Bommen & Granaten - Brouwerij De Molen
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Ratings: 134 | Reviews: 73 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by kojevergas:
3.38/5 rDev -12%
11.2 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Guinness pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. "Enjoy within 25 years" - pretentious bastards. Recommended serving temperature 15 C. Expectations are above average, yet I fear it will be over-hopped like many English Barleywines. Brewed and bottled August 24th, 2011.
Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm considerably over the course of consumption. Side-poured with extra vigor as carbonation issues are absolutely anticipated (I've had some bad De Molen experiences in the past).
A: As predicted, it pours absolutely no head whatsoever - even with a vigorous as hell pour. A beige white floater is present about the edges, adding little in the way of appearance. That's what you get when De Molen tackles a 15.20% beer. Colour is a dark rusty caramel-copper. Nontransparent. Non-opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.
Sm: Wonderful malts - among them biscuit and seemingly well-balanced dark and bright malts. Wonderful caramelization, evoking the wort-like aroma of an ongoing brew. Some booze comes through, but quite little for the ABV. Shockingly, the hops seem complementary to the style and flavour profile, not intruding upon it like so many bad beers in the style. A moderate strength aroma. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Has De Molen actually pulled off a good English Barleywine?
T: Quite sugary. Yes, sugar, sugar, more sugar, and a hint of molasses - all over a heavy dose of caramelization. Quite sweet; I assume this is to drown out the ABV - which it does most admirably. It resembles port, but lacks sufficient depth of fruit character to make the resemblance favorable. I do like the fig, but it's in dire need of more. Plums or raisins would do nicely to complement the flavours here, but sadly are not present. In any case, it's a sugar bomb. Hops are vague and indistinct, but stay on the fringe, never entering the body enough to add any real flavour - not that they could with all the sugary malt bomb action. It's damned overwhelming. No yeast comes through, nor does any alcohol - which is a damn fine accomplishment at 15.20%.
It's just a shame there's so little flavour here. No depth, complexity, or subtlety at all. It feels like a homebrew experiment in concealing alcohol. Sure, the yeast ate all the malt, but where do we go from here?
I will say that the alcohol yields a warming sensation in the stomach. I consider this a plus. Moreover, the one note that does stick out is a hint of toffee, which is relatively easy to find and comes in spades on the climax. It lacks dimension, but it's there.
I like it in a general sense, but it's far from great. I'm just glad it's not overhopped.
Mf: Thick as hell from the sugar bomb, resembling the milk leftover in a cereal bowl after an infant gets done with his chocolatey sugar bombs. Understandable, but far from ideal. It's smooth and wet. Syrupy. Undercarbonated - a seeming De Molen common trait. Doesn't feel tailored to the flavour profile, but sure it suits it in a general sense. The mouthfeel does what it can to ensure this 15.20% brew slides down easily enough, and I respect that.
Dr: It's drinkable as all hell for the ABV, but where is the craftsmanship? I could easily get pissed on this brew; in fact I'd go so far as to say it's dangerous. But there's so little on the table here. I wouldn't even want to buy it just to age it; what is there here that would mature over time? It's a fair offering from De Molen, but it's held back considerably by its simplicity. I'm glad they avoided the usual pitfalls of the style, but this is far from a great example of the style. Decently priced for what it is. I've given it a high rating in this category because it truly is a masterclass in hiding ABV.
*I originally gave this one a C+, but it gets considerably better as it warms, letting the fig notes come out. I adjusted my score to a B-.
07-08-2012 05:06:10 | More by kojevergas
More User Reviews:
4.45/5 rDev +15.9%
2009 vintage. Brewing date: 2009-02-25.
A: Reddish amber, quite pale actually. No head, just a few random airy bubbles that quickly disappear. Looks like I'll be having another flat one from De Molen...
S: A very powerful and well defined smell. Lots of vinous fruits (prunes, plums, raisins) and caramel malts. The alcohol adds a nice and subtle layer. Faint notes of autumn leaves and spices.
T: The taste is really good. It's very sweet with caramel malts to the fore. Notes of toffee. Vinous fruits are all around, mostly in the form of plums and figs. Aromas of oranges and apples. Lots of rum soaked raisins. Strangely enough, the sweetness doesn't get too much, instead the beer comes out as quite balanced. The finish is gently bitter and sweet with vanilla, wood and a mild leafy hop note, and a warming, well integrated alcohol flavor.
M: Full bodied with a fat and chewy mouthfeel. No carbonation, absolutely flat.
D: A really good beer. Very taste and characterful. It's definitely a sipper, but it's impressive that a beer as sweet as this one is so balanced. The vinous and liqueur-like qualities in this one is superb. But it would have been so nice if there was some carbonation.
09-17-2009 22:04:32 | More by ricke
3.8/5 rDev -1%
Pours a hazy chestnut brown color with a wispy light tan head. The head quickly dissipates leaving no lacing but decent legs.
Smells of sweet and syrupy caramel malts with good amounts of dark toffee. Also present are large amounts of ripe plums and figs and milder amounts of brandy aromas.
Tastes similar to how it smells. Sticky caramel malt flavors with large amounts of toffee and butterscotch flavors kick things off. Shortly thereafter moderate amounts of brandy-soaked plum and raisin flavors work their way into things, carrying through to a decidedly sweet ending.
Mouthfeel is good. It's got a smooth thickness with very soft carbonation.
Drinkability is OK. I finished my glass without a problem however I'm not sure about another.
Overall this was a big still barleywine - certainly on the sweet side but after a certain ABV it's almost impossible to make them otherwise. I'd enjoy seeing beers over 12% available in the Rogue nip bottles as 12 oz. is almost always too much. Anyways, it's a tasty beer that's worth a shot.
08-04-2010 00:18:15 | More by glid02
3.98/5 rDev +3.6%
Sampled on tap at the Pre-ZBF festival at Alivnne. The beer poured a cloudy orange body with an off white head that ran away rather quickly. The nose had yeast notes, some citrus character and a bit of alcohol as well. The taste was pretty intense with some alcohol notes, fruit character, orange and a nice hop character and spice as well. Overall a full bodied beer that improved as it warms and the nose and body open up.
03-08-2009 21:23:10 | More by ggaughan
3.78/5 rDev -1.6%
Traded from the Netherlands. Pours a rich dark brown colour with a little head, noneby the end of the bottle. Fairly full mouthfeel, supplemented by lots of caramel. This is sweet and apricot fruity. Very sweet, this is one year old of its stated 25 year life, and should be even more interesting after five years. Drinkable and super high alcohol is hidden.
11-01-2009 00:17:25 | More by Sammy
3.65/5 rDev -4.9%
Pours a murky brown. No head, no lacings, just a few bubbles off the pour that vanish immediately.
Fruit and chocolate on the nose. Dark red fruit, carmelised sugar, and milk chocolate.
Nice dark fruit, berries, plums, and dates. Deep malt profile, really complex. Alcohol is soft and well-incorporated.
The mouth let's it down. Just not pleasant to drink. No carbonation whatsoever. A real shame, because the flavour profile is really nice.
12-17-2012 23:25:14 | More by CanuckRover
3.98/5 rDev +3.6%
33cl bottle, brought back from Holland.
bottled 8/27/09 - best consumed within 25 years
appearance: standard black typewriter font on white label, eroded red wax over the cap. the cap pops to absolutely no sound and is poured into my delirium chalice. clear amber mahogany turns to a cloud as the sediment sneaks in. no head, a few misplaced bubbles that instantly vanish
smell: caramel, tobacco, molasses, pine sap, rum covered fruit
taste: 15.2% is buried somewhere - quite sweet but lacking any real bitterness - caramel, rum soaked apple and plum, brown sugar, citrus peel. fascinating how well the alcohol hides (at least on the palate) - otherwise, not particularly exciting but a fun ride
mouthfeel: no carbonation, medium body, slightly syrupy
overall: not de molen's finest work, but a dangerously drinkable abv monster
06-14-2011 02:58:26 | More by dirtylou
3.83/5 rDev -0.3%
Poured into a snifter. Dark ruby color with a very thin white-ish head that fades almost instantly. No lacing. All in all, not an impressive appearance - but I'll give it a pass, considering the huge ABV.
Nose is a malty treat - caramel, burnt brown sugar, etc. Taste follows suit perfectly, with a generous sweetness - loads of caramel, brown sugar and lots of malt. Body is medium to heavy and very stick. My major criticism of this brew is the carbonation - there's virtually no carbonation in this thing, and it leaves the beer a bit flat (no pun intended). Don't get me wrong - I'm not asking for a tingler here, but this thing could use some more carbonation to give it a bit of life. The alcohol burn is certainly there, but it's not offensive - it adds some great character.
All in all, an interesting brew. It's a phenomenal sipper, but not a personal favorite of mine. Something needs to be done about that mouthfeel before I give this one another look - just too flat.
08-07-2010 01:07:11 | More by Mavajo
2.45/5 rDev -36.2%
Shared this with Frasier433 during our weekly tasting session. He picked it up at Hop City.
A- Murky mahogany. Zero carbonation. No lacing. I served this to 3 people, 2 pours each. On the very last pour (so pour number 6) I really made it forceful and go just a hint of co2. I'm not looking for a lot, but something. The stillness of this beer really made it seem flat, dull, and unappetizing. Looks like a 40 year port, that oxidized reddish-brown color.
S- The smell was pretty incredible. Obvious nuts and malts. There was a flavor I was trying to define, and I said "Apricots...no, plums...no, apricots AND plums" and then Frasier said "Nah dude, figs". Yes, figs...figs all the way. It smells like a fine aged port. Smells like a 40 year old port.
T- Really sweet, overly sweet, toffee and grape juice, but bitter on the end. A drying flavorless bitter. Actually pretty unpleasant.
M- Medium-full bodied, thick and rolling. Moist.
D- The appearance was acceptable, the smell was incredible, but the taste was just really hard. We had three people drinking a 33 cL bottle, and it was hard for us to finish. Frasier picked up 2 bottles. I said, age the second one for 10 years and let's come back to it, see if the sugars mellow out.
Overall, the smell was really incredible, but the taste was just down right unpalatable.
08-08-2010 16:59:56 | More by jmhart
3.53/5 rDev -8.1%
(330cl bottle from Bruery Provisions. Bottle #2013/2304). Pours cloudy mahogany with no head and some floaties. Aroma has loads of fruit--green apple, orange, some caramel and a bit of alcohol. Taste is sweet with a bit of bitterness on the end. Alcohol is noticeable, but it doesn’t show 15%. Not bad, but not terribly complex.
05-25-2011 05:53:21 | More by trappistlover
3.53/5 rDev -8.1%
750ml bottle from the May '08 brewing. The cork comes loose silently, and pouring it proves there is indeed very little carbonation, if any. The beer is surprisingly clear, with a bright copper body and some traces of a would-be foam collar. Looks like a liqueur, and the similarities don't stop there. Smells incredibly sweet, with brown sugar and fruit notes. Lots of orange character. Very boozy; taking a big whiff, it burns the nostrils. Caramel, brown sugar, and honey in the taste, again with a good deal of fruit. There is a surprising amount of bitterness there, though it's easily overpowered by the sweet finish. No real alcohol bite, just a very warming finish. Thick feel that is quite syrupy. Normally not the kind of beer that I really go for, but I think the lack of carbonation is really what lets it work. Rather than thinking about this as a beer, it comes off as being much more akin to a typical dessert liqueur. Definitely a sipper, and not something I want to have more than a 6oz serving of, but then again, one can just recork the bottle and not have to worry about losing carbonation. Really interesting for what it is.
08-13-2009 02:33:43 | More by philipquarles
3.6/5 rDev -6.3%
Just dropped $10 on this 12oz bottle, and I must say, I've had better. In so, so many ways.
Puppy farts are the worst, yet, they come out of the cutest things on Earth, so you can hardly be mad at them. Puppies wag their tail at you as if they didn't just put the taste of poop in your mouth, but they know. Trust me, they know. Even after you are tasting the fecal matter, at least the puppy isn't taking $10 from you. At least not directly, more in the form of food and bills at the veterinarian.
Although consequences matter, so do intentions. And all this puppy wanted me to do was love it for who it is: a peeing, pooping on the floor, shit for brains son of a bitch. I can appreciate that. It just wanted some love. Not everybody is able to poop in the correct place, even after they get the shit beat out of them repeatedly. They're "forgetful". Forgetful in the same way that men forget to put down the toilet seat or women forget to stop complaining all the time.
But let's talk about this beers intentions. It is a high alcohol English Barley Wine packaged in a sexy looking bottle. So sexy, in fact, that I decided to give my money to the clerk in exchange for this bottle. I'm a sucker for cool typography. The wax dip just tops her off.
It means well, it really does. It has a complex palate of caramel and mixed fruits, but the mouthfeel is something that I just can't get on board with.
Appearance: Pours a caramel color with a hint of ruby red. Zero carbonation
Smell: Smells of alcohol, apricots, caramel and maybe some figs. Difficult to tell at this point, I'm almost done drinking it and the alcohol is starting to get to me
Taste: Too sweet. I taste assorted fruits, but more of a candied version of them. Very sweet. Too sweet for me, no bitterness at all
Mouthfeel: Aunt Jemima just pooped in my mouth
Overall: Not bad, but not $10 good. I much prefer the Heaven and Hell which is also by Brouwerij De Molen, but costs $1 less. Won't be purchasing again, far too sweet for me
06-20-2011 06:09:09 | More by xaulzan
1.93/5 rDev -49.7%
Bottle: Poured a transparent amber color ale with zero head. Aroma of dry fruits, oxidation and sweet corn notes is quite intense. Taste is also dominated by warm alcohol ester notes with some corn, some oxidized caramel malt notes with intense dry fruit and loads of residual sugar. Body has an oily like texture with zero carbonation and loads of alcohol was apparent. This was bottle in 2010 and is supposedly good for another 25 years! I can’t say I was very impressed with this beer as way too much alcohol and sugar was perceptible. There seems to be a trend of zero carbonation and high-gravity beer with no attenuation and I just don’t get it.
10-19-2012 19:41:39 | More by Phyl21ca
2.4/5 rDev -37.5%
Appearance: Murky brown tinged with orange. No head or carbonation to speak of. Big alcohol legs but not as sticky as I'd expect at 15.2 % ABV.
Smell: Brown sugar, caramel, apples, slight smell of booze. Then it all fades quickly.
Taste: A little harshness from the booze, sweet sugary apple flavor but kind of watered down. Some caramel. Very one dimensional.
Mouthfeel: On the light side of full or maybe even medium. Disappointing for a beer of this style especially one that is such high gravity.
Overall: Very disappointed in this beer. Not worth trying especially at the price point. It's a very simple brew but the few notes it does have are not particularly enjoyable and the body comes off thin for what should be a huge barley wine.
05-26-2013 03:36:26 | More by Brandywine
3.45/5 rDev -10.2%
De Molen's Bombs 'n Grenades (funny dutch comic reference), over 15% abv. Nugget hop.
I'm slightly worried.
Brewed 19 januari 2011.
Bottled 11 march 2011.
So it's a pretty fresh sample.
Red brown, with a thin head. Hardly any carbonation.
Smell is boozy, with quite a heavy scent of earthy hops. some floral and herbal.
Taste is more sweet than expected, but the alcohol dominates this brew nevertheless. It is combined with the heavy bitterness and malt sweet. It's wild and unbalanced.
Aftertaste is of alcohol and bitter hops.
Overall, I think this is far too boozy.
05-14-2011 12:13:27 | More by RuudJH
4.33/5 rDev +12.8%
appearance: Hazy, dusky reddish tan. Slight head and lacing but pretty damn full for a 15%er.
smell: Some fruitiness and malt. Very tame for such a beast.
taste: This is nice. Mellow and full. A hint of something like raspberry. Complex but tame.
overall: Thanks to my buddy for a fantastic birthday present that included this. A very unique and wonderful concoction.
07-02-2011 01:28:19 | More by cindyjeffsmith
Bommen & Granaten from Brouwerij De Molen
86 out of 100 based on 134 ratings.