I poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. It was bottled on 7/17/13 and cost $4.25 ($0.35 per ounce).
Appearance: An almost glowing golden/orange hue. Extremely hazy body.
Pours to a large, white, fluffy head which is slow to dissipate and
leaves plenty of lacing on the glass.
Smell: Typical Belgian yeast esters with a general fruity sweetness and some spice rack notes.
Tastes: The funny thing about Ommegang Scythe & Sickle Harvest Ale
is that it’s not especially complex, and yet it seems to be a good
example of a Belgian-style beer. The yeast is accounting for a lot of
the flavor and nearly all of the aroma. And since this isn’t a typical
Belgian style like a pale, amber or any kind of Trappist style, it’s
impressive that a specialty grain brew by an American brewery can seem
so authentically Belgian.
The grain bill to this beer is quite interesting. In addition to barley -
wheat, oats and rye are used in the brewing process with rye being the
most predominate of them. The palette has a familiar Belgian pale ale
base, but with a consistent spiciness throughout, akin to black pepper,
thanks to the rye. There’s a lightly dry bitterness on the second half,
almost powdery or doughy-like, though I wouldn’t describe it as hoppy
per se. A hint of banana or vanilla emerges as well, imparting so juicy
character to keep the beer from being too arid. It’s a tasty, satisfying
palette overall, but a little overpriced.
Drinkability: At only 5.8% ABV, Scythe & Sickle is one of Ommegang’s
lighter beers, but it has the flavor intensity of the rest of their
line. The mouthfeel is energetic, but contained with a fairly smooth
finish. There is a lingering dryness in the aftertaste, but it’s easily
tolerable. It’s quite tempting to throw back multiple servings.