Saranac High Peaks Lemon Ginger | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

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Saranac High Peaks Lemon GingerSaranac High Peaks Lemon Ginger

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 04-23-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 78
Photo of ElijahRivera
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle with no freshness date, consumed on 9-16-13.

A- Almost transparent light copper hue. Lots of tiny bubbles vigorously rising to the top. Really big, rocky, off-white head that mellows down to a respectable layer of froth that kept me company until the glass was drained. Unusual appearance for a saison, but let's get to smellin'.

S- Smells like a saison. It is very yeasty, fruity, and estery. I'm getting more overripe stone fruit aromas than anything lemon, ginger or hops.

T- There is a subtle and fruity initial sweetness, and it definitely nails the dryness that I look for in a saison. However, something about the flavor seems off, but not off enough to completely ruin the experience. Ok, now I'm getting the ginger! There is a prevalent boozy flavor that isn't horrible, but it isn't well hidden or what I would expect from a saison. Furthermore, the wheat malt isn't pronounced enough, and isn't pulling its weight. It is too dominated by the boozy flavor, and a not appealing bitter ginger. There is some lemon there too, but the malt and the hops are too hidden. There are also notes of raisins, grappa, and brandy.

M- Again the wheat isn't pulling its weight, which is evidenced by the body being too thin and lacking smoothness. The carbonation is under-whelming as well. The dryness is there in the finish, and along with the ginger, bitter lemon peel, and modest hop presence, leaves a pleasant tingly, warming sensation, which evolves into a welcome cool and almost minty sensation.

O- I'd like to say this would pair well with sushi, but I think the heavy-handed booziness would overwhelm and hide some of the subtleties of the more delicate types of fish. It doesn't have the ultra refreshing character that I love about saisons, and it tastes weighed down by the alcohol. I have a feeling this is likely a symptom of the brew not being as fresh as it should be. I will look for and will appreciate a bottled on date in the future. This is the first Saranac High Peaks series that I've had, and, while I appreciate the effort, I think there is still room for more care in their craft. I am going to enjoy finishing this bomber, but I won't be purchasing it again. However, I would certainly give the other High Peaks a try, and I'll continue to drink Saranac regularly as a local, budget option.

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Photo of beerthulhu
2.76/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

A: Pale orange with a strong sense of macro-carbonation. Antique white frothy head is one inch and sits rather well. Soapy lace. Minium appeal.

S: Nose of light tart lemon, ginger spice, with flashes of sweet cinnamon and a light dry muskiness of grains.

T: Flavor was semi-dry lemon, ginger with a dash of cinnamon and musky grains that closely followed the nose. A bit stingent at first, lemon grass, fennel sweet, woodsy citrus and oranges, sour malt and candied fruit. Lightly dry, harsh, unpolished finish.

M: Syrupy, medium bodied, touch of sour caramel, acidic, lacks a defined crispness.

O: Overall average offering at best, im a pretty hard evaluater of saisons/farmhouses, love the style, and a hard one to replicate though there are a few good ones made here in the states. Look for a musky belgian yeast, crisp carbonation and spicy nature, this one was meh all around. Some alcohol glow. Grain base was rough, scratchy as well flavor, not particularly smooth or sharply defined.

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Photo of yesyouam
3.57/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Saranac Lemon Ginger Saison is a very lively, hazy, amber ale with a soft, elastic, off white head that is kept in place with the constant bubbling. Lemon and ginger are apparent in the aroma, along with notes of lemongrass, apple and black pepper. It's bright. It's pretty full bodied and reasonably smooth... until the finish. The finish is a little harsh and acidic. Yes, it tastes like a Saison with lemon and ginger. The phenols are enough to be obvious, but not overpowering. The ginger flavor is full but it doesn't have that dirty taste. It almost seems like candied ginger, but without the sweetness. The aftertaste is a bit bitter and a bit sour. The longer it lingers, the more it tastes like apple. This beer is a little kooky, but there are no faults. It doesn't seem to be a challenge to drink 22 ounces of this.

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Photo of tdm168
4.24/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - dark orangish yellow with a big, soft, white head that has good retention

S - belgian funk, lemon, spices

T - lemon, ginger, Belgian funk, apricot, peach, fruity esters, alcohol

M - smooth, well carbonated, medium bodied

This is a surprisingly intricate, complex, enjoyable beer from Saranac. It had solid depth and some really nice intricacies. I really enjoyed this beer.

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Photo of Billolick
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber bottle, w/o freshness info.

A- hazed darker apricot, puffy offf white head stays nicely, then a tiny bubble film, collar and some low larger buble sheeting and then loose bits and strands of lace.

S- Strong nose of ginger, black pepper and lemon. Astringent and biting, in a good way.

T- Nose carries through onto the palate. More lemon, heavy ginger and again black pepper.

O- Bright, summery and flavorful, I'd love to enjoy this one on a warm summer day, with some salads, bread and cheeses. Nice saison. Good value.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.9/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dropped $7.50 on this from Halftime

A - Pour is somewhat thick with a 1/2 inch of sticky white head. Color is a hazy orange yellow like a pale ale.

S - Fresh ginger and fruity yeasts are what I mostly smell. A splash of tart lemon and maybe some grass also.

T - The refreshing ginger seems to cut some of the edge off of pure lemon tart flavor of this Saison after which mild touches of hard candy and fruity yeasts finish out the drink. Finish is kind of dry but hides the ABV well.

M - Again I am baffled by the 8.5% ABV. It drinks like a 7% at max even though the body is somewhat oily.

Overall its not going to make me run out and buy another but will make me consider getting other later (equally affordable) offerings from Saranac. Great beer!

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

way to go saranac! this is ambitious for you, and you pulled it off nicely, props! the pour here is a hazy light copper new penny color, maybe a little more orange than that, with a small and fading minimal white head. good nose too, lots of ginger there, fresh and raw, with a bright farmhouse yeast with plenty of tart funk, almost like the hennepin in that way, but a tad more fruity. flavor is pretty malty on the front end acutally, especially as it warms, buttery and sweet, but in the middle it dries right out and the lemon zest sourness comes in, very summery. i enjoyed this beer with from scratch moroccan meatballs, mint harissa, saffron cous cous with lemon, ginger, pommegranate, dried cherries, and fried shallots, as well as home made pita. an epic meal, and this beer stood up well to and complimented these bold flavors. in this context it was an A, in no contect at all its still a B+. good carbonation and medium body, funky finish. good effort from saranac!

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle, $7.99 at Market Basket.

Pours hazy copper with a thin head of white. A partial skim coat remained for the duration of the glass along with some smeary lacing.

Aromatics lead off with a strong ginger presence with lemon zest, apples, cloves, and bubblegum right behind. Very spicy and pungent.

Light bodied with a crisp, snappy mouthfeel. Refreshing.

A blast of ginger starts the palate with candied lemon drops and clove. Spicy, peppery undertones step forward along with honey and sweet apples.

Finishes with a sugar-laced ginger smack.

This beer is very ginger-forward and the Saison charcter is lost. Candied ginger with lemon drops.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Creamy white head, imperial pilsner straw yellow , visible bubbles floating to the top

S: Aroma of a slightly musty lemon and ginger saison, some biscuit and cracker

T: Refreshing sweet lemon, a bit of candied ginger and some spicy yeast strain that is refreshing and lightly on the saison side. This is a little more 'wet' than most Saisons , but it really is refreshing and I am sure will be many people's first taste on the Saison side. Slight lemon lime bite of sweetness.

M: Medium to thick body for a saison, mild carbonation

O: Overall a very tasty brew. For the style, it is not quite true to a saison- it is a little heavier than most and not as Farmhouse flavored as some of the more true / originals; however I think most people will be willing to forgive those issues as it is pretty tasty and definitely worth drinking.

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Photo of Suds
3.46/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I was suspicious of this beer when I saw it. I'm not a fan of gimmick ingredients in beer, and that's what I expected. However, the beer's smell really won me over. It's a completely clear, golden brew, relatively low in carbonation. The head is essentially nonexistent, but the beer itself is average in appearance. The aroma is what I liked best here. Its ginger quality really stands out, and melds well with a touch of malt and grain, backed by the lemon. I could smell the beer for long time and wouldn't grow old. The taste is a little thin...the smell's qualities carry through, but it could use a more malt based flavor to give it some depth. I was also lukewarm on the mouthfeel, which is somewhat affected by the flavor of the ginger. It's a spicy sensation. The finish is ginger, and although the beer could be better, I did enjoy it.

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Photo of fmccormi
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Straight pour from 750ml flip-top growler to a tall, straight-lipped cervoise-style Ommegang flute. Filled earlier the same day.

Appearance (4.0): Very broad, fat-bubbly head turns into a slow-receding, tight cap of ivory-colored foam that bubbles away slowly. The body is a slightly hazy, deep gold color. Leaves some spotty suds on the way down, as the head recedes. Very pretty, overall.

Smell (4.0): Up front, this comes off as a very well-built saison with a spice character pushed forward by the (surprisingly subtle) ginger inclusion. Some white pepper, a nice, round coriander character emphasized and made somewhat fruity by a somewhat hefty caramel scent, and a bright lemon scent cutting through from underneath. Overall, quite nice.

Taste (4.0): Here, the ginger really punches through, but doesn’t overwhelm anything here. It’s bright and tingles without burning at all, and is tempered by a strong, biscuity malt body. There’s an acidic, lemony finish that complements a mild, grassy hop character in the end. The ginger has a life of its own though, from start to finish. The typical clove and coriander spiciness is here too, but they hang back next to the lemon and ginger.

Mouthfeel (3.5): Much more subdued than I was expecting, but I suspect this keg was on the old side. The carbonation is mild but tingly, and the body is on the light side of medium but finishes rather dry, thanks to a mix of ABV vapor, an acidic lemon character, and some grassy hop finish. Not a bad feel, doesn’t have the carbonated character you’d expect from a standout saison but pleasing nonetheless.

Overall (3.5): This saison isn’t spot-on in any way, but it’s an interesting take and unique it’s own ways. I’d like to see this hopped with Cascade or something punchy like that, and with good bottle conditioning to give it a better body and feel. But overall, this is a good beer and I’m glad to see Saranac doing some more interesting things these days.

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Photo of Keene
3.67/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bright, golden orange in color with an abundant fluff of foam resting on top, Saranac's limited edition saison fits the bill for a light-bodied summery ale. Although it lacks some of the cloudiness and the phenolics in the nose that one might expect with the style, High Peaks Lemon Ginger does have a fragrant aroma full of lemon zest and fresh ginger and is well carbonated. Aroma hops also show up in the nose as the beer warms to room temperature.

More tart than bitter, this saison has some yeasty character in its taste along with a citrus quality that emerges mid-quaff. Malty flavor, especially white bread crust (from the wheat malt perhaps) stands out more than hops, and a sweetness plays around the edges in the finish. An enjoyable beer, especially with food such as fish or salad, if not necessarily the best example of the style.

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Photo of babbules
3.89/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22-oz bottle into a pilner glass. I have to say that I really enjoyed this one. I've always been a closet Saranac fan, and this is one of the best I've had from them. It had a good clean pour, with a golden color, minimal white head, and nice lacing. Excellent lemony smell and taste, good maltiness, and a delicate ginger finish. It reminds me of a French dessert! Definitely will have this one again.

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Photo of Brad007
3.12/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The first thing I noticed was the ABV, which seems unusually high for the style.

Pours a nice golden color with a frothy white head into my glass. Mid-range color. Active carbonation.

Lemon, citrus and just a hint of ginger round out the aromas on the tip of the nose.

It's too tart upfront, which detracts from the main flavors. Syrupy. Ginger adds a bit of heat but nothing much more.

Mouthfeel isn't much different. Lingering syrupiness kills the mouthfeel.

Alcohol is too high and it's too syrupy. Two points that do not work in favor of this ale.

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Photo of Brubaker
3.62/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- clear, yellow colored with a small off-white head.

S- Floral, sweet, ginger/spice

T- Sweet, ginger/spice, citrusy with a dark-candi background.

M- Effervescent, decent body

O- Definitely a Summer beer (of course). Sweet & slightly syrupy. Drinks better cold.

Would Drink
Might Buy
Won't Make

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Photo of Mohican88
4.02/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My girlfriend and I split a bottle, poured into an Ommegang flute.

A-dark golden with a frothy white head that sticks around. Somewhat hazy and definitely darker than I was expecting.

S- I'm pleasantly surprised at how pungent the Belgian yest shows in the nose. The lemon and ginger seems to be hidden by the yeast but it does smell very appealing.

T- The citrus is light but noticeable in the front with typical Belgian yeast characteristics throughout but the ginger really comes through after a few sips in the finish. It is slightly warming and reminiscent of a well made ginger ale.

M- A bit more viscous than I was expecting, but the carbonation was much smoother than prickly which I really enjoyed.

O- I was pleasantly surprised with this beer, I wanted to try it because of the intriguing combination but wasn't anticipating enjoying it as much as I did. I would gladly go for another bottle. Saranac has certainly stepped up their game recently, let's hope there are more good beers in the works.

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Photo of kencarman
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Unlike other reviewers here I was not all that bothered by it not being "session-able." High Peaks, pretty much by definition, tends to be Saranac/Matt's Imperial series, so the heavier body and somewhat high abv seemed appropriate for what they usually go for with HP.. Color right: a bit hazy medium pale. A bit clouded, again not all that problematic. The lemon-ginger mix does pop out quite well along with just a little yeast driven pepper phenolic. Nice head. Mouthfeel was more filling than actual gravity seemed to be: suspended proteins, I suspect. Very pleasant, though for my own palate I'd rather have the Imperial IPA HP, or the Russian Imp. Will be trying the Chocolate Orange soon... captured two of these for my summer tastings I do for locals and tourists in the Adirondacks.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had been looking for this beer for a while and finally found it. I've always liked Saranac's beers and the number of styles they try, and this one is no exception. A great take on a saison, the lemon/ginger flavors really shine through and add a nice touch of spiciness to the overall taste. A very enjoyable, smooth, and crisp beer.. would definitely try again, if only I could find the chocolate orange one!

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.57/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a very lightly hazy dark golden yellow to golden orange in color with some light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a half finger tall off-white head that quickly reduces to a medium sized patch of thin film with a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of wheat malts, lemon citrus, yeast spiciness, and ginger. Lighter amounts of honey sweetness and floral notes.

T: Similar to the smell, this beer has a wheat malt body with some moderate amounts of honey sweetness. Additionally, there are fairly strong flavors of lemon citrus and spiciness - both from the yeast and the ginger. A little sweeter than I expected for a saison.

M: Very interesting mouthfeel on this beer, slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Slightly prickly upfront while creamy and dry in the finish. Light amounts of alcohol warming.

O: Good attempt by Saranac to do a saison (their first as far as I know) but not quite on point for the style. This beer is a little too sweet and a little too heavy in the body. I actually enjoyed this beer but would not consider it sessionable.

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Photo of BigPlay1824
3.35/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed in an oversized wing glass

A: pours a nicely clear very warm golden color with a ton of active carbonation bubbles, pours with a two finger head that is very fine and creamy with miniscule bubbles, lingers quite nicely before dissipating and leaving spotty lacing around the glass
S: very fresh grassy notes and solid lemon juice like notes a slight black pepper note hits at the end
T: begins with a nice and light lemon note, very subtle, then it moves into what i would call a typical saison like character with some solid barnyard like flavors, does finish with a bit of an odd note which at first i was going to call vinegar but now i notice more as a very slight ginger note, finishes dry. i find it interesting that the 'spiciness' i would associate with the style really disappears as it warms
M: smooth and thick, minimal carbonation tingle, leaves the mouth clean and with a slight cloying note in the throat
O: im becoming more and more impressed with saranac these days, theyre really beginning to come out of their comfort zone and do some innovative things, happy with this one and very refreshing on this 90+ degree night

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Photo of plaid75
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On draft at The Lark, East Northport, NY.

Poured a medium copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was little retention and lacing.

The smell featured an upfront ginger aroma followed by a mild yeast ester.

The flavor was likewise highlighted by the ginger with a smattering of esters and caramel.

The mouthfeel was chewy with a very dry finish.

Overall an interesting a tasty saison. A bit heavier than I'm used to for the style, but good nonetheless.

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Photo of Gmann
3.82/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Listed as a saison by the brewer. Pours a lightly toasted straw color with a big fizzy white head that quickly rises and settles. A light cap remained with some lacing on the glass.

The aroma is bright and floral. Clovey yeast notes mix with a floral honey and lemon scent. The ginger provides some additional sweetness and an additional spice note.

The aroma is of a lightly bready malt with some caramel notes. A bit soft and thick for the saison style. Noticable ginger flavor which provides sweetness and spice. Noticable lemon flavor as well, similar to the lemon that was used in the SA coastal wheat. Some clove, pepper, and hay round out the flavor profile. A tad on the sweet-side overall.

The feel is moderate with fizzy carbonation. Sweet on the palate but has enough spice and farmhouse flavor to offset. The alcohol is a bit noticable and not really wanted in a saison. I'd prefer it to be a little more dry as well.

A good attempt at a saison by saranac. A bit too big for the style and a tad too sweet but it is flavorful.

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Photo of Kendo
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from the bomber into a Harpoon pint glass. Body is clear coppery-golden with a half-finger white head. Nice fine-bubbled carbonation rising.

S: Interesting - I get a lot of different things: lemon (zest and peel), fruity yeasty esthers and wheat malt.

T: All those different things come together fairly well in the nose, but there's too much in the taste. I get the wheat twanginess, citrusy lemon, some generic spiciness, fruity yeast and it all finishes with some peppery spice, perhaps a taste of ginger, and heat from the ABV.

M: The feel is also kind of all over the place - the fine-bubbled carbonation feels more prickly and sharp on the palate than you'd expect; however, there's also a bit of creaminess towards the back of the sip, which counteracts the slickness up front.

O: Torn between a 3.5 and a 4.0 here; I'll stick with the lower grade. I'm not liking this beer enough for a 4 in this category. .. .

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Photo of Vineyardselite
4.03/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lemons, lemons and than the ginger! What a great brew for the summer!

Got a case of this of the other day at the store, thanks Paul from FP to give me one of your allocations! Pretty sure will not last long!

Pours a little orange, almost clear. Hardly any head so no retention to write about! The rooms fills will spicy, lemon, ginger, lemons, and more lemons. The ginger is the driving force behind this one, a good thing. The brew is extremely clean, crisp and very refreshing. I am not a huge fan of herb/spiced beer but this one really hits the spot on a hot summer day!

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle. Pours a translucent light orange color with almost no head. Aroma is spicy with some yeast and lemon peel. Flavors of lemon and ginger up front. Some yeast as well but the spicy and ginger flavors dominate. Lemon again towards the end. The alcohol is well hidden. Light mouthfeel but a pretty crisp and refreshing beer. The spicy ginger flavor is almost too much and not all that balanced with the lemon. Its not a style I drink often but this is an alright offering. Overall, one and done is enough for this one.

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Saranac High Peaks Lemon Ginger from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
3.66 out of 5 based on 78 ratings.
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