Saison By The Sea | Coronado Brewing Company

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Saison By The SeaSaison By The Sea
43 Ratings
Saison By The SeaSaison By The Sea

Brewed by:
Coronado Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 08-24-2008

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 43 |  Reviews: 29
Photo of rrmiii
4.67/5  rDev +34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looking at past reviews, I see they're all from '08-09. I had this beer today (30 May 2011) on draught at Coronado Brewing Co. Based on this experience, I suspect this recipe has been significantly altered from past years.

It reminded me a bit of 2010's Saison du BUFF (Dogfish Head/Stone/Victory). It's a saison, but with a fair amount of herbal adjuncts; specifically: ginger, chamomile, & spearmint. Grains used are barley, wheat, & toasted oats. The ABV is 7.1%.

I thought this was an exceptionally delicious beer and highly recommend it. The herbs really added complimentary flavors to the "base" saison.

Hope to enjoy this one much more during the summer here in San Diego.

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Photo of akorsak
3.95/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at the Tap and Table in Emmaus, PA during their Saison fest. Served from a firkin in a tumbler.

A: The saison is a golden yellow color, bright enough to make you appreciate the orange hues. A half a finger of head laced nicely in strata as I consumed the ale.

S: The nose is very floral and spicy. The yeast strain has created a sweet 'n' sour aroma that has flowers (no hops, mind you) and herbs (anise). A very intriguing aroma.

T: The first sip caught me off guard with the strength of the flowers. A grassy, herbal flavor, from the yeast not hops, drives the taste with a dandelion flavor. Took me a while to pin it down but then I recalled eating the little yellow flowers when younger. Anise and spices are abundant, more bitter than sweet and a nice foil for the flowers.

M: The mouthfeel is unique, floral and very refreshing. A nice start to the night, although I didn't notice anything other than the head that suggested a firkin.

D: The dandelion wildness is worth checking out (maybe that is the firkin at play?). Welcome to PA, Coronado Brewing.

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Photo of botham
4.1/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bomber poured into an oversized wine glass. pours a rich amber color with brilliant saturation and one half finger of tight white head. poor retention with a soapy rim forming after a minute or so.

aroma is of a distinct spicy sourness, with a bret like funk and a bacteria like sourness. some distant malt notes are present, but are nearly lost behind the spice. little else for the nose, with a very unique sour character.

taste is different, with a lightly sweet character and a light funk, without much of a sour character when compared to the aroma. a very light breaded note shows up in the finish. belgian yeast is apparent on the finish as well. very well put together with a light refreshing quality.

mouthfeel is medium bodied with a mildly effervescent and only lightly funky texture. pleasant on the palate.

drinkability is good. for 8% APV, the alcohol is well hidden and the profile is cleverly composed; fresh and flavorful. a solid saison. cheers!

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.67/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

"Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors."


Polished apricot with multiple bubble streams animating the interior. Maybe a little yeasty haziness will appear on subsequent pours (note: it does). Several fingers of fawn colored fluffy foam float atop the beer. The crown looks good enough to get by. Small chunks of soap sudsy lace are beginning to appear on the glass.

The nose is toasted and earthy and spicy, which is a valid variation on the saison style. It isn't funky in the least, which rules out wild yeast. Too bad the brewers had to add spices rather than relying on a kick-ass yeast strain. The beer smells 'brown spicy'... like allspice or maybe cinnamon. Ginger is in there too, I'll bet.

Saison By The Sea tastes more like a spiced beer than a saison. As the former, it's pretty good. As the latter, it's less good. One particular spice is right upfront (too much so) and it's killing me that I can't identify it. Ginger and allspice? There might be a dash of white pepper as well.

The base beer is toasted malty, somewhat nutty, and is sweeter than most beer of this style. Grains of paradise (alligator pepper)? All right, enough with the guessing. In the end, this so-called saison is a cheat and doesn't hold up when compared with the world's (or even America's) best.

The mouthfeel is more big (i.e. viscous) American ale than Belgian ale. Since I like the feel of big American ales, the mouthfeel score will reflect that. Keep in mind, though, that this isn't one of those lightly lush, creamy, amazingly expansive Belgian saisons.

Maybe the brewers at Coronado weren't trying to recreate the classic European saisons. That's fine, but they missed the style mark by a wide enough margin that they should have named the beer something else. Spice Islands Ale may not be quite as poetic, but it's more accurate.

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Photo of OStrungT
2.07/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

This beer pours a slear rusty brown color, with a thick, fluffy tan head. The head fades slowly, leaving a decent lacing. Many bubbles rise up on this one.

This beer smells slightly soapy. Some spicealso. Slightly clovey. A little pepper. It smells very slightly citrusy.

This beer taste like it smells. Soapy. Some spice. Not very good. I can taste a slightly fig like flavor also. Odd, but it dosent taste off, just odd.

This beer is carbonated a little high, but not much. It leaves a slightly fig like aftertaste.

This beer wouldnt be a great session beer. It is a little high in alcohol, and the flavor isnt too good.

Overall: I will never buy this one again. Coronado is hit or miss, and it is mostly miss. Oh well, I knew that going into it.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.62/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bottle into tulip on 7/9/09.

A - Poured a deep caramel/copper-tinted body with solid finger's width of bubbly off-white that settled into a patchy veil and left some spotty lace around the tulip.

S - Spicy aroma with peppery notes and hints of cinnamon and clove. Almost possesses a cola-esque sweetness with brown sugar, caramel, sasparilla, molasses, licorice... you get the picture. Pretty complex nose overall.

T - Spicy initial flavor with plenty of sweetness by way of the malt. Spicy yeast delivers a hint of pepper and perhaps even some ginger root. There is lots of caramel, molasses and licorice happening here. Very sweet and syrupy flavor overall.

M - Medium bodied with a sticky, syrupy texture and moderate carbonation providing a spicy tingle on the tastebuds. This is an extremely sweet saison, perhaps bordering on cloying.

D - Pretty nice saison overall, however a bit too sweet for my personal taste. A bomber was certainly more than enough for me. On the other hand, I really enjoyed the complexity of this brew and pulling out all of the aromas and flavors.

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Photo of robbyc1
4.15/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my brother Dave for sending this bottle, a nice looking 650ml bomber with an intriguing label.

Nice hazy orange look with a 1 inch head that lingers.

Nose is spicy and belgian yeast! Ya, I like that. Some pepper there, or grains of paradise, not sure but good. Maybe some zingy cinnamon.

Taste is good, just not as good as the nose. Malty, with the spices but expecting more depth. Good balance at the end makes up for it, good fruit in the flavor including banana, pumpkin, and grapes, I'm enjoying it but it's not your usual Saison. No funk or sourness here.

Nice heavy mouthfeel, soft with just enough carbonation. It drinks very well for the abv, easy drinker and satisfying. I would love to keep this one around...maybe more as a winter warmer, but damn nice.

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Photo of maskednegator
2.98/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Tawny, opaque brew. Puffy head that deflates almost instantly, leaving no lacing.
Smell: Cloves! White wine, lemon peel, allspice.
Taste: Holy fuck that's sweet. Raisins, bananas, apples, yeast, slight malt presence, peppery finish.
Mouthfeel: Lots of carbonation, heavy body.
Drinkability: Not too bad. No alcohol bite with the 8% liquor, but it's really fucking sweet. It's gonna take me at least 3 episodes of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia to finish this bomber.

Verdict: Not terrible. Something I'd happily split between friends.

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Photo of hopdog
3.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle acquired in trade with Dunk (thanks!).

Poured a deeper golden / orangish color with a smaller sized off white head. Aromas of ginger (stronger), citrus (oranges), caramel, and other spices. Tastes of citrus, ginger, caramel (more than aromas), and honey sweetness.

Notes from: 9/26/08

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear, deep golden-amber body with a small, whitish head.

Smell: Rather malty nose dipped in caramel with notes of added spices, fruit, toasted grains, and a particularly strong jolt of aromatic ginger.

Taste: Caramel maltiness, a touch grainy, and having a honeyed sweetness. Hmm, the certainly didn't skimp on the spices. Again, that ginger comes through pretty strongly. Middling fruitiness with a hint even of candied orange wedges. Fairly phenolic at times. No more than a mild hop bitterness. Picks up a bit of bread crusts in the lightly sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Shows some promise (and spicy promise at that), but it comes off a bit too sweet and a bit lacking in carbonation for what I'm looking for in a saison. Maybe some other time, Ariel.

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Photo of magictrokini
3.34/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear gold with a bubbly white head. TONS of spice in the aroma; coriander, clove, cinnamon, pepper, ang maybe ginger. It smelled like opening a bag of spice gumdrops. The taste was also TONS of spice. More of the same, with a good helping of citrus hops. The beer got to be overwhelming. The only thing I could compare it to would be eating a spice cake blended with a fruitcake in the middle of an old chuch during Christmas time while they were burning incense. Just too much after a while.

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Photo of SirSketch
3.06/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Obtained a bottle from Jw347. Thanks!

Very hazy orange colors with golden hues throughout. Clear white head that fades quickly. The nose consists heavily of banana-nut bread, citrus, coriander, and yeasty qualities. Not very aromatic, really.

Very buttery taste and very sweet. Very subtle hop qualities. Some grape and citrus flavors, as well. Not much else to say. The mouthfeel is very slick and light to medium in body. OK beer but I wouldn't go out of my way to get it.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
3.53/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber into my glass a golden orange with nice two finger head on top and some active bubbles. Aromas start off with a mixture of caramel and fruit salad malts along with a forward yeasty spiciness that brings notes of pepper. There is a lot of spice here with hints of clove, ginger, coriander and more. Sweeter and more robust than a typical saison.

First sip brings sweet malts upfront that move into a rush of spice and fruit tones. Hints of pepper, clove, ginger and cinnamon all come through as it flows down with a yeasty kick. There's a touch of alcohol on the finish. It's a bit too sweet overall though.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and somewhat chewy. It's a bit heavier than I would like personally. Overall, an interesting brew but a bit off from a traditional saison. The bottle goes down easy enough and I'm glad to have the chance to sample it. Thanks to KingG for offering it at his store.

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Photo of JonathanL7890
3.82/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.
Head is small to moderate.
Appearance: medium to dark amber. Unusually dark for a Saison. Fairly transparent.
Smell: peaches , apricots, honey, pepper, coriander, clove.
Taste: lots of spice -- almost like a christmas ale with belgian yeast. Alcohol notes.
Mouthfeel: good - could be a bit more carbonated to be a little crisper, lighter on the palate.
drinkability: A good beer , a bit unusual for a Saison.

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Photo of andyinsdca
1/5  rDev -71.3%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

One of the most revolting beers I've had the misfortune to drink in 20+ years of drinking beers, and that includes skunked beers and crap brewed with formaldehyde. I took one sip and was assaulted by a very bizarre sweet/sour/fruity taste that I couldn't place. I got the strange aftertaste that I thought might be brewer's mustard. I took a second, very tiny sip and dumped the rest of the bottle in the sink.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.52/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I bought this bottle from South Bay D&L. Thanks Joey!

It pours a hazy orange with a 2 finger head of foam. It leaves some nice sticky lacing but the head retention degraded as the session went on.

The smell is fruity and spicy! I get notes of pear, lemon, some peach, corriander, clove, and an earthy yeasty tone. Nice and complex.

The taste starts off both earthy and sweetish. The fruit plays it big here. Lots of pear and peach tops, with some apple, with a lemon twang that I find mostly in the finish. Plenty of spiciness as well with some big notes of ginger and lesser notes of pepper and clove. Underlining it all is an earthy yeasty presence.

It has a light body, the carbonation is light, and it finishes slightly bitter and ginger spicy...a very dry finish. I can feel the alcohol after I finished my first pour but it doesn't show up in the smell nor the taste. Just some light warming after the swallow.

Bottom line: I think this is a good example of a Saison, lots of fruity and spicy flavours going on but...and this is no slight to Coronado but, I think there is something about it that, well, doesn't inspire me to seek it out again. I can't really pinpoint my reason for saying that. Maybe too much fruit and/ or too much spice? Though I "will" finish this 22oz bottle, the more I sipped on it, the more difficult it became to take another sip. Maybe I just picked a bad time to pop the cap on this one...

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.48/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle Date 08.08.08; Sampled August 2008
As I pour this into my 25cl tulip glass it is quite obviously spicy and aromatic with notes of earthy coriander and freshly grated ginger being quite prominent. The beer pours with a three finger thick, light tan colored head. The beer is a ruddy, amber color that shows a hazy, amber-tinged, copper color when held up to the light. The spices clearly dominate the aroma of this beer, with the two mentioned spice notes being the most prominent. There are also aromas of clove, candied apple, dusty slight stale cracker like malt, woody pepper in the nose, some nail polish and a concentrated pear note.

Lightly sweet, which accentuates fruity flavors of pear, some light sweetened lemon zest and sweet apple cider. The spice flavors actually numb the tongue a bit with the prominent ginger and turpene-driven clove notes. Finishes a bit on the warm side from both the piquant spice character and some touches of higher alcohols. This definitely has an earthy spiciness to it, certainly contributed by the yeast character, but there might also be a touch of coriander here (though then again maybe not). Really gets phenolic, especially as it warms up; strong clove notes are joined by lacquer and nail polish flavors that, while not overwhelming or harsh, are definitely noticeable. Medium bodied for a saison, though I would not say it has too much heft, though I prefer both a drier and lighter version of the style.

Very spicy interpretation of a Saison; they used both a very spicy yeast strain and chose to spice it quite well were one or the other probably would have sufficed. Not bad and even somewhat tasty, it just comes off as being a bit overboard.

Purchased: South Bay Drugs, Imperial Beach CA

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Photo of Stoneman78
4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque dark orange hue with a large off-white head that mostly sustains and leaves modest lacing on the glass. Nose is ginger, citrus, light fruits, yeast, herbs and spices, very light and flavorful. Initial taste is pears, peaches, apples, and apricot with grassy hops, yeasty tones and peppery spices enter midway along with lemon zest and ginger, finishes dry and sweet. Medium-bodied with a creamy smooth texture and ample carbonation. Very flavorful and full-bodied saison with a deep fruit profile, hooray on my first ever beer added!

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Saison By The Sea from Coronado Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.48 out of 5 with 43 ratings