Zaison Imperial Saison Ale | Brewery Vivant

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
BA SCORE
81
good
43 Reviews
THE BROS
82
good
Read the review
Zaison Imperial Saison AleZaison Imperial Saison Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brewery Vivant
Michigan, United States | website

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by MichPaul on 05-12-2012

BEER STATS
Reviews:
43
Ratings:
183
Avg:
3.55
pDev:
32.68%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
18
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 43 | Ratings: 183
Reviews by JohnnyHopps:
Photo of JohnnyHopps
3.79/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a can into a mini-snifter, Zaison was a handsome copper color with a slight white head. The aroma was rather underwhelming with a mild grainy aroma. Nothing in the aroma would suggest this to be a special beer. In the initial taste, one gets lemon, a grassy orange taste, mild pepper, and a faint twang of barnyard funk. In the aftertaste, the ale evolves into a sour grassy taste. Toward the end of the glass, I believe I detected a little heat. The thickness of the saison was on par, allowing the funk to linger in the mouth. Though unspectacular, this is very drinker. "Imperial" suggests something to be amped up, but there is little about this that seems amped up. Overall, a very drinkable saison.

 716 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of StoutHunter
4.39/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a tall boy of Brewery Vivant's Zaison Super Saison last week for $3.29 at The Lager Mill. This is the second beer in Brewery Vivant's Brewery Reserve series, I thought that the first one, Kludde was pretty unusual so hope this one turns out good, so lets see how it goes. No visible canning date, but its a fresh spring release, pretty fitting for the season. Poured from a 16oz can into a tulip.

A- The can is pretty much the same as the other beer in the series. except it had a nicely drawn castle scene on the sticker, it looks pretty good. It poured a nice pale golden color that was kind of hazy and took on a nice bright orange tint when held to the light and it had two and half fingers worth of velvety smooth white head that left hardly any lacing and died down to a thin ring that eventually faded to nothing. This was a proper looking Saison but I wish it had some lacing and better retention.

S- The aroma starts off with lots of sweet malts that have a slightly wheaty and bready aroma. Next comes a pretty earthy hay and straw aroma followed by a slight tart aroma. Next comes those typical spice aromas that you get from the Belgian yeast followed by some citrus rinds and some peppery aromas. Towards that end I get some grassy and earthiness that could be from some hops. The aroma was pretty damn nice, and just how I would expect a well done Saison to smell and the extra alcohol didn't show up in the aroma.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma, at the start I get some some pretty sweet malty and wheaty flavors followed by some nice lemon and orange rind flavors and a lighter amount of peppercorns. Next comes a little bit more sweetness with some grassy hay and a very slight funky slightly barnyard flavor followed by a little bit of tartness. Towards the end I get a really slight amount of alcohol followed by some more and sweet and tart flavors and a sweet, bready, and citrusy aftertaste. I really like the flavor of this beer, it had all those normal Saison flavors they just stuck out more and were much bolder I really liked that.

M- Pretty smooth, slightly creamy, crisp, on the thicker side of being medium bodied, and it had a lower amount of medium carbonation that worked well with this beer. The mouthfeel is nice, it's much bigger then your normal Saison, but so is this beer, so it's needs a bigger body, it works out well.

Overall I really liked this beer and I thought it was a good example of a Saison, specifically the higher alcohol or Imperial Saisons, I haven't had many but this beer had all the nice flavors and aromas that I want from the style just way more intense. This beer had great drinkability, it's a bigger beer but the alcohol hardly shows, it goes down smooth, and has more then enough flavor to hold my attention, I wouldn't mind drinking on a four pack on hot day. What I liked most about this beer was pretty much every thing, but I thought the aroma and taste stuck as being especially good. What I liked least about this beer was nothing, I couldn't find one flaw with this beer and that doesn't happen very often, but I do wish it was a little cheaper and that this was a year round beer and not a limited release. I would buy this beer again, it's a little expensive but worth the price, in fact I will be picking up a four pack before this great beer disappears. If you like Saison's, but want something a little stronger with bigger flavors this beer is for you. I thought the first beer in the series was just ok, but Brewery Vivant really took it to the next level with this beer and it is pretty much everything I would want in a Super Saison, I might even try holding on to a can for a while to see if any of those light funky flavors get any stronger. Brewery Vivant did a great job with this beer and I can't wait to see what else they have in store for this series, I hope a Quad and Tripel show up in the near future, great job guys this is one awesome Super Saison. 2014 Update, so I did end up aging a few of these for a year and it got a little funkier and the spices really dropped off, I like it, but it's a different beer from when it was fresh. I might try aging one even longer to see what happens.

 4,220 characters

Photo of DanGeo
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of tectactoe
3.61/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours golden with a hint of orange. Hazy, with a nice-sized white head. No lacing to speak of. The nose is full of wheat, orange zest, lemon peels, herbal spiced tea. The taste hits with background notes of banana and clove, along with nice warming alcohol. Peppery spices, lemon herbs, and pineapple really come through about halfway into the sip. The aftertaste leaves the palette with a slightly bready and sweet malty flavor with a touch of bitterness and sweet fruity esters. Slight hint of floral notes in the background, but hard to notice. Medium body with sharp carbonation.

My first saison. Tasty brew here, although it's hard to compare to other saisons since this is my first one. Based off of this one, the Belgian style is noticeable, but I would prefer a Belgian strong ale or dubel/tripel over this type.

 821 characters

Photo of MadScientist
4.33/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I stop by Vivant on my way back from a wedding and had to pick up some samples
This pours a slightly haze deep gold. The rocky white head fizzles away quickly like half an alka selyzelter.

The aroma is like orange, apricot and with some spice which is mostly pepper and something else. There is some low spicy hop aromas and some alcohol in the nose.

Wow it's like a hug hit to the palate with big thick layers of fruit and spicy the dominate flavors being orange, apricot and pepper. There is a moderately high bitterness and a fairly firm tartness like there tasting like they had used some orange peel. There is that belgian yeast quality in there with a hint of sourness. The hop type bitterness really hang in there after the fairly dry finish.

It a little thick for a Saison style with a medium-heavy body and high carbonation.

I didn't know what to think of with an Imperial Saison other than that sounds like a great idea. This really fits that description, it an assertive bold beer with the Saison characteristics amped up a few notches. It's a great concept and it's well executed.

 1,098 characters

Photo of Jason
3.62/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16oz tallboy can with no freshness date.

LOOK: Bright golden, lacing on the glass, thin head

SMELL: Agave, peppercorns, citrus peel, quince paste, tartness, herbal, alcohol, poppy seeds, crackers, yeast

TASTE: Slick, crisp, tart, bitter, peppery, faint fusel, citrus peel, earthy, phenolic, herbal, nutty yeast, pineapple, applebutter, broth, peppery drying finish

Very bold and does not wait around to take over my palate. Peppercorn is a the perfect level though it too more than a few sips for this one to turn around, thankfully it did and ends up being pretty good.

 574 characters

Photo of Guinnsslvr
2.5/5  rDev -29.6%

Photo of Jackalope1977
3.91/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of williamjbauer
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of goast8127
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of deuce9259
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of fishkab
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of rolandboy
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of Dustin_A_Stoutdrinker
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of beergorrilla
3/5  rDev -15.5%

Photo of Hurkie70
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of zonker17
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of ajz132
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of ianpstephens
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

Photo of deakin
3.63/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GRG1313
2.5/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Gold white color with light white head. Orange/light toast nose. Very big and bold flavors but not pleasing - sour in a weird "not supposed to be sour" kind of way. Tastes like spoiled oranges. No need to try again.

 221 characters

Photo of jduprey007
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of YogiBeer
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of SpdKilz
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of TheSamKuehn
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Zaison Imperial Saison Ale from Brewery Vivant
81 out of 100 based on 43 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe