brewed commercially in Ireland was lovely, and Oblivious has given me some fantastic homemade ones. But elsewhere it's not been so much fun.
In my amateur opinion, saison is a style that's all about nuance and subtlety, and the likes of Wild Beer Co.'s Epic Saison and Freigest's Sauer Power ignored that and went for bombastic, all-guns-blazing, barnstormers. Sadly this criticism can also, to an extent, be levelled at the latest one to cross my path: Wallonia by Thornbridge, recently on keg in Against the Grain. We are spared any of the more extreme burnt plastic of the other two I've mentioned, but there's also none of that mild pepperiness which good saison always has. Instead the hazy orange beer exhibits something of an aftershave spice, putting me more in mind of a heavy clovey weissbier than anything else. It's quite a decent sipper, but the dry fruit and spice flavours become a little overwhelming as it goes down.
How about keeping it simple, saison brewers? That might work.