Old Fashion Saison

The Saison style was born in the province of Hainaut, Belgium. This type of beer was brewed in the cold months to be drunk in summer. Formerly, these beers actually were seasonal (saison is ‘season’ in French), but, as everyone knows, there is no more season, and today they’re produced throughout the year.

But this one possesses a quality of a historic nature — it’s produced in the province, in Silly, by the Brasserie de Silly, founded in 1850. It’s a small brewery which however offers one example of each Belgian beer style.

A priori, these beers are of a distinctive yellow-orange colour, but we’ve often had the opportunity to verify that many breweries depart from this principle. In any case one thing is sure: pale malts were not available in 1850. And this beer has been brewed since that date. The first Saisons were rather dark, then became paler. That makes this beer doubly historic.

The real surprise is its taste. A very slight sourness, no citrusy or orange-like fruitiness, no earthy notes, but an impression of honey and caramel, and even, at times, liquorice (especially in the nose). Sweet with a syrupy start, full-bodied, this beer (5.3% ABV) is pleasant (although far removed from the current theoretical style).

It takes a few minutes to be able to make the step and appreciate it as a kind of amber Flemish beer with sugar and raisin notes. In fact, it may be an intellectual beer.