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Tröegs Mad Elf - Tröegs Brewing Company

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Tröegs Mad ElfTröegs Mad Elf

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very good

3,551 Ratings
very good

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Ratings: 3,551
Reviews: 1,218
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 15.25%
Wants: 204
Gots: 810 | 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: 3,551 | Reviews: 1,218
Photo of Infamous7100
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a near copper, mostly clear with a nice two finger head. Lighter than most Belgian darks.
S: some dark fruit and certainly cherries. I am getting hints of honey, but I belieive its being a tad overshadowed by the malt. Not as much spice or evergreen notes as most holiday ales.
T: follows closey to tne nose. Not quite as much dark fruit flavor as most traditonal Belgian darks, but still very good. A tad more boozy/sweet than one might like, but I can't complain.
M: Lighter than one would think and not nearly as harsh as an an 11% abv would lead you to believe. Its a sipper, but it is smooth.
O: a great beer, not just a great holiday beer. It is expensive, but worth it. Age one if you get the chance.

Photo of nickthetick
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a clear reddish amber into a Mad Elf tulip with two fingers of tan head that hang around a bit and leave little lacing.

S: cherries, vanilla, caramel, honey, plums and light citrus.

T: mirrors the nose well. A lot of cherries, plums and berries are right up front. The sweetness of the honey and caramel does not go unnoticed and makes the tart berry and cherry more recognizable. There is an alcohol sting.

MF: medium body, just a bit chewy, light effervescence and just a tad warm.

O: a great beer! I love it when this comes out, I buy it every year.

Photo of Derek_Besly
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of SixpointJMH
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

served cellar/room temperature per suggestions on this site, and boy did it make a difference. pours an amber/ruby colour with a thin, slightly tan head that has a moderate stickiness to it. the smell is loaded with cherry, but because of this it had a bit too much of a cherry medicine smell at times. i thought the cherry was going to have to be toned down a bit, especially before sipping this one, but at a warmer temperature, their taste within the beer is just right. much more subdued than in the the smell. ther eis also a mild alcohol flavouring throughout which provides a nice warming effect. as the beer itself warms the taste gets that much better. the finish is slighty dry and this is just tasty all around. a ver yeasy to drink brew for 11% abv. it's a bit too sweet to drink more than one or two per sitting, but i'd definitely sample it again in the future.

Photo of Patrickbrusil
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
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.

Photo of dsshuck
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I assume this brew was last winters release. No date on the bottle to indicate otherwise.

A - orangish brown in color with a small off white head
S - sweet almost vinous brown sugar malts, honey and cherries.
T - similar to the aroma but with a honey softened effect. Kind of like the edge was taken off and an injection of warmth added. Quite tasty.
M - medium to full bodied, mildly carbonated smooth
D - at 11% this one hides the abv deceptively well. Aging nicely and was great as an evening relaxing drink.

I would buy this every season. quite a treat.

Photo of chadspivey
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

thanks to akorsak for the growler shipped overnight. poured into my st. bernardus oversized goblet.

A: pours a clear red amber color. Head dissipates really fast, but I like the way it settles, with the bigger bubbles.

S: dark fruits and belgian yeast. spices, dark maltiness

T: grapes, alcohol, belgian yeast, very faint apples. dark maltiness present .

M: medium body. Would have expected it to be thicker considering the class of beer and the alcohol content. still seems to compliment the taste really nicely. slightly velvety.

D: pretty sweet beer, but I'm getting pretty buzzed off just the one. If it werent for the drunkenness, I'd have more.

couldn't decide between 4.0 and 4.5 on the taste. I think I changed it about 4 times. I decided it was closer to 4.5.

Photo of smi69
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of shtiffirg
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of cichief
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beers a deep amber, with a thin off-white head. It smelled of fruit, although cherries and honey are used in the brewing, I couldn't say it was cherry. It tasted fruity, sweet and warm. It was smooth, not at all over carbonated. At 11% alcohol, I wouldn't drink too much of it.

Photo of Ngntjp
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of GoalieRon33
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Medium brown with a reddish hue. Clearish, until it warms then becomes a little cloudy.

S- decently malty, somewhat sweet. Definate honey tones

T- Deep, spicy taste. Cherries, Honey, and other great sweetness propel this beer to the next level. Slight alcohol burn towards the end.

M- Not too heavy, but just right. A ittle thickness towards the end of a bottle. I don't reccomend more than 2 of these.

D- Great beer that is so easy to drink. Being 11%, it is a real wallop of alcohol, but it is barely detectable until the post drinking warming feeling.

Photo of lackenhauser
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an absolutely gorgeous reddish amber color.Very slight head and carbonation.Slight aroma of cherries-some citrus,malt and a backround yeasty-ness.Malty sweetness dominates the flavor with a hint of cherries.The 11% ABV is very well disguised.Wonderful mouthfeel-really smooth and full bodied.What a great beer I must say.I have not been a Troegs fan in the past-just didnt think they were as good and "special" as some of the others out there.I'll take that back with this beer however.Some of this will definately be getting "laid down"-ENJOY!!!

Photo of Patzi102
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of BeerRun13
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clear reddish orange. Has a small ring of a head and little lacing.
Spices and estery alcohol. A touch of pumpkin spice or nutmeg?
Nice flavor. Fruity malt backbone. Low on the hops but has some other spice inside although I don't know if it matches the aroma. The alcohol shows through easily. Well balanced and tasty.
Medium to heavy body. Smooth and creamy. Alcohol warms the palate all the way to the stomach.
Good drinkability. I can see how this could be a holiday favorite.

Photo of steorn
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The mad elf enters the glass.A beautiful pour,red-hued,lovely. With an off white head full of active little bubbles.The scent of yeast, malt, and a restrained cherry sweetnes.I think I should taste it.A nice honey seetness encased in alcohol.Awonderful creamy mouthfeel.The cherry arrives ,gently though still accompanied by alcohol.The finish is nice ,slightly sour, fading gently away.This is nice.
Although eleven percent the Elf is amazingly drinkable.I had expected something more intense but instead have a rounded entertaining holiday ale in the glass( now more than half empty):)
Kudos to the one and only Feloniousmonk for introducing me to my new mad friend.

Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22-ounce bottle into a pint glass.

A: Ruby red-amber in color with good clarity and sparse carbonation building to a two-finger head of dense, white foam which left some decent lacing.

S: Whiffs of honey, cherries, spicy yeast, fruity esters and phenol alcohol in the nose.

T: Very smooth and clean malt bill with spicy and grainy wheat and yeast flavors underlying the malty sweetness. Honey is soft and drying while the semisweet and tart cherries add a bit to the fruitiness. No alcohol really noted, which makes this brew sort of dangerous at 11% ABV. Nice, spicy, somewhat bitter, cherry Tussin finish.

M: Full-bodied clean and smooth with a very quaffable finish.

D: A nice, spiced strong Belgian ale for the holidays. Very clean, smooth and spicy flavors blend nicely with the hints of honey and cherry. The seemingly subdued alcohol also makes it a dangerous brew, as noted earlier because of the ABV. It might be a bit much to handle all day, but after dinner, it's a nice treat.

Photo of garuda
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle, 2011 vintage

A - Brilliant cherry red, clear, a white soapy head at first that dissipates quickly, leaves little lacing.

S/T - Big yeasty nose, with some of the honey sweetness as well, and a touch of a rusty coin on the back end. Taste follows the nose, with a more pronounced sweet cherry mid palate, finishing with slightly tart cherry, honey sweetness, and a bit of booze. As it warms, it gets a similar to a cherry cordial.

M - Medium body, surprising considering the abv, with a lively medium carbonation, finishes mostly dry.

O - One of the beers that get me hooked on craft. I always look forward to its release each year. I still find this to be a solid beer, which I can't say about many of the beers I once thought were good.

Photo of Mertzy81
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours a murky brownish-red with a decent head of off-white, coarse bubbles. No retention or lacing.

S: Aggressive nose of syrupy cherries. Hints of vinous grape, a bit of lactic acid, and sugary fruit juice.

T: Juicy cherries hit the palate, along with a smooth blend of spices, sweet and grainy malt, and Belgian yeast. Hints at cloying cough syrup but is pulled back by the malt and yeast. Bit of a smooth, medicinal honey sweetness. Fruity Belgian esters mix well with the cherries and honey. A bit of alcohol in the finish, but it's barely perceivable.

M: Relatively full body and fine carbonation.

O: This definitely grew on me as the glass drained. Can get a little cloying, but ultimately it's pretty balanced, and the hiddenness of the alcohol is remarkable for 11%.

Photo of watermelonman
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This poured to a nice and surprisingly light amber with hints of yellow and red. The head quickly reduced to a ring and left minimal lace.

Flavors are of light malt up front and quickly switch to a bit of cherry with just a hint of honey. The smell is decent enough but the taste is quite good, especially as it warms. It's alarmingly easy to drink for the alcohol content.

Photo of silver0rlead
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a somewhat indistinct hazy amber with a thin off-white head that dissapates quickly. The aroma is intriguing, with notes of cherry, honey, belgian yeast, some chocolate, toasted bread, alcohol and some mineraly hops. The flavor is surprisingly subtle for a beer of this magnitude, with notes of cherry, dark fruits, honey, toasted bread, fruity esters, chocolate and some earthy, mineraly hops. The mouthfeel is medium with light carbonation, and drinkability is quite impressive considering the massive abv. An interesting beer from Troegs, kind of an american/belgian hybrid...tasty and complex and the alcohol is incredibly well hidden.

Photo of sdj5
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Reddish-brown. Clear. Darker than white head.

S: Cherry, mostly.

T: Very much like cherries, bread and alcohol.

M: On the thinner side. Average amount of carbonation.

D: I couldn't drink a ton of this, but it's enjoyable in small quantities.

Photo of MouldyCrow
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jscondon
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours with little head, but the ring along the snifter stays present throughout. the amber color is deep and very red, while the nose has a strong alcohol scent emenating cherries and a slight maltiness. this is a think mouthy beer having an immense flavor, a very subtle cherry flavor that is not over bearing nicely balanced with hops. i really like this beer, and it will store!

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Tröegs Mad Elf from Tröegs Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 3,551 ratings.