0

What if DDB Reviewed Another 3 Holy Mountain Beers, OH WAIT LOOK AT THIS

If Sante Adairius is the clear west coast analogue to Hill Farmstead, then Holy Mountain must certainly hold that banner for the PnW.  Some pundits will chime in and rattle my cage yelling about Upright, or if they suffered a recent head injury, Commons.  Upright is phenomenal and I intend on seeking out more of their continually awesome beers, but Holy Mountain is up to something…else.

This consistently awesome farmhouse/wild purveyor leaks out hot lil 300 bottle release gems on the regular, and locals selfishly drink them: WHAT THE HELL IS THAT ALL ABOUT?  Let’s catch up with them to see if things are still clipping along at the same high quality tenor from when we last checked in with them.

hm1

Misere Au Borinage

So this is a wheat grisette, foudre fermented with mixed cultures and then foudre aged.  I will allow your tumescence to subside before I continue.  If you walk into this thinking it is some Clara Chanel knock-off, you can have a seat and wait for the complexity of this gristy gem to set in.  This is at its core a table biere with a lightly lactic tartness, and this creamy brie spread to the coating that is endlessly fulfilling.  There is a jazz apple rind dryness to the light acidity that makes this frustratingly crushable, but the ample carb serves as a roadblock to all out decimation.  If you liked Lucybelle, you will love this.  It takes the accessible character and clean profile of Clara and adds depth and cheesy layers.  A lemongrass lingers on the bitter zones and begs for another sip like when you eat hot Cheetos and the only way to complete the flavor profile is with yet another handful of fiery decadence.

Good lawd.

hm4

Witchfinder

How ironic that a beer named Witchfinder tastes like a jankier version of Dorothy. Perhaps in this beer were aged in a Tin Man it would have more depth or nuance to speak of.  This was a let down in the scope of a brewery with an insane pedigree, that is to say, still above-average.  When you reach the point that you are a let down because the rest of your catalog is so damn good, you can cop that Tesla knowing your legacy is secure.  This is soft, boring, bitter, pilsner malts and some fucking Saaz. I don’t know what you were expecting.  Maybe you came in hoping for the Dry Hopped Dupont Cuvee and left clutching your ticket stub harder than when you saw MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2.

It is vegetal and crackery, it is not poorly made nor is it a benchmark of anything that already exists, it just isn’t that good.  You can seek out a Jester King Noble King and do far better without bruising your areolas from hop twisting.

BUT HANG ON:

hm2

Clarette

This right here though, this is some next level.  Rose stones in the bezel lookin like framboises. If last year’s show stopper was Barrel 7, this is the new hotness that essentially no one knew about except those covetous locals who smashed all of these low key and saved Clarette in their phones as a different name.  Side chick status to what should be a dime piece fruitbae.  This is a wild ale with cherries and raspberries done in an way that I have never encountered.  There is this crispness like sparkling mineral water added to Hommage.  It has the acidity and berry profile that is all skins, zero sugars left, depleted in that fantastic Appreciation way, but date I say, even better.  This has a chewisness and frothiness to balance its more acidic endeavors and in that way is akin to Casey Blackberry Cut in that it demonstrates about depth and restaint, like a well endowed berry burster that knows the inner staves of the tank all too well.

It’s almost a de facto punchline to tell you to seek out this marvelous 250 bottle release.  If you live and breathe in the Framboise realm, you will absolutely love this berry juicing, intensely dry Rose romp through the rose petals.  This is one of those must-obtain-for-completionist-sake bottles that you would be wholly negligent to overlook.

Also, have fun landing Clarette after this janky ass post.

1

These Brewers Gonna Make Me Unleash the Dragon: Passionate Dragon. Happy Barrel Aged Beer Day.

First thing’s first, happy Barrel Aged Beer Day, bump this in your lonely cubicle:

So after the shockwaves of Fundamental Observation continue to reverberate. the sweatjoweled world continues to await the sophomore release from these young OC upstarts. You might remember when I went to the Bruery anniversary and called Passionate Dragon the best beer of the entire festival, even better than Fundamental Observation.  So I went into this already knowing what type of dragon fist lay in store. Does this hold up in bottled format? Is there logic attendant to the bottle? From zero to R. Kelly, how much passion are we talking about in International Passion Units (IPUs)?

ALL QUESTIONS WILL BE ANSWERED.

So much embarrassment to take low fstop photos like this outside of the home.  Such shame.

So much embarrassment to take low fstop photos like this outside of the home. Such shame.

“Passion and dragon fruit saison aged in wine barrels. In collaboration with Arizone Wilderness Brewing, this saison is brewed with passion fruit, dragon fruit, Centennial kumquats, Rosemary, fresh bay leaves, and White Sonora Wheat. It’s a mouthful, we know, but this beer showcases our shared passion to push craft beer forward.”

Alright at the outset you may be thinking:
“DDB you give other breweries a raft full of shit for using adjuncts in a saison, suddenly your homer instincts kick in and these guys get a fukn pass?”

Well, allow me to temper those objections by stating: this beer is fucking amazing.  If you want to add pink peppercorns each lovingly rubbed on the urethral tip of a BJCP master, then go for it, so long as the beer is amazing. I read the description and was like “oh god damn it” but then knew the incredible pedigree of Arizona Wilderness and the calm set in.  Those comforting chest pets to relieve anxiety.

First and foremost, the bottled version of this wasn’t as trubby and jammy in its tannic turbidity as the draft version.  It turns out, the bottled version is way fucking better.  If you wanted a slurry fruit mess, call Pizza Boy. The brewers elected to blend and allow the final version to ferment longer, giving it more of a nuanced barrel characater, less smuckers, more tannins, more structure, and this inimitable lingering bay leaf menthol added to the fruit that lasts and lasts underscoring the oak saturation.  For this reason, you don’t get the cliche MAGENTA OMFG that newmoney kids lose their shit over, tasting with their eyes pell mell.

These labels are still admittedly busy and obnoxious. Raygun nostalgia with like 9 diagrams, 500 words of text: too fucking much going on.

These labels are still admittedly busy and obnoxious. Raygun nostalgia with like 9 diagrams, 500 words of text: too fucking much going on.

Another note is that this beer is a full 1%  abv over the draft version and much much drier as a result.  The alcohol is seamlessly integrated into the fruit and barrel presence in a scary way.  Usually this dryness is accompanied with some sausage fingered acetic aeration, intense tartness.  That is not the case here, this beer bangs like Rockford Fosgate subs in a bandpass box but never gets too intense or acidic.  It is without comparison of recent memory, a single foot planted hard in the saison realm without letting monoculture emphasis denature the experience.

The taste never jumps completely to rely upon fruits like a crutch, nor does it expect the spices to bail them outta county either.  As a result you have a hardened saison criminal, who is a bit fruity from the time in captivity but in that hard way that you just have to respect.  In terms of analogues, this is less a saison and more of a Biere de Garde.  The whole affair drinks like a fruited, less acidic, cleaner Biere de Norma. Yes, I realize the implications of stating that something with this many ingredients is better than a Hill Farmstead beer, I stand by it.  The shit is like 2 tabs of Demerol that starts out normal enough and suddenly your face is being attacked by the sidewalk.  You be gripping parking meters tripping not an insubstantial number of balls, tryna make it out of this fruited farmhouse alive.

The beer itself is inversely good to the quality of this shitty pic.

The beer itself is inversely good to the quality of this shitty pic.

If you went to the Stone Anniversary/Sourfest and had the immeasurably shittier “YOUNG DRAGON” rest assured, this is a completely different beer that stomps out that squad until they turn the lights on.  The nose is a phrenetic Hungry Hungry Hippos match wherein kumquat and tropical fruits compete with oak and lingering saison esters to gobble up your white BALs with their wanting maws.

The mouthfeel initially has a Welch’s Passionfruit juice that serves as an opening band to warm things up for the main event when the dry tannic skins spit hot bars over a kumquat instrumental. Bay leaf is in the back providing bitter structure with sick beatboxing.

This sold out immediately online and there was some degree of chaos from a unilaterally reschedule sale, switched to a Sunday morning.  I can foresee the degree of butthurt being noteworthy once the reviews for the bottled version start pouring in.  The sweet punishment of success, an ambrosial delight endemic to the beer industry.

All said, I enjoyed this more than Fundamental Observation and this beer brings something I seldom encounter in items with this much taking place concurrently: pirouettes of vinous balance. If this isn’t in the DDB top 10 of 2015 I would be surprised, you would be remiss to skip this one as I can’t identify a clear analogue in recent memory.

Electric currant: currant saison.  These guys continue to load shells into that bullpup ambidextrous cellar

Electric currant: currant saison. These guys continue to load shells into that bullpup ambidextrous cellar, stoked to see if these guys can sustain success beyond these first two homeruns.

We shall see.

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Hey It’s Friday, Let’s Review Four @oxbowbeer Farmhouse Beers. WHY NOT.

Maine has this odd beer scene that at one pole is the Northeast innovator of older days, and also a reactionary to what Vermont is currently producing. You have the consistent top notch work from Allagash, but you also have the likes of upstarts Bissell Bros and Austin Street brew company doing their own mixolydian riffs on the hoppy farmhousey doric scales from Vermont.

THAT GRIZZY GREEZY

THAT GRIZZY GREEZY

Oxbow shines best when it focuses in its realm of clear influence: shredding the high neck with saison solos. Their barrel aged pale ale was prison shanking unsuspecting palates in the shower and their draft lineups often don’t make it past state lines. Let’s take a look at some of their recent offerings to see what them ‘Bow boys be brewin.

Oxbow Grizacca Grisette 5.2% abv

I love liter sized grumblers but this is one instance where a two liter needs to be the mandatory format. The 33oz feels more like a comforting back massage without the full table shower. It is intensely clean and drillable, the hop profile steps aside and lets the lemony rustic cultures impart a dry lemon aspect that pulls tight head spins on the cardboard. It is simple and doesn’t have any real grist or heft to the mouthfeel which would be nice if you had a touch of that creamy wheat character but, as it stands it is a lemon orange carbonated Gatorade that you can drill during your shift at CiCi’s pizza. No one expects you to be sober at that job anyway.

feided

feided

Crossfade

With the barrel aged pale ale, oxbow proved that they were competent Brewers and blenders in the Wallonian realm. This beer drags their catalog backwards into obscured mediocrity. It is by no means bad, but chances are you have some 10bbls local upstart doing this same shit.

Kool Mo Dee fade.

Kool Mo Dee fade.

It is wiped out, watery, not especially complex, bitter and herbaceous, with a mild tart sweet tarts aspect to the finish. You can live your entire life, miss this, and your wife will still have an Ashleymadison account. This beer changes nothing and is of little circumstance.

Shit was aiite.

Shit was aiite.

Saison dell’argosta

Alright time to romp into a strange salty realm not unlike a Craigslist casual encounter. This is a clean, Low abv saison brewed with maine lobsters. That is about as Maine as you can get just short of a used Stephen King condom filled with autumn leaves. If you have tried Jester King snorkel, you basically have already had this shit. It is insanely drinkable and the touch of salinity only lends to chain combos, cascading your palate into the sky with no recourse.

Shared this with the boys at Highland Park Brewing. Zero ragrets.

Shared this with the boys at Highland Park Brewing. Zero ragrets.

These beers made with exotic proteins make headlines but the vast majority of snails, oysters, bulls testicles, whatever, are just unfermentable solids that contribute calcium profile, some alkaline and salt. That’s about it. Drop an alka seltzer into a Stone saison if you need to approximate this bubbly crisp experience.

In sum this lobster pot is incredibly delicious and refreshing, get your CLAWS in one before it TAILS it out of here.

beer not for gardeing

beer not for gardeing

Liquid swords

For all their mastery of the traditional saison game, Oxbow has piss running down its leg when it comes to Biere De Gardes. This french style eludes so many breweries and it is even harder to define the realm of good and bad beyond pointing to “acetic bad” and “Sans culottes good.” This Amber affair doesn’t have the red wine vinegar trappings of some amateur shit, they knew what they were doing, it just didn’t turn out that well.

I mean, it's alite.

I mean, it’s alite.

First and foremost, the body is too watery, splishy splashy, lacking that candy caramel complexity and red delicious you probably are craving. Secondly I am assuming oxbow has a hard ass water profile because it is lightly copper and metallic.

To approximate this experience, get some BFM Abbaye du St Bin Chien, add water to it, let it sit for an hour. Or just ask OEC for one of their jankest barrels.

Oxbow is clipping along with some hits, some mediocre whiffs, but no clear failures.  That’s more than some breweries can say at this juncture.

6

Cuvee Dry Hopping 2015 @brewerydupont : These dudes are gonna get sued by Crooked Stave for using the word Vielle

DDB putting up hot reviews back to back like we on the cover of Lethal Weapon:

rattattatatin on that like Nick Cannon with the snare drum

rattattatatin on that like Nick Cannon with the snare drum

Dupont enjoys one of the most intense disparity in fan bases. It is a perfect inverted bell curve of appreciation by people just getting into beer, and end game beer nerds who are too jaded to like anything but the staples with which they began. The allure of classic green glass, simple caged and corked majesty. These beers hold inherent appeal to grocery store ballers who are just separating their tether from the realm of Rogue and Lagunitas riffs.

I love this stage of beer discovery because it can largely shape and affect future palates if they choose to spec their character with a farmhouse load out in lieu of the old Rasputin tank or Chimay mages. Dupont offers fantastic accessible staples of the saison world that continue to shape consumers and tastes year after year.

Invariably beer nerds transfer their nascent palates from grocery store to bottle shop to brewery only to nano to fedex until they hate all beer. Like a tightly crafted screenplay, dupont always returns in the third act like the good guy in a romcom who was the perfect choice all along. If you want to take a litmus test of where a beer dork is at in the spectrum you can ask them about DuPont and tell immediately in what esteem they hold their unreproachable opinions.

Cant fool these tickers they know what's up, haters say DDB dont write enough, in the brewery getting shoulder rubs

Cant fool these tickers they know what’s up, haters say DDB dont write enough, in the brewery getting shoulder rubs

I would say the majority of DDB readers fall squarely in the middle to end game demographic so reviewing any DuPont offering seems like some low hanging fruit for which I will receive endless complaints from my fedex pimping contingency, I am ok with that.

So today we have the dry hopped cuvee of the standard DuPont saison. A slightly more rare spin on the old standby, let’s service both holes and poles in today’s review.

Here’s their commercial rubdown:

“Every year a special batch of Saison Dupont makes its way out into the world. Saison Dupont Cuvee Dry Hopping is a unique spring on a classic favorite. For 2015, Olivier chose the famous English hop Minstrel, a blend of the renowned Cascade and Sovereign varieties. Brewed only once, this is a chance to taste an exquisite and refreshing Saison with herbal tones and notes of fruity spice. The dry hopping creates accentuated floral, spice and citrus notes all on top of the classic base beer you’ve come to love. Being experimental, only a very limited supply is released just once per year, so you’ll have to be quick to find it”

The carb on this is somewhere between excessive to apeshit. Like seriously, no one needs this much effervescence, it looks like a malfunctioning clothes washer spewing foamy with no regard for your desires. I went and listened to a full Descendants album and 24 minutes later it was ready for drinking. The cling absolutely destroys the glass with residual malt, leaving it looking like some overdone haunted house with arachnid webbing strung akimbo.

The 2014 cuvee used challenger hops...for some reason. Not my favorite but IM NOT THE BOSS OF BELGIUM.

The 2014 cuvee used challenger hops…for some reason. Not my favorite but IM NOT THE BOSS OF BELGIUM.

The nose is dry and floral, more so than the standard riff. It has a leafy arugula and sappy aserose note that plays beautifully with the Anjou pear and biscuity goodness of the base saison.

The taste is even more dry than the nose if that is scene possible. It crackles with life like estery pop rocks leaving clove and banana in equal measure with lemongrass and unripe mango. For every ISO out there for Dorothy and Lattice, this just sits longingly awaiting the casual embrace. Yes I know this isn’t barrel aged but the simplicity in execution doesn’t seem to warrant it. It is more of a Buster Keaton performance that stands on its own classic laurels without wordplay or nuance.

If you backslide to noob territory or climb to the peak of being completely jaded by beer, this classic beer waits for you at restaurants and sitting in the Hyvee cooler. You can drink it and your life won’t be any worse for the wear, maybe you can spend all that saved money on orthopedic shoes for your kid or that Invisalign that your girlfriend keeps mentioning. The world is your economical oyster.

the carboard rave flyer is not for trade.  ULTER RAER

the carboard rave flyer is not for trade. ULTER RAER

EDITORS NOTE: In case it was unclear: Crooked Stave is not going to sue Dupont.

Trinity might sue Dupont though for using the word “provision”

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DARK MEAT ALERT: @hillfarmstead Civil Disobedience 12, CHARLIE MURPHY SAISON EXPLOITS

Clipping right along in the realm of being disobedient and uncivil, we get the notorious “dark saison 4th release” entry in the canon: Civil Disobedience 12. Every fourth bottle in this series is an iteration of a dark saison/wild ale and usually leads to polarizing reviews as the average bourbon county coveter two years fresh out of undergrad has no business fucking with black Saisons. Maybe no one does.

Let’s get a taste of that black tar in today’s review.

DDB is down with brown town

DDB is down with brown town

Hill Farmstead, Vermont (oh no way)
Black blended barrel aged saison aka that BBBaS, 8.1%abv, I made all this up. No one reads this.

Hold on to your uncircumsized cocks for the spoiler alert of the year: this saison is dark. It pours with perfect carb, bubbling upward with silky mocha frap crema, looking more like a bottle of Everett at first glance. It has minimal cling and sheets in a slick watery way, running that dark dress upwards indicating the acidic experience contained therein.

Post full size because Trady complained about small pics/penis

Post full size because Trady complained about small pics/penis

The nose is the collision of two odd worlds destroying themselves in a fruit meets chocolate singularity. The blackest of holes. You get a sort of tangerine and clementine with red wine oak at the outset but wait for the beat to drop, 160bpm waves of cocoa and nestle quik Rush in quickly behind with this discordant cacophony of conflicting olfactory zones. Some people love this type of shit: the Pipeworks Orange abduction, HF daybreak and to a lesser extent BCBS bramble fall in this mixed bag of dark malty hatred. I can’t get on board with it and my prejudices against these types of beers are well documented so take my impressions with a chocolate fondue slice of navel orange.

The taste carries more of a vinous character and pushes chocolate milk meets Bordeaux, creamy acidity itself feeling like an inherent contradiction throughout. Again, some people open up incognito tabs and grind that coffee bean to these types of beers and I don’t understand that deviant behavior. I don’t like tart of darkness and the vast majority of dark wilds or black saisons. If you like this space docking of malty chocolate foreskin rolling over acidic fruit, then by all means.

I just hope this big dark girth is enough to Trady standards

I just hope this big dark girth is enough to Trady standards

If you loved Edith, you will think this is dope as fuck. It is well attenuated and for a highly-attenuated audience. Oh shit peep that parallel structuring. While I loved Cd4, and was fairly jazzed about cd8, this falls closer to the realm of Jim/Jimmy in HF offerings I wouldn’t actively seek out.

Like all things, HF had the misfortune of inherently being compared to their own body of work so it feels like being the Pitchfork Media asshole who criticizes Mars Volta for doing something polarizing and experimental. It is unquestionably well made but feels like those spacey malty tracks that go on forever and it loses me.

Drink dark saisons, acquire new powers

Drink dark saisons, acquire new powers

What should you drink instead of this? If you are dead set on this style, you could go with Edith, the Nightmare on Brett series, Guillermo Prunus/etc, one of the oddball Sara dark saison offerings like farmhouse noire, or something in that same realm.

Like Phish, the people who love this ridiculous shit will love it so hard that no one else will need to deal with it. And that is fine, have your chocolate covered grapes and 9 minute guitar solos, leave me out of it.

boosting on them dark malts, dropped E tanks

boosting on them dark malts, dropped E tanks

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The Ultimate Farmhouse Voltron @Hillfarmstead Civil Disobedience 11, The Saison Megazord

Alright, keeping things on track with arguably the whaliest beer that HF has ever made outside of Ann, is this staggering amalgamate of the best the saison world has to offer.  At ~300 bottles, 1 per person, this caused a massive rift in the trading community and the butthurt was palpable, salty alligator tears rolling down Dorito dusted beards. So what is the deal with this FINAL BOSS GOD TIER FARMHOUSE LOOT? This is like post-game optional quest level shit here:

“Composed of Anna aged in barrels that previously held Mimosa, E., and Juicy, blended with Anna that was aged in barrels that previously held Civil Disobedience 3 and 5. Delicate, elegant, complex, and effervescent.”

Does it seriously get any better than that? Those are like nocturnal emissions mixed with microflora. Let’s get down to this rustic ratchet in today’s review.

Got musky emo tears, beer looking like a bowl of oranges

Got musky emo tears, beer looking like a bowl of oranges

Hill Farmstead, Vermont (you know this already)

Blended BA saison, abv? Let’s call it 7.69%

This beer also gushed like an obese kid who lost a full dress size at fat camp. It spilled all over my tiny hovel making my shoddy granite work redolent of Vermontean esters.  The carb notwithstanding, this pours intensely orange and the whole pour feels like a PS1 cut scene where for a moment things are far less shitty, and you know it simply wont last.  It has fantastic cling and sheets rings the entire way down as though it had a modicum of spelt boosting those unfermentable solids.  Svelte, radiant, oddly beautiful like Emma Stone in BIrdman.

Look at me.  Look at me. I am the saison captain now.  I am the farmhouse captain.

Look at me. Look at me. I am the saison captain now. I am the farmhouse captain.

The nose continues the pageantry in a way that is unparalleled by even Shaun Hill standards.  In the struggle for their own dominance over their own product this grip the tail of Ann and the throat of Art and co-dominance is established like some acidic alleles contributing this master race phenotype.  I hope you didn’t fail high school biology, otherwise Ctrl+T that shit. There is intense orange, grand marnier meets cut construction paper, wet Jansport backpacks, bikes in the rain covered in Donald Duck orange juice, crushes leaves, bittering conifer aspects on the closer and this sweetly acidic finish like a Jamba Juice peach dream.  It is frustratingly enticing to a fault.

Hit that bottle spread eagle, label cocked open like that Jordan logo

Hit that bottle spread eagle, label cocked open like that Jordan logo

The taste is creamy orange julius from the mall with brett C funk contributing an aged cheddar cheesiness to the gumline, the most refined acidity this side of BA Cellarman, crisp anjou pear dryness on the swallow that lingers with a clementine pithy bitterness.  It is orange and cuties through and through with massive cascading waves of bitterness, acidity and funk like LED lights at a TRAP show contributing to full immersion.  There is a touch of imperfect honey sweetness that is perceptible that has a sweet meets mineral character, but this is literally the only fault I can detect after assiduously prying apart this entire 750ml solo.

Liquefy this photo in its purest platonic form and imbibe it

Liquefy this photo in its purest platonic form and imbibe it

In sum this is the pinnacle of the HF catalog and only Ann and Art can stand as coherent rivals to this crown.  It easily stands in the top 10 best saisons I have ever had in my life and I can’t imagine someone walking the razors edge of funk, musk, acidity, and drinkability.  It takes the best aspects of all prior saisons and unites them in defiance of a composition fallacy that I had ready to toss like critical shurikens.  One guy wanted Fou + Hommage for this bottle 2:1 and, while this will rock the Belgian lambic-curator dipshits to their core, it is hands down worth it,  It exists as a pinnacle of the most nuanced of genres and flat out runs at even clip with the best lambics I have ever had.

Past and present progressive  rusticity

Past and present progressive rusticity

Writing favorable reviews is shitty, but I have to doff my coal dusted Dickensian cap when shit operates on this tier.

0

I Went to the @smogcitybeer Black Currant Saison Release and Didn’t Even Die Once

If you have been keeping pace with old DDB, you know that I have been riding Smog City’s recent releases like a bucking sybian.  When they announced that they were doing a black currant saison, I got fully torqued and had to go to the ER after I had an erection that lasted longer that 4 hours.

The place was packed but there was an alarming paucity of neckbeards, much to my dismay

The place was packed but there was an alarming paucity of neckbeards, much to my dismay

I showed up late like an asshole and the place was packed.  Even with several pouring stations, the brewery has been picking up steam and there was a dearth of beta casuals and normal people.  The average BMI was well below 35, which is pretty disappointing, but I guess normal adjusted people need to drink beer too.

The kumquat saison was pretty pithy and oily, tart and akin to SitR Kumquat, but with a more watery finish.

The kumquat saison was pretty pithy and oily, tart and akin to SitR Kumquat, but with a more watery finish.

I walked in like an entitled dipshit with a magnum of Equipoise and for some reason people lose their fucking minds when you have a large format beer, even if it is barely a mag. People were all touching on it like Johnny Gill at a New Edition concert.

I was trying to snap pics of that dreamboat in the back but this delicious mixed fermentation saison got in the way

I was trying to snap pics of that dreamboat in the back but this delicious mixed fermentation saison got in the way

Equipoise was legit and ultra refreshing since the tasting room’s temperature was somewhere just north of hot as balls. Didnt really get any melon, faint brackish aspect to it, crisp and cheesy, I could merk the entire 1.5L and not even feel bad about myself.  I mean, I would feel bad about myself for other reasons, the usual ones.

The 240 bottles of this beer sold out instantly. Fucking typical.

The 240 bottles of this beer sold out instantly. Fucking typical.

When I saw the jammy magenta hues looking like a Lisa Frank binder I braced myself for some Smuckers extravaganza, but god damn it is this beer phenomenal.  It is dry, tart, tannic, bursting with blackberry jelly and acidic black cherry skins.  It toes the line of exceptional balance that you find in VSB and SHBRL where it is fruit forward without being overly sweet or cloying.  God damn it, this beer slays on many levels.  It is hardly a saison and puts a distinct American Wild Ale foot forward.  I would have enjoyed more brett C or musk from this, but at this point it’s like being angry about the spoiler on your Murcielago. Pithy ass complaints from a beer dipshit.

They were taking that world class Barrel Aged OE and making Old Fsahioneds with it.

They were taking that world class Barrel Aged OE and making Old Fsahioneds with it.

I fucking love BA OE, but that is already well established. When I saw they were making cocktails with it, my initial reaction was eye rolling and images of foodie dipshits trying to bridge the gap into the baller ass beer world.  I was wrong again.  They took the dank ass barleywine, added bitters, and flambeed an orange peel to open up both the bourbon aspects and underscore this awesome Grand Marnier/Sweet Brandy sort of interplay.  The beer was sadly degassed through the treatment but ZFG because the drink was awesome. Being a skeptical asshole did not pay me any dividends on this outing.

I usually facepalm when someone brings up "beer cocktails" but I will give this a pass because it was fucking delicious.

I usually facepalm when someone brings up “beer cocktails” but I will give this a pass because it was fucking delicious.

The whole event was dope, but then to polish things off they busted out their barrel aged imperial coffee stout, Infinite Wishes.  While I thought “The Nothing” was underwhelming, this takes shit to a whole different level.  It is substantial, frothy, hefty, and delivers a wallop of bakers chocolate and deep dry roast.  While I used to be indifferent to Smog City’s core offerings, their new barrel room releases are causing me to trip not an insubstantial amount of balls.

Peep those low ass fstop values oh fuuuuu

Peep those low ass fstop values oh fuuuuu

I can’t go to the May 30th release, someone send me that shit already.

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@councilbrewing Beatitude Set ROUND ONE: Mango, Pineapple, Blueberry, no boils, no stems no seeds no sticks

God damnit I am sick of getting messages about this shit already.  Instead of doing a full on cagematch with these, I figured an FAQ format would be better to address these bottles since people have SO. MANY. FUCKING. questions.  Let’s just get into the meat and start braising this osso bucco.

Only three of these are out right now, the other three to follow shortly. Fire up your Dominos pizza app and get in the chill zone

Only three of these are out right now, the other three to follow shortly. Fire up your Dominos pizza app and get in the chill zone

Council Brewing

Fruited American Biere Du Pays with Monocultures Added, 3.8% abv

Mango, Pineapple, Blueberry

I am lazy as fuck, which one is the best so I can supplement my self esteem with a completionist verve, but then not have to try them all?

That’s a strange question, but I will allow it.  I thought mango was the best, followed by pineapple and blueberry following last as the most predictable in execution.  The mango and pineapple have this effervescent quality that crackles with vibrant acidity and hard mineral character like baller ass perrier variants.  The acidity isnt purely lactic nor is it needlessly excoriating.  These are endlessly crushable, to a fault really.  I wanted to take fatter pulls to embrace the paper thin body and bone dry resonance.  It finishes crisp like biting into an Anjou pear and doesn’t linger.  You could destroy the whole set on a weeknight and not need a GI referral in the morning, if we are being completely honest.  The blueberry while having the same appeal of the two, missed the mark in terms of original execution and was more of a table beer version of JK Colour Five, still good but like sex after 9 years of marriage, utterly predictable the positions it puts you in.

What were the releases figures on this first set so I can lowball as hard as possible?

There were 270ish bottles of each variant sold on a silent release during a weekday that sold out in 3 hours.  Two per person were allowed after the 3 per person was getting drilled on like an offshore BP platform.  $14 each. If you want to look like a profiteering asshole, offer up like a single Vanilla Rye for the whole set, I dont give a shit.

Third place, but still a tasty treat.

Third place, but still a tasty treat.

Why Am I So Poor?  Why Do I feel like $14 is Expensive for a 750ml bottle?

You may have been afflicted with DeGardiditis wherein you now feel like any 750ml that costs more than $6 is a complete rip off.  Or you may think you have some homebrewing experience and you immediately point your greasy roll of nickels finger at the 3.8% abv and start mumering “erhm production cosshttts” or something.  This isn’t a second runnings beer, it’s not just a dupont strain and some capri suns squeezed into the brite tank.  I don’t know why you are so miserly, if 14$ is too much for you, maybe take up cloud/bird watching or one of the innumerably cheaper hobbies.

The Carb Looks a Little Low In These Pictures, I Like to Assume Shit-

Those pours were from draft and sat for a few minutes while we talked, you know, that thing you used to do before logging in badges on Untappd like an obsessive self documenting alcoholic.  Those days.  People have told me the carb on the bottles is legit.

This was my favorite, but most people like pineapple more. WHAT DOES OLD DDB KNOW N E WAYZ

This was my favorite, but most people like pineapple more. WHAT DOES OLD DDB KNOW N E WAYZ

What Does the label say, I am bad at Googling, pls.

Beatitude is the French word for bliss which is what we float away on whenever we enjoy this specially brewed beer. Although this Tart Saison is brewed in the historical Wallonian tradition of other low gravity, tart farmhouse ales, the magic happens when our house blend of Brettanomyces, Lactobacillus and Saison yeast throw an out-of-this-world party in our fermenters. Aged  on various fruits and bottled with precision and care – this yields a beer with a lacto forward nose, an intensely tart fruit flavor, a doughy complexity from our no-boil process, and takes the word “refreshing” to a whole new level.”  There you go.

When Do The Next Three Deviants Come Out So I Can Do Some Demonstrative Shit Like Opening All Six in My Backyard to Impress My Yu Gi Oh Friends?
Probably in like four weeks, I have no idea.  I have sand dollar nipples and a wordpress site, the fuck do I know.

Hey I read everything you wrote but I am still going to message you and ask for your REAL OPINION is that ok would that be good for you DDB?

I fucking hate this so much.

A pour of that size is not long for this world.

A pour of that size is not long for this world.

My Friend is a certified beer server and he said because of the ABV these are actually berliners

That wasn’t a question but please, just shut the fuck up.  You have no idea what you are talking about.  Let’s get this out of the way: these do not taste like saisons.  Sure they have a low abv and are fruited but these are not berliners either.  Look at the yeast strains, how in the fuck could you consider these berliners? Due to the no boil (they bring the temp up to 180 degrees, they dont just shake it in a sack with some DME) this has some residual grist to the swallow but again, its hard to pick out because these are POST MENOPAUSAL OSTEOPEROSIS BONE DRY. My best characterization would be “American Fruited Biere Du Pays with monocultures added” which I can only assume will be a GABF category next year.

I usually just read to the bottom of the things you say and look at the pictures, so should i get these seriously tho?

If you can only get one, most people like Pineapple the most, and yes you really should try it.  There is not a clear analogue in my mind for someone doing things in quite this way and its not fair to really compare them to De Garde beers across the board either.  These are really fucking tasty and OH NO YOU MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO SHARE THEM TWELVE WAYS. Holy fuck imagine drinking a whole 3.8% 750ml to yourself, wow 2015 is a bold new year.

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BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes) XV (√225 Saison) – Math nerds cupping them swiss saison racks

I sometimes have to field dumbshit complaints like “you never review beers I have heard of,” or “where is your KBS review? I need to know, plz, DDB captainsaveaho” and then I lol and drop 900 words on another obscure farmhouse beer because, this site ain’t bout that basic bitch shit. We aren’t on doing Frozen “LET IT GO” covers and posting instagram pics of us at Coachella listening to Lorde and shit. Go to another trifling beer site for that, there are plenty.

So today we have an ultra-legit top 50 saison that I have been longing for, ArchEnemy hooked this up. Apparently people in the PNW dont want to drop $30 on a weird looking “18 century ale.” MOAR FOR ME. Today we finna huff that Swiss Mist, tickers be like “SwizzySwizzy when your saison droppin?”

I was gonna chope this bitch up, but then I realized I might not tick this again. BOY WOULD MY FACE BE RED.

I was gonna chope this bitch up, but then I realized I might not tick this again. BOY WOULD MY FACE BE RED.

BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)
Switzerland
Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale | 5.00% ABV

A: This rolls out of the bottle like a broken dishwasher spraying luminous foam all over the place, attenuated as fuck, that 90% strain just working those malts like a laquered floor at Magic City. Those straw red bottoms are clacking at the top of the saison pole and the webbing looks like Peter Parker just re-upped his subscription to Brazzers. The whole affair is turbid like a roll in the hay and the haze looks like someone is smoking dro in a tanning bed. The whole thing is dirty and fulfilling, like watching 3 hours of Nostalgia Critic and lying about it.

Beers like this are strange, but somehow you respect them because you know they mean business.

Beers like this are strange, but somehow you respect them because you know they mean business.

S: This is incredddddibly musky. Holy shit, I can only imagine how this tiny 5% abv ramped up and boosted out this huge acidic cheesy nose. You get some lemongrass, jamba juice rinds, The brett takes top billing and dips hard, accenting the acidity from the wild aspects of this yeast. This is chunky and dry, acidic curds and whey, lemon meringue cornbread cooling on the windowsill, and then you gotta change your Anchor Blue jeans because you just farmhoused so hard.

T: This takes the acidic nose and takes the cheesiness and funk to gruyere levels. The musk is like the Brabantiae of the saison world and I wish I had an old ass bottle of this, top tier farmhouse ale no question. The middle is a touch of breadiness and biscuit, with a sharp cheddar rind dryness and this pithy orange/grapefruit peel finish. It is incredibly dry and leaves a linger herbal creaminess along the gumline like you just sucked off a Shaman, but you are ok with it, because you finna tick. Incredibly complex beer on the nose and the mouth, call an ENT and get some biopsies done.

You pop this beer and a sense of urgency rolls over you.

You pop this beer and a sense of urgency rolls over you.

M: This is creamy not unlike Ete, but imparts an intense dryness from the musk and funk. The FG on this must be like negative platos, anti matter sucking all nether-malts into the void. It is acidic but so balanced in the approach that you can chain these hard, 750ml is a LOL serving size and the 5% abv just gets your all excited and it ends suddenly. You can guzzle this, the carb doesn’t slow you down, the acidity doesn’t dry you out, the musk isn’t cloying, and the thin body isn’t substantial enough to fill you up. THIS IS A ROBOT SAISON THAT CANNOT BE REASONED WITH. I don’t know if Wallonia would give this a full nod, farms all on the sides of the alps like Snowboarder Kids [fn1 – N64] but in the end it is just fucking delicious and if this was a true 18th century ale, I would not have gotten jack shit harvested or planted. I would have been all swerved in Zurich chopping up Roussean flows; what were we even talking about-

D: See above and make a quick inference whether this is exceptionally drinkable. This is a top tier saison for sure and I wish it would either 1) be more available or 2) dipshit tickers who secretly love AWA would leave beers like this alone. My site isn’t helping my cause by exposing saisons on the reg to stoutmouthed masses. It is a double edged sword, I want to show the world the new way i found out how to touch myself but then everyone steals my bit. So if you like wild ales and ultra acidic lambics, go drink those and leave us poor farmhouse drillers to our provincial toil. I can’t have it both ways, I can’t both praise beers like this and then continually rip on people who seek out KBS and black note like they are whales. The plaintive truth is that the second the 2013 wave of tickers moves to the next evolution of their palates they are gonna babyboom the fuck out of the farmhouse world. Draining our resources, not paying into the system, you know. Let’s just hope these newbz still think saisons are all Red Barn and Hennepin for the time being. Let us pray.

Tired of hearing dipshits argue over stout values? Drink saisons. It's basically like calling Social Services for your liver.

Tired of hearing dipshits argue over stout values? Drink saisons. It’s basically like calling Social Services for your liver.

Narrative: Jacob Donalds surveyed the contents of his spacious “cellar” and nodded in calm approval. The northwest corner of his parent’s basement in northern Ohio was his palatial estate, racks upon racks of IKEA shelves with bottles upon bottles of stouts and porters distributed nationwide. While submitting resumes on Monster.com he would take brief breaks to run his finger along his collection of Stone IRS bombers, lovingly caressing the cardboard boxes from each of his Parabola mainstays, kept in perpetual slumber. There was seldom a time that he did not mention his age when presenting this opulent stash, “NOT BAD FOR A 24 YEAR OLD RIGHT?” he would importune to his uncaring friends. Still, when the sun would dip low across the insubstantial horizon, he felt a panging and a hollow emptiness that perhaps he was not the most knowledgeable person in the entire world. His self image was affirmed regularly by his 134 person Facebook group and the accolades that followed upon posting photos of 2 bottles of Abyss were not insubstantial. Still, while running his fingertips over bottles and bottler of BCBS there was a vision of a higher calling, a more perfect style, as high as the Swiss alps, as refreshing as a kumquat harvest, running barefoot across fields in northern france. For now he would content himself to chocolates and coffees, for to embrace the unknown was to lay prostrate to a tradition of history whose power lay not in starting platos, but finish gravity.

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@santeadairius West Ashley, This Beers Gets More Tickers off Than Cochran

Alright so changing gears from a Vermont 300 bottle release, let’s peep game on this 300 bottle pre-wale from the west coast Hill Farmstead. Sante Adairius is a hot new brewery running the trap, slanging farmhouse ales, and dropping low bottle count beatdowns on the trade boards. Also, their product is 99.3% pure, that all blue Jesse Pinkman blend. So in today’s review we have a rare+saison+apricot+wildale+unzip pounding things out without remorse. Bay area kids were hella stoked on this and clutch them for good reason, this beer sets my apricots ablaze with careless abandon.

No filter. Srs.  Just look at the inside of Marcellus Wallace's briefcase.

No filter. Srs. Just look at the inside of Marcellus Wallace’s briefcase.

Sante Adairius Rustic Ales
California, United States
American Wild Ale | 7.30% ABV

A: This is that goon shit, mess up your whole afternoon shit. Just take a look at that burning fireball above, it is like looking directly into Beatrice while in paradiso. That isn’t a play on words because Beatrice may or may not be the base beer for this, it is just that radiant and melts your impure soul to take in those bright orange/tangerine/pure sunlight. The wispy carbonation crackles away like a piccolo pete and leaves no real lacing to speak of, but who is really speaking of lacing anyway? If you said grade A microcock beer nerds, you are correct.

If you are ever feeling down, lil Westy Ash will come through and puck you hard, but gently.

If you are ever feeling down, lil Westy Ash will come through and puck you hard, but gently.

S: This reminds me of Logsdon Oak Aged Bretta scissoring Beatification’s thighs raw with a musky funk, tart apricot meets Fou Foune’s effeminate brother. The acidity doesn’t get in the way and you get this watery dog groomer’s air about it that the fruit supports nodding in the background on a 2/4 beat. There isn’t a ton of cheesiness or elements in the way of Cantillon/De Cam/Boon, nor is the acidity as harsh, but this is its own jam. Selfmade millionaire wild ale poppin that .45 acidity at haterzzz.

T: This is the absolute perfect beer for summertime. Take that floral/tart aspect from Ithaca Brute and add some apricot tannins and you have a massively drinkable beer that doubles as titty elixir for Yacht parties since this beer is balling outrageous. The tartness doesn’t go overboard and instead serves to compliment the hay/leather dryness, it wilds the fuck out like Bobby Bouchet. The fruit again is just mindblowing and links arms in the same realm as Fantasia (batch 1, not that brett bomb b2) Peche n Brett, Persica, and to a lesser extent, Fou Foune.

This new banger straight drops the mic on the AWA game.

This new banger straight drops the mic on the AWA game.

M: This is drying at the outset with the apricot leading first but it has this murky waterines to it that washes so clean it leaves a sweet apricot life saver flavor that lingers and not unlike a Brazzer’s actor, you gotta get your mouth on it once more. I could crush these without remorse, the apricot jury would deem me an unsympathetic Ashley mass murderer. I love the careful tartness because it allows the underlying saison elements (which are fantastic) to show off in a manner more approachable and ultimately satisfying than say, Upland Peach, which is the acidity show in execution.

D: To double down on everything else that I have mentioned, this is scary drinkable and the ABV is not only present but this beer straight up feels GOOD for you. Like you conscience wouldn’t kick in drinking this before a funeral or a classy bris. The jamba juiciness keeps things lively but the oaky dryness lets you know the refined MILF will also enjoy this as well, inbetween her sips of Yellow Tail Moscato. Get this, actually dont, I need more, so don’t seek this out. Don’t ruin this shit for the rest of me.

This beer is original, vibrant, and fucking mind blowing

This beer is original, vibrant, and fucking mind blowing

Narrative: Life at the Behr paint supply store was a mile a minute. Sure there was the time that they accidentally mixed turpentine with the eggshell, making the ignominious muted halogen color, completely off style but mindblowing nonetheless. Yes sir, Ashley West had seen it all in her duties as overseer of the interior vibrant tones division of Behr paints. It was her sworn duty to ensure that no paint scheme stood as too far fetched or offputting. Nothing escaped her trained penchant for searingly bright colors. If she saw a mild yellow that struck hier as too explosive, she’d be the first one to take it down a couple notches to a sublimely genial canary tone. For Ashley, life was all about the Golden Mean, in the Arisotelian sense, the paradigm of good taste. “Miss, do these sandstone swatches look appro-” “ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Look at this, I’m sorry, where are we the Luxor casino? You need to mute these down to C11H14 palate, we don’t run some kind of funhouse, you can take these monstrocities down to Tempera paints Mr. Jackson Pollack if you feel like expressing yourself on my KHAKI WATCH!” Another solid day of work for Ashley West.