Side Project Brewing

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Belgian Saison
Ranked #207
Ranked #3,799
4.1 | pDev: 7.32%
Side Project Brewing
Missouri, United States
Notes: A tribute to the farmhouse table beers, Grisette was fermented in neutral Chardonnay barrels and then aged for 6 months with a delicate blend of our Brettanomyces strains. No acidity, a bigger hop presence and a low ABV, rounded body.
Reviews: 32 | Ratings: 291 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of SierraNevallagash
4.49/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A more-than-words thank you to Bobby for this one.

750ml bottle - poured into a Chianti stem at cellar temp (52ish)

Pours a mostly clear, dark straw hue, with lots of streaming effervescence. A finger of white foam appears, before receding to a nude dancing top. Gold. It's a beautiful color.

Nose: On the nose, there's lots of barnyard and funky notes. Classic grainy/spicy/saison ester aromas. Lots of grassy notes. There is definitely the presence of white oak, lending an almost oaky chardonnay character to it. Very faint floral hop notes, a hint of wildflower honey*, and a subtle sharpness, both lacto and acetic in nature - leaning lacto.

Palate: Now this is a proper grisette. The palate is first met by an initial lemon pulp sourness, along with an actual lemon flavor, and then you get some spicy, grassy, ester notes - cardamom, peppercorn, and that fresh cut green grassy note. Return of the lemon. Enter Oak: Stage Palate. After the second zing of the lemon sourness, oak starts to come into play, bringing with it butter, vanilla, grassy funk, lots of farmy notes, and then some incredibly subtle aged hop bitterness, and even a crusty cracker hint. A savory note. There's a...I don't won't to say "brine" (think Islay scotch), but this sort of bright, shiny, mineral note coming through towards the finish. That mineral note is such a grisette thing, and really brings it all together. Onto the second glass, I'm also getting faint notes of very floral honey. I'll add that to the nose.

Mouthfeel/Body: The mouthfeel is exceptionally lively. Bright, loud, and rambunctious. The effervescence is energetic, and it dances passionately but quickly over the tongue, like a young heated couple enveloped in a fiery tango. Prickly? Yes. Sparkly? Yes? Seltzer....yeah. But you want that in a grisette. This is a light, drinkable table beer that is DESIGNED to be thirst quenching. This whole style was born as a good, clean, low ABV hydration replenishment, when clean water was a rarity (look up the history, it's fascinating) and that is exactly what this beer is doing. It's easy to drink. It's rhirst,quenching. It's delicious.

Edit: And my god, does it pair with food. Had it the next night with grilled salmon...mwah!

Overall: I honestly think they nailed this one. I don't often find a grisette I thoroughly enjoy, and yet, it's one of my favorite styles of beer. That's how good it can be. A bad one sucks, but man, if a brewery can nail a good, classic grisette, then they have some amazing potential. Grisettes have such nuance, complexity, and hidden beauty in their delicate character, and one heavy-handed slip up, and you've ruined it. Not this one. Some of the best beers I've ever had are grisettes, and I now include this. This is an amazing, classic grisette that Side Project absolutely nailed. I can't drink many 750mls myself, but this? Not a problem. Excuse my while I return to the remaining 450mls. I'll see you in an hour.

World class.

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Photo of brentk56
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Arrives with a most impressive head, billowing at three fingers over the hazy goldenstraw colored liquid; copious lacing

Smell: Considerable barnyard aromatics with lemongrass, hay and mineral tones along with pear fruit

Taste: Pear and hay forward, with a lemongrass, somewhat spicy aspect building; slightly vinous, in the middle, with a stony mineral quality in the finish

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: A very interesting range of flavors here for a table beer

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Photo of REVZEB
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured golden with decent carbonation and white foam. Smell has lemon, funk, hay, grass, and a hint of horseblanket, overall springy and pleasant. Taste features more sour oak and flowers, but otherwise same elements as smell. Well crafted, highly drinkable and pleasant. Perfect for spring time.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This one pours a light straw yellow color, with a big fluffy head, and lots of lacing.

This smells like mineral-esque funk, grassy hops, pear, white wine, and funky hay.

There's a lot going on here, even though the ABV is quite low. I get some grassy funk and lots of grassy hops, a little bit of white wine, some hay, and a clean refreshing mineral character- like water from an old spring.

This is pretty light bodied, but not thin, with a great level of drinkability, and a higher level of carbonation.

Even though this could be considered a "lower level" Side Project bottle, it's pretty special.

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Photo of Sabtos
3.71/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Milky pale yellow with a thick white fuzz.

Smell is funky hay and cheese with grapefruit and orange in the background.

Semi-tart, light flavors of lemon, hay and horse blanket play in a big, light, airy expanding carbonation as it swallows semi-dry.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Beavertown Extravaganza. Yellow color with no head. Aroma is mostly yeasty with hay and light floral notes. Taste is slightly tart with some wood barrel notes.

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Photo of FFFjunkie
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look is a cloudy golden straw. Pours with bright head that immediately diminishes to nothing.

Aroma is slight tartness, wheat or hay, hint of funk and a touch of wine.

Taste follows nose. Wine opens up as the beer warms. Quite nice.

Feel is surprisingly fuller than most of the style.

Overall a very delicate and complex beer. Glad I got the opportunity to try this one.

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Photo of von_kaiser
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

blend #4....cloudy, light-golden-yellow appearance....funk on the scent....crisp funky flavor....medium body feel for the style. solid all around farmhouse ale.

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Photo of ManapuaMan
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Effervescent, crisp, tart. Just a beautiful beer all around. Straw gold out of the bottle - lively stream of bubbles floating up to the soapy white head. Aroma of grape must, green apple and oak. Kiss of light lemon, very light (but perceptible) funk, white wine tannins, grape skin, must and green apple. The effervescence is present throughout making it a lively and crisp sip every time. Delicate beer that brings all aspects of its composition to bear with an incredibly low ABV. Easy to enjoy the bottle in one sitting.

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Photo of yesterdayfaraway
4.02/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L: pours a clear yellow with a finger of white head that fades fast. Huge carbonation
S: wheat, straw, Belgian yeast.
T: Starts sweet what and finishes tart.
F: high carbonation, tiny bubbles the whole way down. Like champagne.
O: light and refreshing.

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Photo of Scott17Taylor
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm honestly a little disappointed given side projects reputation. It was just nothing that would stand out. It's tart and refreshing with some white wine notes. Not much else. I'll have to give them another chance, this can't be the best they can do.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.54/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Blend #4.

A - Cloudy gold body, thin white head, minimal head.

S - The nose has mild funk, some fruit, lemons foremost.

T - Follows the nose, with lemon curd, pineapple and peach comes forward, a touch of wood, a mild spike of acid in the close.

M - Very pleasant, full for the ABV and style, with strong carbonation.

O - Rock solid.

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Photo of larryi86
4.34/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Thank you bstyle for this
750 ml bottle, blend 4, poured into a teku

A- A hazy golden straw color with a two finger white head.

S- Tart, some lemons, pears, oak, great funk, floral, some peppercorns.

T- Tart, lemons/citrus, light malts, pears, slightly floral, oak, some barnyard funk.

M- Smooth, light, crisp, dry and refreshing.

O- A very tasty low ABV farmhouse ale. This is right up there with Hill Farmstead Clara and Tired Hands Ourison as far as tart low ABV farmhouse ales go.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

In the footsteps of the table beer of Belgium follow the Side Project team as they embark upon a session ale of character, authenticity, reprise and complexity that transport the senses right to the farmlands of those low countries.

Grisette's turbulent and billowing appearance explodes upon the pour. Like sparkling champagne, the streaming carbonation builds a rocky, loose and lacy lather. Its pepper, funk and fauna carry and earthen and fruity perfume with soft dough, woods and wine following suit. Tropical, citrus and orchard fruit favors are enshrined in a short and bready sweetness of grain and honeysuckle.

The ale erupts on the middle palate as its bubbly action pushes the beer off of the tongue and ushers in a fast, clean and racy set of flavors that seem to float above the tastebuds. Its whimsy of fruit and spice mingle with pineapple, lemon, orange, apple, pear and white grape intertwine in a dance with white pepper, clove, curry, mint and coriander. Lightly oaken in finish, the beer's wine influence shows as the playful acidity of chardonnay carries a plummy, grape-like, cider-like musk.

Peppery and moderately bitter in finish, the beer closes dry, crisp and highly refreshing. Its spice balance trails with a light grip of grass, pepper and hay in the throat as an afterglow of light bread, balsa and damp burlap echoes briefly thereafter- ideally suited for Thai cuisine, mussels, or simply to quench the thirst.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

this is desert island beer for me, a nice grainy liquid bread sort of base saison, nice and low on the abv, but lots of body and texture, and flavored by all three elements. this really is fantastic stuff from side project, even though its some of their rarer releases that get all the hype, this one is just as good for me. batch or blend number 3 from what i gather, its a little hazy but very approachable looking, soft and inviting, with a puffy white head with great retention. maybe some rye in here? oats? more than just pale and pils type barley malt and wheat, a little peppery bite, maybe from the yeast, but possibly some rye malt too. the yeast is amazing, fully bretty, a little belgian, soft and fruity, white grape for sure, apricot, crab apple, and then the oak at the end, which is pretty mild in terms of flavor, serving more here as a mellowing agent and a vehicle for fermentation. really impressive beer, as much flavor as you can get into something this low in alcohol, rich on the grain front but bone dry, floral hoppy in the end with a little white wine note, some wood, a lot of delicate fruity funk from the mature brett, and en expressive level of carbonation that makes this positively sing on the palate. one of my new favorite styles, and one of the best takes on it i have seen in some time. not to be missed...

edit: just had a blend four and a blend five basically side by side, which both seemed a little less mature to me than the three reviewed above, puckery still though, and somewhat less nuanced than i remember from the above, especially the five, less funk more sour there, lemony and even approaching harsh on the acidity. the four has a ton of woody depth and the wine character to it, more of the grain layers appreciable too, while the five just seemed sort of citric and basic. its neat the variation between some of the blends, and i think there is value in trying as many of them as possible! i feel fortunate to have been able to interact with this one so much. like all side project beers it seems, this one is tending more sour in recent editions...

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Blend #3 on tap at Side Project. Hazy pale yellow body. Smell is lemon, citrus, oak, and a strong brett presence. Taste is lightly acidic up front with some lemon. Behind that is light cracker grain and some sweeter malts. Citrus. Hay. And then brett and bitterness take over in the back end. Light body with medium carbonation. It starts off as a very delicate beer and then the brett is a blunt finish.

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Photo of tempest
3.4/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

Something sulfury, a little too much like a fart, comes out of the aroma when you give this a swirl. The beer taste lovely, and reminds me of Orval for the mild, spicy Brett, but that smell would keep me from getting another bottle. Most of this beer is fantastic, but it's a tough aroma to get over.

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Photo of Gus_13
4.11/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Light golden and a touch hazy in color. Really nice fluffy white head.

Nose was grainy and rustic. Touch of the Brett C comes out as well. Smell super refreshing.

Flavor followed that nose. Little tart, but otherwise very clean with hints of lemon. Super easy to drink.

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 1 courtesy of Matt. Thanks man! Had this right after a SdF B2. Pours hazy yellow colored with a big fluffy white head. Aroma is big Brett and some light lemon zest notes, some hay and wheat, even some light German hops left on the nose. Flavor is lightly sweet wheat malts with a perfect balance of dry funky Brett, a bit of lemon zest, nice. Very light bodied but an incredible amount of flavor for only 4% ABV. Crisp and clean, easy drinker, plus carbonation. Continue to be thoroughly impressed by everything Side Project. Really among the best in the world.

Batch 4 from foedres now. Still legit.

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Photo of emerge077
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was the second best of 3 house drafts at Side Project Cellar.
Served in a small stemmed taster glass.

Pale gold with a light haze, sturdy layer of foam that was steadfast. Drippy lacing in the glass and lasting head retention.

Aroma was light but pleasant, dry with some rustic yeast notes, slight minerality, dried fruit, grains.
Taste was similar, light and fairly understated, yeast is the dominant thing. Brett seems fairly restrained, not funky really. Mild fruit and a bone dry finish. Well carbonated and light bodied, crisp very easy drinking. Seems best paired with a meal.

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Photo of ArkyVaughan
4.27/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On draft at the Side Project Cellar. I really enjoyed this Grisette. Very balanced with a clean flavor profile. Not quite at the level of Hill Farmstead Clara, but very close.

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Photo of Vonerichs
3.44/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear pale light yellow. Great fluffy head with excellent retention with cascading lace.

Funky aroma, but has an odd vegetal scent like steamed broccoli.

Brett, no doubt. Light lemon, alka seltzer.

Thin and crisp, high carbonation.

It lacks flavor and has a weird aroma. Not for me.

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Photo of popery
3.87/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The beer is yellow-tan and quite cloudy. Big white head. Seems like solid enough retention. Some lacing, etc. The aroma has a big fresh grain flavor. Light and very pleasant. Some wine barrel. A tiny bit of band aid/medicinal flavor. A little bit of funk. Taste is light and fresh. A bit more of that Belgian medicinal flavor. Mild oak. Soft vinous note. Fairly dry.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On draft at the Side Projects cellar. Served a half-pour in a stemmed taster glass (6oz pour).

A translucent, pale, and almost colorless beer with an egg white head. Head leaves a thin cap on the beer and better than average spotty lacing. Light grains and light funk. Very delicate beer in regards to flavor and aroma. Tastes better than it smells and I would say that the aroma is kind of weak. Nice session beer with creamy carbonation and light crispness. Needless to say it is very drinkable. This was good, but HF Clara is a better beer of the same style.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.58/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Incredibly light beer that has loads of character. Apple skin and cracker. Quenching dryness and wonderful effervescence. Light body and carb highlight the beer.

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Grisette from Side Project Brewing
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 291 ratings