Fantôme Printemps is a seasonal saison or a saison seasonal or a saison saison*, if you’re into a beer wordplay…
Brasserie Fantôme may produce more variety than any other brewery of its size in Belgium. This is even more impressive when you consider that they’re largely working within the “Saison” flavor palette. Printemps, French for Spring, is one the brewery’s rotating seasonal beers. Printemps is itself a unique beer from the unique brewery: the recipe changes every year.
Appearance: Lightly hazy amber/copper, beige head, great retention.
Aroma: Spicy, herbal, citrus zest, tea, basil, sage, lightly woody.
Taste: Spicy, caramel, fruity.
Overall Impression: This year’s edition is complex and on the herbal side with typical Fantôme yeast spiciness. It has a fruity tartness that, in combination with the lively carbonation, gives the beer a peppy, zingy, refreshing character. Despite this, it also has enough heft from the higher ABV to stand up to a blustery spring day.
Availability: Limited distribution and seasonal.
*Saison is French for season. The beer style was named after the “saisonaires,” the seasonal farm workers who would work the farms of Wallonia and swill down the low alcohol farmhouse made beer.