06 May 2011

NHC Score Sheets - Part One Saison du Permienne

Saison du Permienne scored a mediocre 25.  I opened one of my last two bottles, grabbed a box a tissues, and went over the score sheets.

Aroma: JUDGE 1: Light grainy, pear low spicy hop aroma.  Alcohol and Musty. 6/12
              JUDGE 2: Malty with some sharp alcohol notes an perhaps what could be some harsh hop aromas.  Some lighter (fuser) alcohol notes are also present.  Slight Citrusy character but lacking much of the complexity characteristic of the style.  Some spiciness but seems to me mostly alcohol derived. 5/12
              ME:  (I love judge 2).  Can't disagree.  Probably too old.  I might have scored it a bit higher. . .

Appearance:  JUDGE 1: Golden with slight orange hue.  Slight haze, low head.  Faded quickly. 2/3
                       JUDGE 2: Slightly hazy, golden orange.  Low white head is fleeting.  Huge legs. 2/3
                       ME:  I decanted so mine was crystal clear.  No head, no retention.  Yup! huge legs. (The decanting thing has me confused.  I guess the steward might have roused the yeast in the bottle.  But the steward in the with category didn't, which gave Satan some seriously low scores for Wit Willy.  Wouldn't a beer geek know to rouse the yeast in a wit?)  I would have scored it lower for the lack of head.

Flavor: JUDGE 1: Fruity, spicy, very light malt.  Dominate tart. Medium hop bitterness.  Spicy hop flavor finishes dry and tart.  Balance to bitter. Spicy dry tart sensation. 11/20
             JUDGE 2: Citric Tartness that extends into the finish making the finish juicy and citrusy. (Should be integrated not first.)  Bitterness is moderate high and seems to be largely alcohol derived.  No discernible hop flavor.  Lacks the long, dry finish characteristic of the style--tartness perhaps makes it seem drier that it is. 8/20
            ME:  Medium hop bitterness vs. No discernible hop flavor.  No wonder I hate competitions!  Me?  I don't get no hops.  (Judge 1 is an apprentice and Judge 2 is a National).  Otherwise I agree with both of 'em.

Mouthfeel: JUDGE 1:  Medium body, medium low carbonation, slight warmth. Moderate Creaminess.  Slight astringent from hops and spices. 3/5
                    JUDGE 2: Medium bodied with moderate-high carbonation and a juicy, tart mouthfeel.  Eventually significant alcohol warming in the back of the throat and into the chest. 3/5
                    ME:  no disagreements, except for the hop thing. . .

Overall Impression: JUDGE 1: Dry tart and refreshing.  Dry finish.  Overall pleasing but some musty.  Check hop freshness or spices if present or yeast health. 5/10
                                  JUDGE 2:  Alcohol Character is too much for style.  Seems to be at or above the high end of the ABV, and alcohol character dominates aroma and is too strong in the finish, Saison yeast can do well at high temperatures, but not too high. Other  strains will not tolerate high temperatures well and produce fusel alcohols and off aromas. Finish is surprisingly "juicy" for such an alcoholic beer - perhaps use harder water. 5/10
                                  ME:   I agree it has too much alcohol.  I was chasing ABV.  The next incarnation will have a lot less alcohol.

I will brew this version again, and it will be called "I Blame You Grand Cru"™.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 17:02

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