Brew Review – Alba & Petraea Saison by Odd Breed Wild Ales

It is insanely difficult to write anything about the beers at Odd Breed Wild Ales.

Not because they’re not good, they are. In fact, it’s one of the best breweries in the state, if not the planet.

It’s just difficult to find anything to say that doesn’t mirror or outright plagiarize the absolutely incredible notes that founder and brewer Matt Manthe delivers for each and every one of his beers.

If you haven’t yet, you need to follow Odd Breed on Instagram just to take a look at the posts that Matt provides for each beer release. Even if their kinds of beer isn’t your thing, it’s still worth it to just read and learn.

The details that he puts into the captions and the knowledge that you can tell he has are just massive in scope and nuanced in depth. Kind of like the beers.

So when I visited him on a day off to record what I anticipated to be one episode of the Florida Beer Podcast and ended up getting three, he was kind enough to offer me a beer. The beer I went for was Alba and Petraea Saison (Saison, 5.5% ABV).

First of all, I love a well-crafted saison. It is surprisingly difficult to find one that is crafted as well as a saison should be. It’s meant to be a warmly fermented summery beer, but that doesn’t mean it can be made quickly and cheaply.

A good season takes time, and Matt knows this.

The name comes from the fact that this beer, as most of the other Odd Breed beers do, spent time aging in both French and American Oak between 18 and 42 months. French Oak is the Quercus petraea, and the Quercus alba is the American, which is why it’s so important for bloggers like me to take pictures of the information provided on the tap lists, you know? It’s not totally plagarized…

Once blended, you get these really awesome little pips of the woody vanilla flavor that oak is so well known to depart. It might even lend a touch of a soft creamy quality to both the flavor and the mouthfeel, but it’s not enough to mask the fact that this was a wild fermented beer. And if there is anybody that knows how to use wild yeasts, it is Matt Manthe.

The yeast strain used lends wonderful qualities of honeydew, a touch of cantaloupe, a touch of lemon, and maybe even some papaya and guava on the very end of the taste. It is an experience to be studied and savored, even more so than many of the wonderfully crafted beers that I tend to review.

It’s been an absolute pleasure being able to drink when I can from Odd Breed, and hopefully you will find the podcast episodes just as interesting. I definitely did recording them, but it’s still up to me to make sure and get back so I can try more.

There’s definitely going to be a ton of great reading material to check out while I do.

Drink Florida Craft,

Dave
@floridabeerblog
floridabeerblog@gmail.com

Florida Beer Blog is a part of Florida Beer Media. Find us at FloridaBeerMedia.com.

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