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Figgy Pudding - Block 15 Brewery & Restaurant

Figgy PuddingFiggy Pudding

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

120 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 120
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 12.15%


Brewed by:
Block 15 Brewery & Restaurant visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
"Inspired by a 16th century English Christmas cake our Figgy Pudding is brewed with English Pale & Specialty malts & molasses and fermented with London ale yeast. After fermentation we matured Figgy Pudding in brandy barrels before conditioning with mission figs, Ceylon cinnamon and nutmeg."

64 cases of 750ml bottles produced in November 2010.

Re-released in November 2011.

(Beer added by: msubulldog25 on 11-19-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 120 | Reviews: 43 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of yourefragile
yourefragile

District of Columbia

4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 cork and cage 750 mL bottle shared by Matt served in a random snifter.

Pours a murky dark amber-brown with a short tan head that fades to a frothy ring. Aroma was my favorite part of the beer; subtle blend of oak, cinnamon, apple, plum, nutmeg, molasses and all things Christmas. Flavor is much drier and less sweet than expected. Cinnamon is fairly strong though out and cuts the sweetness of the brandy barrel nicely. Plums, figs, apples and light cherry fruit flavors throughout and a dry, oaky finish. Medium thick body, smooth and creamy throughout. Not nearly as spicy or fruity (or more generally, novel) as imagined, but the balance and subtle alcohol presence this fresh is impressive.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2012 17:31:19 | More by yourefragile
Photo of BedetheVenerable
BedetheVenerable

Missouri

3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Absolutely gorgeous 750 brown Belgian-style bottle, corked and caged...2011 vintage. Really stoked to finally get to try this. Huge thanks to my awesome wife for nabbing this for my birthday!

Appearance: Murky deep garnet brew, capped with a nice light tan cap with good retention.

Smell: Wow, smells quite a bit like the dessert, actually. The first thing you get is a fruity brandy booze note, followed by a bit of dry oak, dark, sticky, juicy figs, and dark caramel. No spice aromas, which is kind of surprising. Still, quite pleasant.

Taste: Not really what I expected. I'm not getting a real strong fruit (i.e. fig) presence here, nor much at all in the way of spice, though several spices were used. This tastes like a really nice oak-aged English Old Ale. Some sweet, caramelly dark malt, nice dry oaky notes with fruity brandy and a bit of leather. Just a bit of sticky dark fig in the background and a hint of dusty cocoa on the finish, but the booze and oak keep it way in the back. A bit bitter and boozy on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full

Overall: Not at all what I expected; this is not a sticky, fruit-forward, spicy Winter Warmer. Instead, this is a slightly fruity, barrel-aged Old Ale in the English tradition. The barrel-aging here has been done really well. A bit of vinous/dark fruit emerges the longer this sits out (i.e. room temp). Gonna hang on to my other bottle of this until next year, to see if the booze retreats a bit and the fruity/spice notes emerge a bit more.

At this point, at $15, I'd give this a B-B+

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2012 04:09:48 | More by BedetheVenerable
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to joe for hooking me up with some block 15 brews. I've wanted to try this one for awhile. This review is based off the newest release - 2011 corked ad caged 750ml bottle format. Shares with friends and poured into a snifter. The brew appears an amber brown with ruby clarity through the body. A finger of tan head fades leaving webby patterns of lacework on the glass. A light swirl brings up a yellowish tan froth. Orange clarity is noted around the edges.

The smell has a dark sweetness like molasses mixed with prunes/plums and some mild spices that include vanilla. It has a very rum-like character about it. Some rindy fruits are noted towards the back of the aroma that were previously surpressed.

The taste is mildly oaky and includes some cinnamon spice overtop of a sweetness of plum, prune, raisin and molasses. The hops are evident with a bit of grassy and herb quality. Overall this has quite a spirit-infused alcohol character throughout. Some toasty caramel to burnt grain flavoring comes out more as the brew warms. Despite the rum alcohol aspect, it also has something reminescent of orange liquor.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest to high level of carbonation that gets very frothy inside the mouth. It contains a nice arrangement of flavor but wasn't exactly what I was expecting. It is certainly worth a try and overall is quite good for what it is.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2012 19:04:46 | More by stakem
Photo of nmbr0ne
nmbr0ne

Florida

3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into snifter from bottle.

Appearance: Mahogany color with a lot of creamy, off-white head. Excellent amount of lacing as well.

Smell: Smells pretty spicy including hints of cinnamon and nutmeg. Doesn't smell a lot like brandy. Smells sweet with fruits dipped in caramel. There was also a strong metallic smell that went away while the beer sat for a little bit. The metallic smell was very off-putting.

Taste: Pretty sweet with not a lot of brandy present from the barrels. Fruity flavor overall.

Mouthfeel: Excellent amount of carbonation. Light to medium-bodied. Has drinkability, but definitely not a lawn-mower beer. I still consider it a dessert beer, but not as delicious as I expected.

Overall: Really nice strong ale, but I can't help but feel a little disappointed about the weak brandy presence.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2012 03:19:12 | More by nmbr0ne
Photo of robbrandes
robbrandes

Oregon

4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml poured into a tulip.

pours a hazy deep brown, amber hints. minimal, tan head, recedes to a thin film. nose is dark fruit, plenty of woodsy-brandy, just a whiff of spice.
taste - big malts upfront, the figs come through in perfect balance with the warm alcohol. reminds me of a well-done belgian dark.

i'm always nervous about spiced beers, but this is exceptionally well done.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2012 05:34:24 | More by robbrandes
Photo of RocPorterFanatic
RocPorterFanatic

Ohio

3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours dark red, almost like craberry juice when held to the light. Alot of off white sticky head, almost 3 fingers worth.

S - Caramel, charred figs, burnt marshmallow.

T - Sticky sweet with marshmallow and fig all up front. A brandy like alcohol warmth is very present and complements the beer nicely. Sugary sweetness chases the beer down the palate as I swallow.

M - Cloying sweetness broken up by ginger ale/Champagne like carbonation.

O - Perfect beer for the holiday season. Might need to stock up on this one. I'm afraid of what would happen once the alcohol and carbonation were to fade. This beer would become a sticky mess.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2011 21:38:27 | More by RocPorterFanatic
Photo of dwaz
dwaz

Pennsylvania

4.72/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Robbrandes for sending this, 2011 vintage.

A: Pours a dark reddish brown with small white head

S: Strong smell of sweet cherry and figs with slight whiff of brandy that becomes more pronounced as the beer warms

T: Just like the smell, strong taste of sweet cherry and figs upfront with a nice brandy flavor on the back end, a nice sipper. Didn't really pick up any cinnamon or nutmeg flavors

M: Medium carbonation and body

O: A really nice treat for Xmas morning, gave to my wife as a present and she wanted to open it immediately. Fortunately for me, she shared the bottle and it didn't disappoint, great Christmas beer. Again, thanks Rob for making this happen.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2011 18:27:29 | More by dwaz
Photo of Siggy125
Siggy125

California

3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks oregone for this one.
2010 vintage poured form its 750ml bottle, shared with a group of buddies while doing a Christmas and winter warmer bottle share.

Mirky caramel brown in color, almost no carbonation, maybe a few lonely bubbles.

Smells of dried fruits, mainly figs, baking spices and a subtle brandy booziness on the nose. Pleasand aromas.

The palate presence very similar to the nose but the figs and heavy malt sweetness are very prominent. Flavors of fruitcake, cookie dough and brandy follow. The abv is noticeable but not as heavy as the abv may indicate.

This is a very unique brew and serves well as a winter warmer on the right occasion. Not sure it lived up to the hype for me but very glad I got to try it.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2011 20:55:48 | More by Siggy125
Photo of corylew
corylew

Oregon

4.47/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had the '11 on tap

Pours muddy brown with a thin tan head that forms into a ring around the tulip glass halfway down.

Smells fruity with a malty toasty nose that swims amongst molasses and spice.

Tastes malty foremost. Lots of spice and fruit characteristics. A slight sweetness but only in a flavor aspects not in density.

Mouthfeel follows Belgian guidelines. Spritzy.

Overall this beer was a crowd favorite. Packed with flavor yet light. Absolutely wonderful.

Serving type: on-tap

12-01-2011 03:43:22 | More by corylew
Photo of oregone
oregone

Oregon

4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Side by side draft comparison of 2010 to 2011.

Note: I have high hopes (and expect) that some of the currently stronger spice notes, predominantly cinnamon, in the '11 will mellow with some time leaving the greater fruit presence in that year to shine as it does, albeit to a lesser extent, in the '10.

A: '11 visibly darker and running towards molasses
'10: Caramel or dark honey. Good clarity.
Both pour with a solid finger+ of creamy off-white head that recedes to persistent broken tufts of cloudy foam. Excellent lacing.

S: '11: Cinnamon and baking spice up front with a big push of candied fruit and fig preserves. Light hint of alcohol enhances the spiciness. Some rich oak/vanilla notes apparent.
'10: Subdued spiciness from cinnamon and nutmeg with a lift again from the light alcohol note. Fruit is less caramelized/preserved and more simply along the lies of 'ripe.' Malt backbone more apparent in a reticent bready character. Hints of spicy barrel treatment.

T: '11: Spicy up front. Cinnamon dominant with a light sharpness balanced by the strong fruit again. Buckwheat honey, dried fig, very dark caramel or molasses, and some brandy-soaked raisin apparent. Soft oaken notes with hints of vanilla again.
'10: Subtle spice. More along a vague hint of pumpkin pie spice than anything distinctive. Ripe to over-ripe figs, some dark caramel, hints again of a dark honey. Golden raisin and some molasses..

M: '11: Moderately viscous with a good medium/full body. Carbonation is more creamy in appreciation than crisp. Very smooth, and stears away from sticky in favor of rich.
'10: Very similar.

O: I found the current spiciness of the '11 to detract from the experience to some extent, as did some others in our group. However, others next to us, including brewery/pub staff seemed to disagree. Obviously tolerance of it is a matter of taste largely. There is a very nice richer fruit and altogether 'darker' fruit and caramel character to the '11 that bodes well for it's development. Not having had the '10 at the time of it's release, I can't say whether they both will follow similar evolutionary paths in regards to the spice, but they are quite visibly different beers otherwise.
I've averaged my impressions for the two, and if reviewing the '10 alone would have given a higher score, but again, my expectation is that the '11 will evolve nicely and ultimately end up as the better brew. I hope. ;)

Serving type: on-tap

11-20-2011 08:38:46 | More by oregone
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2/21/2011

Snifter.

A: Orangish crimson with a big frothy beige head. Scattered lacing.

S: Really aromatic. Big fig and molasses notes with well integrated cinnamon and nutmeg. A little caramel and brown sugar accompany faint plum notes, brandy, and a little leather.

T: High level of sweetness with big fig and molasses notes accompanying a light brandy profile. Spices kick in midpalate and carry through the finish, cinnamon and nutmeg. Moderate booze heat. Slight caramel note.

M: Upper medium in body with moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is smooth and sticky.

Overall: A very complex beer that I liked quite a bit in small quantities.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2011 02:13:57 | More by HopHead84
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Belmont Station the other night.

The beer pours a fairly dark brown color with very good head retention and nice lacing. The nose is likewise impressive, showcasing considerable molasses, caramel, cherry and vanilla. This beer smells rich and sweet, and I get the impression it will likely be pretty potent as well. As good as this beer smells, it tastes even better and is more complex on the palate. There is considerable vanilla and fig flavor, along with the caramel and molasses. The flavor components seemed to improve and become more complex as the beer warmed in the glass, and I picked up some sweet melon, hazelnut and butter as well. The beer is pretty viscuous, with the carbonation dialed down fairly low. That seemed to add to the rich, soft, heavy cream mouthfeel to this beer. While the beer is not at all hot, heavy or tiring on the palate, you can tell the alcohol is definitely up there, and that along with the sweetness makes this beer very much a sipper.

Glad I had a chance to try this one. This is really a very nice Winter Warmer, and would probably not be something I would enjoy any other time except in the dead of Winter. Regardless, this is an impressive effort from the folks at Block 15.

Serving type: on-tap

12-12-2010 17:06:30 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of billshmeinke
billshmeinke

California

4.18/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reiew from notes:

Murky brown color. Ring of foam around the edge of the glass. No lacing, some legs that recede into the glass after being swirled. 3
Smells of candied dried fruits. Some buttery brandy, touch of vanilla oak, hints of alcohol. The fig candied dried fruits steal the show in the nose. 4
The taste follows nose, but much more barrel butter brandy notes than in the nose. I almost get a touch of pineapple as well (brett?) 4.5
The mouthfeel is smooth creamy and finishes dry though it has a round and sweet body mid palate. 4
A challenging and tasty beer. Quite nice. 4

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2010 21:47:18 | More by billshmeinke
Photo of djbreezy
djbreezy

Washington

4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this one at Belmont Station in Portland, OR.

appearance - dark cherry and brown in appearance, short white head, streaks of lacing

smell - spice, fig, brandy

taste - fig and brandy intertwined with aromatic spices, very complex

mouthfeel - medium/full bodied, quite warm

drinkability - such a complex feat of delicious brew, a sipper's beer

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2010 18:25:57 | More by djbreezy
Photo of squaremile
squaremile

Oregon

4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Lucky to try this elusive brew. Pours a ruby/dark brown, head stays around the edge with no lacing. Smell is vanilla, figs, tobacco, and booze. Taste is excellent. Figs, apricot, vanilla, maple syrup, and leather dominate, with some alcohol bite and mild bitterness to balance an enduring sweetness. The mouthfeel is where this shines, exceptional medium body and smoothness. Drinkability is good with the booziness and the abv preventing more consumption. I would love to have a bottle of this aged. The best Block 15 beer I've had.

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2010 03:37:48 | More by squaremile
Photo of boMD
boMD

Oregon

4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

8oz pour at The Hop & Vine. As far as I know, one of the only, if not only few kegs to hit Portland.

Poured hazy/cloudy amber-honey with a thin white head that kept a consistent ring around the edge of the glass.

Nose was bready, well spiced, cloves, cinnamon, ginger, and light fruits. The initial flavors started out malty, very sweet, toasty and nutty, but really turned boozy and hot towards the finish. Definitely a brandy kick to it. One to two years would do wonders for this brew. Other notes of vanilla, apples, bitter-sweet molasses, and ripe fruits. The yeast played like champagne, creating a very dry finish and a bit of carbonation on the tongue.

Serving type: on-tap

11-30-2010 17:41:53 | More by boMD
Photo of msubulldog25
msubulldog25

Oregon

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 6 oz. pour from one of very few 1/4 barrels that left Corvallis - this one courtesy of NoPo's finest, Hop & Vine. Served in a petite wine glass.

2010 - First Release

A: Murky tawniness, an opaque and leather-colored liquid. Stubby white head, a fraction of a finger that settles soon to a star-shaped film and ringing cream. Droopy bands of lace hang like 'legs' in a fine glass of wine.

S: Malts meet the nose right away with a nutty and praline-like toffee sweetness. Served pretty cool, so the nose isn't quite as pronounced, but it's enticing nonetheless. Sitting a while helps some, eliciting a bit more pit fruit and port wine.

T: A fruit cornucopia: muddled figs and raisins, apples and dates. There's a thicker, darker spiciness working here - molasses and rum cake - and enough toasted woodsiness and barrel-char to offset all the sweetness. Cocoa, then vanilla, then cocoa again - wow. A complex and vibrant Old Ale with substantial character now and potential for more...

M: The creamiest feel: refined carbonation that coats gently and warms (somewhat) gradually. Lingering spices and a lasting cocoa dust bittering. Not exactly 'hot', but the alcohol here is pretty notable. A fortunate twist brought a cellarable bottle or two, so we'll see where this one goes.

D: No doubt this is fine and interesting today. Sure, it's a bit boozy now - nothing that a few months more in a cellar can't resolve, however. Review and scoring will be revised as necessary when the day comes that I open a bottle. For now, just seek out a bottle (or a pour: only 64 cases produced and limited kegs) - you won't be disappointed.

Serving type: on-tap

11-30-2010 00:19:32 | More by msubulldog25
Photo of ElGordo
ElGordo

Oregon

4.47/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pretty amber color with orange highlights, without much of a head. Sweet aroma of pale malt, candi sugar, a whiff of molasses and brandy, and tons of sweet, ripe figs. Palate is sweet throughout - molasses sweetness and candied figs, with a hint of cinnamon. Body is rich and pretty creamy, with some very light carbonation to provide a little lift. Finish is sweet and warm from the considerable alcohol content. Very tasty and complex, although I'd like to see what a few months in the cellar could do for it.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2010 18:36:28 | More by ElGordo
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Figgy Pudding from Block 15 Brewery & Restaurant
88 out of 100 based on 120 ratings.