Hemel & Aarde - Brouwerij De Molen
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Ratings: 119 | Reviews: 54 | Display Reviews Only:
United Kingdom (England)
4.26/5 rDev +6.8%
At 10%abv., coming in a slim 330ml brown bottle; bottling date 03/05/2012, served mildly chilled in a long-stemmed wine goblet. Notes: the beer label specifies the ingredients to include water, munich, cara, brown, bruichladdish barley malts, premiant and sladek (late hopping) and yeast.
A: pitch black in colour, coming with a 1cm thick creamy dark khaki frothy head with very good retention, on top of rather mild carbonation.
S: the dense and oily aroma upfront is dominated 50-50 by the peated malts and savoury-sweet black prune-ish notes; given a good swirl, the pronounced peatiness mixes well with bitter cocoa, gristy black beans, vanilla, plummy fruit esters, black cherry skins, and bitter-sweet root herbs as of licorice. Complex, but also strangely the aroma is uplifted by the lovely peaty edge of the malts.
T: smooth in carbonation, the foretaste is slightly metallic, savoury-sweet and robustly peated-malty, delivering lots of smoky and deep-roasted aroma alongside smoked longan-fruits, black prunes, licorice roots and bitter chocolate syrup, followed by a dry tinge of herbal bitterness as well as a thick body of lubricating Munich and brown malts with an aromatic bready touch. The bitterness retains its intensity towards the finish, where the peated-malt and smoked prune-ish aroma lingers with excellent earthy undertones to elevate an otherwise potentially heavy aftertaste.
M&O: the mouthfeel is excellent, lubricating and soothingly carbonated at the same time, while the fulsome body doesn’t go quite heavy at all. This is a successful, robust and yet very approachable Russian Imperial Stout that drinks so well alone, but can also benefit from different types of barrel-ageing. Highly recommended.
09-17-2013 18:15:05 | More by wl0307
3.61/5 rDev -9.5%
11.2 oz bottle into a New Belgium goblet. 12/2011 bottle date, and it says 10% ABV.
A: Pours an extremely dark brown color. The head is a three finger tan shade with large, aggressive-forming bubbles. It settles down into a thin film after a while, leaving decent streaks of lacing on the glass. This one seems to be strongly carbonated - it almost tried to spill out of the bottle.
S: Wow, the aroma features plenty of chocolate at first. I'm really impressed with how strongly it emanates from the glass, too. As it warms up, this is quickly replaced by notes of peat. This quality is somewhat offputting in my opinion - aside from the ham-like smoke, I pick up notes like algae, rubber, plastic, and even electrical fire. It starts off great and ends up falling on its face, so I'll average it out here.
T: An improvement over the aroma. The peat-laden smoke clusters on the opening, lacking some of the unpleasantries on the nose; it's more of a general hammy/woody tone with a mossy backing. This fades into a midtaste of both licorice and dark chocolate. (in addendum, the licorice qualities here don't bother me...maybe it just bothers me in Stone's IRS, I don't know) The finish is laden with textbook roasted malt dryness, char, seaweed, and perhaps a faint touch of stewed dark fruits. It's definitely peaty throughout; if you don't like seaweed and moss in your imperial stout, you will NOT like this. On the positive side, it doesn't drown out the other notes - in fact, it's solidly complex at the end of the day.
M: I was right, this is strongly carbonated and airy in its feel. Dry, too. In spite of that, it does have a substantial heft on the palate - still, it's too lively on the tongue for a RIS. This becomes a better brew in all palate aspects once the carbonation calms down.
O: Rather unusual. The flavor profile is great, but the aroma is inconsistent and the feel is more in line with a BSDA (not unexpected given its country of origin). Having said that, once I got used to the bold peatiness, I did grow to like it quite a bit. Even at $8 a bottle, I'd entertain the notion of buying this again. Probably not often, though.
07-03-2013 03:28:42 | More by ThisWangsChung
3.94/5 rDev -1.3%
Dec. 5 2011 on the shelton brothers label on the back, not sure what the date means.
Pours an absolutely gorgeous jet black with 2 fingers of small bubbled light tan head.
Lots going on in the nose. Smokey, chocolatey, woodsy and lots of roasted grains.
Taste is more of the same. Smoke definitely dominates but isn't totally overpowering. Just a touch of alcohol warmth, exactly what you want in a RIS.
Mouthfeel is very smooth and ever so slightly creamy. Definitely a sipper but relatively easy drinking for the ABV (my bottle said 10%)
Overall this is a solid RIS, especially if you like a touch of smoke. Glad I picked it up, might get another one at some point to try with a bit more age on it.
06-24-2013 06:46:27 | More by quirkzoo
4.16/5 rDev +4.3%
Pours a thin black or dark brown with light edges and a huge foamy khaki-colored head. Smells of phenolic smoke immediately reminding me of peat smoke. Bit of a peppered beef jerky aroma underneath. As it warms, and I acclimate to the smokiness, campfire-roasted marshmallows and milk chocolate notes emerges. Flavor is not so intense as the nose would suggest. There is a roasty, yet smooth maltiness, almost a bit chewy that stands up to the spicy peat. I can pick up hints of things like tootsie roll-like chocolate, caramel and dark chocolate pot de crème, but the peat smoke is still the dominant note. The peat does not, however, overpower this hefty brew overall.
05-24-2013 03:29:57 | More by BeerZack
4.35/5 rDev +9%
Poured from a 11.2 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice. Date on bottle reads Dec 5th, 2011.
Appearance: Pours nearly pitch black with a moderate amount of carbonation. Huge tan head that takes up half of the glass before slowly fading to a thinner creamy layer. Leaves a decent amount of lacing.
Smell: A big dark aroma that is very smoke and peat driven. Dark roasted malts with a strong scent of smoke and peat. Hints of dark bitter chocolate, coffee, burnt toast, caramel, toffee, biscuit, and yeast. Big hints of molasses and anise licorice spicing. Subtle hints of dark raisin, fig, cherry, and prune. Light hints of earthy and grassy hops. The smoked malt, peat, and chocolate stand out the most.
Taste: Follows the nose with a dark malty taste driven by smoke and peat. Dark roasted malts with a big taste of smoke and peat along with good notes of dark chocolate, coffee, toast, burnt caramel, toffee, yeast, grains, and biscuit. Sweet taste of molasses. Licorice taste from some anise. Undertones of dark dried fruit with notes of dark cherry, raisin, prune, and fig. Very subtle earthy hop presence. A very good smoked and peated malt taste.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Very creamy and smooth. Kind of thin for an imperial stout. Alcohol heat is light.
Overall: A really good smoky stout. It may lack a little in body, but the dark smoke and peat flavors are really good.
04-28-2013 06:17:42 | More by MattyG85
British Columbia (Canada)
4.05/5 rDev +1.5%
750ml dated 7 dec. 2011. Thanks Hoppypocket!
Appearance. Pours a deep dark brown, black in the glass with two fingers of tan head.
Smell. Smokey peat and dark roasted malts, just a little molasses and maybe some dark fruits as well, but the smoke is pretty predominant.
Taste. Again very smokey and peaty with some tobacco and tar. There's also a bit of dark malt, molasses, and maybe a trace of dark fruit.
Mouthfeel. Medium+ body, very light for the abv and it actually works well. Medium-strong carbonation.
Overall. A very interesting beer that doesn't really conform to any style. High abv, lighter body, smokey as hell, and some big stout characteristics ...very interesting indeed.
04-27-2013 02:25:50 | More by Rutager
Hemel & Aarde from Brouwerij De Molen
89 out of 100 based on 119 ratings.