Mar 20, 2012

Stillwater / Mikkeller Two Gypsies: Our Side

Our Side photo

Two of the more celebrated gypsy brewers (those without a brewery of their own) over the past couple of years would have to be Maryland’s Stillwater Artisanal Ales and and Denmark’s Mikkeller. Both companies produce some of the tastiest stuff available — it was only a matter of time before they came together to create something like Our Side.

The beer is a classic Saison with a refined and clean palate that features the traditional funkiness of the style as well as a decent bit of hop character. Weighing in at 7.5% ABV, the beer is a little heftier than most of the style, but still refreshingly wonderful to drink.


Our Side pours a golden amber in color with a large and rocky off-white head.


A light saison-like funk greets you first along with a bit of light fruit (apple, pear), grassy hops, a little pine resin and subtle spices.


The fruits, spicy yeast and funk all arrive immediately upon the first sip and fade smoothly to a fairly hopped-up back end. The grassy hops carry a good bit of pine that at first sort of competes with the light fruits. After the beer has had a moment to settle into the glass, however, everything comes together nicely. The alcohol is fairly well masked and doesn’t really impart any influence on the flavors as the crisp mouthfeel reinvigorates the palate.


This is certainly one of the tastier collaborative efforts I’ve tasted in some time, but then again, much like stouts, I’m a huge fan of the Saison style. This one isn’t what I would call traditional, though it does carry a relatively classic profile. The increased hop character initially competes a bit, but eventually is tamed by a well rounded funk and fruit combination.


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