Free Spirit | Terrapin Beer Company

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Free SpiritFree Spirit

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerDawgs on 10-28-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 9 | Ratings: 39
Photo of SFC21
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A nice, simple sour. Tart, not puckering, with a prevailing flavor of grapefruit juice/flesh. Not super complex but very refreshing. Good hot weather beer and starter sour.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

"We encourage you to dabble in this collaboration ale brewed in loving memory of Brittney Fox Watts, a member of both the Heavy Seas and Terrapin families. In true Farmhouse fashion, this free-spirited memorial ale celebrates her passion for anything unique, fresh, creative, and maybe a little bit crazed. Free Spirit has a big heart and a beautiful soul. Keep an open-mind and trust your palate, we believe this beer will make you smile." Brewed in the style of a Saison/Farmhouse Ale with sunflower seeds and elder flower added. A one-off limited batch collaborative brew between Terrapin and Heavy Seas to honor a mutual colleague whose life was cut tragically short. Available in 22 oz. yellow wax sealed bottles and on limited draft.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a Terrapin snifter. Served above 53º Fahrenheit.
My cap had rust under it, so watch out for this when you pour your beer!

(Appearance) Pours a crisp, fizzy head of an eggshell white color over a very hazy golden amber body. Expect light, sporadic carbonation and little to no sediment. Retention is below average and lacing is nonexistent. 2.75

(Smell) Light, cracker malt notes, bold notes of tart apple cider and pear with a pleasant sourness. Spice and hop presence is very low, with some faded peppery and floral notes in the background. Free Spirit has a modest but enjoyable aroma that mainly focuses on a light, sunny malt and quality yeast build. It smells very much like what I expect of a traditional farmhouse ale with no frills nor extra baggage. Potency is mild/medium. 4

(Taste) Up front is a clean, mild cracker malt lightness that sets the stage for a series of charismatic yeast notes. Moderate acidity unfolds for granny smith apples, pear juice, possibly elderflower and peppercorn that team up well together. A charming beer with a lot of yeast enthusiasm, even when the other ingredients don't pull together much else. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) Texture is light, chewy, acidic. Carbonation adds a perky level of carbonation for a fizzy, frothy mouthfeel, perhaps overdoing the assertiveness a notch, although I'd rather the carbonation be more lively than not. Light body for a saison, light/medium body overall. Alcohol presence is low. Balance is equal parts sweet and tart, bitterness doesn't have much of an impact. 3.5

(Overall) It's not easy to knock a memorial beer since the breweries undoubtedly poured their heart and soul into it, with good results. The beer drinks very much like a traditional saison with a quality, very tasty yeast strain, a simple, highly drinkable malt build and a virtually nonexistent hop profile which, to be fair, may have thrown this beer wildly out of balance if it were included. In reading the label, I can't be sure that sunflower seeds made any play in the flavor of this beer at all. I can only say that I picked out the brightness and positivity that this beer presents to the beholder on the flavors it has- surely it may be representative of its namesake, Brittney Fox Watts. As far as saisons go, it likely won't match the quality world class saisons of Belgium but this is an honorable and traditional take on the style. My hats off to both Terrapin and Heavy Seas, and I hope that they dabble in beers like this more often. 3.75

Terrapin Beer Company's
Free Spirit Saison (With Heavy Seas Beer)

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Photo of zoolzoo
3.82/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours golden, slightly hazy. Quick forming three finger white head. Appears bubbly, high carbonation.

S: Extremely floral, more notably so than many "floral" smelling beers. Bouquet of flowers, yeasty funk, dull lemon rind.

T: Initial flavor lends itself toward the lemon peel from the nose. Nice fruity bite with a black pepper corn zing to it. Belgian yeast and the floral component round out a long lingering finish.

M: Medium in body, medium carb. Slightly less bubbly than the appearance would suggest.

O: A good but not outstanding saison. The floral component is interesting, especially in the aroma!

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Photo of jsanford
4.09/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle with a lovely yellow wax-job poured into a Tumbler.

A - Pours a cloudy orange with a dense white head that settles to a very slight haze and ring.
S - Big, floral Saison aromas of, well, flowers, along with some sweet malt, bread dough, elderflower, lemon zest, and Belgian yeast.
T - Taste is just as floral and fruity as the nose suggests, with big notes of honey, doughy malt, flowers, grassy hops, yeast, and a very recognizable toasted sunflower seed finish. Refreshing and drinkable, I wish this came out in the Springtime!
M - Crisp and quenching, with a medium body and good carbonation.
O - A solid Saison effort from two breweries I have a ton of respect for, I'd love to see this released again.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.54/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad beer, it certainly strikes me as a farmhouse ale, with a nice tartness and some fresh herbal flavors. Not as spicy or crisp as a saison, this still does have some nice herbal and fruitiness as a plus. The downsides are that the head fades away to nothing, and the mouthfeel is almost slick as opposed to being crisp. There is also a bit of wateriness at the finish. I do like the aroma and flavors- nice dark fruit, and fresh herbal notes as well as a surprisingly pleasant bitter vegetal finish. An interesting beer, but not quite a success, still, a very nice homage.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.18/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11 ounce goblet - $7.00 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia. Brewed to honor the memory of Brittney Fox Watts, which is a good thing, but the label and tap handle features a furry, which is a bit alarming.

Appearance: Arrived to the luncheon table a hazy, amber-gold body with a scant, though sustained white head.

Smell: Sweetish smelling malts, a bit bready, not quite a bit toasty, but delivering a fair amount of honey. Moderately floral and tiny pinch of lemon zest.

Taste: Honeyed, sweet, bready and rather smooth. Light flowery aspect slides in carrying with it some mild citrus hints and a nibble of sweet apple. Low herbal tone, equally light bitterness. The beer remains fairly honeyish on the rear. Drops a hint of finely ground black pepper and dries out at the last possible moment before the finish, though still a bit heavy-ish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Smooth mouthfeel.

Overall: I always prefer my saisons to be light, crisp, and reasonably dry, like a Saison Dupont. Oftentimes, the American renditions just end up heavier, heartier, and sweeter, which, for me, kills the whole refreshment factor. I'm more interested in the use of sunflower seeds in brewing, it raises a few questions: how did they contend with the oils, did they go sans husks, etc.?

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Photo of PhillyStyle
2.97/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at Brick Store Pub (Decatur, GA):

The beer appeared a clear, pale golden color that, when it arrived at the table had about a half finger of head, but then was gone in a flash. No cap and no lacing to note.

The aroma is average for the style...typical, not a strong aroma, but not weak either. Some mild sweetness was noticeable and some very mild yeast notes.

The taste of the beer was good, certainly not on par with the likes of Ommegang's Hennepin or The Lost Abbey's Red Barn Ale, but it showed some fruity sweetness and mild yeast, nothing overpowering or complex, but a nice flavor.

The beer had a medium body and good carbonation. The beer was pretty well balanced and had a nice dry finish to it.

Overall, to be honest, this is kind of what I expected from Terrapin, as most of the Side Projects that I have tried lately have been less than memorable, this is an average to slightly above average beer, but I guess that I expected slightly more quality given that it was in collaboration with Clipper City/Heavy Seas, as every beer that I have tried of theirs has been very good. I guess I would recommend given that it is a limited brew, but after one, I moved on.

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Photo of QuentinCall
3.26/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

On-tap at The Porter in the ATL.
This is a slightly gauzy/borderline translucent farmhouse ale, pale caramel in color and possessive of a markedly sparse head that fully dissipates almost immediately. The aroma is nearly imperceptible and adds very little to the final effect - a tinge of spice, some alcohol, a glimmer of grain - however, this is not indicative of the taste which is ebullient and multifaceted. Its dense malts are nicely counterbalanced by salt and floral moments while the minimal, though decidedly present, alcohol and carbonation provide admirable heft as well as effervescence. The finish has a more than fitting, if half-hearted, sour tonality. All of these characteristics are somewhat intensified as the beer warms and unravels, the individual elements becoming, to some extent, singularly defined and announcing themselves a little more unreservedly.
Overall, a lovely and enjoyable farmhouse.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
3.76/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 22oz bomber picked up at Green's on the way home from a long week at work. I have been anxiously awaiting this one..

A - An amber golden color, with 1 finger of head and not much lace.

S - Definitely has the aroma of a farmhouse ale. But a mild, low abv farmhouse.

T - Rye, sunflowers, and honey up front. Well balanced and finishes smooth.

M - Medium bodied and carbonation.

O - It is amazing that Terrapin and Heavy Seas collaborated to honor a senseless tragedy. A very good light farmhouse ale.

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Free Spirit from Terrapin Beer Company
3.63 out of 5 based on 39 ratings.
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