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New Holland El Mole Ocho - New Holland Brewing Company

New Holland El Mole OchoNew Holland El Mole Ocho

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

314 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 314
Reviews: 149
rAvg: 3.53
pDev: 17%

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  9.79% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: alexgash on 04-04-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 314 | Reviews: 149 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Darkmagus82


3.46/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a snifter

Appearance – The beer is served a clear cherry reddish color with a small off white head. The head fades rather fast leaving a lighter level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma of the brew is mainly of a cocoa and bready nature with the cocoa smell having a good level of a sweeter caramel aroma mixed within. Along with these aromas are some dark fruit smells as well as a little bit of a hot pepper/chili like smell and an almost medicine like boozy aroma.

Taste – The taste begins with a sweeter fruit flavor upfront, mostly of a cherry and plum, but also has some other flavors of a light chocolate and some caramel mixed within. As the taste advances, the chocolate flavors get stronger while the sweeter fruit flavors begin to fade. While the sweeter fruit fades it is replaced by some caramel, which maintains the sweetness up to the middle of the taste. This caramel however begins to fad while at the same time some coffee, more cocoa, and a little bit of chili comes to the tongue. The chili starts out quite light but gains strength as the flavor moves forward. Toward the end, some pepper flavors also join the tongue, and when combined with the chili, the lessened sweet flavors, the cocoa and the lighter coffee, end up leaving a moderately spicy, moderately sweet, and somewhat oddly flavored taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel-The body of the beer is rather light for a brew of nearly 10 % abv with a carbonation that consists of tons of tiny carbonation bubbles the tickle the tongue. The tiny carbonation bubbles are perfect for the taste profile balancing out and calming the chili that greets the tongue at the end. The thinner body is very nice as well, as with it subdues the chili, but still all while, compliments the fruit and sweeter flavors of the brew very nicely.

Overall – This was a very interesting brew. The mouthfeel, I must say, was done very well, nearly exactly what is right for the flavor profile. The flavor however, while overall it has nice individual components, all combined together it is not really something I found all that appealing. It was a very good one to give a try to, but nothing I would go back to again and again.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2013 02:06:02 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of cagocubs


4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap at NHB.

A: Rustic brown with some amber tinting at edges of glass. Minimal head due to water flush prior to pour.

S: A sweet and smokey smell. Good spicing to beer.

T: Good smokey and spicy flavors with complex malts and sweet caramel malts. Some hops come through.

M: Good taste and aftertaste. Warming and inviting.

Serving type: on-tap

07-20-2012 03:26:19 | More by cagocubs
Photo of barczar


3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear caramel brown with amber highlights and a solid beige head that settles into a layer of foam on the surface.

Fruity pepper, cocoa, and caramel malt dominate the aroma.

The fruity pepper carries into the flavor, slightly spicy but not overpowering, with cinnamon adding complexity and sweet malt and chocolate providing contrast.

Body is moderate work moderate carbonation and significant alcohol warmth.

Interesting brew. Fruity pepper flavor dominated and was nicely accompanied by sweet chocolate and cinnamon. Wouldn't want a whole bomber, though.

Serving type: on-tap

04-30-2012 01:20:04 | More by barczar
Photo of BMMillsy


2.11/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

My first chile beer. Had this on draft at Ashley's in Ann Arbor. Pours reddish brown with small white head that quickly dissipates. Smells of some chile peppers, tobasco, and a bit of malt sweetness. Taste is not pleasant. Tobasco sauce mixed with a mediocre amber ale, rather thick and sweet. But overall the chile overpowers. Really funky. Gave it a chance and drank most of the pint, but I got physically ill after drinking half of this one.

Serving type: on-tap

04-09-2012 14:05:17 | More by BMMillsy
Photo of jale


3.6/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at the Shark club in Howell.

A: Pours a clear brown with a dime of off white head.

S: Roasted coffee and cocoa.

T: A hint of sweetness upfront followed by a mere second of roasted malt. I feel the heat from the chillis but not much flavor from them. I get mild chocolate from time to time. Finish is sweet, spicy and bitter coffee.

M: Medium body with good carbonation.

O: I would have liked more flavor from the peppers and not just heat.

Serving type: on-tap

08-09-2011 22:18:58 | More by jale
Photo of ebby82


1.93/5  rDev -45.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I had this beer as part of a sampler at the brewpub.

It had dark brown color with no head when it arrived.

The aroma was of spicy chiles, chocolate, and a little bit of malt.

The taste was rather disgusting. Chiles and chocolate and little else. I tried, but was unable to finish even the little sampler I had.
My wife was similarly disgusted.

I'm not sure who drinks this beer, but more power to them if they enjoy it.

Serving type: on-tap

07-17-2011 12:43:15 | More by ebby82
Photo of ModemMisuser


4.65/5  rDev +31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at NH. :)

Far too many "specialty" (flavored) beers either don't have the
taste of the thing they're supposed to, or it's too overpowering and/or "fake" tasting to be good.

Not this one. It tastes like it's made with mole, and it comes through very good. The beer-y notes are there in the background and make a good compliment to the mole.

If you're looking for something "different," give this one a try!

Serving type: on-tap

07-06-2011 17:33:23 | More by ModemMisuser
Photo of Holland


3.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: deep brown, even in the small glass I was served in Holland. Kind of meh lacing, and little head that stayed around.

S: very nutty, almost like smelling inside a jar of peanut butter. Also smells of spices like cinnamon and malt.

T: malty, some chili, some cacao, and a very slight nutty flavor. Some sweetness rounds it out.

M: creamy and sticky, which wasn't as I expected.

O: not great. I liked it, but was glad I didn't have a large bottle of it. Probably won't order again just due to opportunity cost - there are so many better beers, even though this one is a good spiced beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-29-2011 15:34:37 | More by Holland
Photo of Spider889


2.45/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

On tap at Bodega. It's been there for weeks... I wonder why...

What a strange beer. To be honest, this was one where sheer morbid curiosity overcame me. At under $3 a glass during Bodega's happy hour I figured there was minimal risk. Though had they not run out of Breakfast Stout I'd have ignored this beer completely!

I can't even begin to remember all of the ingredients in this beer. I know there are many traditional mole ingredients: chocolate, chile peppers, coffee...

Looked inviting enough, dark but slightly clear. The color of weak, watery coffee. Slight tan colored head on it.

Smelled like coffee alright. Slightly sweet and some nice dark malts in there as well.

Flavor was all over the place. Sweet chocolate up front, followed by roasty malts. Then a very slight prickle of heat on the tongue, but it faded quickly before reaching the back of the throat. The chile is noticeable, but I would have liked a little more I think. Mild coffee flavors and more sweetness. There's some hop bitterness on the finish leaving behind a roasted, dry coffee aftertaste. Frankly the aftertaste was the only part of the flavor I liked. Everything was much too jumbled and odd for my liking.

I did not find this very drinkable. The third bad beer of the night at Bodega last Friday. Thank god for half off happy hour...

Serving type: on-tap

11-02-2010 07:00:31 | More by Spider889
Photo of spointon


3.8/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this one on tap at the Binny's South Loop store in Chicago. Served in a nonic pint glass.

A= This ale poured a deep red-brown color that reminded me of finely polished mahogany furniture. The head was a light tan in color and rose just 1/2" before settling to a thin dense cap. Some decent but not great lacing present.

S= Modest complexity of sweet darker malts, caramel, toffee, and some unidentifiable spices. Not much in the way of hops in the nose. Only a hint of pepper spiciness.

T= Wow, this was a tasty treat. The malt complexity is nice, showing a good range of sweetness and depth. The spice note and the pepper build slowly and peak just at the finish with a tingly sensation down the back of your tongue. Very nicely done.

M= Almost to the level of full bodied, with a creamy and chewy viscosity. Carbonation was medium and helped to keep this from feeling too thick.

D= Very drinkable despite the unusual ingredients. This I believe is accomplished through the brewer's avoidance of a heavy hand with these flavors. Nicely done!

Serving type: on-tap

08-10-2010 05:28:57 | More by spointon
Photo of dirtylou


3.28/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on-tap, sheffields in chicago

excited to see this on tap because i was intrigued to try it but knew it wouldnt be good enough to warrant a bomber purchase

appearance: served in a small chalice - dark burgundy-mahogany, very little head

smell: spicy - cocoa, licorice, pepper, holiday spice

taste: fairly abrasive - not really from the alcohol but rather the strong spicy body. Mole is such a complex and diverse sauce, critical to mexican cuisine. Unfortunately, it just doesnt work as a beer - overly spicy, poor use of the chocolate flavor profile. interesting, but no

mouthfeel: hot and spicy

drinkability: ok

Serving type: on-tap

07-27-2010 01:37:15 | More by dirtylou
Photo of atsprings

North Carolina

3.88/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Flying Saucer served in a tulip glass an almost opaque black that shows ruby highlights when held to light. The beer is topped with a thin khaki head. Aroma is slight roasted malts, not much else. The taste is sharp chilies in front of dark malts and cocoa. The beer is on the heavy side of medium with mild corporation. This is certainly an interesting beer, one I'd love to have again.

Serving type: on-tap

07-21-2010 22:38:48 | More by atsprings
Photo of BEERchitect


3.55/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Why are these chili beers so appealing? Taking beer from standard barley and hop balance to chocolate and chili proves both challenging and compelling for me as well as the brewers.

Bold aromas of caramel and chocolate create the structure for the nose while the chili/vegital/peppery notes leap right off with a lot of zest and intrigue.

Deep copper to medium brown, the beer shows bright clarity below a very froathy off-white head that shows remarkable formation, retention, and lacing.

Base flavors seem to derive from an English Brown Ale (think Newcastle) but with much bolder caramel/toffee tastes as well as chocolate and rich nuttiness. With very low hop contributions, the beer relies on vibrant spices of cinnamon, nutmeg? and chili peppers for complexity, balance, and allure. Lightly vegital behind the chili flavor but doesn't detract from the drinkability.

Mediuum-sweet textures start the session but give way at mid-palate for a drying, warming, and fleeting malty finish. As the malt creaminess fades, the alcohol/chili warmth builds and eventually dominates the finish.

El Mole Ocho reminds me a lot of Theobroma but with a sweeter, more simplified maltiness thus allowing for greater separation from the chili and spice additions.

Serving type: on-tap

07-01-2010 16:52:11 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Katahdin


4.75/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Quite an interesting beer, not sure I've ever had anything similar. The aroma is very earthy like combination of bread and malts but the taste is very different from the aroma. taste has hints of Mexican Chile and Cayenne peppers but blends it with a lingering citrus flavor that balances out and ameliorates the spiciness so you get a smooth pleasant taste that lingers. Goes down very smooth especially for a big beer. Could drink this all night and not tire of it if it weren't for its big alcohol.

Serving type: on-tap

06-09-2010 18:32:20 | More by Katahdin
Photo of branimal9

South Carolina

3.9/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Barley's Greenville 5/28/2010.

Dark coppery-brown in color, with a small tan head. Smell has that mole aroma you would expect from the name - pepper, chocolate & other spices. Also picking up some estery-ness that I would associate with belgian yeast. Flavor is chocolate and a bit of steely flavor, coupled with peppery-heat bite on the finish. Creamy in texture. Not bad drinkability, despite its high ABV. An interesting and flavorful experience.

Serving type: on-tap

06-02-2010 00:31:25 | More by branimal9
Photo of cokes


4.28/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark ruby-brown with a moderate beige dome which lasts a but and lays down some lace.
Caramel-chocolate confection nose, with a dash of earthy chili pepper within a sweeter vanilla latte sense of cream and coffee. Some rum-like, molasses-y booze as well. In other words, despite the peppers, this is very sweet and malty.
The mouth is glazed first with vanilla-tinged caramel. Some dark fruits venture in...date, fig, raisin... These are evaporated but the mocha java notion that comes next. Peppers begin around midway, and are sporadic. Light beams of fleshy, earthy, spiciness. It tails off towards brown sugar, molasses and anise, with lingering dark cocoa. Hopping is low, but brings a light grassy bitterness. Alcohol is not low, but not overinflated. Some Brandy or Rum notions appear just prior to the swallow.
Fullish bodied with a steady, minor carbonation. This should be cloying, but it's not, as the small amount of bubbles allow things to gather a bit, but ultimately wash them away.
I've had the bottle and tap versions, and I'd say the tap was a subtly but notable better. If your ready for a malt bomb, this is quite drinkable.
It's a bit refreshing to sampler a beer that is "flavor-oriented" and have it still taste like beer, with beer traits encompassing the intended flavor profile, and leaving the spices and adjuncts as auxiliary. This isn't marinade, it's still beer. And delicious beer. Maybe New Holland can send a rep to Southern Tier to show them how something like this can be pulled off deftly.

Serving type: on-tap

05-27-2010 09:04:31 | More by cokes
Photo of jrallen34


3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this on tap at Bad Apple. A dark amber color but very clear with a tan head, kind of watery, not much retention or lacing...The aroma is nice and balanced with smoke and spice, really makes me hungry. The taste doesn't really live up to the aroma, but its ok. Gives you the smoke and spice, but a little too spicy for me. Light feel, not a beer you can drink a ton of.

Serving type: on-tap

05-26-2010 20:07:27 | More by jrallen34
Photo of RockyTopHeel

North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tasted at the CBC Chicago 2010 Rare Beer Tour at Small Bar Division Street.

A deep, ruby-colored brew with minimal head. Aroma of molasses and yeast, like a dark Belgian, with hints of cocoa and pepper.

Taste is deliciously balanced - rum raisins and molasses with cocoa, chile pepper, and sticky toffee. Sweet and sticky, this is a really enjoyable quaff alongside Small Bar's terrific chili.

Serving type: on-tap

04-10-2010 23:46:39 | More by RockyTopHeel
Photo of superspak


3.8/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 9/11/2013. Pours crystal clear deep reddish brown color with a 1-2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings around the glass, with some light streaming carbonation. Aromas of chocolate, cocoa, raisin, plum, pear, caramel, toast, brown bread, brown sugar, chili pepper, light coffee, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good complexity and balance of malt, spice, and yeast ester notes; with good strength. Taste of chocolate, cocoa, raisin, plum, pear, toast, brown sugar, brown bread, light chili pepper, light coffee, herbal, and toasted/yeast earthiness. Slight pepper heat on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, raisin, plum, pear, toast, brown sugar, brown bread, light coffee, light chili pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance, complexity, and robustness of malt, spice, and yeast ester flavors; with light-moderate chili/coffee presence and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a moderately slick and fairly smooth mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very good chili beer. Good balance, robustness, complexity of malt, yeast ester, and spice flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A nicely enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 01:56:59 | More by superspak
Photo of iheartmyTHO


3.08/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

I've had other "mole" beers before, so perhaps that skewed what I thought of this beer.

Definitely got notes of chocolate and the chiles. With other mole beers, the chocolate taste would always over power any chile flavor - not that that's a bad thing. But the beer has a nice lightness to it, which was unexpected. But that could be perhaps the other mole beers I have had were Porters, so I was expecting this beer to be a bit heavier.

Not sure if I would drink this beer again, since I think I would have liked it to be heavier and taste more of the chocolate.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2014 01:40:34 | More by iheartmyTHO
Photo of SHolland


2.55/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

I feel i should be discussing one of my favorite beers for my first review, but unfortunately this is the first beer I have felt strongly enough about to actually write about.

A - Part of my disappointment was thinking this was a stout, not an herbed/spiced ale. However, once realizing what I had, I thought the appearance was decent. Nice medium-dark brown hue and a fine, light tan head with great retention. Seems a little thin for 10.5% abv (my bottle from 2013 says abv is higher than what is listed on this webapge), but I guess a mole isn't usually viscous either.

S - My first indication that I wouldn't care for this beer. Cocoa is definitely present but beyond overpowered by the smell of mildly spicy green chiles. Makes me think the taste will have a kick to it. Don't really get any coffee.

T - You know those chills you get when you taste something you dislike? That just happened. I feel like I just chugged a can of old el paso diced green chiles that were packed in a cocoa coffee water. Sweet. Slightest hint of heat in the finish. Alcohol is well masked. Note: flavor is getting slightly (slightly) better as it warms to room temp. But not pleasant.

M - Smooth, not quite silky. Appropriate for a mole of sorts.

Overall: Massively disappointed. Not sure I can finish it, and I NEVER dump beer. I can see where they were going for the mole, but it just did. not. work. Maybe this batch is different from past batches that were reviewed more positively?

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2014 03:45:10 | More by SHolland
Photo of dakotaben

North Dakota

3.15/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I was debating between the New Holland Honey High Gravity and this... I sort of wish I would have tried with the other. This is a decent beer and I love New Holland, but it just doesn't match why I hoped.

Appearance - a caramel, almost coffee, look. Nice tan head that was not too thick.

Smell - to me, it almost like a dark coco with a slight coffee smell.

Taste- Sweet, but this is where I definitely get the mexican chile flavor.

Mouthfeel - For as strong as the alcohol content is, it feels light and nice

Overall - It is better than ok, but the likelihood I would go out of my way to drink this one again is small, but decent beer from an awesome brewery.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2014 03:07:21 | More by dakotaben
Photo of rajendra82


4.24/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Reddish brown pour had a small amount of fizzy carbonation, and formed a fleeting, and small head. The overall look was very similar to a glass of Coca Cola. The smell had a lot of cherry in it, along with the fruit were hints of chocolate. The taste showed off the chocolate a lot more than the smell. The dry fruit flavors (prune, raisins, dried cherries) were also there, and the chiles showed up strongest in the finish. Lots of complexity here, along with similarity to the Mexican sauce this beer was named after. Very soft in the mouth, with a velvety texture. Looking at the other reviews, this beer seems to me underrated to me.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2013 05:15:37 | More by rajendra82
Photo of Brenden


3.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Plenty clear with a translucency owing only to the darkness, it's a lovely mahogany or cherry wood brown-red, brilliant and fiery in its depths. The head, light brown, is compact, tight and solid. It manages close to one finger and shows good retention while depositing moderate spotting as it recedes.
Peppers come out in the nose, lots of flesh and skin with some heat. There's a certain fruity sweetness as well complemented by a dryer sort of cocoa. It goes drier with a not-quite-doughy malt to set against the sweetness while a strong note of yeast plays a hand underneath it all.
The taste follows suit, but the heat of the peppers really backs down and just sort of tickles a little. Cocoa also backs down against a sweetness that makes me think more of prunes than plums and maybe something like apricot. It's a little tangy as well. It gets fairly boozy, too, but doesn't build up and just sort of plays with everything else. It may have been 9.79%, but my bottle says 10.5%.
There's lots of smoothness with only a little crispness, but unvarying. It leans on the light side in the medium body. It's semi-sweet the whole way through, almost breaking toward semi-dry in the finish.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2013 14:45:53 | More by Brenden
Photo of Georgiabeer


3.55/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Okay, I guess that this beer reminds me slightly of a mole, but only because there are both chile and chocolate notes, but beyond that there is not much to evoke the complexity and depth a of a mole- far too thin and one-note (okay, two note). The chile heat is at the right level, but the chocolate is thin and watery, and there is no solid malt background to support anything, and no other spice notes to play off of the chile and chocolates. A nice idea for a beer, but needs some retooling.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2013 21:33:35 | More by Georgiabeer
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New Holland El Mole Ocho from New Holland Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 314 ratings.