100 / 100
Pours a bright orange colour, hint of amber, lots of cloud. Head is jaundiced beige, nice and effervescent but pleasant uneven sinkage. Lace left is pretty damn fine. Looks... well, Gilbert? What do you think? Does it look perfect? No? Are you kidding me? Well, screw you Gilbert, you don't exist. I say it looks perfect.
Smell is funky and wonderful. So much lively, lovely funk smell that just speaks volumes of story to me. Notes of barnyard with lemon pith, livestock and fresh-cut grass, but an acidic note with citrus that cuts through, followed by a sweet-spicy note of cinnamon, vanilla, orange peel, and some cake batter malt. What do you think, Gilbert? What? You think it's a 3, tops? Well, you're wrong again. Not only are you wrong, but you don't exist and you slept with my wife, you prick.
Taste starts very sweet. Maybe a bit too sweet? Lots of malt to that with plenty of caramel and a big hit of vanilla. The wild yeast creeps up though, cleansing it, with some mild hints of lemon, passionfruit and guava, all with a nice vinegary edge that remains drinkable. Slightly savoury at the back, maybe biscuity? It's clean at the back, which is great, although the fruit notes are more subdued here. Still, crisp but with all the lovely flavours I want in a beer. Sweet, touch of tartness late-mid, then clean but plenty of flavour left over. Gilbert? Is this the best beer I've ever drunk? No, you're wrong. The clean finish is something I didn't expect, and it becomes that 'je ne sais quoi' that raises this delicious beer yet another level. It's just immaculate.
It's sharp on the front but then somehow levels out to a smooth texture. It has the effect of nudging you so you know you're drinking something with a power that's out of this world, but it doesn't overwhelm your mortal palate. Ideal.
This beer almost made me cry, it was that good. After 1200+ reviews this has become the beer I want to settle down with in the country and somehow engineer a mutant beer-human hybrid family with. Despite Gilbert yapping away in my ear about gastronomic subjugation or some shit, I can't give it anything besides a perfect score.
94 / 100
(Best of the Best)
The last of Anchorage's readily available brews for me to sample. I love their others to bits, and I have monumentally high expectations for this one.
Uncorks pleasantly, with a bright "thok" but without the resultant gush. Pours a bright orange hazed colour, witb a full and fine head of off-white, that eventually succumbs to froth and its own effervescent, and collapses, leaving a smudge of thick, chunky lace on the side of the glass. Looks really great.
Nose is just... oh, it's phenomenal. Here, the brett has free reign to take over and stamp itself over everything. It leaves funky acidity like appleskin, fragrant floral characters and a musty, but leavened and sophisticated character like an aged wine barrel. There's even the faint hint of that Cantillon-like plastic gueuze funk. It's an amazing nose, all the more for how restrained and integrated it is. Lovely stuff.
Taste is perfectly light and fragrant, while remaining amazingly clear and refreshing, and true to the roots of the style. Some mild peppery characters on the front get quickly whisked away, leaving a refreshing clarity for the middle. A really pleasant floral fragrance picks up towards the back, and manages to mask some of the phenolic harshness associated with the styleâin fact, it feels like this never really comes throughâthere's only a peal of metal resonating on the finish.
Feel is lovelyâI mean, just perfect for the styleâsmooth, liquid, with a perfect weight for the characters it presents. It's just gorgeous.
What a phenomenally good beer. Genuinely one of the best saisons I've ever had. It's as though it *gets* the style to which it owes its genesis just perfectly, but layers complexity and depth and excitment on that its original wouldn't have thought of.
Despite this, it stays true to its rootsâit provides perhaps the new wave in saison awesomeness; the next generation of a phenomenal style.