Ah, Saison…what a great style. I love a Saison, and I think we just don’t get enough of them in England.
So I considered myself lucky to get my hands on probably one of the last few remaining bottles of Rhubarbe de Saison, which was the 2015 Great British Home Brewing Challenge winning entry by Will Alston.
(I guess Thornbridge are slowly winding up production of this, in readiness for the next competition.?)
It’s be a shame really, as this is a great beer indeed. It’s novel but not gimmicky and is solidly satisfying.
Poured into a glass, it’s bell clear light copper with a fantastic running bead.
Caution! The sediment in the bottle is probably the most clumpy, floaty, stuff I’ve ever come across…just the slightest agitation and you’ve got dear little fluffy clouds every where, but it does settle quickly – so that’s one thing at least.
The head is wondrous snowy meringue and the aroma is that of gentle fresh rhubarb, some Saison phenols and a great, almost raspberryish “pippiness”.
The effervescent nature gives this beer a real velvety mouth feel, over which floods a sharp rhubarb acidity (you know how that is…) followed by bone dryness – which helps to flush out more fruit complexity and further attic dryness.
It’s so dry in the finish that it makes your cheeks ache, but that only means your saliva runs more strongly and demands you drink more.
Well done Mr. Will Alston. I wish I’d brewed this…
(PS: I promise I will start brewing again soon. I’m rapidly running out of stock and my wife is wondering what’s up with me…)