Southampton Peconic County Reserve Ale | Southampton Publick House

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Southampton Peconic County Reserve AleSouthampton Peconic County Reserve Ale
79 Ratings
Southampton Peconic County Reserve AleSouthampton Peconic County Reserve Ale

Brewed by:
Southampton Publick House
New York, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-21-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 79 |  Reviews: 31
Photo of cpetrone84
3.63/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a light golden orange with aright white head. The nose is sweet, lots of grapes, light mint note, hint of creamy lactic. The taste has a ton of white grapes, rather sour and sweet. faint mint and rather acidic. Medium body, a bit juicy and maybe a touch dry.

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.65/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light yellow to amber color. Gently diminishing off-white head. Aroma is rather juicy, floral with various hints of leather, pear, grapes, juniper, heather, flowers. Rasin bread flavour from the well blended yeast and malt. Very vinous, very dry white wine like. Leather aftertaste. This leaves a nice juicy saliva though. Okay, so I absolutely love Southampton and the best of the fruit beers are up there with my favourite beers, but I felt a bit let down with this one. I guess it was just a bit too comparable with white wine which I usually don’t enjoy that much. I sure was taken aback by such dryness in a fruit beer and while I’ll be the first one to rant about the fake-tasting synthetic syrupy sweet ones, I don’t doubt that Southampton could have done an amazing sweet grapes concoction to get 4.5+ while I don’t see a very dry one getting much more than 4.0 from me. Don’t bother for me though since everyone seems to moderately enjoy this.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.7/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to whoever shared this bottle at Zwanze Day; was very cool to see this opened. 1996 vintage, poured into a taster.

a - Pours a golden-orange color with one inch of off white head and low carbonation evident.

s - Smells of old bread, biscuit malts, grapes, lemon, spice, light oak and funk, earthy notes, and some hay. Lightly funky which is nice and lightly tart.

t - Tastes of bready, grapes, wine, lemon, citrus, hay, earthy notes, funk, oak, nuts, dough, biscuit malts, and some light mustiness. Nice but kind of old-tasting.

m - Light body and low carbonation. Pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall this was very cool to try, but seemed past its prime to me. It wasn't very funky or sour and was a bit old/musty; would love to get a newer bottled and try it again. Probably wouldn't seek out the 1996 version.

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.87/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 1996
750 ml bottle with gold foil over a capped, wet cork.
Stored on it's side since 1997.

Pours clear gold with orange hues, moderate white porous head.
Crackling effervesense diminishes quickly, leaving behind a placid surface with but a few whisps of white.
Musty and dry nose. Fruity with lemon zest, juniper berries, and grape must. Hints of tonic water, apple skin, and stale gum wrapper.
Nose finishes with light pepper notes and dried mint.
Light to medium bodied, subdued carbonation and tart.
Dry, fruity, and tannic on the pallet.
Lemon pith, spent white grapeskins, and warming spices.
Heavily laced with a vineous white-wine type character, with a subdued funk.
Finishes with a tart yeast bite and additional pepper-spiked lemon zest.

Apparently past prime, with subdued carbonation and a bit tame.
The vineous profile is in the forefront, with saison qualities in the shadows.

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Photo of axeman9182
3.98/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle from the 2011 batch, allowed to warm slightly before being poured into my Duvel tulip.

Peconic County Reserve pours a slightly hazy tangerine at first, but after the second pour it's almost entirely opaque. The pure white head only rises to only about two fingers in height, and while retention is alright, there's no real lacing to speak of. The nose is strongly of chardonnay, with a strong background note of earthy brett funk in there as well. It's a combination that works incredibly well. At first the chardonnay doesn't come through so well, it's more of a vinous acidity that blends with the funk. As the beer warms though, the particulars of the chardonnay grape varietal shine through a bit more. There's still tartness to the beer, but it's a bit more of a complementary flavor. The body is just a tad heavy for my personal taste, but certainly well within the parameters for the style. The carbonation though is a bit dull, and lets the mouthfeel get a little too slick for the beer's own good. This beer may have been in some part a victim of high expectations (brewed with grapes and barrel aged from the guy who wrote the book on saisons), but I'd like to think that didn't diminish my enjoyment of what was a good (but not great) brew.

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Photo of waddellc2
4/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of GeorgiaBeerGuy
4/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of HitchSlap
4/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of JAXSON
4/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a bottle, thanks to Jim. Poured a clear medium gold with a large sticky head. Nose is heavy on white grapes, quite a bit of oak, seems like some earthy brett in there also. Brett is surprisingly heavy and expresses itself as sweaty socks. Similar to Castleton in the nose. Some acidity in the front palate, lots of grapes mid palate, finish is long and all brett. Interesting to see Southampton doing something like this. Some residual sweetness on the finish. Feel is a bit light and thin. Not extraordinarily complex but well executed. As good as the recent batches of Castleton and oddly similar, though not as tight and integrated as the first batches were.

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Photo of SkunkWorks
4/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle from the 2011 Southampton IRS release, poured into an oversized wine glass.

Look: hazy, straw colored gold with half a finger of foamy, white head that doesn't have much in the way of retention. The head ends up being a few speckles of foam here and there and some bubbles hugging the side of the glass. Leaves patches of lacing and the lacing disappears somewhat quickly as well.

Smell: vinous, grape filled nose with some acidic aromas as well.

Taste: follows the nose and is incredibly vinous, tasting almost like a carbonated wine (unfortunately, I very rarely drink wine and so I can't comment in any detail as to what wine tastes I'm getting). A little funky with some brett and a heavy grape flavor and a lot of tangy, tartness and fairly sour. There's a bit of citrus and bready malt, but for the most part this tastes very unlike a beer. Some character from the wine barrel also comes out as well. The level of funk and sourness lead me to believe this isn't really a saison at all, and that it might be better categorized as an American wild ale. This is a complex beer for sure.

Feel: medium to light in body, dry, tart, and sour. Moderate carbonation. I found it to be a sipper.

Overall: this was certainly an interesting beer. I'm not so into the sour scene, truthfully, but I still enjoyed it. The grapes made it a little too much like wine for my taste, but everything else about this beer was pleasing and this beer should be something you look for if you can, especially if you're a fan of Southampton. Cheers!

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Photo of AgentZero
4.07/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Golden body, a little bit hazy, with a white head that only left a little bit of lace behind.

S - A very vinous quality to this one, particularly as it relates to a grape aroma. There was a lot of wood in there as well, with some small notes of yeast.

T - Sweet, with some grape notes and lots more wine qualities. A lot of oak and some funk notes that don't damage some of the lighter flavors in the profile.

M - Exceptionally dry, a little too much for my liking. Reminds me a bit of drinking champagne as far as the body and carbonation goes.

O - Nice beer. The nose is really nice and the taste is good as well, although the dryness to the finish is just a bit much for me. I think this is a beer that a lot of people will like.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.17/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage. Poured from a foiled and capped 750ml bottle into Lost Abbey stemware.

Pour yields a 1 finger foamy white head with great retention. Beer is a semi-clear golden peach. Lacing is thick and patchy but sticks closely to the head. Decent.

Nose is spritzy. Clean white grape tartness with some sprinkled in yeast and soapy spice notes. Very subtle but enjoyable.

Opens slightly tart white grape skin. Clean straw and band-aid notes. More white grape tartness in the middle. Yeasty. Some sweet cane sugar and residual booziness towards the end with a spicy finish and a subtle tart aftertaste. Really impressive. Flavors are incredibly subtle but delicious!

Light bodied and highly carbonated. Bubbly and champagne-y in the mouth and goes down slightly dry and tart. Finish is clean with a slightly lingering aftertaste. Perfect for the style.

This beer is a real revelation in the style. The body of a saison but the taste is that of an incredibly well-balanced and subtle American Wild Ale. I'm gonna have to get a couple more bottles of this to age.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.23/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle split among a few of us. Thanks go once again to Stakem for opening this rarity up for us.

Pours a hazed grapefruit color in the glass, topped with roughly a ½ finger of creamy bright-white head. This retains at nearly the same width and just drenches the sides of the glass with heavy and thick swathes of lacing. The aroma is vinous and oaky in the nose, with some contributing funk as well. This is very tannic and a touch acidic at times, with a tough of vanilla and sugary sweetness on the edges.

The taste has a good bit of a tart and fresh grape character to it, with bitter skin and fruity dry wine notes really standing out to me. This definitely has a bit of a sour edge to it, but nothing too acidic feeling. The edges of the profile are dry and woody, while some sweet sugary character from the malts hangs in the background. The finish is dry and tart with just a touch of lingering acidity. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a LOT of slick tannins giving this a slippery feel in the mouth. The alcohol is nicely hid here and combines with the soft creaminess of the carbonation to really keep this as drinkable as possible.

This was really nice. The grapes and wine barrel really worked off of each well and all of those fruit and oak flavors were well balanced and approachable considering all of the complexity and dryness that was present. Thanks again for sharing this one Adam. It’s too bad that they can’t release this every year.

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Photo of DucksFan16
4.23/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.24/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a lightly hazy straw-copper color. It is topped by a big-bubbled white head that is of a quite decent size. There is a great fruity grape aroma that is mixed with a musty herbal spiciness. This has an intriguing, absolutely wonderful aroma to it. The taste is mellow up front, which leads to a prickly sensation in the middle from the ample carbonation, to a finish that is austere and wine-like in its acidic character. The finish is quite sharp, it grabs you at first, but mellows a bit with time. This beer really mellows quite a bit as my palate gets used to it. The acidity does remain, it just becomes a bit rounder.

There is a nice wine-grape character in the second half of each sip. The combination of the carbonation and the grape character really give this a noticeable acidity. There is quite a bit of herbal character here, that is contributed by the chardonnay grapes. As a beer this is not nearly as good as it is when looked at as a marriage between grape and grain. The marriage wins out, perhaps, and gives this beer an added boost.

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Photo of BobbysLiquors
4.25/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of MJR
4.25/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2002 vintage 750ml corked and caged bottle

Clear, pale gold with a hint of orange. Tight, dense off white head with good retention and lacing. Sharp and refreshing aroma of tart wheat, white grapes, grass, lemony citrus, slightly musty yeast, medicinal phenols, and apple-like fruitiness.

Flavor begins with a small splash of medicinal sourness. Then the wheat malt and grapes take over, with a smooth tartness and dryness. Some musty and chalky yeast. A fair amount of subtle apple fruitiness rounds things out. There’s a bit of coriander flavor, even though I find no evidence of that spice being used here. Pretty much zero noticeable hop flavor or bitterness. Finish is mildly phenolic, with some leather, woody, and vanilla notes. The barrel aging has imparted a touch of woodiness, which combines with the tannins in the grapes for a fairly dry finish. Crisp and clean in the mouth, with a fairly light body highlighted by a slightly prickly carbonation. Yeast pour towards the end of the bottle adds some creaminess, along with a touch of peppery spiciness.

Overall, a unique and relaxing brew that I wish I could have around in the summer.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.25/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of Holland
4.25/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.27/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge, huge thanks to callmemickey for opening a 2011 bottle of this. Served in a mini tulip.

Pours a clear light golden color with a short, fizzy white head and some spotty lacing on the way down. The nose carries plenty of white grapes and a short burst of lactic acid. There's some tropical fruit lingering in the background along with a bit of earth and oak.

The flavor falls back off a bit, losing some of the subtleties of the nose, but the grape and saison components blend quite well. There's a bit of spice in the background to go with the white grape and acidity. Light to medium body with good carbonation and a nice lactic presence through the finish. Quite dry.

Really great stuff. Big thanks again to Ryan for enabling me to finally try this one.

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Photo of gory4d
4.3/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to koko2315 for this fantastic beer.

Pours into my Liefmans cervoise glass golden and very bubbly -- almost like Champagne. There's a loose but high white head, that fades quickly to a white cap that leaves lots of lacing. The smell is dandelion, rust, straw, clover honey. The taste is very complex, hard to pin down: wood sorrel, maybe, some sweet grass, grape-skin tannins, clover, faint notes of malt. It's very fizzy, exceedingly dry -- substantial but light. This is a unique beer, quite drinkable. Not sure it's a saison, but I'll buy that it's a farmhouse ale. I'm going to have to try and get another bottle.

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Photo of CrellMoset
4.3/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle picked up at the 2011 release. Poured in to a footed pilsener glass.

Appearance: Pours a crystalline straw gold, very bright and vibrant, and absolutely transparent, showcasing a remarkably active whirlwind of carbonation which at first creeps then accelerates, racing upwards towards a persistently half inch creamy, smooth, even alabaster head. Lacing along the sides of the glass is pleasant but not noteworthy, or at least not noteworthy until it gets warmer (when it forms streaky crystalline patterns along the sides of the glass) - the real plus here is the hue and the effervescence.

Aroma: Tart and earthy tannins on the nose, but with a stronger and spicier backbone than you'd otherwise get from a wine.

Taste: Precisely as described - a saison with strong tart, vinous overtones. The underlying beer is sweet, spicy, and very authentically saison - that is, it's biscuity, with a good amount but not an overpowering amount of unattenuated sugar, a good grassy underlying springiness, and some nice clove-esque notes.

Mouthfeel: Not as spritzy as I imagine it could have been. This one had just been bottled when it was distributed at the release party, and the neck came with a sticker that told you to sit on it for quite some time. I did, of course, but the climate control in my cellar isn't what it should be, so it's probable that the carbonation on this one was a little lower than intended.

Drinkability: More like a wine than a beer in many ways, and if you like wine (and I happen to), this one really hits the spot, especially at a mere 6.5%, about half of what your typical bottle of wine packs.

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Photo of Verecund
4.34/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 bottle courtesy of phattysbox. Shared with Mrs. Verecund on Friday, (May) the 13th. I'd been looking forward to this one.

Golden straw bodied with a half finger of head. Little lacing, but decent clarity.

Wonderful, white grape forward nose (despite the use of concord grapes). Some nice tartness and acidity; vinous. Some must and vague cat pee peeking through.

Taste is a step down from the nose. There's a little more mustiness and oak and a little less of the vibrant white grape vinousness. Still, some citrus and vinous acidity is present, bready malts, slightly spicy yeast, and a bretty finish. Pleasantly different from most saisons.

Soft, medium-light body, dry finish.

A really pleasant saison/sour hybrid. Refreshing, with a light sourness and tartness, a wonderful use of grape. I found the heavy yeast notes mid-to-late palate distracting, but this was well done for the most part. Seek it out.

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Photo of stakem
4.42/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle I picked up at the '11 Southampton IRS release. Shared with Slatetank and Kegatron last evening. Bottle opens up and slightly gushes into my awaiting cervoise. It appears a lightly hazed golden orange color. A white head less than a finger strong fizzes away quickly. A swirl revives the cap with some larger than normal bubbles that quickly fade as well.

The smell of this brew is lightly yeasty in nature with an underlying sweetness that is fruity. It takes awhile before the white grape character comes forward and is more evident. There is a light cheese aspect mixed with some soft vanilla sweetness from the oak aging which mixes to a light tannic and raw wood character across the back. As the brew gets warm, it becomes more sharp and lactic with cheese and some funk mingled with a light grassy to herbal contrasting hop character.

The taste is surprisingly sour and acidic. White grape flavors and sweetness are accented by a smooth vanilla note from the barrel aging. A light sweetness of grain is also present which really blends well with the smooth vanilla notes. The sweetness and the smoothness quickly gives way to sharp almost lemony sourness which is quite enjoyable and very different when mixed with the vinous touch of this brew. As the brew gets warmer, it gets increasingly more dry to the finish with almost a creamy yogurt tangy aspect.

This is a very interesting and enjoyable saison. It is medium to light in the feel with a modest, fizzy amount of carbonation. For 6.5%, it packs a heartier punch with warmth down the back of the throat. I need more of this beer. It is not at all what I was expecting but it was a welcomed surprise. Very solid and worth checking out if you dig wild and sour brews.

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Southampton Peconic County Reserve Ale from Southampton Publick House
Beer rating: 4.48 out of 5 with 79 ratings