Saison de Brooklyn
Review Date 12/22/2004
I was pretty happy to see Brooklyn Brewery
beers brought down here into Atlanta this year. The brewery has always been
a favorite of mine, and it was a real treat to get some
Chocolate Stout for Christmas again. Even better, a few beers are
popping up from the company’s Brewmaster Reserve line, the first of
them being Saison de Brooklyn.
Saison de Brooklyn is patterned after French and Belgian beers of the same name. The style is usually a crisp and refreshing wheat ale brewed with seasonings and meant for spring and summer imbibing. These are generally hot weather beers, with a moderate alcohol content in the 5% range (Brooklyn’s version has a slightly higher alcohol content of 6.8% by volume).
We might be getting this beer a bit late down south, as Brooklyn indicates it is available through middle and late summer. Still, this is a beer that will hold up over time. I believe it is a draft-only product, though it does seem to get around since I am seeing it in Atlanta. According to Brooklyn, this is the second beer to be featured in the Reserve series. The other beers in the lineup include a dunkel weiss, a dry stout, a weissbock, and an abbey ale.
Saison de Brooklyn pours to a hazy yellow color with a light and creamy head and a fruity, spicy nose. The palate is on the light to moderate side, fairly crisp but with a pleasing soft matiness. There is a pronounced Belgian yeast character here that is musty and drying.
There’s also a touch of fruit, some citric notes, and hints of coriander, cotton candy, and perhaps clove. The finish is balanced nicely. Overall, a nicely refreshing brew and a nice example of the style, though I still prefer Saison Dupont and Saison Silly, two indigenous examples of Saison.
Brooklyn suggests this beer with spicy foods, though I am not sure I agree. Spicy foods will tend to mask some of the more subtle spices here. Try it with a decent hunk of cheese instead. At $5.99 a pint, I found this beer to be a bit pricey, too, though I don’t feel myself ill-used. I got my money’s worth and then some.
Truly a great summer beer, but it works well in winter, too. It has enough complexity to be refreshing and interesting at the same time. This is a beer perfect for any saison.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.