Elder Brett: Saison-Brett Golden Ale | Epic Brewing Company

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Elder Brett: Saison-Brett Golden AleElder Brett: Saison-Brett Golden Ale

Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company
Utah, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Epic Brewing Company’s latest barrel-aged beer brings something new—wild yeast. This brew is a collaboration ale with Crooked Stave Artisan Brewing of Fort Collins, Colorado. Chad Yakobson, brewmaster/owner of Crooked Stave, is well known for his skill and knowledge in the brewing of sour and Brettanomyces driven beers. The beer was brewed at Epic by the two brewers. Kevin Crompton, Epic’s brewmaster, and Chad spent several weeks working on the recipe and selecting the proper Brett strains and barrels for the beer to morph from a golden Sasion into a Saison-Brett Golden Ale.

Added by JohnGalt1 on 01-28-2012

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Reviews: 97 | Ratings: 433
Photo of wordemupg
3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at a tasting a ways back, from notes.
Clear light golden yellow, has a floral cider thing going on, I guessed elder flower but the name might be tricking my brain, well that and all the booze I've had by this point. peppery, woody oak, faint brett, has body but it softens up, floral finish

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Photo of biboergosum
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle @ 9.4% ABV - wow, this one's gonna be a doozy!

This beer pours a mostly clear, medium golden yellow colour, with two fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and somewhat creamy off-white head, which leaves some streaky coral reef atoll lace around the glass as it evenly bleeds away.

It smells of slightly funky Brett infection, grainy and doughy pale malt, a lesser edgy wheatiness, sensible yeast, some plain white wine barrel essences - a light toastiness, indistinct grapes, and some understated vanilla - muddled earthy spices, and some very tame leafy and floral green hop bitters. The taste is gritty and grainy pale malt, some crackery wheatiness, a mixed Brett/Saison yeast astringency (one surprisingly low-key on the funkitude), white wine lees, a dry vanillan woodiness, and more herbal, floral, and weedy green hoppiness. No real impression of the near 19-proof booze quotient, for the record.

The carbonation is fairly reserved in its unmotivated frothiness, the body a decent middleweight, and mostly smooth, just a minor sense of the bacteria/yeast intrusion making for a wee fuss here. It finishes off-dry, the white wine character lingering the hardest (that sounds weird, don't it?), while the guest beasties keep up their charade of good breeding.

Overall, this is actually a more or less pleasant wild/farmhouse/saison ale, with the subtle barrel treatment going a long way in glossing over the effects of the Brett that one might have been expecting. At any rate, not a bad brew, but more evidence that I need to spend my dwindling beer dollars on stuff that really floats my proverbial boat.

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Photo of Flounder57
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle was poured into a snifter.

Appearance: A one finger head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a golden straw yellow color with great clarity and vision of bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: Nice funky Brett flavor, vanilla, apple, toasted, biscuity, cracker, green apple, spicy, chardonnay grapes, oak, and some alcohol.

Taste: Nice light funky Brett barnyard flavor, vanilla, toasted, biscuity, cracker, pale malts, green apple, chardonnay grapes, oak, warm alcohol, some bitterness, and a little chewy.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied, a little dry, slightly chewy, sour, tart, some bitterness, and medium to high carbonation.

Overall: Have to admit that this beer got better with each sip. Can't believe it's 9.4%. I'd revisit this one again.

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Photo of shleepy
3.03/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear and golden. Small head. Smell has a champagne-like yeast/sugar quality and some Brett. taste is similar - a little residual sugar and plenty of Brett character. Honestly, tastes a lot like some my older, mediocre homebrew that I was recently tasting. Disappointing.

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Photo of brentk56
3.56/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear goldenstraw with a frothy head that fritters away, leaving copious amounts of lace

Smell: Floral, almost honeysuckle-like, with a funky, leathery tone; a vinous aspect, as well

Taste: Funky and floral, with honeysuckle and other herbal elements; strong, oaky white wine flavor builds; farmhouse and medicinal, in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: I guess I am going to go against the grain here, but I really don't care for the flavor profile here; reminds me of a non-fruited mead with Brett

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Photo of svenness
4.46/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Batch 6, bottled December 2014

L: Clear straw-yellow, white head
S/T: Funk up front, lots of apple esters, a touch of bubblegum, tangerine, some grain, wine wine notes on the finish
F: Medium bodied yet dry, moderate palate carbonation and faint bitterness
O: Great brett forward saison, hard to believe it is 9%

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Photo of MFMB
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up Elder Brett at the SLC cold case this evening. Pours a clear golden straw color with little head, what head is the disappears immediately. Funk, spicy, grainy citrusy, peppery funky funk funk. I like it. I'm down with Elder Brett.

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Photo of uccle81
4.52/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've probably had about 20 different Saison style beers. I grew up in Belgium and I've never particularly been a fan of the style. But this is exceptional. They've managed to make this stuff like the Nectar of the Gods!

The end result is a delightful beer that is sour but balanced with apple flavors and a slight malty sweetness. And the barrel aging is perfect. Brings a slight bit of wood and nice sour flavors. This beer is a treat.

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Photo of Redrock
4.46/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Elder Brett pours a clear gold-yellow, with a thin head that fades in a heartbeat into a slight film that laces the glass. This saison’s name articulates, there’s a hefty amount of Brettanomyces in this golden ale, and the barnyard funk really evident on the nose, earthy, funk and hints of sour green apples. But the first taste is citrus, white wine, and sweetness, rounded out with a hint of oak and white pepper come out, ending with a crisp finish. For a 9.1% ABV brew, it’s very drinkable.

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Photo of bubseymour
4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Lots of brett in the nose. Very champagne like in smell. Taste is almost funky apple cider like with a grainy finish. Very different and pretty decent.

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Photo of russpowell
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent gold/honey with pinky of pearl white head. Minimal head retention & lacing

S: Sourness, hell I smelled it as soon as the bottle cracked! Grassyness as well, horse blanket, wet hay

T: Pears, grassiness, sourness & dryness up front. Some grapefruit, pineapple & more Brett sourness as this warms, a little white grape as well. Grapefruit & sourness dominate, a little sweet fruittyness with some breadynesss, a little more pear as well. Finishes with sourness, pineapple, dryness & white grape skin

MF: Medium body, pretty firm carbonation, tails off as this warms

Drinks too easy, another great beer from these guys. Sourness done right

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Photo of oceanman907
3.93/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was an interesting and insanely funky brew, maybe a little bit under carbonated, hence the head disappears quickly, the beer itself if bright golden, lovely color crystal clear which is not so important for this style, I like a little cloud. Smell is funky, musty, almost thom Ka gai soup like with its citrusy qualities. Very fungal with the taste as well, this is one funky beer, really barnyard flavored, but the alcohol is not present in the flavor. Good light body. Overall a solid, Brett ale more on the funky side than the lemon sweet side.

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Photo of MUTINY
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Quick review. Big-time brett going on here. Looks & smells pedestrian but kills it on the palate. The wine barrel aging is detectable but subtle, just as it should be. Like I said, very nice brett-funk, some citrus & yet it still reveals its crisp, yeasty saison roots. Brilliant stuff!

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Photo of Moose90
4.46/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served into two tulips

A – Pours a bright pale yellow with almost greenish hues, reminiscent of the label coloring. Tall bright white head fades rather quickly to leave a think cap with spotty lacing behind.

S – Smells of tart and crisp green apple, ginger, lemon, allspice, vinegar, funk, oats, brett featured wonderfully.

T – Taste builds upon tart and sweet granny smith apple notes, as well as a nice bitter lemongrass tone, slightly spicy and funky brett finish.

M – Medium bodied, highly effervescent, really nice balance here.

O – Fantastic collaboration between two great breweries, there is a great balance within this one.

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Photo of Stingraystripe
4.49/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a glass. Color is clear and golden, and effervescent. Good lacing. Nose is winy with hints of citrus. Mouthfeel is tightly bubbly. The wine comes out in this one very strongly but complements the saison style incredibly well. I don't think this one is for everyone, certainly not for the stout and malt drinkers, but if you're into saisons, and have no aversions to white wine, this one is just excellent. One of my late spring favorites for sure. (and the label's a pure bonus if you've ever lived in Utah or anywhere close. Just sayin'.)

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Photo of brureview
3.84/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured a light golden color with one finger in a tulip glass.

Aroma: very Brett forward. Almost like a vinegar aroma.

The taste is a good balance between the strong Brett character and the wine- barrel. The Brett is a bit overwhelming, with undertones of wine in the flavor.

Overall: a very good beer. I prefer Boulevard Saison Brett and Seizoen Bretta -from Logsdon Farms. They were not aged in Wine barrels ( to my knowledge) so the Brett character works well in those beers.

I am questioning whether a Brett Saison does well aged in wine barrels. Perhaps the taste is almost towards a vinegar type of taste.

Overall, though, a very good beer which will appeal to a certain tastes. If you are an over the top Brett fan, you will greatly enjoy this beer.

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Photo of pat61
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours hazy straw gold with a 1” white foam collar that descends to ¼” and leaves light lace.
S: Barnyard nose with over ripe fruit, some wine notes, citrus, and a faint banana.
T: A funky, sour fruity palate with spicy herbal notes, lemon, some orange hints, a dash of pepper and traces of oak with a dry, tart finish.
M: the beer has the distinctive Brett texture – refreshing, very fine soft carbonation, medium light body.
O: This is a refreshing saison with a big Brett and wine character.

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Photo of spacecake9
3.94/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden color, very limited head.
S - Aroma is yeasty with lemon.
T - Flavor is yeast, just a little sour, others suggest alcohol in the finish but I do not. almost champagne like.
M - As expected, crisp, dry and thin with a lot of carbonation.
O - I'm not an expert on Saisons but this one seems a little different. Perhaps it's the Brett, or the wine barrel aging. I agree it's good cold and it was so good I never really let it warm up. This is not a sour beer, it's a farmhouse ale and if you enjoy that style you should give this a try. Glad I did.

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Photo of Floydster
3.71/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22 ounce bottle

Appearance is a clear golden yellow, small white head, minimal retention, and no lacing

Smell is tangelo, grapefruit, and oranges, a bit of vinegar, straw, Belgian yeast, and strawberries

Taste is very similar to the aroma, brettanomyces and other wild yeast up front with sharp sourness for a saison, sweetens up as it warms, too boozy in the finish towards the end, was much better at its coldest with the first few sips

Mouthfeel is prickly with lots of carbonation, very thin but I think that helps lighten it up because it is borderline boozy once it warms, not much body

Overall was a nice and complex saison with nice citrus notes, a hint of berries, and some straw, it would have been a lot more enjoyable had it been a few percent lower in alcohol

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Photo of samshaw
3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Very clear, light goldenrod with moderate white head and suds. Particularly thin.

S: Moderate sour with light fruit akin to orange.

T: Medium wild yeast dominates the palate with sourness, leaving just a hint of sweet. Moderate alcohol flavor uncovered on the aftertaste.

M: Very thin and crisp.

O: Refreshing and light beer that goes down easily.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.38/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brief write-up. The nose doesn't do a good job of expressing detailed Brett notes (instead, it's faintly offensive), but the flavor profile works better. It's vaguely tart at first, with a nicely complex finish. It's a bit sweet, but it's 9.1%. A classic example of a beer that smells better than it tastes.

3.38/5: Lame nose, impressive taste

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Photo of AshburnWineShop
2.77/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Pour out of 22 oz bottle. I though the color for a saison was very nice, honey in color.

Smelled of soap box, floral..Acacia and resin.

Taste was hard to wrap my head around. Not tart but honey and flowers come to mind.

Over all - it didn't taste appealing to me.

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Photo of cjgiant
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottle release #6:
I've had this previously and really enjoyed it. Finally a chance to review it formally...

Pours a crystal clear golden - as the description indicates. Head is fluffy, white, and sticks around. Decent thin coverage, medium thick edge, and good lacing.

Nose is more fruity than I expected, but the Brett funkiness shares the nose. Poached pear, something I want to say is nectarine or not fully ripe plum, then the aforementioned Brett funk, and a distinct but subtle light wood note.

The taste starts nicely as the nose did, fruity and a lot more like apple than the fruits I got in the nose. There is a light burn that reminds me this isn't a light ABV beer. The Brett seems to blend more with the wood notes in the taste, yielding in the end to a mute tartness that is enjoyable. The carbonation plays well early but seems to fade faster than is like.

This is one of those beers that, for me is greater than the sum of its parts. Definitely a must purchase when available to me.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.24/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Release #7. Poured from a bomber into a snifter, the beer is a hazy, golden coloring with a wispy, sparse surface coating of head. Aromas of tart and sour white grape must forward, toasted grains, granny smith apple, woody and earthy tones, and some subtle tart berry notes. Smells pretty balanced. Flavors are toasted grains forward, followed by a tart white grape, pear, granny smith, chardonnay wine, and woody notes. Smooth bodied, with a dry, lingering finish, allowing the tart and slightly sour fruit blend in the aftertaste plenty of time to flex their muscles. Good beer!

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Photo of GabeBoise
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

One of the nicest brett beers I've tried. Vinous tart nose with a strong but not harsh brett flavor. More on the fruity and lemony side with a juicy slightly sweet finish.

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Elder Brett: Saison-Brett Golden Ale from Epic Brewing Company
4.01 out of 5 based on 433 ratings.
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