I thought I’d keep the Belgian White theme going here at The Brew Club with a review of Saranac’s Belgian White. Liz recently reviewed Long Trail’s Belgian White and liked it enough to give it a very respectable 4 star ranking! I also enjoyed Long Trail’s version of this popular style and while its fresh in my mind I thought I’d give Saranac’s version a try.
Its been over a year since we’ve tried anything from Saranac Brewing. The Saranac Caramel Porter, which style-wise isn’t anything like a Belgian White, was enjoyable enough to get one of our first 4 star ratings. So, Saranac can make good beers, but how does the Belgian White rate?
I’ll cut to the chase. Not so good.
Compared to the Long Trail Belgian White, Ommegang Witte, Hoegaarden or even Blue Moon, this was thoroughly disappointing to me. The Saranac Belgian White had all the ‘secret ingredients’ of a nice Belgian White, but it just doesn’t compare really. Let’s start from the top.
Pouring this Saranac beer, it really didn’t create much of a head. Usually, one expects that foamy, pure-white head from a Belgian White, but as you can see in the picture it was kind of weak. If I had the ability for time-lapsed photography, you would see that head completely gone in about a minute from pouring. So, it struck me as a little dull.
The color was nice, a little darker than other Belgian Whites I’ve had recently, and while the beer does appear to be slightly unfiltered, it was also comparatively much clearer than the other Belgian Whites previously mentioned. As a matter of fact, the longer this beer sits in my glass, the clearer it becomes! By the time I’m getting to this very paragraph, the Saranac Belgian White is practically clear in my glass. (I do reviews in ‘real-time’ – so there)
Not that the wimpy head, relative clearness or the darker color make this a disappointing beer, but the aroma and taste just weren’t there either. Smelling the beer, I could just barely – barely pick up any of the spices or citrus that one comes to expect from this kind of beer. I thought the malts were more pronounced than anything. Yawn.
Same with the taste. This beer had a barely perceptible citrus flavor, and almost nothing from the spice department. Otherwise, it was a light feeling beer that was easy to drink, not heavy or sticky and might make a good summer beer as many wheat beers do. But, with so many other choices in this crowded beer style, you can do much better than the Saranac Belgian White which really stuck me as watery and uninspired.
No Soup for you Saranac Belgian White! Rating:
What do you think of the Saranac Belgian White? What is YOUR favorite Belgian White beer? Why not let us know by commenting below?