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HaandBryggeriet Hesjeøl

Brewed by HaandBryggeriet (Norway)
Style: Traditional Ale
Drammen, Norway


on tap

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RATINGS: 413   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.56/5   EST. CALORIES: 195   ABV: 6.5%
English: Brewing was very much a part of farm life in old Norway. Indeed farmers were required by law to make beer and could loose their lands if this duty was neglected. Custom called for a specialy hearty but thirst quenching ale at harvest-time. This Hesjeøl- or harvest ale is a recreation of this beer style.

Norsk: Ølbrygging var en viktig del av livet i Norge i gamle dager. Øl ble brygget til de fleste større begivenheter, men også som tørstedrikke til bruk i innhøstingssesongen, da ble det brygget et forfriskende øl. Haandbryggeriet har forsøkt å gjenskape et slikt øl med dette Hesjeølet. Editor’s note: Was 7% ABV, now 6.5%.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
alex_leit (2506) - Minsk, BELARUS - AUG 28, 2016
Bottle. Unclear, dark honey color. Aroma: lightest smoked malt, honey, herbs, spicy. Taste: smoked bacon, malt, mild hops bitterness, wine, unusual, but good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
nicola5555 (12) - - AUG 17, 2016

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
tderoeck (8187) - Gent, BELGIUM - JUL 30, 2016
4/VII/16 - 50cl bottle from Bierhalle Deconinck (Vichte) @ Adam Jackson Tasting Without Adam Jackson - BB: 14/I/17 (2016-728) Thanks to Erwin for sharing the bottle!

Clear orange beer, big creamy off-white head, leaving a nice lacing in the glass. Aroma: malty, soapy, floral, bit fruity, honey, rather sweet. MF: soft carbon, medium to full body. Taste: pretty smoky start, sweet malts, sugary, soft bitterness. Aftertaste: smoky, bitter, malty, grains, hay, meh.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Alengrin (4594) - BELGIUM - JUL 27, 2016
The Scandinavian beer revolution does not neglect its own traditions, and many of these new craft breweries there come up with recreations of ancient Nordic ales regularly. This is one such example, though, as with the stories surrounding saison, I find it hard to imagine that a 6.5% ABV beer (or originally even 7%) would serve as a thirst quencher for landworkers during harvest, as the label claims... Thinnish, bubbly, off-white, regular head leaving a rim around the edge and some thin patches in the middle but eventually dissolving into completely nothing; almost clear amberish orange colour with a suspension of tiny yeast bits throughout, becoming a completely cloudy amber with sediment. Aroma of (mildly) smoked bacon, dried orange peel and bitter orange, freshly grated ginger, dried juniper berries, roasted peanuts, cigarette tobacco, chicken spices, curcuma, toasted bread, roasted bell pepper, clove-like phenols and a lot of them, faint strawberry sweetishness peeping through, horseradish. Fruity onset, dried peach, hints of redcurrant, mandarin and red apple, only very vaguely sweetish, more sourish, mineral accents here and there, softish carbo, supple and lean mouthfeel, spicy phenols showing up shyly at first but growing in strength later on. These impressions continue over a smooth nutty malt middle gaining a soft, toasted bittering edge in the end, while drying spiciness and hoppiness add more substantial bitterness, resulting in a medium long to long bitter finish, peppery and leafy with an earthy yeast quality accentuating it especially after adding the sediment; juniper berry- and vaguely clove-like spicy notes rise up retronasally but fortunately not in an obnoxious way. Label does not mention spices so I assume these effects are from a purely phenolic nature and indeed, it can easily be established that this is a very phenolic beer, albeit not unpleasantly so; it is, however, rather unusual and a bit ’untidy’, with a deep hop bitterness and hop aromas almost reminiscent of the old English style IPA... Feels somewhat unbalanced; perhaps some more rounded malt sweetness could make it better, but then, who am I to judge how an ancient Norwegian thirst quencher should taste like... That being said, there is little or no reference on the label to actual historical sources, so I have a suspicion that this is only ’traditional ale’ by inspiration (and some extent of imagination), and not so much from a truly ’physical’ and technical point of view. Remains the question: is it a pleasant beer? It has a phenolic character which is all too strong for my personal liking and the deep hop bitterness could be better balanced or more elegantly put, but on the other hand, it has certain characteristics which remind me of Orval, and that works to its benefit, I guess, though it does not come close to that standard. It does, however, speak for a Belgian, in some respects saison-like influence, bringing me back to my abovementioned point of this probably being not too authentically Scandinavian at all in terms of style and pedigree. I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Baramba (973) - ITALY - MAY 8, 2016
50 cl bottle. Hazy amber no head. Funk aroma, smoke, saison yeast. Malt flavour, cinnamon notes, smokey, some bitterness

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Ktwse (4095) - Greater London, ENGLAND - APR 30, 2016
Pours cloudy copper with a finger of white head. Aroma of smoke, floral notes, light peat. Taste is sweet and smoky with a peaty finish. Light and smooth body with soft carbonation.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
alteregoo (980) - POLAND - APR 22, 2016
Bardzo obfita, drobna, biała piana, która ochoczo sama wychodzi z butelki jak i ze szkła. Barwa bursztynowo czerwona, mętna, intensywnie uwalniające się drobne bąbelki. W aromacie sporo jabłek, gruszek, winogron i ogólnie białych owoców z siankiem na końcu - baaardzo przyjemnie. Smak półwytrawny, jest lekka kwaskowość porzeczkowa, delikatna słodycz moreli, skórki od chleba i czerwony pieprz na finiszu. O ile aromat bliższy białym, o tyle smak bliższy czerwonym owocom w połączeniu z belgijskim Saisonem. Goryczka niska, przyprawowa. W odczuciu drobniusieńkie, intensywne nagazowanie, posmaki ziołowe, delikatne funky i mineralność.
Bardzo złożone, wielowymiarowe piwo. Od silnej owocowości w aromacie, poprzez niewielką kwaskowość, słodowość, estrowość i fenolowośc w smaku, do zagrodowych, lekko dzikich i ziemistych wtrętów w afterteasie.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
AnG_BrgNor (531) - Bergen, NORWAY - APR 12, 2016
Flaske. Spesiell øl. Aroma og smak er litt røkt, som røkt spekekjøtt eller kaviar. Vanskelig å si, bacon kanskje? Som sagt ganske spesiell. Mange elementer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
harrisoni (17337) - Ashford, Kent, ENGLAND - APR 5, 2016
On tap at The Thomas Tallis Canterbury. Haze amber orange colour lasting ivory head. . Belgian ale? Toffee. Smokey hefe aroma. Its full toffee banana in the mouth some sweetness. Just a very interesting beer. Bizarre. Herb.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
metalspice (687) - Jevnaker, NORWAY - MAR 19, 2016
Uklart karamell brunt med skum som forsvinner fort. Lukten er preget av røyk,torv og lett frukt. Søt røyk og karamell i smaken. Medium munnfølelse.

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