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Fra Til (From To) - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
Fra Til (From To)Fra Til (From To)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

63 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 63
Hads: 98
Avg: 4.18
pDev: 10.29%
Wants: 4
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cjgator3 on 11-18-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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

Ingredients: Water, malt (pale, cara-crystal, pale chocolate and chocolate), unmalted oats, dark cassonade, hops (Centennial and Cascade), spices (star anise, cinnamon, clove and coriander) and yeast.
View: Beers (294) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 63 | Hads: 98
Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One question is what is it. Pours a thick dark brown coffee-looking chocolate imperial stout. Aroma of coffee. Some head and lines of lace. Taste is of good coffee, a bit of expresso, chocolate, barley.Initial bitterness that is licorice and mollasses sweetened down. Another off-the-scale by Mikkeller.

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Photo of Knapp85
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours out as a nice deep rich brown color with a really good sized head on it. The lacing was nice and the retention was really good too. The smell of the beer is herbal, Lots of different aromas coming off of it. The taste of the beer is really nice, plenty of anise in the flavor, some other herbs I'm not really sure of and it's got a hefty amount of malts too in it. The mouthfeel of the beer is thick like a stout, I really like the body this one. Overall I founf this to be very nice, it's a really good brew to have in the winter time around the holidays. I would love to have this one again.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color porter with a large off-white head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of chocolate malt is dominating with light spices also noticeable. Taste is dominated by creamy 60% cacao chocolate with a light spicy finish though I didn't find as much spices as per beer description. Body has a very nice creamy texture with limited filtration and good carbonation. Very well done and something I would drink more often if it was available in my neighbourhood.

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Photo of zeff80
4.07/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out an opaque, dark, dark brown color with a small, tan head of fluffy foam. It left traces of sudsy lace on the glass.

S - It smelled oaky and earthy with mild "christmas-like" spices. There was a subtle hint of bourbon, too.

T - Chocolate, caramel and toffee flavors at first sip with touches of vanilla. The cinnamon and anise spices are mild but clearly present. It has a bitter hop bite.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a smooth, dry finish. A medium bodied ale with some boozy alcohol warmth.

D - This is a very unique but delicious porter. It's like they've made a Christmas porter with a hoppy kick. Very nice.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a wine glass.

What a nice gift. It pours a lovely dark brown topped by a finger or so of tan foam. The nose comprises cedar, mint, chocolate, spruce, and a touch of roasted malts. The taste brings more of the same, along with some light peppermint, figs, and molasses. The body is a light-ish medium, with a moderate carbonation and a fairly dry finish. Overall, though not the greatest exemplar of the Baltic porter style, this is a pretty darn tasty brew. I could see enjoying this happily during the holiday season.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to my brother for sharing this bottle. Bottled in 2008.

The beer pours a dark brown color with a large tan head. The aroma is roasted malt, dark cherries, chocolate and molasses. Fairly complex with all of the elements blending nicely.

The flavor is burnt and roasted malt, coffee, chocolate and dark fruit. The flavor is much roastier than the aroma, which works out nicely. The dark fruit is hidden in the background behind the malt. The heavily roasted malt also provides some bitterness. I don't get much spicing in the flavor, but that may be because the malt is so prominent.

Medium to full mouthfeel and high, prickly carbonation. The only thing I would change about the beer is to dial down the carbonation a little bit.

A nice, complex porter that has aged very nicely.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.83/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2008; Sampled June 2011
Pours with a frothy, somewhat large bubbled, well browned head (it is dark enough that you can’t really call it tan anymore); the head subsides quite slowly leaving lots of lacing and falling with a very varied, rocky surface. The beer is a deep, dark brown color that perhaps some black touches to it. The beer smells quite spicy still, with notes that remind me of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. There is perhaps a hint of nuttiness to this beer, that suggests at a very feint oxidation. There is a rich underlying, toasted maltiness here that suggests also at a rich caramelized malt character. Notes of molasses mix with the spice character that suggests of pumpkin pie. There is perhaps a hint of tartness here that also suggest at pumpkin pie and perhaps a dark fruit character (though this last is fairly subtle). The aroma on this is quite vibrant and interesting after all this time (I wonder if the spices were overwhelming when this was fresh).

Nicely carbonated, which helps to carry the medium’ish viscous body across the palate without letting it get too heavy. The body lingers on the tongue after a sip. The beer has a sweetness to it that speaks of complex toasted malt, browned caramel and molasses. There is a certain phenolic character to the finish that produces a smokiness as well as a clove note; the smokiness lingers in the palate, though it is fairly soft overall and the spiciness adds something to the finish that is quite different but sort of substitutes for a hop bitterness (though it is nothing like it). There is a nice, toasted brown bread character that has a spiciness that is reminiscent of spicy browned whole grains. The smokiness the finish at times also tastes a bit vegetal at times. The finish can actually get a bit weird at times. The spiciness also takes on a certain woodiness to it (which seems to be akin to the flavors of aged cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice). I like that this beer is not overly heavy, but has a certain richness to it. There is a touch of a cola flavor to this beer, though it is fairly subtle. As the beer warms up, lots of roasted, quite porter like notes start to become noticeable; the dry quality this accentuates helps to balance the sweetness and sweet accentuating spice character that is here, though this was certainly never a cloying beer.

Despite being a touch rough at times in the finish, I find that I am quite enjoying this spice dominated beer. The spices definitely play a large role here, but there is just enough malt complexity to keep this fairly balanced.

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Photo of biegaman
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fra Til is an awfully dark beer for the so-called season of lights; its black and opaque body is without even a single highlight and shuns any of my and the room's overhead lights' efforts at making some. Its head, however, is most decorative and even just a little colorful too; its tan brown lacing festoons the glass in an elegantly patterned drapery.

Judging by smell, this beer is certainly in the running for most distinctive and original brew I've ever tried. The aroma is nothing if not offbeat, showcasing lively, effervescent spices as well as the more familiar roasty and bittersweet components. It's like a giant breath of Christmas air (and it's got enough booze to warm you up a little too).

An ingredients list containing pale, cara-crystal, pale chocolate and chocolate malts, oats, dark sugar, two varieties of hops as well as star anise, cinnamon, clove and coriander reads less an ingredient list and more an inventory sheet for a homebrew store. There's a lot of things put in this and, as result, there's a lot of flavour that comes out of it...

The spices are all unbridled: clove is as rabid as coriander is riotous while cinnamon is only slightly less firm than anise is forceful. The sensation is like a fourth of July pyrotechnics celebration for the palate. Dark, rustic breads are also tasted, albeit slightly overrun by pressing notes of roasty coffee, bakers chocolate, dried fruits and anisette liqueur.

A certain piny, spruce-y quality was also present - I felt as though I were drinking the thing in an enchanted forest. Each sip was at some point resinous, leafy, spicy and minty; evidently Mikkeller found a way to get hops and spices to work together. One must also factor in the esters of the yeast to fathom what a spicy, savory, complex treat this was.

It takes a very skilled brewer to blend so many spices in such a bold manner and create something as palatable and delightful as this. Fra Til is one of the most simultaneously distinctive and delectable beers I've had (even more so than its predecessor Til Fra) and considering how well this bottle held up after 2 years aging, I'm sad to not have more.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml Bottle
Gold Foil
Bottled 2008

Poured into my Corsendonk Christmas Ale glass, a very nice black color, very nice carbonation, very nice one-finger plus foamy tan head, which leaves some nice small islands/sticky lacing. The nose is malty, with some spices, chocolate, coffee/toffee notes. The taste is slightly sweet, malty, very nice chocolate/coffee/toffee notes, there is some spice thing going on as well. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is a very nice BP, quite different than other's I've had.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours motor-oil-black with a enormous pale brown compact and creamy head. Slow dissipation leaves rich lacings.

S: Sweet, hard roasted dark malt. Lots of dark dried fruits. Coffee, chocolate and slight vanilla (oak-aged?).

T: Dry and sweet at the same time. Coffee galore. Roasted malts. Chocolate and vanilla. Burnt. Syrupy. Bitter.

M: Long burnt bitter aftertaste. Body is syrupy full while carbonation is held back.

O: A well-crafted beer, a bit on the wilder side.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle
Bottled 2008

"From To" is the 2008 version of "To From" which was made in 2007.

A- Corked and caged 750ml bottle poured into a tulip glass. Pours a dark black color with a very nice tan colored head that possesses very good retention and lacing qualities.

S- The aroma is dark and roasted malts with hints of cocoa. The big roasty aroma is very good and makes me really anxious to try the taste.

T- The taste like the aroma is dark and roasty with a nice creaminess to it as well. The finish is very moderately hopped, but it does feature a good amount of roasted bitterness to help balance out this brew. Very tasty stuff.

M- the mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate amount of carbonation and a good texture.

D- Mikkeller did a great job with this beer, it is a very enjoyable brew that is highly recommended.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.95/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours an opaque sable with a thick, fine-bubbled tan head. Aroma is smoky with strong tones of coffee and unsweetened chocolate - very mouth-watering. Rich flavor is like mocha with a hoppy undertone and hints of smoke, sweetness, molasses, toffee and spice. Ragged, lively, tingly texture is a great finish to this winner of a beer.

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Photo of drpimento
2.58/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

I can tell where they were going with this one, unfortunately for me, I got the bottle to late to get there. The beer is starting to go sour ( I bought several as Christmas gifts too :( ) The flavors of the beer couple with its turning don't work well together.

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Photo of Bung
4.21/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750, into the Gran Marnier snifter.
Near black pour, did not look that black pouring out, but it is pretty solid. About 2 fingers of tan head. Lowers to just under a finger and really sticks around.

Twigs and juniper are the first things that hit in the aroma. Some corriander, roast malt, dark chocolate. May be just a bit too herbal for me.

Taste is very malty, some roast. Whole bunch of cocoa. There is some nutmeg and a mild hop spiciness, but finishes strong with dry roast and cocoa that lingers.

Man is this smooth. I'm guessing the oats help this out. Creamy, coating, not quite full bodied. Nice standard baltic warming sensation, but the alcohol is no where present in the mouth. Have no problem drinking the whole 750.

Glad I finally got to try this one, had a bottle that broke on a flight home(5 others made it, go figure) about 4 months ago and just located another.

A bit pricey, but I think it's worth if for a Baltic fan.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this at The Brick Store Pub in Decatur. Nice beer.

Finger plus of tight creamy tan head.. Some decent retention. Dark brown leather color to the beer. A little dull in color. Tons of lacing left behind.

Mostly cocoa in the nose with some dark burnt sugar sweetness.. (Later after tasting, this became brown sugar like to me)

Cocoa, brown sugar, slight crème brulee topping flavor along with some very subtle spice. A touch of cinnamon perhaps. Lots of deep, rich malt... very nice and actually grew on me.

Medium bodied, tight prickly carbonation, but overall very smooth.

I enjoyed this beer and happy I tried it. Nice for a cold winter evening.

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Photo of hopdog
4.09/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle. Bottle stamped labeled 'Bottled 2008'.

Poured a dark black color with a huge (4.5) finger off white head. Lacing left on the glass.

Aromas of roast, cocoa, and dried fruits. I was also getting a floral green hoppiness almost akin to a harvest ale.

Tastes for roast, chocolate, and the same floral hoppiness I was getting in the aromas.

This was a nice and solid beer. The only issue was the PA pricing on it - $17 bottle.

Tasted on 11/23/08

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Photo of GbVDave
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Mikkeller goblet.

Bottled 2008

A: Pours a dark cola-brown with mahogany accents at the edges. The head is a massive, three-finger, fluffy, and creamy dark mocha color with amazing retention that left a TON of lace stuck to the inside of the glass.

S: The nose on this beer comes alive just a touch cooler than room temperature, so let it set for awhile. Aromas of dark fruit, black licorice, ginger, roasted malt, dark chocolate, and a little campfire smoke. Has a tangy citrus/tart cherry scent, as well.

T: Big blast of roasty malt followed by some semi-sweet chocolate, dark fruit, honey, cherry, pine, smoke, bittersweet cocoa, citrus, licorice, spices, black pepper, and earthy Belgian yeast. Sweet milk chocolate, tangy fruit, and dark chocolate in the finish.

M: Full and creamy with a bracing hit of bitterness. Much bigger and oilier than I expected. Awesome porter coating left on my lips!

D: The drinkability score was helped along by how full this beer was. Not a trace of typical porter thinness to be found. Excellent!

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Photo of mdagnew
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml corked and capped bottle bought from Beermerchants.com

Poured a deep dark mahogany red colour. Mocha tan head pours big, thick and foamy with a whipped meringue like topping then fades slowly to good thick coating... good sticky lacing...

Aroma - Lots of toasted chocolate and slightly charred malts, some piney resin, nutmeg spiciness, cinnamon and allspice, some coriander, light treacle / brown sugar sweetness, toasted nuts, citrus notes, faint clove, some woodiness, light smoke..

Taste - Rich and lightly spiced chocolate, fruitcake notes, some sooty / charred notes, toasted nuttiness, light brown / muscovado sugar sweetness, piney hops, allspice and cinnamon, some bitter coffee, toffee, nut brittle...

Feel - Rich and creamy with just the slightest sharpness coming through... medium bodied... very very quaffable...

Overall - A superb winter brew - so well balanced and drinkable... highly recommended

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Photo of nickd717
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Toronado SF, listed as "To From," but it beats me whether this is the correct listing. Don't think it was "To From" since that was retired awhile ago. Mikkeller should differentiate between this beer and the other similar beers better.

Anyway, pours from the tap jet black with a one-finger tan head. Looks pretty intense.

Aroma is heavy roast, chocolate, coffee, and a hint of dark fruits. Smells very nice.

Flavor starts off with some some sharp roastiness/char and a little smoke. Strong chocolate and coffee flavors with some nebulous dark fruits, maybe cherry.

Fairly full body with a somewhat slick mouthfeel with average carbonation.

Overall a very enjoyable beer, and drinkable for a beer this thick and charcoaly.

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Photo of rarbring
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An extremely black beer, a brown head leaving good lacing and good curtains.

Extremely much roasted malt, coffee, coffee bean, coffee leftovers, coffee whatever.

Sweet black syrup, dark toffee, dark dried fruits, coffee shots.

Little carbonation, soft and oily, sticky, warm and a big body.

An extreme beer in many ways, but no bad ways.

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Photo of hooliganlife
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours jet black with a nice cocoa and cream head, about a 1/2 inch or so.

very rich, light cherry and roasted malt.

again, a bit rich and a nice lingering sweet dark cherry flavor that just barely nudges over the roasted malts. a slight charcoal flavor mixed in here and there. no booze what so ever.

very thick, a bit like syrup without being too much. nice light carbonation. near perfect.

this was a great baltic porter, a nudge off what most taste like but a great example. i shared this and everyone loved it. i will for sure buy another bottle and see what a year can do.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First off, "From To?" I don't think that is the name of this. It says Holiday Ale Brewed With Spices down the side of it. That's what I would call it. Now Baltic Porter as a style ... cool.

A few years back (two or three) I added several of these to my aging collection. Since I am trying to do a purge, poor me, I have to drink this stuff. I will force myself. I am pretty sure this is the first I tried. Happily, there is more!

It's a heavy duty brew, with a wonderful bunch of favors. It all immediately hits you pretty forcibly, but definitely not offensively. It's black like a stout, but much more refined. Like a porter, but less creamy and thick. But baltic porter sounds about right.

When I opened this I had no idea what I was going to get. It turns out to be a nice treat. This sample is at least three years old. I doubt I will find more when this and the other bottle are gone, but it was nice.

So that first bottle was drank 1-16-2010. Today, 11-23-2011 had had the last, and it is still very nice.

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Photo of BeerSox
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Note after tasting: Try this one out of a snifter or wine glass rather than a pint glass or mug as the style guidelines show. This isn't your typical Baltic Porter as currently (1/3/08) classified on BA, and could just as easily be categorized as a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. The bottle states it's a "Holiday Ale".

750ml corked/caged bottle into nonic. The bottled date appears to have been intentionally rubbed off. The last digit, 8, is still intact, and I assume this means 2008.

Pitch black with a thick and dense two and a half finger tan head that starts off as a rough head (think about the tops of a cloud) that slowly settles to a pillowy bubbly cap. A solid wall of lacing is left in its place. Rings of dense lacing are left on the glass as the beer descends.

The roasty malts are well hidden by some clove-like spices and the earthy Belgian yeast aromas. A touch of chocolate is in the background.

The beer starts off more as a Baltic Porter with some roasty coffee flavors and a little bit of chocolate, but it's then quickly met with some sharp phenols and the characteristic fruit flavors that come from the Belgian yeast. The roasted flavors return in the end to finish off the taste. Full bodied. The warming alcohol shows itself more and more as the beer slowly warms.

An interesting beer from Mikkeller that's hard to pigeon-hole. A cross between a dark Porter and some sort of Belgian Ale. Similar in concept to Hoogstraten Poorter and Allagash Black, but in this case it seems the Belgian Ale is the dominant style compared to the other two. Recommended.

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Photo of budgood1
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage. 750 ml bottle. gold foil caged and corked.

pours out an opaque blackish/brown colour with some ruby red highlights. a monstrous tan head supported by vigourous carbonation shows no sign of receding in my wine glass. lots of chunky lace. couldn't really look any better. dark roasted malts and spices such as anise and allspice...maybe some nutmeg in the nose. a resounding hoppiness, too. definitely a festive smelling beer. lots going on in the flavour department...dark chocolate and a caramel/nougat combination with some light cherry/raspberry nuances. spicing is really minimal but recognized as belgian like with a holiday twist. really hard to pinpoint the exact spices but it's clove like with a black licorice subtleness. fruity, tangy hoppiness provides some character and a touch of bitterness. a bit of yeastiness adds a delicate layer, also. pretty damn tasty and always balanced. the mouthfeel is pretty silky smooth for such a round and full bodied beer. drinkability is great for a holiday porter.

snagged this bottle for $5 and it delivered the x-mas goods. a perfect beer to start my x-mas eve imbibing. delicious!!

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Photo of adamette
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Live review. Poured from the 1 pint, 9.4 oz. synthetic corked and caged bottle, topped with gold foil. Purchased for $13.99 at Rozi's in Lakewood a few months ago. No observed "best by" date. "Holiday Ale brewed with spices" printed vertically on the side of the label. Poured into my Great Lakes Christmas Ale goblet.

A Having not checked the style here on BA before cracking this one, I was surprised and delighted to find a stout looking beer pouring into the glass with a dark brown, 4 inch head. Body is pitch black and lets no light through, even in front of direct light bulb. Very good lacing is left on the inside of the glass as well. 4.5

S Dark roast malt and an almost dopplebock like sweetness. Reminds me of a baltic porter but it smells a bit darker. I quite like this smell. 4.5

T/M Oh yes, this is a very good beer. Again, dark roast malt with a dopplebock or baltic porter like sweetness in a very creamy mouthfeel. The spices mentioned on the label are not all that prominent but there might be a peppery spice to it. 4.5 for both taste and feel.

D Good for the ABV and dark roast presence in this beer, two qualities that would normally drive the drinkability down for me. This bottle should be cracked and shared with a beer advocate near you. 3.5

Notes: Mikkeller remains one of the premier breweries in the world and this beer demostrates that skill. Any Baltic Porter fan or fan of stouts would love this beer.

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Fra Til (From To) from Mikkeller ApS
92 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.