Friday, September 16, 2011

The Bruery Saison de Lente

Like many craft brewers, the Bruery started with Patrick Rue brewing batches in his home as a diversion from his first year in law school.  The first beer brewed by Rue was a reddish ale with Cascade hops.  Since that modest start, Patrick Rue has created an established craft brewery in Orange County, California with a range of year-around beers with names like Mischief and Loakal Red.  He has also developed an array of seasonal specialty beers, such as the Saison de Lente.  

The Saison de Lente is a spring ale brewed in the Belgian Style Saison style.  The brewer describes the beer as golden in color with a wild and rustic Brettanomyces character.  This description hearkens to the other "Brett" beers that I've tried, like the Orval Trappist Ale and the New Belgium Le Fleur, Misseur? Ale. Personally, I love beers brewed with Brettanomyces or "Brett," because the yeast produces flavors that you cannot find anywhere else.

The Breuery's Saison de Lente is brewed as a Belgian Style Saison Ale, much like the Orval or the New Belgium.  The beer pours a cloudy gold color, which is a result of the beer being unfiltered.  As it is poured, the beer produces a substantial amount of foam.  This is to be expected because the "Brett" yeast have been quite active during the bottle conditioning.

The foam gradually gives way to aromas of citrus fruits, wild flowers and even a little grass.  These aromatic elements are not as "wild" as other "Brett" beers that I have tried.  As one begins to taste the beer, he or she is immediately reminded of the wild yeast, which produce a range of interesting flavors.  There is a bitterness up front, that seems like a mix of lemon and sage.  Both the lemon and sage continue through the middle and give way before the finish, which is very dry.  There is a little pepper in the background, but not enough to really stand out.  At the end, there is some hoppiness, although it, like the pepper, does not rise over the other other flavors in the beer. 

This beer has an ABV of 6.5% and has 35 IBUs.  The Breuery releases the Saison de Lente between March and May of every year.


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