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2012 Top Ten Belgian Saison Ales in the United States

This Top Ten Belgian Style Saisons list  is from the results of the 2012 U.S. Open Beer Championship, Great American Beer Festival, and the World Beer Cup.

1. Red Hare Saison - Red Hare Brewing, Marietta, Georgia
2. Raspberry Saison - Stevens Point Brewing, Stevens Point, Wisconsin
3. Golden Cap - New Holland Brewing, Holland, Michigan
4. Saison-Brett, Boulevard Brewing Co., Kansas City, MO
5. Funkwerks Saison, Funkwerks, Fort Collins, CO
6. Sofi e, Goose Island Beer Co., Chicago, IL
7. Carnevale, The Lost Abbey, San Marcos, CA
8. Saison Station 55, Hopfenstark Brewery, L’Assomption, Canada
9. Urban Farmhouse Ale, The Commons Brewery, Portland, OR
10. Hennepin - Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown, New York

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French and Belgian Saison
Beers in this category are golden to deep amber in color. There may be quite a variety of characters within this style. Generally: They are light to medium in body. Malt aroma is low to medium-low. Fruity esters dominate the aroma, while hop character, complex alcohols, herbs, spices and even clove and smoke-like phenolics may or may not be evident in the overall balanced beer. Malt flavor is low but provides foundation for the overall balance. Hop bitterness is moderate to moderately assertive. Herb and/or spice flavors may or may not be evident. Fruitiness from fermentation is generally in character. A balanced small amount of sour or acidic flavors is acceptable when in balance with other components. Earthy, cellar like, musty aromas are okay. A very low level of Brettanomyces yeast character may be evident. Diacetyl should not be perceived. Chill or slight yeast haze is okay. Often bottle conditioned with some yeast character and high carbonation. Brewer may indicate on the bottle whether the yeast should be intentionally roused or if they prefer that the entry be poured as quietly as possible.
OG: 1.055-1.080
FG: 1.004-1.016
Alcohol by Weight: 3.5-6.6%
IBU: 20-40
Color SRM: 4-14

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