Saturday, February 6, 2010
Nøgne Ø Winter Ale
Nøgne Ø Winter Ale
aka God Jul
Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
In the US this is called "Winter Ale".
A dark ale brewed specially for the Christmas season, with a rich, complex taste of caramel. This is a strong, dark and rather sweet Christmas Beer – just the way we think a Christmas beer should be.
Recommended serving temperature 12°C/53°F. Great with cheese or nuts. Ingredients: Lager, Munich, caramel, black, and chocolate malt; Chinook, Columbus, and Centennial hops; English ale yeast, and our local Grimstad water.
500ml bottle, ~$9.00
The beer pours a very dark brown almost completely opaque with just a hint of rich ruby hues on the edge of the glass. The beer also has a very rich tan head.
Oh my! What a nose. The most predominate aroma is a wonderful sweet and rich roasted chocolate malt. This is a nice roasted malt aroma not a chocolate additive. There is also a slight hop aroma and a nice sweet malty background aroma. I can’t tell you how inviting this nose it. So let’s dive in.
Wow….Wow, that’s amazing. Sweet roasted malt goodness throughout the taste with a nice almost smoky finish. Really Nice!
Let me try to dissect this a little more.
The taste starts out with sweet roasted malts up front. Mid sip has a nice creamy mouthfeel with a richer roasted malt flavor. Just before the back end you expect these rich malts to get bitter but they don’t. The back end is more malty goodness with some hops finally making their presence known that drives to a nice semi-sweet semi-dry finish. The final aftertaste is a lingering roasted malt sweetness with a great mouthfeel; you whole mouth is just coated with sweet creamy roasted malts. There are also some nice spices along with chocolate and slight coffee notes, mostly chocolate.
The head has completely disappeared along with the lacing.
This is hearty brew. It is very robust for a porter but it maintains a smooth creamy mouthfeel with no malt bitterness. This is not one of those porters that you wonder if it should be a stout. This beer does not have the stout-like bitter or almost burnt roasted malt flavors. The backbone of this beer is unmistakably an English Porter.
I’m a sucker for a good porter and I can tell you hands down This Is A Good Porter.
This beer has warmed to 65 degrees and it has not picked up any unpleasantness at all. I really expected the malts to acquire a more bitter flavor at these temperatures but they stayed smooth and sweet to the end.
This beer stays a porter it keeps that light creamy mouthfeel.
Well, the final grade is an A for this delicious brew. I highly recommend this to anyone that likes a porter and is interested in taking one more step beyond.