Existent | Stillwater Artisanal Ales

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Very Good
646 Ratings

Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Maryland, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Existent represents the philosophy behind Stillwater Artisanal. We strive to define ourselves through our passion and sincerity while accepting that not all aspects of life are readily explainable. To manifest this ideology we present an ale of intrigue. Deep & dark though deceptively dry, braced by a firm yet smooth bitterness and accented with an earthy hop and mild roast aroma. This is an ale for you to define...
’and if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.’ –Nietzsche

Added by Thorpe429 on 11-13-2010

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 646 |  Reviews: 177
Photo of Invinciblejets
1.89/5  rDev -50%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

Photo of tbone64
2/5  rDev -47.1%

Photo of MonkeyBread
2/5  rDev -47.1%

Photo of mwar
2/5  rDev -47.1%

Photo of adam5454
2/5  rDev -47.1%

Photo of GrindFatherBob
2/5  rDev -47.1%

Photo of tfsimpkins
2.14/5  rDev -43.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Photo of Stingraystripe
2.27/5  rDev -39.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Very bready nose and I also smell some dried fruit. Poured with A thick foamy head and quite dark - an opaque chocolate color - unlike any farmhouse ale I've seen. Taste is raisiny and malty. Drinks like a barley wine - to the point I kept checking the label. I don't think this one is true to style at all. There's a slight sour at the end that hints of farmhouse but that's it. Stillwater greatly impressed me with their stateside saison and I assumed this was on par. It's a decent beer, but nothing like a farmhouse in my opinion.

 540 characters

Photo of Lawl3ss
2.3/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Chilled 12 oz bottle into a 33 cl snifter. Bottling date 4.25.13.

Look- Deep brown, quite clear but you can't see through the glass. Pours with two fingers of soapy foam that falls quickly, minimal lacing.

Smell- Mild, toasty aroma. Lightly floral, some wet hay. Swirling brings out stone fruit and something vegetal.

Taste- Nutty, dry, light peppery spice and baker's chocolate. Meaty, buttery flavor in the finish- farmhouse, yeah, but this much DMS and diacetyl makes me think this is just off.

Mouthfeel- Medium-full body, mild prickly carbonation on the sip. Dry-ish finish, but coating, milky feel left afterwards.

Overall- Some farmhouse experiments are worthwhile, but this just seems like a really crappy brown ale. Maybe This is generally a good beer, but the brewers need to keep their culture in check. Didn't finish it.

 837 characters

Photo of david18
2.5/5  rDev -33.9%

Photo of bradfordjohnson
2.5/5  rDev -33.9%

Photo of ToddBeans
2.5/5  rDev -33.9%

Photo of silverking
2.51/5  rDev -33.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

A- looks like a stout... Pitch black with cola colored highlights. Creamy khaki head with excellent retention and fantastic lacing. It's just too dark.

S- deep and toasty with some citrus highlights. This is not a farmhouse ale in my opinion. If you blindfolded me and had me smell this one, I'd guess it was a stout or porter.

T- cocoa and coffee. The finish is nutty and earthy.

M- medium bodied with low carbonation.

O- It is NOT a saison. I understand that styles are open to interpretation, but this has gone too far. It is delicious, however, just don't expect a saison when you purchase it.

 615 characters

Photo of iTunesUpdates
2.6/5  rDev -31.2%

Photo of MPPHISH
2.75/5  rDev -27.2%

Photo of Zbeetleman
2.75/5  rDev -27.2%

Photo of jrbuch
2.86/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served in Brewer's Art Goblet.

A: Approx 25 SRM. Extremely dark for the style with almost no head. Surprising for an American Farmhouse Ale.

S: For a AFA, I would have expected a lot more. The smell is faint but sweet, roasty and some pear. A mild hop presence. Minimal esters

T: Roasted and chocolate. Some hop. More like a porter

M: This beer doesn't have enough body or carbonation.

D: Overall a fine beer. Not an American Farmhouse Ale. More esters, less harsh malts but equally dark, stronger carbonation with a heavier mouthfeel could help here.

 557 characters

Photo of VelvetExtract
2.87/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A-Pours an intriguing color. It's dark brown. The body does seem to be mostly clear despite the hue. Almost no head is found in my glass.

S-Aroma reminds me of a Porter with Saison yeast. A bit of roast and cocoa. Some Belgian spice. Also some light, earthy hoppiness.

T-The flavor isn't very good. I don't like this weird, Saison-Porter hybrid. Most of what I found in the aroma was apparent in the flavor. There was also a slight nuttiness in the flavor. The dark flavors don't mesh well with the Saison aspects.

M-Medium bodied. A bit chalky. Bubbly. I powered through it so I could go to my next selection at the bar.

O/D-Was not a big fan of this. I would not drink this again.

 687 characters

Photo of mothman
2.87/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a massive layer of foamy head. Good retention with little lace left. Color is a deep brown, near black.

Aroma: For how dark this is, it still smells like a saison, just a bit roasty. Barnyard funk, lemon zest, spices, and a dry roast.

Taste: Orange peel and dry roasted malts, yeast, cloves, lemons, chocolate, some spice, and farmhouse notes. Interesting.

Mouthfeel: Roasted, smooth, and fizzy. Medium bodied with a higher amount of carbonation. Ends really dry.

Overall, a really interesting take on a saion. Not a big fan of it as it is too roasted for the style.

 576 characters

Photo of clickpush
2.89/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into pint glass. Flat looking body with large foamy bubbles that reduce to tiny halo. Smell is piny with hints of roasty funk. Very hoppy smell. Taste is similar with lingering viscous, roasty farmhouse. Still hoppy without being bitter. Mouthfeel is flat and lacklustre. Chewy finish.

 292 characters

Photo of heygeebee
2.9/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

From Sydney Wine merchants. Bottled 4/13. Fridged.

A- brown red body, one finger head. Modest sheet lace

S - English malts, toffee, liquorice(!)

T - same as smell, real mis mash and where is the earthy yeast a la Saison. No funk, no barnyard, add toffee , caramel, burnt BBQ, vanilla. And liquorice...

M - moderate carb, medium weight.

O - oh dear, what happened, an English Ale as a saison? And missing the flavour for the ABV. Burnt flavours come thru as it warms.... Pass.

 481 characters

Photo of Docer
2.96/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: (4.0)
- Poured a beautiful dark murky brown with a fizzy, planet-like crater-filled valley of light mocha head. It took a short time for it to settle down to a bubbling dark brew, that seems like it is alive and ready to go.

Smell: (3.0)
- I can't help but notice a slight homebrewy odor of aceto, or green apple-like cider notes.. but it isn't heavy enough to kill the beer. Esters, roasted chocolate, grain, prune, fig, and spice.. slight clove touch. Almost a touch of purple grape juice.

Taste: (3.0)
- Certainly one of a kind. Roasted chocolate.. tart esters, grape, dark tea leaf, fig, tobacco.. smooth dry malt character leaves an earthy flavor. Perhaps a light early grassy hop addition.

Mouth Feel: (3.0)
- Leaves the palate a bit dry, and chalky. Overall a medium bodied beer that is rather well carbonated. Slightly chewy.

Overall: (2.5)
- The beer isn't bad. It certainly didn't hit the spot as I was expecting from the fancy packaging and marketing even all the way over here in the northwest. It's much like a very good homebrew, but a farmhouse ale that falls short compared to the pros. The highlight was certainly the look of the beer.. but the rest fell short. Not worth the money.

 1,219 characters

Photo of mdfb79
2.96/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From 01/14/11 notes. Had on tap at Rattle N Hum in NYC.

a - Pours a black color with one inch of tan head and moderate carbonation..

s - Smells of roasted malts, smokey, floral notes, and

t - Tastes of smokey roasted and toasted malts, light floral notes, and something weird I can't quite place, like burnt caramel or toffee. Not that great.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

d - This was listed as a Black Saison, and I wasn't a big fan of it. The taste just seemed a little off to me and the smell was average. Wouldn't look to have again.

 550 characters

Photo of klink40
3/5  rDev -20.6%

Photo of ejimhof
3/5  rDev -20.6%

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Existent from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 646 ratings