Preservation Series: Saison Tonnellerie | The Bruery

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Preservation Series: Saison TonnelleriePreservation Series: Saison Tonnellerie

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Saison Tonnellerie is a new addition to our portfolio of Belgian-inspired saison ales and it could be argued that it is the most traditional as it was 100% fermented in oak barrels.

This sophisticated beer has picked up a rustic character akin to the original beers of the Belgian countryside that would be brewed in the colder months of the year, when fermentation temperatures were more forgiving, and served to the farm staff to keep their thirst quenched all summer long. With Spring upon us, you are just in time to stock up on this new ale for the warmer months.

Added by UCLABrewN84 on 04-23-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 40 | Ratings: 264
Photo of vfgccp
4.82/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

3 year old bottle

A - Deep orange gold body with a light haze. Thick, bright white head pours two fingers high.

S - A perfect nose. Perfectly balanced, funky hay brett with soft apricot, tart nectarine, and silky oak.

T - A mirror of the nose. Outstanding balance and integration. Apricot, oak, nectarine, a soft barn door note, dry moss, and a touch of fresh almond flour.

M - Nice carbonation on a medium frame.

O - My idea of an ideal saison. Oaky, fruity, and rustic. Well balanced, bright, and complex.

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Photo of dar482
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The aroma hits of green apple, sweet biscuity malts, oak.

The flavor follows with those sweet biscuity malts, but surrounded by pineapple and lemon fruitiness. Then onto phenolic notes, and leaning towards a golden strong ale. The decent carbonation. The beer somewhat drinks higher than its ABV.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.77/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750ml into tulip. Bottled 3/19/2013.

A: Pours a clear deep golden with a large, thick, and fluffy off-white head that slowly faded into a thick and bubbly film.
S: Huge notes of golden fruits and spice mixed with musty oak barrel. I get sweet scents of golden apple juice, a ton of yeast, mild bubblegum, and a touch of lemon. Yeast and oak are musty and earthy.
T: Dry, crisp and mildly sweet flavors of sweet apple juice, crisp wheat, spicy yeast, musty oak, bubblegum, peppery spice, and a slight mineral quality in the aftertaste. Honey like sweetness in the finish, lingering spiciness in the aftertaste.
M: Medium-full body, bubbly and tingly carbonation, semi-heavy mouthfeel, sweet and sticky.
O: On the sweeter side but nice complex spice and fruity flavor. Drank well but there are better.

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Photo of brianmandell
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 3/20/13.

Smells of earth, cheese, dung and stone fruits. Tastes slightly tart, earthy, musty, developed brett presence with a hint of oak. Some hints of citrus and stone fruit. Slightly watery, dry finish. Excellent mouthfeel with sparkling active carbonation. Quite nice although the brett is a little too much for my preference, especially in the nose. I think I would have preferred this with less age on it.

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Photo of SHODriver
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

A: poured into a duvel tulip to a clear and brilliant yellow with a three finger dense white head that retains well
S: smells of musty barnyard, oak, funk and a little bit of sourness. I'm excited...
T: taste is a little fruity up front but is followed by barnyard, a little oak, funk and some light lemony tartness. faint dry pale malt flavor as well. swallow is funky and oaky with a medicinal finish like cough spray and band aids.
M: Fairly light on the palate with soft but adequate carbonation and a dry finish
O: This is better than Fantome in my mind. A great beer and I wish I had more or that it would make a reappearance. Probably one of the best American Saisons that made it to bottles.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Umberto tonight.

Pours like a big glass of orange juice, honestly- opaque orange, with a small head and no lacing.

Smells quite sweet and strongly orange forward, with some spicing and Belgian yeast.

This tastes relatively the same, but there's something missing that I just can't put my finger on. It's very one note. The taste didn't change from the front end to the back end, and didn't change as it warmed up, which was definitely weird. Just big citrusy orange, and not much else. Some sips do have a bit of herbal bitterness.

This is medium bodied, with a slightly syrupy mouthfeel, and a lower amount of carbonation.

This was perplexing, it tasted alright, but didn't seem to be actually executed all that well.

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Photo of 01001111
4.63/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Straw with a very vigorous head. Champagne-like.

S: Belgian yeast esters, oak, a touch of pineapple and banana.

T: Oak, banana, hay, cloves.

M: Crisp, dry, aggressive carbonation.

O: A great saison. The Bruery is one of my favorite breweries but I've been disappointed with all of their saisons so far. This was quite the departure. Perhaps I'll try giving their other saisons more time to develop in the bottle.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.34/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is up there in terms of American saisons. You get the oak on the finish of this beer as well. Bright and well carbonated. A little bit of Brett funk and loads of yeast character. This is quite a treat of a Saison and up there with Saison Brett and Seizoen Bretta.

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Photo of magictacosinus
4.24/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Finally got to crack this one open recently - thanks to my fellow Society member for splitting! Bottled on "3/19/13." Poured into a pint glass from a 750ml bottle.

Pours a cloudy, golden amber color of a saison, with a good frothy white head that sticks around for a good long while. The Bruery usually is not good in providing very pretty looking beers, but saisons in general (really, thanks to the yeast) tend to be at the top in terms of presentation, and this is no exception. Great bubbles hang at the top, with some sparking wine-like carbonation at first. A great looking beer for its type, and I can't fault it for anything major.

As others pointed out that got to try this, this has developed into a very cider-like profile, as evident on the nose. Beautiful, refreshing notes of green apples, banana, apricots, and pineapple. Really good stuff, and quite balanced overall, with a grassy profile from the hops, as well as a toffee/caramel combo from the malts. It isn't very complex, but the oak aging and yeastiness becomes more apparent as this warms up - spicy, funky, yet filled with light baking spices from the oak, as well as a woody, firm finish. Very appealing overall, if only lacking complex development that I would have hoped for this late in the game.

Tastes as I would expect it to be, based on the aroma - crisp, refreshing, slightly complex, and overall satisfying. Notes of apples, pears, and banana phenolic yeastiness finish it off, alongside a grassy, slightly herbal and floral hop profile (everything from light pine to lavender is here), as well as a toffee sweetened and bready finish with some slight oak woody notes and baking spices (baking soda, caramel, and light tobacco come to mind). The star of the show is by far the yeast, which provides an undeniable funkiness and spicy flavor that enhances the fruit notes and grassy characteristics, and it seems evident from the initial flavor that this is developing well. Thick, creamy, and well carbonated, yet not heavy at all in feel, which is what I usually prefer in a saison. Not bad at all - it seems this has really reached a sweet spot at this point.

With that said, this could only get better over time, despite the yeast reaching a fully blossomed character at this point. Refreshing, flavorful, and very easy to drink, as it should be. This is probably the most laid back beer The Bruery has brewed to date, and I do hope they make this a year round offering. Very recommended for those looking for an easy going American made saison of sorts.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

as dynamic as any straight saison around. this is a beautiful beer, with a glazed yellow color, pale and well carbonated under an inch of white fluffy head with great retention. it smells like awesome belgian saison yeast, light wheat malt, and a bit of an apple vibe, maybe green apples, tart and crisp. the flavors are similar, and i still get that apple in here, but i also get a ton of new oak barrel that has made this particularly earthen and mellow, rich and nuanced, bold but delicate at the same time. it is extremely well done. the yeast is really prominent in the flavor, its spicy and tart, almost like a wild ale here but its got a fruity component too. its cleaned up all sugar and produced and extremely dry saison with great carbonation, exactly how i like mine. lots of wood and fruit in the finish without being sweet. yeast finishes the job completely. yet another beautiful beer from the bruery, who cannot seem to miss on these saison types. this is killer.

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Photo of stakem
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a bruery snifter. The brew appears a light golden copper color with a white frothy head that holds in patches of lace on the glass. A swirl effortlessly revives the cap.

The aroma includes a pleasant yeasty spice with some fruit like pear/apple and clove. It is earthen with a touch of oak and vanilla before some citrus zest comes into play breaking things up.

The taste is spicy yeast; clove initially before blending to apple and pear skins. Some wood and minor vanilla essence. Some citrus fruit/zest before getting earthen with yeasty notes and a bit of cracked pepper.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. A decent balanced and complex brew thats spicy, dry and easy drinking. It carries with it a familiarity regarding the spice profile: it is very similar to some of the other Bruery saisons. But where this one stands out is the vanilla character seemingly extracted from the barrels it was fermented in. Very nice stuff, worth checking out.

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Photo of spicelab
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL Bottle shared at tasting and reviewed from notes.

Properly turbid apricot with a light and airy respectably sized white head that collapses with a nice spider-web lace pattern.

Fairly pungent orange/lemon, apricot and kumquat, jazzed up by strong and liveley peppery herbal notes over a canvas of broad oaky dullness.

Similar to the nose, but the oak caresses the flavours a little more, smoothing the edges quite noticeably. Pleasant as it is, it becomes something of a one-note of oaked lemon-sherbet.

Light to medium with lively carbonation on the front end, quickly softened by the oak, which also reins in the tartness.

Solid as heck with zero rough edges.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thank you, Abraham. An oak-aged saison? Sign me up!

A clear brilliant gold with a dense, white head that last a while, leaving nice lacing, this looks like a great saison! The nose is great as well. More in the school of sweeter, spicier, more phenolic saisons than the bone-dry, hoppy, funky ones, the nose opens with a blend of orange blossom honey, vanilla and oak, some clove and a moderate stone fruit character. Some dough is present as well, along with green apples and pear.

The palate opens juicy, fruity, mildly lemony even, with a blend of peach, pear and apples. Honey, a little bit of sugar and a moderate spice character are present on the mid palate - I get clove, white pepper and a little bit of mace. There's a touch of fusel here, which is surprising, lending a roughness. The oak character is strong and is especially prominent on the back end. Lightly toasted oak with plenty of wood, a moderate dose of vanilla, and some tannins that dry out the finish are present. Also present on the finish are flavors of honey, succulent peach and a little sugar. Medium light in body and moderately carbonated, this is quite an enjoyable saison. Very nice.

Going back for my third pour, I rouse the yeast, making this a rather muddy, yeasty saison, moderately phenolic and rather chewy. I think i preferred my earlier pours, which is what my scores are for.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Hazy orange body. Nice white head that lasts quite a while.

Smell - Belgiany aromas. Yeasty. Some oak. Fruity esters.

Taste - Sweet malts. Esters. Extremely oaky. Bitter in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Heavy for my tastes. Well carbonated. Bitter and oaky

Overall - The oak becomes harsh as it warms. Less pleasant after a while.

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

The beer is hazy and orange to copper colored, sporting a thick head. The aroma brings yeast, citrus, pepper, earthy character, mineral water, pear. The flavor is decent. Earthy with light notes of fruit. Light to medium bodied with some zesty carbonation. Overall, this was ok.

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Photo of cvm4
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy/cloudy with a dull orange body. Two finger eggshell head.

S - Juicy pear, sweet citrus, slightly floral and funky Belgian yeast.

T - White pepper, lemon notes and pear. Not a lot of funk, but the Belgian yeast is noticeable. A little hay on the backend.

M - Medium bodied and carbonation. Has a dry finish.

O - It's great to me right now, probably be better with some age on it so the flavors can all meld together.

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Photo of FondueVoodoo
3.94/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Big thanks to tdadiuk for sending us this beer in another great trade.

A: Pours a slightly hazy pale straw with 3-4 fingers of white billowy head which leaves plenty of lacing clinging to the sides of the glass.

S: Bright lemon scents together with funky yeast followed by ripe pears. Hints of spiciness and herbal notes.

T: Spicy and funky yeast with background notes of ripe pears, lemon and wheat. Finishes dry and crisp.

M: Clean, dry and crisp with high carbonation.

O: Very clean and refreshing with a balanced amount to of funkiness. Glad I was able to try and would definitely reach for again.

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Photo of alaimoa
3.11/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a teku at the the recommended 50 degree temp. Nice cloudy gold with fluffy white head and with faint barreled citrus notes and a hint of farmhouse funk. Comes across on smell and taste as fairly mellow lacking a bit of depth. Overall I wouldn't buy it again but it was a smooth drinker with okay characteristics

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.29/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Very large frothy head with excellent retention on a murky dull gold with light orange hue.

S: aroma is excellent with lemon and tangerine sweet citrus, herbal notes, funky yeast

T: fairly tart but seems washed out and not very sweet, with spicy notes, clove, vanilla, belgian yeast funk and pepper. The flavor drops off sharpley though in the finish.

M: medium to oily body with moderate to high carbonation and fairly dry finish.

Overall: very nice saison, its a little watered down in the flavor which isnt reflected in the body however.

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Photo of nickfl
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours with a big, head of sticky white foam on top of a hazy, dark golden body. An aroma of vanilla, pepper, tropical fruit, and spicy hops. Thick malt an start wheat up front with notes of pepper and pineapple. Finishes with clove, vanilla, and more pineapple notes. Medium thick body, modately high carbonation, and a balanced finish. Very nice, complex and drinkable.

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Photo of pkalix
4.04/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

nice golden color, minimal head. mine is clear; I saw someone else mentioned theirs was 'hazy'.
smells of grass and vinegar and hay. some floral aroma as well.
taste has a strong vinegar presence (for this type and what I was expecting); not a sour kind of vinegar, but a bitter kind of vinegar and not related to hops. light taste, kind of airy. some yeast and typical Belgian flavors. some sweetness.
overall a decent brew. a little rich.

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Photo of flayedandskinned
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottled on 3/19/13
Poured into a standard tulip glass.

Appearance: (4)
Pours a beautiful, hazy straw gold with a luscious cap of a 2 fingers tall, tightly bubbled, pure white head. The head retention is adequate, but I've seen better on Saisons. As the head recedes, it leaves some minor lacing along the sides of the glass.

Aroma: (4.5)
Spicy Saison yeast envelopes your senses as you bring the glass towards your face; notes of ripe, juicy pear, white pepper and clove. There is a bright, lemon-y tartness to the nose, which really syncs up with the grassy hop character that is underneath the yeast. Behind the tartness, there is a subtle, earthy funkiness and soft, cracker like malt presence that both become more apparent as the beer warms. Whispers of vanilla are preciously intertwined inside the malt character, which I assume is due to fact that this Saison was 100% fermented in oak.

Taste: (3.75)
Similar to the nose; Spicy saison yeast upfront; fresh hay interlaced with notes of pear, banana, clove and white pepper. A bright burst of orange blossom hoppiness follows the the yeast into the musty, Brettanomyces laden middle. The beer finishes bitter, dry and ever-so-slightly-tart, with a kiss of a cracker-like malt presence. The oak lends a creaminess to the malt character. Lingering notes of vanilla, barnyard funk, pepper and bread. Light tannin presence.

Mouthfeel: (3.75)
Robust, Medium, creamy body from oak with high carbonation.

Overall: (3.75)
To reign this very widely interpreted style back into it's rustic beginnings, the Bruery decided to 100% ferment this Saison in oak barrels. This process adds a very distinct, vanilla heavy woodsiness to the beer. The oak also lends a lightly creamy body to the ale. This saison smells absolutely wonderful with a lovely tart streak. Unfortunately, the taste isn't quite as layered and nuanced as the nose. Overall this is a fun beer, but I definitely would take Saison Rue over this any day of the week.

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Photo of MighHighBrewer
4.19/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a tulip on 7/21/13. No date on the bottle (that I can tell).

A: An excellent looking Saison. The beer pours like a prototypical Saison: a golden yellow color with an orange hue that just screams Belgian. The beer is cloudy but has no visible sediment. A one-inch, pillowy thick head is apparent upon pouring that dies down a bit after a minute or so. Excellent lacing. Overall, they nailed the appearance.

S: A citrus-forward nose invites you to investigate further. Citrus fruit is prominent on the front -end: lemons, oranges, etc. Also present is the Belgian yeast/barnyard funk smell, but it's not overwhelming. Minor floral and oak notes round out the nose. I didnt get much peppery spice exhibited by some Saisons.

T & M: Pepper notes are much more prominent in the taste than on the nose. Lemon, green apple, and honey flavors dominate. A little bit of barnyard funk - not much. I also get alot of hop bitterness. Given the nose, I expected the beer to be more fruit-forward than it is; instead, this is a rather bitter and spicy Saison. The beer is extra dry as expected. Carbonation is appropriate for the style.

O: This is in the upper echelon of Saisons, but not quite as good as some of the best ones on the market. The appearance and nose are excellent, but the taste lacks some of the complexity found in some of the other great Saisons on the market. To improve: I'd dial down the IBU's and try to accentuate the yeast character more.

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Photo of dannydetox
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Seems like the way saison beers would taste from the old country years ago. Poured a bit hazy, with a medium head that dissipated. Notably yeasty nose with elements of citrus. Across the palate, a pleasant mouthfeel that coats the tongue. I get tangy qualities and a discernible sour taste on the finish. Vinous is the first word that comes to mind. Refreshingly bright, but not as complex as some in this category. The sour qualities, while not overpowering, do linger. Fine summer sippin, though.

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Photo of notchucknorris
4.53/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a glowing light golden color with just a hint of haze. A nice, fluffy two finger white head leaves some nice lace after every sip.

S: Very subtle smell, but very true to what I think of when I think of what a saison should smell like. Rustic and a bit peppery with some grassy notes and hints of oak, ginger and unripe stonefruit.

T: Light and just a touch sour. Grass, white pepper, lemon zest, light grapefruit and some oak and light unripe pear. Mouthfeel is near perfect, prickling with carbonation without ever taking too much away from the flavor. A really nice saison.

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Preservation Series: Saison Tonnellerie from The Bruery
4.04 out of 5 based on 264 ratings.
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