The weather has been getting warm as of late, and I've been feeling more and more outdoorsy. Thus I had the urge to play Wii Sports Tennis. The game can make one surprisingly sweaty, and so naturally a refreshing beverage is a great accompaniment. I was going to try out a handful of summer seasonal beers, such as Goose Island Summertime, Bell's Oberon, Two Brothers' Dog Days, etc. However, I found The Bruery Saison de Lente on sale. I've been wanting to try it ever since having their Saison Rue, and I figured that a style of beer that was originally invented to quench the thirst of dehydrated Belgian farmhands would be good enough to keep me going through an exhausting bout of Wii Tennis.
Saison de Lente pours with a spectacularly meringue-like head that never dissipates. It is light amber in color, and has a nose full of funk, cloves, and a surprisingly noticeable amount of hops. The beer has a very light body, but is loaded with flavor. It tastes of banana, clove, citrusy hops, and earthy funk. The beer is fermented (at least partially) with Brettanomyces, which causes it to be quite dry. This is what gives it its pronounced funkiness. Saison de Lente is more bitter than most saisons that I have had. I liked the beer, although the combination of strong, clove-like phenols and substantial hop bitterness always makes beer taste overly medicinal.
Saison de Lente is certainly refreshing, and as this was exactly the quality I was looking for in a pairing for Wii Tennis, I suppose it was a successful match. Unfortunately, I did not find myself in need of refreshment, as my opponent (a good friend of mine who will remain anonymous) did not necessitate any exertion on my part. In short, I whooped his ass over and over, and did not come close to breaking a sweat. Not that he is terrible at Wii Tennis, but it takes a special player to compete with my skill level, which according to the game's calculations is literally off the charts. Anyway, it was an enjoyable experience, and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys Belgian farmhouse ales. Next time, I might try Saison Rue, or perhaps my favorite saison of all time, Saison Dupont.
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