Out of the can, needed to be poured hard to raise a fluffy off white head on the beer which dissipated rather quickly. Fruity esters off the top with spice and yeast. Pleasant and not overwhelming at all. Peppery notes in the taste with a clean, almost acidic bit is the part of this beer I like best. Like many Surly beers, this has assertive characteristics for the style but it comes into balance in the end. The gold flecked amber color of the beer promises a bit more backbone; however, it always seems a little light in the mouth. Today, it's a hot summer day, so it's refreshing. Often, I think it's a bit thin for the taste.
Overall, a very nice saison-ish beer that I continue to buy on occasion. Earlier review seemed a little harsh, especially since I seem to return to it more and more. Of the Surly beers, CynicAle is one worth repeating and getting a four pack several times a year. A great go-to beer or one to share at a party. Not as brash as Furious or Surly brews, but a very solid beer that has its place in my fridge.
Initial review on BeerAdvocate:
Presentation: can poured into a pint glass from Dennis Brothers Liquors
A: Cloudy amber ale with a white head that fell quickly.
S: spicy, peppery, and has a kick to it.
T: continued spice, light fruits, alcohol there but not overwhelming, and has a sharp bite to it.
M: light and airy, but not thin.
D: easy and gone to fast.
Overall: a good beer, but maybe not to style for a saison—saison on roids would be closer, but that's the direction of Surly. Not my favorite of the Surly beers but an excellent beer nonetheless.