Saison de Peche
The beer scenes in Houston, Austin, and Dallas may be huge now, but the first Texas brewers started elsewhere—specifically in New Braunfels, a German town less than an hour south of the capital. Back then, the New Braunfels Brewing Company kept locals happy from roughly the turn of the 19th century right until one of those infamous Prohibition raids shut things down in 1925.
Fast forward almost 100 years, and a young couple came across the story of New Braunfels Brewing Company while doing research for their own Central Texas brewing endeavour, and they decided a modern reincarnation would be an appropriate homage to local pinthouse pioneers. The new New Braunfels Brewing Company has been active for nearly a decade now, standing out in a much different Texas brewing scene largely by focusing on wheats and sours.
Appearance and Aroma
Though the name has “saison” in it and this beer started life as a wheat (a barrel-aged wheat saison ale “refermented like hell” with Texas peaches, per the bottle), Saison de Peche has a slightly darker hue to it. It’s hard to say whether “slightly darker than a wheat” or “almost lager-ish” feels more accurate for the color. The nose here offers more clarity. While perhaps less aromatic than you’d expect from a fruit beer, peach is prominent alongside perhaps a more traditionally cider-y scent. You’ll certainly know some acidic, sour goodness awaits.
For fans of the fruit, the beer style, or both, Saison de Peche will almost certainly deliver.”
Though you won’t see the word “sour” on the label, be prepared to pucker at that first sip. Saison de Peche delivers a highly acidic but still slightly sweet taste, slightly reminiscent of those gummy peach-y rings beloved by kids. The intensity of that first impression gets balanced out quickly. This saison is pretty light on the tongue, and the only thing lingering is peach, which smooths out the sour tones more and more over time. So if a first swig startles you, take a moment to compose yourself and give it a few more tries to allow the fruit component to become more prominent.
Maybe Florida oranges and New York State apples have better marketing teams, but Texas peaches are definitely A Thing in this state. If you think about it, they’re almost too perfect of a pairing with this reincarnation of a historic Texas brewer specializing in wheats and sours. For fans of the fruit, the beer style, or both, Saison de Peche will almost certainly deliver. But if you’ve got hesitations about either, the peachy punch of this sour seasonal is probably best experienced by stealing a sip from someone else’s pint glass first.