I have been waiting literally, fucking, years to tick this elusive retired Golden Girl. In 2011 I had this Adam Jackson swerve where I wanted to hit all the HF offerings and no one in 2010 seemed to hang onto a Swingtop of this random saison offering. IMAGINE THAT. So I waited. Then I gave up.
So we have a dry hopped farmhouse ale, so far so good but how does this set itself apart from the litany of other Saisons in the HF lineup, longer than a list of Biblical kings. Well for starters this is probably one of the hoppiest Saisons that them Verde Mont boys have kicked out in a while. It almost reminds me of a muskier riff on Edward but with distinctively farmhouse roots.
The nose reminds me of montueka or mosaic hops, dry and earthy but a touch of romaine and lemon essence. It is hoppier on the nose than the taste would suggest and the taste follows suit with a lightly bitter opener akin to arugula or grapefruit pith, it sublimates into familiar territory with that distinctive Arthur/Anna aspect without the lemon and merengue going on. Instead it presents a sort of earthiness like doesjel or de Ranke XX bitter.
Ultimately this is a welcome refreshing entry that is like the “Herfst” to Anna’s Zomer. It isn’t as bright but feels more aserose and conifer in its panache. The carb is fantastic and the build quality of all HF Saisons is present, like when you buy a Ducati, regardless of the specs you know it is airtight engineering. This would be a fantastic gateway drug to your hophead friend who doesn’t know shit, and you want to help him to a life of fulfillment instead of ibu chasing.
Certainly worthy of your attention, particularly if you already enjoy the other entries in the series, this would be like Empire Strikes Back, some will call it their favorite and will make a compelling argument others may not agree with, but in the end it has undeniable complexity and charm.
FINAL jeopardy: it takes one of these to land Dorothy: