It took me a long time to come around to yoga. The whole process, from the “mountain pose” (which let’s be honest, is really just standing) to the teachers who say things like, “really sink into the pose and explore your sacrum,” just seemed so ridiculous. Now I’m all about exploring my sacrum through bendy poses that hurt like a mother f#*@$er. My issue is that I’m quick to judge. It was the same thing with saisons. The saison is a relatively ancient, European style of beer that also goes by the catch-all title, “farmhouse ale.” Traditionally, these were literally brewed on farms, using leftover fruit or herbs after the harvest, and consumed by the farmhands the following summer. Picture a bunch of European farmers plowing the fields all day, then breaking in the late afternoon for cheese and beer. This is the beer they’re drinking.
The saison is a really broad umbrella with a lot of very different beers beneath it. They’re typically low in alcohol and downright refreshing to drink. And I hated them the minute I saw them. I had an instantaneous, primeval reaction to the style, mostly because of that damn name, “saison.” The name just sounded so precious. Like you have to wear a scarf and say it with a French accent.
See how judgy I am?
Fast forward several years, and I can’t get enough of the saison. Especially this new one from Starr Hill, the Daily Grind Peppercorn Farmhouse Ale. There’s nothing precious about this beer, which is part of Starr Hill’s limited release Heavy Rotation series. It’s bright and effervescent, the way all saisons should be, but with a firm malty body and a guilty-pleasure kind of sweetness that delivers waves of citrus, pineapple in particular, before getting washed away by a tart finish. This is the kind of beer you want to drink on a hot afternoon, after long trail run. Or you know, working in the fields, if that’s what you’re into it. Or after an hour and a half of hot yoga. Now that’s a day—yoga and a saison. Look how much I’ve matured over the years!