Guillemot Nebula
Tired Hands Brewing Company

Guillemot NebulaGuillemot Nebula
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Farmhouse Ale - Saison
Ranked #108
Ranked #2,352
4.22 | pDev: 9.24%
Tired Hands Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States
Guillemot NebulaGuillemot Nebula
Notes: Barrel fermented Dark Saison
Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 182 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Gus_13
Gus_13 from Mississippi

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nose is tart with a lot of dark fruit. Almost wine like with just a hint of oak and light roast. The taste follows in that it starts tart and lots of cherry and dark fruits. When it finishes there is a lingering roast and touch of chocolate. Very dry and drinkable. Medium mouthfeel and carbonation. I'm always a fan of this one.

May 29, 2018
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Sabtos from Ohio

4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This beer is almost black with a tan-amaretto blanket.

Smell is smoky char and roast with tobacco and baker's cocoa.

Taste is tart yet toasty with a char and some cherry, molasses, strawberry balsamic, blackberry, and a roasty aftertaste.

Frothy soft and smooth but almost powdery in the semi-dry to dry finish.

Mar 14, 2018
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larryi86 from Delaware

4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

8 oz poured on draft

A- Black with a small mocha head.

S- Tart berry, dark chocolate, oak, cherries

T- Chocolate, cherries, currants, tart berries, oak, some roasted malts.

M- Smooth, medium body.

O- A very nice sour with some stout qualities. I love to see this bottled again.

Mar 11, 2018
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thebeers from Pennsylvania

4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours very dark -- a ruby-tinted black --with a finger of mocha-colored head that leaves solid lacing.

Chocolate, coffee, cherry and a slight sour note in the nose.

The taste is like a dry Irish Stout mixed with a fruity sour Flanders. It's tart, fruity, roasty, dry. Definite coffee notes. Cherry, currants and red licorice. A hint of vinegar. Roasted malt aftertaste mixes with a lingering creamy, tart fruitiness.

Creamy feel with good carbonation. This is a mindfuck of a beer. Recommended.

Mar 10, 2018
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ajm5108 from Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

They seemed to have dropped the “nebula” on the draft board but otherwise it appears unchanged. Dark pour, fluffy white cap. Aroma has classic saison yeast, chocolate malt, blackcurrant & raspberries. Taste is along the same line - a nice melding of darker flavors (coffee, chocolate, smoked malt) with drier funky / fruity notes (blackcurrant, dry cherry, Saison yeast). Dark saisons can be tricky but this is a great example of one done right

Feb 25, 2018
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MusicaleMike from Pennsylvania

4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

I'm travelling back through my Tired Hands bottles. They seem to have taken a brief hiatus, and I think it's about time to start cracking into my only bottles left of these older gems. Guillemot Nebula, a dark saison. I poured this 375ml bottle into my stemmed OG Believer's Club glass. It has a solid black body, with a thick mocha head on top that shows signs of good lacing. The bubbles are like soapy water, slowly popping in the glass. The head recedes slowly. The beer resembles a stout with a huge head.

But the aroma clearly separates this from the stout category. Despite the blackness of the body, the aroma offers notes of tangy tangerine/mandarin, cranberry, sour cherry, oak, and then underneath all that: roasted cacao. It's tangy, funky, oaky...yeast and wood dominate this entirely.

Upon first sip, the tart aroma is confirmed. Citrus zest tang, semi-acidic, balanced by dark chocolate from the black malt. A deep roast quality on the exhale. Light smoke. Retronasal shows off the really excellent wood quality. Sharp carbonation, acidic, medium body, long finish, but hits the right mark for a saison.

This has held up incredibly well these past 3 years. Great carbonation, appearance, smell and taste. No signs of oxidation. A great example of what "Black Saisons" could be, stylistically speaking. The yeast and wood clearly have the most influence followed by the malt.

Apr 26, 2016
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Phyl21ca from Canada (QC)

3.78/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color ale with a medium light brown foamy head with OK retention and limited lacing. Aroma of vinous notes with some tart notes and light roasted malt notes are also perceptible. Taste is a mix of vinous notes with some tart notes and some light roasted malt with light oak notes also perceptible. Body is pretty full with medium carbonation. Enjoyable but did not have the depth I was expecting.

Jan 20, 2016
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cpetrone84 from Pennsylvania

3.42/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pour is black with a small amount of beige head. Nose has a light wood, some toasted grain, hints of roasted malt, and some sour cherries. Flavor is well balanced, a fair bit of roast, light booziness, some pleasant sour cherry, maybe some lacto in there. Well carbonated, light body, easy drinking, fizzy finish.

Oct 25, 2015
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MasterSki from Canada (ON)

4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle shared by Kristina at West Lakeview Liquors. Served in a n Abbaye de Cureghem glass.;-)

A - Pours with a dark tan foam that settles to a collar, wisps, and minimal lacing. Near-black body; one of the darkest Saisons I have encountered.

S - Mix of vinous oak, semisweet chocolate, farmhouse yeast, lightly roasted malts, a touch of bourbon. Complex, but all the elements blend nicely together.

T - The taste is more tart and heavier on jammy red wine, with the roasty flavors moving to the periphery. The sweetness of the malts and and oaky vanillin come out more as the beer warms. Oaky finish, with a touch of bourbon.

M - Creamy, medium-full body, with lingering stickiness amid the dry, tannic finish. Well-hidden alcohol. Quite hearty and enjoyable

D - One of the few dark Saisons I've actually enjoyed. Also the best thing I've had from Tired Hands. Would happily drink again.

Jul 07, 2015
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Jonada from New Jersey

4.29/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

500 ml bottle into a 10 oz taster glass

Appearance: Pours a dark brown, basically black once in the glass. 1 finger of a brown head that dissipates to a thick collar. Body is opaque.

Smell: Red wine, oak, roasted malt, black currant, leather, mild spicy, floral yeast character.

Taste: Medium sourness is detectable right away. This yields to big vinous notes, dark berries, burnt malt, oak, and a smokiness that lingers into the finish and aftertaste. There's some earthy funkiness that comes out as the beer warms, but it's extremely mild.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a soft, almost creamy mouthfeel and medium fine carbonation. Dry finish.

Overall: Another good bottle release from Tired Hands. Worth seeking out.

Apr 01, 2015
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jlindros from Massachusetts

3.53/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to rudzud for sharing.

Light fizzy head, dark head, no light dark pretty much black.

Nose sour bacteria, funk and tart fruit, some brown malt sweetness, candy malts and caramel, sour dark malt like an oud bruin. Mild toasty oak.

Taste is sweet and tart, sour brown malts, oud bruin all over, with some vanilla barrel and toasted oak, creamy like, etc. Bacteria lacto funk with creamy lacto city, sour brown malts, etc. Nothing else really. Finish sticky flemmy, sour brown malts and lacto funk, booze all over the back end.

Mouth is med to heavier bod, decent carb, flemmy.

Feb 28, 2015
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rudzud from Massachusetts

3.53/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared with JLindros. I think this is batch 2.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a very dark almost black hire with a thin head that fades to leave light wisps and a thin halo.

S - Aromas of vinous wine barrels, funky yeast, lacto maybe, dark malts, light sourness.

T - Taste is similar to the nose. Darker malts, loads lacto, light sourness, the malts are strong with loads of rich malts and light funk.

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, a bit thin.

O - Overall this beer was an enormous let down, light funk, messy.

Serving type: bottle

Feb 28, 2015
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.24/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours fudge brown and is capped by an impressive head that leaves a web of lacing behind

Smell: Caramel, sour cherries, lemon and earthy tones

Taste: Sour cherries and lemon, on the front end, with the caramel building in the middle; some chocolate and coffee elements appear, after the swallow, with a vinous aspect in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: A wide variety of flavors in this beer with both sweet and tart elements as well as the hints of chocolate and coffee; excellent

Sep 30, 2014
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MDDMD from Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-dark brown color with a decent light tan head and little lacing

S-caramel malt, dark fruit, hint of leather, slight funk, little oak

T-dark caramel malt, sour cherries, raisins, little funk and yeast, red wine, oak

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, tart and viscous

O-interesting saison, unique flavors and pretty harmonious

Aug 29, 2014
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UCLABrewN84 from California

3.76/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

Thanks to Chris F. for sharing this one.

Pours a murky brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is slightly sour and tart with roasted malt, fruit, and acidic aromas. Taste is much the same with slightly sour and tart roasted malt and fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty but the sour aspect comes across slightly better in the aroma.

Oct 28, 2013
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thebigredone from Wisconsin

3.21/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Well, Monday just wan't my day for tasting beer.

Attempted Redrum was a bad bottle, and now my Guillemot Nebula is likely infected.

Taste is okay, some roast, no bourbon, and a big weird cherry finish on the flavor. The two other BA's tasting this and I were all unanimous inc alling out infection. Still drinkable, but clearly not what this was intended to taste like.

Jul 31, 2013
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kbuzz from North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into Kane glass...both courtesy of 'beerontwowheels'...cheers kind sir!

A: dark...wasn't expecting it to be a dark saison. Some ruby red highlights, but mostly opaque. Half finger khaki head that simmers to a layer of patchy lace. Solid looking beer...could be mistaken for a stout based on appearance alone.

S: Funk, oak and red wine notes...slight acidic vinegar...and some roast in the background.

T/M: Nice, real nice. Follows the nose to a degree. A good bit of roast, some funk. Acidity is there but doesn't give you heart burn, just a nice tartness along the tongue. You do get just a touch of the alcohol warming believe it or not. Loving the mouthfeel...I'd call it a medium to medium-full. Carbonation is absolutely perfect...keeps the beer moving across the palate but stops just short of being fizzy.

O: Really nice surprise of a beer. Good for all seasons. Not necessarily a saison, but tasty nonetheless. Better than other comparable "dark" wild beers out there (JP, Brewery Vivant, etc...). Really dug this...will be looking for Prunus next or other botted Tired Hands beers.

Jun 02, 2013
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BeerLover729 from New York

3.99/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Impressive. thick tan head sits atop an opaque dark brown/black brew.

Serving it at about 50 degrees or so it is pungent right out of the bottle. Lemons, kumquat, sour grapes and tart cherries all followed up by char roasted nuts.

The attack is all grapefruit flowing into rich chocolate and nuttiness. The finish highlights the roasted char of the malts accented by the dry "corky" flavor i find in certain sours. This combo culls out the oak tannins and showcases charred barrel flavors. The whole melange leaves a persistent tangy mouthwatering effect.

This comes across as a full bodied saison. It sits as a medium weight brew on my tongue, which is heavy for my take on the style. The fizzy small bubble carbonation and acid itself take away from the smooth viscous texture but i def know its there.

Unique. Insightful. Contrived. Bold. Domesticated. Yum...i definitely yum.
The corky flavor i referred to, whether it be from some brett or pediococcus or lactobacterium, along with the roastiness of the malts used does produce some off flavors. Maybe its cause i am a sucker for sours...complexity alone this beer has something to offer.

May 17, 2013
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Alieniloquium from Florida

3.97/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Dark brown. Small head but it's a small pour. Wispy surface.

Smell - Very fruity. Yeasty. Dark fruits. Some dark malts. Mostly yeast.

Taste - Very fruity again. More distinct dark fruit character. Bretty. Slightly bitter. Dark malts come through a little. Red wine, vinous notes.

Mouthfeel - High carbonation. Bretty and dry.

Overall - Good fruit character, which is apparently from the barrel, which is impresive. Dark malts never impress me in a saison though. Still pretty good.

Side note: I enjoyed this much more the second time. First time it was probably the 20th beer I had had. Palate was shot.

Apr 20, 2013
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eclipse54 from Minnesota

3.57/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A wax-dipped, 375 mL bottle from inlimbo77; thank you!

A black body with a centimeter of beige head; mild retention and sufficient lacing. Aroma is of red wine, tart cherries, sour grapes, a bit of chocolate, and perhaps some prune. It tastes of tart cherries, grapes, and apple upfront, with a chocolate center. A bit of the bourbon and vanilla come through in the middle as well, especially as it warms. Dry oak, red wine, and the faintest hint of ethanol on the finish. Mouthfeel is tart and dry, especially on the finish. Lively and puckering up front, smooth in the center, but desiccating at the end. Overall, this is a wonderfully complex and unique beer. The darker ales in a red wine barrel seem to be increasingly common, perhaps due to their intriguing complexity. This one has a lot of great features, but almost seems like it’s trying to do too much all at once. Still, tremendously enjoyable!

Apr 13, 2013
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fdig23 from Pennsylvania

4.41/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375 mL wax-dipped bottle.

Appearance: deep dark brown, black in the center with a small off-white head.

Nose: Kinda restrained. Subtle sour cherries, a bit of lemon, lots of sweet sticky caramel and toffee, some syrupy coca cola.

Taste: Big sour black cherries and lemon zest up front, then the candy caramel comes through in the middle. It finishes with an earthy chocolate and coffee with a lingering sourness and clinging sweetness. Really nice balance of the sour cherry wine barrel aspects, sweet caramel bourbon barrel, and dark malty base beer.

Mouthfeel: Rich and creamy. Really impressive for the style and amount of aging.

Overall: Very impressed with this one. Expert blending of barrel-aged varieties of a tasty base beer. The sourness is rather restrained here and I think this could appeal to stout drinkers and sour fans alike. If you don't have a bottle, its definitely worth seeking out.

Mar 15, 2013
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WillCarrera from Ohio

4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

375 ml bottle at Hunahpu Day 2013. Thanks Abe!

A- Pours a dark brown mahogany color, produces a thin mocha head that settles to a collar.

S- Funky slightly tart aroma, some vinous and cherry fruitiness. There's also a lot of oak from the barrel, which also lends some vanilla and tannins.

T- Moderate tartness with more grape and cherry, a decent amount of vinous flavor. There's also some roasted malt, a bit of alcohol warmth towards the finish.

M- Medium-bodied, nice carbonation, smooth, slightly dry feel.

O- An interesting beer, we drank this on a day chock-full of awesome beer so it didn't particularly stand out from that pack, but it's pretty tasty and definitely worth trying.

Mar 13, 2013
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Huhzubendah from District of Columbia

4.46/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Huge thank you to Michael for sharing this gem.

Served in a Tired Hands wine glass.

The beer is chestnut brown with a soapy beige head. The aroma brings brown bread, wine barrels, oak, wild yeast. The flavor follows suit. Strong wine barrel presence. Sweet fruit and wild yeast with aggressive funk and barn character. A touch of cherry with some dark brown ale characteristics. A fine beer. Thank you.

Mar 09, 2013
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oline73 from Maryland

4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I was lucky enough to have this side by side with the Prunus. Served from the bottle into a tasting snifter.

The beer pours a dark brown color with a small amount of off white head. The smell is less sweet than the Prunus. There is a mildly tart note along with a hint of oak. The taste is less sweet as well. I'm still getting a dark fruit note. The tartness is less than the Prunus, but it's still there. I would say this beer is a bit smoother. Some oaky notes in the finish. As with the Prunus, nothing is saying saison to me.

Mar 06, 2013
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xnicknj from Pennsylvania

4.31/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330mL bottle poured into Tired Hands stemware

Inky black pour with a frothy tanned head resting on top. Fades slowly into a wispy slick of retention with spotty lacing littered around the glass.

Complex, warm nose with hints of toasted malts, yeasty funk, tartness, cherries and toasted oak. Tannic with red wine, grape skins, bourbon and soft glowing heat.

Snappy sourness right up front with layers of cherries and grape skins. Fruity and vinous, driven by red wine character, tobacco, toasted oak and bourbon. Hints of vanilla and chocolate in the malt base, roasted dark tones and soft sweetness. Tart, funky yeast on the tongue with alcohol warmth in the finish.

Medium body, upper level carbonation, dry and bubbly on the tongue. Fascinatingly complex and interesting beer which offers much more than the typical barrel-aged saison (also, I found this to be more of a straight up wild ale).

Feb 26, 2013
Guillemot Nebula from Tired Hands Brewing Company
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 182 ratings