Midnight Sun Monk’s Mistress (Cabernet)

 
overall
99
98
style
RATINGS: 51   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.86/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 285   ABV: 9.5%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
After spending eight months in a cabernet cask, this Belgian-style ale has developed an aroma of chocolate and port, with flavors hinting of wine, raisins and almonds. Clocking in at 9.5% alcohol by volume, this incredibly complex beer is truly unique and will appeal to beer lovers and wine snobs alike.
2005 Release

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3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Ungstrup (36473) - Citizen of the universe, DENMARK - DEC 7, 2006
A dark brown beer with a yellowish head. The aroma is sweet malty and very roasted, while the flavor is sweet malty and with an acidic note from the hard roasted malt.

4.4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
hopdog (12113) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 19, 2006
22oz bottle acquired in trade with DarkElf (thanks a ton for this one!). Poured a dark brown with a very small sized off white head. Aromas of oak, vanilla, almonds, some dark fruits and port. Vinous tasting with oak, almonds, dark fruits, vanilla and caramel. I really like this one. We opened it up the same night as the Great Lakes BA Blackout Stout and this one was overall better.

4.4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
hopscotch (11005) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - JAN 29, 2006
Bottle... This beer rocks!... Clear, very dark, ruby ale with a small, frothy, khaki head. The aroma is vineous, fruity and earthy. Notes of molasses, chocolate, seasoned oak, dried plum, soy and red wine. The flavor is a nicely balanced medley of dark chocolate and dark, dried fruits, deeply roasted malts, red wine, dry oak and light smoke. Full-bodied and silky with lively carbonation. Finishes smokey, rich and malty. World class effort. Thanks go out to DarkElf for the bottle!

2.6
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
kp (10882) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - SEP 1, 2007
Name: Monks Mistress Dark Strong Ale
Date: 07/16/2006
Mode: Bottle
Source: Tasting

clear dark amber, fine whispy tan head, oaky aroma, big woody flavor, nice bitter finish, the oak dominates the profile, otherwise the malt backbone does not add anything

Aroma: 5/10; Appearance: 6/10; Flavor: 5/10; Palate: 5/10; Overall: 10/20
Rating: 2.6/5.0
Drinkability: 6/10
Score: *4

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
MartinT (9729) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - FEB 27, 2006
Any first impressions?
-A halo of head hovers atop the rubyish dark brown.
-Red meat, port wine in chocolate, and nutty delicacies infuse plenitude through their sweet luxury.
-Wine grapes and chocolate toffee devilishly seduce with their intricate decadence.
-The low carbonation could be activated a little more to make this even more entrancing, and more drinkable.

What if you dig deeper?
-Salted meats, as in prosciutto, skillfully protrude in the aroma soon enough.
-An alcoholic utterance warms up the caramel maltiness and fat grapes.
-These guys’ extraction could hardly be improved upon.
-A buxom, complex sipper for the sweet tooth whose quality and tooth-licking goodness a chocolate artisan would struggle to replicate.

Bottle; 2005 vintage.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
3fourths (9299) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JUL 23, 2006
Dark plum and burgundy colored body. Nose is heavy oak, dry, scorching wood and smoke, with some sand and earthy bark scents floating out of the glass, really great nose on this beer. Flavor is rich and sweet caramel, sour amaretto, sugar, plums, lactic notes even... very strange but not bad. Even has some cheese funk in the finish, but also has some more undesireable spoiled fruit flavors.

4.5
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - JAN 22, 2006
Bottle shared by goldtwins, courtesy of DarkElf, many thanks!: Pours a very dark mahogany with a frothy, nicely-lacing tan head. Very complex, enticing, sweet dark Belgian malty aroma has good oaky cabernet notes with a hint of dates and bready yeast. Body starts with a nice sweet dark toffee maltiness and some Belgian yeast before the full cabernet oaky and dark fruit finish. Very complex, incredibly balanced, sweet and semi-tart body. An amazing beer. I sure hope Midnight Sun brews this again!

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
kramer (6576) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 21, 2006
22 oz bottle, my bottle, shared at 2006 RBSG Grand Tasting. Poured a clear dark brown with a reddish hue and a whispy beige head. Aroma is very sweet with alot of barrel character. Notes of caramel, toffee, raisins, dates, nutty malt, and port. Flavor is lightly tart with lots of oak tannins, sweet malts, syrupy toffee, and dark overripe fruits. Mouthfeel is fairly creamy with moderate carbonation and a slightly sticky finish. Overall, a nice beer, but really didn’t live up to my expectations.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BBB63 (6557) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - SEP 8, 2006
Bottle from Sprinkle and shared with the middle-of-nowhere Ohio crew: Deep purple hue topped by a small ring of small bubbles and no lace. The aroma has notes of wood, bourbon, plum, starfruit, anise, cardamom, light bittersweet chocolate and a lactic sourness.

The initial taste is oaky and oxidized more towards a English Olde Ale than a Belgian. Followed closely with veins of chocolate and caramel malts and dash of candi sugar. Undertones of rich fruit (current and plum) dances about providing both acidity and sourness as well a bubblegum like sweetness. Nicely complex and develops more depth as it warmed. The mouth feel is ashy, tannic and oily.

A nice brew but I found myself wanting the regular non-barreled aged version after I was done. Too bad we did not have one to compare on the spot.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
ClarkVV (6410) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - JAN 22, 2006
UPDATED: AUG 16, 2007 2005 bottle HUGE thankks to OldGrowth for the opportunity. Consumed on 1/22/2006.
Purple-magenta tinges throughout a garnet to mahogany brown. Head is off-white, medium in size, receding quickly to cover but retained there. No lacing. Quite clear, having settled out in the bottle nicely, with plenty of sediment on the bottom. Head is foamy/creamy and bottle conditioned. Smells right away, of intense cabernet notes. Very grape oriented and as it warms and breathes, the oak character emerges and dries it out. The beer characteristics are last to emerge, but once they do, they form a more complete picture. Prunes, raisins, and a touch of alcohol dryness, very elegantly apparent. Rich chocolate and toffee and sweet dates, with a light Belgian yeast apparency, though rather reserved in that aspect. As it warms and breathes further after 20 minutes, the aroma is soft and inviting. Plenty of dry grapes and wood, but yet tons of soft maltiness. Flavor is full of cab grapes turning to dry wood and gaining a yeast dirtiness, unfortunately. More vinous notes and some barley. Light bits of caramel, minor drying alcohol warmth but no alcohol flavor or sharpness. Finally, chocolate, raisins and prunes. Chewy toffee and yeast dryness combine to provide a balanced finish. Never gets very sweet, being very attenuated. Alcohol masterfully hidden. Carbonation is low, bottle conditioned and quite engaging. As with the regular maitresse, the texture is just a bit too lean, IMO. I think it would benefit from some chewier maltiness and a more supple texture. Though, to its credit, it is no where near over the top in sweetness, yeastiness, or alcohol (the barrel character is overdone, though). Quite drinkable on account of the lean body.

Having Cambridge’s wine-barrel aged Blunderbuss has made me rethink my rating, showing me that even young, the wine does not have to be as overpowering as it is here. It really is about 75% of the aroma, perhaps more, whereas the blunderbuss is incredibly subtle, yet still noticeable enough to add a very pleasant aroma and flavor.


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