Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Saranac Belgian White (2008)

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (735) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 15, 2010
UPDATED: JUN 9, 2011 I poured a 12oz bottle into a Hoegaarden glass

Appearance: Dark yellow/light orange with so much haziness that it’s opaque. Forms a small, white, soapy head which mostly dissipates and leaves no lacing.

Smell: Fairly light-smelling with hints of the usual spices. Flowers and fruits are prominent in the nose with no generic "beer smell" thankfully. Not as aromatic as an authentic witbier, though.

Taste: While not nearly as authentic and organic-tasting as its European brethren, Saranac Belgian White is a commendable American macro adaptation of the style. It does bear quite a lot of resemblance to Hoegaarden, but without the level of spiciness. This is a mostly clean, mild palate with the orangepeel and coriander showing up in the finish. The first half has a slight citrusy flavor to it but is mild, like a breakfast juice made with too much water.

There’s not much bitterness here, which is standard. Thankfully, there’s no other macro beer qualities to it, either. A little more intensity of the genuine flavors would make this a really robust brew.

Mouthfeel: Thin but not watery per se. Some zesty sensation from the spice, but not a fizzy beer.

Drinkability: An ideal beer to have on a hot summer’s day or night. The mild juicy qualities make it quite refreshing and the mild palate and thin mouthfeel make it a very smooth and easy beer to down. The 5.3% ABV and flavorful palate make this an ideal session beer.

Overall, a good standard witbier that simply follows the form instead of trying to do everything at once like some other American beers of the style. 
Grade: 7/10