Victory Releases The Most Recent Version of Saison du Buff – or – How I Discovered The Joy of Discomfort

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Collaboration beers are a new thing to us at Victory. But when we jumped into the fray, we were in with both feet and all parts. Saison du BUFF was our first collaborative effort in a season (this spring) that witnessed three collaborations, all different and all totally rewarding. I say ‘both feet and all parts’ because our virginity-vanquishing brew was conducted with two of the biggest names in craft brewing, Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and Greg Koch of Stone Brewing Company. Nothing you do with these guys is under the proverbial radar.

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Look for Victory’s version of Saison du Buff on shelves in late August 2010

But we happen to know a Sam and Greg that your average beer aficionado may not. We’ve hoisted one another’s cases onto transport trucks and rolled one another’s kegs into festivals, all in the name of getting the job done, in a time when craft beers garnered far less attention and when we related to one another with the giddy, excited enthusiasm of working on a dream that may not actually work out.

But time has marched on nicely for our dreams as a hungry audience has joined our battle for full flavored beer. And now that audience looks on critically as the spotlight swings toward our brew. Would it be worthy? Would it achieve the beer forum scores that our collective beers had? Did we freakin’ care?
Yes, we did care. Deeply. And a as much as we trusted one another and one another’s sensibilities, I may be the first to suggest that there was some discomfort in tossing our hat into a collective ring with such a bright spotlight on it.

So there we were in January, talking bier de garde, then professing our love of sage, then talking protest poetry, all to arrive at Saison du BUFF, a brew that astounded all of us when we popped the first Stone-brewed bottles.

We stepped away from the bomb of being the strongest, hoppiest, wackiest beer, and we transported ourselves to summer and breathed deeply of the herbal bounty and thirst and hunger that summer bestows upon us beer drinkers. And from that point we created a beer that would be both novel and comfortable. Comfortable, in the way it pulled together flavors that attracted us in foods and drink. I swear that on my third sip of Saison du BUFF, my mind and stomach screamed ‘MUST GET ROAST CHICKEN’ at me as the savory broth of herbs and malty delight conjured up real desires. So, lesson learned is that a little discomfort can be a good thing and can be rewarded with real soul-satisfying experiences if you choose the right pals to jump into those dark waters with.
The process brought us all closer, to realize that the more things change, the more things stay the same. Especially in terms of common dreams and drive. Searching for the baby ospreys on the Lewes Rehoboth Canal from the SS Dogfish nearing midnight on a June night with a glow stick and a few 90 Minute IPAs will have that affect.
I hope you can taste the love (of this wonderful opportunity we have to create new flavors in the name of brewing) and respect (in terms of the allied minds and hearts doing the creative heavy lifting) in this collaboration. Cheers to all us who can appreciate such gifts.

Bill Covaleski
Head Brewer and Co-Founder
Victory Brewing Co.

4 Responses to Victory Releases The Most Recent Version of Saison du Buff – or – How I Discovered The Joy of Discomfort

  1. Andrew S. August 24, 2010 at 9:38 PM #

    This beer made me think of the ultimate roast chicken as well, as demonstrated here (although shown partially, Thanks BBC) by Fat Duck Chef/Owner Heston Blumenthal. Using free range high quality chicken.

  2. Justin Hower September 2, 2010 at 6:40 PM #

    So I guess I'm dull. Are there three versions brewed in each brewery or only 3 labels? And if the former, how might they differ? Yes I'm sure they're all equally awesome, off-center, etc., but……………..

  3. keithmaicach March 31, 2012 at 9:14 AM #

    They are the same beer, just brewed at each brewery by same three brewers. So to answer that question, different labels

    • justin hower August 3, 2014 at 2:13 PM #

      Well, different water as well.

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European Tradition.


American Ingenuity.

The Victory Brewing Story

The story of Victory Brewing Company starts on a school bus in 1973 when fifth-graders Ron Barchet and Bill Covaleski stepped aboard, on their way to a new school. The two became fast friends and remained so, even as they grew up and went to college on opposite coasts. Just months out of college, Bill’s appreciation of good beer and access to his father’s home brewing equipment inspired him to explore the hobby. That same year (1985), Bill gave Ron a home brewing kit as a Christmas gift. With that, both Bill and Ron developed their love of the craft…
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