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Nissefar - HaandBryggeriet

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

97 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 97
Hads: 163
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 14.25%
Wants: 7
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
HaandBryggeriet visit their website

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sigmund on 06-17-2007

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (38) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 97 | Hads: 163
Photo of YankChef
3.87/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml pour into sam smith pint glass

appearance: Black with ruby tints on the edges not terribly thick in appearance, nice creamy light brown head with some sticky lacing

aroma: chocolate and coffee, a bit boozy as well, some black peppercorn, a bit of creamy milky ness in the aroma as well

taste: upfront a bit of sourness which i found surprising, sort of a currant cherry thing going on then fades to roastiness and more dark fruit flavors, the lingering finish is bitter espresso what a roller coaster... then on the finish after that its kinda like a charleston chew... carbonation is relatively low but i think that suits this beer

overall - interesting as always i love haand... this may bot be as good as the flemish sour but still worth a a try especially at half off like i got it for :]

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.87/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood I for Winterfest, 2010 Vintage,

A: Pours practically black with a light off-white head. Some thick lace.

S: Some notes of spice, dark chocolate and sugar, hint of gingerbread.

T: Lots of dark chocolate flavour, never real roasty, porter like. Light hints of spice and floral hops, but a malt dominated brew.

M: Medium-bodied, certainly thins out a bit in the finish, soft carbonation.

O: A lower alcohol old ale, but it works fine. Good flavours, quite the enjoyable effort.

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Photo of froghop
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours black with a very large khaki head that stays around throughout, and some lacing.

smell is of dark fruit, cocoa, some spice, and a little wild yeast.

taste is of dark fruit, cocoa, spice, a little pepper, some smoke, malt, and a few hops, ends somewhat dry.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

bottle - served up at recent scandanavian tasting at brasserie v

appearance: generous pour in a belgian tulip - creamy dark mocha body, light chocolate froth

smell: rich chocolate, sour cherry, woody, caramel, brown sugar, raisin

taste: Interesting porter - rich chocolate is met immediately with a tart cherry presence, oak, caramel, raisin. not nearly as extreme as the NG old english porter, but heading in that direction

mouthfeel: medium-thin body, light to moderate

drinkability: ok

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Photo of Rifugium
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Teresa's, Wayne, PA

This is not a porter, but rather an old ale, and it was labelled as such on the beer menu at Teresa's.

Served in a tulip glass, this beer poured a dark brown with a small tan head. Sweet, malty aroma, hints of chocolate, dark fruit, and spice. Taste of dark malts, followed instantly by a huge licorice profile, chocolate chips, and notes of spice and a slightly syrupy booziness in the background. Interesting and tasty. On the heavier side of medium-bodied, and quite drinkable. Definitely worth revisiting.

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Photo of avalon07
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a black color and a thick texture. There was an inch of tan-colored, foamy/fizzy, somewhat long-lasting head. Not much lacing to speak of.

S: A subdued aroma of dark fruit, chocolate, and coffee.

T: Tasted of chocolate, coffee, raisins, and perhaps a little bit of licorice. A nicely done flavor.

M: An OK amount of carbonation with a slightly slick finish. Medium-bodied.

D: A solidly made, drinkable porter.

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Photo of beergoot
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: opaque deep, dark brown, almost black body with a thick, creamy tan head

Smell: cherries and chicory; raisins; smoked peat

Taste: dark, roasted malts with chocolate. Nuttiness. Very noticeable alcohol warmth throughout. Tangy bitterness.

Mouthfeel: smooth maltiness with medium-heavy body.

Overall: after cleaning up the spillage from the bottle spewing upon opening (it wasn't shaken and was opened at around 55F), I proceeded to sample this bad boy. Definitely a strong beer with a decent balance between the complex flavors and the alcohol content. I don't know if this particular bottle was over-primed, but ignoring the 'exploding' bottle opening fiasco, this is a mighty tasty northern European brew.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.82/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew was served from the tap at Rattle N’ Hum in New York, NY. It arrived in a standard pint glass and gave a dark black coloring. There was no head to be seen, as the glass was full to the top, but rings of medium brown bubbles floated around the top. As the beer disappeared spots of lacing were left around the glass. Carbonation appeared average, and no sediment was noted. The aroma reminded us of a standard American coffee stout. The malts were deep, with a hint of smoke and roast. There was sweetness of caramel and cream, and a cutting metallic note. As we sipped, the flavoring began with sugary sweetness. This floated about a sea of porter-dark malts, mild vanilla, and bright lactic sourness. The middle moved forward, with the sweetness moving to honey, and the malts taking it to a step deeper. The smoke from the nose began here, which actually helped to pull things together. We finished with chemical phenols, more of those crisp and dark malts, and more of a general toasty flavor of fire. The aftertaste breathed of thick smoke, bittering grain, and souring alcohol, which was not very apparent until now. The body was light and the carbonation was medium. The feel to each sip was cooling and lightly coating, with faint metallic slickness. There is light cream and pop, but nothing spectacular. The abv was standard, and the beer drank easily.

Overall, what we found to be most enjoyable about this brew was the smoke. At first it was light and souring, making for a cleaner finish, but by the end it became an integral component of the beer’s complexity. Otherwise, this guy is fairly simple, staying true to style, except for a few points when it veered onto the pathway of the porters.

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Photo of shleepy
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Black, or at least very dark brown. Thick brown-ish head with good retention.
S: Lots of caramel, roastiness; hints of spices.
T: Lots of coffee flavor, in addition to the caramel/roastiness/spices.
M: Surprisingly not too heavy. Smooth texture and medium body for the style.
O: A balanced holiday ale. 4

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Photo of Richardberg
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glasses. Opaque, cloudy, dark brown with a huge head of tan foam. Slightly toasty malts, sour fruit, oak. Interesting combo, not quite what I expected -- not in a bad way, just not sure the flavor combo really works, especially when you put an elf on the label.

Medium bodied feel, mild carbonation, nice & creamy/smooth, didn't linger on the tongue as long as I'd like though. Alcohol bite was about right for a decently crafted 7% -- if you hid it completely, you wouldn't keep Santa warm, after all.

Enjoyed this beer but not for the expected reasons...will search elsewhere for true winter ale satisfaction.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a half finger of tan head on a dark brown body with lots of sediment floating around.
The aroma is mild chocolate, cinnamon, earth, and Christmas.
The taste has holiday spice, roasted malt, and chocolate. Nice.
The texture is soft and smooth.
Nice and enjoyable.

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Photo of sprucetip
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes. Batch 163, June 08. Poured murky dark brown, but with lots of activity on top. Fizzy tan head dissipates almost immediately. No lacing. Big yeast chunks in bottom of the glass when finished.

Roasty, burnt, and sour/tart influences blending uniquely with some malty sweetness. Floral hops struggle to be noticed.

Prominent but not overly dominant farmhouse type tart sourness leads. Some smoky roasty flavors underneath add a layer of complexity. Some fruitiness accompanies the sour tartness. Very mild bitterness and faintly noticeable hops.

Fizzy bite, medium body but with thinnish sensation. Light viscosity and gentle warming.

I was way stoked to find this in my remote town of 800 in SE Alaska, but had no idea what to expect, but this certainly wasn't it. I didn't know until I went to write this review that it was labeled an American Porter. I'm not exactly sure what category I would place it in, but not that one. I enjoyed it more and more as I nursed the sample, but wasn't thrilled upon first sip. I think the most defining feature of this is the moderate but undeniable tart sourness character that has me thinking "farmhouse."

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Photo of drpimento
3.76/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Odd pour- Looked like it was going to be flat with only some big soap bubbles at first. After the pour the beer started cascading like Guinness and did have a very fine creamy small tan head with no lace. Maybe an error in bottle conditoning if they did that? Color is an opaque brownish black with red highlights. Aroma is excellent with roast malt cocoa coffee pine fruit eucalyptus. Flavor doesn't have quite so much going on but similar and still very good. Body isn't bad but the flatness doesn't help. Finish is like flavor. Sure want to try another that's properly carbonated.

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Photo of peabody
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a really dark black liquid with three to four fingers of very tan creamy suds.
Smell is fig and sour cherry/oak wood.
Taste is coffee and toasted malts with a fruity sourness for just one second before going back to slight sugar and burnt malt.
Mouthfeel is a little weak. Not much going on here.
Drinkability is pretty good but the watery feel of this brew makes it just so-so.

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Photo of SABERG
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 2010 bottle into a modified tulip glass, across the table from my beautiful brunette wife.

A - Huge, towering head, took time to settle down. Color deep mahoghony. Lacing forever.

S - Caramel, smoke, figs, some tobacco the good kind. Light booze and warm leather.

T - Smoked malts, hints of spice, snap near the end. Really pleasnt as it warms.

M - A little light, clearly balanced. finish is medium and happily not sickly sweet.

O - As a winter, holiday style the balance was spot on, not to spiced, oily etc. I applaud the group. Well done.

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Photo of asabreed
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 169. Bewed August 08th, Best before August 10th.

16.9 oz. bottle into a 12. Samuel Smith nonic.

Appearance: Very much appearing like a Guinness: seemingly opaque but really dark, dark amber. A frothy, concentrated-looking head sits a top and leaves some big raindrops of lacing.

Smell: Interesting notes between roasted, sour, and chocolate. Seems more like a Belgian Porter to me here. This is certainly much thinner and less dark than many American Porters, so the roasted and charred are present, but balanced, and fairly minimum. Sour cherries and farmhouse yeast mix with the lighter yet charred chocolate.

Taste: Initially huge sourness, then mellowing into the Porter-like charred nature, coming into some fruit esters, more sourness, and finishes slightly and interestingly sour and bitter, with the chocolate, sourness, and mild fruit overtones, more like cherries or sour apples.

Mouthfeel: For an American Porter, this would be on the thinner side, though it's certainly a complex brew. A little more watery than I'd have liked, with carbonation nearly coming at the very end, oddly enough, and that's it. However, the lack of carbonation does enhance the ability to get more flavor at that point, so it's not lose-lose.

Drinkability: Solid and interesting, and though I would try it again, the price and limited availability make me want to go after some more of their other beers instead.

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Photo of metter98
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer poured jet black in color with a tan head so massive that it filled half the height of the mug, which took a long time to settle down. It has very good head retention properties.
S: There are aromas of earthy hops, lightly roasted dark malts and spices in the nose along with some hints of chocolate.
T: The taste is rather complex and has flavors of bittersweet chocolate, chicory, coffee beans, dark fruits and spices. The hops contribute a slight amount of bitterness to the overall taste.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate with a minimal amount of carbonation. There's a moderate amount of dryness, which becomes more prominent in the finish. The alcohol also contributes a slight amount of warming sensations.
D: The beer isn't that difficult to drink, except that the head was so large that it took several pours into a large mug to empty the bottle. The amount of spices in this beer definitely makes it one that needs to be sipped.

Note: Batch 163, Bottled June 2008

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Photo of Bung
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Picked up at Greens in Columbia.
Poured deep brown with a huge light tan head. Head dissappated quick enough though to a layer.

Toasted malt, chocolate, then some raisin and cherries. Some slightly strange fruitiness going on. Finishes a tad dry and some lactose like qualities. Not quite sure what to make of that.

A bit thin, flows down easy, but there just isn't enough body to hold this one together. $8 for the 500ml? will probably pass on this again.

Probably my least favorite that I've had from HaandBryggeriet, which is all right since the rest have been outstanding.

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Photo of ToasterChef
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big chocolately head with filmy bubbles. Opaque brown liquid. Nice chocolate aroma. Some winter spices and pine in the nose as well. Chocolate sweetness, some alcohol and a finish that reminds me of prune juice. This is a slick, full bodied beer that has low carbonation and an oily coat. It drinks very well. This bottle is about two years old; I imagine that a fresh one would be very impressive.

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Photo of Vengeance526
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown color with a small tan head that quickly fades away and leaves light traces of sticky tan lacing.

Interesting aroma that starts off sweet with chocolate and caramel, then turns to sour cherries in the back.

Taste again reveals a strange mix of sweet and sour flavors. A mild hint of chocolate upfront quickly gives way to sour cherries and plums. Some smoky flavors come out next, all leading to a finish that again goes back to the subtle sweetness of chocolate and caramel. Although a mild sweetness seems to go in and out throughout each sip, the sour flavors are much more noticeable overall. I don't really know what to make of it...its not really that bad, but damn is it weird.

Light to medium body, feels a little thin. This one has its moments, but the taste is just too strange for me to want more. Not really sure what makes this a Christmas beer, and I don't think it was worth it. Interesting to try but I won't be revisiting this.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

HaandBryggeriet Nissefar. Batch 169. Brewed Aug 08, Best Bef. Aug 10. Whuh, oh,

Dark brown body, or is it black? Slim dark brown head.

Aroma: bourbon, vanilla, maple. Whatever this is, it's whiskey barrel-aged, for sure. Nothing is really given away on the label, except "Norwegian holiday beer" and lots of stuff about gnomes.

Taste: Whiskey flavor is huge initially in the mouthfeel, sweet, slick, ...but lacking in body, could use a ton more malt in here. I'm still struggling to figure out exactly what the base beer is, or if there's any other flavoring involved.

Hmmm, is the oldness of the ale giving way, has it lost so much in the 3 months that have passed since it's expiration. But, it's still got plenty of flavor, just has me wondering what else was going on. It's still tasty and spicy, and delicious.

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Photo of WesWes
3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a deep, dark black color with a thick, rocky tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a wonderful black patent and chocolate malt scent that's dry and earthy with just a hint of sweetness. The taste is decent. It has a smooth, yet almost soda like feel. It's thick with loads of malt complexity. There is a weird tangy, bitterness to it. The mouthfeel is just above average. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. I just can't get over the thick, almost flat beer aspect. This is an interesting beer. The malt bill seems right on and the appearance rocks, but the mouthfeel really ruins it for me.

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Photo of dpnelson1978
3.62/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.
Original tasting: 12/31/2009

500cl. bottle into glass pint.

$7.99 / ea.

S: Ripe red fruit, raisins, and a dark roasted aroma. Smells like a Belgian Dark Ale.

A: Opaque dark brown body with a creamy tan medium head of moderate retention. Some minor lacing and a thin broken cover. Legs.

T: Slightly sour, but balanced taste. Bitter chocolate and coffee notes. Dark roasted malt backbone. No hop character to speak of. Bit of a sour aftertaste.

M: Light body, light carbonation. Smooth and somewhat creamy.

D: Light beer and deceptively high in alcohol. This brew has a unique taste that, while interesting, is not something I would drink in large amounts.

O: Respectable brew with an interesting taste that makes for good conversation, but not "my thing".

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Photo of zaphodchak
3.59/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Batch 307, 07.09.10

Uncontrollable full hand of dark tan head. Creamy on top, but sudsy in the middle. Deep brown body.

Kinda metallic smelling with some orange, maybe spice. Not good.

Taste, on the other hand, is a different story. The orange tang, but riding on something that's between an RIS and a dunkel lager. Which you would think would just be a stout, but it's not. Alt is not actually the first thing that comes to mind. There's coffee and some spice, cinnamon maybe, and orange (rindy) and a bit of chocolate. Much nicer than the smell.

Mouthfeel is incredibly smooth, not too foamy in spite of the massive frothing on the pour.

If it weren't for the smell, this would be great. As it is, it's still pretty good.

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Photo of Zorro
3.59/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy brown colored ale with next to no head.

Smells sweet and spicy with caramel and figs with some allspice and spruce. Chocolate and cherry brandy complete the scent.

Starts out mildly sweet with a strong charred barley flavor. Toasted bread and chocolate. Some spruce appears from behind the hefty patent malt flavor and that is about it for taste.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall an OK beer but not one I will drink again.

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Nissefar from HaandBryggeriet
86 out of 100 based on 97 ratings.