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Arctic Circle Ale - Malmgårdin Panimo

Not Rated.
Arctic Circle AleArctic Circle Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

92 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 92
Reviews: 62
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 9.34%
Wants: 24
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Malmgårdin Panimo visit their website
Finland

Style | ABV
Sahti |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: feloniousmonk on 03-03-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 92 | Reviews: 62 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bendurgin
Bendurgin

Maine

3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This one is a Christmas gift from Andy. Poured into a pint glass. This one pours a dark muddy brown color with about a finger of rocky beige head.

Pleasant to smell with sweet toffee and molasses aromas. Caramelized sugars in the aroma with a dark bready character to round it out. A pungent dark fruit aroma lingers in the background. Malty here with a dark German bread character to it. Juniper flavors with other berries and the likes of plumbs come through. The flavor losses the sweetness that the aroma has.

Medium body here and this is a mostly still beer. Very light carbonation is noticeable on the finish. A lot going on here. This is also my first of the style. This is enjoyable but I don't see how often I would want to drink something to this nature. Good for a change of pace, and I wouldn't mind sampling some other Sahtis.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2011 04:02:35 | More by Bendurgin
Photo of GRG1313
GRG1313

California

3/5  rDev -24.2%

12-22-2011 09:17:19 | More by GRG1313
Photo of Ralphs66
Ralphs66

New York

3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pouring out like a still beer....hmmmm, wondering if there's a problem. No head at all. Got some molasses on the nose, and of all things, Brennivin (the black death national drink of Iceland). yeah, go figure. I like the flavor, but it seems muted. My second Sahti; DFH being the first and that beer was friggin over the top. I'm going to let it warm a bit and see what happens. Well, not alot of change after waiting 10 minutes or so. It's decent, and I'm enjoying it, but if I find yet another Sahti to try, I'll move on. No need to come back to this one.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2011 00:37:10 | More by Ralphs66
Photo of kaelingirl
kaelingirl

Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +26.3%

12-05-2011 17:12:58 | More by kaelingirl
Photo of Cavery
Cavery

California

5/5  rDev +26.3%

11-21-2011 02:44:44 | More by Cavery
Photo of Gmann
Gmann

New York

3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy dark amber color with a small tight off white head that settles into a frothy ring.

The aroma is sweet with dark fruit. Lots of prune and raisin, reminds me of an old ale. Some toffee and caramel. Very sweet.

The taste is sweet, though not as sweet as the aroma. Lots of raisins and grapes, sweet toffee malt. I don't get a lot of twiggy juniper. Not sure if this is an old sample but the juniper faded, its not there. Perhaps a light sour berry from the juniper. Reminds me more of a lightly spiced old ale.

The feel is light to moderate with fizzy carbonation. Sweet on the palate but enough juniper to give a slight bitter balance. Drinks light and easy.

Definitely not as herbal and raw as the other that I have had. Seems more like a wheat old ale. Needs more juniper at a minimum.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 02:30:03 | More by Gmann
Photo of TheBeerCarl
TheBeerCarl

Idaho

4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: The head is a very thin head when I first poured but when i emptied the rest of the bottle into the glass I got a nice rich and thick head that was light yellowish brown in color. The head lingers for quite a bit which is nice. The body of the beer is kind of hard to describe but it has a dark opaque rosy brown color to it.

Smell: Plum and raisin are the major characters I smell at first with hints of lingering earthiness and a little bit of heat.

Taste: The juniper twigs are very pronounced on the palette with earthiness and bitterness up front and a nice lingering malty sweetness with a hint of juniper. A well balanced flavor profile for the ingredients.

Mouthfeel: A very smooth mouthfeel with hardly any palpable carbonation except for a last minute bite to the tip of the tongue.

This is my first Sahti style ale but it was quite enjoyable. The flavor profiles described in the style guidelines seem to be all present in this ale. I would have like the juniper to come out a little more but other than that this beer was really good.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2011 00:42:21 | More by TheBeerCarl
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.78/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At the time of this review, this is the #1!!! Sahti on the beeradvocate best of list, decent little beer. My quest is asymptotically approaching completion.

Beer is darker than expected but clear with a thin off white head of small bubbles, some lacing, low carbonation, low retention.

Aroma is mildly sweet with some interesting spice.

Beer is nice overall. Interesting, sweet up front, a little dry on the back, almost a peat quality to it, earthiness, mild spice. A good little beer, I'd like to try it again some day.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2011 04:43:55 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to TurdFurgison for picking up this bottle in Chicago at West Lakeview for me. Served in a Val-Dieu chalice.

Poured a fairly-dart brown with a thin light tan head that receded quickly without leaving too much lacing. The nose carried a bit of juniper and darker malts, plus a faint herbal quality. Flavor has a touch of roast and some darkened malt plus juniper and miscellaneous spicing. Not over the top in any direction. Light-medium body with good carbonation and a semi-dry finish. Pretty nice brew.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2011 10:49:14 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of Duff27
Duff27

Illinois

4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Half inch, off-white bubbly head. Beer is a brown color. Relatively well kept head retention, good lacing.

S- Brown sugar smelling. Some cola aspects.

T- Very sweet and flavorful. Juniper, spices...dark syrup notes.

M- Well carbonated, crisp on the tongue. Medium mouthfeel, slightly syrupy.

D/O- Rated to style. After trying Arctic Circle Ale, it's no wonder it's (currently) the number one rated sahti in the world. This was my only "want" on BA for the longest time and I just stumbled upon it at a Binny's last weekend!

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2011 18:43:39 | More by Duff27
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased at West Lakeview Liquors. Served in a Surly pint glass. No freshness date, but without hops this doesn't worry me.

A - Small tan foam settles to a near-complete cap and thin collar of bubbles. Negligible lacing. Body is a hazy cola brown color with some ruby highlights.

S - Smells very sweet - plenty of caramel, lightly burnt sugars, and berry flavors. There's some dough and cake character present too, as well as a hint of chocolate and rye malt. Medicinal notes are quite understated, with juniper well in the periphery. Quite barleywine-esque.

T - Taste is less sweet, with more burnt malt and wood character. Also loses much of the depth found in the aroma. I don't get a ton of juniper - this mostly tastes like a barleywine with rye. The bitterness in the finish is a bit more medicinal than hoppy, so I guess that's what makes this a Sahti.

M - Some alcohol warmth that seems a bit excessive for only 7.3% - is this a "winter warmer"? Chewy and viscous full body. Active but soft carbonation. Sticky and lightly tannic in the finish. Drinks like a much bigger beer.

D - It seems like every "Sahti" I have is quite different, and this one is no exception. Quite enjoyable, although the 500ml bottle would probably be best split between two people. If you like rye-wines give this one a shot. I appreciate the delicate touch with the juniper too.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2011 03:15:18 | More by MasterSki
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer

Georgia

4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm a fan of juniper, and therefore of Sahti. Not a lot of examples around, so it's nice to find one I haven't tried. This one is billed as having been brewed with juniper branches. Pours a slightly murky brown with a medium head that fades to a thin cap. Smells malty, but with a delicate juniper note. The taste is nice. Very malty, and with a little bit of a vinous, fruity note- perhaps prunes, and a nice note of juniper. Clean and light in the mouth. Not the resinous explosion of juniper I'm looking for, but very pleasant nonetheless, and it is billed as an "Arctic Ale" rather than as a traditional Sahti.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2011 02:15:44 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

3.3/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours out as a redish looking ale with some darker brown shadows in it. The lacing is pretty good. The smell is very herbal, and has a little bit of an earthy booze aroma too. The taste to me seemed a lot more like a barley wine than anything else to me. The mouthfeel was a little thick but not oily. The overall take I have on this is that it really wasn't what I thought it was going to be. Glad I tried it but found it to be a little too much for me.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2011 21:38:07 | More by Knapp85
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up during a trip to Baton Rouge. Not my first Sahti, but my first Sahti that was brewed in Finland. Excited to try this one, as it is also my first beer from Finland.

The beer pours a dark brown-orange color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the caramel and toffee malt. I don't get the juniper in the aroma. That being said, the juniper is present in the flavor. I also get some smoked malt and and toffee, as well as a little bit of chocolate. All of the flavors meld well together and make an enjoyable beer. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 22:56:17 | More by Mora2000
Photo of Offa
Offa

California

3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep red-brown, medium big pale tan head, slowly shrinks to foamy thin top & ring, a little lace.

Aroma is rich toasted bread, lightly caramelized, hints of woody herbal character, some dried fruits, light yeastiness, but all a bit subdued and vague in the face of the caramelized bread.

Taste is spicy fruits with caramlised rich toast & raisin, woody-spicy bitterness with some balancing sweetness. The Spicy-woody bitterness just dominating the finish and a bit too sharp and lingering. Though fairly full-bodied with some good flavour, it ends up being almost one-dimensional, dominated by a fairly flat caramelised toast character with woody-spicy bitterness. It’s good but not great and is less unique in character than I’d expected.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2011 21:34:59 | More by Offa
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

Washington

3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A unique and complex perfumey ale.

Nice dark amber in the glass with a small head but very good lacing as you sip and swirl. Clear, not turbid as the traditional style suggests. Some forest aromas, pine and dry grass. Malty with some definite sweetness and well-bodied. Rye is quite evident with the dry and grainy flavors. Some kind of odd fruit makes me think of dried jujubes. Or hibuscus tea. Drawback is the overly bitter and very long aftertaste of either the hops or unrelieved pitchy boughs.

If you like rye beers or odd flavors, this one is both intriguing and well made. I'm at a loss for words to describe how odd it is, but thoroughly drinkable. It would be worth comparing with other juniper flavored beers. I definitely want to try this again, and I'll be looking to see if there are any others in this style out there.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2011 04:23:11 | More by mactrail
Photo of capeannbass36
capeannbass36

Massachusetts

3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured hard into a Duvel tulip.
Dirty purple brown in color. Cloudy, hazy.
Off white 3/4 inch head that disappeared fairly fast.

S- Whiff of juniper upon opening. Fruity.

T- Sweet malt and juniper.

M- Medium body. Smooth. Decent carbonation.

O- A very unique taste. Really cannot compare it to any other beer that I have tried. Might be able to drink two at one sitting.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2011 17:40:58 | More by capeannbass36
Photo of SolomonGrundy
SolomonGrundy

California

3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Go Packers...Go Bears...Go somebody!!!

Pours a hazy, deep rusty amber. Lightly carbonated. A short finger of head. Slight lacing. Deep aromas of orange peel, cinnamon, some piney notes. Very nice. Very sweet notes in there too, like honey. Flavor is big and robust, I get some cinnamon. Some alcohol (all through the drink, too), and it's only 7.3% ABV. Some other things in there too: caramel malt, some of the aforementioned orange peel. Finish has a nice, hoppy bitterness, but that may be the juniper used in the brewing process also. Not nearly as sweet as I thought it might be, either. Decent beer. $8.99/500ml bottle, though, so it's not cheap. Decent but I probably wouldn't buy it again.

What I like most: The nice, robust and uniquer flavor profile.

What I like least: The price and slightly astringent flavors.

Verdict: decent and unique, but a little pricey.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2011 20:59:37 | More by SolomonGrundy
Photo of avalon07
avalon07

South Carolina

4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a rust color with a thick, cloudy consistency. There was an inch of foamy, long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A very sharp, herbal smell, with some hints of caramel.

T: Tasted of caramel, malt, that herbal quality (which I assume is the juniper), and a slight hoppy presence. An interesting take on the Sahti. It almost has some qualities of a barleywine.

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

D: This is a solidly made, drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2011 15:00:15 | More by avalon07
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is cloudy reddish brown in color and poured with a finger high dense off white head that slowly died down and never completely faded away. A slight amount of carbonation is visible.
S: There are aromas of caramel, malty sweetness and toffee in the nose along with notes of juniper.
T: The juniper stands out but these are well incorporated into the overall taste, which also seems to have a bit of spicy and woody flavors in the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied and very smooth on the palate with a moderate to high amount of carbonation. There is a slight amount of dryness in the finish.
D: The beer is very drinkable for the style because the juniper flavors do not overwhelm the palate.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2011 15:16:14 | More by metter98
Photo of 100floods
100floods

California

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

Pours a creamy brown with a tan head that turns into lace. Rich yeast, herbal aroma. Very close to a Belgian brown ale, sweet, a little gummy. The juniper twigs come through nicely as well. Very pleasant aroma. Pretty full body, very smooth. The juniper twigs really come through in the flavor, but it's definitely not a bad thing. It's almost a nice replacement of the hops, which you can hardly taste. There's a noticeable sour taste, but it comes second to the juniper as if to compliment it, very nice. It almost create its own herbal bitterness. This beer is nice because it's not a Belgian beer, but has elements of one. I definitely like this brew a lot. The Scandinavians definitely have a way with herbal drinks. Very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2010 02:30:32 | More by 100floods
Photo of crossovert
crossovert

Illinois

4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml brown bottle with white plastic.

It pours a lot nicer than the other Finnish sahti, Kataja, that I have had. It is a deep reddish brown with a big off-white head. The head sticks around for a bit and it recedes with some nice lacing.

The smell is a lot like a Munich dunkel, different form other sahti's I have had. It has a nice chocolatey dark malt presence. The juniper is there as well.

The taste is a little bit similar to the other sahti's, but again it reminds me a ton of a Munich dunkel. It ahs that immense drinkability to it, though it is 7.3%. There is an underlying bitterness, perhaps form the juniper twigs that is welcome. There is so much chocolate and caramel in there that just tastes really great, like a northwoods imperial Munich dunkel.

If you can find this try it, it is awesome.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2010 00:57:54 | More by crossovert
Photo of SilentSabre
SilentSabre

North Dakota

3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This poured up a lovely dark, reddish bronze colour with a two finger thick cookie dough coloured head with a nice, thick, soapy froth on top. Very nice!

Smell is mostly sweet, toasted malts, a bit of a maple syrup smell, some cooked fruit, an earthy aroma, and perhaps a light touch of alcohol ( which seems strange coming from something that's only 7,3%).

The flavour almost seems to be sweet and bitter simultaneously with the maple syrup in the smell a bit more pronounced in the flavour followed by a noticeable shift toward bitter toward the finish, and a bit of the juniper noticeable a second or two after you swallow. This is a rather bizarre brew, for sure. Very good, but odd, nevertheless.

Mouthfeel is much heavier than I was prepared for, but I enjoy that. Especially on a chilly, rainy night such as this. I have seen this before and merely passed by it. I'm very glad I chose to try it out; while definitely strange, I really enjoyed this one!

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2010 00:51:00 | More by SilentSabre
Photo of mj001jk
mj001jk

California

4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark amber with a thin hazel-colored foam.

Aromas are reminiscent of some Belgian ales from the past, sweet molasses, spicy wood and herbs with red apple sauce dominating the olfactory sense. Very appealing...

Initial mouthfeel is fresh and lively, dry yet satisfyingly rich in flavors. Again, a slightly sour Flanders red ale comes to mind when comparing this to anything I've had before. An incense-like tannic sensation on top of a minor alcohol burn on the finish reveals the juniper clearly, but not in any intrusive way.

Everything is balanced perfectly for me and it goes down way too smooth considering the 7.9% ABV.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2010 05:36:00 | More by mj001jk
Photo of laituegonflable
laituegonflable

Australia

4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep earthy red colour, dark brown but with cuprous tinge around the edge. Head is ochre and consists of large bubbles, thin crown retaining. Lace is disappointing, but notwithstanding, looks like a nice sweet, heavy beer.

Smell is sweet and quite boozey. Very like a fortified wine, with dark raisins and cherry hints. Lots of molasses and just that smell of toasted sugar. Yes, very pleasant indeed; the right amount of sweetness for a strong, sweet beer without going overboard.

Taste is also quite sweet. Strong and syrupy with molasses, brown sugar and caramel, and a strong hit of vanilla beans. Yeah, very sweet but with a good cocoa hit towards the back as well, and overall a very dry palate and feel. Syrupy on the front, but almost grainy and dessicated on the back. Good flavours though, sweet and nutty and a nice boozey hit as well. Good vibe to it.

Yeah, heavy, but it has all the right flavours and in good proportions. An interesting style to which I have no comparison point, but it's a nice beer anyway.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2010 03:14:37 | More by laituegonflable
Arctic Circle Ale from Malmgårdin Panimo
88 out of 100 based on 92 ratings.