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Tröegs Mad Elf - Tröegs Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Tröegs Mad ElfTröegs Mad Elf

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very good

3,553 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,553
Reviews: 1,220
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 15.25%
Wants: 204
Gots: 812 | FT: 24
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:
Beer added by: WilliamPhilaPa on 12-14-2002

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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,553 | Reviews: 1,220
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4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of cfrances33
3.74/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A little Christmas in July comparing 2006 (10/24/06) and 2008 (no date) vintages. Served on 7/14/12 in tulips.

Pour -
2006: Hazy amber brown with some ruby hints. Quarter inch khaki head that recedes to a film
2008: Clearer than 2006, more ruby brown than amber brown. Less head.

Smell -
2006: Cherries, chocolate, and dark fruits
2008: Belgian yeast with cherry. No chocolate this time.

Taste -
2006: Identical to the nose with Belgian yeast mixed in. Very subdued spiciness. Subdued flavors all around honestly.
2008: Belgian spiciness with tart cherries. Maltiness is strong with caramel but not much chocolate.

Mouthfeel -
2006: Very light and subdued. Would never know that it is 11%.
2008: More carbonation and crisp bite. No alcohol.

Overall: Enjoyed the 2008 more, but the beer in general isn't my style

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4/5  rDev +3.4%

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3.25/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

*thanks to stephenjmoore for the extra!*
12.oz bottle -- 2011 vintage -- served into a tulip glass

Pours a sort of burnt copper color. Not at all "ruby red" like the label claims. Lots of clarity to the body. There was about a finger of buttermilk colored head at first, but it quickly dissipates to a tiny ring. Not really any lacing.

This is a strange beer because the severity of my smells gives me a different profile. If I lightly take in air through my nose, then Mad Elf gives off notes of cherry pie, flower petals, and sugarplum (Seriously. Though they aren't dancing in my head or anything). But a full-on deep sniff is way more earthy and yeasty: lots of botanical notes and lots of clove. There's a bit of an oxidized character to the nose too. I wish the two dynamics would come together more seamlessly.

The flavor is very fruity upfront. There's dark cherry for sure, along with the more figs-and-dates dark fruits that you expect from a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. Lots of sweetness. The yeast gives off lots of clove and, like, a flavor that reminds me of the aftertaste of a dish that uses allspice. The yeast helps to balance the sweetness. The finish is the most surprising aspect of this beer. It quickly goes from being fruity and yeasty to a more dry, amber malt-based flavor. This is an amber malt flavor that I want to say I've tasted in other Troegs beers before, but I might only be thinking of Nugget Nectar. But yeah, the finish on Mad Elf is very much like an Amber Ale to me. In fact, this beer is in some respects like an Imperial Amber or something, just with a Belgian yeast strain.

The mouthfeel is pretty light for all of the fruitiness. I realize that the yeast is contributing to the relatively dry finish, so the mouthfeel is accomplishing some positive things. Overall, this is a different take on the style. I appreciate it, but it's not really my thing.

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3.24/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear amber body on a collerish white head.

Fruity nose.

Cherries. Dry finish. Boozy, but what do you expect from an 11% Belgian?

Carbonated, thin-medium mouthfeel. Little disappointing.

Ah it was alright, disappointing. Everything but the nose was less than I was hoping for. Thanks TATURBO.

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Tröegs Mad Elf from Tröegs Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 3,553 ratings.