In keeping with the summer beer theme that we’ve boasted this week, I decided it’s time to take a look at Cape Ann’s Sunrise Saison.
Touted as a saison brewed with strawberries (250 pounds worth, the brewery’s site notes), I hoped for the best, but expected the worst. I’m not the world’s biggest fan of fruit in beer; I’ve found few with the subtle notes of fruit and more that taste like the beer has been assaulted by a Jolly Rancher.
That said, the Sunrise Saison was a pleasant surprise.The beer itself pours a brilliant golden hay color and emits a tart nose full of the advertised ingredients. A nice head of tiny beads retains well for the first few minutes no matter how delicately the beer is pours.
The sweet and slightly bitter flavors of the strawberries and rhubarb shine through, but are balanced by a grassy, Belgian yeast flavor that tastes a bit bready. The bitter tartness of the fruit leads to a slightly dry finish.
The fruit itself isn’t over the top and it’s pretty balanced beer that exceeded any expectations I had. It’s not something I’d drink every day, but I certainly won’t be shying away from it either.