Honey Mussel Saison – Spinnakers Brewpub (Victoria, BC, Canada)

Honey Mussel Saison – Spinnakers Brewpub, 6.2% ABV – 20 IBU, 650ml., (Victoria, BC, Canada) (*local BC craft beer*)


on the front-right label:

Brewed with Canadian Pilsen malt and BC grown hops, this is a warm fermented, Belgian style saison made truly unique by the addition of local honey mussels grown and harvested by BC Mussel Company, in the boil. The soft, sweet flavour of these delicate bivalve mollusks compliments the slightly fruity esters of our French Saison yeast and makes for a totally one of a kind offering.

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  • Style: (barrel aged – French Oak) Sour Saison
  • Taste: Sour pukey barnyard grapefruit subtle bitter dry grainy oaked barley
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $7.35 CAD – 650ml., March 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: nah

Visual: Pours slightly hazy pale orange with a massive loose foamy head, sticky half lacing, clusters of speedy gonzales streams. No sunken bits of mussels, fortunately.

Nose: yeasty-airy, light funk wheat malt, citrus-floral overtones. (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: fizzy-crisp-light creamy lively mouthfeel

Mid-palate: sweet barley malt, apricot, light tangy-zingy, (lvl-5-sweetness), light saltiness

Finish: banana wheat malt exhale, residual saltiness, dirty palate/non-smooth finish.

Summary: (Mussel saison, is that going to be a thing? Like oyster stouts…). There is a general clammy saltiness from the early mids to the finish and I must say it doesn’t make this beer good. There’s some fruity apricot-banana wheat malt flavour but the finish is just a mess – it makes you want to eat something or drink something else to clean your mouth. This is the 8th Spinnakers brew that I’ve reviewed and I can definitively say that I don’t like their beers. Rating range: C+ to Fail.

Puck The Beer Petite Saison – North Coast Brewing (Fort Bragg, CA, USA)

Puck The Beer Petite Saison – North Coast Brewing, 4% ABV, 12 oz., (Fort Bragg, California, USA)


description from ratebeer.com

“First brewed to celebrate our 25th anniversary, the beer now known as PUCK, a petite saison of just over 4% ABV, won a place in our hearts and in our year-round portfolio of beers. Brewed with premium Pils and wheat malts and fermented with the same yeast strain used to make our renowned Saison, Le Merle, Puck is sharp and spritzy with a delicious flowery, spicy dry-hop aroma—the perfect accompaniment to any celebration, big or small.


  • Style: (session) Saison
  • Taste: Sessionable crisp mandarin orange grainy lager malt slight tart rough
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $3.50 CAD (7.5% off) – 12 oz.,  September 2015
  • Do I love this enoughto drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: sessionable and forgettable

Visual: Pours golden orange-yellow with no real lasting head, a thin hazy layer of retention, singular small bubble streams all around.

Nose: orange citrusy barley malt, notes of florals and honey. (lvl-3)-pungency

Attack: super crisp bite, thinner body entry

Mid-palate: (lvl-5-sweetness), mandarin orange, grainy lager malt, tingly-fizzy CO2, short sour tangy

Finish: light metallic pils malt, subtle bitter hops, mild wheat malt rough

Summary: Very nice execution of a 4% beer – good crisp drinkability with orangy malt flavour with just enough depth of body. A bit thin at the start but picks up in the mids and finishes with a gentle hop bitterness. Good quality but not exceptional.

Saison Rustique – Brasserie Dunham (Dunham, QC, Canada)

Saison Rustique – Brasserie Dunham, 6% ABV – 38 IBU – 750 ml., (Dunham, Quebec, Canada)


  • Style: Saison
  • Taste: Floral peachy prickly wheat malt stealth bitter hops
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $12.80 CAD (after 5% off) – 750 ml., May 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: good quality beer

Visual: Pours cloudy light orange with a large lasting fine foamy head with sticky lacing, fantastic layer of retention, suspended sediment.

Nose: banana wheat malt, peach, light chamomile,  (lvl-3)-pungency

Attack: crisp, background acidity

Mid-palate: background sour, subtle funk, (lvl-3-sweetness), prickly spices, tangy peachy-banana wheat malt,

Finish: stealth bitter hops

Summary: Supremely drinkable and goes very nice with a meal. Good complexity with the fruity peach flavour being the standout.

Dry Hopped Sour Saison – Spinnakers Brewpub (Victoria, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: [C+]

Dry Hopped Brewers Reserve Series Sour Saison (French Oak BA) – Spinnakers Brewpub, 5.6% ABV – 35 IBU, 650ml., (Victoria, BC, Canada) (*local BC craft beer)


on the front-right label:

A dry saison fermented with a French yeast strain, aged for 9 months in French Oak barrels and then dry hopped with Topaz hops. Tart, funky, and fruity, this sour ale has characteristics of citrus, passionfruit, pineapple, with added complexity from it’s [sic] maturation in oak.


  • Style: (barrel aged – French Oak) Sour Saison
  • Taste: Sour pukey barnyard grapefruit subtle bitter dry grainy oaked barley
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $12.90 CAD – 650ml., August 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: didn’t love it

Visual: Pours cloudy pale peachy orange with a very small dissipating head, ringed retention with a big island, a few fast bubbles here and there.

Nose: peach, pineapple, sour acidic funk. (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: big sour pukey, incoming fruity

Mid-palate: tart crisp bite, bitter pink grapefruit, sour pukey barnyard, (lvl-3-sweetness)

Finish: passionfruit exhale, lingering tartness, very subtle hopped bitterness, dry woody oak, grainy barley malt

Summary: Of the 7 Spinnaker brews I’ve had to date so far, this is one with the most depth and complexity. I find this one a bit too sour and pukey but at least citrus and passionfruit flavours are on point.

Saison Dupont Vieille Provision – Brasserie Dupont (Tourpes, Belgium)

Saison Dupont Vieille Provision – Brasserie Dupont, 6.5% ABV, 750 ml., (Tourpes, Belgium)


“Saison Dupont is a classic Belgian farmhouse ale. This is a beautifully balanced, complex beer that has a refreshing fruitiness and long, dry finish. It is bottled unfiltered so it may be cloudy or have a slight sediment but this is normal and perfectly natural.

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  • Style: Saison
  • Taste: Clean sweet grainy honey/floral/lemon barley malt banana wheat malt exhale
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $8.85 CAD – 750 ml., April 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: sure

Visual: Corked with a twisty top. Pours golden yellow-orange with a very largy foamy head, 1cm long lasting retention, clusters of micro slow streams.

Nose: honey-floral-citrus sweet malt, yeasty and wheaty. (lvl-6)-intensity

Attack: super crisp

Mid-palate: airy-bloated CO2, (lvl-3-sweetness), grainy sweet lager barley malt, honey, light chamomile, lemony

Finish: banana wheat malt exhale, dry bittersweet hops

Summary: Easy and clean from start to finish. Solid without being excruciatingly complex.

Lemon Gin Saison – Bridge Brewing Co. (North Vancouver, BC, Canada)

Lemon Gin Saison (Seasonal) – Bridge Brewing, 5.5% ABV – 24 IBUs, 650ml., (North Vancouver, BC, Canada) (*local BC craft brew)


printed on the front-right label:

“Brewed with the addition of juniper berries, lemon peel, coriander, and pink peppercorns, and fermented with a French Saison yeast, this beer is unique and super drinkable. Juniper, used in moderation, emphasizes the gin flavours, while coriander adds depth and complexity. The Saison yeast used expresses peppery, spicy and citrusy notes, which play well with the lemon zest and pink peppercorn.”

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  • Style: (flavoured – juniper berry, lemon peel, coriander, pink peppercord) Saison
  • Taste: Lemon citrusy tang soft banana wheat malt dry subtle hopped bitter
  • Where I got it : Bottle Jockey / N.Bby
  • How much: $7.65 (after 12.5% off) – 650ml., March 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: doesn’t taste as advertised

Visual: Pours opaque golden orange with a massive, ultra-foamy lasting head, half sticky lacing, singular steady micro streams.

Nose: yeasty, mild fart, very mild pukey pineapple wheat malt. (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: crisp bite, fine-fizzy

Mid-palate: juniper berry, tangy lemon citrus acidity, light sour funk, dry rough grainy wheat malt, (lvl-3-sweetness),

Finish: hint pink peppercorn/coriander exhale, stealth light bitter hops, residual tangy malt.

Summary: Not exactly bursting with bright lemon or juniper flavours, there is some lemony acidic tang, but the main taste is the wheat malt. Acceptable body and mouthfeel, I was just expecting more.

Señor Saison – Coronado Brewing Co. (Coronado, CA, USA)

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Señor Saison – Coronado Brewing Company, 6.5% ABV, 1 pint 6 fl.oz., (Coronado, California, USA)

“Crown Series – Belgian-style ale brewed with jalapeño and piloncillo

-In case you’re like me and wondering what is piloncillo, it’s unrefined cane sugar packed into a cone shape.

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printed on the back of the bottle:

“Just south of our brewery, Baja California’s burgeoning spirit of craft brewing reminds us a lot of our own Meixcan brewers looking to make a name for their region. We’ve enjoyed keeping an eye on the exciting new beers coming out of Tijuana, Mexicali, Ensenada and Valle de Guadalupe, and celebrate the rise of craft beer south of the border with this reimagined farmhouse ale. Brewed with piloncillo and jalapeño peppers, it combines a touch of spice with fruity esters derived from Belgian yeast. Like the brews of our cross-border amigos, this cerveza takes craft to new and interesting places.”

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  • Style: (flavoured – jalapeno, piloncillo) Saison
  • Taste: Bubbly-fizzy non-spicy jalapeno banana clove wheat malt tangerine bloated
  • Where I got it : Liquor Barn / N. Burnaby
  • How much: $10 CAD (after 10% off) – 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., October 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados:

Visual: Pours amber orange with a large creamy head, half sticky lacing, a foamy layer of retention with clusters upon clusters of fast activity.

Nose: orange citrusy banana wheat malt, jalapeno. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: crisp-full cream-fizzy

Mid-palate: jalapeño vegginess without the heat, (lvl-5-sweetness), bubbly beer head texture, light pukey-tangy mixed with banana clove wheat malt, tangerine citrusy

Finish: very subtle jalapeño heat, banana wheat malt grainy exhale.

Conclusion: Too much CO2 in there combined with the citrusy wheat malt makes it unbalanced and leaves you feeling bloated.  Jalapeno flavour plays a subservient role to the prominent banana-clove profile, I didn’t find this brew particularly enticing. A small notch above average.