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Sunturnbrew - Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

Not Rated.
SunturnbrewSunturnbrew

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

214 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 214
Reviews: 125
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 16.23%
Wants: 11
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S visit their website
Norway

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-12-2009

Brewed at the solstice each year since 2008.

This smoked barely wine is brewed with 30% smoked malt and 20% rye.

26° Plato, 50 IBU,
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 214 | Reviews: 125 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of biegaman
4.57/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sunturnbrew's remarkably dark tone plays into the fact that it's brewed on December 21st - the darkest, longest night in the northern hemisphere. While not exactly black, it is too dim to really make out any colour or highlighting; total darkness without total blackness. Not making any sense? Well, the beer does claims it'll inspire "a change in perception".

And "change" is right! I've never smelled a beer quite like this - a tea, yes (the smoky pine tar aroma is nearly identical to that of a lapsang souchong, where the leaves are smoke-dried over pinewood fires); in food, yes (it's eerily reminiscent of smoked ham); in scotches, hell yes (is this not aged in used Islay casks?) - but in a beer, no, nothing quite like this.

Sunturnbrew is different because it's made with 30% smoked malt *and* 20% rye. The spiciness of the latter distinguishes this from other smoked beers. But the beer is truly spectacular, however, by virtue of the fact that it was brewed as a Barleywine - that most rich, intricate and sticky-sweet of styles with tastes of caramel, nougat, figs, dates, plums, and dried apricot. Combined with the smoky pine notes these flavours become almost sedative.

Nøgne says this is best enjoyed in front of the fireplace, but take my word, Sunturnbrew offers enough warmth and relaxation (not to mention, smoke) to simulate the fireplace. The taste of candied fruits is a compliment to the rich texture of sweet, caramelized malt. There's enough juniper wood and botanical flavour to smack of gin, but also such a mellow and nuanced fortified wine-like profile you'd swear it was aged in port barrels.

Perhaps most of all, however, Sunturnbrew is a beer for lovers of peaty, smoky scotches. It may be brewed in Norway, but this beer has the iodine- and sea brine-soaked notes notorious of Islay single malts. This obviously makes it a 'love-it-or-hate-it' beer but, as someone who loves Lagavulin and Laphroaig just as much as J.W Lees and Old Guardian, I consider it brilliant.

There may be no beer better suited to the longest, darkest night of the year than Sunturnbrew. It is a soothing, satiating, distinctively 'wintry' beer that fans of barleywines, smoked beers, smoked meats, cigars, Islay single malts, lapsang souchong tea, fortified wines, artisan gins, or just unique taste experiences in general really aught to seek out.

Photo of Vyronian
2.75/5  rDev -28%

Photo of Cadbury
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

Photo of jaydoc
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%

Photo of bareju
3.91/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured out of 25 oz bottle into oversized wine glass

A: A little darker than coca-cola, very little head.

S: Lots of smoke and caramel malts, a bit of dark fruits and banana along with a nice alcoholic warmth in the finish.

T: Took my palette a bit to adjust to the intense smokiness of the beer and get past the rich caramel malts, but the taste is sweet, smokey, and leaves a nice bitterness in your mouth. Reminds me of the beer version of a scotch whiskey and coke. Every sip leaves a different taste dominant in your mouth.

M: Very nice, creamy and coats the mouth. Carries the bitterness and helps fight the sweet malts and smokiness of the initial sip.

O: Good, a bit smokey for my taste, but hides the alcohol well while still warming you up a good bit. This is a very big beer with a nice complex taste profile, although smoke and caramel malts dominate. First barley wine I've tried, I'll have to seek out others to compare.

Photo of andrenaline
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Photo of RedAleMan
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of nebuchadnezzer
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%

Photo of jrenihan
3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled June 20, 2013.

The beer is very dark brown with a large beige head. Very good retention, lots of lace.

Nose is quite smoky, with a real peat character. Malty and woody. Hard to get much else past the smoke.

Taste is more varied. A strong flavour of sweet caramel malt, blended with the smoke. Quite sweet, almost has a honey flavour. Rich dark fruits. Hops are pretty mild. Good.

Full bodied, moderate carbonation level. Smooth.

Overall, quite good. A nice surprise after the nose, which didn't make me optimistic. A bit on the sweet side, but enjoyable.

Photo of evil_liver
3/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of vermilcj
3/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of peensteen
2.39/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 1.75

Brownish red colour, two fingers khaki head, some lace. Smell is all smoke and salt/peat, spice and some faint caramel, there is a bit of hop underneath all the smoke/peat as well. Taste is just all salt water and smoke, sweet at first followed by bitterness, but this is just wave after wave of iodine and smoke. Medium body, medium slightly prickly carbonation. This was pretty terrible all around, and the vast majority of the bottle saw the drain, never again.

Photo of superdoopersauce
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%

Photo of BKBassist
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of frankthetank86
2/5  rDev -47.6%

Photo of buzzy
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Photo of sbanacho
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of fionn13
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

Photo of schopenhauerale
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Photo of WOLFGANG
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of Mendicant
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of joemcgrath27
2.97/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - pitch black with just a bit of hazy light getting through near the stem of the tulip glass, thumb of tan head held nicely with fairly consistent lacing
S - its a smoke bomb, maybe a touch of leather, can't say much more than that except that was not what I was expecting at all
T - so much big smoke to the point that its tough to drink, it is so overwhelming that there is nothing barelywine about it, have a feeling this is in the wrong style
M - once you get past the smoke it actually drinks relatively well for 11%
O - not sure what to say about this, I want to like it but its like i'm sitting around a fire and the wind has shifted in my direction, and that's not a comfortable feeling, strange....

Photo of quirkzoo
3.54/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Purchased in 2011 I believe so probably about 2 years old at time of consumption.

Appearance is very dark for a barleywine but still brown. Despite it's dark color it has a very nice clarity.

Smell is pleasant if unremarkable. Lots of sweet caramel notes up front with a touch of alcohol. A little bit of dark fruit. Although the bottle says "smoked barleywine" and that is why I bought it, I am not detecting any smoke, perhaps because of the age?

Taste is similar to the aroma. Overall it is very nice. It leans towards the sweeter side with a fair but not overwhelming amount of complexity and balance.

The mouthfeel is very full and is not hot for 11%. Slightly viscous. Not too thick that I had any trouble finishing the 500ml bottle.

Overall this is a solid beer, especially if you like a touch of sweetness in your barleywine. I probably won't seek it out again but I enjoyed this bottle.

Photo of MNPikey
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Sunturnbrew from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
86 out of 100 based on 214 ratings.