It's Alive! - Mikkeller ApS

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It's Alive!It's Alive!

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BA SCORE
84
good

373 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 373
Reviews: 184
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 12.67%
Wants: 14
Gots: 41 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website
Denmark

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.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 373 | Reviews: 184
Photo of dcmchew
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Pours dark orange with shiny ruby hues and a bit hazy. Huge pillowy fluffy head, gets shredded by bubbles soon, receding to a few floating messy specks and a thick sticky lace.
Smells great, with orchard fruit (red and yellow apple, pear, quince, apricot) rolled in candi sugar, a touch of tartness, even a faint tropical note. Sweet smell amplified by caramel, butterscotch, banana chips, reminding of spongecake and dominating over the Brett funk (a bit of wood, moldy, spicy), hopefully not entirely.
As a first note, it's surprisingly light. Starts fruity, a bit bitter, but mostly sweet and sour, with lime, green apple, white grape, faint pear and sour cherry, with a cider-like acidity. Yeasts take over, with a big earthiness. Somewhat typical Belgian mix of spice & herb (pepper, faint coriander, lemongrass, floral tea) followed by light Brett funk (some mold, hay, faint stave, green grass, twigs). Malts enhance the earthy notes with bread crust, with a lower level of sweetness than in the smell and just a few drops of candi sugar. Finishes with a woody dry feel, funky, with some earthy/green hop showing up to provide a mild bitterness.
Medium to light body, as is the carbonation, just slightly prickly. Taste reminds of a champagne, but the body doesn't. Aftertaste is funky with some lingering fruit, but not much. The sugars seem to settle in more seriously in time, but it doesn't become too sweet.
I prefer the Orval. Getting that out of the way, this was indeed a nice Belgian-style ale with nice saison characteristics, not as funky as the Lychee/Wine Barrel version (only one that i tried, pretty sure the others are great too), but lighter and actually.. almost a different thing entirely.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a dull rustic-orange with a 3 finger, foamy ivory colored head that was well lasting.Visible carbonation was a mixture of slow steady rising micro bubbles with spontaneous rapidly rising macro bubbles. The lacing left a random spotty spongey patching down the sides of the glass.

S: The nose yielded sour oranges and pale grains along with musky scents of lemon. A mildewy floral hopping closes things out. The nose was subtle from the brettamyoces, pale and soft, and somehow was expecting more here.

T: sharp and acidic with funky sour oranges that blast the tastebuds from the start thanks in part to the lively carbonation. Things settle down after the initial sip with soft mildew lemons and sour citrus. Alcohol is well detected here with a tart yeasty nature delivering hints of sour fruit (pears), bananas, warm pineapple and warm grapefruit. the overall flavor was musky and tart wit a warming sour alcohol presence just before the finish of lingering sour citrus.

M: light bodied, very smooth, and despite the visible nature fairly soft carbonation wise. A sour funky citrus laces the tongue.

D: Wild and funky but overall well done and toned. A sour citrusy, Belgian pale, good for a single serving (bomber) but not intriquing enough to warrant repeatability or future purchase. One try is suffice and only moderate when compared to their other fantastic beers they brew.

Photo of aasher
3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours like the muddy creek out back. It looks like dark, murky muddy water with an off white head that laces the glass beautifully. It smells great. It's tart, it's sour and it has this light fresh fruity-like sweetness that rounds it out. I know this beer hasn't been made in a little while but it could be more. It could be more tart, it could bolder, it could be more fruity, it could be more sour. I would guess I'd rate this an A- if fresh, but right now I can't do it. Some sours get stronger with age, this one lessens. It's tart but not tart enough. It drinks smoothly enough but it's not what it could be. It's drinkable but not overly so. This beer I'm sure could be better. Regardless, I'm glad I could try it.

Photo of Tone
4.27/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, amber/orange color. One inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of sweet malt, yeast, slight floral, slight citrus, slight spice, and hint of tart malt. Fits the style of a Belgian Strong Pale Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with an average carbonation level. Tastes of slight grass, slight wheat, slight tart malt, slight floral, sweet malt, and hops. Overall, good appearance, aroma, body, and blend.

Photo of DrJay
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Grub cracked this one on Day 1 of the 2008 Biergotter Tasting. Thanks!
This one had a gigantic, frothy beige head that produced big, chunky clumps of lacing. Semi-clear and a red/amber colour. The aroma was full of hops of the floral/soapy variety and there was a bit of fruity tartness, some sweetness, and faint earthy funk, perfume and jasmine. Bitterness was a bit assertive, but still nicely balanced. The flavour was very floral and perfumy, with many of the same characters that were in the aroma. Medium bodied with lowish carbonation, decent texture. Pretty good overall, but outclassed by the other beers we enjoyed this evening.

Photo of Viggo
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to grub for opening up this one! Last beer of day 1 of insane DrJay visit epic tasting.

Pours a hazy copper orange, huge off white head forms, tons of lace on the glass, great retention, forms a solid layer. Smell is neat, sweet and spicy, fruits, musty grapes, grapefruit and orange peel, wood, very fragrant and perfumy, some jasmine, bit of funk, neat. Taste is similar, perfumy, floral, very spicy, jasmine tea bitterness, bit of funky woodiness, light fruits, interesting stuff, a bit astringent and drying in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodieed with medium carbonation, not too bad. From the name I was expecting more of a wild ale, but for a Belgian pale this had some pretty cool character to it. Thanks Russ!

Photo of wordemupg
3.56/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into tulip 15/3/12

A slight haze in a golden amber body, about as many tiny bubbles as you could fit in the glass make it hard to well fit in the glass, even the gentle pour ends up with half a glass of soapy foam that ends up as an eraser top island after leaving spider web lacing well down the glass

S smells like some mildly funky brown sugar with a little fruit and dark bread

T some more hops then I could smell but not by much, some thistle and earthy notes maybe even a little tea bag, the Brett is mild and although a decent brew I was hoping for more

M a little foamy from all the bubbles with just a little heat from the booze but its pretty mild, a fruity funky aftertaste is faint but lingers

O maybe I'm missing the point with this one but I wasn't all that impressed, its decent beer but considering the price tag I wont be buying a second

not worth 15$ but there was only one way to find that out, looks great but perhaps it needs some age or something, I remember loving USAlive this ones not as impressive

Photo of Brad007
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I just couldn't say no to Mikkeller and I'm glad that I didn't.

Pours a luscious amber with a thick head that quickly fades. I absolutely love the presentation here.

Funky fresh with grape, pear and apple notes from the funk. Aging this in wine barrels is a brilliant tactic. It accentuates the grape.

A cooling rush of funk coats my tongue, leaving behind a plethora of grape and apple notes. Not very heavy on flavor but it gets the job done.

The mouth warms up due to the 8% level. Personally, a bit of aging would only strengthen the appeal of this ale. The carbonation is overwhelming at this stage.

Well worth a try if you're a Mikkeller fanboy like I.

Photo of scruffwhor
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very deep, translucent copper amber hue. What an awesome, thick, dense, sticky head. Spongey and very light tan in color. But very small and slow lacing. The aroma makes me think of the produce aisle at my local grocery store, Dominicks. More specifically, like when you bury your nose in th apple display. Particularly, green apples. Very yeasty, fruity taste. Unsweetend apple sauce and caramel malts. The apples and caramel slowly move to a smokey toasted malt. Hints of Tandy leather give an earthy hop finish. Not as funky as expected, but pretty hoppy and earthy. Saddle leather palate earthy. Pretty easy to drink considering the 8% abv. You would never guess the abv. without looking at the bottle.

Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours a hazy orange-copper color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of smooth pale malts with candied light fruits - apricots and pears - with a mild tartness. Also present are moderate amounts of funk and hints of herbal hops.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Mildly grainy pale malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by soft and lightly tart medium fruit flavors. Midway through the sip hints of funk work their way into things before fading out into a crisp ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall this was a solid beer but no one thing stood out as exceptional. Still, it's worth a shot.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.3/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml caged and corked bottle. Served in snifter, the beer pours a hazy copper/brown color with about a half inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both average. Aroma is mostly fruity (but also a bit light), it smells like tart apples, vinegar, funk, peppery spice, and some pears. Unfortunately, a lot of that doesn't come out in the taste. It tastes like some bready malt, yeast, peppery spice, and a little bit of tart fruit. There's also a bitter finish, but something just seems a little bit "off" about the taste. Mouthfeel is medium, it has moderate and soft carbonation. Drinkability is decent, it's smooth and not hard to drink at all. I'll have to revisit this one in the future.

Photo of jrallen34
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Mikkeller. This is an Orval clone.

This pours a super dark orange with an off white head, very flimsy head that falls quickly, light lacing...Aroma is super light, sweet apricots mostly with a touch of sourness on the end...The taste is ok, a little sweet and sour, lots of herbal notes. This is actually a pretty good clone of Orval, really close, this is just a little sweeter.

If you like Orval give this a shot to just compare the two, if you don't know Orval, skip it.

Photo of avalon07
4.08/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a bright amber color and a clear consistency. There was a massive, fluffy, long-lasting head. Very good lacing.

S: A combination sweet/musty aroma, with traces of fruit and yeast.

T: Tasted of Belgian yeast, esters, light fruit, malt, and a hint of a woody element. An interesting and lively flavor with a good personality. Well done.

M: A super-carbonated beer with a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: A solidly made, tasty and drinkable beer.

Photo of dgilks
3.97/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This had just run out at The Pumphouse in Sydney but the bartender offered me a glass from his growler of the beer. Thanks mate!

Hazy, dark amber colour with a smooth, foamy head. Poor head retention.

Lots of barnyard funk on the nose with a touch of tropical fruit. Slightly earthy. Really nice Brettanomyces character.

More funk with only the lightest of acidic touches. This is what a Brett beer is all about. Plenty of fruit as in the aroma and some malt.

Medium-full body with low carbonation. Smooth.

A nice beer with lots and lots of funk. I feel like it lacks a bit of depth and is a little one dimensional in terms of the funk but that is what you get from Brett.

Photo of ccrida
3.3/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, It's Alive! is copper with a large, off-white head, fairly slow settling and some what rocky, with pretty heavy, sugary looking lace. Darker then I was expecting, or prefer, but nice head, which is really the main thing I'm looking for here.

Smell is good and funky, with traces of caramel and hops that I wasn't expecting, as well as wafts of alcohol. It gets sweeter as it warms, tropical fruits, although I served it at cellar temp. An 'interruption' let it warm to room temp.

Taste is pretty acrid, very peppery, with a musty note from the brett that is a bit moldy. Not to exciting, the bitterness of the hops is amplified by the bugs, although the (unusual for the style IMHO) richness of the malt helps temper that. I wish I had aged this for another year at least to let the bugs do their thing and develop some complexity, I expect they'd soften the sharpness of the yeast and hops. Still, it grew on me as I worked though the bottle and let it warm up, but that also made the ABV more apparent.

Mouthfeel is actually on the thinner side, well a bit watery but medium bodied, with a drier finish, a bit sharp.

Drinkablity is not to stellar at this point, just not too exciting or tasty, a bit thick, very bitter and lacking depth. For the price, you'd be better served to sit on these for a while. The cork had a nice pop, but the beer barely moved. I'd hope with some time under it's belt, it would overflow a bit!

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.58/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pretty, slightly dark, slightly hazy golden amber with a VERY thick buttery off-white head. The bottle I got fizzed like nobody’s business, so have a towel handy! Aroma is average strength, fruity, yeasty and somewhat sweet with a malty hint. Flavor is mainly fruity, sweet but not too sweet, and has malt and yeast hints plus just a bit of butterscotch. Texture is fairly fizzy, leaving a rather persistent tingle on the tongue and lips.

Photo of champ103
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a cloudy reddish/orange color. A two finger off-white head forms, and gently recedes to a ring. Some sticky lace is left down the glass.
S: This has an odd aroma. It is not bad, I just can't tell what it is. Some fruity and malty sweetness up front. An odd soapy and perfume like aroma as well.
T: Follows the nose. Malty sweet with some fruity flavors. Though that odd soapy and perfume character again.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. A little thin and watered down though. Not hard to drink, but the alcohol is noticeable just enough to make this a slow sipper.

I am kind of at odds with this beer. Not bad at all, but nothing really special. All in all, I have had better Brett beers. It is worth a try though.

Photo of thagr81us
3.3/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks goes out to beermeX2 for sharing this one at the Down South Beer Tasting while aasher was in town to visit! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured red-orange with a minimal off-white head. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, orange rine, fruit, banana, and subtle funk. The flavor was of sweet malt, sugar, wheat, banana, and fruit. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. There was just something about this one that was a little off-putting in the flavor. Maybe it was the way the sugar blended with the fruits present??? Who knows, but this could have been a lot better if this were not the case. Glad I got to try it, but that is about it.

Photo of drpimento
4.59/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow! What a brew! Poured with a nice small (in a small sample glass) off white head and a little lace. Aroma is an incredible floral with yeast, malt and some hop. Flavor's about the same with massive malt and a little earthiness. Great, chewy body and carbonation. Color is a copper amber. Finish is like flavor. Deliscious. Brett. adds a lot to the the beer with the flavor and edge. Could even be a session for slow drinking.

Photo of mrfrancis
3.76/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy, ruddy amber wih a puffy, thick khaki head.

S: Lots of brettanomyces funk on the nose with some spiced pear, green apple, talc, caramel, and candy sugar scents beneath it.

T: Notes of caramel, candy sugar, grass, lemon, spiced pear, green apple, chalk, talc, and tart, lactic brettanomyces assault the palate. The finish is sharp and lactic with huge brettanomyces funk underscored by subtle notes of orchard fruits, caramel, and candy sugar.

M: Medium-bodied and syrupy. Carbonation is very, very firm. Alcohol is subdued.

O: This is an interesting strong ale. With its overpowering wild yeast character, it should please fans of lambics, American wild ales, and the funkier, yeastier saisons. A very solid offering.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.32/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 25.4oz bottle into a unibroue tulip.

A - Poured a brownish rubyish amber with a spurt of carbonation upon pour that raced to the top of the glass at first and then trickled sporadically from the bottom to the top. Had a really nice frothy yeasty head with extremely sticky lacing.

S - In a word...candy. Cloves, spices, hops, citrus-like sweetness. Tropical fruit candy.

T - Tangy flavor. Not overwhelming. Kind of an even blend of all the flavors from the nose without any one dominating the flavor. Has a bit of the funky sour flavor from the brett, but subdued.

M - Kind of lively, but extremely smooth. Feels like beer, but so subtly. Leaves a touch of a bitter aftertaste, but not dry at all.

D - Very easy drinker. Glad I tried it.

Photo of Pencible
4.2/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This poured a hazy dark copper with fluffy white head.
S: It smelled spicy and wild and funky and tart, with a bit of floral hops and wheat and other subtleties.
T: It tasted like tart and funky yeast with sweet tropical fruits and honey malt, and a bit of white grape and other subtleties. It had a smooth and tart aftertaste.
M: It was watery with lots of carbonation.
D: This was a great wild ale that was delicate and complex and very clean. It wasn't too funky, as the brett was well integrated and balanced. Body was decent, and the alcohol was well hidden, so it was incredibly easy to drink. Great brew fresh that may improve with age.

Photo of woosterbill
4.18/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Craft Beer Co. into a goblet.

A: Clear orange body under a solid finger of dense tan foam. Tremendous retention, heavy lace. Gorgeous beer.

S: Big bad Brett: grass, barnyard, leather, perfume, spice, and a bit of tropical fruit. Complex and outstanding.

T: Toasty malt joins the parade of Brett craziness; the complexity isn't quite as big here, though, as grassy, fruity, and herbal flavors dominate. Bitingly dry finish. Very good.

M: Lively, frothy, soft. Pleasant.

O: Maybe a couple weeks drinking almost nothing but traditional real ales put me into funk withdrawal, but this beer absolutely hit the spot. The nose was especially glorious. One of my favorite Mikkeller experiences ever.

Cheers!

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle sampled on 09/26/08 at Night of the Funk. Pours a dirty light brown with a small white head. Aroma of citrus and bitter hops. Wow, what an inviting aroma! Flavor is quite ASA-like: lots of wheat and citrusy hops. I didn't get any funky or sour or even Belgiany notes from this, so I'm not sure why it's classified as a BSA...but in any case, I don't really care because this was quite an awesome beer!
8/4/8/4/15 (3.9/5)

Photo of ADZA
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally decided to crack this brew after it has been sitting in my collection for a while now and must admit i had forgot about it anyways it pours a deep mahogany hue with decent carbbonation that leaves a two finger head and some lacing here and there,the aroma is candied fruit and alcohol infused toffee,it has an above average mouthfeel with tastes of boiled candy,toffee,dried fruits and finishes with a nice bitter edge to mash the sweet and sour tastes perfectly,overall a nice beer indeed thats very easy to drink but cos ive been spoiled by this brewer i know he can do better although it is a nice drop.

It's Alive! from Mikkeller ApS
84 out of 100 based on 373 ratings.