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Tröegs Mad Elf - Tröegs Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Tröegs Mad ElfTröegs Mad Elf

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

2,859 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,859
Reviews: 1,148
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 15.54%
Wants: 135
Gots: 390 | FT: 20
Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Hop Bitterness (IBU's) : 15
Color (SRM) : Ruby Red
Availability: Seasonal, 12 oz. & 3L bottles, 1/2 and 1/6 kegs (contact your local retailer to pre-order)
Malts: Pilsner, Munich, Chocolate
Hops: Saaz, Hallertau
Yeast: Spicy Yeast
Pennsylvania Honey West Coast Cherries

(Beer added by: WilliamPhilaPa on 12-14-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Tröegs Mad Elf Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,859 | Reviews: 1,148 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Lawnboy33
Lawnboy33

Massachusetts

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

11-14-2011 14:25:01 | More by Lawnboy33
Photo of karlfree
karlfree

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +3.6%

11-14-2011 14:07:35 | More by karlfree
Photo of DaveHack
DaveHack

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

11-14-2011 11:32:05 | More by DaveHack
Photo of Heatwave33
Heatwave33

Florida

4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to a Dogfish Head Snifter.

Color: Amber with an off white head.

Smell: Cherries, hops, malts and honey.

Taste: Cherries, hops, malts, honey, slight alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation, smooth and slighlty dry.

Overall: Very well balanced! Couldn't tell it is 11% ABV. As it warmed up the alcohol was present but still very tastey. A great winter brew. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2011 03:57:25 | More by Heatwave33
Photo of Patrickbrusil
Patrickbrusil

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Love those cherries!

By no means does this brew have any sour components. However, I get bowled over by smooth sweet cherries. Oh sweet sweet cherries. Super smooth.

Slightly hot. Only tiny bitterness at the end. The smell is fruity and floral. Pours a bronze clear orange amber.

Nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2011 03:43:55 | More by Patrickbrusil
Photo of BdubleEdubleRUN
BdubleEdubleRUN

California

4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Tanger for sending me a few of these and one of them being a 08. This review is from doing a side by side with 08 and 11.
The beer pours a amber red color with the 08 being a duller and murkier color with the 11 vibrant and clear. They both have a light tan head that fades quickly and sticks to the glass.
The 11 smell like a cherry and clove bomb, spicy, honey and alcohol. The 08 smells amazing much more balanced then the 11 with the smell a bit candy like.
The taste follows suite to the nose on both beers, the 11 was dominated by belgian flavors with clove, cherry and alcohol. The 08 tastes fantastic, its sweet yet spicy, the clove has faded off a lot revealing a balanced cherry and honey to mesh with the belgian flavors.
They both have a medium body and good carbonation. The 08 in my opinion is leaps and bounds better then the 11, if I get anymore bottles this year I will be putting them away for awhile.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2011 20:41:51 | More by BdubleEdubleRUN
Photo of jmerloni
jmerloni

Massachusetts

4.9/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Mahogany to ruby in coloration, with a small but heavy cream-colored head that laces fairly lacklusterly. But this is one of the only beers whose color I haven't been able to quite describe. It's a color I've never seen and I guess it's special in that way.

S - Incredible smell. Light, FRESH maltiness, dark fruits which you can already tell are perfectly acidic and perfectly sweet in all the perfect, balanced places.

T - Off the charts delicious. Tastes like how an 11% beer should taste without all the alcohol. Achieves a very impressive flavor profile between malt and and hop. Really, really impressed by the flavors here. They're really pleasant. Cherries! Honey malts. Fresh, west coast IPA hops. An incredible mix. Almost just jawdropping.

M - Medium to light bodied, not very carbonated. Incrediblly profession makeup of each sip in this beer, though.

D - One of the only beers I've ever tried that is just unmistakably elite. And one of the only beers I've ever encountered where a brewery just set out to make it great. It doesn't fit any real description nor style. Troegs just set out to make a great, elite beer, and they have with Mad Elf, they absolutely have. Try this if you haven't, and you'll understand what I mean.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2011 15:43:26 | More by jmerloni
Photo of BostonBrewins
BostonBrewins

Massachusetts

4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a not quite clear but not quite hazy deep ruby. Offwhite head dissipates rather quickly. Love the color.

S - Very strong nose, extremely sweet. A wonderful aroma of cherries and honey. Heavenly.

T - A super sweet bomb, not for the weak of heart. Honey and cherries overtones lead the way with undertones of sweet bread and stick buns. Slight metallic twang in the finish, most likely a byproduct of the munich malt. Very boozy.

M - Mouthfeel is syrupy, very brandy like. Definitely a sipper.

) - A perfect choice to be enjoyed after a big winter meal. One of my favorite winter beers.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2011 23:43:32 | More by BostonBrewins
Photo of MDDMD
MDDMD

Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-red amber in color with a off-white head which quickly dissipates, minimal lacing

S-malt, honey and cough syrup aroma

T-sweet malt and yeast flavor with cherry cough syrup finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, alcohol not obvious given 11% content

O-a holiday ale with good flavor and balance

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2011 00:47:48 | More by MDDMD
Photo of MicEp
MicEp

New Jersey

3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this bottle according to instructions, down the middle of the glass to unleash the cherry aroma. It poured a very nice deep red color. The nose was not what i expected, very little cherry.

The taste also did not really exude cherry as i expected but it did start with a very nice smooth and clean malt taste followed by spice and ended with faint honey notes.

For an 11% abv beer it is very smooth and the alcohol is hidden very well behind the spice and honey after taste.

All in all Mad Elf is a very good beer and I would highly recommend anyone to give it a try around the holidays. Its around $16 a six pack but if you can find a single bottle its a must buy.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2011 21:35:57 | More by MicEp
Photo of Hopfenpeter
Hopfenpeter

Maryland

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

Bought this bottle as a start for the Christmas season. It poured a clear amber/mahogany gold with little white head building about half a finger high. Little retention and little lacing.
The smell is of cherries, malt and spice.
Testing the beer this flavors are confirmed in order. First the cherry fruit flavor, being met by malt and honey notes, than some decent hops and spice to finish the beer. Good balance and very drinkable. The alcohol is noticeable, but well hidden! Great Winterbeer!

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2011 03:47:17 | More by Hopfenpeter
Photo of Crossmd
Crossmd

Virginia

4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured 55 degrees Fahrenheit into a Dalmore whisky glass. Smudged born date.

Poured a lucid tea color or light ruby red. Slight head, dissipated quickly. No lacing to speak of.

Smells of belgian yeast, bananas and a hint of cherry. Not well projected.

Taste is a just slightly tart, effervescent blend of spiced fruit and honey. The balance between honeyed sweetness and cherried tart really is perfect here, and I can't believe that the blend works as well as it does though. I can see some however, potentially finding this a little bit like cough syrup. It stops just short of synthetic for me, but more sensitive palates or supertasters may have a hard time with this one. Plenty effervescent, lot of boozy cherry in on the background, as those tertiary flavors take off into the drydown.

Overall, really a unique beer that stands alone next to a slew of dark, stouty winter seasonals. I started off not liking it initially, as it was just so vast different from anything that I was used to, but working my way through the bottle really had me enjoying it at the end. Overall, a fantastic offering.

90.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2011 23:42:27 | More by Crossmd
Photo of josefnewsong
josefnewsong

New York

4.8/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a seasonal favorite of mine...just picked up my first sixer of the winter so I figured a review was in order...
A - red, clear, dark, little head
S - cherries, honey, boozyness, belgian yeast
T - all of the above, and more...this beer is more than the sum of its parts. Cherries dominate and honey is behind with alcohol present but concealed just enough...but there is something else that I can only describe of as 'mad elf' flavor. Perfect.
M - a bit syrupy but aside from that is medium bodied, which works perfectly for this beer...
O - exceptional brew. Might need to grab another...11%? really?

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2011 05:12:19 | More by josefnewsong
Photo of justintcoons
justintcoons

Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a brilliant ruby red with a thin head that dissipates quickly to a whispy head. Thin webbed lacing and moderate carbonation.

N: Clove, banana and booze. Cherry and honey in the background.

T: Fig, honey and candy sugar upfront. Dates, banana, horse blanket, cherry Jolly Rancher and tobacco mid-palette. Coriander, clove and peppercorn in the finish. Sweet and sugary throughout.

M: Medium-full bodied, chewy, smooth, sticky and dry.

O: The booze is apparent but it's not too overpowering. Very sweet and sugary. Really showcases the Belgian yeast strain and candy sugars. Honey and cherry just make an appearance in the background.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 23:38:29 | More by justintcoons
Photo of ciachef1212
ciachef1212

Pennsylvania

3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a very interesting beer. Almost red in color with tones of carbonation. Smells of spices from the belgian yeast and slight cherry notes. The flavors are of cherries and spice and everything nice. Couldn't tell it is 11% ABV. This is a really different beer and I really like it. Be careful for 11% it is really drink able.

Cheers,

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 20:38:14 | More by ciachef1212
Photo of FLOglida
FLOglida

New Jersey

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

Troegs is by far one of my favorite breweries, they are consistent with their beers and they know how to do things different. The mad elf is no exception. Very strong with booze and fruit in both the nose and the taste. I usually dont like the overly fruity beers but whatever type of cherries they used in this are amazing. At 11 percent you can definately get warmed up by this one. i love winter warmers, i love beer
CHEERS

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 17:40:25 | More by FLOglida
Photo of SpdKilz
SpdKilz

Illinois

3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A big thanks to DSlim71 for this great extra. Cheers!

Appearance – Pours a very clear ruby color into a tulip with just a hint of head and slight lacing.

Smell – Definite honey, cherries, spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon, and slight clove. Finishes with a sweet caramel aroma.

Taste – Interesting. The Belgian characteristics are immediately apparent. Cherries are prevalent as is the honey (which makes the finish quite dry). Bready malts, slight tartness, and a hint of alcohol.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, moderate carbonation.

Overall – A decent Belgian strong ale. It kind of reminds me of Three Philosophers (but sadly not quite as good). A solid beer, and one that is keeping me nice and warm on this chilly night.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 03:12:54 | More by SpdKilz
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

3.55/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Getting a head start on Christmas I guess.

A real nice ruby and clear red body, but with a very fast and falling foamy off tan brown head. Lots of noticeable sounding carbonation as well. Barely a collar manages to hang on shortly after and leaves barely a whisp of a top.

Nose is big on Belgian like candi sweetness and some sense of cough drop cherry. A real sense that something sweet is coming.

A kind of juicy light jammy cherry sense on the palate, mixing in with a little bit of bready malts. Surprisingly not as sweet as I thought it might be coming from the nose. Texture actually feels pretty solid, this very nice juicy body almost jammy.

Overall not too bad, nothing real crazy that I am getting excited about though either. For eleven percent abv, it doesn't feel like a boozy mess or hard to drink, which is a nice surprise. However, I am not finding myself really drawn to this.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 00:39:00 | More by smakawhat
Photo of eslemarc
eslemarc

Ohio

3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber in a Mad Elf tulip glass.

The beer pours with an off-white cream colored head, maybe a finger tall at most, deep amber color and fully transparent with visible carbonation. Little lacing from each sip.

There is a strong scent of cherries and a little honey sweetness. Some alcohol is present, similar to the alcohol presence in a red wine. Slight hints of a malt breadiness with a clear hop balance to keep from being too sweet.

Relatively lighter mouthfeel than I would have imagined, a fair carbonation leads to a clear taste of cherries and maybe some banana. Tastes clearly boozy, but deceptive to the 11%abv.

The beer seems more like a digestif, very comforting and warming post dinner to substitute a port wine. The sweetness would work well with dessert. A fine beer as a great winter warmer.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2011 17:52:20 | More by eslemarc
Photo of TheMultiYeast
TheMultiYeast

Pennsylvania

3.51/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a clear dark amber/ruby with a small white head that fades away. Some spotty lacing.

Smell is dominated by sweetness with and holiday spices. Cherries are pretty strong with a hint of booze.

Taste is pretty sweet as well. Honey, cherries and more spices dominate with very little bitterness and alcohol.

Mouthfeel is a bit sticky and syrupy.

This seems to be one of the most accessible Holiday beers because it's sweet and high in alcohol. A bit too syrupy for me.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2011 17:06:37 | More by TheMultiYeast
Photo of aorloski
aorloski

Massachusetts

3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a very rich and lavish deep amber color. About a fingers worth of off white head on this one and great carbonation at 11%

Smell - Smells like an over sweetened quad, in a good way. Ripe fruit, cherries, raisins, some brown sugar in the backbone.

Taste - I must say, at 11% the alcohol is hidden ridiculously well. An incredibly sweet beer but once again in the best sense of the word. Cherries and dark fruits dominate this one, absolutely no bitterness just all sweet malts, molasses and some carmel notes. Great stuff.

Mouthfeel - Whoa this one coats the mouth, after drinking one the flavors seem to just sit in your cheeks.

Overall - This is a very well rendered beer, it is missing some of the "funk" from a belgian style dark but i dont think this is intended to be like that. This tastes more like an over sweetened quad but an incredibly delicious beer for sure.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2011 00:12:12 | More by aorloski
Photo of railman
railman

New York

4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love this beer! The color the label everything! Picked this up after a suggestion last year.
Happened to see it on display at a local beer distributor. Had to get it.

Poured from a 12oz bottle. No freshness date.

This brew pours a nice burnt amber / ruby red color.
Virtually no head or lacing noticed. Almost no carbonation.

Smells a little on the sweet side with little cherry on the nose. Almost no hops detected.

Tastes sweet but not overdone. Minimal cherry flavor.

Feels somewhat syrupy but again not overdone. Medium to full bodied brew.
I really like this brew. Too bad its 11% cause I can suck these down all night.

Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2011 23:58:52 | More by railman
Photo of kennylopez
kennylopez

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

Appearance: a slightly hazy reddish dark amber color that pours about a finger thick worth of fine white head that fades to practically a film and leaves tiny spot of lacing.

Smells: almost like a barleywine in my opinion, but a lot sweeter. There is a slight honey smell but it is mellow with the cherries.

Tastes: I taste a lot more honey than I smelled, but it is sweet and cherry note come through the Belgian yeast backbone.

Mouthfeel: for weighting in at 11% this ale is quite a punch...at least a lot of solid little jabs(every sip) because it is easy on the burn and well carbonated despite the appearance.

Overall: I picked up a six pack and enjoyed the first couple, I was going to see how the rest age, but I am going to buy another case because it will disappear and I know I will drink it for the holidays.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2011 22:12:05 | More by kennylopez
Photo of Scourge07
Scourge07

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured into pint glass from bottle. Had about a finger of head that dissipated down a bit, but maintained retention. It's not as red colored as it appears in some of the pictures online. It's more of a rich, clear copper color.

S: Spicy yeast - very Belgian. Very sweet smell with a touch of honey. Cherries not as apparent, in my opinion.

T: Honey, sweet malts/yeast. Slight hint of cherries in the aftertaste. Very sweet with practically no bitterness.

M: Easy drinkin' for 11% Only a slight alcohol burn in the aftertaste. Full/syrupy mouthfeel

O: This is definitely a great Belgian-style ale, and perfect for the holiday's. However, I was expecting the honey and cherry flavors to stand out more, since they were advertised on the bottle. Unfortunately, they were quite subtle. Not something I would buy again, but definitely worth trying!

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2011 04:56:34 | More by Scourge07
Photo of Koufax21
Koufax21

New Mexico

3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 12 oz. Bottle into a snifter. It pours a beautiful transparent ruby liquid with 1/2" head that quickly disappears. Smells of spice; clove is what I’m getting with some peppery accent. Tastes of sweet fruits. Clove, fig, and cherry. The cherry was not as pronounced as I imagined it. The honey adds another layer of complexity. Very smooth for 11%. Mildly carbonated and medium bodied. This is definitely a cold weather beer. After 6 oz. I can feel the warming effects.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2011 04:40:26 | More by Koufax21
Tröegs Mad Elf from Tröegs Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 2,859 ratings.