New Glarus Thumbprint Saison, Wisconsin Get Its Hand on The Farmhouse Style and Straight Up Fumbles


Let me say this at the outset, this is not a BAD saison. In fact, it is dead on and falls directly in line with what you would expect from an American take on the Belgian style. That is the whole problem, it is too predictable and ultimately is the most frustrating type of review to write because it is too conformist, too gentle, for some what would not even register as a bad thing, however, in the realm of top tier heavy hitters that we are addressing, this comes off as more of a sessionable belgian golden with aspects of saison interplay. Enough bitchassness and complaining, let’s get on this grizzy.

New Glarus always delivers, just sometimes not to my tastes.

New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States
Saison / Farmhouse Ale | 6.50% ABV

A: This is a beautiful beer, let’s just get that out of the way. The carbonation is not excessive and the lacing is pretty like nana’s doilie collection. There is a radiant golden hue to it that almost reminds me of a Belgian Tripel with some deep gold at the center. It looks refreshing and substantial at the same time like a Charlie Kaufman screenplay.

This is not an exceptionally dramatic saison.

S: This is where they bust out the cookie cutter and makes it fall in line with the ultra-predictable saisons and borderline, dare I say it, Hennepin levels. If we are looking for some crazy lactic element or a crazy blast of funk, this is not where you will hang your hat. You get a nice cornbread waft from it, a light spice, some very faint lemon rind, some banana but more like the yellow runts type of banana and finally a light grassiness.

T: This follows the nose almost congruently and presents the wheat and chewy bready aspect, some recumbent light spice, and closes with a honey meets sod sort of execution. Again, this is not bad at all, but you drink it, the glass is empty, and you carry on with your stamp collection. Nothing to really say about the lingering aspects or any level of ruminating necessary. For some people, the lack of impression might be the hallmark of a refreshing farmhouse ale. For me, this just kinda comes across like a John Hughes movie that isn’t memorable but is temporarily uplifting.

This is a sweet loving beer, but it might not executing things exactly as you hoped.

M: This has a light chewiness to it and a lingering honey finish to it but the refreshing watery aspect is the overriding aspect to this beer. I am not sure if this is sold in 4 packs but it seems to be less of a special occasion saison and more of a “I fucking hate my daughter’s dance recitals” sort of every day beer. In this aspect, it is phenomenal. Usually when I am opening a saison, it is caged and corked and feels like a substantial event, but this beer makes it more of an approachable glory hole where you don’t feel bad for wasting it.

D: If you missed it, this is exceptionally drinkable, but not necessarily the best saison evar. It is kinda like that person you rent Redbox movies with and make out with but know that there’s no lasting potential in this one. Wisconsin fanboys might lose their shit over this appraisal, but seriously go drink Squatters Fifth Element and tell me those two are comparable “but they are totally different beers” yeah I know, and I enjoy one more than another, zero fucks given.

Don’t think about it so hard, take it, put it in your face hole.

Narrative: Julia was never really tall for her age, or exceptionally intelligent for her grade. She not an unremarkable 5 feet 5 inches, shoulder length brown hair, enjoyed baking and flagging innocuous items on Pintrest. When she went to clubs, she would order a vodka soda and keep her composure and remain poised in an unnoteworthy Bebe dress. No one would fault Julia for not taking risks, some would applaud her conservative presentation. Her favorite book is 1984 and she enjoyed watching One Tree Hill. No one is saying that there is anything wrong with that. Somehow, on those lingering coffee dates, all of her courtesans would secretly long for something more deviant, something funky, acidic, or a hateful streak to compliment their own shortcomings. She was too supplicant for the general public for the simple reason that she was just what the world needed.

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