Sunday, May 24, 2009

Lagunitas: The Saison of Summer


Yesterday it was a perfect day in Seattle to sit outside and enjoy lunch and a beer. The sun was shining it was a comfortable 70 degrees and a light breeze. I found a perfect beer to go with a sunny summer day. The Lagunitas Saison is a great replacement for the typical American Pilsner style beer that those giant breweries try to tell you taste good. It's also a great replacement for the ubiquitous hefewiezens that have become so popular in the last few years. Plenty of great hefe's but it's nice to have a choice.

This beer pours a pure yellow, not golden or pale but a crisp clear yellow. It has very little head and the bubbles slowly climb up the sides of the glass. It has a malty smell with a faint wif of hops and yeast. It doesn't look and smell quite like a normal Saison and this helps it blend in with the bud crowd if the need arises. The effervescence hits the front of your tongue immediately and then the tart taste hangs out mainly on the sides and back of your tongue. That's where you find most of the flavor. It's not citrusy like a hefe or bitter/hoppy like an IPA. It is a mix of lightly malty and tartness that make it a great refreshing summer beer. And best of all: No fruit needed.

In a pint glass this great beer could easily sneak in to your baseball buddies circle of cheap beer drinkers without getting laughed out or called snobby. Of course all this could be for naught if a knowledgeable bartender serves it in the proper Belgian goblet style glass.

Pros:
-Excellent tasting refreshing summer beer
-Can blend in with cheap beer crowd if required
-No Fruit required

Cons:
-Your cover could be blown if served in the proper frew-frewy glass

Verdict:
-A great non-hefe non-crap beer that's perfect for summer

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