Thursday 4 September 2014
London Fields Eastside Saison
Just to prove the point, the taproom also had the Saison on keg, but that version was lacklustre and ordinary, all fizz and no knickers you might say (but probably wouldn't!).
So anyway, the cask version is a deep gold and the first impression is almost a Dortmunder Export, malty and faintly sweet, before that funky farmhouse Saison note sweeps in, accompanied by a dry and lightly peppery bitterness. There's also ginger and grains of paradise (another gingery spice) in there, contributing a spiciness most evident in the aftertaste.
Saison is still fashionable in the UK, although some might argue it has already jumped the shark in the US, to be supplanted by the likes of Farmhouse IPA (essentially an even hoppier Saison). Meanwhile in places such as Germany it is only just taking off. I had my first two German Saisons (and one of those was actually brewed in Belgium) earlier this year. A spiced cask version makes it a bit more interesting and is to be applauded - look out for it!
(Disclaimer: I'm sat in the brewery taproom ahead of tonight's public launch for the beer, and have a glass of cask Eastside Saison in front of me...)