Author Topic: saison in the bottle: wait it out?  (Read 1019 times)

Offline dilluh98

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saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« on: June 25, 2015, 05:12:01 PM »
I recently made a fairly straightforward saison with WLP565 (OG: 1.063, FG: 1.003) and bottled all 6 gallons of it. I tried one yesterday after 2 weeks in the bottle and my wife and I both thought it was pretty good - not great but absolutely drinkable. Seems like the edges need some smoothing. A lot of spicy dryness with notes of pineapple. I’d probably drink a lot of it as-is at this point but I’m wondering if anyone has experience with predicting a global maximum in terms of how good a standard saison will/could be vs. bottle conditioning time. If I sit on the majority of it for 4-6 months is it going to be a lot better? Will it start to deteriorate rapidly at that point? This is my first real attempt at a saison (did a couple of test 1 gallon batches to get my feet wet that were “meh" until I figured out how to handle WLP565 a bit) so I’m not sure what to expect and absolutely clueless about aging/bottle-conditioning Belgian beers.

Thanks for any input!

Offline The Fat Jedi

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saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2015, 05:28:46 PM »
Interesting question. Saison are usually drunk "fresh" as far as I know, but I found a few bottles of Saison I made 2 years ago just today and I'm taking them to a home brew group tasting night tonight...I'll let you know what everyone thinks if you like...


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Offline The Fat Jedi

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2015, 05:31:27 PM »
BTW I pitched a 565 and a 566 at the same time...don't know why, just thought it might be interesting!


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Offline Stevie

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2015, 05:40:03 PM »
Moderate gravity saisons age well. Just keep the temp as low as possible and stable.

Offline dilluh98

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2015, 05:54:13 PM »
Jedi - yes, I'd like to hear the input you get back on those aged saisons.

Steve - I'm not sure what classifies as moderate gravity for saison (this one is ~7.8% ABV) but the bottles are in the coolest and most temperature stable closet in the house.

Offline euge

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2015, 05:56:56 PM »
Start drinking them.

Put half aside if you start to feel they aren't ready (lose a taste for) as a Saison will change interestingly over the course of a year or longer
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Offline Stevie

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2015, 05:57:03 PM »
To me moderate would be between 6 and 8% abv. I have had bottles of saison that were years old, both commercial and Homebrew, that were excellent.

Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2015, 06:55:38 PM »
I am not among those who believe every beer needs 4-6 weeks of conditioning after packaging before it is worth drinking but when it comes to saisons it is often worth it to give them a few extra weeks in the bottle. I find it flips like a lightswitch. One day the beers go from good to great. It is probably a flocculation issue.

Saisons age really well. I don't know where the idea arose that they do not age but that is not true for either historical or modern Wallonian saison.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2015, 07:16:35 PM »
Check a bottle once or twice a week. Once it gets where you like it, drink it but save a handful for long-term aging and check them every couple of months. Take detailed notes.

I generally brew pale, low-gravity saisons and they're great after a few weeks in the bottle but are still pretty good 6-12 months later.
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Offline dilluh98

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Re: saison in the bottle: wait it out?
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2015, 07:49:20 PM »
Check a bottle once or twice a week. Once it gets where you like it, drink it but save a handful for long-term aging and check them every couple of months. Take detailed notes.

I generally brew pale, low-gravity saisons and they're great after a few weeks in the bottle but are still pretty good 6-12 months later.

Good call. My wife and I are the only ones drinking it and being that it's in the higher alcohol range (at least in the heat of summer here in the south), having one per week and taking good notes will be an excellent way to see how the flavor evolves. I'll stash 5-6 bombers to have once a month much later on. As a relative noob to brewing, wrestling with 565 has been both challenging and fun. I plan on making a batch of saison once every 3-4 months now as it's my wife's favorite style.