Siberia Rhubarb Saison | Ilkley Brewery Co.

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Siberia Rhubarb SaisonSiberia Rhubarb Saison

Brewed by:
Ilkley Brewery Co.
England, United Kingdom

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed in collaboration with Melissa Cole, we have used world famous Yorkshire Rhubarb to add a hint of sourness. There is earthy spice, and fresh vanilla from this naturally hazy Saison. Refreshing on the palate, with a long, satisfying bittersweet finish. Proving a big hit in the USA, this version is brewed specifically for keg dispense, and the carbonation lifts all of the composite flavours beautifully.

Added by StJamesGate on 05-28-2012

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Reviews: 13 | Ratings: 51
Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.89/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

500ml bottle into a teku.

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color. The clarity worries me in a saison, but I do see dregs in the bottom of the bottle, so I won't lowball the score. The head is a finger high and barely off-white in shade. Its texture is typical for a saison - foamy and sticky, decent duration, and lots of lacing left on the glass. Actually, the lacing level is downright exemplary (it's practically a consistent wall). (4)

Smell: It seems quite sour at first. Afterwards, it fades away to reveal more generic saison notes. Muted ones, at that. I only pick up light black pepper and minimally detailed herbal qualities. Is this brewed with brett? Smells like it has it...albeit in a rudimentary manner. Rhubarb appears nicely at first, only to practically disappear after opening up. What's left is a rather average saison. (3)

Taste: This opens up a little tart, which I always like. It seems like it's coming from rhubarb instead of brett, though. This trails off into gentle savory notes (some vanilla, too), and an earthy finish. I really like the rhubarb flavor at first, but after a while, this beer's simplicity makes it hard work. (2.75)

Mouthfeel: Creamy like any good saison should be, but the finish is heavy and sweet for the style. It also doesn't have enough carbonation to help will it down any easier. (2.75)

Overall: It isn't a bad beer, really, it's not. My problem stems from the fact my enjoyment is coming from the rhubarb itself rather than how it integrates with the base saison. The latter is frankly boring and generic, and that ultimately spoils everything else about it. I won't be revisiting this one anytime soon, or even at all. (2.75)

2.89/5: Much like Siberia, it leaves me cold

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Photo of fourstringer
3.6/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle (maybe 0.5L?) into a Brewer's Art goblet with a moderate hand. Best before 03/15 is stamped on the label.

A: Hazy, somewhat dull, golden yellow body. A thin layer of coarse, white head slowly forms and quickly dissipates. No lacing.

S: Malty sweetness with notes of apple, grape, bread. Brown sugar. Hay. Indistinct spice. Belgian yeast.

T: An unexpected earthy peat and smoke open. A lightly toasted maltiness swells before a light hop bitterness closes it out semi-dry. Lingering smoke and noble-type hop notes in the aftertaste. Minimal alcohol presence.

M: Low carbonation with a light to medium body. Suspect a bad seal on this one.

O: Carbonation issues aside, this one landed squarely in middle-of-the-road territory. Advertised rhubarb is conspicuously absent.


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Photo of MaltLickyWithTheCandy
1.5/5  rDev -54.5%

Drainpour. Tasted like watery, overly sour crap. I love saisons and this was utterly disappointing. Maybe it was infected. I'm not really sure, but a lot of reviews here says its supposed to smell and tasted funky and earthy. This tasted like dirt.

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Photo of Dave1999
3.84/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale, transparent amber with no head at all.

The smell is cloves, banana, sour rhubarb.

The taste is sour rhubarb, cloves, some earthy notes.

The mouthfeel is light with low carbonation.

Overall a pretty tasty beer. The rhubarb works well here. I wouldn't call this a saison though, it more of a hefeweizen with English hops. Although it looks more like a pale ale.

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Photo of rangerred
3.76/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle into a nonic.

Pours a crystal clear medium gold with a small half-finger white head. Quite unusual for a Saison as I was expecting a nice, big, billowy head. The head retention and lacing are pretty good, though.

Immediately in the aroma the fruitiness from the rhubarb is noticeable. Very nice creamy Belgian notes along with a touch of toast and caramel. Definitely can tell this is a saison but it has some uniqueness.

The flavor closely follows the aroma with lots of fruit that stands out. Peach and strawberry along with maybe a bit of cherry. Spicy belgian yeasty notes along with more light toast. Some light tartness coupled with some sweetness on the finish. This one lacks that dry crispness I've come to look for in the style.

Overall, a nice take on a saison and very unique coming from an English brewer. Almost an English/Belgian hybrid. While this beer doesn't quite hold true to the style, the end result is definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.39/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

i wanted to love this, and i wanted it to be amazing, and i wanted to taste the rhubarb really strongly, but none of that really pans out in this beer, my first i think from ilkley. its a lighter copper to dark golden colored brew, mostly clear, but mostly flat looking too. the smell says to me neither rhubarb, or saison unfortunately. its just a bunch of dry pale malt and a slight apple fruitiness, with what seems to me to be a rather generic ale yeast, nothing saison about it. no wheat in the grain bill from what i can tell, and certainly no farmy or funky notes from the yeast at all. the disappointment for me in the taste here wasnt the yeast though, it was the lack of rhubarb. such an interesting and uncommon ingredient, i want it to shine, and the saison seems like such an ideal platform for it, the execution here is quite poor. not that the beer itself is all that bad, its really pretty decent ale, but the idea is so much better sounding than the beer is tasting, and i cant move past that. overall more bubbles would have helped it, but the lack of interesting yeast and any indication of rhubarb at all made it a real let down.

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Photo of kencarman
2.98/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

This really pisses me off. I'm a beer judge.

Where the hell is the rhubarb. I LOVE rhubarb! Slight sour in the mouthfeel. That's it.

Saison? Uh, NO. More a Scottish ale with some caramelized malts, no hops and, again, slight sour. The mouthfeel medium, low side of because caramelized malts can fool the palate. Carbonation low but hangs with quaff.

Nose is fruity, but not rhubarb. More caramelized malt and slightly sweet orange.

Good clarity with a 2-3srm. Urine color. (Not bad, just is what it is.) Head fades fast with fine bubbles. Great presentation.

Why "pissed off?" Because it's a fine beer. How many times have I been at the table and a pale ale pours darker than Guiness, or obviously has a hefe yeast and wheat in it? So I couldn't give it kudos because it's not what it claims to be: for example... rhubarb almost not there. Saison? If the Saison yeast is there is didn't do the job and the malt mix is wrong.

"Siberia?" What's up with that?

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Photo of chinchill
3.35/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle served in a Belgian snifter. BBE date stamp: Jan. 2015.

Pours golden-amber in color; clear; some bubbles that barely form a head before dying. No lacing to speak of.

Aroma: tart, fruity and earthy. Complex and quite variable.
Flavor: at least as bitter as it is tart, the rhubard is otherwise hard to detect. Mild for style but still complex. Some nice bready malt evident.

Feel: low carbonation seems adequate but lower than optimal. Light-medium body. Dry

O: better than feared; weaker than hoped. A touch timid but solidly refreshing.

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Photo of bark
3.04/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

The colour is gold, the liquid is hazy. Finger thick white head. Nice thin lacing.

The smell is a bit metallic. Notes of yeast and tart fruits. Peaches and a bitterness reminding of a session IPA.

The taste is sweet-tart with some American wild ale-flavours of minerals, earth and growing sourness. Hints of wheat flour and alcohol. Medium body. The aftertaste got some clean alcohol and hints of refreshing/cooling mint. Un-sweeten rhubarb jam in the finish.

The carbonation is light to medium strong, the bubbles long-lasting. The liquid is semi-smooth.

The carbonation was a bit too weak for a saison. And as usual, the Bishops Arms pub chain serves their (non-pilsener) beers way too cold. This one got stronger rhubarb flavours when the temperature rose.

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Photo of EmperorBevis
3.39/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I drank this amongst others last night

The hazy clouded amber body was a bit off putting

not a lot of aroma but the fruity nature of the brew is present on the nose

now all the tastes came through, the Saison and the yeast and some of the malt
but combined, I don't know man, it just didn't work
it reminded me of poorly looked after lines

it was heavy going I should have had a half

A decent enough beer
I think I enjoyed it :S

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Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.65/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A 500ml bottle with a BB of July 2013. ABV is stated as 5.9%. Acquired from Trembling Madness in York a while back and stored in my garage. Described on the label as a collaborative brew with beer writer Melissa Cole - a saison infused with rhubarb.

Poured into a tulip pint glass. Bottle conditioned and very highly carbonated, making it tricky to pour. A deeply hazy, almost opaque amber hue, though intense carbonation is visible until the yeast becomes fully suspended. Produces a massive head of frothy white foam with good retention; this slowly reduces to a thick surface layer. Aroma of fruity, earthy yeast esters with hints of tart rhubarb, mild banana, faint clove and spice. Slightly sour, with a touch of alcohol in the background.

Tastes of tart fruit and earthy yeast, with a dry finish. Notes of acidic rhubarb, yeast esters, white pepper, mild clove, a hint of banana, spice and earthiness. Little malt or hop character to speak of. A slight herbal bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth, dry, spicy and tingly, with prickly carbonation and nice body for the style. Quite astringent - dries the palate. Aftertaste of mild rhubarb and earthy yeast.

Rather nice - the tartness is pretty refreshing. This is all about the yeast; it's interesting how the malt and hops can be virtually MIA yet the result is still satisfying. Looks decent, though you could be forgiven for mistaking it for a weizen. The aroma and flavour are sharp, fruity and yeasty - much as you'd expect from a saison with rhubarb. Body is alright; dry and spritzy. A well-crafted brew with an unusual character. Worth sampling if you have the chance.

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Photo of CwrwAmByth
3.06/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a dimpled pint mug.

Pours a clear golden colour, with a lively but short lived white head.

Smells warm and spicey.

Tastes odd. Like a pale ale, but with more emphasis on spicy yeast, perhaps too heavy as it turns into a significant 'tang'. Tart fruit, which I assume is the rhubarb and hops, dominates. Biscuit-like, and sweet malts form a significant body, preventing it from really being as refreshing as I'd like from a saison.

Overall an odd one. I think you have to be a lover of rhubarb to really like it.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.65/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at Mason & Taylor, Bethnal Green, London.

Murky blonde with cream film. Waxy yeast and a rhubarb sweetness that I might be imagining on the nose.
Polenta, some yoghurty yeast and white pepper to end.
Red currant finish, a lemon yeast comeback and a tight, tart linger. Light to medium, surprisingly chewy, soft.

How is this not a BSPA? I need to learn more about yeast, but I don’t see the Saison doing much here. A hint of rhubarb, but not as refreshing as I’d expect for the style.

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Siberia Rhubarb Saison from Ilkley Brewery Co.
3.3 out of 5 based on 51 ratings.
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