Farmhouse Ale, bottle conditioned and unfiltered (as it should be). “Pair with sunshine.”
Rockmill Brewery, Lancaster, OH 6% ABV
By Bill Lau
Posted August 3, 2014
We have a secret here in Ohio. It’s a brewery started on a former horse farm southeast of Columbus, just outside of the town of Lancaster. A brewery that chose to focus on Belgian style beers, no less, and for a very good reason. The chemistry of their artesian well water just so happens to be a perfect match to the water of Wallonia, Belgium. And by one of those interesting cosmic twists, the brewer’s epiphany beer was Saison Dupont; Brasserie Dupont being located in (wait for it) the Wallonia region of Belgium.
I first became aware of Rockmill several years ago when I tried their Tripel at Dilly Cafe in Mariemont. This led to my purchasing a bottle to take home, I enjoyed it so much. Until recently, their beers were only offered in corked 750 ml bottles. Seeing as many of the beers are pushing 8-9% ABV or more, I personally find that to be a be a lot of beer for one sitting, so unless my wife wants to share a bottle, I often pass. That has now changed. Imagine my delight upon finding several Rockmill beers in 375 ml corked bottles. Perfectly sized for one person. Since I’ve been finding saisons to be quite delightful this summer, I grabbed the Petite Saison.
I poured the bulk of the bottle into a stemmed tulip glass, leaving a small amount of beer and the yeast sediment behind.
Appearance was a cloudy, pale golden-yellow topped with over a half inch of near-white foam that slowly settled to a persistent, thin cap.
Great, funky Belgian ale aromas – earthy, sour fruit tang, yeast. Inviting.
Body was on the light side. Very fine carbonation bead and light CO2 level. Texture was a little flat – would have preferred a bit more carbonation.
Flavors started off fruity with a gentle tartness. Some earthy and spice notes. Coriander, lemongrass, lemon zest, hint of tangerine peel. Refreshing and flavorful brew. I swirled the remaining beer in the bottle to rouse the yeast into suspension and topped off the glass. This added a nice earthy, yeasty complexity to the flavor profile. It also added a bit to the body. The appearance became much cloudier, of course, too.
Overall a very good beer! Rockmill is brewing up Belgian styles right. Oh, and I definitely recommend adding the yeast sediment!
Rating Appearance: 4/5 Aroma: 8/10 Palate: 3.5/5 Flavor: 8/10 Overall: 15.5/20
With yeast added App: 4/5 Aroma: 8.5/10 Palate: 4/5 Flavor: 8.5/10 Overall: 16.7/20