Tonight I will be checking out a new beer from Southern Tier Brewing Company called Southern Tier Grand Arbor. It is a Saison with 8% Alcohol By Volume (ABV) brewed with maple syrup, and as of now it is a limited release beer.
Southern Tier Grand Arbor is a hazy, deep golden colored beer, sporting a voluminous white head, which leaves strings of lacing behind as the beer is consumed.
The nose is centered on Belgian yeast characteristics, banana and bubble gum with some spiciness, with a faint maple accent.
The maple syrup takes a more active roll in the taste, providing earthy notes, complementing sweet pale malts, hints of wheat grain, peppery and spicy notes in the transition, with a bit of herbal and spicy hops in the finish. The mouth is medium bodied with a dry finish.
People who aren’t very familiar with beers utilizing maple syrup usually expect them to be much more sweet than they usually end up being, but the sugars in the syrup are more fermentable than some in the beer wort, so most of the sweetness from the syrup is consumed by the yeast during fermentation.
It does work very well in Southern Tier Grand Arbor, and from what I can recall this is the first Saison using syrup that I have come across. It is very easy drinking for an 8% ABV beer, with a nice array of tastes to explore. Definitely worth checking out.
Southern Tier Grand Arbor : A-
Beer Reviews by Prof Sudz