Beer Notes: Home Grown Saison

Amsterdam Brewing Company (Toronto, Ontario)

Saison / Farmhouse Ale (6.0%)

Home Grown Saison

Look: Hazy, honey coloured. Airy and light white head settles as a small, puffy collar. Long streaks of lace.

Smell: Light honey malts. Red fife wheat and spelt are prevalent, bringing a vague sourness and earthy character. Hints of apple, pear, sweet white wine. Mild funk.

Taste: Crisp, dry and earthy. Soft honey sweetness countered by sharp lemon, orange and vinous notes. Finish is very dry, lingering lemon in the aftertaste.

Mouth: Medium to full body. Relatively soft carbonation, fairly viscose, earthy and a bit chewy.

Opinion: Very rustic take on the style. The grain bill is quite hearty, Cascade hops are well used and keep the beer from feeling too heavy. Not a lot of funk, but enough yeasty life on the tongue to give it some pop.

Food: Charcuterie, green or white grapes, creamy cheeses, lighter nuts, soft white bread.

Note: Amsterdam Brewing Company provided me with a bottle of Home Grown Saison for evaluation.

Beer Notes: End of Saison

Beyond The Pale Brewing Company (Ottawa, Ontario)

Imperial Saison / Farmhouse Ale (8.4%)

End of Saison

Look: Chill-hazed, light apricot orange colour. Small, loose, frothy white head hangs around as a cap.

Smell: Lightly toasted malt and fresh grasses. Tons of yeast esters…banana, clove, apple, pine, wintergreen, lavender. Very complex and appealing.

Taste: Very intense at first. Bitter citrus flavour is front-loaded, then mellows out nicely. Surprisingly light syrupy sweetness, notes of apple and pear, very dry and peppery finish with a hint of mint.

Mouth: Viscose, grainy, medium-bodied. Aftertaste is grainy, yet crisp. Distinct ethanol heat.

Opinion: Deceptively easy-drinking, but also very satisfying. Similar to Hennepin in many ways. Great as a sipper.

Food: Creamy cheeses, light rye bread, mild sausage, strawberries, kettle chips.