Jopen Koyt - Jopen Bier BV Haarlem

Not Rated.
Jopen KoytJopen Koyt

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BA SCORE
89
very good

82 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 82
Reviews: 52
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 11.03%
Wants: 13
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Jopen Bier BV Haarlem visit their website
Netherlands

Style | ABV
Scottish Gruit / Ancient Herbed Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-12-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 82 | Reviews: 52
Reviews by freneticamnesic:
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep burgundy with a big fluffy off white head,wow the aromas are quite a treat cinnamon and clove dominate with a nice underlying cherry fruitiness both intermingle very well together.Seems to be quite complex,nutmeg and cloves really show up with a real grape juice flavor showing up with just a hint of green herbs in the finish.I have to say I have never had a beer taste so much like grape before it was rather pleasant.My second gruit and I really enoyed this one.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a chalice)
best before 03/05/09 on cork
A- This beer pours a dense brown body with a garnet glow at the base and a thin wispy head that is soon gone and a slow microcarbonation that glides up the sides of the glass.

S- The brown malt aroma has some dry toffee and wet wood characteristics with walnuts and cherry stones to follow.

T- The dry woody brown malt flavor has some dry toffee and cherry stone flavors to follow. There is just a touch of sweetness in the finish with a soft green herbal and tea berry hint in the finish. The pot caramel and cola notes come through in the brown malt flavor as the beer opens up.

M- The medium-light mouthfeel has a gentle fizz and no alcohol heat and a slightly watery texture that turns a bit slippery in the finish.

O- This is a great blend of characters with some faint flanders red hints and some nice bock qualities all come together. If I would have seen the date before I bought it I would have passed on it but it was quite a surprise to taste this good given the age on it.

Photo of Sammy
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Wine colour with a little lace. Light mouthfeel. Aged past expiry by eight months, and still quite drinkable, and likely mellowed. Tough cork to remove. Herbal and spicey, with clove and pepper, cinammon, good dark fruit soaked in there. Thanks Paul.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a gruit, brewed without hops. It relies on herbs and spices to balance the sweetness of the malt. Cloudy. Brownish in color with a very fine and creamy 1/4" tan head that holds very, very well and leaves some good lace. The body is medium with a very fine effervescence that makes it quite soft in the mouth. The aroma is fairly full with dark fruit, cherries, tartness, a lightly peppery spiciness, soft caramel maltiness, and some herbal qualities that I can't readily define. The herbs do give a drying quality and the beer is well rounded. Some fruity & herbal maltiness lingers in the finish, but it's not sticky as the tartness balances it. The alcohol is well hidden, only emerging toward the end of the serving. A very unique, interesting, and rewarding beer. Quite enjoyable. Much more balanced and mellow than I'd expected. Absolutely worth trying.

Photo of sfprint
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Exp: 3/2013
A: Burst out of the bottle when I opened it. A medium dark brown with a soda like head.
S: Like a sweet cola, perhaps more fruity in a way, but it's very soda like.
T: Although the alcohol is detectable and even makes it slightly medicinal, it's very much like a cola slurpee with perhaps just a dab of cherry slurpee mixed in. Fairly sweet, but also delicious.
M: Along the lines of a sharp sting, but not so intense. Otherwise like a crisp cola.
O: Like I've mentioned 10 times, soda/cola like. It's very nice, although barely resembles a beer.

Photo of edchicma
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber with a quickly dissipating head. Nose is a blend of fruit, wine, malt and grassy elements...very nice. Tatse is excellent. Malt and alcohol on the front..belnding into a lightly biiter finish. Mouthfeel is suprising light for the high abv. Very easy on the drinkability scale, considering the high abv also. Some qualities of a Double...but without the abundance of port-wine like qualities. A very nice change of pace.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.56/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown amber. Minimal head and no lacing. Nice dark Belgian aroma. Tasty dark malts with nutty flavors, dark fruit and unidentifiable, but pleasant herbs. Nice malty middle and finish. Medium bodied with creaminsess. Delicious. I really like this beer. Excellently integrated and wonderful.

Photo of RuudJH
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer that's brewed, not with hops, but with a mix of herbs, of which 'Myrica gale' is the main (and for a long time controversial) ingredient.
A 15th century receipe.
Oats based, stated on the bottle label.

A: Dark brown colour, cloudy, with a beige head that's pretty good. It really looks like a stout.
S: This beer has a gardensmell to it. flowers, herbs. Also a bit of coffee and bread.
T: Not a very robust beer, a bit spicy, roasted grains. and herbs.
M: This beer goes down easy. The yeast is masked pretty well by the mixture of herbs.
D: It's interesting to try this one, and imagine what people would think of it 6 centuries ago.

Photo of rallison
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at least 2 years old, possibly up to 5 years old.

Pours an amber red with a 1/2 finger white head that diminishes and leaves no lacing.

Smells very much of herbs - medicinal, to an extent - with some vinegar and spiciness (likely from the herbs as well). Quite interesting. The vinegar notes either preclude a very interesting beer, or possibly an over-the-hill, horrible bottle. Let's find out..

Tons of herbs in here. I can't quite pinpoint them, but some of them most definitely lean toward medicinal. Somewhat spicy, but not over the top. Hints of red wine, dried fruits and caramel. Finishes with herbal spice.

Nicely carbonated with a fair richness.

Recommended. I can definitely see this being a beer with quite a history. I'd be curious to know how close this comes to the original versions. Unique - I like that.

Photo of metter98
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at Jopenkerk, Haarlem, Netherlands

A: The beer is very dark brownish red in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a half a finger high beige head that died down a bit but hardly faded away.
S: Moderate aromas of herbs are present in the nose - rosemary seems to stand out in particular along with some hints of juniper.
T: The taste is similar to the smell but the flavors are much stronger and rosemary really seems to stand out in particular.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is a very flavorful and easy to drink gruit beer that is also a little more fuller bodied compared to other beers in the style.

Photo of Rastacouere
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Chestnut brown, generous 1 inch light brown head, diminishing. Surprisingly cerealic aroma, like sweet wheat or oat cereals with a touch of brown sugar, accompanied with clove spiced toasted bread. On the tongue, the same show keeps on with that buckwheat pancakes alike malt worthy of praise. Very bready, incredibly well-hidden alcohol. Great alcohol hiding. Subtle yeast component. Fading balancing leafy bitterness. Medium body fits well. Well built.

Photo of qrazvan
2.83/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Couldn't really feel the herbs aroma.

Photo of Absumaster
3.72/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a gruit beer and is a replicate of an ancient beer.

Appearance is not very good, red/brown with little head and not much carbonation.

Smell is nice, earthy with a strong caramellic smell and some chocolate.

Taste is caramel, tobacco, candy sweets and slightly sweet. A good maltiness and some flowery and spicy tastes. Could this be the gagel that I taste. I don't know how this tastes, but for me it is clear that this beer is really something special. The other tastes in here are so special that I don't know where they are coming from, but I don't mind, taste is good.

Photo of jwc215
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cork-caged 750 ml bottle - Best before 08/05/09 printed on cork.

Pours dark brown with a light tan head that stays.

The smell is spicy - nutmeg, cinnamon, earthy herbs, and a strong caramel/toffee. The spices rennder an earthiness that takes the place of hops very well. More than pleasantly surprised here!

The taste is of caramel/toffee with spicy earthy bitterness (and without hops!) Anise, nutmeg, cinnamon spiciness blends so well and mesh with the toffeeish malt, yet stops short of being over-spiced, and allows the maltiness to dominate, but in a balanced way. Alcohol is not noticeable in taste, though becomes quite warming after half-way through the 750 bottle. Earthy, complex, yet not overwhelming, with a nice maltiness. It has a creamy, medium to full body. Drinks dangerously smoothly, though slows down to a very sippable sipper! This is unique, interesting, and well-done!

Photo of safaricook
4.46/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this at the Marqt on Overtoom close to the Leidsplein in Amsterdam. Poured it into the original Jopen Stemglass.

Two finger of beige head reduces slowly to a thin layer, nice lacing; clear bright ruby to amber body with lots of carbonation visible

strong smell dark malt, yeast and dark fruits, some distant coffee, vanilla, really pleasant!

taste is a reluctant maltiness and a bit more towards the coffee, some sour ting on the tongue as well; aftertaste is first a bit metallic but soon moves towards a smooth bitterness that origins probably from Myrica gale a herb that was added to the beer.

head is velvety almost creamy; carbonation tickles on tongue and throat; aside the carbonation the beer is rather oily, very smooth on the tongue.

I had this beer before and remembered it to be good, but in fact it is really good, excellent. I usually criticize the Jopen brewery for having too many different types that are all somehow special but not really balanced and just not great. However, with this recipe from 1407 they are doing everything right

Photo of ntillemans
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Reddish brown, somewhat cloudy, nice three fingers of head. Nice lacing on the glass.

S: Smells fruity, like fig

T: Fruity, spicy taste, alcohol...detect anise (but not overbearing)...tatses like the traditional gruit spices are present. It's a little thin after the initial burst of flavor (where the alcohol jumps to the fore) and before the aftertaste. If not for that momentary thinness, I would have given the taste of this the highest mark.

M: There's a nice effervessence and creaminess. I was expecting less body, head and cabonation from a gruit. So, well done.

D: I split the 750 ml bottle with my wife. I would have finished the bottle if I were on my own. I'll definitely try this one again.

Photo of mytireisfat
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P: 25 fl oz tall brown bottle.

A: One finger brownish head that dissipates quick. Brown in color.

S: This was a strange one. get a sweetness out of it. and spices... also i thought maybe getting a cola flavor out of it. and a teriyaki smell too... kind of weird.

T: Sweetness, chocolate, a bit flat (in a good way), spices.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation.

D: I really liked this beer. first gruit beer ive had, so its hard to judge. but i liked it. would love to buy again.

Photo of goodbyeohio
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

dark, dangerous pour from a 750. tight, even, one-finger head that has not diminished in the slightest over 15 minutes of in-glass warming. pumpkin-orange highlights and a few random floaties.

smells soapy.. green apple hints and smells like rock candy tastes. very fresh in its fruitiness, with a yeasty smell reminiscent of champagne. very busy in the nose. approaching mulled wine in it sweet spice complexity.

very carbonated and heavy with alcohol-soaked dark fruits. very belgian for a dutch gruit. green apple continues and settles in a pool of brandy. cherries appear in essence, maltiness adds a rich sweetness and some thickness to counter the bubbly nature. grassy finish with some noticeable funk attributed to possible bacterials or sherry-like age.

not the best example of a true gruit that i've ever had, more like a belgian ale. still, ill recommend this as a suitable starter beer for those intimidated by heavily spiced concoctions. makes room for depth and complexity while offering a solid malty brew in the background. good.

Photo of superspak
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, 18IC bottle code. Pours very hazy and cloudy reddish brown color with a 2 finger foamy khaki head with poor retention, that reduces to a ring of lace. No lacing at all on the glass. Aromas of apple skin, pear, caramel, raisin, molasses, herbal, floral, pepper, clove, earth, anise, and yeast spiciness. Very nice and interesting aromas with good balance and complexity. Really wasn’t sure what to expect. Taste of big apple, pear, pepper, caramel, toast, molasses, raisin, herbal, floral, earth, clove, and yeast spiciness. Lingering notes of light fruit, raisin, caramel, molasses, pepper, herbal, toast, earth, clove, and yeast spices on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and flavor complexity; good malt/spice balance; almost zero cloying flavors present on the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium body; with a fairly slick, prickly, and crisp mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a small warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice imperial gruit ale. This was very interesting and I wasn’t sure what to expect from it. There is nice flavor complexity and balance; and it is quite smooth to sip on. Very enjoyable and unique offering.

Photo of paterlodie
3.96/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

What a great nose, to say there must be "gagel" in this beer! Strange but a good change of nose every now and then cant harm and this one is exceptional. Too bad there is hardly any carbon dioxide and with it of course hardly any foam. Further a full malty and spicy bitter taste with a bitter aftertaste.
Too bad for for foam and mouthfeel but all in all most certainly one I go for again!

Photo of GuinnessSmurf
2.96/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, dark orange/red. There is a thick, low hover of creamy head.

Smell: Very clean, flowery smell - lots of sweet herbs coupled with a green tea and honey.

Taste: The onset of this beer comes on with lots of spark and vibrance, powered by a sharp fruit and sugar that bubbles its way up to the roof of your mouth. As the onset fades, a less robust lemon and tea flavor enters. There is a small hint of ground black pepper at the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Its a little bubbly, but nice. It seems to mellow it pretty quickly once it is in the mouth, but the its carbonation does fill the mouth more than the wetness or saturation of the flavor

Drinkability: As far as gruits go, this one seems to me more artificial. Actually, it makes me rethink how well crafted earlier gruits might truly have been.

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

Now this one is a *turn up* for the books!
A traditional Dutch Gruit Bier. My First!

A beer brewed by a collective group under the leadership of a chap called Michel Ordeman, who recreates traditional beers from the Haarlem area (no not that one!, the one with a double ‘a’ in the province of North Holland, Netherlands). Jopen "Brewery" BV does NOT have their own brewery, but they do recreate Medieval & Middle Age recipes, & have them Contract Brewed (they have been brewed at the Halve Maan, Van Steenberge & others since 1993). The recipe for Jopen Koyt originates from 1407. BTW, Jopen is the old Dutch name for a Beer Cask.

Comes in a 750ml tall, thin neck bottle. ‘½In-½Out’ Cork & Wired Caged. The Cork was a ****er to get out, I had to resort to pliers to get a good grip! Huge expulsion, with lots of slow moving gray steamy gun smoke.

Massive thick tan head, large expanse at first made it difficult to pour. It settles to a thick pillowy ½” which lasts, & lasts. Great lacing. Dark-brown, when back-lit it has a slight cloudy appearance & a red-orange hue at times.

The aroma is very enticing. Where to start; peppery dark spices, fruity malts, some grain, dark fruits and the alcohol definitely comes through in the *very* aromatic nose towards the end. I got Aniseed & Curacao Oranges in the background – its feint, but it is there.

This is very good. It’s amazing that a beer with NO hops, and just Oats and Spices to balance the Malts works SO well – it tastes SO good. This has quite a complex body & layered taste profiles.

Finishes with a mildly warming, fruity alcohol finish that lingers. Big in the mouthfeel, well rounded and smooth drinking, it kicks ass, but it is subtle in its stature. The finish has support from the 8.5% alcohol, but equally from the spices, which leaves the tongue with an aniseed and licorice tingle at times.

This 75cl Bottle cost me $8. Probably one of the most expensive Dutch beers I have ever purchased. But Damn, it was well worth it!

Oats, Wheat & Barley in the Mash with a Gruit of several Spices. Hopheads may not even understand this beer (which may confirm the rumors) – how could they when there are NO Hops? I know, NO Hops – yet this is excellent!!! Unique & WELL Worth a Try.

I must get some more of this beer for my Beer C-ellar-upboard.
Can't wait to age this one!

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Ok, so I'm a hop-head and I'll try to keep this review somewhat objective.

Pours a dark amber/crimson, fairly clean and clear. No much of a head; off-tan about 1/2 finger. It does look a bit flat, no pop in the cork, and this harms the feel of it later on.

Sweet aroma, malty yet not husky. Fruits and booze, non-sweet

Tastes very sweet at first, but it dies down considerably, which is good. it has a syrupy feel at first, but that fades away too...more carbonation would have been better. Fruits and sweet caramel, sweet bread, spice, herbal and floral--but earthy floral.

Overall, this is a nice beer. Didnt' think I'd drink the whole 750ml bottle...but I did.

Photo of yen157
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Let me start by saying LBB wasn’t kidding about the cork. :-o

Beer poured with a tan, rocky head that resembled hardened, molded foam. The beer itself was cloudy and reddish amber. The nose consisted of fresh granny smith apples, but in a dusty cellar kind of way. Some brambly berries emerge, both in flavor and tartness, as the beer warms. The alcohol becomes apparent, too. It certainly was herbal in a wonderful kind of way. Nothing too over-the-top like once could easlity imagine a gruit being. Bready malt, slightly fruity, and a little toasty with a tea-like quality on the finish.

Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A very different beer this is enjoyable nonetheless. From the start to the finish this very different in taste and aroma. The look is dark thick amber with a nice tan head and lacing. The sweetness is balanced here by the fruity spices which appear in the nose as well. Cherry sourness, or rather, tartness seems to play off the maltiness in a way that limts the malt power. The feel is different and a bit hard to describe, but good just the same. Limited drinkability, I believe this to be an infrequent sipping beer, perhaps nicely paired with a dessert dish.

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Jopen Koyt from Jopen Bier BV Haarlem
89 out of 100 based on 82 ratings.