Carton Brewing Company

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Farmhouse Ale - Saison
Ranked #583
Ranked #13,278
4.01 | pDev: 7.48%
Carton Brewing Company
New Jersey, United States
Very Good
Notes: French Saison yeast and pepper is a game we like to play. Here we decided to extend the turf to peppers. The pitfall of chile beers is that over time capsaicin continues to strengthen while most the other aspects of a beer deteriorate. Even perfectly balanced pepper beers step a bit out of line straight out of the tanks. The notion of Tharsis is that much like chile heat grows over time, saffron pungency also grows. Rather than try to control the burn we will keep up with it and revel in its growth. Drink Tharsis cool now or hot later.

25 IBU
Reviews: 5 | Ratings: 37 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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Act25 from New Jersey

4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

All the best beers for me are see-saw flavor profiles that tease apart and together sweet, fruit, breads, grains with bitter, pepper, yeast, wood, char. Carton is a master at this game and Tharsis (wish for more of it) is a master example.
Just picked up a case at the brewer during Covid and reminded myself I had not written a review of Tharsis.

A) Pours hazy orange body under a half inch head, and plenty of lacing.
S) Spice cabinet but subtle, herbal, yeast, pepper.
T) Follows smell and does that see-saw thing: starts with spice and herbs, becomes orchard, overripe hanging/falling fruit, yeast, and finishes peppery . Just a whiff of saffron and of heat.
F) mid- and rich mouthfeel, with bright, higher level of carbonation.
O) Drink Tharsis because we like contrasts and transitions and a flavor story arc.
Tharsis contains the solar-system's largest volcanoes on Mars Plateau:

Apr 25, 2020
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Jason from Massachusetts

4.41/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

1/2 liter growler, sample from the brewery.

Bright golden color, spectacular show of head and lacing. Yeasty and doughy with a spicy phenol note that stand up well with the faintness of chile peppers in the nose. Proper Saison crispness and lighter body, slow heat from the chile peppers goes very well with the mellow medicinal phenols from the yeast. Saffron is there but a bit hard to pick out, seems to add to the depth of this brew rather than being a star ingredient ... that is what saffron is best for IMO.

Very well put together, love that Carton stayed 100% true to what the Saison is yet added an extreme thinking to it.

Aug 28, 2015
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GreesyFizeek from New York

4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Madison Pourhouse in Albany, NY.

This one pours a hazy orange, with a half inch head, and a little bit of lacing.

This smells pretty herbal, with some spicing, saffron I'd guess, though I don't know exactly what saffron smells or tastes like. There's some yeastiness as well, pleasant and restrained. Don't really get any pepper aroma.

This one starts with a herbal and spiced thing up front, with a middle section of saison yeast, floral, slightly perfumey, with a lingering peppery finish. The heat is pleasant, and not too dominating, it only appears at the end here.

This is medium bodied, with a fairly full mouthfeel, and a higher level of carbonation.

A really unique and interesting beer here, typical weirdness from Carton.

Jun 20, 2015
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beerthulhu from New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

-Saison. draft. goblet.

A: One finger bready white head, hazy light orange coloring with a strong haze. Milky covering, low coverage retention no lacing.

S: Dry barnwood, funky dry belgian yeast and grains with musty orange. Low to medium awareness with light citrus peel and bread, short duration.

T: Musty orange flavor, dry bread, spicy dry belgian hops, hint of dry sourness. Black peppery spicing lingers nicely, with a gentle warmth . Dry honeycomb, musty wood, spicy belgian yeast finish.

M: Semi crisp mouthful, bready, low carbonation, dry peppery spicing afterfeel.

O: Spicy, lightly peppery spicing, dry, citrusy hops, 85-87 feels about right here.

Jun 03, 2015
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Nickwierda from New Jersey

4.88/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. Love what they did with this beer. Looks and smells like a regular old saison, but there's a spiciness there that leaves a sort of warm glow on the palate- really wonderful. Not like habanero sculpin, which tastes like the freaking spicy oil you find at chinese restaurants- this is a delicate heat that announces its presence politely but firmly. It's there, but it plays a supporting role to the funkiness and yeastiness of the saison, and it works beautifully in this beer. And the aftertaste is all saffron. Absolutely delicious beer, and probably my favorite saison. Wish they would put this in cans.

May 04, 2015
Tharsis from Carton Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 37 ratings