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Hoppy Lovin' Christmas - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
Hoppy Lovin' ChristmasHoppy Lovin' Christmas

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

69 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 69
Hads: 216
Avg: 3.93
pDev: 10.18%
Wants: 6
Gots: 24 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ADZA on 11-29-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (274) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 69 | Hads: 216
Photo of Kenobi00
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

Took a shot in the dark on this. I hadn't heard of it before. I bought it in Carry Out Off Licence, Carlow, Ireland. Expensive here, but most beers are! 4.55€

Smooth and balanced mouthfeel, just right. A decent amount of citrus hop bitterness balanced well with the plum sweetess. Almost tastes like homemade lemonade, only tons better! Aftertaste is sweet plum with a subtle and balanced bitterness.

The packaging, although fun and Christmassy, is not to my taste, but for me it's all about the beer, which is fantastic.

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Photo of rdickey
4.47/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a deep, slightly cloudy gold into my Unibroue tulip. A nice fluffy white head dissipates slowly, leaving great lacing.

Smell: The nose is big, classic Pacific Northwest hops all the way – a perfect balance of pine and grapefruit.

Taste: Wow; I continue to be amazed by his beers. The hops from the nose continue, but they’re not overly bitter and in almost perfect balance with a strong yet unobtrusive malt backbone. As it warms up, the advertised ginger sneaks in towards the end, adding a spicy twist.

Mouthfeel: It’s a medium-bodied beer, but the best word to describe it in the mouth is “clean”. The finish is just about perfect.

Drinkability: Extremely high; it is a damn shame that there will be such a limited supply in the U.S.

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Photo of beergoot
4.45/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Solid gold body crowned with a thick, rocky, creamy white head; lots of sticky lacing on the glass. Finely balanced malt and hop aroma; caramel, biscuit; sourdough toast, honey; lemon. Smooth caramel and soft, roasted malt flavors with a great hop bitterness from the middle to finish. Smooth, creamy texture; medium-body; semi-dry finish.

A well-rounded, very fine IIPA. Malt and hops work well together and keep the alcohol presence well-hidden in the background.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a New Belgium goblet. No freshness date.

A- Pours a light amber color with a 3/4 inch off-white head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of surface foam. Resilient lacing trickles slowly down the glass leaving a thick jagged ring behind.

S- Absolutely heavenly aroma of pine, hops, candy and citrus. Smells like juicy fruit gum combined with a christmas tree candle. Nearly flawless.

T- The flavor is a bit more traditional with the pine being very apparent and the hops giving a moderate grassy bitterness. All is well-balanced and smooth for the ABV but doesn't come close to the magic of the aroma. By the way, not detecting any ginger anywhere though the label claims it's an ingredient.

M- Slightly sharp and oily from the hops and pine. Medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the lighter side.

O- I just can't get over how lovely the aroma of this beer is. That, along with all the other great attributes of this Mikkeller makes for a home run.

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Photo of JednoPivoProsim
4.4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 1 PT 9.4 FL OZ bottle into a pint glass. No discernible bottled on/best by date although plain white bottle cap has printed number 8901209. INDIA PALE ALE BREWED WITH GINGER AND PINE NEEDLES.

Appearance: Pours a pilsneresque golden body with a HUGE soap bubble doughy head. This one almost bubbled over. Ever so slightly cloudy. Consistent carbonation. Great lacing.

Smell: Immediate pine and hoppy aroma upon popping the bottle cap. Smells very fresh, but the pine aroma dominates. Is this coming from the standard DIPA hop dosage or the pine needles? I have yet to detect any ginger in the aroma.

Taste: Not as piney as the aroma would suggest. Still no ginger as far as I can tell. It tastes great, I'm just having a hard time identifying specific flavors as the mouthfeel is a little wacky. Wait, I do get some pine needle flavor and bready pale malts as this warms up little by little. Reminds me a bit of Dogfish Head brews that tend toward the experimental with experimental ingredients. Drinkability is great though for a 7.8% ABV beer. I always love me a pale ale or pale lager that drinks easy.

Mouthfeel: This is the only area where this beer falls down for me. Way too carbonated, almost soda-like, which masks a lot of the flavor in my opinion. Some increase in temperature and aeration helps out a lot. The other issue is an initial slight medicinal aftertaste.

Overall: Overall I really like this and I am so happy to have tried this. I received this 750ml as a gift for Christmas. I have read a fair amount here and there about Mikkeller and what fascinates is both the fact that this is a gypsy brewer, but also a foreign (specifically European) brewer that is making great American-style craft and experimental beers. My only other direct experience with gypsy brewing is having bought some Stillwater 750ml bottles as gifts for others, obviously a more "local" brewer however. As I final note as I put away the second half of this bottle, I recently reviewed my 110 or so BA beer reviews and the top 10+ or so are all pale ales and pale lagers. Give me bready malts and plenty of hops or give me death!

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Photo of RoamingGnome
4.36/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ah, Christmas morning....

Poured out of a 750 ml bottle into my new CBS snifter.

A) A light amber that is fairly cloudy. A massive white foamy head greets me like a beer commercial. Great retention and a crazy amount of sticky lacing. There is a dense foam island in the middle of my snifter.

S) Nice malt presence to go along with a predominantly piney and white grapefruit nose. The aroma was quite nice.

T) Nicely balanced... This is not too bitter and not too sweet. It tastes of grapefruit with a light dusting of sugar. There is some evegreen/juniper to this brew. A little bit of orange rind on the finish.

M) A medium body with about the same from a carbonation standpoint. This is pretty darn smooth and easy drinking. There is a slight tingle, which is perhaps the pine needle and ginger.

O) I though this was pretty much fantastic. I'm sorry I just had one bottle. I would highly recommend this brew. Merry Christmas....

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Photo of hosehead83
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a "bomber" bottle into a wine goblet.
Cloudy apricot in color, with a billowy head of off-white foam
Aroma-Big whiff of juicy citrus hops
Taste-Mango/tangerine/ruby red grapefruit with a subtle malt base for balance. Ginger and earthy Belgian spices add character and nuance. A citrus-rind bitterness follows to the end, reminding you that yes, this is an IPA after all. Very tasty and drinkable, a hop-head must-try.

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Photo of kmo1030
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

fairly hazed gold with a thick white rocky head. lots o' lace.
nose: lots a floral pininess to start. with a swirl ,the ginger comes out with an almost candied-like effect. whiffs of caramel malt here and there.. comes off resinous and sappy. a little alcohol is present.
the taste is alive with hop fruitiness: grapefruit, lemon, apricot, tropical fruit. pine ushers in a unique bitterness mid palate. ginger mingles throughout. comes off sweeter than it might initially seem, that's not to say it's a sweet beer though.
the mouthfeel is fairly middle of the road in body with prickly carbonation that may be applified by some of the flavor characteristics.
overall and great double IPA with some nice complexities. hopped up to be sure, but it doesn't ruin you as some of the genre do.

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Photo of Ratman197
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml boittle poured a clear tarnished gold with a lasting off white head. Aromas of biscuit, pine, lemon zest and light grapefruit. Mouthfeel was medium bodied and crisp with a dry finish. Flavors of biscuit,pine,grapefruit and lemon zest with a crisp dry bitter lingering citrus finish.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Slightly hazy golden-orange with a finger of frothy white head. Fades medium.

S - Grapefruit, orange, floral, pine hops, pine needles, caramel and biscuit malts, ginger, lemon zest.

T - Grapefruit, orange, citrus, pine, floral hops, some mildly resiny bitterness, caramel and biscuit malts, pine needles, lemon zest, ginger, hint of booze.

M - Medium-plus bodied moderate carbonation. Smooth with a dry, bitter, and sweet finish.

D - Nice hoppy IPA. Pine needles are a nice addition.

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Photo of flyingpig
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

330ml Bottle from BeersOfEurope website (£3.59):
Slightly hazy amber colour with a 2cm head that is white and looks to be of a thick, foamy texture that manages to hold pretty well and leave some lacing.

Hops some tropical fruits, citrus and what I think is a hint of pineapple too. There was also a slight hint of alcohol towards the end of the aroma but this was mostly masked by the refreshing fruits and the sweet malts that make up most of the nose.

Hoppy with citrus fruits, as I though some pineapple and a bit of grapefruit. There is some pine and a few sweet malts with a little bit of caramel sneaking in as well.

Smooth with a medium body and carbonation about the same, there is a few hints of alcohol but not as much as you'd expect from the abv. thanks to the good balance between flavours. The beer is sticky towards the end and has a dry, sweet finish.

A good change up from the usual, run-of-the-mill Christmas beers, this one still has the alcohol content but thankfully it also backs it up in the taste department as well.

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Photo of wl0307
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Coming in a slim, long-neck 330ml brown bottle; BB 06/03/2014, served mildly chilled in a straight tumbler.

A: pours a lightly cloudy bright amber colour, coming with a pillowy off-white froth and abundant fizziness.
S: the aroma is robust in its hoppiness full of citric and flowery hops, fresh hop resins, piney notes, while pear-ish fruit esters also abound, against a rather understated malt backbone. Not much to say here, but this is really pleasant and well executed, on the nose at least.
T: softly effervescent, the flavour is balanced, rounded, deliciously citrussy hoppy, mildly spicy and estery, altogether very relaxing and easily approachable, delivering a flavour typical of one’s good quality American IPA with an accent on the piney notes; finishing rather clean, well-rounded bitter, and dry-ish without any excessive sweetness. Only in the remote corner of the rear palate does a lightly spicy tinge of (supposedly) ginger emerge.
M&O: very soft on the carbonation, the body feels lighter than 7.8%abv. would lead one to expect, maybe due to the slightly higher attenuation level all in all. Without considering what ingredients are used in this beer, I find it an excellent hoppy and yet also beautifully balanced, dangerously quaffable brew, to be enjoyed in any season of a year!

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Photo of lnashsig
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1st beer to taste from my new Rare Beer club membership! IPA brewed with Ginger and Pine Needles. Poured from bottle into Brooklyn snifter glass. Pours a murky yellow color, really nice cloudy white head, great retention and lacing. Looks awesome. Smell- tropical sweet fruits like mango, pine (no surprise here), just a great smelling IPA. Taste- nice hoppy bitterness and piney resin, followed by a nice sweet tropical fruit malt. This is a really nice IPA. Maybe the best IPA from Mikkeller I have had.

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Photo of mick303
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured a bright orange gold colour, good finger or so of soapy white head. Good lacing and retention, nice carbonation. Looks good.

Smell is full of hops, juicy grapefruit, lot of fresh pine comes across. Some damp malt, damp towels and smoke? Some spiciness, pepper, ginger blends into the pine, some smoky charcoal. More towards the hops, but tons of interesting stuff here. Dry ginger spice as it warms.

Taste has a satisfying pine and grapefruit, orange, banana, medicinal hops. Malt is biscuity and moderate, providing a balance to the intense hops. A sort of gingery smokiness comes through that is mildly medicinal. A nice dry bitterness at the end, with a good deal of herbal and slightly medicinal hops.

Mouthfeel has a slick alcohol feel, with a strong carbonation, a pretty big body, but it drinks quite smoothly. Finish is dry. The alcohol doesn't really come through too much, and this has a good classic IIPA slick hoppy feel. Delich.

A really nice all-rounder IIPA, great flavours coming across and while it is perhaps a bit unbalanced, I quite enjoy it. A big bold beer, with the pine quite prominent and the ginger playing a background spicy role, all works quite well together. Agree that the carbonation could be decreased, it is a really enjoyable IPA that I hope to have again. Outstanding.

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Photo of russpowell
4.14/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber/honey with 3+ fingers of rocky cream colored head. Superior head retention & lacing

S: Grapefruit rind, light breadyness & pine, nose was a little subdued

T: Big citrus up front, grapefruit, orange peel lemons & then some piney & a bit bready sweetness & some ginger sweetness/spicyness. Tons of grapefruit & pine as this warms, some pineapple as well, a little bit of mineral dryness, a touch of honey sweetness. Big pine needle bite in the finish, grapefruit & little ginger snap, just a little aspirin leaking in at the end to make me not give this a 5.0

MF: Medium bodied, light carbonation, good balance to this

This lives up to its billing, very hoppy. I really enjoyed this one

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Photo of Dope
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Ridiculously huge off-white head atop a cloudy pale straw pour. Retention and lacing are excellent. Borderline 5.

S: Tons of pine and ginger right off the bat. Some nice grapefruit too. Bready malt.

T: Nice bitter grapefruit up front, turning very sweet afterward with a big punch from the pine at the end. As it warms the pine is very strong in the aftertaste but is tempered a bit by the sweetness. Interesting transition from bitter to sweet to bitter again. Not as much ginger as in the nose, just a hint in the aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied, nice carbonation. Quite drying.

O: Very underrated. Well balanced with complimentary flavors. I was pleasantly surprised considering this didn't have amazing reviews so far. If you don't like pine, skip it, but for the rest of us it's an excellent DIPA.

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Photo of rfgetz
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy hazed gold with cap if dense white froth. Strong notes of citrus and tropical fruits followed by whiffs of pine and ginger, lightly sweet malty presence. Strong tropical fruits like mango lead, citrus notes of orange and grapefruit follow, pine in equal amounts, solid ginger bite, malt is noticeable, lightly sweet bit not a major part. Medium bodied, dry finnish. Overall, a nice unique twist to the style.

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Photo of smcolw
4.11/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge (4/5 of glass) head. Steadily settles with a tight dome and plenty of large spots of lace. The liquid is hazy with a gold color

Relatively mild, floral hop aroma, particularly for this style.

Solid malt start, but a strong grapefruit-like bitterness takes over, leading to a long, long aftertaste. The body is full and the carbonation is below average. Classic full-flavored

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Photo of tempest
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Spuyten Duyvil. I'll admit I usually favor DIPAs that are all hops, but this is a well-crafted DIPA that makes the most of its barley. The hops are big, but a little old school in the sense that it's classic American grapefruit-citrus hops without super bright juice or floral notes. It sort of tastes like a stronger SN Celebration Ale. The malts bring a smooth, slightly bready taste, which by my palate put this closer to an American barleywine than any other style. It's a little thick for the strength, but it's also nice to have a sip-worthy beer that doesn't knock you out with alcohol after a second glass. Check it out if you can.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange-ish to yellow color with an off white head. In the aroma, citrus hops and a small candy sugar presence. In the taste, orange citrus to pine like hops. A small hop bite and a medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry citrus hop in the aftertaste. Big hops, especially citrus, very good!

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Photo of Converge
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle poured into a tulip.

A - Pours a medium copper hue with a ton of haze and a big billowing head of beige bubbles. Solid head retention and sticky clumps and bubbly lace, like most Mikkeller brews.

S - Smells terrific. The first thing that hits me is actually fruitiness, with apples, crisp and green, being at the forefront. Malty notes of caramel, sweet toffee, and bready crusts help balance a zippy hop profile comprised of light pine, citric rind, and slight tropical fruitiness. As it sits, it begins to smell more resinous, with hop oils and light booze being introduced. Very nice.

T - Follows the nose a great deal. Oily, piney hops are assertive and bitter, but there are some sweet fruity notes coming through, with green apple, orange, and grapefruit being detected. More malt balance than the average hop bomb, with sweet caramel malt, toffee, light nutty notes, and some toasty flavors too. Bitter like a DIPA but balanced like an APA. Something about the sweetened, easy drinking nature of this DIPA does strike me as distinctly festive as well.

M - Nice carbonation, with a smooth feel to it. Light to medium bodied, and not too thick or hot like some DIPAs tend to be. A nice, easy drinking mouthfeel that compliments the balanced profile really well.

D - A rather drinkable and balanced offering in a style that often comes across as being too abrasive for my palate. This DIPA brings big flavor, but also big balance, and even some unique touches (never tasted apple before in an IPA/DIPA). All around a tasty and festive DIPA I could see myself drinking again, but knowing Mikkeller it will probably disappear off shelves forever after a single round.

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Photo of crnipeter
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brewed with pine needles and ginger pours slightly hazed deep golden with a finger of dense white head that eventually shrinks to a stable cloth. Head sticks to the walls creating stable sheets of lace as the glass gets swirled.

Nose is dominated by sweet orange-like hops and yes, freshly picked pine needles whose aroma could be distinguished from usual piney-hopage. Malt combines with the ginger added to deliver some peppery-sweet spiciness.

Flavor is sweet with apricot-like fruitiness initially but the finish is abrupt and quite
clean, followed by mild bitterness with minor woodsy notes. Between both ends the palate is
governed by orange peel, ginger and pine.

Body is medium with quite soft carbonation.

Overall, sometimes experiments even succeed and this time Mikkeller hasn't wasted my time nor money. One of the better IPAs I've had in a while (330 ml, Best by 03-06-2014, into tulip).

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Photo of DCon
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a 1 PT 9.4 FL OZ bottle of this from Flamingo Bowl in St. Louis, MO for $17. Poured from the Red/Green labeled bottle w/ men feeding deer mistletoe (added the pic! Artwork by: Keith Shore) into a 16oz Tulip Glass. Does not have a Freshness Date but not worried b/c I know this just got released and is fresh.

Aroma- Citrus and pine come out HUGE in this one! The fruit and hops are perfect in here and also seems there is some sweetness hanging in the background.

Appearance- Pours a 3.5 finger head that lasts for an incredible amount of time! The body color is a medium orange/copper with a bit of hazing behind it. Leaves thick lacing behind.

Flavor- The initial flavor isn't hops actually... There is a slight ginger taste and then breaks into a pine needle/huge floral flavor. THEN the hops come in with light citrus and grassy with sweetness. Has a medium-high hop bitterness, so isn't anything to mess around with.

Mouthfeel- Medium-Full Bodied, Medium-High Carbonation, Smooth, and has a good fruity/sweet finish. Bit of hops are left as well.

Overall Impression- What a perfect holiday gift to a friend or family! This 2X IPA is packed with an awesome array of character. Starts with ginger, nice hops, pine needle definitely, and then finishes sweet but still is packed with a punch. Tough to turn those on to this brew if not a fan of hops, but they'll get used to it! Serve it in a fancy glass, present to bottle appropriately, and they will be won over immediately. "Oh, maybe hops ARE a nice ingredient in beer!".

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased from Plonk in Canberra.

Pours a hazed golden orange hue, closer to orange in the thick parts of the glass, closer to gold in the slimmer. Head is a frothy, extravagant monstrosity, coming closer to a big Belgian ale in size and volume. Lacing, as it collapses, is intricate: it looks like Hindi script. Body is fluid. Looks pretty good.

Nose is mildly fruity, but with some earthier deeper tones. Notes of rosewater, banana and crushed bitter herbs come through strongly, along with hints of overripe peach and white chocolate. It's an oddly fatty aroma: smelling sweet and thoroughly bad for you.

Taste has similar themes to the nose. There is a general sense of "yes, this is an IPA, but yes, it's also weird. By the way, no, you're probably not going to pick up what's so weird about it". More of those banana tones come through, giving almost a hefe estery character to the brew, along with a chalky bitterness, and a really, really long aftertaste that is spread and smeared along the length of the palate, leaving bitter herbs and brusque bush pepper. For all this, it doesn't feel harsh, and the feel probably helps with this: despite looking pretty light and liquid, it sticks to the palate and caresses it, while the flavour bombards it from above.

Overall, I'm again impressed with what Mikkeller can do with a style they've done so much with already. I always sit down with a beer like this and the sense of "Oh, *another* IPA from Mikkeller, what could possibly be different?". But they always provide a different and nuanced variation on the theme. And that's a mighty difficult thing to do.

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Photo of barczar
4.02/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Resiny, lightly citrusy and piney hops and deeply nutty, sweet caramel malt in the aroma. Maltier than expected. Flavor is very sweet and toffee-centric, with resiny and modestly citrusy notes. The carbonation is a bit high. Lightens up the heaviness of the malt dominance. I like it, but it's more malt forward than expected.

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Hoppy Lovin' Christmas from Mikkeller ApS
88 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.