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Brooklyn Sorachi Ace | Brooklyn Brewery

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
91
outstanding
672 Reviews
Brooklyn Sorachi AceBrooklyn Sorachi Ace
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States | website

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is a saison featuring the rare Japanese-developed hop Sorachi Ace. The Sorachi Ace hop varietal is noted for its unique lemon zest/lemongrass aroma.

Added by rtepiak on 07-29-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
672
Ratings:
2,693
Avg:
4.09
pDev:
22%
 
 
Wants:
238
Gots:
672
For Trade:
10
User Reviews
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Reviews: 672 | Ratings: 2,693
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.26/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A steady pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip produces a voluminous, four-finger thick, pale tan colored head. The head has a ton of staying power, lots of lacing is left on the sides of my glass and the head forms a variegated, interesting surface as it slowly subsides. The beer is a hazy, straw / light gold hue that shows flashes of bright yellow when held up to the light. The aroma smells strongly of the hop influence; bright fruit notes of juicy-fruit gum, huge notes of freshly zested lemon peel, lemon pepper, a touch of basil and more of a herbaceous grassy note towards the finish serve as the initial focus. Dried hay and pale cracker like malt character serves as a very subtle backdrop to the hop character up front and becomes a touch more noticeable once you really start to spend a focused session of smelling the beer; the malt can never shake the hop character though and even in the finish is a bright citrus note that makes me think of lemon scented furniture cleaner. While the beer seems dry compared to an IPA, I can't really pinpoint any interesting yeast contributed aromatics in this beer; the nose is nice but I feel like I am missing out on some rustic yeast influence.

This is effervescent to say the least, the beer foams up quite well as it crosses the tongue, though it is not too highly carbonated. The beer feels very dry on the palate, though some of the fruity citrus notes contribute a perception of sweetness even if the malt character is quite dry. Cracker like grain notes and a touch of dried straw are joined by a malt roundness in the middle that is almost sweetness, but really just a malt fullness to the palate that keeps this from being overly thin. This has a very firm bitterness to it from the beginning of each sip (much of this is influenced by the peppery carbonation) and this remains through to the finish all the while being accentuated by the carbonic bite. The juicy hop character contributes notes of Meyer lemon, lightly sweetened lemon zest, a touch of floral tropical fruit character and some menthol notes that numb the tongue a bit. After shaking / swirling the beer to expel some of the carbonation the beer gets softer, with more of a fullness to the body (though still light and quaffable) and my first sip has me noticing some warming alcohol (though this seems to dissipate quickly). The hop character definitely has a certain furniture cleaner quality to it, while I wouldn't characterize it as bad; it might get to be a little much for me if I was drinking this over a long session. Perhaps some rustic phenolic character from the yeast helps to accentuate this character; in fact, after further reflection, I think that some clove and other phenolic notes from the yeast do in fact accentuate this character here. As the beer warms it picks up a touch of a medicinal character in the finish as well as getting spicy with peppery notes, a touch of spicy ginger and even a something a bit like a sage-like note 9this last being influenced by both the hops and the yeast character).

A nice hop focused Saison, which with time will likely become more noticeably fermentation driven; this is more due to the hop character fading, than the yeast character actually becoming greater over time though. I admit that I like this beer so much because I am a sucker for hoppy Saisons; in all honesty this could certainly use a touch more of a characterful yeast / fermentation influence, even though this is certainly in evidence here.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brooklyn Sorachi Ace, a farmhouse ale using the rare hop variety.

Pours a clear straw, bone white crackling head. Aroma of lemon juice and rind upfront. Alittle bit of spicy Belgian yeast with a bready aroma as well. In the flavor, a crisp biting lemony hop, some earthyness, champagne like in the finish. Belgian yeast in full force with must, pepper and mild pear notes. Super dry, aggressive carbonation. Mild doughy character, spice and a good helping of citrus, hop and funk. Overall, an interesting and unique brew with well rounded flavor. Worth trying.

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Photo of aasher
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a really, really nice honeycream gold in color with a two finger, billowing white poofy head. It looks great. The aromas are consist of citrus, lemon, grass/straw, yeast and spices. The flavors are very, very interesting. This is my first experience with Sorachi hops and I like the different aromas and flavors presented. The flavors are kind of funky. You get a lot of straw and tea leaves and it has a nice citrus, yeasty backbone. It's an interesting drink and pretty appealing. It drinks medium in body and has good carbonation. Overall it's a fine beer, an interesting one, and worth your while. I like this spin on a saison.

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Photo of yourefragile
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a tulip.

Pours a milky translucent pale golden color with a massive, fluffy rocky white head. Head has excellent retention and spongey sheets of lacing. Aroma is very grassy, earthy, zesty and lemony. Background of some candied sugars and spices, but something just isn't clicking for me with the nose. The flavor is also slightly off, with strong sweet notes from the champagne yeast and pale malts, and contrasting earthy, zesty, grassy hops without much bitterness from the Sorachi Ace. Mouthfeel is medium full, very soft with fine, light carbonation producing the expected clean dry finish. A grainy, yeast flavor also lingers in the finish detracting from my enjoyment of this. The flavors in this don't quite mesh as smoothly as hoped for, pulling down my opinion of this otherwise fine, unique beer.

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Photo of biegaman
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Brooklyn Sorachi Ace comes in a fairly grand bottle and, sure enough, has the swanky appearance to match: resplendent golden in colour, with vivacious bubbles and an ultra-plush head, this looks like it costs twice what it actually does (and it's certainly not cheap!) Pour in the last couple ounces, however, and it looks like a glass of oatmeal.

Corked and caged and re-fermented in the bottle like Champagne, Sorachi Ace also has a bouquet that lightly mimics and definitely rivals the vintage bubbly of a good house. Use of the same yeast has resulted in a hint of wet earth, strong breadiness and the usual orchard fruit notes, though hops have imparted plenty of bright citrus and green herb qualities.

Sorachi Ace has a character that is in many ways reminiscent of a Chardonnay left on lees. There are remarkably similar lemon and apple flavours and it has the full, creamy texture to boot. Seriously, I'd guess this was barrel-aged if I didn't know any better - there's even hints of vanilla and cedar that accompany citrus peel in the finish.

It's impressive that the beer can feel so rich in spite of such ultra-zippy, high-octane carbonation. Champagne bubbles tend to make for a lighter, sharper mouthfeel - which this largely does have - but there's still plenty of weight to this sucker. The hops also provide some uniquely savory notes in the form of dill and lemon verbena.

Sorachi Ace is exactly the kind of distinctive, high-quality offering you'd expect from a producer with the illustrious reputation of Brooklyn Brewery. It delivers good value and rolls tasty malts and exceptionally vibrant hoppiness into a very unique drinking experience. Nevermind trying to box this into 'Saison' or 'Belgian IPA' categories - this is it's own beer. And it's definitely worth grabbing.

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Photo of plaid75
4.23/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Waterfront, Brooklyn.

Poured a hazy light straw hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and very good lacing.

The smell featured a sweet lemon and robust yeast esters.

The taste consisted of a zesty lemon, light grainy malt and spicy yeast esters.

The mouthfeel was light and refreshing.

Overall a very nice summer saison. This beer should be made in bigger batches, bottled and promoted for summer.

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Photo of tone77
3.52/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy whiteish/golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of yeast, lemons. Taste is funky, yeasty, lemons, light hops. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a pretty good beer, but not as good as I expected.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Extremely interesting beer. I always like tasting a single hopped beer, and particularly when its such an interesting one as the Sorachi Ace hop. Pours a slightly cloudy, but glowing golden with a mousse-like head that sticks around and leaves some sticky lacing. Very lemony aromas, with particular emphasis on the zest- slightly bitter and oily, but with the bright, zingy essential aromas of the lemon. The taste is extremely complex. I can't put my finger on all the elements there, but the overall impression is of lemon meringue with a touch of pith mixed in with a zest accent on top. More pith than zest here, quite bitter, but in that particular pithy way, and with some creaminess on the finish. There is also a good deal of herbalness, but I can't put my finger on what herb(s) it reminds me of. Quenching and drying 9in the mouth, this is a Saison to contemplate.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.87/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ah, a 75 cl bottle with natural cork and steel cage always raises my expectations.

A: Pours straw-colored with an enormous white soapy head that sinks into decent lacings.

S: Spices; mostly pepper. Yeast Floral hops gives it citric notes. Sweet malt. Earthy.

T: Dry, very dry and bitter. Peppery. Lots of yeast. Grass and citric notes, lemon and lemon sezt. Malt is in the back. Kind of sour.

M: Refreshing as a Saison should be. Aftertaste is long and bitter, and even holds a little bit of lemon. Body is light and carbonation is rich.

O: A nice beer, but a little to dry and bitter for my taste when it comes to Saison.

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Photo of John_M
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Mahaffey's the other day.

The beer pours a striking gold color with good head retention and lacing. There is very active carbonation in this beer; not something I see all the time. I don't get a lot on the nose with this one, just some light honey and cracked pepper. Still, what's there is pretty nice. On the palate, this beer is pretty enjoyable. I get some lemon, orange and honey, all in a very light frame. There's almost a sweet ice tea flavor to this beer, that I quite like. The beer finishes nice and clean on the palate, with the alcohol well disguised.

This beer is very easy to drink, and makes a perfect warm summer's day beer. Quite nice.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 750mL corked & caged bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: light golden hue with a mild haze and a big, active effervescence. Head pours three fingers of frothy white foam. I like it!

Smell: light but enticing funkiness and sourness atop a sweet, chalky malt base. Not a lot of the hops seem to make it through the overall funk, but it's still pretty nice.

Taste: moderately funky flavor with less sourness than the aroma would indicate. Malt is nice and sweet and a fruity, somewhat piney character comes through which must be the hops. Overall, quite nice.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a huge carbonation and concomitant creaminess. Love it!

Overall: an interesting, tasty and refreshing saison. I will definitely try to have this again.

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Photo of weeare138
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a hazy ligt gold with a small white cap that slowly fades into a chunky head. Scattered lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of pumelo, lemon zest, herbs, cut grass, and shiitake mushrooms.
Taste is of the aromas with a sticky hoppy goodness and a fresh doughy flavor that makes for an intersting spin on a Belgian Pale.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, sticky, semi sweet, and gently herbal in the finish.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ah, the first beer of my US trip. For breakfast, no less. Nice, well presented "ace" bottle, corked and caged.

Pours a hazed and cloudy golden wheat colour, with a foamy and full head of white. Lacing is patchy, but sticky. Looks like it has some heft to the body, which is good. Nice fine carbonation. Overall, a very good looking saison.

Nose is zesty and sharp, but with organic overtones (ah, Saison funk and Sorachi Ace make a brutally good combination). Hints of coconut, lime, flax, raw wheat and linen. Although the citric Sorachi and the funky pepper Saison yeast characters sound like they would create a cacophony, in fact, they meld together into a creamy, smooth almost vanilla like combination, despite the fact you can still identify the individual spicy attributes. Great.

Taste is similar—quite smooth and creamy, but with a lift of citric acidity and a bite of organic bitterness on the back. Aftertaste gives off some of those tropical coconut flavours. Throughout, there's a raw, rustic funk, but the Sorachi characters seem to change the location to somewhere humid and Eastern.

Overall, a great beer, and a rather large and complex one. As it turns out, this goes somewhere very different from where I thought it might, which was a light, drinkable and refreshing brew—this is a big, and robustly interesting beer; one that should be sipped.

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Photo of corby112
3.16/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly cloudy pale golden yellow color with a half finger frothy white head that slowly settles into a thin lasting ring. Not much in the way of lacing.

Slightly earthy, spicy aroma with hints of peppery clove, ginger and something else I can't put my finger on. Crisp light fruit notes, mostly apple and pear along with a slight hop profile and subtle malt in the nose.

Lighter bodied with some earthy hops and zesty spice. Hints of pepper, ginger and corriander along with a slight metallic flavor which is kind of off putting. Slightly cloying with a long dry finish.

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Photo of Derek
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy, dirty straw with a huge white head, great retention, leaves a nice lace.

S: Marmalade, straw, leather, lemon and pineapple.

T: Pappaya, marmalade, mango, candied pineapple, solid bitterness, light leather, lemon grass, biscuity malt hint of dry earthyness.

M: Moderately full body is well-carbonated with a crisp finish.

D/O: An easy drinker for its weight, plenty of depth to the flavour, well-crafted.

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Photo of puboflyons
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the corked, caged bottle no. 0042. Sampled on December 23, 2013. I acquired this as a clearance bottle for $5.99 which I thought was a good deal since I hadn't had it before.

The pour is golden yellow with a white fizzy carbonated head that lingers longer than your typical glass of champagne.

Loads of sparkling grapes, lemon,. and other citrus on the nose intertwined mild roasted malts and a feint hop kick.

Light to medium body with a lot of carbonation that increases what I like refer to as the "belch factor." Yup, plenty of that going on.

The taste is parallels what I get on the nose with a significant lemon zest and citrus zing flavor, mildly toasted malts, and a tart yet dry finish. It is very much like champagne with that slight maltiness to remind me it is a beer.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a crystal clear pale yellow with a big white creamy head that last for a good bit. There is a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles that swirl to the surface.
S- The big bright hops are full of green lemons with a spearmint quality to them followed by a yellow apple saison yeast quality. This beer smells a bit like lemon dish soap in the finish and that aroma grows as the beer warms.
T- The taste of lemon dish soap is followed by a yeasty note then a dry pungent hop finish. The bitter finish lingers a bit. As the beer opens up the dish soap and bitterness grows with a thyme quality and a note of raw grain coming through aswell.
M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a tight fizzy finish and no alcohol heat.
D- I just couldn't get past the strong soap smell and taste but there is a great saison underneath. Oddly enough the saison underneath is what kept me drinking the whole bottle. The last glass took on a natural lime-base cleaning taste similar to simple green.

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Photo of akorsak
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A corked and caged 750 mL bottle from Old Farm Liquors in Frederick, MD.

A: The saison pours with an effervescent champaign-like bubbling. A white head, densely compact, recedes at a moderate pace with no lacing. Underneath, the saison has a pale lemony yellow color that could be described as sickly.

S: Fresh lemongrass, citrusy with a strong aroma. The sorachi ace knows its job and does it well, creating a lush environment that mixes well with the saison's peppery freshness. A really nice beer to sniff.

T: The lemongrass aspect of the sorachi ace is powerful, almost on par with Bullfrog's Thai PA and OBBS's Lemongrass Wheat. The citrus has a tang, a stronger lemony flavor that transcends the grassiness. Underneath the formidable hop presence, the saison doesn't shy away from coriander and musty flavors. But it all comes back to the hops, they are stunning even with a few months under their belt. Any fade has lessened the lemon and upped the lemongrass quotient. A stunning saison any way you look at it.

M: The saison is tangy, a lemony wonderland of flavors. And the pale. bready malts that come through near the finish, very nice.

D: I wish that I had squirreled away another bottle or two. I was floored by this beer at BCTC 2009 and out the bottle it is nearly as majestic.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A pale lemon pour produced a monstrous flat white head that was rocky, incredibly retaining (6+ min) and left a ton of intricate foamy lacing. Visible effervesce was light to medium with several steady streams of closely knitted bubbles rising lazily to the surface.

S: The sorachi hops are pleasantly aromatic of freshly sliced lemons with some grapefruit juice highlights of medium strength. On the trail was some flowery grapefruit and a bit of tart oranges.

T: Spicy citric oranges and fresh wet lemon-lime flavors gets things off to a good start. Crisp, with a bit of fresh greenery and herbaceous notes along with spicy pine and lemon peels really work well together to deliver a smooth tartness of citrus on the finish. I like the addition of sorachi hops, but somehow have trouble associating this as a farmhouse/saison, missing was a bit of farmhouse funk and tart fruintess I've come to expect. The sorachi definitely brings a spicy zing to the flavor but perhaps takes away from some of the other subtle farmhouse qualities. Overall was spicy with a distinct dry hopping ending with a bit of grassiness on the fade.

M: Medium bodied, exceptionally smooth with a light reference to effervesce. Spicy citric with a light alcohol presence gently warms upon the swallow.

D: A good dry citric summertime quencher, though as previously mentioned maybe not as much as a farmhouse/saison as I would like. Light and easy enough to manage with just the right amount of citric bitterness. Hardly feels like a 7.6%.

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Photo of rudzud
4.43/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at Russell's Liquors in Amherst a long time ago and it was dusty. Pretty sure this is from one of the original batches...

A - Pours into my Duvel tulip a crystal clear light straw hue with a massive fluffy three finger head that slowly faded to leave BIG side lacing and a dense creamy white blanket. Just excellent.

S - Wow, quite nice. Spectacular lemongrass and funk notes, with the ABV slightly noticeable.

T - Just like the nose, great lemongrass and barnyard funk. LOVE what time has done to the Sorachi Ace hops, but the ABV is still oddly present.

M - Nice carbonation but I have to knock this for how prominant the ABV is. Its almost sharp, definately feels higher than what it is.

O - Overall, I really, really loved this beer. The only negative was the presence of the ABV throughout pretty much every aspect. While the price is was high $14.99, I would buy again.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.39/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I'm not generally a huge fan of saisons, but this one hits all the right notes for me. Bottle purchased at the Geneseo Wegmans.

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a golden yellow, with the biggest, foamiest head I've ever seen. 4-5 inches. The head descends into great lacing all the way down the glass.

Smells like lemon zest and cut grass. Such a fresh aroma.

Tastes like lemon and honey, with a grassy, floral hop flavor rolling over everything. Lightly malted. A bit of yeast bitterness provides a small amount of funk, but it's not very strong. Spiciness at the end of each sip that recalls black pepper.

Incredible carbonation. Medium bodied.

One of my favorite saisons. Great job Brooklyn.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750ml bottle

A- Poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Pours a golden yellow color with a large white head with good retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is really nice. Lemon grass, lemon zest, spices and yeast make up the nose.

T- The taste has some lemon grass up front with some sweetness, along with some spices and a yeasty finish.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, Soriachi Ace is a winner in my book. It is another solid beer from Brooklyn Brewery.

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Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured an orange body with two finger head that left foamy lace. Has that typical barnyard funky and slightly sour aroma with touches of yeast and cracker like dryness and the sorachi hop comes through like lemon citric spice. Cracker like crispness and hop sharpness give beer a citrusy, spicy, bubbly bite yet the funkiness and yeast balance this beer so it's not overly sharp or sour, and in fact beer is only mildly funky/sour and there is an addition of notes of tropical fruit like sweetness.

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Photo of beertunes
3.8/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shared with me by BA okcomputer, thanks Justin! Poured into goblet. Poured a hazy golden yellow with a medium white head that had OK retention and lacing.

The aroma had a very nice grain base supporting some citrus notes and had a very good yeast spiciness scent as well. On the tongue, the beer featured many of the same attributes. Grain, spice, citrus mostly, with a tang of hops floating around the edges.

The body was very good, full, round, smooth & sharp at the same time, with a nice level of carbonation on the tongue. Drinkabilty was also very good, I would have enjoyed the bottle by myself. Overall, another very good brew from the gang at Brooklyn. Worth seeking out.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.6/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler fill courtesy of the super trader known as NutBrown. Thanks Alan!

From the ever versatile GT 1 Liter swing top bottle.

A big pop when I opened the swing top, it pours a clear straw gold colour with a +2 finger head of foam. There is some nice lacing.

The smell is wow....lemon, lemon grass..I have never smelled a brew like this before so I gotta put it down to the special hops used. I also get some spiciness and some yeast but the lemon influence is huge and very inviting.

The taste, again, wow. The lemon smell transfers to the taste big time with a goodly amount of pepper and near the finish, I seem to get an almost earthy maltiness...maybe it's actually a Brett-yness, that quickly succumbs to more lemon that has a nice balance between bitter and tart.

Yeah man. This is a uniquely flavoured Saison that's really hitting my palate on all the right notes.

The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium and the carbonation is medium. Very nice. And...head retention is superb and look at all the lacing!

Drinkability? This is at my comfort level for the style, abv wise, but a Saison has to bring their A game to keep me interested for the whole session. This one surely did that so for me, it is very damn drinkable and surprisingly refreshing. A superb job by Brooklyn!

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Brooklyn Sorachi Ace from Brooklyn Brewery
91 out of 100 based on 672 ratings.
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