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It's Alive! - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
It's Alive!It's Alive!

Educational use only; do not reuse.

187 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 187
Hads: 393
Avg: 3.74
pDev: 17.91%
Wants: 16
Gots: 44 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DarkerTheBetter on 06-06-2008

Brewed at De Proef Brouwerij, Lochristi-Hijfte, Belgium.

Ingredients: Water, malt (pale and cara), light candy, hops (hallertauer and styrian goldings), yeast and brettanomyces.
View: Beers (274) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 187 | Hads: 393
Photo of largadeer
1.9/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Appearance: Murky, slightly turbid amber, darker than I was expecting. A gentle pour leaves me with three fingers of head in my glass, which takes a few moments to settle. Head retention is good, but this one is overcarbonated.

Smell: Lightly funky, not overly so, with a sweet toffee backbone from the malt and a touch of herbal hops. Somewhat medicinal overall.

Taste & mouthfeel: Herbal, peppery, slightly tart up front. The malt base is very dry, but there's more bitterness than I'd like and not enough bretty funk or sourness. Like a rough, unrefined Orval with excessive bitterness. The finish is loaded with bitter herbal hops and dry husky grain. After half a glass all I could taste was bitterness - not terribly impressive. Most of the bottle went down the drain.

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Photo of nrbw23
2.43/5  rDev -35%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A- Pours a murky orange color with a foamy white head. Head has good retention and leaves some spotty lacing.

S- Smells of Belgian yeast, flowery, funky, caramel hops and floral hops.

T- Wow didn't like this at all...totally different from the nose. Pretty complex but it just doesn't go well together. I let this on sit for a while and came back to it and it was pretty much the same taste just a lot stronger. Just didn't taste good at all.

M- Light to medium body and high carbonation.

D- No thanks I'll pass.

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Photo of philipquarles
2.63/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

75cl bottle. Pours kind of a nasty yellow-brown with a smallish off-white head. Sweet, yeasty smell. Brown sugar and some very light Brett character. Faintly fruity. Not very pleasant. Very yeasty taste, again fairly sweet with a bit of fruit. Very restrained Brett notes. Hops evident toward the end. Light-medium body. An underwhelming take on this style, that I really just don't want to drink much of.

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Photo of klewis
2.65/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a hazy amber with a moderate, bubbly head. Light lacing.

S: Citric aromas with just a bit of funk.

T: On the first sip, caramel malts with a light lemon zest flavor and a bit of brett. On consequent sips, the brett overwhelmed the palate, replacing the light malty taste with a dry tannic one.

M: Medium-bodied with lots of carbonation. Dry.

D: No thank you sir. If every sip tasted like the first, this would be a solid beer, but this unfortunately did not happen.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
2.71/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottle into red wine glass. Opened and poured chilled, rated at 45 degrees and up.

Pours a copper-brown, with a stout light-khaki pillowy head that settles into a thin cap, lots of random big bubbles in the middle with a tenacious grip on the side of the glass.

Nose is interesting. Some very sweet caramel is the first thing to hit the nose, rich and a bit bready, bit of burnt toffee, along with some very light acetic acid and green apples that come off kind of odd, perhaps because of how sweet the nose is. Black pepper makes an appearance as well.

Taste isn't any better. Earthy, organic tasting, lots of band aid. Plasticy. Peppery and spicy underneath, but even that ends up taking an earthy, musty, vegetal character. Bready malt sits underneath it all, present but showing up more in the finish and exhale than anywhere else - half hidden behind the weirdness that sits on top of it. Earthy, peppery bitterness sits on the palate. Not an entirely pleasant experience.

Mouthfeel is actually ok, full bodied and a bit lush, creamy, though a bit grainy and chelky as well, which hurts.

Drinkability is pretty terrible. It's not revolting, but it's definitely not something I'd look forward to.

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Photo of badbeer
2.78/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Amber colored with a white head that retains pretty well. Smell is pretty good, I got a lot of horse blanket in it, as well as some earthy notes, and some spices. Taste unfortunately, did not have as much of the horse blanket, or much of what I find enjoyable, best thing to describe it was like Vick's green cough spray. I wanted to like the taste better, but I just kept being distracted by this flavor. Medium bodied and high carbonation. Don't know that I'd have this again.

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Photo of andrewinski1
2.87/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip. The color is blood orange. There is a light off-white head that only barely covers the body.

The aroma is very vinous. There is a good dose of sweet oak and some tart vinegar notes. There is a good dose of mustyness and dirt in the aroma as well.

The taste starts out with sweet orange malt like flavor. There is a hint of caramel in there as well. The finish has more wild yeast flavor components with just a hint of tartness. Some of the dirt-like flavors come through in the finish as well. The flavor is mostly dirty the more i drink it.

This is medium bodied. This might be passed its prime. I'm not sure how wild I am about Mikkeller's wild ales in general.

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Photo of mymrnngjckt
2.9/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750ml poured into an unmarked chalice glass.

Beer pours a golden brown with a two finger head. Smell of hops and yeast are dominant in the nose. Some citrus notes and also a bit of clove perhaps.

The taste was unique. A hoppy beer with a sour beer aftertaste. Or is it a sour beer with a hoppy beer aftertaste. I don't know. The mouthfeel was very carbonated. The sour beer sensation, which I liked, seemed to go away the more I drank.

The beer is drinkable but not overlly impressive.

Not sure I would seek this one out again.

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Photo of Bendurgin
2.91/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a tulip. This one pours a muddy light brown with a bit of a reddish hue. It has a small cap of bubbly light foam.

The aroma has a strong sweet caramel smell with a vinous aroma. Musty grapes in the aroma with some earthy notes. This one seems a bit all over the place. Earthy dirt notes on the pallet with some sweet toffee. Pretty subdued flavor, nothing offensive but less than exciting.

the body is light with slightly low carbonation. Overall this one is okay. A little messy overall but this one is drinkable.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
2.95/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Shared the bottle with angrybabboon.

Appearance: Hazy sunset orange. Head is off-white, sticky, loose and rocky. Massive head retention. Drops off after a few minutes. Massively sticky.

Smell: massive hit of Belgian yeast from the start. Clove in abundance with some overripe banana coming through. Powdery Brett. Earthy with hay and grass. Slightly musty. Some slightly sweet malts. Faintly bready. Some nice citrus. Cracker dry.

Taste: Massive clove. Seriously massive. Backing earthy spiciness hits at pepper and nutmeg. Cardamom? Powdery Brett plays right behind the base yeast. Some bready malts and slight citrus hopping as. Earthy and slightly spicy. Tiny layer of funk. Yeast heavy. Bread crust. Slightly cooked malts.

Mouthfeel: Modertely light body with a solid carbonation.

Overall: Unique to say the least. Belgian yeast layered over a pronounced Brettanomyces funkiness is just crazy. Not sour, not really funky, not Belgian. This is a beer made of nots because I have no idea what it is.

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Photo of Franky3
2.95/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Caged and corked bottle..pours a orange red ice tea color with about a half inch thick good white head.

Smell- a thick head gives notes of ginger...notes of brettanomyces and possibly cherry...traditional and good belgian scent. A bit of a face warming sour scent.

Taste- Sort of where I believe this beer goes wrong...the smell calls for a bold sharp brew with sticking brett, but delivers a dull, low, back of mout dusty and flat feel. There is something in there that tingles your tonsils, not neccesarily in a good way...it is reminding me of the grape bubbalicious that I never really liked after you have had it in your mouth for too long...

not very drinkable...just not my favorite

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Photo of kiddynamite920
2.98/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Very clumpy and thick head, leaving sticky lacing. Pretty standard for the style. Beer is more orange than pale yellow.

S: Aroma is tart, funky, citrusy and is dusty a smell? Perhaps moldy would work better. Definitely noticeable Brettanomyces, but not too much Belgian pale qualities come through.

T: Funky more than citrusy, almost moldy cheese in flavor. Has a bit of sweetness towards the end, but this one definitely leaves a Brett flavor in your mouth.

M: Thin and low carbonation, has a creamy mouthfeel that just fades into funk quickly. Not overly enjoyable.

O: I was drawn to this beer by its stark label, don't regret buying it and trying it but I dont see myself seeking this out ever again. A mediocre base beer with an overly funky character.

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Photo of seedyone
3/5  rDev -19.8%

10/02/12 On tap at Rattle n Hum, NYC. This is a tongue twister. Team taste buds is having issues with signals. One swallow is sweet-ish, the next less so, & the next not at all. Never any sweet or bitterness but far from all together sweet. Hate to submit to the suggestion, but it does strike me as an organic/evolving taste. All this w/a funky finish. Can't imagine what a bottle gets you.

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Photo of revkibosh
3.05/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: Pours a beautiful amber color with a thick head that hangs around.

S: Smells wonderful right out of the bottle, fruits and flowers with that typical Belgian undertone. Smell alone, this is a wonderful beer.

T: eh... doesn't taste the way it smells. Fruity and floral at the start, very earthy in the middle with an almost smokey flavor, and lasting bitterness on the end. The more I drink the more the bitterness lasts. Each new sip tastes more fruity in the front and bitter on the end. Doesn't work for my tastes. Not terrible, but not great.

M: very carbonated. Based on the pour this is to be expected. Leaves my mouth very dry.

D: aside from the flavor this beer is very drinkable... the 8.0% is well hidden.

Overall this beer is decent. I just don't like the taste all that much. The complexity is amazing but I don't like the combination of flavors.

edit: I let this beer "open up" while I drank a different one and thought I'd comment on the change.

umm... Wow, the smokiness has changed to cigarette butts... Not even kidding. While the nose has gotten funkier and sweeter smelling, almost candy like, the flavor has, shall we say, developed. It still has the fruity front, but the smoky flavor that was once there has become more prominent and the aftertaste is straight ashtray. Not as bitter as before but not better. Still very interesting and complex flavors but good god...

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Photo of angrybabboon
3.06/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this

Appearance: Cloudy, amber orange, pours with a large, rocky, white head - keeps a nice cap, leaves sheets of sticky lacing,

Smell: Somewhat light, with Belgian yeast and some hops - some Belgian yeast, a mild spiciness, some light fruity esters - citrus hops - some light minerality that kind of reminds me of pool chemicals, and lots of phenols

Taste: Somewhat strange - pale, pale malts, very light - some Belgian yeast, with some clove, some spiciness - some light funk, some light fruits, some citrus - very phenolic, like bitter Band-Aids - not really sour, slightly tart, but mostly watery - woody flavors, some light sweetness

Mouthfeel: Lightbody, overly carbonated, with a phenolic stickiness

Overall: It's... not great

This is really strange. It's lightly sweet, lightly fruity, lightly funky, definitely phenolic, and watery. It's doesn't really make sense to list this as Belgian Strong Pale Ale, but I guess it doesn't really fit into any categories.

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Photo of hughesm4
3.08/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A. Pours a light copper color with a decent amount of head.

S. A few random spices come out, but has a little of a winelike odor.

T. Not exactly what I expected. My initial drink tasted more like a white wine. The following drinks where not really consistent. Some where had small amount of a spices, but several drinks where just flat and foul.

M. It leaves a slight aftertaste, and it fills the mouth during the initial drink, but nothing spectacular

D. It goes down decently well, especially for the abv. Probably not something that I would drink again, but it was something that I was glad I tried.

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Photo of brentk56
3.08/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber color with a rocky head that leaves a rather spotty lacing pattern

Smell: Rotting pears, ginger, clove, watermelon rind with phenolic hints of acetone

Taste: Rather sweet and fruity (in a wild ale way, of course), up front, with pear, watermelon and peppery spice flavors; by mid-palate, some earthy/oaky flavors add complexity; after the swallow, however, a blast of phenolic acetone elements arrive to dominate the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Try as I might, I just cannot get past the finish in this schizophrenic beer

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.08/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A 750ml corked bottle split with psycohops. Poured into twin shaker glasses, the ale appears akin to murky iced tea with a finger of off white foam. The head settles to a thin layer as it warms. Nose and taste - spoiling tart apples, mild funk, candied apples, smarties candies. Super dry and bitter.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
3.16/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a Hennepin tulip

A- pours a dark shade of orange with a puffy two finger offwhite head. The beer isn't really *cloudy* as much as it's...dark. Some sediment in here too

S- slight hints of brett in the nose, and not much else

T- I'm going to assume there's a lot of brett in here, because I get that typical flavor...and not much else. A little bit of sweetness from the yeast, and that's about all

M- medium bodied. Fine.

O- not great. Not bad. Also not worth the price though

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Photo of jnezda
3.19/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tried this after buying all the Mikkeller's that cam e to @LoneStarBev. I was hoping for more of a Belgian than what I got but all in it was a good beer.

Pours light amber with thin fine head that has little staying power. Some lacing left and the color really is a light amber that retains its hazy appeal long after the head fades.

On the mild side for all flavors, including some light fruit, apricots, dates, raisins pears. No too nutty and limited to no hoppiness or bitterness. For a mild Belgian it fulfilled it role but left something to be desired on almost all counts.

I know I have said this with a number of reviews but for the price this beer should be passed over. Very good beer for the style but seems to be about twice the price of some of its competitors.

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Photo of rhinos00
3.21/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into my Corsedonk tulip glass.

A- Pours a semi-clear amber with a healthy, pillow fluffy white head.

S- Very subtle lemon, citrus aromas. Some funk with nice brett is detectable as well.

T- Completely opposite of the aroma. I was truly expecting something sour and funky. What I got was something that had mellow, bland flavor that tasted more like a weak Belgian Pale Ale than the wild ale description on the bottle. All surprises aside, the taste was just not that impressive.

M- Medium bodied. Just had a watered down characteristic that I didn't really care for. Finished dry.

D- Okay. It was pretty easy to put this down even though it didn't have much of a taste profile.

Overall, once I put the anticipated taste aside, the beer definitely became more drinkable. Still, given the price tag on this beer, I would probably not buy it again.

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Photo of photomike
3.23/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared with BA NPAwesome. Thanks Nat!!!

Pours a hazy orange brown with an orangy white head. Moderate retention. Not a lot of light passes through it. Kind of an ugly color, but its got a nice head on it.

Smell is crazy. Very funky and spicy with a strong fruity flavor reminiscent of overripe, fermented orange. Tart on the nose with some vapor.

Taste is musty and dry, with some vague, nondescript fruit flavors. Lightly tart with a bitter finish that reminds me of orange peel.

Mouthfeel is sparkly and effervescent. Medium bodied with a slightly oily finish. Nice.

Highly drinkable for 8%. Very dry with little detectable alcohol. Somewhat refreshing and it goes down easy.

Overall, very funky and unusual. Hard to evaluate, but definitely worth at least one try.

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Photo of dustin22martin
3.26/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This beer had been sitting in a cooler for over a year. It was slightly orange, fairly heady with a grassy, barnyardy smell. The taste, however, was nothing but barnyard. It tasted like it was brewed IN a horse. Too much for me, but if that's your thing, give this one a go.

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Photo of nick76
3.26/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is wild and funky, there is pepper and ginger as well as sour fruit, malt, herbs, and cedar. The appearance is amber with a huge head. The flavor is like the aroma but not overly funky. The palate is thin. Overall not bad for a wild beer. It's more than I expected.

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Photo of corby112
3.27/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy dark golden amber/chestnut brown with a tick one finger foamy yellowish beige head. Decent retention, slowly fades into a lasting ring. Not much lacing.

Bready/yeasty aroma with subtle light fruit notes and earthy tartness. Hints of apple and pear as well as a grassy straw character compliment the earthy brett.

Very yeast medium body with slight roasted malt, peppery spiciness and a sour/tart earthy dry finish. There is some slight crisp light fruit character but this is overpowered by the funky tart brett flavor.

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It's Alive! from Mikkeller ApS
84 out of 100 based on 187 ratings.