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Beer Styles

More Resources: Tasting Sheet Study Guide

Belgian-Style Saison

Beers in this category are gold to light amber in color. Often bottle-conditioned, with some yeast character and high carbonation. Belgian-style saison may have Brettanomyces or lactic character, and fruity, horsey, goaty and/or leather-like aromas and flavors. Specialty ingredients, including spices, may contribute a unique and signature character. Commonly called “farmhouse ales” and originating as summertime beers in Belgium, these are not just warm-weather treats. U.S. craft brewers brew them year-round and have taken to adding a variety of additional ingredients.

Category: Belgian Styles

Food Pairings

  • Seafood (Mussels)
  • Brie
  • Lemon Ginger Sorbet

Glassware & Serving Temperature

Tulip
45-55 °F

Commercial Examples

Commercial Examples

Appearance

Color

Pale to Light Brown

Clarity

Slight Haze

Carbonation (Visual)

Fast Rising Bubbles

Flavor/Aroma

Alcohol

Mild to Noticeable

Hop

Hop aroma is low to medium. Hop bitterness is medium to medium-high

Malt

Malt flavor is low but provides foundation for the overall balance

Esters

Fruit (Orange, Lemon)

Phenols

Pepper

Fermentation By-Products

A small amount of sour or acidic flavor is acceptable when in balance with other components. These beers are often bottle-conditioned, with some yeast character and high carbonation

Sensations

Body

Soft

Carbonation

High

Finish Length

Short to Medium

Attenuation

High

Ingredients

Hops

Noble, Styrian, East Kent Goldings

Malt

Pilsner, Munich, Malted Wheat

Water

High sulfate content

Yeast

Ale, Brettanomyces possible

Other Styles you May Enjoy