It finally feels like it's getting a little warmer out there. It's about time too seen as it's now May! It can only mean one thing... the start of a few golden months of drinking glorious Pale Ale! As I transplanted my veg from the conservatory to the outdoor plot only one sort of Pale Ale was on my mind. Feeling the sun on my face for the first time in a while I knew it was time for some Saison!
I'd been eying up some of the new (to us) Partizan Saisons for a while now so I thought I'd give a couple of them a blast... after all, the excellent branding really does a good job of drawing you in.
Grisette Saison 4.8%
I'm a little confused by the name of this one, Grisette is either an edible toadstool or a young working class French Woman... I can only take that this beer is named after the working classes and farmers who used to brew it in the French speaking part of Belgium in the colder months to sup during the summer time... I'm sure I'll be told if not. It has a stunning aromatic bouquet of floral spice and citrus fruits. Waxy lemon rind and soft peach skins mix with a mild white pepper and clove. The flavour is something I was not expecting at all! It has the perfect beginnings of a Saison, good zesty carbonation with plenty of fruity citrus bite, but this then moves into a big earthy caramel malt backbone and finish. It's a bit of a twist on the classic, and sometimes hard to pin down style. An excellent drop indeed, something I'd more than happily try again.
Galaxy Saison 5.4%
This beer does not smell like a Saison. If you were to go into this blind you could easily pass this off as a heavily new world hopped IPA powerhouse! There's just a tiny hint of some drying pepper and spice to hint at something more. Primarily the aroma is all about the juicy fruits; mangos, lychees, tangerine, peach and apricot - it's all there. Galaxy is truly a stunning hop. The taste is a whole bag full of tricks. It's very different from the aroma (something I found with Kernel's Galaxy Pale last night) there's still lots of stone fruit flavour in the body, but here like the last there's a big earthy caramel malt presence taking it one step beyond the norm. This is like no Saison I've tried before, it's completely different...
And that's exactly why you should try it.