Worker’s Comp Saison
1 12 oz bottle, $1.89++, 4.8% ABV
Purchased at Harvest Wine and Spirits, West Hartford
This is the review where I’m supposed to say, “Brewmaster Phil Markowski has written the book on farmhouse ales – literally!” I think I’ve read and heard that sentence now like 9 times in the last four months.
It is, quite seriously, the Connecticut beer world equivalent of the Connecticut museum world’s “George Washington slept here!”
Yes, Phil Markowski is to Connecticut beer as George Washington is to the United States of America. At least inasmuch that every time one mentions him, one must mention that his wrote the book – literally! – on farmhouse ales.
Which is pretty cool, actually. It also means that this saison better be darn tasty.
Two Roads Says:
A traditional farmhouse ale made with a very expressive yeast strainthat contributes an array of tropical fruit, spice flavors and aromatics. Brewed with a variety of harvest grains including barley, wheat, oats and rye as was likely the case with farmhouse brewers of yore. The result is a complex, refreshing and distinctive example of this esoteric style. Intensely fruity (passion fruit, pineapple, mango, lychee), slightly spicy (clove, white pepper)
This is certainly Two Roads’s most complex beer. Yes, even moreso than their limited release barrel aged Russian imperial stout. There’s a lot going on here and it’s clear that it was brewed by a guy who wrote the book – literally! – on farmhouse ales.
He seems like a humble and quiet guy, so tracing his brewing roots is a little challenging. I know for a fact he help start up a little brewery in New Haven called New England Brewing Company. NEBCO, of course, has moved a few miles to Woodbridge and is one of the premier breweries in, dare I say it, the nation.
He also more recently spent 16 years at Southampton Publick House Brew Pub on Long Island. There, he built up quite a cult following and became regarded as one of America’s most respected brewmeisters. After all, he wrote the book – literally! – on farmhouse ales.
The following picture is literally from The Oatmeal and I literally love it.
Let’s read what Two Roads has to say about their star: “Brewmaster Phil Markowski comes from an engineering background. After dabbling in home brewing and winning a few competitions back in the 1980’s Phil made the bright decision to go into the craft beer world as a career. A long career at various breweries has led to dozens of medals from the GABF and WBC, along with many other medals at regional and international competitions. Phil also wrote the book on Farmhouse Ales, literally, and is thrilled to be in his dream job: working with friends to create a brewery from scratch with state-of-the-art equipment.”
Yes, they really said it too.
The saison is, as you’d sort of hope, my favorite of the Two Roads regular lineup. It is complex and smooth. Fruity but not sweet. Spicy but not annoying. I’ve come to really, really love Belgian farmhouse ales and to now be able to buy locally made six-packs for relatively cheap makes me happy. And it’s sessionable to boot.
Overall Rating: A
Rating vs. Similar style: A