The Bruery’s Saison Rue pours a hazy amber with a voluminous white head. The head sits atop the beer until you’ve consumed every last drop of liquid and the foam that remains clings to the side of the glass like Velcro. There is a veritable forest of bubbles rising up from the bottom of the beer, indicating a fair amount of carbonation. The label reads ‘Belgian Style Ale Brewed with Rye and Brettanomyces’. While the Brettanomyces are not uncommon ingredients in Belgian Farmhouse ales, rye is a somewhat less expected addition.
The nose gives off a variety of fragrances, among them pepper, brettanomyces funk, rye bread, grass, earth, banana and green apples. It’s a surprisingly fruity aroma, not quite as earthy as is typical of saisons.
There’s a good deal of lively carbonation, but that’s to be expected given the amount of visible CO2 rising through the beer. The beer itself is medium-bodied, crisp and smooth.
The rye lends Saison Rue an added bit of spiciness that complements the peppery notes well. The funk that comes with the use of brettanomyces is present throughout, but not the primary focus. It’s surprisingly fruity, with the banana and green apple notes from the nose coming through in the taste of the beer with some dark fruits thrown in for good measure. The robust malt backbone provides some sweetness and allows the Saison Yeast and Brettanomyces full effect.
This is perhaps the best saison I’ve had occasion to sample. It’s a particularly complex entry in an already complex style. The rye and brettanomyces really add something special to the beer and I can’t recommend it highly enough.
The Beer Buyer Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Pints
If You Liked This Try: Saison DuPont, The Bruery Trade Winds Tripel, Orval
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