highlandlad (1470) - Blue Mountains, AUSTRALIA - DEC 31, 2013
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
If the first beer of the new year is an omen, 2014 is going to be a ripper. This well-travelled Australian-Norwegian collaboration has effectively done a round-the-world trip - from Australia to Norway in a wine barrel and back again by bottle. It’s an atypical quad with a hint of De Dolle (as someone smarter than me points out below. I love the De Dolle range, so we’re off to a flyer.) Lovely appearance: walnut brown with a persistent head. Rich aroma with obvious barrel and red wine notes from the barrel maturation on the trip to Norway. Shiraz barrels would be my guess - definite white pepper on the nose. Also present: blackcurrant, ginger ale and sherbet. The sherbet hints at a sour-sweet character which becomes fully apparent on the tongue. There, the beer reveals itself as an extravagant blend of brown sugars and fruity acids. There are sour cherries, turpentine, shiraz, perhaps even white rum. The body is lush and marshmallow soft. I love beers that take my palate into unexplored territory and this is one of those. Exceptional. (250ml bottle courtesy of Allovate of Perth via Bergstaden of Norway - immense thanks to both for the experience. Batch 866B. BB: 20/12/17)
rlgk (18187) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - DEC 21, 2013
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle from Systembolaget. Cloudy dark amber/brown beer with a nice beige head. Vinous fruity aroma, raisins, figs, yeasty, spicy notes, grapes, some banana notes. Vinous fruity flavor, figs, raisins, warming alcohol, biscuits, caramel, brown sugar, yeasty, some spices. Full bodied, with a sweet vinous finish with warming alcohol.
Gr0ve (2177) - Oslo, NORWAY - DEC 17, 2013
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
250 ml bottle. Very dark brown, but clear. Light beige fine head that clings to the glass. Rounded vinegar aroma. Some wood notes. Round malty flavours with quite a bit of alcohol sweetness. Fine carbonation. Wood flavours. Hints of vanilla, but not much. Burnt and charred wood. Interesting beer with some interesting flavours.
NBird (626) - Perth, West Australia, AUSTRALIA - DEC 13, 2013
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JUN 6, 2015 Now 2 yrs old..
Aurora Australis 2013 btl
Looks.. Dark murky brown, creamy and fluffy latte coloured, medium size head
Smells..berry fruitiness of a red wine oak barrel, some caramel, dark fruit and toffee
Tastes..boozy dark fruits and still lots of bright berry boozin was from the red barrel, lingering berry and roasty caramel.
Aurora Borealis I 2013 btl
Looks.. Thick dark murky metallic brown.. No head.
Smells..caramel, rich dark fruits, toasty malt, oak and whisky/alcohol
Tastes..really rich chewy dark malts and dark caramel, toffee and oak and still got it’s alcohol heat.
Rated in 2013..
Looks.. Very far nutty brown, med head. Smells.. Big red wine barrel and some floral notes. Tastes..nutty and dark ale like, some dark fruits, plums and some real red wine barrel flavours.. Good but just a little sweet.
zenkis (754) - Ogre, LATVIA - DEC 13, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Vinegardy-fruity, sour-sweet flavor. Significant presence of toasted/roasted malt. Bitter is quite average, more from malt than hopping. Very mild texture, not so yeasty on tongue, medium+ to full body. Taste - sour and light sweet. Pours deep brown with huge brown-yellowish rocky top. Mouthfeel is soft astringent, as old, matured one. Tasty.
hawthorne00 (3502) - Melbourne, AUSTRALIA - DEC 5, 2013
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: DEC 10, 2014 Bottle, 14C. From a La Chouffe tulip. Almost black with an inch of beige head that’s never less than a fat coat and leaves spots of lace all over the empty glass. Aroma of plums, cherries, raisins, flowers, leather, brown sugar. First whiff is all wine - like a Mt Avoca shiraz - then malty and sour beery notes emerge. And it is quite sour with a creamy, slightly slippery texture that makes it very nimble for its strength. Vibrant fruity flavours of plums, sweet grapes and sour cherries, creeping bitterness. A bit of a zing in the finish again suggests brett, there’s also tobacco, white pepper and lingering sour cherry. Just a touch of booze there too, though it didn’t seem out of place. Reminds me of De Dolle Oerbier a bit. Not really what I was expecting at all. [4.2]
Didn’t expect to see this again, but it showed up in the Bridge Rd advent calendar. Colder due to warnings of gush - success, it only crept. La Trappe glass this time because it’s a large target. Vinous and leathery with a firm woody bitter finish. Gusher warnings had me expecting sour notes might have taken over, but not at all - there’s a greater intensity of dark fruit that’s now more blackberry and blackcurrant than plum (and therefore makes it more reminiscent of Rochefort 10 rather than Oerbier). Some chocolate too. A more than fair tilt at great.
HopRedHead (397) - Perth, AUSTRALIA - NOV 29, 2013
4.4 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle from Mane Liquor. Pours murky dark mahogany with a creamy 3cm of khaki head. Smells insane - upfront red wine aroma of sour cherries, red grapes, brown sugar and doughy yeast. Taste is upfront malty flavours followed by a sweet, estery Belgian yeast and red wine complexity across the palate. Lingering toffee apple sweetness. Surprisingly worth the tag, must try.
VictorStr (1740) - Helsingborg, SWEDEN - NOV 28, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Underbara aroma. Fruktig/druvig. Hel del sötma. döljer ABVn väldigt bra. Tack sredan.
stefannilssons (1580) - SWEDEN - NOV 28, 2013
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Det här var gott och kraftfullt, smaken bar toner av belgisk jästkultur, syra och malt. Det stod på flaskan att den lagrats på rödvinsfat och det märks väldigt tydligt.
Nische (1884) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - NOV 26, 2013
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
azy red-brown coloured with a huge off-white head. Sweet and fruity aroma of caramel and dried fruits with notes of alcohol. Fruity flavour of caramel and dried fruits with notes of tobacco, red wine and alcohol. Sweet and warming alcoholic finish.