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New Holland El Mole Ocho - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
New Holland El Mole OchoNew Holland El Mole Ocho

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

345 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 345
Reviews: 150
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 16.76%
Wants: 13
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
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: 345 | Reviews: 150 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lackenhauser
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Your usual brown ale sort of beer-soft coppery color. Aroma is a mild mix of cocoa/jalapeno and somewhat boozy. A fair amount going on here though somewhat muted. Mildly sour upfront. Lingering flavors of cocoa and chiles. Very prevelent honey like sweetness. Nice mouthfeel-quite smooth. Quite an interesting beer but the overall sweetness and melange of flavors can be a bit much. Sure it is good enough, but lacks a bit in the overall drinkability.

lackenhauser, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of wedgie9
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted from bottle purchased at Lush West Town. Pours dark clear amber with a smallish white head that leaves some lace on the outside of the glass. Aroma is green jalapeno, bitter chocolate, and a lot of coffee. This is a very unique beer. Flavor starts of with some sweetness and cocoa and moves to jalapeno and then bitter coffee. All of these flavors are very well balanced to create a very unique and delicious beer. The body is fairly heavy and coating with pretty light carbonation and a long finish that is both spicy (jalapeno), and bitter (coffee).

wedgie9, Sep 27, 2010
Photo of JToad
3.78/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Very little tan head, with decent lacing on the sides. Dark brown, with copper hues, almost the color of sweet tea.

Smells of toffee, candied fruit. Hints of chocolate.

Sweet candied fruit right away, barleywine-esque. Tobacco and peppers, with a bit of heat on the back end.

Mouthfeel is relatively viscous. Warms as it goes down.

The more I drink this, the more I enjoy it. Tastes stronger than 8.0%. Pretty complex brew all things considered. I would love to pair a nice spicy maduro with this, and really bring out the heat.

I think Ill pick this up again if I find it. New Holland is a very solid brewery.

JToad, Sep 27, 2010
Photo of Spica66
3/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

A: Dark ruby-brown, like a barleywine. Minimal head formation and lacing.

S: Very vinous and sweet with a strange hot/tart vibe.

T: Extremely surprising taste. Sweet like a barleywine then followed up with a slightly coffee/slightly chili pepper aftertaste.

M: Very smooth and creamy.

D: None of the three of us could finish our split due to the strangeness of the taste. It just became too overpowering(?).

Spica66, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of siradmiralnelson
3.6/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz bottle into Tulip.

A. Poured a 1/2 finger head. Head didn't stick around too long. Not much lacing. Color is ruby brown.

S. Brown sugar, caramel malt, molasses. Big malt smells coming from this. Dont get a lot of chocolate, but there is some. Chocolate kind of comes and goes in hiffs. Smells almost like a barleywine. Not really any hop smell at all. Interesting smell.

T. Taste is not quite what the smell leads it on to be. Definitely more bitter. Taste is dark chocolate. Some alcohol. Bit of coffee bitterness. Some sweetness in the background from the malt. Interesting. Definitely better than the last New Holland beer I had.

M. Medium bodied. Medium/low carbonation.

D. Drinkable. Not my favorite beer by any means, but this is pretty unqiue in a good way. Taste takes on some of the more bitter dark chocoalate flavors, which some might prefer. Personally I like the sweeter chocolate flavors in beer.

siradmiralnelson, Sep 09, 2010
Photo of shivtim
3.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An interesting beer. Had to try it.
Poured out into pint glasses and shared with two friends.

It's a deep brown, a bit hazy, with a thin lacy tan head. Looks ok. Nose is like a mild brown ale, with just a hint of spicy chili. Nice malt backbone. No hops detected.
Taste has a bit more of the chilis, and some chocolate. Subtle but nice. A more robust chocolate flavor develops on warming, countered by a lingering chili spiciness.

Decent mouthfeel, decent drinkability. Not fantastic, but worth a try.

shivtim, Aug 31, 2010
Photo of TheHoppiest
3.8/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into an oversized snifter. Pours a ruby-brown with a tan head that quickly disperses to a ring around the glass.

Has a pungent malty-alcohol aroma, somewhat bready and yeasty, with hints of vanilla extract. The smell, frankly, is a little much.

Has a sweet spicy taste, chocolate, vanilla and toffee notes, an overall breadiness, and a smoother finish that the smell would lead you to expect. Some alcohol floavors ending with a touch of bitter.

Mouthfeel is smooth, almost creamy, with a slight sharpness at the end.

Pretty drinkable once you get past the in-your-face alcohol smell. I'd had this on tap before and it was served too cold. I recommend allowing it to warm before drinking.

TheHoppiest, Aug 27, 2010
Photo of bort11
3.93/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into a wide mouth chalice. Not much head and lacing is very sparse. Body color is a hazy garnet. The initial pour is dirty looking, though clarity comes through as it settles. In all honesty, not much to look at.

Smell has a muted coffee aroma mixed with some chocolate malts. I was expecting more intensity. It is mellow and mild like many mole sauces. Also like many mole sauces, there is a slow burn from the chilies. At first it feels like it is just the carbonation, but then there is a little bite. It's not hot, just a bit bitey.

Mouthfeel is a little thinner than what I expected as well. There is still a strong medium body that has a malty stickiness. This is a subtle beer. The spices are not overwhelming. I would like to cook with this beer. I bet it would make a great base for a mole sauce.

bort11, Aug 19, 2010
Photo of spointon
3.8/5  rDev +8%
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!

spointon, Aug 10, 2010
Photo of Daniellobo
4.03/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich Ale with a distinct and nicely integrated Mole Poblano sense.

Presentation: 22 oz capped brown bottle. Simplistic label with the image of an old cooking pot over a brown background and yellow lettering. It is not awful but not particularly remarkable. Is this a new step away from the screen-printed big bottles? Hmmm... Back label offers a small narrative with the main intent and character of the brew, main characteristics, and food pairings. Notes vintage (2010), Plato (22), and Alc. by Vol. (8.0%) Served in a tulip glass.

A - Ruby brown, with a fair head, moderate retention and lacing with some surface memory.

S - Nose is rather subdued, pleasing but plain. Overall it has a faint Belgian Dark Ale sense to it with hints of fruity caramel.

T - Here is where the brew shines with a difference. Great malty character, with a marked caramel sense early on that opens the door to chocolate and light coffee touches, fruity notes that leave room to a nice range of chillies towards the finish with a lightly spicy riding the sweet finish.

M - Medium-full body with light but adequately tuned carbonation. Creamy and smooth finish, held up by the spicy touch.

D - Pleasing and stimulating serving.

Notes: Nice ale pivoting on its mole character... If one likes that touch this is certainly quite the brew. The nose is a bit of a letdown but flavor and the overall experience of brew pick it up entirely.

Daniellobo, Jul 29, 2010
Photo of donniecuffs
3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Tried this at Savor 2010. Poured a mahogany color, with a thin off-white head, poor retention, and decent lacing. Smelled of chocolate, caramel, and earthiness, as well as pepper and other spices. Certainly tasted of cocoa powder mixed with leaves, with a spicy backbone that led to a peppery, lingering finish. Not as thick as I had expected this to be, but still full-bodied nonetheless, with modest carbonation. Decent spicy beer, but too unique to drink on its own; definitely needs to be paired with some suitably spicy chow.

donniecuffs, Jul 28, 2010
Photo of bruachan
3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

some decent foam to start, but lacing doesn't happen. nice (brownish) red hue. no point for foam but the color is good and any peppers in this recipe probably would have killed retention anyway

very resiny and hot aroma to begin. sorta like dried chilis. nutty, burnt toast, vinegar

woah...generally new flavor set: heavily caramelized flavors up front--fruity. more, and richer, nuttiness. this definitely tastes of dried peppers. a little heat even gets through. some soft chocolate creeps to the finish, but nuttiness dominates. so does fruit, i must say. i wonder what the base beer is here, because i wouldn't expect so much driedfruitiness (cherries) to come from the mole. some, certainly, but not what i taste here. coffee wisps at the finish

my, what a curious beverage. i imagine some think it's a wash, but i find it a great project

bruachan, Jul 27, 2010
Photo of dirtylou
3.28/5  rDev -6.8%
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

dirtylou, Jul 27, 2010
Photo of prototypic
3.25/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

El Mole Ocho pours a dark copper color. It's crystal clear, and looks deep red when held to light. A soft, off-white head covers the top. It's relatively modest at about a finger in depth. Retention was on the shorter side. Lacing was light. Looks alright.

The nose is intriguing. It kicks off with a cocoa-like chocolate scent. Light caramel is noted, but it doesn't smell very sweet. It smells a little herbal or spicy. I suspect that might be the chili presence. It's subtle and honestly doesn't really add anything positive. Alcohol is definitely present. That about wraps it up. It's not very complex. Rather, it smells very average in just about every sense.

The flavor is actually above average. It features a base mix of caramel and chocolate malts. The chocolate variety tastes like cocoa primarily. There's definitely some caramel here, but it doesn't taste very sweet. The herbal/spicy chili flavor is not very good or interesting. It's just there, and again, doesn't add anything positive. Meh. On the positive side, there is a light coffee flavor, and perhaps a little dark fruit. The spicy aspect also seems to broaden with a light cinnamon flavor. Alcohol is in the mix, and tastes just a little too strong. It also has a warming effect on the way down.

El Mole Ocho has a lighter body that feels too thin and insubstantial. Carbonation is light, but it's far too thin to feel smooth. Pretty average. Drinkability is average. The flavor's okay, but it grows a little tiresome in the second half of the bomber. A 12 oz. bottle would've been a better serving size.

New Holland continues its streak of 'hit and miss' with El Mole Ocho. This one's more of a 'miss' in my book. The overall flavor's alright, but that might be a little generous. It's somewhat boozy, and the flavor gets old somewhat quick. I guess it's worth a try if you're interested, but that's about as far as I can go.

prototypic, Jul 23, 2010
Photo of deereless
3.08/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Decent layer of head, deep amber with heavy reds in the beer - 3.50, S: Smells strongly like barbeque chicken, very spicy, lots of chocolate as well as some dark pitted fruits such as plums, I also pick up a slight dark sweetness like raisins or molasses - 3.00, T: Noticeable alcohol burn, dates and figs as well as some chocolate dipped raisins, slightly syrupy, chilies provide a mild prickle on the tongue but it is certainly not a strong flavor, the flavor profile seems to skirt the edges of scotch ale to chili beer - 3.00, M: Medium bodied and somewhat silky - 3.50, D: I really like the concept of this beer, and it is drinkable but it just didn't click with my palate, certainly worth a try - 3.00

deereless, Jul 23, 2010
Photo of atsprings
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
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.

atsprings, Jul 21, 2010
Photo of TMoney2591
3.03/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

I'm not sure of the translation, so I'm gonna go with "the chocolate eight". Something like that. It pours a pretty much clear ruby brown topped by a short-lived finger of off-white micro-foam. The nose is a lambast of burnt cocoa, backed by a strange melange of toasted caramel, roasted marshmallows, and nicely seered salmon. Something here just doesn't seem right. The taste echoes a bit, starting with some burnt gingerbread and overdone banana bread, followed by some caramelized sugars, mole sauce (just as advertised, I guess), and a finish of smoked nutmeg, coffee, dark chocolate, and cinnamon. I have no idea what to think. It's sorta good and sorta horrible. Wow. The body is a hefty medium, with a moderate carbonation and a strangely dry and almost sticky finish. I like the idea behind this, I suppose, but the execution was thoroughly botched. It's almost drinkable, but not very. worth a try if for nothing else than bragging about the experience (and ticking, of course).

TMoney2591, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.05/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

(served in a nonic) A- This deep walnut brown body is dense with an amber glow and a lumpy tan head that last for a good bit. There are strands of tiny bubbles gliding up the sides of the glass.
S- The brown nougat aroma is full with a soft tootsie roll hint and a faint hint of cinnamon and a bright but dark earthiness in the finish.
T- The brown nougat melanoidin flavor has a soft chili hint and a toffee note that comes through as the beer opens up. The finish has a slight tartness with more of a slightly sweet caramel flavor.
M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with no alcohol heat and a very soft carbonation.
D- The nougaty flavors really overpower everything with they become more offensive when it warms. It started out as an interesting beer but by the second glass I just couldn't bring myself to finish it. Novel concept but I just don't think it translated from paper to bottle.

rhoadsrage, Jul 14, 2010
Photo of klewis
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a light brown with a thin head. Cloudy with no lacing.

S: Chocolate and caramel with a light chile aroma.

T: Accurate in 'mole' description. Somewhat sweet with a light heat.

M: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation. Wet and sticky.

D: Decent, but I wasn't as impressed as I expected. Great Divide's Chocolate Yeti is the way to go instead of this beer.

klewis, Jul 09, 2010
Photo of BEERchitect
3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
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.

BEERchitect, Jul 01, 2010
Photo of biggred1
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Coffee colored with a creamy, mocha head that leaves some lace on the glass. Dark chocolate and fresh roasted coffee in the aroma with some chile spice notes. Honey, dark chocolate and warm spice with a coffee like bitterness in the finish. Alcohol is well hidden. Smooth with high carbonation. A really nice and different brew.

biggred1, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to blutt59 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a clear red-amber color with an off-white head. The aroma is heavy on the peppers with some earth, dirt and caramel malts. The flavor is fresh green peppers (jalapenos or serranos) with some coffee, chocolate, caramel and earthy hops. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. The overall flavor of this beer is kind of a mess, but I liked it. Definitely an interesting idea from the brewers at New Holland.

Mora2000, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of scruffwhor
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an orane pekoe tea and cola brown mix. Very little head after the pour and no foam with only bubble rising to the surface once and awhile.

A very foreign, spicey cocoa aroma hits my nostils. Add to that a smokey malt but also maybe a chipotle-like aroma as well.

The taste is a soft spice from smoked peppers. Then some syrupy cocoa adds some darker flavors and a little texture as well. The alcohol adds a punch of warmth that simmers through to the finish.

This is an interesting sipping beer that is best shared with open minded and palated drinking companions.

scruffwhor, Jun 22, 2010
Photo of organicbrewer
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2010

A-Brilliantly clear brown with a low tan head.

S-melanoidins and chocolate. some jalapeno pepper. No hops. Slight ethanol aroma.

T-Malty and carmelly. Milk chocolate, almost like melted ice cream. Slight pepper heat in the back of my mouth (cayanne?). moderate bitterness, no hop flavor. Needs more heat to call itself a mole. Very good otherwise.

M-fairly dense, probably should have picked a cooler day to drink this. Moderate carbonation. No astringency, could use more heat.

D-Good beer (my fault I picked a hot day to drink this), nice balance between malty and chocolate. As I said earlier, this could use more heat. Otherwise it is just chocolate. Still very nice otherwise

organicbrewer, Jun 20, 2010
Photo of jpalarchio
3.8/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very deep red, very "Double Bastard-like" in color; crystal clear with minimal head.

Smell is difficult to identify and describe. Seems somewhat coffee like if I had to associate it to something.

Taste very much backs up the smell. It's good, I just can't put my finger on it.

Overall, probably couldn't handle more than 1-2 glasses of this. It's a speciality beer so I think that's to be expected.

Another quality brew from New Holland; worth trying for sure.

jpalarchio, Jun 19, 2010
New Holland El Mole Ocho from New Holland Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 345 ratings.