dogfishho (669) - Bloomfield, New Jersey, USA - DEC 26, 2012
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Nothing quite like a special bottle of Stille Nacht on Christmas! Pours nearly flat with a cloudy, rusty golden color. After a minute in the glass, a thin head with large bubbles materializes. The aroma is subtle and feels locked up... like it will break out with age. Right now, it is filled with cherries, oak, vinegar, caramel, and some moldy funk... incredible. On the palate, the beer has an almost oily texture that is cut through by the mild carbonation and the acidity of the flavor profile. The flavor is complex as notes of sweet red fruit, wine barrel (shock), lemon mix with others in a fleeting fashion... almost ethereal. Finishes mildly tart, but I’d never call this sour. Killer beer right now and will age with the best of them, for sure.
corby112 (2716) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 16, 2015
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a slightly hazy, burnt golden orange color with a small bubbly head that immediately settles into a thin, lasting ring. Minimal spotty lacing left behind. Looks a bit under carbonated.
Strong tannins in the aroma with lots of oak and vinous fruit but the barrel character is nicely integrated into the base beer. Prominent dry, toasted oak but it doesn’t smell burnt or have much of a toothpick presence. Vinous with strong juicy red wine notes. Barrel character is really nice but doesn’t overpower the notes of the base beer. There’s still some sweet malt, peppery spice, booze and dark fruit esters.
Medium body with slight oxidization but it doesn’t interfere or hinder the flavors. Tight carbonation along with zesty, peppery spices and a really strong barrel presence. Oak and wine dominate flavor but they are still decently integrated into the flavors of the regular version. Really nice dry oak flavor but not charred, overly dry or acrid. Strong vinous red wine flavor that lingers throughout with lots of vinous grape, fig, cherry juice and currant. There’s also some peppery spice and luscious dark fruit from belgian yeast. I’m also picking up some pale malt, bread, cherry, plum and some faint honey. The red wine/barrel notes add great flavor but slightly overpowers what I enjoy about the base beer. The high ABV is excellently masked with subtle heat in the finish but I never would have guessed it was 12%. Really nice, especially if you like Bordeaux/dry reds but this beer isn’t very similar to regular SNR.
SirLimpsalot (3025) - SWEDEN - NOV 3, 2015
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
@ Kulminator 15-10-31: Mycket syrlig doft. Smaken är syrlig och fyllig med tydelig fatton. Riktig gott.
gyllenbock (6294) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - OCT 31, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle at Kulminator. A bit hazy amber with a small head. A nice one with malt, light vinegar, fruit and some yeast. An expensive but tasty one.
bytemesis (5189) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - SEP 10, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle thanks to BrewtopiaofPJ! Pours hazy brilliant orange, small beige head dissipates fairly quickly, decent residual and lacing. Aroma is apple cider vinegar, fruity, peach and orange, hints of brown sugar, oak tannins. Flavor is quite interesting, perhaps a bit oxidized but lots of fruit, oranges and apples, peaches, surprisingly not tart, a light sweetness and a vinous must with oak tannins. Pretty interesting beer. Medium body, prickly carbonation, some heat.
beernbourbon (1426) - Iowa City, Iowa, USA - SEP 7, 2015
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle at Mikkeller bar. Pour Is slightly hazy amber with a small white head. Aroma is bursting with orange and plum. So rich and flavorful. Butterscotch, dried fruit, grape, and orange. Hearty and sweet with a beautiful rich finish. Different than expected but so nice. Warming.
bu11zeye (12367) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - JUL 27, 2015
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(750ml bottle, 2010 vintage) Pours a hazy golden body with a small white head. Aroma of wet musty basement, orange, raisins, and caramel. Flavor of yeast, orange, cherry, raisins, vinous, oak, and vanilla.
Sureshpa (341) - Maastricht, NETHERLANDS - JUL 14, 2015
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JUL 15, 2015 Aroma: Booze, candy apple, wine gums.... Appearance: Orange, gold glow, clear white head, medium lace Taste: Applesyrup, candy apple, boozy light sour finish, like original much better...Sadly.
Alengrin (3679) - BELGIUM - MAY 29, 2015
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Vintage bottle at five years of age, so I expect a lot of maderisation. After carefully removing the soaked cork piece by piece, I discovered a warm orangey amber coloured, initially clear beer with low fizz, becoming more and more ’misty’ as the bottle progresses and forming a still rather thick and broadly lacing, crackling, yellowish white head leaving a firm rim around the edges of the glass as well as thin veil over the liquid. The aroma, powerful but not ’too’ overpowering, is fantastic: a very complex array of sour cherries, blue grapes, orange liqueur, subtle but assertive vanilla tannins and clear wood, toffee and even a touch of white chocolate, unripe walnut and overripe apricot, candied oranges, artisanal honey, strawberries, lime, hints of banana, coriander, ginger, aniseed, cognac and calvados, ’speculoos’ (spiced biscuit), freshly cut red apples and apple cake - and of course the oxidation, but subtly so, as in an aged, medium dry sherry; clearly this belongs to the type of beer which only improves with age including some oxidation. Oxidation has indeed remained very limited here: it is there and adds complexity, for sure, while the overall aroma is still remarkably ’fresh’ in its estery complexity. Wonderful in the mouth as well: a noble barley wine sweetness marks the onset, banana, orange, peach, mango, melon - all in a ’candied’ kind of way; very finely tingling carbonation gives some relief from this bold sweetness and makes for a good balance, along with a certain, sometimes almost lightly lemony acidity which is almost certainly due to the wine barrel ageing. Mouthfeel is smooth and soft, as well as - obviously - very vinous; lovely caramelly malts form a firm basis for the fruity esters and the sourishness, lending them a very ’full’ character. Retronasally, a fair dosis of sweet but ethereal spices enter the play, lot of ginger, perhaps cinnamon, aniseed, and / or coriander, adding an aromatic quality and therefore complexity; finish is long and complex, caramelly malt sweetness of course, upon which a whole structure is built: the lingering, slightly resinous and drying ’winter’ spiciness, vanilla ’oaky’ wood, the increased grape tartness and even sourness with a drying effect, a deep and structural but still lasting, earthy and leafy hoppiness and, as expected, the warming ’flow’ of port- and sherry-like alcohol, not burning anywhere, just being a shadow in the distance, reminding you of the strength of this beer. If there is such a thing as a Belgian-style barley wine apart from the well-known English and American styles, this qualifies as the quintessential example of it, along with other (earlier and later) editions of the same and the different oak-aged Bush varieties by Dubuisson. Slow and gently warming, but rather ’sedating’ sipper for sure, expensive but worth every penny. I have had a sympathy for this brewery for a long time; they were the first in Belgium to offer beers which had been aged in wooden barrels which previously contained other alcoholic beverages. In fact, this one is a mere continuation of Stille Nacht Special Reserva 2000, which became somewhat of a celebrity in its day and age - and righteously so, as this one was indeed the very first in the series. Big cheers to Kris Herteleer.
sir__v (1284) - Lille, FRANCE - APR 12, 2015
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle @ De Dolle, Esen - BE. Color: clear amber beer with no carbonation and really small white foam. Smell: sweet domination, caramel and candied apricot. Taste: small carbonation on mouth, sweet domination, and sugar. Candied fruits domination of candied apricot. Really amazing. Aftertaste: apricot finish and small alcohol finish. Excellent beer! Good job!
DedicatedToFun (4000) - Santa Monica, California, USA - FEB 28, 2015
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle, thanks GT2, brown pour off white head, nose and taste are boozy, sweet. Caramel, cherry, wow