Fall is my favorite season of the year, the start to feel a crispness in the air, cook and eat some hearty food, watch football on TV every weekend, maybe even catch some playoff baseball when the Red Sox decide to field a competitive team. This weekend felt like the real start of fall, I had a slab of pork in the slow cooker and watched more NFL football than I want to admit. While some people made a full transition to Octoberfest and pumpkin beers the minute the calendar hit September (or even before), we still have some days ahead that will feel more like summer than fall. We are supposed to crack 80 in Boston every day for the rest of this week, not exactly weather than screams for rich malty beers. We have plenty of cold months ahead, no need to rush into dark beer season. This is one of the reasons why seasonal creep bothers me so much, I want to continue enjoying summery beers until it really starts to get cold. Backlash had this in mind with their latest release, a late-summer saison named Oath. Backlash Oath is a sessionable saison brewed with two strains of yeast, substantial Citra and Sorachi Ace hops along with toasted peppercorns and kaffir lime. It is available for a limited time on draft and in 22 oz. bottles.
Backlash Oath pours a hazy straw yellow with a minimal white head. The scent is a mixture of pungent fruity hops and some spicy yeast. The yeast leads the flavor, notes of pepper, apple and pear. The beer also packs substantial hop flavor, notes of lemon, honeydew, grass and mango. The peppercorns and lime are both present but subtle, nicely complementing the spicy yeast and citrusy hops. The malts are mild here but add a little backbone and some whole grain cracker flavor. Oath is extremely light bodied and easy to drink, at 5% ABV it fits some definitions of a session beer. The finish is crisp with just a touch of estery yeast and hops in the aftertaste. Backlash Oath is a perfect beer for the last warm days of the year, light and crushable but full flavored and complex. Hoppy Boston score: 4.25/5.
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