Saison Vautour Du Bois | McKenzie Brew House

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Saison Vautour Du BoisSaison Vautour Du Bois

Brewed by:
McKenzie Brew House
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by craytonic on 09-20-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 22 | Ratings: 69
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.36/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Cavery for sharing this one at the post Bruery Reserve Society party bottle share!

Pours a murky yellow with no head and no lace. Smell is of grain/malt and some sour fruity aromas. Taste is of grain/malt, sour fruit, and some yeast flavors. There is an acidic quality to this one after each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good saison with some nice sour/tart aromas and flavors.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to ygtbsm94 for bringing this bottle to last night's tasting. Served in a SAVOR wine glass because I forgot to pull out the McKenzie glass that yourefragile got for me. Epic glassware fail.

Pours a clear yellow-golden color with a nice bubbly white head and a good bit of lacing on the way down. The nose carries some nice peppery phenolics and spice. Also present is some light pilsner malt and a bit of stone fruit. Light acidity there as well.

The flavor is really nice and complex with some spice and earthiness combining with a nice, light stone-fruit presence and moderate acidity through the background. Light body with crisp carbonation and a moderately-acidic and very dry finish.

Another superb wild saison from McKenzie. Bravo.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.2/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by ygtbsm94. Thanks Brad.

The beer is clear and golden yellow hued with a soft white head that leaves sparse lacing on the tulip. The aroma offers a light funky presence, some yeast, grassy notes. Quite tasty! Herbal tea and a touch of fruit with some hop bitterness in the finish. Complex and delicious. Recommended.

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Photo of stakem
3.85/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I have no idea what happened to my review. I posted this a long time ago and it appears that it was removed since the "du bois" and "clean" versions have been segregated. Review from paper notes taken 12/11/10, shared at ClockworkOrange's tasting. Bottle #120/372

Poured into a snifter, this brew appears a light hazy golden yellow color. A yellowish stained head appears and sticks with a webbing of lace around the glass and top of this brew. Somewhat poor retension, a swirl revives a quickly dissolving cap.

The aroma of this brew is very lemony, lactic and brett'd. The typical classic style saison scents of barnyard funk come through more as the beer warms. It has a light sulfur quality that leans towards a strange scent that is almost plastic-like.

The taste mimics the aroma with a full throttle taste of seemingly artificial lemon, lactic acidity, Brett, funk and a moderate oily bitterness from clingy hops. The aftertaste is somewhat plastic-like. A dry tannic aftertaste comes out once this brew gets warm.

This is a light bodied brew with a lower than expected level of carbonation. Somewhat watery at times in the feel. It is however, light refreshing and easy drinking for 7% abv. There is seemingly no indications of alcohol in flavor or warmth. I'm not sure about this particular experience/bottle, it is worth trying again though.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.32/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Bartrash for sending me this one. Bottle #33 of 360. Served in a Captain Lawrence tulip.

A - Quick-dissolving foam settles to a thin ring and not much else. Lightly hazed pale straw/white peach flesh-colored body.

S - Peppery Saison yeast, light vinous character, some mild funky and lemony brett, a dab of tropical fruits, hints of oak, lotion, pale malted grains, and rye.

T - Taste is fairly similar, with a bit more stone fruit sweetness and stronger notes of lemony citrus, oak, and even a light lactic sourness. No apparent alcohol. Flavor has a bit more punch to it than the aroma.

M - Smooth medium body, moderate-to-low level of carbonation, lightly tannic, with a very dry and oaky finish. Goes down quickly and is quite refreshing.

D - A really enjoyable and high-quality Saison from the US. Crushable stuff that I would happily drink any evening, and one of the few beers where a 750ml bottle is the appropriate serving size. Perhaps a bit subtle for lovers of extreme beer, but a remarkably successful in its combination of wine barrels, wild yeast, and farmhouse ale.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.3/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Brad, a nice saison from McKenzie's not provided by yourefragile.

Beer is yellow and hazy with a soft white head of small bubbles, some lacing, nice carbonation, decent retention.

Aroma is mildly "sour", just a little funky on the end, a little tea like bitterness in there, a little fruit and yeasty esters.

Beer is light in body with a nice slightly dry finish, not too bad, a little late sourness / bitterness from tea or oak, nice fruity midpalate a decent beer with nice connectivity. I'd have it again for sure.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.23/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap at The new 3rd location which township escapes me right now. It's near paoli.

Saison Vautour Du Bois pours into the glass a bright tinted yrllow color with some faint blond highlights on the sides. Took a while to pour it, it was quite foamy off the tap. An inch of bright white sticky foam that's clingy.

Smell is bright with the original Saison Vautour, that is not lost. Nice bready Belgian yeast bright with straw melded nicely with some oaky character and strains of funky yeast. Ripe apple with lemon and some grass. I don't pick up much wine character.

Taste is what I expected, brilliant. I can only imagine what this tastes like out of a bottle. Nice mix of brett funk with lively saison character, a medley of light oak, lighter wine, some bugs, apple, and fresh bread. I need to age a bottle of this quick.

Feel is lively off of the tap. A nice slight tart character with a small linger. Body is at less than medium and the musk and aroma and taste build with warmth. Take your time with this one, although it's tough to not gulp it down.

A delightful twist on a saison with alot of character. I hope to have this again one day.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.65/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750 mL bottle. Number 4 of 360. The Vautour du Bois label has been used for about a year now, but this is the first batch that was released along with a batch labeled Vautour (Summer 2011). In my experience some of the previous batches labeled "du Bois" have just been normal Vautour and vice versa, so good luck figuring out which one you have.

Pours a crisp, clear bright golden color with a few fingers of pillowy white head. Quickly fades to a thin collar and a few streaks of lace. Strong, potent aroma of lemon, peach, and other zesty fruit. Pale malt, straw, and light wheat are in the background with a finish of brett funky and sour citrus.

Body is perfect in this batch. Medium thick with light, effervescent carbonation producing a billowy, soft texture. Juicy throughout with a pleasant, sharp sour aftertaste. Wine barrel is a little stronger and funkier in the flavor than most batches of Vautour/Vautour du Bois (which is the idea of this label). The base of clean Vautour is here, mild pepper and yeasty saison flavors, but is overwhelmed by the wine barrel and brett. Mildly sour lemon zest starts the flavor and becomes slightly sweet with tropical fruits and peach with some grass and straw. Dry, brett funk lingers through the finish. Consistently one of my favorite beers, this batch doesn't disappoint.

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Photo of weeare138
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears a hazy light gold with a small white cap that slowly fades out into a gentle cap and collar. Lots of scattered bots of lacing left around the glass.
Smell is of tart lemon, citrusy blasts of key lime, obvious oakiness, vanillins, and perhaps a touch of butter from a pedio strain. Goodness...very, very complex for a beer. This is usually only reserved for well done wines but it's nailed.
Taste is of the aromas with a tart smacking of pumelo and Meyer lemons. Oaky white wine...on second thought...maybe not a pedio butter offset but perhaps a trace of Chardonnay, which is a style that I despise due to the butter bomb qualities 9/10 times. It's hidden...I'm making a bigger thing than what is is. Rambling. Blah blah blah.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, easy drinking, tart, and dry.
Reading the description now: someone goofed - "Belgian style dubbel brewed w/ our house saison yeast.". Huhhhh?
Great beer. Good job, guys.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.54/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

**Moving my review since the listing for this beer has been cleared up**

Bottle from G311. Thank you, Vince, you seem to have hooked up half of BA with this beer. This is the most recent release, labeled Saison Vautour Du Bois, bottle #82/376.

With a slow hiss, the foam starts to rise gently in the bottle. Not fast enough to catch me unaware, but still significant. The beer itself is a mildly hazy orange with a dense, white head with excellent retention and nice lacing. The nose is most definitely awesome. A beautiful soured saison, I'm immediately struck by a blend of fruits - peaches, citrus, nectarines and melons - and a wonderful saison grassy, hay-like funk. A little bit of oak is present, mostly as a tannic note. The Brett character is wonderful here - a little bit of clove, a little bit of leather and horseblanket - and a little bit of honey as well. Exceptional.

The palate opens tart and very Bretty, with a blend of clove, horseblanket and some floral honey, the way the balance has tilted away from the fruit is rather impressive. Plenty of straw and hay are present, and there's a little bit of white pepper to complement the clove here. Grainy, there's a rather rustic, with whole wheat and a little bit of grainy bitterness. The tartness really livens things up on the palate, the blend of mild lemony sourness, and a wonderful, mildly unripe fruit salad, with peaches and melons present. Drying and tannic on the finish, the blend of clove, leather, tannins and citrus is excellent. Just a touch watery, though, and I have to dock a point for it. Light in body with a high but soft and creamy level of carbonation, this is one of the better saisons I've had of late.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 05-18-2011 03:15:01

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Photo of thagr81us
4.2/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to beeruser for sharing this one at a recent tasting! Served from bottle into a Sweetwater 15th Anniversary snifter. Poured golden with a minimal white head that subsided to none quickly. There was no lacing evident throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, bubblegum, earth, and subtle tart. The flavor was of sweet malt, earth, subtle tart, and citrus. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. I really liked the tart aspect that was going on in this one as it really added an unexpected level of depth to it. This was one of the more enjoyable brews of the evening for me as it was completely unexpected. I really wish that we had more than one bottle of this to get down on as it was really quite tasty. An absolute must try if you have not done so already, and if you have, you already know what I’m talking about.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.3/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to MasterSki, the King of Pop, for sharing this one.

A - Golden colored beer with a lighter looking white head that had some decent retention. There's a nice bit of lacing left on the glass.

S - Good citrus qualities and some light lemon. There is some moderate funk, bit of yeast and spice, some stone fruit, and a bit of pale malts.

T - Taste is nice, kind of a stronger version of the smell. More fruity and a little bit sweeter, with a little more yeast presence and some lactic sourness as well.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation and a slight drying on the end.

O - Good beer, faithful to the style and very refreshing. Would drink again and often as it goes down easily.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.19/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip. Big thanks to SteveFinny for this.

3.0 A: Lightly hazed dark yellow color. Two fingers of frothy white head. Retention is below average and no lacing is left.

4.0 S: Wow, this is really complex. Earthy and herbal. Funky and fruity. Dry grassiness to start things off. Musty basement and apple orchard funk. Peach, apple, lemon, melon, and pear fruitiness. Light peppery yeastiness. Straw and the slightest tartness (mainly lemony).

4.5 T: The herbalness and funk are what I immediately notice. An almost yerba mate-like herb to it. Funk keeps with what the nose offers, giving you woodzy and musty funk. Tart lemon and dare I say lime too. Actually, it's probably more lime forward than lemon. Also lots of melon and pear with apple and apricot a few steps behind. Grassy with hay. White grape vinousness. Slight peppery spiciness. The brett seems to do wonderful things here. This is as complex as anything you'd find coming out of any country in the world.

3.5 M: Medium body. Carbonation is on the lower side and isn't as spritzy as I'd like. Still, it's super smooth and goes down very easy.

4.5 D: Hell of a beer. I had never heard of these guys before despite being out of Pittsburgh. I'll definitely be looking for more. Hell, this might be as good as Ann.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.17/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 32 of 372. Received this in a BIF nearly 2 years ago and am finally cracking it open. Thanks!! Really excited for this one as I love wild saisons!

A- Body is a dynamically very thick and cloudy pale golden yellow hue. Pours with a very fizzy 1-2 finger white head that fades to an eggshell while collar and some swirling along the top of the body. Very little lacing left behind in the glass.

S- The nose is very sweet, bready, funky, and complex. Lots of bready yeast , lemon, and sugar up front with huge brett (funky, slightly sour) overtones and also a hint of floral hop overtones.

T- The flavor is not nearly complex as the nose. At 2 years this beer is becoming a brett bomb. Brett funk all over the place with a hint of sourness aand a backbone of barnyard funk, breadiness, lemon, and yeast with a slight acidicness to it. What is left to linger is a lot of funk and some breadiness and just a mild hint of lemon peel and sour.

M- Medium carbonation and a smooth, bready yeasty body that is somewhat lightweight. It does have some acidic notes but is mostly bready. Awesome overall for the style.

O- Very good beer overall and something that I enjoy. I don't know what this was like fresh but it is now very much a Brett bomb-which I like- it embraces the funk ion a funky saison. It would be nice if the flavor was as complex as the nose. Overall I really enjoyed this one and am looking forward to other McKenzie brews!

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Photo of Sean9689
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks, Alex! Good Beer/Bad Beer tasting. Poured into Bell's tulip.

A - Pours a light golden yellow color, thin collar, wisps.

S - A mix of brett & light tartness, lemon peel, light citrus, very light citrus. All very subtle and light, but the combination is really excellent. Not your average saison here, something more...better.

T - Taste goes right along with the nose. Citrus, light brett funk, some tartness up front, and some lemon peel on the finish. The tartness hits before the brett does, which works well in showcasing all that's going on here. Finish is a light citrus creamy sweetness.

M - Light body, light carbonation, refreshing & crisp.

O - Really impressive stuff from McKenzie. This was one of my favorites at the tasting, and I would love to have another bottle to see where the brett & tartness goes from here. Recommend.

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Photo of harrymel
4.41/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Label: McKenzie (yellow/golden label background) Saison Vautour (du bois)
ABV 7%
Bottle 90/372
Wax: Gold

Received this beer quite some time ago, and am only now cracking it. Upon pulling the crown, only a small audible pfft, then a few seconds later a steady foam rolled from the neck. Oddly, as I poured the beer, only a few seconds later, there was only a small sheet of white over the diaphanous, toasted straw ale. Nose fulls of straw, soil, funk, wisps of grass and a little must. Flavor has the slightest lactic tartness to it, a good hop bitterness and plenty of dry, crisp barnyard funkiness. This is a step above most saisons and I wish Pixieskid was here to enjoy - this is right up his alley I believe (sorry brandon, was gonna open while you were here, just didn't get to it). Medium on heavy body with light carbonation and a dry finish. The dryness of the finish is balanced with a subsequent watering stemming from the acidity.

Really a great beer, and if I could, I would buy this regularly. Truly one of the best saisons I've come across.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
4.57/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to my buddy G311 for the hook-up. This is a good one. Saison Vautour Du Bois, bottle 43?/372.

A - It pours a bright lemon-yellow hue with a wispy film of white froth atop. Lacing ensues despite the relatively small head.

S - The nose immediately is greeted with zesty lemon and various sweet orchard fruits such as pear, peach and white grape. There are also small amounts of pineapple-y brett funk and some sweaty-musty farmhouse notes as well as a bit of herbal grassy hoppiness.

T - The flavor follows the aroma but offers additional notes of white pepper, hay, wildflower and citrus blossom. The funky lemon pepper nuances juxtaposed against the pristine pale malt is a dynamic that works fabulously. Sweet fruity pear-ish notes pop up on the finish. Delicious.

M - The feel is light, refreshing and velvety; quite enhancing.

O - I am greatly impressed by this one; it is tremendously crushable, complex, and all-around well-done. I really want more.

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Photo of brystmar
4.09/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Ethan!

Pours like white wine, no head or lace. Tons of Chardonnay grapes in the nose; permeates nicely to the taste too. Yeast character is minimized to emphasize the wine barrel flavors. Haven't had a saison that tastes like this before, but I really like it. With others would follow suit.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to DaveHack for giving me the opportunity to try this! Pours a fizzy sounding, hazy, golden-straw color with a small white head which immediately turns still. Very still to be exact. Scent is AMAZING! I was expecting good, but not this good. Has a tart, funky aroma to it that I love in my saisons. Reminds me of something from Fantome. Very funky with nice barnyard, lemon, and a bit of butter. Taste is amazing as well! Immediately tart with some lovely lemon and orange zest...then a bit of bitter hoppiness, immediately followed by funky Belgian yeast flavors. Some nice, buttery notes as well. Mouthfeel is quite first it seems like the carbonation is off...but then you get some nice fizzy carbonation. Drinkability is very high. Overall, this is a fantastic saison. I have had many Fantome beers and many American saisons and have yet to find an American saison that comes close to the classic Fantome style...until now. Well done beer from a brewery I have never even heard of.

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Photo of Etan
4.22/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml shared by Todd (immobilisme) at Zwanze 2012 in Chicago. Thanks!

A: Yellow body with a decent white head.

S: The nose brings brett (pineapple, hay, slightly gamey), honey, wood, more pineapple.

T. The taste is mellower than the nose, but a bit more complex. Pleasant juicy tartness, tannic, honey, a bit herbal, pale candi sugar and some cakey esters, and plenty of fruity brett underneath.

M. Light-bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: This was quite good.

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Photo of russwbeck
3.85/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle #84/372. Thank you KristinCooks from the TG it's the end of finals week BIF!

A: Hazy golden yellow pour with a very small, but creamy, white head. Doesn't stick around too long, but has some lacing.

S: The smell on this is funky! Grassy, earthy, lemony, really different.

T: Aged in win barrels, eh? That must be what that taste is. Very light to start out. Lemons and other earthy tones, but that gives way to the wine and oak. Really interesting taste that I didn't like on my first sip, but is definitely growing on me.

MF: Light and bubbly.

D: As per the style, the drinkability is nice. The wine/oak tastes make it more interesting, but not less drinkable.

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Photo of craytonic
4.4/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Bottle is a slow gusher. Golden-orange pour with a touch of amber and yellow. Smallish head, no real lacing

Smell: Very wheaty, touches of white pepper and spices like coriander. It smells pleasant but not particularly strong.

Taste: Wow, now we are cooking. Tastes like sunshine in a bottle. All of the typical saison-style flavors with a big squeeze of lemon and a nice tartness. Bits of hay and earth, perhaps some lemongrass. I was somewhat taken aback by how good it is.

Mouthfeel: Just incredibly soft, almost like a pillow. Perfect carbonation.

Overall: I really enjoyed this bottle. Big surprise, glad I get to add it to the database. The mouthfeel is probably one of the best I have felt for a saison. Taste is up there also, there is this slight tartness that is very enjoyable. A little work on the nose and this will be the best american saison on the market, if it isn't already. Please make more.

Bottle #8 of 360.

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Saison Vautour Du Bois from McKenzie Brew House
4.33 out of 5 based on 69 ratings.
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