From Microbrasserie Le Castor in Rigaud Quebec comes their “Brett Zeste Saison”. The beer pours a cloudy orange with a white head. The aroma consists of lemon, citrus zest, mild brett funk and some sweetness. The flavour is of citrus zest, lemon, yeast, wheat, rye spice, pepper, herbs, resin, mild Brettanomyces and some bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 5%. This was a very interesting Saison and I would recommend picking up a bottle if you can find it.
Commercial Description: As spring breezes refresh our spirits and make us think of warmer months ahead, so too will this tribute to traditional Belgian farmhouse ales. Brewed with authentic saison & wild Brettanomyces yeasts, we have added a lot of citrus zest & juice to the mix. Throw in some cracked pepper, and classic rustic yeast character, and you’ve got a refreshingly dry companion to your summer thirst.
From Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub in Victoria BC comes the “Hummingbird Hop Saison”. The beer pours a golden colour with a good amount of haze and a white head. The aroma consists of wheat, yeast, citrus and grassy hops. The flavour is of wheat, yeast, citrus rind, citrus, pepper, maybe a little astringent, bitterness with a very dry finish. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 39. This is definitely more bitter than your average saison but it is pretty darn tasty.
Commercial Description: A West Coast take on a classic style. Brewed with Pilsner malt and oats this medium bodied beer balances the spicy characteristics of a saison with a pleasant bitterness an citrus note thanks to a blended, new world dry hop addition. The refreshingly dry finish will have you humming for more!
From Strange Fellows Brewing Company in East Vancouver comes their “Bayard Farmhouse Saison”. Check out the tasting panel I was part of for this beer at Whats Brewing magazine. The beer pours a golden colour with a white head with some retention. The aroma consists of citrus, orange, pepper and a citrus find in the finish. The flavour is of lots of citrus and tons of orange rind, pepper, herbal notes, crackery malts and a grassy and mild bitter finish. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 25. I enjoyed this beer but I found the citrus rind a little strong for my liking as it took on a bit of an odd bitterness.
Commercial Description: He’s back and better than ever! – Hero of many a legend, Bayard the horse perpetually outwits any attempt to control him & fearlessly blazes his own path. He symbolizes the free spirit not to be tamed. Wild by nature, this Saison is the happenstance of unique yeasts & bottle-conditioning, & is just the thing for celebrating the things we cannot control.
Food pairing as per brewery: Asian & Middle-Eastern cuisine, spicy, funky & creamy cheeses
From Steel Toad Brewpub in Vancouver comes their “Patio Saison”. The beer pours a cloudy orange colour with a white head. The aroma consists of peppery notes, lemon and yeast. The flavour is of pepper, spice, yeast, citrus, citrus rind with low bitterness levels. This beer is not super dry but it is also not overly sweet. The alcohol content comes in at 5% with an IBU of 25. Personally this is exactly what I am looking for in a good saison. you can pick up a growler fill right now at the brew pub.
Commercial Description: Citrus and pepper from the farmhouse ale yeast used in this beer dominate the palate. Unlike the traditional ultra dry beers typical of the saison style, this beer is brewed with a healthy quantity of flaked oats to give it a fuller body. This allows a lower alcohol content that makes this a perfect beer for sessions on the patio.
From Dunham Quebec’s Brasserie Dunham comes their “Saison Rustique”. The beer pours a straw yellow with a white head and some sediment. The aroma consists of wheat, spices, citrus, yeast and floral hops. The flavour is of wheat, spices, resin, mild citrus, lots of citrus rind and bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 6% with an IBU of 38. Not my favourite Saison but it is good example of the style.