The Saison du Smeirlap! presents itself in the distinctive European 330mL (11.2oz) bottle, a commendable departure from the conventional 12oz size. Pouring into the Rastal Harmony glass, the brew exhibits a crystal-clear straw hue adorned with a fleeting, white foam. The brevity of the foam’s tenure doesn’t detract from the visual appeal, setting the stage for what lies within.


The olfactory experience of Saison du Smeirlap! is a delightful journey. The yeast takes the lead, creating an atmosphere akin to stepping into a French bakery at the crack of dawn. Oxbow’s house yeast intertwines with milled, heirloom grain, and the subtle sweetness of lime blossom honey. This aromatic symphony is further enriched by layers of Key lime pie, hints of moldy white grapefruit, and an array of captivating Brett-driven notes. The funky barnyard undertones are perceptible but artfully restrained, resulting in an ideal saison aroma.


Savoring the Saison du Smeirlap! is a nuanced experience where modest sourness, rated at a 4/10 level, allows the beer’s full character to shine. The refreshment is remarkable, offering a buoyant and slightly salty profile reminiscent of lemonade. The beer’s herbal, noble hops from its base contribute to an impeccable balance, with the interplay of sour and bitter dancing on the palate. Notably lacking in excessive sweetness, the brew maintains an unusual yet appealing harmony of flavors. The funkiness is judiciously moderated, ensuring a pleasurable tasting journey. Zesty lemon and lime notes persist through the finish, leaving behind minimal lingering acidity.


The mouthfeel of Saison du Smeirlap! aligns with its refreshing character, inviting drinkers into a lively and effervescent experience. The beer’s moderate sourness contributes to its overall vibrancy, while a subtle saltiness enhances its quenching quality. The absence of cloying sweetness allows the nuanced interplay of flavors to unfold on the palate, creating a well-rounded and satisfying mouthfeel.


Oxbow’s Saison du Smeirlap! emerges as a distinctive and captivating addition to the world of beers. By infusing the ready-to-drink Taras Boulba from Belgium with their house mixed cultures and a touch of Brett, Oxbow crafts a brew that defies convention. The judiciously balanced aroma, nuanced taste, and refreshing mouthfeel make this saison a standout choice for those seeking a unique and enjoyable drinking experience. The collaboration with Brasserie de la Senne of Brussels adds a layer of complexity, resulting in a beer that pays homage to its roots while pushing the boundaries of traditional brewing.