Your Top 10 Saisons

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Immortale25, Dec 7, 2012.

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  1. Immortale25

    Immortale25 Poo-Bah (3,059) May 13, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Saison is one of my favorite styles. I'd like to post my top ten favorites to hear feedback and suggestions on what I should try in the future. My following favorites, in order:

    1. The Bruery Saison Rue
    2. Weyerbacher Seventeen
    3. Saint Somewhere Saison Athene
    4. Brasserie Thiriez Blonde d'Esquelbecq
    5. Smuttynose Farmhouse Ale
    6. Brasserie Dupont Avec Les Bons Voeux
    7. Great Divide Colette Farmhouse Ale
    8. Cigar City Guava Groove
    9. Avery Anniversary Ale - Sixteen
    Tie for tenth place: Terrapin Tomfoolery and Evil Twin/Stillwater/Stone The Perfect Crime (both are black saisons)
    Honorable Mention: Coronado Saison by the Sea (I'm a sucker for spearmint) and, of course, Saison Dupont.

    The underlying sentiment here is, how do you feel about black saisons? Other than that, any must-have versions of the style I'm missing?
  2. AutumnBeerLove

    AutumnBeerLove Aspirant (243) Oct 16, 2010 Vermont
    Beer Trader

    Hill Farmstead brews excellent saisons.
  3. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) Jan 27, 2012 California

    Can't stand the hype or a lot of Shaun's views about the beer industry but his Saisons can't be beat from what I've tasted.

    Saison Rue is an excellent beer but when you compare to HF it's garbage. Not exaggerating.
  4. cmmcdonn

    cmmcdonn Initiate (0) Jun 21, 2009 Virginia

  5. Immortale25

    Immortale25 Poo-Bah (3,059) May 13, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Then I guess I need some Hill Farmstead in my life
    mcrago and JxExM like this.
  6. Immortale25

    Immortale25 Poo-Bah (3,059) May 13, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Explain yourself
  7. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) Jan 27, 2012 California

    I had Arthur, Clara, and Anna sent to me recently - outstanding. Light, crisp, beautiful beers.
    grassrootsVT likes this.
  8. AutumnBeerLove

    AutumnBeerLove Aspirant (243) Oct 16, 2010 Vermont
    Beer Trader

    But not in top 10? You are bitter
  9. pixieskid

    pixieskid Initiate (0) Jun 4, 2009 Germany

    What are his views/where can I read about them?
  10. pixieskid

    pixieskid Initiate (0) Jun 4, 2009 Germany

    I'm thrilled to see you have listed a french beer in your top 10 list, but Blonde d'Esquelbecq is not a saison, none of his beers are saisons (despite what it says on here).
    FarmerTed likes this.
  11. vurt

    vurt Savant (945) Apr 11, 2004 Oregon
    Premium Member

    Boulevard Saison-Brett is magnificent. ( Their Tank 7 Saison is also quite good. (

    And since you have The Bruery's Saison Rue in the top spot, you ought to try their spring seasonal, Saison de Lente. (

    Upright Brewing in Portland makes some fine saisons too. I really like Flora Rustica. (

    Speaking of Oregon, I also think the Seizoen ( and Seizoen Bretta ( from Logsdon are delicious.

    As someone has no doubt already mentioned, Hill Farmstead makes some incredible saisons.
  12. MtnBiker

    MtnBiker Initiate (70) Jun 28, 2011 Oklahoma

    Pretty local but Prairie Artesian Ales Saison.
    BigCheese and fmccormi like this.
  13. beerpadawan

    beerpadawan Initiate (0) Aug 12, 2007 California

    ^Second the Logsdon. Recently had the opportunity to try their Bretta; Oak Bretta; Fresh Hop (along with most of their other releases). Bretta was my favorite, but have a bottle of Fresh Hop ready for a second go.
  14. bstyle

    bstyle Devotee (441) Apr 27, 2006 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    Any Saison list that is missing Logsdon needs some serious reevaluation. They are killing it!
  15. draheim

    draheim Poo-Bah (2,436) Sep 18, 2010 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Saison is arguably my favorite style. A few that have been overlooked so far:
    Saison du Pelican
    Fantôme Saison
    Ommegang Hennepin
    Anchorage Love Buzz
    Lost Abbey Red Barn
    Dupont Bière De Miel Biologique

    I'd reinforce what vurt said. Saison-Brett is outstanding (especially w/ a couple years), and Upright and Logsdon are doing some world-class saisons. Seizoen Bretta in particular is wonderful.
    luwak, RobCorriveau, Mcal and 2 others like this.
  16. CelticAleMan

    CelticAleMan Initiate (0) Dec 11, 2010 California

    Logsdon and Fantome pretty much have me covered. I would love to try the Hill Farmstead saisons (and any hoppy beers they have). Upright is really good. There is a friend of mine (not a professional, yet) who makes saisons that will be mentioned in a thread like this in the future.:wink:
  17. Cozzatoad

    Cozzatoad Initiate (0) Feb 2, 2011 Italy

  18. BB1313

    BB1313 Poo-Bah (2,698) Jul 16, 2009 Ohio

    There's a small brewery in Ohio called Rockmill and they focus on those styles and do them very well. Their saison is amazing but kinda pricey.

    Brooklyn Sorachi Ace is awesome too, I love that stuff..
    Blueribbon666 and fmccormi like this.
  19. mpayne5

    mpayne5 Zealot (512) Aug 18, 2011 Indiana
    Beer Trader

  20. bylerteck

    bylerteck Poo-Bah (2,852) May 17, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

  21. Anonymous1

    Anonymous1 Initiate (0) Mar 19, 2012 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    No Hill Farmstead, Upright, Logsdon, or Fantome? I think you left the four best saison centric craft breweries off your list!

    Upright is just crushing it right now. Especially with their sole comp series.
    luwak likes this.
  22. rfbenavi80

    rfbenavi80 Initiate (0) Mar 15, 2010 Missouri

    Have to put some love for Boulevard out there. I want to add Tank 7 and Saison-Brett to the list.
  23. JonnyBeers

    JonnyBeers Disciple (333) Oct 24, 2012 British Columbia (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Logsdon Seizoen Bretta is probably my fav at the moment. Boulevard Brett pretty damn good. Anything by Upright is damn good. Defining moment for me in craft beer was having a Dupont Foret at NOPA in San Fran a few yrs ago with a pork chop the size of my head. Meat and beer combo was mind blowing. End of story... Craft Beer For life! (and I love Saisons)
    matthaslaservision and vurt like this.
  24. yourefragile

    yourefragile Poo-Bah (2,149) Dec 16, 2006 District of Columbia
    Beer Trader

    DSlim71 and sideshowe like this.
  25. yourefragile

    yourefragile Poo-Bah (2,149) Dec 16, 2006 District of Columbia
    Beer Trader

    Also the quality and variety (usually at least 4 different saisons on draft every visit) of Tired Hands makes them a must try if you like the style.
    Thorpe429 likes this.
  26. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,330) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    Just so you know- the Weyerbacher is more of a spiced Belgian Strong Ale than a saison- with more sweetness, body and alcohol presense. Drink it on its own terms, don't expect something dry and a bit funky, and you should enjoy it (I've had quite a few myself over the past few months), but I don't think it belongs on any list of top saisons.
    fmccormi likes this.
  27. fmccormi

    fmccormi Meyvn (1,331) Oct 24, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    I have to admit, a few of those I haven't had, a few of those I have and do enjoy, and a few of those would be nowhere near my top 10 saisons list. Echoing TongoRad, Weyerbacher 17 just isn't a saison. It's a slightly farmhousey BSPA with weird adjuncts, and it was okay but not great in any way (my opinion). Athene had some really good moments but was way too heavy on the chamomile for me; Smuttynose is tasty, but a heavy bastard (admittedly, it's been a while and I need to revisit it); Great Divide Colette, to be honest, I found to be thoroughly mediocre in most respects.

    My favorite saisons (that I've had, in no particular order): Ommegang Hennepin, Pretty Things Jack D'Or, Stillwater Stateside, Stillwater Cellar Door, Epic Utah Sage, Brooklyn Sorachi Ace, Cigar City Guava Grove, Boulevard Tank 7, and Goose Island Sofie.
  28. fmccormi

    fmccormi Meyvn (1,331) Oct 24, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Though I do have bottles of HF Anna and Arthur waiting in the wings, and am continually tempted to pull the trigger on Saison du Swamp, so my list my expand sometime soon.
  29. nulledge

    nulledge Initiate (0) Jul 14, 2008 Florida

    In no particular order:
    Brooklyn Sorachi Ace
    Swamphead Saison du Swamp
    del Borgo Duchessic
    St. Somewhere Athene
    CCB Cucumber Saison
    CCB Table Saison
    Logsdon Seizoen Bretta
    Oxbow BA Farmhouse Pale
    Saison D'Erpe Mer
    St. Somewhere Rose

    I've had the normal Logsdon Seizoen, but it was not a great experience, there was some weird stratification going on in the bottle. The top of the glass was super-dry, and then the bottom was straight pear juice.
  30. nulledge

    nulledge Initiate (0) Jul 14, 2008 Florida

    The $20 price tag on the Saison du Swamp is so hard to justify sometimes.
    fmccormi likes this.
  31. fmccormi

    fmccormi Meyvn (1,331) Oct 24, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Yah. I'm fuckin' poor, man. (Relatively speaking, anyway.) Hard to spring for that when you've got a teaching assistant's salary.
  32. riotinmyskull

    riotinmyskull Initiate (0) Dec 15, 2011 Virginia

    this thread needs more stillwater
  33. fmccormi

    fmccormi Meyvn (1,331) Oct 24, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    I nominated two Stillwater beers!
  34. Thorpe429

    Thorpe429 Poo-Bah (5,394) Aug 18, 2008 Illinois
    Industry Beer Trader

    Tired Hands, Hill Farmstead, Logsdon, and Upright win the American battle, hands down. There are plenty of other American breweries making good saisons, but none are at the level of these four. (Jolly Pumpkin gets added to this list if you want to include their beers under the Saison/Farmhouse umbrella.) Boulevard Tank 7 is really nice as well, but I wouldn't put them in the elite level, particularly since Logsdon has come on the scene and blown Saison - Brett out of the water.

    Outside of the "top" ones, McKenzie is way up there, though demoted slightly due to a lack of selection. There are plenty of other good to very good producers, but these are the best, IMO.

    Outside of the U.S., Fantome and Dupont win for me. The two main saisons from each are amazing, though in very different ways.
    raveskdr, cavedave, drewba and 3 others like this.
  35. sjccmd

    sjccmd Zealot (593) Feb 11, 2008 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    I feel like I must reinforce The Bruery's Saison de Lente and Anchorage Love Buzz, and not just Fantôme Saison but anything by Fantôme.
  36. Jnorton00

    Jnorton00 Initiate (0) Apr 13, 2007 Massachusetts

  37. tendermorsel

    tendermorsel Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2006 Massachusetts

    There are very few good American Saisons out there. A bunch of Shaun Hill's saisons are awesome. I had an amazing Rye Saison from Oxbow in ME. It was 4% and quite the quaff. I did like the Love Buzz too. And Saison w/Brett.

    Overall though I think most American Saisons are crap. Nothing is better than Saison Dupont and in particular Avec Les Bons Voeux. Thireze makes some great stuff too. I would say Fantome but I have had too many DISGUSTING bottles over the years to real get behind them. Fantome is basically a 60% 40% crapshoot. 60% chance of being awesome and 40% chance of being garbage. I am all for bottle variation but at 15-20$ for a 750 ML I am not playing that game anymore.
  38. tendermorsel

    tendermorsel Initiate (0) Oct 22, 2006 Massachusetts

    Remember that strange Ghost that wasn't green? That's what I am talking about with Fantome! The Grassroots stuff I tried in London was damn good BTW.
  39. cfrances33

    cfrances33 Initiate (0) Jun 12, 2012 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Some highlights for me:
    1. Any HF saison, they are that good. Had Civil Disobedience 4 last night and it blew me away for a black saison.
    2. Only had the Fresh Hop Seizoen, but I echo bstyle that Logsdon seems to be making some really clean and delicious saisons right now. I'm definitely looking forward to Seizoen Bretta and Oak aged Bretta.
    3. Boulevard Saison-Brett. A classic.
    4. Not really a fan of the other things they do, but Jolly Pumpkin De Viento was a beautiful black saison.
    5. Sofie. Don't care about the In-Bev crap that people will spew at me for it, this is a great beer.
    bstyle, ILOVESTOUTS and fmccormi like this.
  40. fmccormi

    fmccormi Meyvn (1,331) Oct 24, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    I dunno. I just wish Pretty Things would put Jack D'Or into a smaller, cheaper format, like in a six-pack. Or better yet, in 500ml four-packs like Jack's Abby.

    Come to think of it, I wish a LOT of beers came in 500ml four-packs, and especially saisons would be great this way.
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