Beer Review: Villeinage (Elder Pine Brewing and Blending)

Beer Review: Villeinage (Elder Pine Brewing and Blending)

Villeinage by Elder Pine Brewing and Blending

The final of the “video game streaming night” collection of beers to be reviewed. This is the fourth from that series. Also, just like I did last November (you can read up on it all in the November Recap 2019) in honor of NaNoWriMo I will be doing a blog post each night. It will mostly be beer reviews, but some will be different, brewery reviews, events, news, etc. This year will also be a bit different, as I have a road trip coming up around the 11th. (Driving out to Indianapolis to visit the Vonnegut Museum and Library on his birthday.)

This series of beer reviews comes from the night a week ago when playing at Drew’s for his Knights of Nostalgia streaming page. You can visit his page and follow by clicking the name. The other beers of the series were:

Last year for November, I challenged myself to try one new beer each day (30 new beers), and to do one new blog post each day (30 new blog posts), as well as try and get my 10,000 steps each day, and even try and walk at least one mile. Ironically, the only day I didn’t make my 10K step count was the 2nd day of the month (early morning issues, work, and going straight to a Halloween / remembrance party at a friend’s house) led to me not hitting my 10K that day. (Six years ago today we lost a very good friend – Doug; Doug the Slug, and last year Myers had a party to celebrate his life as well as Halloween, but due to COVID this year, that’s not in the cards.)

So for the first blog post of November 2020, it will be the final beer of the series I recently did – which was four incredible beers I picked up at Breski’s Beverages and drank for the streaming night on Knights of Nostalgia. (This was technically from The Barley Mow in Reading, not one of the ones I got from Breski’s, but I do believe I’ve seen Elder Pine Brewing and Blending at Breski’s before.)

Be sure to check out the streams sometimes. It’s Drew’s page and he is the lead streamer on it, I sometimes accompany him, as do other people like Rome, Kelsey, Rory, Dan, Youngblood, Kerrie, Esteban, and others. Its a lot of fun, its typically older games – NES, SNES, Atari, Sega, etc, but with some newer games (like Friday the 13th, or some of the Final Fantasies he’s done, or recently we did The Last of Us). It can get vulgar and sometimes the humor runs ‘dark’ or ‘blue’, but nothing is made to purposefully offend anyone or to upset the masses. Its definitely worth a watch at least once and see if it’s your cup of tea or not.

So this Villeinage beer is one I picked up at The Barley Mow in Reading from our Reading trip. You can click here to read more about it: “The Birthday Trip to Reading – The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly.”

I have never heard of the word of “Villeinage” and honestly assumed it was a made up word, but, when writing it out, it doesn’t get the little ‘red scribble line’ under it, meaning its a real word, so I looked it up on


or vil·lain·age, vil·lan·age, vil·len·age

[ vil-uh-nij ]SEE SYNONYMS FOR villeinage ON THESAURUS.COM


  • the tenure by which a villein held land and tenements from a lord.
  • the condition or status of a villein. Definition Villeinage.

This all led to me then wondering exactly the true definition of Villein. I have a pretty good idea from the above, and I don’t think its an evil mastermind or evil doer. But lets see.


[ vil-uhn, -eyn, vi-leyn ]SEE SYNONYMS FOR villein ON THESAURUS.COM


  • a member of a class of partially free persons under the feudal system, who were serfs with respect to their lord but had the rights and privileges of freemen with respect to others. Definition of Villein.

There you all go, now this has been both an educational beer review, as well as hopefully entertaining, as well as providing you with the actual review of the beer itself. You never knew you’d get so much out of just one single beer review did you? You’re welcome.

Ok, lets get on with it, and get to the beer review.

Villeinage by Elder Pine Brewing and Blending

Beer: Villeinage
Brewery: Elder Pine Brewing and Blending
Style: Farmhouse Ale – Saison
ABV: 4%
IBU: None
Untappd Description: Table-strength Saison brewed with an insane amount of spelt malt & raw wheat for the creamiest body a 4% abv beer can offer. Heavily dry-hopped w/ Pacific Jade at a staggering rate of 3lb/bbl for bright citrus notes that meld perfectly with the stone fruit, banana and bubblegum aromas & flavors derived from our house saison yeast.

Dry hopped saison got my interest piqued right away. And I believe is why I ordered a can of this while Drew ordered some food and I had a draft while we were at The Barley Mow during our Reading trip. Also, always kind of interested in how flavorful beers can be at the lower spectrum of ABVs, 3%, 4%, 4.5%, etc.

Appearance for this is light, yellow / golden. It looks like a cross between a saison and an IPA, but more on the lighter, effervescent saison side. There is a lot of ‘bubblage’ in this bad boy, almost champagne like. A little bit of head to it and nice lacing on the glass.

The nose on this has some interesting differences to it. There is a citrus hop note from the dry hopping, there is also a very yeasty, kind of funky smell that emanates from the house yeast that Elder Pine Brewing and Blending uses, there is some wheat, bread, almost a spent grain note, a sweet almost to ripening banana, and a slight bit of lemon.

This is super light, airy even, the 4% is forefront in the mind because of how light, refreshing and drinkable this is. First tasting notes are funky saison, sweet to ripe banana – almost banana bread like, a yeasty champagne note, there is a lot going on with this as you can tell. Its got the classic funkyness of a saison, but with an edge to it, from the dry hopping, almost giving it a New England IPA style tasting to it. The dry hopping adds some juicy citrus, lemon notes to this that I think blends pretty well with the notes from the yeast and the saison and the raw wheat. There is some notes of stone fruit, a wee bit of bubblegum flavor but very (extremely) subtle, but it blend with the citrus and lemon of the hops into a nice combination. Nothing is super strong or overpowering or too much, and the degrees of the complexity to this all work together and stay in synch. Its also interesting that with the low ABV I feel like it keeps it lighter than it probably really is (like a trick of the brain type thing). It has a light crisp almost pilsner like finish, and there is some zest, some funk to it that gives you a nice aftertaste to this. This is a very interesting beer and was a good ending beer to my night of good beers.

My Untappd Rating: ***.75
Global Untappd Rating: 3.79 (as of 11.1.20)

As I said earlier, I like to make November a challenge month for me. And like I did with last year, I’m doing the same again this year – attempting to do the following each day in November:

  • One new beer
  • One new blog post
  • 10,000 Steps
  • One mile walk (or run)
  • Try to do some kind of lifting

Every other day I’d like to have a book read, so fifteen books read in November. I’m up to 76 so far for the year, so I’m a bit behind, as my reading goal for this year is 105 (meaning I need 29 more books to read, so 15 in November and 14 in December).

Its 10:50PM now, and I’ve gotten my walk in, gotten my steps in, did some light lifting, and finishing my beer. Despite having a recent string of drinking nights (Wednesday – after a ten hour day at work I walked down to Rubber Soul and met Drew and A. Parys, and then walked to Howling Henry’s; Thursday – a streaming session with Drew and Rory; Friday – Boneshire Brew Works’ 4th Anniversary Celebration; Saturday – Halloween and the yearly Halloween party at Justin and Aimee’s). But I’ve survived, and going slow with just a small beer tonight. It’s ‘Bar Harbor Blueberry Ale’ by The Atlantic. Nursed this while reading and writing and having this god awful Eagles / Cowboys game on in the background.

Thanks for reading everyone!

To see the others of this series check them out here:

You can also see some of our other beer reviews here:

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-B. Kline

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