Saison | Boulevard Brewing Co.

very good
230 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co.
Missouri, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Rio on 03-01-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 230 | Ratings: 284
Photo of mikesgroove
4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another new boulevard I was able to try over the last week. This one was served chilled and poured into a pint glass, consumed on 02/07/2010.
The pour was very good for the style. Nice light, golden amber in color with a good sized head of white creeping up and over the top of the glass. Settling down gently we are left with some decent side glass lace and a nice rocky and cratered top. Aroma is light, earthy with nice notes of grain and hints of clove and banana. Warming brings out touches of pears, a light bit of peach and a nice peppery aroma that seems to pick up as it warms. Soft and subtle carbonation lead the way here, really just nicely done I have to admit. Perfect balance between the light body and the warm, subtle nature of the saison. Nice dry finish is loaded down with light fruit notes and a subtle and easy warming leaves it all but forgotten after a few moments.
In a world of big one offs and huge style differences this was a welcome change. I really enjoyed the warmth and easy drinking nature a high recommendation.

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Photo of brownbeer
4.22/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy gold-orange with a pillowy white head.

Yeasty nose with orange, banana, and rose petals. Clean, bold, and distinct.

Earthy yeast with a nice hint of funk on the palate. It has a solid pale malt character with a peppery hop finish. I wouldn't mind if it were a bit drier for this style.

It's a shame this is being discontinued, though you can't deny Tank 7.

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Photo of hobojon
4.65/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750ml corked bottle in tulip

Aroma- sweet fruit, ripe apple and pear. malty sweet and simple. spicy "saaz" hop aroma. delicate clean hops and malt. some funk, mellow.

App- large white creamy foam. 1" foam stays awhile. clear. golden in color

Taste- spicy (high carb at first). sweet pils, hops (spicy as well), funky. sweet but dry finish. hoppy and resinous but balanced. coriander, ginger but subtle. complex malt- wheat/bready and delicate. refreshing acids ad subtle funk but very clean. some citrus.

Mouth- high carb. dry. some alc in throat. resinous. creamy.

Overall- really good, but not as refined as it could be. best american example of saison. compares to saison dupont (I opened a saison dupont after finishing this beer)

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Photo of fjordhook
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a light golden color, fluffy head. Opaque in body, very similar to a hefeweizen. Smells that are dominated with orange from what I can tell. Taste has got a nice carbonation in it combined with the citrus flavors. Had a very smooth finish, was not overpowering at all. I was surprised, this beer reminded me of a hefeweizen. It was my first time trying this style so I was caught a little off guard.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden straw color with a large white head. The aroma is a mix of yeast with some citrus, mainly oranges and lemons. The flavor is similar with a slight funk mixed in with the citrus and yeast. Dry finish. Thin body and medium carbonation.

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Photo of AdmiralDiaz
3.67/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 5

Poured from bomber to pint glass. Huge white head that get very rocky and has great retention and lacing. Smells very weakly of yeast and light citrus. Taste is the same, its real but tasty. Mouthfeel is very plain and weakly carbonated. Since its so light its extremely drinkable.

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Photo of afausser
4.14/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter and shared with CrellMoset

A: Pours a pretty, hazy golden yellow, reminding me a bit of a golden delicious apple (though slightly darker). Very little head, which quickly disappears, and very little movement from carbonation bubbles. Sparse lacing and little wisps of white foam on top.

S: White grapes and green apples predominate the nose, as well as a bit of citrus juice and some nice yeasty notes that play well in the background with slight spice, and as it warms, black pepper. There's a bit of a grassy, floral hay-like scent as it warms, and a sour note comes out nicely into the blend. Less barnyard-y than in the taste, but light and crisp. It starts out about average but is actually very nice and funky the more it warms, and even more as it's paired with gouda.

Taste: Light and at first hard to get a definite reading on. At first, there are slight hints of lemon peel and apples, though it's fairly dry as opposed to juicy. There's also a musty, funky taste that dominates--though not quite a full blown barnyard horse-hair/saddle leather taste, and a slight sour green apple note plays well with this. Finishes with a bitter hoppy aftertaste. Gets stronger as it warms--funkier and the sour apples also come out a lot more, and you start to get a taste of the malty sweetness, though that is very much in the background. The hoppy, spicy black pepper aftertaste makes itself quite present as it's drunk, as well as notes of vanilla and maple syrup blending into the taste in general. Gets much nicer as it warms and tastes predominantly like apple juice--and oddly enough, at this point, less funky than the smell with the earth, leather, and must in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and refreshing at first, and very nicely done, light carbonation. Will see as it warms. Light and dry in general. A ton of tiny bubbles make it almost fizzy in nature, but it never feels abrasive as you drink.

Drinkability: Low ABV, smooth, and highly drinkable, especially as it warms. Here's a warning though: at first, the taste had me about ready to give up on it. Don't!

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.82/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL corked and caged bottle, batch S8053, courtesy of hooliganlife (if I recall correctly). Thanks to a great trader who hooked me up with most of this series. Poured in to a large snifter, as it was the only even quasi-appropriate class I could find.

Appearance: Pours a very slightly hazed - courtesy of a nice yeast kick in the bottom of the bottle - golden orange, a fairly standard Saison hue, with an uncharacteristically sparse amount of very fine but well-dispersed carbonation. Perhaps the lack of carbonation is a result of the age of the bottle - I've had this one for a bit - though I would imagine, what with being bottle conditioned and all, this one would be a little more effervescent. The relative lack of effervescence leads the initial one-finger of untarnished ivory white head to fade relatively quickly, again fairly uncharacteristic of the style. Only a thin, spongy collar and a light, wispy surface dusting remain. Lacing is also sparse, not what you want for a sticky, bold saison, with only a few trailing runs of lacing standing a chance.

Aroma: Perhaps this beer's best characteristic. It's a little straightforward, but fairly pleasant - a slightly sweet but pale pilsner foundation for strong orange and spicy green hop notes, some faint yeasty nuttiness, and a few stray fruit esters. It's simple, but has strength in its simplicity.

Taste: Quite on the dry side, with a very pale, almost biscuity underpinning, again perhaps because of the slight amount of age on this one - it tastes like the yeast have been busy. The simplicity and dryness of the foundation lets the remainder of this beer's repertoire shine through, though. Well, not shine, really, as there's not too terribly much else going on here - a very grassy, hay-like hop note, slight hop bitterness, very few yeast fruit overtones (only some orange and lemon citrus and some slight green apple), and a few spices, mostly white pepper and the obligatory cloves, giving the slightest graham cracker fakeout. It's borderline 3.5 territory, really.

Mouthfeel: The paltry carbonation again rears its head here. Fortunately, the body isn't thick - as I mentioned, this one has a really high attenuation and nearly no residual sugar - so it doesn't come across as thick or cloying, but the body is of a fairly hearty consistency, and when the slight effervescence does come through, it's a little uneven. Unfortunate.

Drinkability: This beer is ... well, it's not very good. I wanted to like it a lot, because I absolutely loved the Saison w/ Brett - easily one of my top 20 beers ever, and I'd like someone on the street for another bottle. Unless they're readily available, in which case that would be a gross overreaction, but I don't live in their distribution area so I wouldn't know. At 6.8%, it didn't really matter terribly that it wasn't amazing, and I managed to finish most if not at all of it. So, either:

* This bottle wasn't terribly good - it was old, it was a bad batch, etc.; or
* The Brett addition does absolutely wonders for this beer, the equivalent of extreme and radical plastic therapy

I don't know which it is, and I hope it's the former. On the other hand, though this beer isn't "good," it's also not bad, so I wouldn't also be surprised if the answer was the second. Either way, it's perhaps worth one try - Boulevard on the whole is a fantastic brewery - so if the price is right, maybe it'll be more up your alley.

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Photo of bump8628
4.46/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750 ml corked and caged bottle.

Pours into a pilsener-type glass a rich golden color with an orange tinge and a luxurious white, fluffy head that clumps and sticks all over the glass.

Yeast derived spice (clove and coriander) and tropical fruit jump out on the nose along with some hop spice.

The taste is where this beer really stands out. Tropical fruits and peppery spice and a nice earthy element take center stage. Spicy hops and cork round it out. It has some of the earthy elements that wild yeast often contribute, but I know this beer has developed these on its own without their aid. Rustic is a word that really describes it well. The finish is properly dry with some rounding bitterness.

I really love this beer. It's the closest to the classic Belgian examples (like Saison Dupont) that I've found stateside. I know others favor the bigger, bolder, higher ABV examples these days, but I like that this one stays in line with the original intention of this beer style, which is refreshing, drying, and farmhouse-esque. I've heard it's being replaced with the Tank 7, which is a travesty in my opinion, but the majority has spoken. This one will be sorely missed by me.

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Photo of sjccmd
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pale golden yellow with a large fluffy white head that fades pretty rapidly, but lacing is fairly sticky.

Smells spicy/citrusy, perfume like. Flowers, lemon zest, with a good amount of Belgian yeastiness.

Lemon zest, spices rounded off with sweet bread malts in the taste. Finish is fairly dry. Not as spicy and citrusy as the Tank 7.

The mouthfeel is soapy, sparkly, and slick.

Nice and refreshing. After trying both this and Tank 7 fairly close together, I'll support Boulevard's decision to replace this with Tank 7. They're pretty similar, but Tank 7 seems more amped up.

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Photo of nickd717
4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle picked up at Argonaut Wine & Liquor in Denver during GABF. Shared with Sandstone and each of our girlfriends on New Years Eve. Big props to these two awesome ladies for putting up with our ridiculous beer obsessions.

Pours a hazy golden color with a large, lasting, foamy white head.

Aroma is yeasty with pale malt, citrus, floral hops, and spices.

Flavor is also very yeasty, similar to Saison - Brett in a way, but lacking the brett obviously. Pale malt, herbal notes, floral hops, lemon and orange zest, and spice, maybe a little pepper.

Dry and medium-light on the palate with fairly prickly carbonation. Crisp and refreshing, and very drinkable. Overall this is a very good saison.

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Photo of 7thstreetbrewery
4.65/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled this at the Boulevard brewery on a hot August day, it was ambrosia! Silky mouthfeel, poured like a champagne and was semi cloudy. Some fine ales have a "halo" type haze when looked at in the right light, this one had it. Everything was in perfect balance, the malt, citrus, some tartness. Since then I have purchased a couple 750 ml bottles and they have almost the same characteristics as the brewery draw, just not as "silky" in the mouth for some reason. Buy it with confidence!

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Photo of jwc215
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to hwwty4 for this!

750 ml cage-corked bottle, poured into wide-mouth glass, as suggested on the label:

Pours hazed/clouded golden yellow with a rich head that lasts most of duration before becoming wispy and leaves trailing lacing sticking to the glass.

The smell is fruity - lemon, orange peel and some banana - with a tang. There's a bready, grassy/barnyardy funk touch.

The taste is sweet becoming tart fruitiness finishing with an herbal dryness. Fruity and bready with a touch of honey/graininess and grassiness throughout. There's a hint of black peppery alcohol in the aftertaste.

It is effervescent, creamy and fuller end of light-bodied.

Thirst quenching and fruity - but not overly fruity. Nice earthy/barnyardy funky touch. This is a well-made, refreshing saison. Especially nice for a brewery that doesn't really specialize in Belgian-style beers. They nailed the style nicely. An enjoyable saison, to say the least!

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Photo of Richardberg
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - poured into a Chimay goblet. Hazy yellow/straw, moderate cream head, not much retention but laces ok and foams up.

S - yeast, brett, pepper, bright zesty hops

T - pretty bitter for a saison, somewhat watery, bit of spice

M - medium body, average carbonation, finishes a little dry

D - about average for a 6%

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Photo of drpimento
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty darn good effort at a saison. Approaches the Belgians. Poured with a nice large off white foamy frothy head and lots of lace. Color was a light, slightly hazy amber. Aroma was malty, lemon, a little sweet tart. Great body and carbonation. Real easy drinking beer. Finish is good. Not quite as complex as the better Belgians, but pretty good.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.28/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle.

A - Pours a beautiful strong golden color with orange hues. It also has a nice medium dense white head that is about 1 inch tall. It recedes at a slow pace leaving some nice sticky lace.

S - Very complex nose!! WOW! Simply amazing is all I can say. Very floral, nice clove and coriander spiciness. Mild hints of hops on the back end add a very attractive citrusy and piney note.

T - Nice malty beginning with great carbonation. The malt sweetness comes in hidden and then flourishes once it hits the middle of your tongue. Nice clove is also present and recedes back after a nice dry finish from some hops. Very good beer.

M - Nice and medium bodied beer with great CO2 and balance.

D - Refreshing and normal ABV give this high marks.

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Photo of Damian
4.88/5  rDev +22%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Drank from a 750 ml/1 pint, 9.4 fluid ounce bottle
Batch number: S8254
Served in a tulip

The beer poured a near crystal clear, straw yellow color with an impressive bright white, super foamy and bubbly, three-finger head. Eventually the head faded to a thick dollup of froth. Huge chunks of lacing stuck all along the glass.

The aroma was signature saison, except on steroids. Crisp and fresh with a powdery, distinctly Belgian yeast note. Citrusy and slightly herbal. Grassy, saaz style hops were also noticeable. A hint of funkiness came through as well.

The taste was quite similar to the aroma. Remarkably crisp and smooth. Citrusy with strong notes of clove, coriander and orange peel. Semi-sweet and tangy. Slightly musty. Spicy and peppery in the center. The ultra-clean finish was crisp, smooth and quite lemony with just a kiss of grassy, earthy hops for balance. A gentle warming from the alcohol appeared as the beer opened up.

The mouthfeel was spot-on for the style. Silky smooth with a crisp, lively, velvety, Champagne-like effervescence. Light and sprightly yet not at all airy on the palate.

Drinkabilitry was simply off the charts. Not only was this beer amazingly smooth and refreshing, but it was packed to the brim with flavor. I could drink this all day long and not get tired of it.

I have sampled both the Saison and the Saison-Brett by Boulevard and I definitely prefer the former. The Saison may not be one of the most exciting beers I have ever tried, yet it is definitely one of the most well made. In fact, I found this beer to be nearly flawless in every sense. While many may disagree, I feel this is the new benchmark for the style.

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Photo of mikeborglum
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml corked bottle; citrus, floral, earthy aroma, cloudy, golden color, white foam with good lacing, lightly sour, lightly bitter, thin feel, medium body, soft carbonation, long finish, I'm not familiar with saisons but this was a nice drinkable beer. I like this whole Smokestack series of brews from Boulevard.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.83/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at a tasting on 10/23, from notes.

Pours a cloudy yellow gold with 2 finger pillowy foam, subsiding to a very sturdy cap. Great retention and lacing.

Smells of lemon zest and flowers in a countryside breeze. Expressive yeast character. White pepper and other spices. Herbal. Zesty citrus. Vibrant.

Tastes of crackery malts lightly played over by yeast characters described in the aroma. Excellently dry spicy finish.

Prickly carbonation, definitely on par for the style. Good drinkability and although this was a nice brew, I have to say I prefer Saison-Brett.

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Photo of Josievan
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden yellow. Th head is monstrous, but this monster is inviting, like a fluffy pillow.

Smell: You've got your barnyard smells, tartness, spices

Taste: Mellower than the smell, but extremely satisfying. Just a tad bit of tartness, bready yeast tastes. Utterly refreshing.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, but carbonation is crisp enough to have that refreshing characteristic.

Drinkability: Alcohol is completely hidden. I shared this bottle with a friend, but I could have easily drank the whole 750 ml myself. I'm left wanting more.

Notes: This is only the second saison I've had. I can see how it could be considered rather low-key for a farmhouse ale, seeing as it's only mildly funky, but I still love it. I'm disappointed to read that Boulevard is discontinuing it, but I will certainly seek out it's replacement, as well as other saisons.

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Photo of Reaper16
4.23/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer is not long for this Earth. Boulevard is going to replace this recipe with year-round bottling of their superior Tank 7 Saison. I thought I'd enjoy (and review) this beer while I still could.

750mL bottle served into a Bou... oh, all my Smokestack series glasses are dirty? I guess I'll use this Westmalle chalice; at least its clean.

Pours a hazy yellow, like some wheat got blended into a mimosa. Its not so cloudy that you can't see the tremendous, bubbly effervescence. I don't think that a goblet like this Westmalle glass is the optimal choice for a farmhouse ale, but my gosh does this beer look pretty in such a pretty glass. As per usual with the Smokestack Series, the head is fluffy and quite large. This white mass was restrained (relative to other Smokestack Series offerings) at three fingers, though the head retention and lacing is out-of-this-world.

I don't know how old this bottle is; it might have half a year on it. The first aromas to be discerned after you get used to the initial cloud of "farmhouse" are the white bread of the malts and the peppercorn spices. Banana and light whisps of pear accentuate the pepper. There isn't much of a hoppy aroma (which would be surprising to drinkers expecting this to taste a lot like Boulevard's Saison-Brett). Just a touch of hay rounds out and softens the smells. This is far from the most complex saison I've had with respect to aroma but its well-executed and enjoyable.

This saison is a lot brighter on the palate than in the nose. An immediate lemon-lime flavor coats the tongue. Its not sharp like fresh citrus juice though, more of the softer side of those bright flavors. Kind of like lemon or key lime pie filling. The malt flavors are mostly bready. Not toasted or anything, but like crusts of a thick, French white bread. This saison is understated in barnyard funk compared other versions of the style. There is still a considerable element of farmhouse aromatics and damp hay here, and the hay flavors especially go well with the lemon/lime flavor profile. Farmhouse Ale fans used to Saison Dupont or Fantome would call this an approachable saison, but I just call it tasty.

Boulevard Saison has the effervescence that all good saisons have. That carbonation leads to a mouthfeel that isn't prickly but soft, yet still fully capable of lifting heavy food flavors from the tongue (saisons are notorious for being one of the most versatile and effective beers to pair with food). You might question my maximum score for drinkability. I must tell you that this is one of the most drinkable beers I've ever had. The "scrubbing bubbles," the rounded flavors and the lessened degree of funkiness make for a beer that goes quickly. This whole 750mL is mine, all mine and I usually prefer to share 750mL bottles with someone.

I'm really sad to see this beer go. Its such a good choice to pair with a meal and it drinks perfectly fine by its lonesome. I LOVE the saison style and this is a fine if unique representative of it to a lot of people in Boulevard's distribution who may not have heard of farmhouse ales before. This beer is being replaced by a more complex saison in Tank 7. Tank 7 is an upgrade over this version (in fact, my head says this is a B+ beer but the scoring system says A -), but I say the more good saisons out there to buy the better. This is a beer that isn't purchased enough. Pick up a bottle before its gone forever and see for yourself.

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Photo of callmescraps
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Was tempted by this last time I hit the store, then I saw it on sale. It must have been fate. It pops with great vigor.

Appearance - Light straw in color. Several inches of big foamy head. Lots of lacing, just coats the glass. Very clear.

Smell - A nice hay, farmyard funkiness. Some nice yeastiness. A light citrus and lemon, with a nice hint of coriander and spice. A great biscuity malt as well. Touch of banana. Quite nice.

Taste - Light and crisp on the tongue. Definitely the light lemon and citrus. The biscuit and yeastiness are also present. The finish has a lot of the yeast, and a little herbal bitter note. However, it's a little thin. Just a little bland. It's nice, but almost too subtle. Very dry. Definitely thin on the funk.

Mouthfeel - Thin, definitely. The carbonation is a touch light as well.

Drinkability - Goes down easy. Very easy. This score would be higher, but it's not interesting enough that I'm dying to have more.

This is a very nice, light, flavorful bev. But it's just too light, and thin. I don't want it to be over-the-top aggressive, but just a little less passive.

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Photo of jeffthecheff
4.21/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split this bottle at a 10/23 tasting. I'm not too familiar with the saison style, but I loved this beer.

Poured into a white wine glass, is has a deep gold color with complete haze. The head is big and fluffy with bubbles that die down to only islands.

Aroma is lemony, flowery, and with a yeasty fruitiness. Intense and fresh. It smells like nature. Maybe spring? I'm loving this.

Malt and hop flavor is kind of minimal here, with fresh, complex yeastiness being the highlight. There is a good amount of bitterness accentuated by the dryness. The pale malt base has a crackery aspect to it. The yeasty flavors have both sweetness and tartness, like a lemon. It also has some spiciness that reminds me of lemon-pepper. The finish is short, snappy, and very dry. I could go for me.

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Photo of Boto
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle: This one pours a cloudy, straw yellow color. It has a large frothy head on it and leaves a good amount of lacing. Nice aroma. Grassy, floral, yeasty, some lighter fruits. The taste is pretty decent also. Definitely a dry taste to it. Grassy, yeast, malts, some lighter fruits. A nice brew.

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Photo of rtepiak
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a less than of one of the best saisons breweries in the country. very formal. a very consistent saison which touchs on all the right qualities. a nice saaz pilnser hop with a very mild funk.... very mild. but still not american. there is some fruit citrus to go with the skunk and prominent quality of honey/pollen. light bread... more on the peppery side.

had it again about a month later... licorice really comes forth. not much fruit but a fresher bottle. some herbal qualities. nice body... zest bitter finish of young green oranges. simple, proper form but not very versed in palate possibilities... may be the lower abv.

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Saison from Boulevard Brewing Co.
4 out of 5 based on 284 ratings.
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