Tag Archives: strong pale ale

Mikkeller It’s Alive!

Brewery: Mikkeller ApS
Country: Denmark
ABV: 8%
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Other Notes: Brewed and bottled by Mikkeller at De Proef Brouwerij, Belgium. Malts – Pale and Cara. Hops – Hallertauer and Styrian Goldings

Brewer Description: (from Mikkeller webshop) It’s Alive! is Mikkellers answer and tribute to the trappist beer Orval. It’s Alive is an easy-to-drink beer, with a lot of hops. The color is amber, the foam is high, white and dense. The potent Brettanomyces culture makes It’s Alive continue to develop in the bottle.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.44
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.3

Intro: A 750ml bottle with a best before date of 31st July 2018. I’m thinking that this has been aged for about 5 years. Poured into a Lost Abbey teku glass.
Appearance: A clear copper amber colour with a big three finger off white head that had pretty good retention and left lots of lacing.
Aroma: Sweetish caramel, brett funk, candied fruit, green apple.
Taste: Light caramel malt sweetness, grass, earthy, brett, funk and apple. Flavours felt a little weak at times though.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with soft to moderate carbonation.
Overall: Quite nice, but I’m not sure why at times, the flavours felt quite weak and just kind of disappeared. Not quite the Orval that it’s tributed to be.

Advertisements

Stone 20th Anniversary Encore Series: 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale

Brewery: Stone Brewing Co.
Country: USA
ABV: 7.5%
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Other Notes: 2016 rerelease. 40 IBUs. Hops – Centennial. Special ingredients – Sweet orange peel, Curaçao orange peel, coriander & black pepper

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Stone 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale is quite easily the rarest and most highly sought-after beer we have ever brewed – with winning bids at one time surpassing $1,200 on eBay. It was so rare that even at the time of its release our own team could barely get their hands on the first bottle of this millennium-inspired, sequentially released series. We produced just 300 cases and one of our delivery drivers at the time dropped and broke one (if calc’d @ $1,200/bottle, that was a $14,400 case!). This bumped-up, Stone-ized version of a Belgian witbier was our first Belgian-inspired beer. Featuring orange peel, wheat, coriander and black pepper, it was our first beer brewed with ingredients beyond the four beer-making essentials of malt, hops, water & yeast. The first time in which co-founder and original Brewmaster Steve Wagner gave former Head Brewer Lee Chase free rein. And, to really pile on the firsts, it was the first time a brewery created a series of different beers designed to be enjoyed together in an epic eleven-part vertical tasting so far into the future (10 years, to be exact…originally sometime after 12.12.12). The cache was more than just in the numbers. Boasting impressive high notes of citrus, spicy hops and honey-like character, Stone 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale was a bright, if less-than-obvious, way to begin this eleven-movement symphony of flavor. Today, while it’s impossible for all but the most uber collector to experience the original, those who desire can once again taste what was the start of something truly epic.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.89
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.8

Intro: A 22 fl. oz. bomber, bottled on 22nd July 2016. Poured into a Holy Mountain tulip glass.
Appearance: A clear golden colour with a big three finger white head that had decent retention and left lots of nice sticky lacing.
Aroma: Orange peel, clove, banana, coriander, orange creamsicle, Belgian yeast, with some light funk.
Taste: Orange creamsicle, orange peel, clove, banana, coriander, Belgian yeast and a light but spicy pepper finish.
Mouthfeel: Dry, medium bodied with moderate carbonation.
Overall: I enjoyed the first glass and could see how it was ground breaking in 2002, but despite this, a whole bomber by myself might just have been a bit too much.

AleSmith Decadence 2015

Brewery: AleSmith Brewing Company
Country: USA
ABV: 10%
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Other Notes: Belgian-style Amber

Brewer Description: (from bottle) AleSmith Decadence Anniversary Ale was originally brewed in 2005 to celebrate our first decade in business. Each year since, our brewers have commemorated our anniversary with a special beer of a new style. Now, ten years after brewing our first beer of the Decadence Series, we’re proud to present another hand-forged addition, AleSmith Decadence 2015. In the spirit of traditional Belgian brewing we’ve departed from style-constraints to bring you a fresh take on the popular European style, the Belgian Amber. This big, complex, amber-hued ale was brewed with a substantial amount of Belgian and European malts that complement the spiciness imparted by Belgian Abbey yeast. The result is a perfect balance between rich, toasty maltiness, Belgian candi sugar and the light floral profile of European hops. Enjoy this hearty Belgian inspired brew now or age at a cool temperature to increase it’s complexities.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.81
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.6

Intro: A 1 pint 9.4 fl oz foiled bottle with no clear bottled on or best before date. Poured into a Lost Abbey teku glass.
Appearance: A hazy amber colour with a one finger off white head with an orange tinge that dissipated fairly quickly while leaving some spotty lacing.
Aroma: Malty, candi sugar, caramel, brown sugar and toffee, with a hint of clove, banana and apple juice.
Taste: Toasted, lightly sweet, caramel with hints of clove, banana, alcohol and apple juice.
Mouthfeel: Creamy, medium bodied with moderate carbonation.
Overall: Quite nice and easy to drink.

Sierra Nevada Ovila Abbey Golden – Pomegranate

Brewery: Sierra Nevada Brewing Company
Country: USA
ABV: 8.5%
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Other Notes: Specialty Ovila series brewed in collaboration with the monks of the Abbey of New Clairvaux in Vina, CA.

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Pomegranates have been treasured since ancient times and used as symbols of fruitfulness and prosperity. In the modern era, they are prized for their unique sweet-tart flavor and intense red color, which acts as a perfect counterpoint for the spicy Belgian-style golden ale. This collaboration beer features pomegranates grown at the Abbey of New Clairvaux.

My rating: 4
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.86
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.7

Intro: A 12.7 fl oz corked and caged bottle packaged on 9th September 2015 and poured into a Duvel tulip glass.
Appearance: It poured a hazy but bright copper colour with a one finger slightly off white head that dissipated fairly quickly but left nice lacing.
Aroma: Belgian yeast, banana, honey and fruity cherry tartness.
Taste: Sweet Belgian yeastiness, ripe banana and apple followed by some fruit tartness and only light pomegranate. Hint of pepper on the finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with light to medium carbonation.
Overall: This was the fourth of the Ovila series that I’ve tried and the best one so far. I think it would have been even better if I could taste more pomegranates though.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

sierra nevada belgian style abbey golden pomegranate 4

De Struise Tsjeeses Reserva Port Barrel Aged

Brewery: De Struise Brouwers
Country: Belgium
ABV: 10%
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Other Notes: 2013 Vintage

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Belgian X-Mas Ale.

My rating: 4
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.32
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.2

Intro: A 330ml bottle of 2013 vintage, bottled on July 2014 with a best before date of 15th August 2019 and poured into a Duvel tulip glass.
Appearance: It poured a cloudy dark orange bronze colour with a fluffy two finger light tanned head with good retention that leaves nice spotty lacing.
Aroma: Sweet and fruity plum, apple, grape, fig and red wine with hints of caramel and vanilla.
Taste: Sweet apples, orange, port, grapes with oak woody notes and caramel malts.
Mouthfeel: Very rich, medium bodied with medium but strong prickly carbonation.
Overall: I wish I had the original non barrel aged version of this to compare to. However, this Port BA version is very good. Even at 10% the alcohol is well hidden and being Port BA I was a bit worried that it would be too sweet but its actually at a good level. A great barrel aged Belgian Strong Pale Ale that I would get again next year!

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

struise tsjeeses reserva port barrel aged 4