This week, I'm picking up from last week's focus on a Mosaic pale ale and taking a look at a beer using a single hop made from one of the newer gangs in town who propped up shop in the little subdivision of Abacoa in Jupiter: Civil Society Brewing Company's Sauvin Blanc.
This is a beer named after and featured with Nelson Sauvin hops. According to the New Zealand Hops grower cooperative, the hop was developed at New Zealand's Plant and Food Research in the '90s and subsequently released in 2000:
“The essential oil profile displays characteristics of ‘fresh crushed gooseberries’ a descriptor often used for the grape variety Sauvignon Blanc, giving rise to this variety’s name.”
It has been described as the quintessential New Zealand hop.
The brewers at Civil Society have decided to take this hop and produce a beer that puts it to the test; not in an American pale ale or an IPA, but in a saison, a beer style known for its spicy and floral qualities.
I got this in a crowler (a 32 ounce can that you can have filled like a growler) to go after spending a bit of time sampling their other beers (perhaps for future #FloridaBeerFriday posts), and cracked it open the next day.
It pours with a huge frothy stark white head of foam. The color is sunshine yellow with a slight haze to it, but still brilliantly saturated with colorful yellows. Aromas burst forth with lemon, pepper, lots of floral tones with hints of melon and pineapple bouncing throughout. The flavor is slightly fruity with a lot of melon, but plays on the tongue like a white wine with finishing notes of a woodsy character.
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Overall it's a very wine-forward beer, and drinks quite a bit like a Sauvignon Blanc. However the saison style still finds its way to be the base here, and never truly gets lost in all the hubbub of the Nelson hops.
Sauvin Blanc is currently available at the Civil Society Brewing Company tap room by the glass or by take away growler.
Civil Society Brewing Company is located at 1200 Town Center Drive., #101, Jupiter. Call 561-855-6680, or visit civilsocietybrewing.com.
Doug Fairall is a craft-beer blogger who focuses on Florida beers. He is a Certified Beer Server and has been a homebrewer since 2009. For beer things in your Twitter feed, follow him @DougFairall and find the latest beer pics on Clean Plate's Instagram.