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Channeling Simon and Garfunkel (Are you going to Scarborough Fair?)

June 12, 2010

Apparently these three brewers have been…

There have been many great collaborative teams throughout history; Adam & Eve, Fred & Ginger, Salt & Pepper (no, not the mid-ninteies rap duo…), Calvin & Hobbes, Peaches and Cream (or was it Herb?), Lamb & Tunafish (wait…what?), Simon and Garfunkel.  The list could go on forever.  Recently, we’ve seen a surge of collaborative efforts on the brewing front, and all for the better.  Some really neat stuff is being pumped out–and I’m drinking one of those creations right now.

The latest brainchild in a series of collaborative creations  is “Saison du BUFF'” from the creative minds behind Stone Brewing, Victory, and Dogfish Head.  It’s not your typical Saison, as it’s brewed with parsley, sage, rosemary and (wait for it…) thyme!  You get the Scarborough Fair reference now?  No?  Take a look at this…it may ring some bells for you.  Back to the beer…Why Saison du BUFF, you ask?  Well, for starters, it is a Saison (to state the obvious).  Where does the “BUFF” come from? There’s a nice little definition on the neck of the bottle so there is no confusion.

BUFF (n.):  Brewers united for Freedom of Flavor.  A clandestine organization committed to liberation collective taste buds, citing the dastardly and/or oppressive reign of so-called “fizzy yellow beer”

Simple enough.

The beer pours a slightly hazy golden hue with a think, creamy white head and immediately smells of citrus, fresh rubbed sage, roses and pine.  I swear to god, it smells just like my Yves Saint Laurent perfume “In Love Again.”  A totally intoxicating array of aromas.  Surprisingly light on the tongue.  I was expecting this to be a bit syrupy considering the intense aromas–but it shows a dry, slightly peppery quality in the mouth.  Notes of citrus and herb intertwine with a clean and bitter hop bite.  It rounds out on the finish with a toasty malt character and maybe just a hint of parsley. 

Overall i think it’s a stellar beer–and slightly surprising as well.  Personally I find that all three breweries churn out over the top, mega IBU, alcohol bombs and for them to put forward something with restraint and a reasonable amount of alcohol (6%abv)…I’m just shocked.  I guess it does help when your motto is “expect nothing and be pleasantly surprised.”   

Parsley, sage, rosemary and time…this beer could become a true love of mine.

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