overall
89
67
style
RATINGS: 1112   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.54/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 330   ABV: 11%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
The combination of Cherries, Honey, and Chocolate Malts delivers gentle fruits and subtle spices. Fermented and aged with a unique yeast , this ruby red beer has significant warming strength that underlies the character of this Ale.

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vadavid's rating

2.9
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
vadavid (142) - Fredericksburg, Virginia, USA - DEC 27, 2012
I always keep Mad Elf around for at least a year before I drink it. Fresh, I find the beer a bit "hot" from the high ABV and overly sweet. I am not a fan of fruit in beer and I find Mad Elf to be cloyingly fruity sweet when first released. However, I discovered years back that aging the bottles for at least a year mellows it out. I’ve got some 5 year old bottles still in the cellar. The bottle I reviewed was from the 2009 release and was quite enjoyable. The beer is an attractive deep red color with a thin beige head. The aroma is sweet with dark fruit and a mild earthiness. The flavor of this aged beer is still a bit tart from the cherries, but a hint of sweetness balances that out. The high alcohol content is well-masked. The mouthfeel is thick, leaving behind a sticky coating on the lips.


3.4
ehaak26 (751) - - JAN 13, 2018
Bottle from A.J.'s Beer Warehouse. Aroma of chocolate and cherry. Taste is sweet.

3.3
nperry1128 (4) - - DEC 21, 2017 does not count
Drink a couple of these and you will be good to go. Hints of honey and cherries with some alcohol breathing out. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.1
17Beer (450) - Connecticut, USA - DEC 10, 2017
12 oz bottle. Big alcohol scents with cherry and yeast. It pours a red brown with an off-white head or microbubbles. Big yeast flavors with a kirsch-like alcohol flavor. Not my favorite expression of the style.

4.2
dawgdick (5) - - DEC 10, 2017 does not count
UPDATED: DEC 10, 2017 I highly recommend this beer at Xmas time, for the cherries and honey flava, and the 11% ABV make even the most shrewish mother in law tolerable. But if you drink it back to back with a Belgian Xmas Ale like St B, the presence of its more marginal characteristics rise to salience.

3.8
shawnmurphy (667) - Plattsburgh, New York, USA - DEC 1, 2017
12-ounce bottle pours bright, clear ruby-red with a spritz of tan head and lacing. Aroma: cherries, honey, some barnyard. Flavor: malt-forward (grenadine, honey, cherry cough syrup) with sour cherries, white pepper, allspice, cinnamon, clove, Belgian barnyard yeastiness. Mouthfeel: full-bodied, oily with a warm boozy finish.

3.8
thegreenrooster (4627) - St.louis, Missouri, USA - NOV 11, 2017
Pour is a dark ruby red with a large tan head that goes away quickly. Aroma is a pleasant dark fruit with some bitter bakers chocolate and alcohol. Flavor is dark fruit, brown sugar and sweet molasses. I also get some alcohol heat after the swallow. It's starting to get a bit warm in here. This was a fine winter warmer. Lots of tasty sweet dark fruit like sugar plums. A little alcohol heat is the only thing to get in the way but hopefully after some time on it that will fade.

4.8
orduckms (2) - - NOV 11, 2017 does not count
Love this beer, at 11 percent your not going to find many that taste as good as this does. A little sweet but to be expected. This is what beer is all about! ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.7
GregMooreNH (262) - Bedford, New Hampshire, USA - NOV 8, 2017
Pours dark red amber with a foamy head that quickly dissipates. Aroma is heavy tart cherry with a touch of honey coming through. Taste is instantly tart cherry that works back to honey and nutmeg. Aftertaste is back to cherries with a smooth finish. An excellent holiday ale.

3.7
aaronpetersen (8) - - SEP 2, 2017 does not count
Copper with light white head. Expected more carbonation for a Belgian style. Banana esters and caramel aroma, same for flavour. Mostly banana. Can't detect honey or cherry. Slight warming booze. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

4
katrinaez (2355) - norristown, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 11, 2017
Definitely one of the first and better spiced holiday ale. Deep red color. Nice yeasts, spice, and barley. Thick mouth feel. Lots of residual sugars. Tap... and bottle 3.9 for too strong.


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