Apex Predator
Off Color Brewing

Apex PredatorApex Predator
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Belgian Saison
Ranked #307
Ranked #5,420
4.03 | pDev: 8.44%
Off Color Brewing
Illinois, United States
Apex PredatorApex Predator
Notes: When you brew as much as we do, sometimes we get tired of telling the yeast what to do. For Apex Predator Farmhouse Ale, we pitch the yeast cold, turn off the temperature control, and let the yeast do it's thing. To our delight, it spat out the sweet scent of juicy fruit wafting from a frothy, white mane. Brewed only with grain and sugar unencumbered by the heat of the kiln, we create a hazy, golden body. Apex Predator gets its teeth from a generous Crystal dry-hopping that completes the dry finish with a fruity bite. Pounce on the opportunity to let it part your lips and you may find yourself at the top of the food chain.

35 IBU
Reviews: 168 | Ratings: 1,037 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of defunksta
4.68/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

This is the pride and gem of craft beer,

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, effervescent, bright but hazy lemon color with a light, crispy white head. SRM of 7. (4.50)

Aroma: Initial aroma of pear, white wine, grapes, tart lemon/lime, pear, juicyfruit esters with a peppery spice. A slightly sweet bubblegum ester aroma. present. As the beer sits more sour, tart pear, grape, apricot, and strong heated plastic and grassy funk aromas arise. Strong, mostly grassy or rubber-like aroma. Some yeast pepperness. (4.50)

Taste: Yeasty and peppery initially with a tart pear, green apple, pineapple, grapefruit flavor. Evolves toward a predominately vinous white wine flavor, but tropical juicyfruit is present too. A decent amount of Belgian yeast flavors, mostly coriander. A spicy, dry finish. Pleasant amount of pale bread-malt sweetness comes forth at the end but is well-balanced and dry. The tart fruit and summer pool chlorine bitterness emerges. A fresh rubbery or wet, lemony plastic flavor on the end. Complexity describes the flavor of this beer and what makes it supreme. (4.75)

Feel: Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied and well carbonated. Not overly carbonated but enough. Very clean and dry. Palate cleansing, leaving no resin or oil on the tongue. However, leaves a peppery, and spicy feel lingering on the palate. (4.25)

Compared side-by-side to the Allagash Saison, I would say this one is the winner. Carbonation is less, however the body is heavier, alcohol slightly more pronounced, but the earthy funk is more present that well-balances the spicy, peppery yeast. This is overall a well-balanced and complex farmhouse ale. Yet, it achieves this complex flavor balance while maintaining a reasonable alcohol content, which is not an easy feat. You have to give credit to this brewery for creating this beer profile.

Compared side by side to the standard Saison Dupont: This one has a lighter lemony color. More fruity, tart/sour lemon, pear, vinous aromas. More citrus as well. Less Belgian yeast flavors of banana/clove esters and much less malt. More of a earthy funk. Apex predator is my personal favorite due to the heavy fruity sour/funk, but I would say the Saison Dupont is much more balanced and yeast/hop heavy.

Compared with New Belgium's Sour Saison, this one has more lemon and white wine. Less pear and red grape. Lighter bodied. Less sour. Similar dryness and funk. Slightly dryer. Actually they are very similar.

Compared side by side with a Tank 7: This one has more of a lighter, crisp, yeasty and tart fruit flavor. More tart/sour pear and grape. The funk is more dank and earthy from the Brettanomyces, but less rubbery overall. The mouthfeel is lighter, crisper, less oily. ABV is more hidden. Both have a similar dry finish but this one is cleaner and doesn't last on the tongue.

Compared side by side with Very Very Far (from Off Color). This one has more of an earthy funk. More pear and tart fruit flavors. Much stronger in yeast spice, tart fruit, and funk. Stronger astringency and lingers on the palate much longer. This is the better option.

Compared with Goose Island's Sofie: This one is more bold all around. Has more of tart lemon/lime citrus rather than a tropical orange citrus. Similar white pepper yeast and earthy funk presence. Lighter, crispier, more carbonated. More like champagne.

Compared with Funkwerk's Saison, this one is more tart fruit and less citrus fruit focused. More sour. More funk. Less belgian yeast, spices, and malts. Drinks more like a sour wine than a Belgian Ale.

Compared with the Farmgirl Saison: Similar color and carbonation. It has more pear and peppery yeast flavors. Less citrus and bubblegum. More plastic funk flavor and finishes slightly lighter and dryer.

Overall: Among the best craft beers to date due to the balance & complexity of yeast spice, funk, and fruity flavors. The sour and tart fruit flavors are pleasantly balanced with the rubbery, earthy funk. All rounded-out by a yeast, peppered, dry finish. This beer continues to impress me and deserves a higher rating on BA. Compared with other Belgian saisons it has such a stronger tart/sour lemon, grape, pear, and juicyfruit flavor, with a stronger underlying funk twist. More tart fruit. Less Belgian yeast and malt flavors but still enough underneath. Its unique and absolutely delicious. It's what I compare all my other saisons to. It's a tart-fruit twisted saison. Would describe as a delicious, dry lemonade/sprite with a unique funky twist. Better yet, it's like a white wine with a light, grassy & rubber funk. The novelty of this beer is unlike any other I've tried so far. This beer should be in the Hall of Fame in the craft beer industry. (Final Rating: 4.68)

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defunksta from Illinois, Apr 30, 2020
Photo of HoppingMadMonk
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Medium carbonation as well as medium body. Has a slight oily feel that coats the tongue
Orange and lemon fruit,citrus peel, sugary malt, earthy, mild grass
Taste is citrus fruit and peel,sugar, malt, earthy, grapefruit/hop bitterness
This was really well done and something I would look for again

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HoppingMadMonk from New Jersey, Mar 24, 2020
Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz. capped bottle into Night Shift stemware.

Great goldenrod color. Even better fluffy white head with great retention. Nose is clove, coriander, tulip, cane sugar, peppercorn and a touch of lemon zest. Super aromatic. Perfect for the style. Beer opens flour, coriander and cane sugar. Clove and Belgian yeast in the middle with some breadiness and lemon zest at the finish. This is spot on for the style. Body is light with ample carbonation. Prickly and lively on the palate and goes down aggressive. Sparkling. Dry finish. Super drinkable.

One of the best values in the style.

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SpeedwayJim from New York, Feb 11, 2020
Photo of BayAreaJoe
4.04/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Glad to see this at a grocery store here in the CA Bay Area. Love strong, hoppy farmhouse/saisons, we definitely need more of these around. Highlight is the aroma, yeast funky with bright citrus and grassy hop notes. Taste is mostly funky fruity with tart, riped citrus flavors.

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BayAreaJoe from California, Nov 24, 2019
Photo of TheDoctor
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Serving: On tap
Consumed: Aug-14-2019

Pours a pale gold semi-hazy with big white head that stays and leaves some lacing. Aroma is knockout: floral, soapy. lightly tart, lemon zest, baguette crust, faintly grassy, light funk. The flavor is similar, light malt, some semi-tart funk, etc. A fairly dry, semi-dry feel that is almost fluffy. This was a most excellent saison that really checked most every box that I look for. could be a touch dryer but beyond that just downright good. I would definitely have it again.


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TheDoctor from Quebec (Canada), Aug 18, 2019
Photo of michaelsmith11
4.21/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had this on tap. Poured a light golden color with a small thin head. The smell had some citrus and it was kind of yeasty. The taste was fruity up front and a little spice and yeast on the back end. Nice mouthfeel. Really good beer.

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Photo of ktr5010
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Crisp and refreshing with a little bit of funk. Taste drops off quickly. Translucent light gold color with a whipped egg like head. Not sure how to rate feel with saisons because I don't drink them often.

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ktr5010 from Illinois, May 31, 2019
Photo of EMV
3.77/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Dogfish Head tulip

L: Clear light golden pour with 2 fingers of fluffy white head. Modest ring of lacing.

S: Grape juice, slight funk, and lemongrass.

T.F: Sweetness and honey up front... grape must and some white wine character. Minimal funk and modest citrus. Fruity... apricot and pear. A bit of spice for good measure. Light bodied... dry fruit finish.

O: An interesting saison... well crafted and tasty. Would definitely have again.

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EMV from Pennsylvania, May 27, 2019
Photo of morimech
4.02/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice American saison which I believe is because they do not ferment at too high a temperature which most American brewer's are guilty of. It is bright tasting and not being laden with yeast phenols. Looks great in tulip and is easy to drink.

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morimech from Minnesota, Jan 12, 2019
Photo of Samlover55
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle into Tulip
No date code
Pours a light orange with surprisingly thin white head
Peach, white grape juice
Taste follows nose supported by a sturdy crackery malt, and a big yeasty finish
Medium bodied,  fully carbonated drinks nicely
Overall this is a great saison, I like it

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Samlover55 from New York, Dec 14, 2018
Photo of woemad
4.16/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased at Nectar, Kendall Yards, Spokane, WA, for $3.99. According to the stamp on the neck, it was bottled on June 13, 2018. My first beer from Illinois that didn't say Goose Island on it.

Poured into a Kane snifter (thanks again, MacMalt), this was a hazy shade of gold, with a fat finger's worth of bone-white head. Said head was spotty, streaky, and easily agitated back to life by a twirl of the glass.

Sharp, herbal and fruity esters greet the nose. A fairly spicy take on the style.

Sharpest at the start, midway through the taste things get a little more easygoing, finishing on a light, moderately dry note. As it passes through, the taste has elements of lemon, grass, pepper, coriander, a bit of bread and just a whiff of funk.

Fairly light bodied, with a crisp mouthfeel.

A pretty nice Saison, I must say. It's proving to be a nice beer to drink on a lazy fall Sunday afternoon while watching football. I'll keep my eye out for other releases from this Chicago brewery.

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woemad from Washington, Oct 28, 2018
Photo of Buck89
4.14/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a snifter. A hazy golden color with a thick white head. The foam slowly settled, leaving a few laces. Aromas of tropical fruit, wheat, faint lemon, and some grass. The fruitiness was front and center on the palate, but in a nice restrained way, allowing peppery and lemony esters to present, along with a doughy malt presence. Bright carbonation in line with the style. A clean and dry finish. Overall a nice Saison, will definitely revisit.

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Buck89 from Tennessee, Sep 15, 2018
Photo of Franziskaner
3.94/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Light gold and very hazy in complexion. There's a fingernail of eggshell white on top. Moderate lacing on the glass. The aroma is of peppery to earthy saison yeast. I'm tasting earthy yeast, white peppercorns, and light doughy malt. The mouth is moderately carbonated, delicate, crisp and refreshing.

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Franziskaner from Missouri, Aug 26, 2018
Photo of TooManyGlasses
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

8 oz pour at the Mousetrap tasting room in Chicago. Hazy pale golden with 1 finger fluffy head. Smell is peppery yeast, lemon, melon. Taste is a wonderful slightly funky peppery fruit - lemon tartness, melon, ?coriander on a yeasty backbone. Amply carbonated with refreshingly clean and dry mouth feel. Really good beer and good representation of farmhouse ale.

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TooManyGlasses from Alberta (Canada), Jul 26, 2018
Photo of brentk56
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: The golden liquid presents hazy with a two fingered head; nice retention with copious lacing

Smell: Herbal and vinous with sweaty socks, spicy yeast and vague citrus tones

Taste: Lemon/lime flavors forward with a spicy yeast aspect building; peppery herbal and sweaty sock flavors emerge, through the middle, with the finish phenolic

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall; A muddle of a farmhouse with a number of off flavors I didn't particularly enjoy

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brentk56 from North Carolina, Jun 23, 2018
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Off Color Brewing "Apex Predator"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle without packaging codes or freshness dating
$3.79 @ Total Wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Notes via stream of consciousness: It's a hazy yellow gold beneath a short head of creamy white. I'll assume that the flaked wheat has added somewhat to that haze, and that it's also unfiltered as there seemed to be some yeast in the base of the bottle. So far it looks to have just average head retention and lacing but we'll see. In the nose it's yeasty, mineralish, spicy, and lightly floral and woody. It's got an overall kind of note of crushed lemongrass. The flavor follows with some sweetish golden malt at its base. It's not just pilsner, it's fuller than that and kind of bright, most likely from the honey malt. I was originally skeptical about honey malt but once I started brewing with it I came to love it. Looking back at the head I've still got a solid cap. It's thin, but it's solid, and there are some nice creamy mountains of lace rising along the inside of the glass so I guess I was wrong, it's got pretty good head retention and lacing. Back to the flavor the woody and floral note is interesting. It's unusual. I guess it's a bit herbal as well. And I find plenty of spiciness including just a touch of black pepper, but I'm surprised it's not more fruity, especially as they've allowed it to free-rise during fermentation. I'm getting apple, soft orange, and a hint of lemon, well, it's really more like lemongrass but that's probably because of the herbal quality of the hops. Regardless, it's nice. In the mouth it's medium bodied, perhaps leaning towards medium-light, and delicately effervescent and gently crisp. It's really well balanced although leaning slightly towards sweetness. It's very easy to drink which could be dangerous at 6.5% abv. This isn't my first Apex Predator, I was going to start off with that, and I wondered why I didn't review it, but I decided to just jump in instead, and now I recall why I didn't - sometimes if a beer is really good I just want to enjoy it I just forget about doing a review.
Review# 5,979

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NeroFiddled from Pennsylvania, Apr 29, 2018
Photo of SB2017
3.76/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Looks cloudy, pale green straw. On the nose it's crisp and clear, wintery. It tastes fruity, light, almost like a pinot grigio. Quite nice. The hops are mellow, not overly piney or earthy like many ales, but I get pineapple and passionfruit here. Citrus too. It's a good ale.

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SB2017 from Iowa, Apr 24, 2018
Photo of Cylinsier
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle

Pours a cloudy lemon gold. Sugar white head retains indefinitely.

Smells of rose water, coriander, lemongrass, cracker, and white grape.

Tastes of grape, mild citrus tartness, lemon zest, straw grassy malts, cracker, coriander and a light herbal hop bite.

Medium body with stinging carbonation on the tongue.

A very nice tasty saison, lots of great flavor with some nice mild hoppiness to set it apart. Very much worth trying.

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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania, Nov 29, 2017
Photo of Harrison8
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a cloudy, semi-murky orange with a finger and a half of white head. Head retention is fair with good lacing left behind. Aroma is light Belgian yeast, cloves, and biscuit malts. Flavor profile is Belgian yeast spice, cloves, and biscuit malts at the start, but takes a slightly sour dive as the yeast and cloves fade. Mouth feel is medium in thickness, with a slightly fizzy, harsh feel. Overall, a fair farmhouse, but it does feature a slightly harsh finish and feel.

Served in a 12oz snifter from a 12oz bottle.

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Harrison8 from Missouri, Nov 22, 2017
Photo of mjwellman
4.6/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is the quintessential Saison. Beautiful cloudy straw yellow in color. Wonderful sweet & citrus aroma. The taste is light and fruity. It has a little hoppiness and carbonation. Overall a wonderful beer especially on hot summer day

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Photo of Gregaroo
3.71/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

6/20/17 - Served from a bottle into a pint glass at Formento's in Chicago. Nice and smooth saison. Very drinkable. Glad I tried this one, but moved onto wine with our dinner.

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Gregaroo from Pennsylvania, Jun 21, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.99/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a tulip. The appearance was a hazy yellow color with a one and a half finger white foamy head that dissipated within less than a minute. Lacing was slightly spotty and here and there. The smell had nice fresh sweet grassy tones roll over light sweet bready yeasty orange aromas. With a little bit of pepper, everything rounds out super nice. The taste had a sticky sweet flavor rolling over the light breadiness and bringing in a nice semi-spiced flavoring underneath. There’s a sweet sticky aftertaste with a quick little spiced sweet finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a nice sessionability about it. Carbonation is light and pretty good allowing the sweet breadiness and light spices stick to my tongue nicely. Overall, this was a really nice saison, semi-dry that I would love to have again.

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Photo of erk0607
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look: Great for a saison... straw yellow with a bubbly, soft white head, no visible effevesence
Smell: A bit yeasty from what I can tell, but I can't smell much due to a cold...
Taste: Unique... somewhat of a bitter take on a saison with the hop profile, enough so that it makes you stop and think, but not enough to turn you away
Feel: Full, foamy, decent carbonation... fits the bill nicely.
Overall: No frills, farmhouse ale with a bitter backbone to support it. It would be interesting to pair with a sweeter pasta like a vodka sauce.

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erk0607 from Colorado, May 29, 2017
Photo of Obake21
4.36/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is a very good beer. Pours with a good head from the flaked wheat and is a light yellow color that is slightly hazy. It has tons of bubbles that is refreshing. The malt and hops blend nicely. The hops just come through to make things interesting and give it a lemony kick at the end, but still very much a Farmhouse ale with lots of wheat/malt on the front.

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Obake21 from Virginia, May 20, 2017
Photo of JamFuel
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear yellow, with a low, but dense, foam.

Smell is a bit funky, with yeast, apricot and a bit of pear chipping in.

The taste is really good, starts of yeasty with some hints of smoked sausage and apricot. Some funk and booze join the party, and the whole thing is closed out with a nice soft hoppy bitterness.

Medium bodied, less carbonated than most Euro versions.

I really liked this. It seemed like a veru American take on a classsic European style, in a good way. Lots of nuances playing well together, a treat to drink.

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JamFuel from Sweden, May 16, 2017
Apex Predator from Off Color Brewing
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 1037 ratings