Saaz is a classic spicy hop that's been used for many years to add aroma and flavour to Pilsner lagers.
It has an earthy, herbal, barky-spice taste which is delicate but insistent.
Used in a saison it can help build earthy flavours into the beer. When I say earthy, I mean fresh and woody, rather than soil.
To test a bag of Saaz hops I brewed a single malt batch of pale ale. I found that the bark-like flavours really worked well with the malt and produced a well rounded, simple but flavourful bitter.
Saaz is a noble hop which means it has low bitterness and high aroma. That said, in the sample batch of pale ale, the flavours were much more pronounced than the smell.
Alpha Acid Units3.5 - 5
Possible Hop Substitutions