Review: The Bruery | Saison de Lente

Photo cred: Simply Beer,

Photo cred: Simply Beer,

We discussed our confirmation names at the table of the pizzeria. We were two pints deep, a slice or two short.

Ah yes, we discussed the finer points of our Catholic pasts.

Nick spouted an anecdote about the bats the slept in the church through their baptism and communion, but fled the coup on confirmation day.

The families, with their children, embarrassed and distressed by our incessant swearing, followed suit.

In a moment, we were alone.

We were louder than we thought.

As I made it to my car, I was surprised I had not said something more embarrassing across the broad duration. By grace, my words carried like a bloated dirigible through the clouds, weighty and blunt, yet obscured by the din, the atmosphere.

I turned the key,

I tensed and then released,

I arose for the nightly homily that dripped through the speakers:

Have I not been crude
Or do I sound insincere
I’m just trying to make some sense of this
Before I lose another year
Its all that I can do

The Gospel According to Martin Courtney was written across my hands as I made my way home; hand over hand, I guided my 2008 Impala from Shelburne to Colchester like a patient shepherd.

The snow, I found, has been melting faster than I realized.

I had a shit. I felt like sleeping.

The ale was poured.

I felt it hit the glass.

I felt it hit my hand.


Fuck the police.

Saison de Lente is a Lenten farmhouse ale from the Californian beer wizards at The Bruery. It is lightly hopped and fermented with the yeast strain, brettanomyces, which imparts a distinctly more tart and musky aroma and flavor historically once indicative of beer spoilage. Consider purposely-ripped designer jeans or “avant-garde” musical genres.

…Now do you get it?

Sounds shitty, I know, but you’d be surprised.


It erupted like a tantrum. Like a prepubescent girl, it was screaming. In the glass, it was ferocious. The head was white as a pearl. It laced the cup, sparsely, like breadcrumbs in a Grimm fairytale.

I was lost.

I was a disingenuous school board meeting filled with anal-retentive nitwits raging against the town government and powered by middle-class sentiment, whole-grain Honey Smacks, and KY jelly.

…I think.


I gingerly took a whiff.

I was elated.

Golden to brass, it was stunning.

I could see right through it. It was beautiful.

It was genuine.

It was beer.

It stank like a fine sourdough.  It was a perfect, beautiful Italian sourdough round, and I could smell the toasted crust of it. Subtle, herbal hops tickled my nose. A gentle mineral character followed.


A wild



character came through,  with almost a lemongrass quality to it—

As it crossed my lips, did I do penance!

The mild banana quality of a saison emerged with a pleasantly light flavor, and accentuated itself on the backend. It immediately changed its tune towards the middle of the mouth.  Brettanomyces invaded as if were Saracens —salty, bready flavors with the notable pineapple funk—a quiet funk, though. Now there’s a very dry finish, skipper!

Subdued flavors, overall.




As Spring approaches, urges emerge for change, for evolution. Old things are wont become new. This beer is a tribute to that sentiment. This beer is both evocative and provocative. It provides empathy for desire for change with the smoothness of its flavor, and carbonated vivacity to inspire. Whether you’re religious or not, this is a season for recollection and reconsideration of one’s place in life. It’s a time of the year to set lofty goals. Some people really want to get out there and set the fucking world on fire.

I want to get pissed drunk with the Pope.

*9.0 out of 10*


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