drank this.

The beer pours a honey gold peach color with fair head retention and good lacing. The beer was very spicey and lively on the nose with nuances of rose, ginger and white pepper. The beer smelled great, but was even better on the palate. The beer has moderate sweetness with flavors of banana, bubble gum and orange. The beer is very light on its feet and carrries its 7.5% alcohol very well. The beer is incredibly drinkable and I was absolutely shocked to see the abv. as high as it is. The beer has a soft, almost creamy finish and is just delicious.

This is one of the best (perhaps the best) domestic farmhouse/saison I have ever had. A very impressive beer from Smuttynose.

Edit: Am trying this beer on tap again today on 8/1/10. While this beer is still very good. Smuttynose has obviously changed the recipe considerably since I first reviewed this beer in 12/07. A far cry from the 7.5% listed on this site, the 2010 version clocks in at 9.3% and shows it. The beer is still quite delicious, but the alcohol is starting to show, and I don't think it really helps the flavor profile in this beer. Really don't see the need to "imperialize" this excellent beer, but that's just my opinion.

 1,506 characters

Photo of Bighuge
4.47/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep golden body. Clarity is almost perfect. Head is small and bubbly. Off white in color. Lace comes in sparsely placed patches. Great nose of honey and hay and pepper and dough. Nice barnyard character on the palate, though not overbearing. I like the doughy yeasiness and bready malt base a lot. This is very easy on the buds. A little lemon and a little peppery spiciness add some complexity. Very well rounded. Mouthfeel is very easy going. Medium bodied and lightly carbonated. A very enjoyable saison.

 508 characters

Photo of sinstaineddemon
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - this saison pours cloudy dark ornage, with a thick white head kept aloft by huge amounts of streaming carbonation, small bits of sediment at the bottom of my glass

S - holy yeast! big yeasty/bready aroma with strong a spice presence (clove/coriander), plus some citrus zest

T - wow, very sweet, not acrid at all as i expected it to lean towards, a nice sugary sweetness balancing out the saison spiciness that i sensed in the aroma, masterfully balanced

M&D - so super smooth, especially for a saison, almost velvety, easy down, one of the most drinkable saisons i have ever tasted, well done smuttynose

 610 characters

Photo of DaggerEyes
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The 22 oz bomber poured a slightly hazy light amber. Lots of beads of carbonation rising to the surface which was capped off with a fluffy head that was 2 fingers high and a shade just slighty off from white. the head shrunk to roughly half a finger high but from there had excellent retention, held through to the end. Patchy fine lacing clung.

The first scent that hits the nose is straight up clove, lots of spice, a bit peppery. Some banana comes into play. A little bit funky. It all just gets better as it warms up a bit, the earthy tones come to the front more.

The clove is forward on the taste, with some hints of bubble gum. Peppery as it lingers in the mouth. Wonderfully aftertaste of honey, grapes and pineapple. The pineapple is perhaps most accurate and pronounced.

Active carbonation on the tip of the tongue but that fades out quickly, medium bodied pretty smooth, much fuller in the mouth than I had expected with a clean finish and a dry after taste.

A pretty great beer, especially for the fairly low price tag it sports, I'll be picking it up again in the future for sure

 1,099 characters

Photo of Wasatch
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to Jredner for this brew.

Pours a cloudy golden orange color, nice carbonation, tiny fizzy white head, which leaves some small islands and sticky lacing around the edges. The nose is mostly malty, some yeast, and spices. The taste is very malty/sweet for a Saison, the typical yeast, cloves, slight caramel. Medium body. Very drinkable, a very tasty Saison, also another awesome brew from Smuttynose.

 417 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of JJPM74: Poured a deep orangey color ale with a big foamy head with good retention but minimal lacing. Aroma of fruity ester with some nice medium sweet Belgian malt. Taste is also dominated by some nice fruity ester probably coming from the yeast that was used with some nice medium sweet Belgian malt and a subtle dry hoppy ending. Body was quite full with a somewhat oily texture and some good carbonation. I thought this was a bit too sweet and somewhat cloying when compared to the staples of the style.

 526 characters

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber, served in a pint glass.

A - clear, golden color with a white head that thinned to a ring, leaving spots of lacing.

S - sweet malt, spices and yeast aromas.

T - good tasting brew, complex balance of spices, malts and yeast flavors.

M - light bodied, crisp carbonation.

D - good tasting, easy drinking brew.

 323 characters

Photo of skivtjerry
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours with normal, not Belgian, carbonation. Probably, the bottle can't take more CO2. Nice clear straw color. Small persistent head.

Smell: malt, spices and cotton candy. Hop aroma blends seamlessly into the other spicy aromas. There is something there I can't quite define, sort of the smell of very fresh air after a storm.

Taste: malt, noble hops and the aforementioned cotton candy. finishes with a nice lactic tang.

Mouthfeel: just right. Very refreshing, not cloying as many domestic 'saisons' are. Good hop bitterness dries the palate out just enough at the end.

Drinkability: dangerously high. Every sip is a pleasure. My new favorite 'American saison'. Higher carbonation and a touch more hop aroma would bump the drinkability up to a 5 in my book.

 774 characters

Photo of gpcollen1
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Smutty Big Beer Glass. Head rises an inch or so and settles quickly. No head like some of the Belgian's, where you have to pour 2 or 3 times to get a glass. Aroma is decidedly spicy with hoppy overtones. Hints of sweetness weave in and out.

Taste hits lightly sweet and the hops quickly carry through. The sweet and spicy yeast combine with the hops perfectly. This one may not be typically Belgian but may be one of the finest American Saisons and one of Smutty's finest.

 488 characters

Photo of TexIndy
4.42/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a trade with johnnnniee - many thanks! Poured from a 650ml bottle with a 2007 date on the label into my DT tulip. It was a hazy golden honey color. It barely had a head and that was quickly gone. No lacing and slight carb. The aroma was spicy and orange with the usual corriander. It was a little fruitier than most saisons and didn't have that typical "dry" smell to it. The taste followed the aroma and again had a more spicy/fruity than dry finish. Really liked this one as the very dry ones leave me thirsty for a water chaser. This is my first Smuttynose and looking forward to trying more. Highly recommend if you can find it as it's a very limited release. (4.5, RR, T, Y)

 686 characters

Photo of BuckSpin
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: v.2007 22oz bottle in a Duvel tulip glass

Poured with some energy, a little surge, lively. Faint sourness on the nose, classic Saison, the Belgian yeast strain evident immediately. Grassy notes, mild honey sweetness, a little dusty, sourdough bread, mild cheese. As it breathes it shows some apple cider aspects as well as a "wet" quality, like being on the lake. It never ceases to amaze me that such a simple beer, the beer of the farmer, made with what they had & meant for summer consumption, always (at least the good ones) have such complexity to them & are fantastic autumnal beers.

The head was a finger;s worth of mixed, loose winter white foam that steadily faded but never disappeared, settling to a pencil's worth with some nice edge lacing. Hazy, just slightly clouded, the dried apricot hued body has a soft, warm luminescence to it...inviting.

Those Belgian yeastie beasties did their job nicely - classic coriander & clove qualities ring thru in a semi-dry, semi-sour tongue-feel. Fruit sweetness from banana & apple are present, working with the sweet malts to add some counterbalance to the spiced aspect. It is amazingly easy to drink, and I'm trying to slow down to allow it to really open up more...as well as enjoy it longer! Actually, I'm in no hurry...what's the rush?

A final repour, accompanied by a gentle bottle swirl, releases the bulk of the sediment & yeast into the glass, which is now definitely clouded over. What was already a very nice Saison has gotten better with that hazy goodness. A bread crust-like bitterness now adds a final level of taste. The result is a wonderfully refreshing mouthfeel that screams for simple food, food of the land, prepared simply. Fruit (non-citrus), cheese, dried sausage, artisan loaves, wild game, fish...it would all work.

Growing softer & rounder on the palate, it really evens & levels out, losing any dryness it had as it takes on a apple cider-like sweetness (with a hint of banana) and finishes surprisingly bitter, sharp, even angular, leaving a chewy, sticky aftertaste full of mild clove, banana, soft coriander and even some damp bread.

A damn good Saison, and one of the best domestic interpretations I've had. I really enjoyed this. It has no dull or dead spots of note, and in the spirit of their simplistic complexity has a variety of taste & mouthfeel aspects to enjoy. I would most certainly recommend this and definitely enjoy it annually if available. A great bang for the buck, check it out!

 2,501 characters

Photo of yelterdow
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2007 bottle conditioned vintage. Served at just over fridge temperature in a tasting tulip. Paired with sushi and sashimi for dinner.

Appearance- Pours an incandescent, very clear burnished orange, supporting a fat soapy crown. Fast, active carbonation streams from the etching at the base of my glass... the lacing is sticky and in abundance.

Smell- The Belgian saison yeast imparts a spicy, fruity, slightly tart lemony nose that carries an earthiness right alongside. Fragrant and floral, it's more colorful than most typical Belgian offerings.

Taste- Lots going on here, this one's *packed* with flavor. The dominating spiciness brings with it plenty of fruit (I'm getting more of a peach/nectarine character) with hints of lemon and pepper.

Mouthfeel- An *exceptional* mouthfeel, the best in any category I've had in months. Liquid seafoam, sturdy yet sublime. Creamy. Phenomenal.

Drinkability- Though a bit "weighty" in its strength, this beer is undeniably one of Smuttynose's finest works and a total pleasure to have enjoyed. I wouldn't have more than one or two of these for the sake of myself and my guests, but it's a fantastically bold example of the style. This actually overpowered the sushi... lesson learned, bold is not better when it comes to raw fish and rice.

 1,288 characters

Photo of Rudgers73
4.29/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served at The Old Toad, Rochester, NY.

Pours a glowing yellowish orange with a decent amount of cloudiness. Not much for a head, (if it had a really nice head I would have upped the appearance to a 4 or 4.5). The smell is wonderful. A big whiff of orange peel, belgian yeast providing a mellow, round, clove smell, and the end is dry with hops (maybe goldings?) The taste is also wonderful with a dry, peppery, earthy start working up to a bold fresh citrus that slowly fades into a clove and bitter hop ending. Nice and dry. Lots of flavor. The mouthfeel is smooth, crisp, clean but the amount of orange flavor makes it almost sticky at times. A great, and americanized (nothing subtle about the flavor) example of one of my favorite belgian beer types.

 756 characters

Photo of Nipitato
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber at Julio's Liquors in Westborough, MA.

A: Copper hue. Glowing brilliant clarity despite yeast sediment. Thin off white head. Tiny carbonation bubbles.

S: Nice floral and fruity aroma. Subtle alcohol aroma. some clove phenols. Floral hop aroma. Candy sugar and honey aromas. Pear scented ester aromas.

T: Tastes of candy sugar and honey. Almost overly sweet. Pear flavored esters peek through. Some spicy tastes. A bitter finish.

MF: Quite effervescent. Slightly dry finish. Medium body.

D: As usual a good offering form the Big Beer Series. Good beer for sessioning -despite the overly sweet candy sugar taste.

 634 characters

Photo of Slatetank
4.17/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I Tried this on tap a KClinger's Tavern in Hanover PA.
Served cool in a standard pint.
A - Hazy, medium amber w/ a half inch of tan head, some lace is apparent.

S - Slightly funky, belgian style yeast aroma w/ slightly sweet citrus nose.

M - Medium body w/ a tangy, mildly carbonated feel. There are gentle hints of spice w/ a nice malt presence and subtle hop spiciness.

T - A mild flavor of wheat w/ nice citrus flavor that doesn't go overboard. Some light pepper and herbal tea-like flavors in the mix. A pleasant dry toasted malt flavor and delicated hop accent w/ herbal qualities.

D - A mild farmhouse w/ little funkiness, very smooth, a quaffer. I could drink multiples of this w/ no problem. It seems a bit restrained for the style, yet still has very drinkable qualities.

 786 characters

Photo of mshallah
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale amber color that's only slightly hazy. Fluffy, sudsy, foamy head of two fingers which recedes slowly. Belgian yeast spice of clove and white pepper in the nose. Mandarin orange citrus fruitiness. Taste is what it is. A mellow Belgian style pale ale that is easy to drink with sweet, mildly toasty malt and a sour tartness from the yeast. A mellow, well rounded saison. Fruity and delicious.

 395 characters

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a staw yellow / orange-ish color with a nice white head. Aromas that are yeasty with fruity notes. As in the taste, yeasty, spicey and hints of fruitiness. A yeasty mouthfeel, and a spicey aftertaste. A nice yeasty saison, fruity and spicey in the right places. Smooth and nice, and a very good beer.

 306 characters

Photo of Atlas1
4.27/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I shared this bomber with my wife last week. We both loved it. This review is based on the notes I jotted down at the time.

The appearance is a pretty apricot color with a thin bubbly head. Lots of carbonation. It's a nice color for a saison, but otherwise it's nothing special. The nose is beautiful. A sweet and spicy aroma wafts up from the glass. Notes of fruit - peach, apricot, banana, impress upon the drinker a light, springtime atmosphere; perfect for a saison. The taste is very light but peppery as well. It almost evokes thoughts of a light fruit soda (think Nehi Peach), but not in a bad way. This beer is so utterly delightful it's a shame when the glass begins to run low. Mouthfeel is smooth, almost creamy, and firm.

The Farmhouse Ale is an excellent beer in my opinion. It's a big saison (which is a great idea; nicely done, Smuttynose!), but despite the high ABV, it goes down very easily. Almost too easily, perhaps. Cheers for this fine beer.

 967 characters

Photo of Jmamay22
3.67/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I love trying new Smuttynose beers as they have yet to disappoint me.

This big beer pours a golden orange with a head that disipates to a thin collar, but there appears to be plenty of carbonation. The poor head retention has led to poor lacing.

This saison has all of the typical qualities in the nose including a sour funk and spice. There is a hint of grassy lemoney hops that give the nose a finishing twang. Lurking in the background are notes of lightly toasted malts.

Tastes of spices such as clove and pepper along with a zesty farmhouse yeasty funk. This saison is a little sweeter than most I've had in the past and features greater orange flavoring that finishes with a bit of a hot alcohol bite.

Mouthfeel is medium and the carbonation makes the alcohol finish a little difficult as it warms, which hurts its drinkability. This isn't my top saison, but it's an interesting twist and worth a try.

 913 characters

Photo of ksbrainard
4.22/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Bright gold yellow color with a thin head.

S - Somewhat sour, then spicy as expected for Saison. A bit of malt sweetness peeks in there. Also subtle hop aroma.

T - Big bitter taste coats the tongue and alcohol numbs the mouth. Both the hops and alcohol are assertive in a good way. There is also a bit of sweetness of apples present.

M - I'd say medium-high body. It has a detectable sweetness, but not overly sticky. Still probably a bit more than I'd prefer, but not bad.

D - Great! This is tasty and interesting, and if I had more than one here I'd probably have another right after this one.

 603 characters

Photo of Brad007
4.5/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For my 200th review, I've decided to review this beer. This is probably the only one in the Big Beer series that I've seen around here.

Poured into a goblet. Color is a very nice amber/brown hue with minimal head. Aroma is bold, spicy and malty. Somewhat sweet as well. Taste is much of the same. It starts off warm and spicy, almost chewy. The mouthfeel is really nice as it leaves a sweetness on the back of the tongue. Well-balanced and pretty much what I expect from a saison. A second sip confirms much of the same. The alcohol is well-masked and is barely noticeable.

As for the style, I think it's closer than other saisons I've reviewed. I would rate it higher because of this. An excellent sipping beer.

 719 characters

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.55/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This 2007 version was sampled in a large wine goblet. (which seemed to really impove the overall drinking experoence for this brew.)

AP: A slighty frosted orange-hued amber color that is brilliant and vivid, like technicolor!! tiny, tiny bubbles look active and create a 1" bubbly, lively white head that dissiptes in a moderate fasion and leaves only a tiny island of foam in the middle of the glass.

Nose: sour Herbal, Belgian-like yeast with it's zesty, earthy and mossy aroma's, sweet buttery malt with a slight fruity and tart whiff and major spiciness and pepper effects.

Flavor:Starts out with a dry, herbal and yeastie spicey and pepper kick with dry toffee malt with an instant red-fruits flavor, plenty of tangy citric acid-like kick. Spicey, peppery yeast flavor that takes over for a while, which is fine because the yeast and malt flavors blend together perfectly and highlight each other's best qualities. The tangy,dry but smooth malt flavor really jumps out when paired with some Gouda or extra-sharp cheddar cheese. "lip-smacking palateability" the lable states...and it's right on. This one is very much like a fine Belgian Tripel in many ways.

Feel: Medium body, crisp, lively and refreshing, but goes down smooth,dry peppery in the middle with a slightly boozy overtone. a full, smooth feel with plenty of complexity to spare.

DA: This is based on 2007 and 2010 bottles and they seem to be very consistant year anfer year. A high quality Saison for sure!

Updated with a 2010 bomber.

 1,510 characters

Photo of arguemaniac
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a surprisingly clear amber with a frothy, well-sustained white head. The palate offers plenty of clovey spice and yeasty phenols but none of the flavors are too sharp or cloying.

A slightly mellower example of the style as the spice profile is more rounded and the bright malt character isn’t too sweet. Still, it’s rich enough with all the classic character of a Farmhouse ale.

Recommended…

 406 characters

Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
3.88 out of 5 based on 667 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe