Podcast Episode 317: Averie Swanson of Keeping Together is Envisioning Our Saison Future

The former head brewer of Jester King set out on her own path with her Keeping Together brand, brewed out of Half Acre in Chicago. Now, she's writing the next chapter of the story in the high desert of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Jamie Bogner Aug 19, 2023 - 6 min read

Podcast Episode 317: Averie Swanson of Keeping Together is Envisioning Our Saison Future Primary Image

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If Averie Swanson had her way, saison would outsell IPA among craft beer aficionados. The longtime saison brewer hopes to move beyond stereotypes and romanticized history and show—through beautifully designed and constructed beers—that saison provides a broad palette for brewers to explore flavor. With her Keeping Together brand, now based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, she hopes to write a new chapter for saison brewed in the United States.

In this episode, she tackles both the theoretical and the practical, discussing:

  • building characterful grain bases for saison with everything from smoked malt to oats
  • designing within constraints
  • downplaying Brettanomyces in mixed-culture fermentation
  • isolating Saccharomyces and rebuilding a culture around it
  • testing how new ingredients work in saison
  • using acidity as an element of structure

And more.

This episode is brought to you by:

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Jamie Bogner is the Cofounder and Editorial Director of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®. Email him at [email protected].