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Baladin Nora - Birrificio Le Baladin

Not Rated.
Baladin NoraBaladin Nora

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

284 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 284
Reviews: 131
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 11.72%
Wants: 63
Gots: 30 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Birrificio Le Baladin visit their website
Italy

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-01-2002

This Egyptian inspired brew is spiced with ginger, myrrh, and orange peel ... very complex.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 284 | Reviews: 131
Reviews by JRed:
Photo of JRed
3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 Edition: Bright sparkly golden in body with white bubbly head that stays. Smells of tart cider, apple pie but without the crust, little citrus. Tastes cider-like: apple pie mush, tart, sour notes, light cinnamon pear. Light in body with prickly carbonation.

More User Reviews:
Photo of metter98
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is very hazy golden yellow in color. It poured with a quarter finger high white head that died down, leaving a patch of bubbles in the center and a thin collar around the edge of the glass
S: Moderate aromas of woody herbs and ginger are present in the nose.
T: The taste mostly follows the smell and also has some added notes of spices and orange peels towards the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has an interesting mix of herbs and spices, but these aren't overpowering. It is a nice one to sip and savor.

Photo of oberon
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have to say the bottle is what got my attention right away but the beer itself stole the show,pours a hazy orange/golden with a nice blooming head that leaves some decent lacing.Aroma is yeasty,spicey,citruisy just a mix of some really good stuff.Taste is almost a cross between a Belgain Pale and a German Hefe Weizen spicey and clovey with a yeasty sweetness to it with a great citruisy fruity taste that lingers and gives it a great aftertaste.Wow what a great brew and incredibly easy to drink for the alcohol content I wish I would have bought more,next trip to Premiere Gourmet in Buffalo and Iam grabbing three or four.

Photo of RoyalT
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – Light orange in color with a bit of carbonation and a decent head.

Smell – This bouquet is just full of smells. The spices are very heavy, especially the ginger. I can also pick up some white pepper and coriander and even some green, leafy-type of herbs, like a subtle oregano or something like that. The fruits are very light and mellow. The melon and light, soft tangerine stand out.

Taste – This is very light, like a nice, fruity fume de blanc. It actually does turn a bit grape-like. I remember having a light white wine flavored with apples just north of San Diego a few years ago, and this reminds me of those lovely flavors.

Mouthfeel – This was light but not thin-feeling, with heavy spices that gave the ale a bit of chalkiness.

Drinkability – Only the Italians could make a light, sexy sipping ale like this. I would highly recommend as an aperitif or with a lighter meal, such as baked fish or any type of pasta in a white cream sauce. You gotta love Nora and pesto!

Comments – I suggest refrigerating this fifth-sized bottle in between pours.

Photo of Jason
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Artsy dark green 750 ml bottle with a freshness date stamped on the back label.

Appearance: Glowing hazy amber orange, decent lacing is all that comes from the slightly fizzy head.

Smell: Flower water, big on the ginger and wafting citrus in the nose. Fruity and spicy knock the nostrils over.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Solid crisp carbonation with a fluffy moderate body, sweet and spicy but more spicy than sweet. Blanket of ginger and a floral flavour extends wide … rose water. Spicy even more with a clove flavour or just a big spicy herbal and phenolic flavour on the tongue. Hops are in the shuffle but seem lost. Long bitter finish of yeast and spice. There is some thick husky graininess there, dry and soft in the after taste.

Drinkability & Notes: Extra points for being some damn interesting, so flavourful and expressive that it annihilated my taste buds for the rest of the night. I’d like to do a side by side tasting with Midas Touch from Dogfish Head and see what comes of it.

Photo of merlin48
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1 pint 9.4 oz bottle is really interesting to behold. Served into a tulip, it pours a slightly hazed, orange/golden body with a large, three finger tall, creamy white head. Head sticks around for several minutes and deposits a moderate amount of patch lace on the glass.
Aroma: This is where the fruity and floral adventure begins. Honeydew melon, white grapes, apple cider, fresh orange pulp, peaches, and notes of tart lemon, are all noted in the aroma at some point in the sipping experience. Lots of floral notes are just as elusive, with fresh blooming lilacs and rose water notes jumping in and out of the bouquet. There is a definite spice profile, as well, but it's restrained and exotic, impossible to pinpoint but quite intriguing.
Mouthfeel: Dry and soft, medium bodied, with some effervescent carbonation. Very nice.
Taste: Fruity and floral, as the aroma suggests, but more complex. Peaches, lemons, strawberries, and honeydew melon are complimented by an intricate floral component of wild rose and lilac. An earthy yeast presence and the subdued exotic spicing keeps the florals and fruits in fine balance. Some herbal and floral hops bitterness helps, as well. This retains a dryness throughout, that compliments the fruity sweetness very well. Reminds me a bit of Fantome Saison blended with a Belgian pale ale. Very tasty.
Drinkability: I really like this one. Definitely, it's different than anything I've ever tried, but overall it has some characteristics of a fine Saison tucked inside the myriad of exotic spices, florals, and fruits. A bit expensive, but worth the effort to seek out. I would never have guessed this was brewed in Italy, if I were tasting it blind. No hint of the alcohol content is able to poke through all the complexity here.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.01/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

big 25oz(?) bottle split amongst many friends at a party poured into a plastic cup. purchased at consumers on sale for 12$. i was unsure exactly what this was at time of tasting, never heard of it and had no idea what style it was.

from what i could tell it poured out a cloudy, hazy golden color, nice foamy white head with good retention.

acidic vinious aroma. very grapey and wine like.

no real funky flavors in the taste, but it has quite a bit of acidity and some sourness, similar to a wild or a belgian. again with grapey, vinious wine notes at the forefront. apricoty, pukey finish and aftertaste.

medium body. slightly tart. not very drinkable, the half pint sample i had was enough.

overall: IMO, not that great, my friends thought so as well. someone mentioned it reminded them of sam adams cranberry lambic which i agreed with. definatly not worth the 12$ price tag (and that was on sale!). one of the most wine like beers ive ever had.

Photo of robertjbell
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

At the Calgary distributor's tasting for Baladin's products we were all at a loss for what the heck this beer could be, as our knowledge of Italian was less than adequate to read their brochure. Thus the most we could get out of this beer was that it was somehow "Egyptian". In retrospect I am now aware that it is a herbed ale with ginger, rose etc. etc. Yet at the time of my reviewing the tastes were somewhat less than distinguishable

Appearance: Dark blonde coloration, opaque with a white and light head and minimal lacing

Nose: Slightly wine-like characteristics infused with light ginger notes, light citrus fruits as well

Taste: Coriander and peppery spices dominate, taste of alcohol comes through in a balsamic vinegar finish, slightly drying at the end

Mouthfeel: Full yet tart, enough carbonation to keep the beer interesting

Drinkability: Not a particularily memorable ale, and not knowing the additives did nothing to aid the drinking experience

Photo of glid02
3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the Brick Store in Atlanta.

Pours a cloudy orange color with a pillowy two-finger head. The head recedes quickly into a thin layer of bubbles on top that leaves decent lacing.

Smells of light oranges and lighter spices. There's not a whole lot of aroma to be had here.

Tastes more potent than it smells. Light citrus flavors are joined by light spices and a husky malt flavor with a mildly bitter ending. There's a lot going on here, but somehow it manages not to be a train wreck. The flavor profile seems to change with each sip, and it took me about halfway through the glass to really get a grip on this beer.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a good thickness with good carbonation and goes down smoothly.

Drinkability is good, mostly because it seems to change with every sip.

Overall this is one interesting beer, although I'm on the fence about how much I like it. I'm glad I gave it a try, but I think one will be enough.

Photo of chrisjvr
4.07/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a delicious and unique brew!

The thin, white head fizzles out quickly. The nose is sweet and spicy with notes of grain and even some orange rind. Smooth but crisp on the palate with a great mouthfeel that lingers just long enough to help the flavors come through -- very floral at first, developing further with spicy herbal tones (can't seem to pin them down, though...almost reminiscent of Saaz hops) and fruit appearing in the finish...almost a little bit of orange or apple. Long, smooth finish (the spice comes back!).

Highly recommended. =)

Photo of sloejams
3.67/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've seen this a few times before, so finally one night out - I crossed it's path and decided to split a bottle with a buddy.

It pours golden orange color into the tulip glass. The scent is strong: vanilla, clove and coriander dominate. The taste reminded me of a ginger snap. There wasn't a terribly gingery taste per se, just the sugary and spice mix. It was a very interesting beer, that I enjoyed. I was drinking some Unibroue's offerings previous to this and that was more of my speed.

Photo of jmz62565
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orange with a medium white head that leaves almost no lacing. The smell is very "bisquity" with corriander,pepper, clove,banana, and a champagne "dryness' to it. The taste is crisp with a hop bite along with a creamy bunch of flavors. Cloves,banana,hops,corriander,pepper.and lemon make this a complex flavor mixture. The m/f is medium,but alittle syrupy and medicanal,but not bad. A decent beer,alittle flawed,but you can drink it easily enough. Cheers.

Photo of tetu
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy tinted golden color with all kinds of stuff floating around in there. Aroma is spicy and yeasty at first but the more I smell the more I get a sweet citrus fruit (tangerine). Spicy with ginger taste. It is hard to describe it perfectly. It has some sourness to it which I wasn't expecting, but it is balanced with sweet citrus. Strange aftertaste, kinda metalic, maybe the myrrh? Medium body with the perfect amount of carbonation imo. Very clean tasting. Very good drink. Easily the best beer I've had from Italy.

Photo of McMatt7
3/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Must have been old. Will revisit.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice presentation in a custom shaped and embossed 25.4 oz bottle with a nice label. It pours a slightly hazy golden-peach body topped by a full and frothy white head that holds quite well. The nose is perfumey, floral, mildly spicy (ginger) and lightly fruity (apricot) with a gentle touch of alcohol. Very clean. It's medium body combines with a fine carbonation to create a gently creamy mouthfeel. The flavor displays a strong floral character, gentle spice and light fruit over a softly sweet malt. It finishes dry with a light touch of malt and a delicate spiciness (ginger). A very clean and somewhat complex ale that's well done and quite enjoyable.

Photo of tempest
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split a large bottle at Tap and Table in Emmaus, PA. They say the beer has some Egyptian inpriation, but it basically drinks and tastes like a spiced Belgian pale ale. It's very smooth and light on the palate with obvious orange peel and a white pepper finish. There are hint of ginger along with the vanilla spice and white bread. If you don't mind the spice, it's worth a try.

Photo of bditty187
4.77/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Vaguely hazy but it is basically clear, the liquid is a beautiful gold in hue with a slight coppery highlight. The head was an active, bubbly white foamy mass that rested gracefully on top of the beer. Head retention was fair; it quickly turned to a soapy island with naked pockets, thin collar. There was no subsequent lacing. On a whole the appearance is attractive. The nose is soft. The potency is moderate. In fact it seems a little fickle, at first anyway. The more I sniffed the more I noticed. Flowers. A greenhouse filled with flowers… on a sunny day. Can a beer smell sunny? Nora does. Traces of fresh honey, light sweetness too. Peppery. Spicy, ginger it seems. Fruity, apricots and peaches I believe. Malt is cracker-like. Herbal. The nose is great; it is like Duvel mixed with a saison. If the smell were more forceful it would be perfection. Inviting. The palate is unique. I translated a blurb on Le Baladin’s website but that didn’t quench my thirst on this beer. Regardless, I think this is a fantastic beverage. It is so light in body, so soft with its touch and yet some flavorful. There are tons going on with this beer yet my tastebuds don’t get slaughtered, they get rewarded. This beer is amazingly complex. I can think of very few beers that have such a vast flavor and none taste like this one. The palate is dry and sweet and spicy and herbal and fruity. Details… the dryness is cracker-like at times. However the overall dryness is like Brut Champagne. Nice. The sweetness is soft and playful, kisses of honey, very light caramel notes. Juicy. Fruits are in play. There is a citrus zip, apricots, peaches, and a smidgen of grapes. Spiciness seems to be, in part, derived from ginger. Peppery. Then it becomes herbal towards the back, before ending on a sweet note and the slightest bit of alcohol heat. On the whole the palate is very tasty. This beer is amazing; it is so delicate! It is beyond comparison. Medium in body, the carbonation is moderately high (but not lively enough, IMO, as this beer is just a little tacky) but the mouthfeel is very pleasant and ideal for the flavor profile. Is this beer drinkable? Yes, you ass! Haven’t you been reading my review? The delicate flavors could be matched with equally delicate foods like fish or waffles at brunch. Maybe even a very, very mild cheese and some rye crackers. Maybe the best pairing for this beer is a couple glasses so it can be shared with friends. I really like this beer; I wish I could drink it again (soon). But I haven’t seen it in my usual hangouts (not in Nebraska because we don’t get shit here, I mean in Kansas City or Iowa City). I purchased this bottle in Burnsville, MN. Unforgettable. World Class.

Photo of tekk9
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nice golden amber color. An off-white head disappeared quickly but left a trace of itself. It smell earthy and spicy, but not overpowering. There is a hint of a woody smell. The flavor is wonderful. Not too sweet, but a little sweetness. I taste orange, but not citrusy. It definitely has an earthy taste upfront followed by a mild herby spiciness. It is medium bodied and nicely carbonated. Definitely a quality beer. For some reason it makes me crave Jamaican Jerk Chicken.

Photo of sawbones420
4.63/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Get a e-newsletter from my favorite beer store every week, and the description for this beer grabbed me enough to check out BA reviews. I can say this was one of the rare occasions I bought a beer based solely on the reviews I read on this site.

I was not let down!

Sexy looking bottle with a trendy label had a stay fresh cap (seals the bottle with a plastic nipple thing on the underside). Cracked and poured into an imperial pint glass. Hazy medium gold color with a splash of reddish in the bulbier part of the glass. Carbonation is alive and loud, dissipating quickly like a fresh cracked 2 liter of Coke would when poured into a glass. No lacing to speak of, but this is certainly still a quality beer.

Aroma is lightly spiced, floral, and slightly citrusy. I can't help but think of Allagash's tripel when sniffing this one. Now I'm excited.

Flavor is awesome! Splashes onto the middle of your tongue and the flavor creeps outwards to the sides. Spices are notable, but never overpowering. Again, I'm reminded of an Allagash, but with a slightly 'flatter' flavor and mouthfeel. Hops never come to the forefront, but there is a similar complexity in the flavor that keeps things interesting. Every sip tastes a bit different. Some pulls are citrusy, others spicy. Keeps you guessing and leaves you smiling.

This beer is a a total pleasure to drink. At 6.8% ABV, it would be all too easy to drink two or three if the price tag wasn't a bit on the steep side (12 or 13 dollars if I recall correctly). I originally chose a 4 for "drinkability" in the pull down menu above, but as I've been sipping on this fine ale and writing this review, I moved it first up to 4.5 and then finally to 5. I'd recommend this brew to anyone, whether they be a fan of beer in general, or even a wine connoisseur. This is certainly one for anybody who loves the "spiced" style. Drink up. Amazing!

Photo of wspscott
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle in Duvel tulip
date looks to be 02/10 in my fridge since last December from wife's xmas present (2010).

A: Pours with a thin white head, crystal clear, dark gold color.
S: Very fruity with a little bit of malt sweetness.
T: Lots of fruits (pears and apples), sweet but dry at the same time, no hint of hops. The bottle says 6.8% alcohol which seems surprising, this could be a 4% beer without any problem. I don't get any hint of spices, the flavors seem to be mostly yeast driven with a little bit of malt character. I would guess that this is pils malt a small bit of hops for bittering and a very interesting yeast, plus some spices .
M: Lots of carbonation and a slightly creamy feel makes this a very easy beer to drink.
O: A very interesting beer, very different from anything I have had before, it is very easy to drink, but has a lot going on. I probably would not buy this often because of the price, but I wish I could afford to have this all the time. Highly recommended.

Photo of philipquarles
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy orange-gold with a fizzy white head that disappears rather quickly. Smells very spicy, with loads of ginger and something else that I'm guessing is myrrh. Slightly citric, floral, and with an overall bready malt character. The same spices are strong in the taste as well, along with floral notes and some earthy character. Quite tangy overall with a dry finish. Light-medium body that is pretty effervescent. Interesting to be sure, though overspiced.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.55/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

An Egyptian styled brew. Brewed in 05. sampled 11/07.

A: Poured a hazy copper orange color with a huge fluffy white head that slowly diminished. Visible carbonation was moderate while small bran flake yeast sediment collected on the bottom of the glass.

S: The nose was yeasty with light bread, a touch of lemon sourness and muskiness.

T: The initial flavor was a blast of lactic sourness, lemons, and light bread notes. There was a huge citrusy sourness flavor along with coriander (pepper) spicing notes. The finish was dry bitter sour citrus with a moderate fade along with some peppery notes. There was a nice tangy spiciness as well. The flavor was yeast dominated but rather one-dimensional. Still a good beer overall, yeasty, with a nice spiciness and wheat palate.

M: The mouthful was oily, with sour citrus (oranges/tangerines) gracing the tongue.

D: moderate drinkability but failed to leave me wanting more.

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours amber with a fading white head.
Delicate aroma of doughy wheat, spicy clove notes, spices, soft sweet malt and herbal notes.
Refreshing, easy-drinking flavours. Light malt with doughy notes, sweetbread and ginger.
High carbonation works well.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a clear light golden color ale with a large pure white foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma of sweet malt with some light fruity notes. Taste is sweeter then expected with a solid malt backbone and some light fruity ester. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Well brewed though too sweet for my own taste and different malt are hard to distinguish.

Photo of abfraser
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml from Pizzeria Delfina

A: Hazy opaque orangish yellow; almost looks like a dark Hefe in the sun.

S: Nothing too notable or strong. A bit of yeast with some clove/banana, some lemon, a bit of muskiness

T/M: Black pepper, slightly sour citrus. The pepper really is there, unlike anything I've had. Medium bodied, refreshing. Overall a very good beer to have with our pizza

D: This one was pretty drinkable; nice spice, refreshing. Glad I tried this.

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Baladin Nora from Birrificio Le Baladin
90 out of 100 based on 284 ratings.