Tuesday, 1 May 2012

REVIEW #107: Underlig Jul (Nøgne Ø)

Pours muddy red with an unyielding beige head. A mixture of sweetness and musty spice in the aroma. Wow, this is very much a winter warmer... A strong ginger biscuit note up front with some soapiness and powerful - but not overcooked in my opinion - clove, star anise and Chinese five spice like flavours. The finish is malty and somewhat ashy, as occurs with many good porters and stouts. Medium bodied and a little foamy in the mouth. Pleasant but be aware the spices come across strong.

This is one of Nøgne Ø's famed Christmas Ales's or 'Winter Warmers' along with God Jul (review #42) and Julesnadder. Underlig Jul translates as Peculiar Christmas, a name perhaps reflecting the fact that the beer is brewed with five spices, which are quite heavily applied, making it stand out from the crowd. The brewers took inspiration from the Glog (the Norwegian equivalent of Europe's Gluhwein or our own Mulled Wine). They hint that the beer can be heated and consumed warm. I may get another bottle and see what its like when gently heated in a saucepan; I imagine the spices will become even more prominent. Another beer made for heating is Liefman's Gluhkriek, which is delicious (one fruit beer I wouldn't object to spending money on :p). 
  • MALTS: marris otter; munich; caramel; chocolate
  • IBU: 30
  • ABV: 6.5%

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