Best American-Brewed Saisons?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Ilovelampandbeer, Apr 9, 2015.

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  1. LordCrabapple

    LordCrabapple Initiate (0) Sep 5, 2006 England

    Of course, the chances of American saisons being better than Belgian (why say European?) saisons are very high as they probably produce a hundred times the number from Belgium. And, as I said, the saison 'style' is probably an American invention anyway, so one would expect the American beer to be superior.
  2. jsrose16

    jsrose16 Initiate (0) Nov 5, 2014 Illinois

    Logsdon's are incredible
    unhyped likes this.
  3. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter Initiate (0) Aug 23, 2013 Oregon

    I repeat. do you even 'tome bro?

    It might be easy to hit dingers in triple A ball. but when you're facing Kershaw in the ninth down by two you gotta swing away to put your boys into the 'ship. You only got one life, one shot, one saison. When you see daddy at the end of the field, you have any easy run to him until you see those endzone stripes because there ain't no Ray Lewis copycat gonna stop you. Sounds like you been fluttering with D II college boys, getting your rocks off on beating up on Sam Houston State thinking you the best. In reality you are just the 2012 version of Tiger Woods thinking that you still can albatross that fiver. Arnold Palmer could do it, and you be like Arnold Palmer who? We be sitting here playing two different games. You talking about that American saisons. American football? Get past the American past time and respect the international past time. Real Football. FC Wallonia.


    I believe I might have mixed some metaphors, but I hope you can understand exactly what I am referencing to.
  4. GoesWithLobster

    GoesWithLobster Initiate (0) Mar 28, 2007 Massachusetts

    Shaun Hill's great aunts and uncles

    Grassroots Convivial, Brother Soigne, and Arctic Saison

    Allagash - Nice, accessible example of the style

    Austin St. Grist Mill - Awesome surprise from last time I was in Maine



    Stillwater Classique - I think this one is criminally underrated

    Have recently tried some OEC stuff and really liked it. And I've always enjoyed Boulevard Saison Brett and Tank 7.
    StrappingYoungLad likes this.
  5. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,263) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    I wasted my time and gave you the benefit of the doubt. I'll err in that direction even when I know better. I mentioned Shaun Hill's favorite saison. Do you think he's qualified to have an opinion? Instead, you just respond to those that have antagonized you. It's my fault for feeding you (as the kids say). Your shtick isn't half bad. It's lovely that you're putting money in this game... and it's telling that you consider it a game. Before you get back to starting more threads that get locked or deleted, I'll leave you with your own words and you can bask in their synergy with what you've said here.
  6. jimmypa

    jimmypa Initiate (0) Nov 15, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Almost anything Hill Farmstead/Grassroots and Tired Hands are my two top dogs as of now.
  7. breadwinner

    breadwinner Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2014 California

    Here's a touch of heresy -- had some Saison Dupont on draught just this week and was terribly underwhelmed. Way too heavy on the apple esters, not enough grassy/hay/grainy notes, a bit sweet...I was a little stunned at how underwhelming it was. Honestly haven't had it in a bottle in years. Could the bottle really make that much a difference? Feel bad taking a swipe at what is arguably the archetype of the style, but it, frankly, just wasn't very good.
  8. southdenverhoo

    southdenverhoo Devotee (403) Aug 13, 2004 Colorado

    It isn't an accident, that La Vermontoise. Still the only Hill Farmstead (partially) beer I've been able to get my hands on here in Colorado.

    Thanks for your post quoting Shaun Hill about Brasserie de Blaugies, who make my favorite beers from my first trip to Belgium, specifically La Moneuse and Mr. Hill's favorite, Saison d'Epeautre. I figured he probably was fond of the beer, ergo the collaboration, but I didn't know he was on record as saying it was his favorite. it's mine too, which legitimizes (IMO) my palate a little bit.

    (My own conversation w/ Pierre-Alex involved my discovery, after a very long drive, that Mother's Day is celebrated on the same day in France as it is in the US (or at least it was in 2014) with the result that if you don't have a reservation at Brasserie de Blaugies on that day, no matter how far you've driven, you ain't getting in. "Ce n'est pas possible, monsieur! Je regrette, mais ce n'est pas possible!" Delivered with a smile and the classic Gallic shrug. But with my horrendous high school french (43 years later) we figured out that we possibly could sample some of their beer at an Algerian/Moroccan restaurant just back up the road, in Dour, which might not be full...and it wasn't, and we did. And the proprietor of Fleurs d'Oranger was impressed at our order: "This is our local beer, you know of it?")
  9. TWStandley

    TWStandley Crusader (762) Jan 15, 2008 Massachusetts

    Harder to get: Hill Farmstead Arthur - this also might be my "only have one beer for the rest of your life" beer.

    Easier to get: Ommegang Hennepin. Just a solid, solid beer.
  10. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,263) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    If you are suggesting that great beer journeys can be had in places other than Vermont, and that getting turned away isn't the end of the world, you are succeeding. Was the beer at Fleurs d'Oranger from the bottle? Cheers.
  11. southdenverhoo

    southdenverhoo Devotee (403) Aug 13, 2004 Colorado

    yes, but a 500ml bottle. (This was La Moneuse; we later had Saison d"Epeautre back in Brussels a few days later, at Moeder Lambic, and it was from the 750.)

    Is it available on draft? Even at Brasserie de Blaugies, they had bottles on display, in a stand to the left of the front door. I didn't see a draft set-up, although we weren't there very long and I was a little flustered at my mistake in not getting a reservation, also trying to recall enough French to get a recommendation from Monsieur Carlier as to where nearby we might find his beer...I didn't see it on tap elsewhere in Belgium...That is something I would like to try on a return trip.
    #91 southdenverhoo, Apr 10, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2015
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  12. Kurmaraja

    Kurmaraja Initiate (0) May 21, 2013 California

    Crooked Stave's Surette and Vieille series hardly make them major players. This has probably been covered, but CS's strength is not in saisons.
  13. Kurmaraja

    Kurmaraja Initiate (0) May 21, 2013 California

    When did a difference of opinion constitute spitting in the face of all America? I thought America was, you know, cool with differences of opinion.

    I'm sure you realize that HF's highest rated saison is a collaboration with Brasserie de Blaugies. I suspect there is a reason very talented American brewers want to collaborate with European breweries such as Blaugies, Thiriez, and others. And I suspect that reason is not to show off their crushing superiority.

    Ratings bias keeps the Blaugies beers from being rated higher IMHO - and the fact that for some reason only brett / sour / wine ba saisons seem to be considered real saisons these days - but Blaugies beers are quite nice. I don't know why people always have to resort to violent metaphors - this stout DESTROYS that one, this saison CRUSHES all others - as if it's a winner take all game, that there's no room for difference of opinion or diversity, but Blaugies stuff is on the same quality level as the best American stuff. Perhaps they're not your style so you'll prefer American, but apples and oranges can both taste good. There doesn't need to be a steel cage match to see which fruit crushes all other fruit.

    If you (or others) don't have Blaugies locally and would like to give them a whirl, let me know. I can save you a flight and send you a box. Fantome, Blaugies, Glazen Toren saisons all sit on shelves around Chicago while people occupy themselves chasing Coffee Dino'Smores because adding three or four adjuncts means it's a better beer.
  14. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter Initiate (0) Aug 23, 2013 Oregon

    Tradsies? You missing that Boneyard / Barley Browns yet?
    Kurmaraja likes this.
  15. Kurmaraja

    Kurmaraja Initiate (0) May 21, 2013 California

    I do have a soft spot for anything / everything from the PNW. You guys even make some saisons I've heard.
    TheeWalrusHunter likes this.
  16. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,263) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    Well said.

    My apologies to @Plower ... I lost my cool a little bit. I'd like to think that I don't do that too often here.
  17. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,263) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    I've seen their beers on tap here in NY. I didn't see anything on tap in Brussels, but their 750 bottles were easy enough to find there.
  18. hoptualBrew

    hoptualBrew Initiate (0) May 29, 2011 Florida

    IMO, Hill Farmstead is on another level when it comes to Farmhouse ales. The complexity & elegance of their beers are unmatched from my experience. Granted, I haven't had Side Project, SARA, or Casey yet but have had a lot of others.

    When I think Farmhouse ale though I think of rusticity, locality, terroir. Although some of the bigger breweries produce some outstanding Saison, I feel for the most part they fail to capture those three aforementioned elements that legitimize the beer as truly world class. Cheers
    Kurmaraja likes this.
  19. Janeinma

    Janeinma Initiate (0) May 24, 2009 Massachusetts

    damn I enjoyed that saison when someone sent it in a trader- awesome
  20. djsmith1174

    djsmith1174 Initiate (0) Aug 21, 2005 Minnesota

    Brooklyn Sorachi Ace
    Boulevard Tank 7
    Ommegang Hennepin
  21. tjumfrid

    tjumfrid Initiate (0) Jun 15, 2013 Arizona

    Logsdon's Saison/Saison Bretta. I also really like Lost Abbey's Red Barn Ale.
  22. Plower

    Plower Initiate (0) Nov 23, 2014 Texas

    It's okay, I'm from Texas and I lose my cool all the time. I accept your apology.

    Sorry man, I was just standing up for my home team I guess. I also mighta stepped over the line before with my Shiner Bock and Sam Adams comments and offended some of the snobby types on here. I understand that you boys are looking for flavor profiles that "The Bock" just may not have for you. So anyway, I'll make an effort to buy a Euro saison, perhaps of the Blaugies variety and I'll write up a nice review. I'll be honest, unlike many of the reviews on here which are an attempt to hype and overrate certain beers. Ya know something though....those Euro beers might be lower rated because they aren't as fresh due to the delay in distribution to America. Ever consider that? I mean, how many hands have those Blaugies been through and how many days in storage until sale? Those are key questions for a fair comparison.
    Domestic4life likes this.
  23. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,872) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Me too!!

    fmccormi and zid like this.
  24. PatrickCT

    PatrickCT Poo-Bah (2,033) Feb 18, 2015 Connecticut

    Hennipen for me.
  25. Kurmaraja

    Kurmaraja Initiate (0) May 21, 2013 California

    Consider freshness? Of course I have. I've even drank the beers before formulating an opinion. ;-)

    I've never found "freshness" to be an issue with the Blaugies, Glazen Toren, Fantome stuff I've had. They seem to do ok with some age. Your point is completely fair with much German stuff and less rustic saisons like Dupont - I've had many that seem past their prime. They don't seem to age well.

    Another factor at play is the importer. I'm not sure what Shelton does to guarantee quality of the items they import. I'd bet it's pretty detailed though and would love to hear info if anyone knows. I've read some cool stuff that B. United does to control quality of what they import, going so far as to dry hop some of the beers in the US after importing. Here's one example of how they control quality for draft:

    Point I'm making here is that all importers are not created equal and the best go to great lengths to present a quality product. After all, they have a financial interest and, hopefully, a personal passion.
    zid likes this.
  26. Kurmaraja

    Kurmaraja Initiate (0) May 21, 2013 California

    If rustic / local / terroir is your game you definitely need to get some Logsdon.
  27. Norica

    Norica Aspirant (224) Feb 2, 2006 Massachusetts

    Have you ever considered buying a flophouse?
  28. DrMindbender

    DrMindbender Initiate (0) Jul 13, 2014 South Carolina

    I'm a fan of Wicked Weed's various saisons
  29. mikepcarney

    mikepcarney Initiate (0) Oct 28, 2009 Ohio

    Crooked Stave
    Hill Farmstead
  30. swedishmailman

    swedishmailman Initiate (0) Jul 12, 2013 Georgia

    I'm surprised not too many people have mentioned Jester King, especially Provenance. The lemon/lime version was one of the best saisons I've ever had.
  31. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,263) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    Interesting. Glad B. United brings in Schlenkerla.
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  32. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,263) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    Me three!
    (But I'd even settle for a four pack)
    JackHorzempa likes this.
  33. southdenverhoo

    southdenverhoo Devotee (403) Aug 13, 2004 Colorado

    100% true. It IS better there fresher, even though a bottle conditioned saison doesn't fall off as much as a double IPA. It's not the time IMO as much as it is the mistreatment. So bear that in mind when you taste one here, and if you ever get a chance to go to Belgium there is much there for you to enjoy besides the Blaugies beers.
    Kurmaraja likes this.
  34. dank203

    dank203 Devotee (496) May 21, 2012 New Jersey

    saison blanc, lost abbey. saison rue, bruery. ground break, ithaca
    #114 dank203, Apr 12, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2015
  35. WellRested518

    WellRested518 Initiate (0) Mar 7, 2014 New York

    Oxbow. Can't believe I forgot about oxbow.
  36. ChuckHardslab

    ChuckHardslab Initiate (0) Jan 25, 2012 Texas

    I really like Brooklyn Sorachi Ace, Boulevard Tank 7, and one that I brew myself with lemon zest and seeds of paradise.
  37. DaverCS

    DaverCS Initiate (0) Dec 9, 2014 Arizona

    Funkwerks saison or tropic king
  38. PGD120

    PGD120 Initiate (0) Jan 20, 2015 New Jersey

    Boulevard saison brett is my favorite
  39. itracy63

    itracy63 Devotee (405) Apr 20, 2013 Washington

    The real question, though, is what saison goes best with BBQ corn nuts?
    ChuckHardslab and BillG2330 like this.
  40. Dansac

    Dansac Initiate (138) Dec 6, 2014 California

    It's my favorite beer, ever.
    LakerLeith likes this.
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