Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Farmhouse Ale - Sahti
Ranked #3
Ranked #14,416
3.92 | pDev: 14.29%
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States
Very Good
Notes: This Ancient Ale is a modern take on a 9th-century Finnish beer.

The wort for Sah'tea is caramelized over white-hot river rocks, and the beer is fermented with a German weizen yeast. In addition to juniper berries foraged from the Finnish countryside, Sah'tea is flavored with black tea, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and black pepper.

The spicing is subtle and balanced, and Sah'tea is a highly-quaffable, truly unique brew with a full mouthfeel.

Reviews: 606 | Ratings: 1,852 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by justintcoons:
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justintcoons from Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Jan 08, 2013
More User Reviews:
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Das_Reh from Florida

4.44/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

2012 bottle. Poured 2/15/2015 into a tulip.

A = Dark gold hue with fervent carbonation. Lots of free floating sediment in the mix, forming a silty pile at the bottom of the glass. Head dissipated quickly. Minimal lacing.

S = Intense aroma of gingerbread, cinnamon, nutmeg, and other sweet spices. Juniper, spiced tea, bananas and rum.

T = Follows the incredible aroma with boozy gingerbread, sweet spiced Chai tea, bananas, brown sugar, and sweet pine. Would be a wonderful beer to have on Christmas and would be great in a baked dessert. Then again, that's what this beer is to me, a dessert in a bottle.

F = Medium, almost syrupy. Definitely a slow sipper, but that's not a bad thing.

O = This beer defied all my expectations. Heavily spiced and aromatic, sweet and warming, a perfect beer for Christmas time (there's even a reindeer on the bottle). Too sweet and heavy to be sessionable (not to mention the 9% abv), more of a dessert beer. HIGHLY recommended.

Feb 16, 2015
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Overlord from California

1.48/5  rDev -62.2%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

Thanks beerloco! Sometimes, it's delightful to be able to rip into something. I've been too kind of late.

Pours a beautiful orange amber, with a thin white crust that clings to the glass. The attractive appears belies the fact that it is a loathsome substance not fit for a beer lover's consumption.

Smells like rotting medicinal tea, a sickly sweet honeysuckle-ish aroma. Smells like corpses dipped in some sort of treacle substance.

Taste is even worse. Like some sort of witch's herb concoction. Why was this even made? I'd tried to see if I could pick out the various flavors, but it's just an abhorrent, sweet, medicine-chest pile of offal.

Dogfishhead can push the envelope. Sometimes it really works out great, sometimes ... not so much.

Nice mouthfeel though!

Nov 10, 2009
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freewill35 from Indiana

4/5  rDev +2%

Sep 21, 2012
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Janeinma from Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Jun 02, 2013
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Faina from Massachusetts

2.5/5  rDev -36.2%

Jan 05, 2012
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MDDMD from Pennsylvania

3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-golden amber color with tan head slow to dissipate and good lacing

S-sweet and citrusy with aromatic spices

T-citrus and malt flavors combined with chai tea spices

F-medium bodied and smooth

O-an interesting beer,but beers with this type of added spicing are not my cup of "tea"

Jul 23, 2011
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NorCalBeer from California

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Nov 05, 2012
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Jtrigonis from California

4/5  rDev +2%

Aug 27, 2013
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Dhockenbrough from California

4.68/5  rDev +19.4%

Sep 28, 2014
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biboergosum from Canada (AB)

4.11/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, from the strangely limited selection at the Whole Foods in Littleton, Colorado.

This beer pours a hazy golden yellow colour, with two pudgy fingers of puffy, tightly foamy off-white head, which leaves little beyond a few instances of sea plume lace around the glass as things sink duly southwards.

It smells of pumpkin chai tea (I know no gourds sacrificed themselves for this beer, but 'tis the season, and the associative dissonance is strong there), a mild earthy fruitiness, a bit of candy sugar, a mildly spicy grain pale malt, and faint earthy, soapy hops. The taste continues the sugary sweetness bent insofar as the bready caramel malt is concerned, with a heady dose of indistinct warming winter spices, some middling black pepper, a weirdly corresponding understated saline character, earthy yeast, woody juniper, over-steeped black tea, a bit of dry Scandinavian licorice, and virtually nothing in the way of hops. No sign of the 18-proof booze, so, um, yay?

The bubbles are rather unassuming and pleasantly downplayed, the body a decent medium weight, fairly smooth, and even a wee bit creamy. It finishes on the sweet side, the caramel and pale malts bolstered by sugar and spice alike, while a slight warming profile kicks off its start-up routine.

A rather pleasant tea-infused big Belgian-style beer, which is obviously not the intent here, but hey, it's DFH, so you never really know. The nods to Finnish brewing history are tangential at best, especially after the guest ingredient quickly runs its course. So the best I can say about this is - forget preconditions and premonitions - this is a tasty tea-bagged strong ale, all without the immediate alcohol heat conditions one might readily expect.

Oct 09, 2013
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Radome from Florida

3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a goblet.

A - Golden to slightly orange color. Somewhat cloudy, with bits of sediment suspended. Off-white head is thin and not too persistent. It settles into a thick ring around the glass.

S - Aroma is very unusual. A mix of strong juniper, indistinct spices and tea. Malt and hops don't stand out. It smells like a gruit, or a pure heather ale, not any kind of conventional beer.

T - Taste is dominated by a strong, sharp juniper. There is orange peel and cinnamon at a lower lever. No real malt or hops. It tastes like a tea with mulling spices, not any beer I know. Alcohol is not noticeable. Clean, but very different.

M - Thin to medium body. Bitterness is low. Very low alcohol burn. Light carbonation.

O - Overall, I find this a clean but not entirely great beer. I don't care for the mix of juniper and other spices. Although interesting, I won't be seeking it out again.

Jan 05, 2014
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FullObs from Illinois

4/5  rDev +2%

Aug 23, 2012
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ABokononist from New York

4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

Jul 16, 2012
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frosted33 from Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Jul 02, 2014
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1sophrosyne1 from Minnesota

3.16/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Consumed over 20 minutes from a draft pour at the tap house.
The appearance is of an amberized wit with slightly more clarity. The off white head is thin and lingers very little; small spots of lacing hang onto the glass.
The nose has the banana of a wit, as well. It’s covered with a dose of cinnamon, nutmeg and some honeyed ginger. It’s the most intriguing aspect of this brew.
Spiced banana is there right at the start with some of the honey sweetness, not unlike the preview of scents. The middle is dominated by booze wrapped around a nutty center that lingers into the aftertaste. The woodiness and ethanol stifle much of the gin-fruit essence and its companion resins. Despite their power, the flavor profile is still somewhat short—tannins seem to cut off subtle spices rather than allowing them to create an interesting aftertaste.
The mouthfeel is rather thick and heavy—disarming in a way that a Sahti often is. Still, one would hope for more length from the available oils and ample ethanol. The latter certainly does warm…
In general, I wonder if other positive reviewers have been seduced by what the brewers indicate they did to create this beer instead of focusing on what has actually been created. There are other things it could and should be, based upon the general description of recipe. But there is little opportunity for juniper and other Scandinavian herbs to contribute as they might, perhaps due to the choice of malts and high dose of alcohol. As a result, even time and warmth don't make it stylistically on target, even if it's curiously drinkable.

Jul 28, 2013
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GearHaiku from New York

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Aug 15, 2014
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clayrock81 from Florida

4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a cloudy orange/gold body with minimal head and lacing around the glass. A citric/clovey type aroma with some spiciness and herbal hoppy bitterness. Some sour/tart fruit notes mixed in as well as some sweetness but I can only really pick out some honey although I know there is more. A complex medium-bodied beer that has a tart, sharp citric and spicy flavor up front mixed with some sweetness like cherries, berries, ginger, nutmeg, honey along with some other fruitiness. Finishes crisp and clean and the ABV complements this beer and I find that it leaves a nice mellow aftertase. I enjoyed this bottle very much.

Jan 09, 2010
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HuaiDan from New York

4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

Dec 12, 2011
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Prospero from Colorado

3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Jul 02, 2015
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randomjazzr from Georgia

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Mar 17, 2012
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3/5  rDev -23.5%

Oct 07, 2012
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JamLand from District of Columbia

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

May 19, 2013
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Iz-GOod from Canada (QC)

3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dec 31, 2014
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weatherdog from Illinois

3.49/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Evan1023 for this one.

75cL bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottle date read 'Bottled in 2009'

It pours a hazy golden orange with a 3 finger pillowy frothy head. Minimal lacing ran down the glass as it emptied.

At first whiff I'm getting some nutmeg and clove smells but when I stick my whole nose in I'm getting a distinct chai tea smell. It seems like a great marriage of malty sweet beer and black tea.

Taste is just like someone mixed in some chai tea with a light crystal malt heavy base beer. I'm also picking up some orange taste. I'm not sure if this is from any citrus hops or if they used orange peel in the process. It finishes a little too sweet.

It is very full bodied malty spicy beer. The drinkability suffers from how spiced and heavy it is. I drank the whole 75cL but was rather tired after the first half.

I am a chai tea lover and average about one a day so I really was looking forward to trying this beer. It does satisfy me in that the flavor components are there but I was kind of wishing for a more bold tea flavor from something coming from DFH. I am glad I tried it and enjoyed it but would recommend having no more than about 8oz. at a time. After that it becomes too filling and kind of a chore to drink.

Jan 07, 2010
Sah'tea from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 1852 ratings