Stillwater / Brewer's Art - Debutante | Stillwater Artisanal Ales

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Stillwater / Brewer's Art - DebutanteStillwater / Brewer's Art - Debutante
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342 Ratings
Stillwater / Brewer's Art - DebutanteStillwater / Brewer's Art - Debutante

Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Maryland, United States

Style: French Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
It’s my pleasure to present a collaboration with The Brewer’s Art. A Baltimore institution that helped to pioneer the Belgian beer movement in the States. Brewed with a combination of Spelt & Rye, accented with a blend of Heather, Honeysuckle, and Hyssop. The result is a rustic farmhouse ale displaying earthy tones & floral characteristics while maintaining intricate balance.

Added by StaEva on 06-14-2011

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Ratings: 342 |  Reviews: 117
Photo of TerryMills
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has the musty wet hay smell like a farmhouse beer which kinda turned me off but the flavor doesn't match the smell.. Its more of a smooth drinking sweet fizzy beer like a Belgian ..

Tons of head, I assume bottle conditioned..

Would buy again for sure.

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Photo of travelguy
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Beginner2
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Could it be that the biere d'garde as a style is losing its way from northern France and gaining new character from the States?

I ask this for three reasons. First, I like the style. I consider it one of the softer, maltier food-friendly styles in which garlicky, herbal foods and this ale style tend to bring out the best in each other. The malt-hops balance is different here because the food has herbs, so the ale emphasizes how it can be a malty accompaniment. (And that is what I favor.)

Second, it has been increasingly hard to find the French brews in Chicago over the last couple of years and I have noticed more and more U.S. brewers offer their take on the biere de garde... some surprisingly good, most inventive and interesting... albeit consistency is a factor.

Third, the American offerings have a much wider range of differences that the half dozen or so French renditions that I've had. This tells me that Americans are thinking less about the style's tradition and, my theory goes, more about how this ale goes less with the stewy foods of the northern French region... and more with the American polyglot palate.

Take my theory for what it is.... I like Stillwater's rendition and much more than many reviewers whose opinions I often read. And my Like goes back to the fact that this malty style is designed for herbal food and, thus, requires less spicing from the hops.

10/17/17: At the end of my 4-pack, I like my theory: this malty style uses herbs in food to give a balanced taste. While I drank the 4-pack with a variety of garlicky foods, the last was a cream sauce with basil. Outside on a beautiful Fall day, what a wonderful lunch.

11/27/17: picked-up a single and it came in handy. I had some leftover, gooey, risotto and reheated it after pouring a healthy dose of Debutante on it. It saved the meal. (Is this a rendition of "Cooking With Beer."?)

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Photo of dcotom
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured cold from 12-ounce bottle into an oversize wine glass. Bottle date 246:14, making it exactly three years old at the time of sampling. Aggressive pour yielded a one-finger white head atop a translucent golden copper-colored body. Nice aromas and flavors of spicy malt, Belgian yeast, banana, and coriander, with sweet, perfumey floral notes wafting over it all. Medium in body, with a very dry, almost oaky finish and a faint sweet cherry note on the aftertaste. There is an unmistakable umami-like character to the flavor profile that makes this a pleasurable and satisfying experience. Overall, this is an outstanding beer. Santé!

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.99/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a tulip. The appearance was a subtle hazy burnt orange color with a thin white foamy head that quickly dissipated. Light lingering lacing runs around the glass nicely. The smell starts off with some sweet honeysuckle, light floral (heather), subtle grassy sweetness. Slight sweet cherries. Light toast (with that good "butter" to it, not diacetyl) The flavor brings everything together to produce a nice sticky sweetness running into the aftertaste with all previously mentioned flavors. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium in body with a nice semi-sessionability about it. Carbonation runs fairly light. Decent for what it is. Overall, good biere de garde. Pretty sure I could have again.

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Photo of Hat_Fulla_Beer
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

355ml bottle poured into tulip.

Pours a hazy burnt orange with a thin cap of loose foam that leaves scattered blobs of lace as it recedes.

Smells of stewed apples and pears, spiced honey, wildflowers, lemon and orange zest, sweet grain, soft barnyard funk and leafy herbal hops.

Tastes of apple crisp, honeyed peach, more juicy orange and lemon, trail mix dried apricots, breakfast cereal, fresh bread, mildly funky yeast and more tea-like hop bitterness.

Feels soft and round. Hefty medium body with silky carbonation. Finishes sweet and citrusy.

Verdict: Highly recommended. Doesn't look like much, but it's a very pleasant evening sipper.

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Photo of emquilxy
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of mothmanscott
4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque gold producing 3+ fingers of finely bubbled shaving cream like, lasting, white head that leaves a thin wash of streaky lace. Aroma is floral, spice, musty yeasty & heavy to white fruits, with a hints of wheat, pepper, bananas & faint clove. Unless the rye is manifested in the spice I'm missing it. Taste is floral, smooth cream, bready wheat, pale malts, lemon, spice, Belgian yeast notes of peach & pear with a dry hoppiness, bitter (heavily so for the style) & lightly sour flavors from just after mid-sip & lasting well into the aftertaste. The bitterness may come from the heather & rye more so than the hops. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, moderate to high carbonation, creamy smooth with a peppery finish. Lasting bitterness on the tongue. I'm not sure about what I should have picked up from the from the hyssop & honeysuckle but the brew certainly has some strong floral notes.

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Photo of TheHopsman
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of SStein
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of pineapple_playa
3.74/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of ordybill
3.05/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is a murky bright golden yellow color with a medium sized off-white head. The aroma is sweet fruit and yeast with some grain added. The taste is very close to the nose. Did not work for me.

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Photo of Taphouse_Traveler
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of REDAMI
4.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 750ml bottle into Orval chalice.

L-Copper-gold color, no head, minimal foam.

S-Very faint nose, sweet/sour grain, must.

T-Grassy and floral on the front end with a slight spice, mellows into rye and bready notes.

F-Sharp, crisp carbonation, dry on the palate.

A crisp, summery beer. One of those unique chances to actually taste all of the ingredients used rather than having them muddled into something else.

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Photo of Emersonio
4.21/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pour: 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass. Appearance: Light gold or straw in color. Mostly clear but also has some slight haze. Scant amounts of carbonation. Slight white head which reduces to a ring around the glass after settling. Slight amounts of lacing on the sides of the glass. Aroma: very nice balance of light malt aroma mixed with hints of yeasty and earthy elements. On the swirl, there is a fair amount of flowery aromas and slight traces of alcohol. Taste: Reverse of the nose in order of ingredients experienced. The funky and yeasty notes make themselves known immediately. After, a slight tartness, which is balanced nicely by the malt is found. Very nice and balanced. Aftertaste: More pronounced malt on the back end as the tart and funky yeast elements recede. Also revealed is some subtle stone fruit notes. Somewhat peach-like. Notes: Excellent balance between the yeast and malt. Result/ Rating: Very good. 4.21 out of 5.

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Photo of Scott17Taylor
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of swgwilt
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of BigAl18
3.71/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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

Photo of BradShook
4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of AD17
3.79/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of innominat
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

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

Photo of pin
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of MattMorin
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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Stillwater / Brewer's Art - Debutante from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Beer rating: 3.84 out of 5 with 342 ratings