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A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2) | Stillwater Artisanal Ales

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A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2)A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2)
BA SCORE
3.89/5
Very Good
347 Ratings
A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2)A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Maryland, United States
stillwater-artisanal.com

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed at Huisbrouwerij Sint Canarus in Deinze-Gottem, Belgium with Dr. Canarus. This black saison carries qualities similar to a stout with light roast and burnt sugar flavors, spiced with Rose Hips, Hibiscus, & Schisandra berries.

Added by Thorpe429 on 11-13-2010

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#8,252
Reviews:
134
Ratings:
347
pDev:
11.57%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
23
Gots:
39
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 347 |  Reviews: 134
Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark murky body, with initial abundant foamy head that dissipitates. Chocolate aroma, above all else. Lactose, creamy milk chocolate taste, with some sourness in the finish. Some spices in the secondary, chipolte-like, that remain on the lips.Above-average mouthfeel, and then its gone, great dinkability.

 313 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: two finger head with excellent retention on a very deep brown amber body.

S: very nice full nose with belgian yeast, corriander, herbal hops, and peppercorn.

T: raisin, chocolate, belgian yeast, herbal hops, peppercorn, spices, and roasted malts

M: medium body and fairly high carbonation. semi dry, a little over carbonated even for the style

Overall: this is a very good dark saison. balances the saison belgian character with roasted/chocolate malt notes.

 465 characters

Photo of Texasfan549
3.59/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jaydoc
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of GRG1313
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.86/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

very cool beer, i havent had anything new from stillwater in awhile, so this is fun. on tap at world of beer downtown. it has some interesting ingredients, and they are really on display here. the hibiscus and rose hips give a bright floral but not perfumy complexion to a beer that seems to have the grain bill of a stout, or at least a heavy brown. very roasty with coffee notes too, so its uncommon to see such blooming summery things as these in a beer like this. the saison part is lost on me a little though, i am so focused on the interaction of the additives with the dark grains, that all of my attention is zapped, and whatever strain of yeast is in this beer fails to make an impression on me. that doesnt bother me though, i like it as a black ale, or even as a brown ale, its fun, totally different, and in line with the other stillwater beers out there. a belgian kick to the finish, some mild bitterness, and the hibiscus lasting through it all. clever beer to say the least, not perfect, not my favorite from them, but one to certainly admire and take in, as there isnt much else like it happening out there right now.

 1,134 characters

Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of kjkinsey
3.84/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Knapp85
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a nice deep brown color. Plenty of head on this brew. It's creamy looking and tan in color. The lacing I found to be pretty attractive. The smell of the beer had elements of a normal Saison as long with some dark wheat beer elements too. Some aromas of clove, grains and soft fruits. The taste of this beer was pretty good, lots of earthy flavors and spice throughout the beer. The mouthfeel was very smooth and had a decent thickness to it. Overall I enjoyed this a lot, I found this dark Saison to be much better than the Tom Foolery from Terrapin.

 574 characters

Photo of nmann08
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of metter98
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is very dark brown (near black) in color and poured with a finger high off white head that quickly faded away and left a ringer of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of dark fruits and spices in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and also has some flavors of chocolate malts.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate with a moderate to high amount of carbonation.
D: The beer is relatively easy to drink considering its strength because the alcohol is well masked from the taste.

 548 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.78/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Resisting what the contemporary style makers try to prescribe about "farmhouse ale," Baltimore's Stillwater saison makers are tempting those modern notions with rustic, artistic and rudimentary tastes that show that these ales are so much more than a style- they are a culture.

A Saison Darkly pours with a dark rust color, equipped with a hazy amber to suggest depth and darkness. Yet not brown or black, its color even challenges what saison should be. And all that manifests in a toasty, peppery and dry grain aroma which is further backed by the dark fruit and hard candy sweetness that follow.

Flowing over the middle, its expressive carbonation bounces off the tongue carrying with it the taste of kettle-caramelized toffee and maple. With its bready wheat and malt underpinnings, a notion of french-toast with pepper and light char are easily understood. Heading toward finish, a tinge of grilled blackberry, red grape and black cherry suggest a winy tone.

Its dry and toasty finish does inherit a thin candied sweetness to balance its vinously tart alcohol tone. While pepper and char dance about its periphery, even they aid in the beer's overall drainable dryness. A quick finish that's indicative of wine trials with grilled plum and berry with recurring flare.

 1,275 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375ml bottle. Spiced with rose hips, hibiscus, and Schisandra berries. More weird Asian fruit ingredients - cool.

This beer pours a hazy, very dark reddish brown colour, with two fingers of thinly foamy, fizzy pale beige head, which leaves a few upward strands of sea plume lace around the glass as things drop away.

It smells of grainy, somewhat roasted biscuity malt, medicinal dark fruits - cherry and prune - a spicy rye sweetness, mild barnyard funk, paint thinner, spent yeast, overripe apples, mildly herbal cloves, and a bit of crumbling forest-floor woodiness. The taste is lightly toasted bready, grainy malt, brown sugar, edgy yeast, softly sour red berries, a hint of stale black coffee, earthy anise, faint musty funk, a fading medicinal fruitiness, a tame floral, ethereally perfumed alcohol warming.

The bubbles are decently supportive, and a tad spritzy, the body an adequate medium weight, with a rising metallic edge that more or less precludes smoothness. It finishes off-dry, the sweetness fairly tempered by yeast, spice, and roast.

A pleasant enough experiment, the base saison pretty overwhelmed by the roasted character, as well as the fruit and floral notes. It all comes together for the most part, another step on the road to new style attainment, which seems to be a specialty of this particular gypsy brewer.

 1,341 characters

Photo of dmorgan310
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Looks like a Belgian stout, what with an opaque chocolate color and a tightly bubbled foamy head; outlines the glass with a streak of lace

Smell: Roasted grain, filberts and unsweetened baker's chocolate

Taste: Opens with the roasted grain flavors and moves in a toffee and filbert direction by mid-palate; after the swallow, the unsweetened chocolate adds depth but the finish was very dry

Mouthfeel: Medium body with gently, but frothy, carbonation

Overall: While I liked the beer I cannot help but think that something was missing, and that something was the interesting yeast character that I look for in a great saison

 639 characters

Photo of oline73
4.4/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with a little bit of light coming through at the edges. Initially, there are three fingers of tan head. The head dissipates, but a solid layer remains throughout.

Smell: This one smells quite good. Initially I pick up some sweet roasty cocoa. There is also a bit of Belgian spice. I also pick up a dry aroma that resembles oak.

Taste: Like the smell, initially I'm picking up a roasty, chocolate sweetness. There area also some hints of dark fruit and brown sugar. In the background there are some spice/herbal hints, and a bit of alcohol. The sweet roast remans throughout, but doesn't mute the other flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and a bit slick on the tongue. The carbonation is on the high side. My only complaint is that I would like this to be a bit more on the dry side.

Drinkability: This is a very interesting good beer. I told my wife that I think we should try to pick up a few more bottles to see how this one does with more age. I think the flavors are very well balanced.

 1,064 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a dark black color ale with a large dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of solid rustic malt with light funky ester with some light spices notes also easily identifiable. Taste is a somewhat unique mix between some roasted malt with dry notes with light funky yeast ester and some spices also discernable. The hibiscus and berries were quite hard to distinguish. Body is quiet full with great carbonation. Interesting experiment with good balance between different ingredient but not something I would necessarily seek on a regular basis.

 582 characters

Photo of superspak
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 5/19/2014. Pours fairly pitch black color with a small dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of big raisin, plum, fig, berry, licorice, chocolate, cocoa, toast, dark bread, clove, pepper, herbal, floral, grass, and yeast earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great balance and complexity of fruity/spicy yeast, roast/bready malt, and spice notes; with great strength. Taste of raisin, plum, fig, berry, licorice, chocolate, cocoa, toast, dark bread, clove, pepper, herbal, floral, grass, and yeast earthiness. Good amount of earthy yeast spice on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, plum, berry, licorice, toast, dark bread, clove, pepper, herbal, floral, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, roast/bready malt, and spice flavors; with a great malt/spiciness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, crisp, and fairly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome dark saison style. All around great complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, roast/bready malt, and spice flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

 1,429 characters

Photo of Boone757
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Kurmaraja
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

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A Saison Darkly (Import Series Vol. 2) from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 347 ratings
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