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General Category => Commercial Beer Reviews => Topic started by: bigchicken on August 30, 2013, 12:31:18 AM

Title: Commercial Saisons
Post by: bigchicken on August 30, 2013, 12:31:18 AM
My new home has no basement, so I plan to try brewing some beers I can ferment on the high side, such as a Saison. Problem is, I can't remember having a commercial version before. I want to find some versions to try that I can then try to brew. So, what are your favorite Saisons and have you found or created a comparable recipe?
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: lornemagill on August 30, 2013, 02:23:58 AM
try hennepin by ommegang.  its one of my favorites.  or wait 3 months, wont it be cool in nebraska
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: bigchicken on August 30, 2013, 02:47:48 AM
try hennepin by ommegang.  its one of my favorites.  or wait 3 months, wont it be cool in nebraska

Oh yeah, I'll be brewing plenty this winter. Unfortunately, my stock is low enough now I need to (gasp!) buy beer! I can't stand it!  :D
I figured the heat would be a good enough excuse to try to brew something different than I'm used to brewing.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: erockrph on August 30, 2013, 03:58:03 AM
If you can get a fresh, unskunked Saison DuPont, that's probably the gold standard. Boulevard Tank 7 is a damn good example as well. I know Ommegang markets Hennepin as a Saison, but they use their house yeast strain as opposed to a true saison strain, so it ends up tasting more like a Belgian Golden to me.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: rainmaker on August 30, 2013, 09:19:45 PM
Lots of solid samples out there. Saison dupont is prime. Prairie brewing, Stillwater brewing, and Upright brewing all do solid Saisons.

Personally, I don't consider Hennepin a true Saison. Tank 7 is certain (in my opinion) the best American Saison. For Saisons with character and additions, it's hard to beat Stillwater. Their cellar door is incredible.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: morticaixavier on August 30, 2013, 10:09:52 PM
I enjoy Victory Swing a lot on hot summer days.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: bboy9000 on August 30, 2013, 10:42:25 PM
Boulevard Tank 7 should be easy to get in Nebraska.  Le Merle from North Coast Brewery is good too.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: morticaixavier on August 30, 2013, 10:50:38 PM
Boulevard Tank 7 should be easy to get in Nebraska.  Le Merle from North Coast Brewery is good too.

yes it is!
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: duboman on August 30, 2013, 11:03:00 PM
+1 to tank 7, it's really a great beer from a great brewery!
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: HoosierBrew on August 31, 2013, 02:34:48 AM
If you can get a fresh, unskunked Saison DuPont, that's probably the gold standard. Boulevard Tank 7 is a damn good example as well. I know Ommegang markets Hennepin as a Saison, but they use their house yeast strain as opposed to a true saison strain, so it ends up tasting more like a Belgian Golden to me.
+1 to all of this.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: bigchicken on August 31, 2013, 02:35:07 PM
Thanks for all the responses! I'm pretty sure I've had a bottle of Tank 7 before, just can't remember what it was like. I'll be looking around for it and the other suggestions too.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: speed on September 10, 2013, 03:23:59 AM
So big chicken, whereabouts do you reside, I 'm in the western side of the state.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: reverseapachemaster on September 10, 2013, 01:41:08 PM
I'll also chime in for Tank 7. You may also get Prairie up there. They also make solid saisons albeit on the hoppy side. Le Merle by North Coast is a pretty good saison. Not sure if that makes it into your area.

Saison Dupont is considered the gold standard for saisons but I don't particularly love the green bottle skunked saison. It's drinkable and still good but it pales in comparison to unskunked Dupont. You can occasionally find Dupont on tap and Dupont bottles in brown 375ml bottles although they are hard to find. Well worth picking up if you can find it.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: hoser on September 10, 2013, 01:47:23 PM
Speaking as a fellow Nebraskan, Tank 7 and Funkwerks are the 2 best commercial saisons inside the state borders, IMHO. Others would be Goose Island Sofie, Sierra Nevada Ovila, and Hennepin.  I don't particulary care for the DuPont 'skunk' but worth a try if you have never had it.

Keep the grist simple and spices small.  The spice should come more from the yeast.  Good luck.

Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: jds357 on September 10, 2013, 02:51:09 PM
The iO Saison from the Jolly Pumpkin DESTROYS.  I'll do unforgivable things to get my hands on that beer.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: bigchicken on September 10, 2013, 05:49:47 PM
So big chicken, whereabouts do you reside, I 'm in the western side of the state.

I recently moved to the big city of Lincoln.

Speaking as a fellow Nebraskan, Tank 7 and Funkwerks are the 2 best commercial saisons inside the state borders, IMHO. Others would be Goose Island Sofie, Sierra Nevada Ovila, and Hennepin.  I don't particulary care for the DuPont 'skunk' but worth a try if you have never had it.

Keep the grist simple and spices small.  The spice should come more from the yeast.  Good luck.



I just tried a bottle of DuPont in the green bottle. Definitely had some skunk in there. I'm really liking the Tank 7. I'm still working on a recipe, but I'm taking your advice of letting the yeast work its spicy magic.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: Jarhno on September 12, 2013, 05:09:26 PM
If you can get a fresh, unskunked Saison DuPont, that's probably the gold standard. Boulevard Tank 7 is a damn good example as well. I know Ommegang markets Hennepin as a Saison, but they use their house yeast strain as opposed to a true saison strain, so it ends up tasting more like a Belgian Golden to me.
+1 to all of this.

+10. These guys know what they're talking about.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on September 12, 2013, 06:41:34 PM
The iO Saison from the Jolly Pumpkin DESTROYS.  I'll do unforgivable things to get my hands on that beer.

Like trade some west coast goodies for it?  ;D

Its normally available at my local better bottle shop. I'll have to pick on up (along with some Dark Dawn)!
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on September 12, 2013, 06:55:28 PM
Lots of solid samples out there. Saison dupont is prime. Prairie brewing, Stillwater brewing, and Upright brewing all do solid Saisons.

Personally, I don't consider Hennepin a true Saison. Tank 7 is certain (in my opinion) the best American Saison. For Saisons with character and additions, it's hard to beat Stillwater. Their cellar door is incredible.

I REALLY enjoy Upright's stuff.

I picked up a single of Stillwater's Stateside and it was ROUGH - high alcohols, phenolics, all-in-all poor fermentation. Haven't tried Cellar Door...
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: redbeerman on September 12, 2013, 07:03:56 PM
Lots of solid samples out there. Saison dupont is prime. Prairie brewing, Stillwater brewing, and Upright brewing all do solid Saisons.

Personally, I don't consider Hennepin a true Saison. Tank 7 is certain (in my opinion) the best American Saison. For Saisons with character and additions, it's hard to beat Stillwater. Their cellar door is incredible.

I REALLY enjoy Upright's stuff.

I picked up a single of Stillwater's Stateside and it was ROUGH - high alcohols, phenolics, all-in-all poor fermentation. Haven't tried Cellar Door...

I have had Stateside and it was pretty good.  It's a local beer for me though.  I think the bottle you got was mishandled, Kyle, not poorly fermented.  Cellar Door is very good as well.  For me Dupont on tap IS the gold standard.  I do like JPs offerings a lot too.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: andyi on September 12, 2013, 07:27:14 PM
I just had a Magic Hat Séance dark saison.  Didn't know what to expect but it hits all the basics on the BJCP guidelines with the additional  touch of roastiness.  At 4.5% it drinks easy.

+1 on the Stillwater. Great beers.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on September 13, 2013, 06:31:43 PM
^ Definitely enough positive feedback to try more from Stillwater.

Every once in awhile - you just get a bad bottle!
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: narvin on September 13, 2013, 07:03:12 PM
Stillwater's beers are also made in many different places.  The year-round beers just switched to a new contract brewery in Connecticut, so who knows if that changed anything.  Special releases are still made either in Baltimore or at a brewery where he's gypsy-ing.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: etbrew on September 30, 2013, 11:41:19 AM
I agree with recomendations for Stillwater and I love Tank 7 and Dupont.  I recently had a dry hopped version of the Dupont (I can't remember what it was called) and it was awsome. 

I don't know if you can get it your area but Mystic Brewery makes some killer Saisons.  They are in I believe Chelsea MA.  I have tried evey one of their beers I could get my hands on a loved them all.

Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: jeffy on September 30, 2013, 01:07:37 PM
I agree with recomendations for Stillwater and I love Tank 7 and Dupont.  I recently had a dry hopped version of the Dupont (I can't remember what it was called) and it was awsome. 

I've had this on tap a couple times at my "local" and really enjoy it.  I think they call in "Dry Hopped Saison Du Pont."  At least that's what the chalk board said.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: snowtiger87 on October 01, 2013, 10:07:13 PM
I think Funkwerks out of Ft Collins just made it into Nebraska. Their regular Saison got a gold at the GABF last year - and they won small brewery of the year.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: AmandaK on October 02, 2013, 12:36:37 PM
I think Funkwerks out of Ft Collins just made it into Nebraska. Their regular Saison got a gold at the GABF last year - and they won small brewery of the year.

You are correct sir. I'm going to start having my sister run me some FW across the state line when she moves up there.

FWIW, Tank 7 is still the ultimate saison for me.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: reverseapachemaster on October 02, 2013, 02:18:01 PM
I'd be very happy if Funkwerks began distribution in Texas, even if it was just their standard saison.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: bigchicken on October 06, 2013, 02:29:12 PM
I think Funkwerks out of Ft Collins just made it into Nebraska. Their regular Saison got a gold at the GABF last year - and they won small brewery of the year.

You are correct sir. I'm going to start having my sister run me some FW across the state line when she moves up there.

FWIW, Tank 7 is still the ultimate saison for me.

Looks like I'll be making another trip to the store to try to find the Funkwerks. I did get to try a Saison fermented in a gin barrel at Upstream Brewery recently. It wasn't great, but not bad either. So far Tank 7 is the one I'm liking the best.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: 1vertical on June 29, 2015, 01:22:07 PM
Finally got to try FunkWerks.  It is for sure worth a visit if you get the chance.
The Saison was so nice flavorful and clean...if that is a word you can use with saision.
Had the bbl aged quad and it stood out as a great beer also.  I liked the strong belgian golden
and the apricot saison as well.   Had to drive so had to stop tasting.
 ;D
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: Derek on August 11, 2015, 02:07:25 PM
I really like Tank 7 but am also a fan of Allagash Saison.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: ethinson on August 11, 2015, 06:27:36 PM
I love Saisons... that's my favorite style.  I'm scrolling through my untappd to see if I can find any of the ones I like that you might be able to get.  A lot of them may only be available in Oregon.

I liked the Three Eyed Raven (Game of Thrones) beer from Ommegang, although that's a "Red Saison" so a little darker than is typical.  Upright is hit or miss for me, I liked the Saison Orsted but both Four and Seven weren't to my liking.  Urban Farmhouse from The Commons is good but that may be Oregon only. 

Second and Third all the suggestions of Saison DuPont if you can get it fresh.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: reverseapachemaster on August 11, 2015, 07:21:19 PM
I love Saisons... that's my favorite style.  I'm scrolling through my untappd to see if I can find any of the ones I like that you might be able to get.  A lot of them may only be available in Oregon.

I liked the Three Eyed Raven (Game of Thrones) beer from Ommegang, although that's a "Red Saison" so a little darker than is typical.  Upright is hit or miss for me, I liked the Saison Orsted but both Four and Seven weren't to my liking.  Urban Farmhouse from The Commons is good but that may be Oregon only. 

Second and Third all the suggestions of Saison DuPont if you can get it fresh.

I wasn't a big fan of Upright but I really enjoy The Commons' beers. I think Upright distributes a little out of OR but if The Commons gets out of OR then it's likely only to WA.

Not sure that freshness is the issue with Dupont Saison Vieille so much as avoiding the skunk in the green bottles. Dupont already has Vieille in brown 375ml bottles and is transitioning to brown 750ml bottles for the US market. Not sure if or when the other Dupont beers will make the change.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: smkranz on August 12, 2015, 01:55:35 AM
St. Feuillien Saison has become my favorite commercial version, better and more reliable than DuPont.  All St. Feuillien beers are stellar.

My own recipe is my favorite homebrewed version.  Stupid simple recipe, just Belgian pils malt, Kent Goldings (boil and finish), and shoot for upper 50's O.G.  Sometimes I add some Candy syrup.  Try using a continuous-rising mash from 113-162 degrees over 90 minutes as described in Farmhouse Ales.  I use either WLP565 or Belle Saison yeast, start it off in the mid-70's and crank it up to mid/upper 80's over 7 days.

Always turns out.
Title: Re: Commercial Saisons
Post by: Hand of Dom on May 22, 2016, 09:20:10 AM
My three favourite saisons, in no particular order:

Dupont - as others have said, the standard by which other saisons are judged.  Delicious refreshing goodness.
Tank 7 - have only had this a couple of times, but damn it made an impression. Again, refreshing, and bursting with flavour.
Saison Cazeau - made with elderflowers, smells amazing, tastes spicy and sharp.