Brewed by Nøgne Ø (Hansa Borg)
Style: Spice/Herb/Vegetable
Grimstad, Norway


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 543   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 255   ABV: 8.5%
This is the second release of Special Holiday Ale, which was first brewed in San Diego in 2008. Each brew is following the same recipe, including Michigan chestnuts, white sage from southern California and Norwegian juniper berries, but differences in brewing and aging practices produce different beers. Cheers to being different! Skål!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
reggiedunlop (3625) - The dub c, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 25, 2010
pours a very dark brown with ruby hues...nearly black...opaque...with a thick tan head...very nice lacing and retention. aroma is spicy...nutmeg, cinnamon?...also a bit like a spicy cologne...sage evident with some spruce, subtle sweet vanilla, nutty, hint of citrus...warming. flavor is sweet at first followed by spice and roastiness...hint of chocolate and chestnuts come through a bit. finish is earthy and spicey/sprucey...lingers. motufeel is thick and lively...silky. thoroughly enjoyed this one!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
blklab2007 (2117) - Connecticut, USA - JUL 22, 2010
bottle found in the clearance rack. pour is a dark earthy brown with a thick one finger head. aroma has sage, spice, juniper, nuts, and some sweetness. mouth feel is medium and has plenty of carbonation. flavor is really heavy on the sage(almost too much so), spices, juniper, sweetness, and a hit of rye bitterness.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 11/20
tokyogoat (1503) - San Diego, California, USA - JUL 16, 2010
Not a great beer at all, not terrible, I wouldnt buy it again. I was expecting substantially more. this one had a weird metallic taste that the previous incarnation did not have. it was really bad.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
drpimento (2865) - La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA - JUL 13, 2010
Super dece beer. Poured with a tan, fine foamy, head and a little lace. Color is an almost opaque, mahoganey brown. Aroma is malty, spicey, dark ripe fruits. Flavor is like aroma but the spices come out more - can definitely pick out the sage and juniper; chestnuts are muted. Body and carbonation are perfect for the style: round full, fine aggresive but not overdone bubbles. Finish is like flavor, very well balance and short to medium long. Easy drinking beer. Could have another. Be real good with hearty meals.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
yngwie (16227) - Kristiansand, NORWAY - JUL 11, 2010
Bottle. It looks quite lovely in the glass, it’s almost clear, chestnut-colored, and a finger-thcik, creamy, beige head sits patiently on top, leaving some lacings as the glass empties. The aroma has a nice anise-like start, guess it’s the sage playing. A juniper-like touch also chimes in, along with roasted malts, dired fruits, caramel and little touch of molasses or some other dark sugar. It’s full-bodied and almost sticky sweet, but with enough alcohol and bitterness to cope with it. At least as a beer for the darker, colder months. There’s licorice and juniper berries too in the flavor, and a fine bitterness to finish it. Loved drinking this one last Christmas, so much I obviously forgot rating it, and was delighted to hear it will return this year. 100711

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
hellbilly (3249) - scottsdale über alles, Arizona, USA - JUL 8, 2010
picked this up on the discount rack at sun devil. 3/13/2010 opaque. reddish orange dark brown with a soft strangely colored orange head. lots of spotty lacing. very herbaceous and spicy nose... brown sugar, ginger, roasty grain, sweet pine/juniper and earth also show up. chocolate finds its way into the flavor profile... along with black bread, molasses, orange peel, ginger, some skunky noble hops, brown sugar and a lightly bitter finish. it is a bit messy with a bunch of different components but it seems to work... much like fruit cake does. it’s medium-full bodied, rich and creamy yet crisp and highly drinkable. 7/4/7/4/16/3.8

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
MarinaMarket (252) - POULSBO, Washington, USA - JUL 6, 2010
UPDATED: JUL 11, 2010 piney, juniper, spicey aroma...caraway & flowery? Wow, couldn’t be a more complex aroma. I am still pondering it. Dark and a bit bready chocolate like Old Rasputin. Wow...very rich bodied palate. Sweet and spice taste, and smoooooth as can be. Lively yet not carbonic, and creaminess? How the hell did they make this beer? Tasted from the bottle @ 60°F.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
dimenhetfield (2486) - , Florida, USA - JUL 4, 2010
Christmas in July, gotta love it. After looking over my notes for this one I had a one word deScription for it, SPICE!! It was definitely one of the tastier/spicier beers that I tried that night. The color was dark with a white foam head that quickly disappeared. I could really pull the roasted flavors out of this one.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
thedm (5355) - Fort Wayne, USA - JUL 4, 2010
This bottled brew from a rating party poured a medium sized head of foamy finely sized dark brown colored bubbles that were mostly diminishing and left behind a very hazy dark brown colored body. The mild aroma was spicy malty and sage. The mouth feel was tingly at the start and at the finish with a acidic aftertaste. The strong flavor contained notes of sour and spices. An OK brew just nothing special.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
robertjm (837) - Albany, California, USA - JUN 14, 2010
Pours huge orangy-tan head. Huge amounts of bubbles coating inside of glass. Aroma is not the normal beer. Perhaps the Sage? Flavor is blended very well. Hints of the juniper don’t clash with the malts. Rye not as huge as lots of other rye beers. Almost like a sweet peach. Sort of a perfumy aftertaste. Slightly thicker than average body. Very nice. Too bad it’s soooooo expensive $10/500ml btl!!

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