ELYSIAN BREWING and GREEN FLASH BREWING’s collaboration saison THE RED QUEEN last week. This took place at City Beer Store in San Francisco on a Wednesday night, and truly, I chose this event more out of convenience than anything else, seeing as how I’ve bagged on Elysian’s beers in the past & was only a fan of the Green Flash half of the partnership. And though I don’t know who’s truly pulling the strings with this beer, let it be said that Elysian is definitely getting a halo effect at a bare minimum from helping to produce this outstanding beer. Allow me to tell you about it.
THE RED QUEEN is a dark orange saison to die for. Fruity, incredibly juicy and just-out-of-the-vat fresh, this beer takes the saison sideways. It has a wonderfully earthy smell, which is something you’d expect, right? But it made its mark with me for its robust flavors of tangerine, honey and yeasts, all mingling together in one of the more fruit-forward farmhouse ales I’ve ever tasted. I’m willing to bet there are some similarities in pedigree with the GREEN FLASH SAISON I wrote about before and which currently resides in the Hedonist Beer Jive 75. That’s a picture of THE RED QUEEN right there, and yes, that’s the dollar I tipped for the privilege of being able to drink one. I don’t know if it’s a one-shot-and-done sort of beer or if there’s a potential for bottling & draft accounts, but like the Green Flash Saison from two years ago, this one’s easily scoring a big 9/10 on the HBJ scale.