Ølfabrikken Kloster Jul | Ølfabrikken

very good
41 Ratings
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Ølfabrikken Kloster JulØlfabrikken Kloster Jul

Brewed by:

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by John_M on 11-12-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 41 |  Reviews: 35
Photo of Oxymoron
3.88/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Did you just say Yule with a J? Pours a darker chestnut brown color with some lighter brownish hues throughout. Mostly clear with a thick and bubbly off white head. Ok retention and limited lacing throughout.

The nose is a bit sweet with noticeable yeast notes. To start there is a light malt note with some hints of melanodian, but this is quickly over ridden by a brown sugary aroma that blends odd with they yeast. They yeast comes out with a slight Belgian character with a hint of funk. Noticeable fusel notes with a light fruity tart cherry aroma.

The taste is better than the nose. The malt is a bit more distinct with a light kettle caramel flavor. Still a sweetness and a sugar taste/feel in to the end, which is a bit much. A bit of fruity notes with a nice ester backing. Some cherry, figs and dates. A hint of vanilla that comes out as it warms. A bit of astringency from a spicy characteristic, pepper mostly but some licorice and a light herbal thing. Noticeable alcohol burn but not over whelming.

The body is moderate but leaves a dry finish. Carbonation is a bit high with some carbonic bite. Overall there are some nice characteristics but would like the sugar to back off and a bit more yeast notes to shine.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a fairly clear dark and amber brown. Thick crème head. Nose is sugary and sweet. Minor yeasty alcohol edge. Flavor is thick with malts and smoothly sweet. Almost seems to be a touch of vanilla. Cherries are there, sure. Mild though. Wood tones seem a bit more prominent. Overall though there are touches of fruit and a really mature and beautifully mature sweet tone. Feel is smooth on liquid and the carbonation is very appropriate. This is a very nice beer. Very nice. Try it if you have the chance.

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Photo of nick76
3.28/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The aroma is sweet but not super sweet. Its got fruit, licorice, yeast, and grassy hops. The appearance is hazy brown with a large foamy head. The flavor is like the aroma. The palate is smooth but thin. Overall its OK but I am a little disappointed.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5


Poured into a Goblet glass a deep amber/brown color, very nice carbonation, awesome huge three-finger creamy head, that settled down to a one-finger thick/creamy sticky lacing. The nose is malty, slight yeast, nice dark fruit notes, with some spicyness. The taste is very nice, malty, with a slight yeast note, sweet, nice fig/raisin/plum notes, slight spicy. Full body, with a slight dry finish. ABV hidden very well. Very drinkable, this is one freakn' awesome brew, highly recommend.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a lovely tan, two finger head that very slowly recedes to a thick, doughy film. Sticky lacing too. Murky tobacco and cherry wood brown hue so dark, its almost impossible to see any bubbles. Awesome looking beer makes it hard to not take a sip, or finish a bottle of his beer.

Leathery toasted cherries. Then some sugared bananas with just a touch licorice. The yeast an malt even gives a little hint of bubblegum that mixes well with some herbal hops.

Pillowy soft fruits, thanks to the lovely carbonation,starts the taste and palate off first. The fruit develops into just a softly tart cherry. Then some bready fruit cake with just a little banana liquer. A little plummy too. The hops add even more herbal flavors to tghis beer.

Make sure you let this beer warm up a little. When its colder, it has a metallic taste to it.

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Photo of IBUnit63
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 corked and caged into Duvel tulip...

Full, 3-finger buttery-colored (slightly burned butter, like when you make popcorn on the stove) head with a good chunky seam and heavy, bready weight. Body is still with a deep mahogany/cherrywood color. Quite impressive - staying power, lacing and all.

Oooh...smells like a spicy Quad - creamy dark malt with nice, subtle yeast electricity, hop pine, brown sugar and slight clove. A little coriander and molasses in there too.

Whoooa, camel...after a thankfully brief tinny front with a cold bicarb feel, this burns off to reveal a huge Quad/BSDA with insane, bountiful malt, mild, creamy spice of clove, cinnamon, ginger and a whole lot of brown sugar and molasses. Sweet, syrupy and huge - perhaps dark dried fruits on deep background too - a little raisin maybe? Hop pine shows up in a cameo. This is big.

One word...velvety. The spice is tempered by the molasses and brown sugar nicely. Huge malt and electric yeast work in Beautiful Chemistry. This pacgage is put together.

Definitely one to sip but this is brutally well done. Excellent.

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Photo of GbVDave
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into two red wine glasses. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours a muddy, dark, caramel-y brown color. Capping this is a creamy, light-khaki colored head that slowly recedes into a swirly skim and thick ring. Droopy ropes of lace left behind.

S: Subtle aromas of caramel, spices, cherry, chocolate, and very subtle aromas of anise and yeast.

T: Flavors of toasted malt, caramel, chocolate, spicy yeast, candi sugar, slightly tart cherry, toasted nuts, and raisin. Heather says that the cherry flavor seems more like dark fruit; raisins and plums, and that the cherry is more apparent in the nose than the taste.

M: Big and sweet with a great spicy dryness that does a nice balancing job. Slightly tart in the middle with a nice and dry hop finish.

D: Alcohol is so well hidden yet by the end of the bottle, our cheeks were a little warm. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of JoeCeez
4.23/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a deep dark brown with ruby edges and a thick three fingerd foamy mocha tinged head that leaves lots of lacing

S: smells of very rich sweet caramel, dark fruits, dried cherries, figs, spicy yeast

T: very complex... upfront flavors are of tart cherries and sweet black licorice. Supported by dark candy sugar some bitter chocolate, roasted, and caramel malt, some clove and bubblegum yeast and some solvent alcohol, pretty dry finish

M: medium-light bodied with lots of prickly carbonation, as it warms and opens up it becomes incrdibly smooth and creamy

D: the flavors are very complex and each sip entices the palate and begs for another taste of this delicious winter warmer

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with big ruby highlights, very red and glows when held to the light. A nice off white/light tan head grows quickly and retains quite well, turning from fizzy to a nice ice cream lump leaving good lace.

Nose is kind of weak. There is some dark fruit, a fair amount of spices and some honey like sweetness. Almost a sharp borderline citrus smell.

Taste is much more complex than the smell iindicates. Starts off on a fizzy slim kick, but quickly gets much richer. Alot of different dark fruit character going on in here. Some sweet yet astringent fruitiness, plums, dates. The caramel character is also pretty strong. There is quite a bit of spice going on in here as well. very nice. A certain licorice candy action in here as well. I dont know if they put any anise in this, but it could use a little lick of it. The finish is alot more dry than one would guess for the style, or for the pre finish taste. A good dry fruit flavor lingers on the aftertaste along with sugar and some grassy, fruit rhindish flavors.

Mouthfeel is a bit odd. Starts off fizzy and a touch thin, but as the richness flexes its muscle during the middle of the flavor, it is almost like it thickens up. Carbonation could be toned down just a bit. The dryness at the end is odd, but I kind of like it.

Drinkability is pretty good. The abv is hidden extremely well, but the complexity and richness in this one calls for a slow sipping session.

Overall a very interesting beer. Im glad I picked up a couple of these to put some age on. The complexity is very impressive. There are bretter BSDAs out there to be sure, but this one is very unique and very enjoyable as well. Defenitely an experience. Enjoy this one slowly. Good beer.

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Photo of tmoneyba
4.32/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Champane Wine, Warren, MI.

Pours a dark hazy brown color with an average to large frothy brown head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate to heavy roasted nut malt and alcohol aroma. Medium to full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation. Medium to heavy bittersweet flavor with a medium to heavy bittersweet finish of moderate to long duration.

This is a standout beer.

 400 characters

Photo of baggio
4.14/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

[email protected]

This was the final beer i reviewed during a tasting of christmasbeers before i decided that i was too drunk to review any more beers so notes are a little off.

A: Murky brownish with a beige head that vanishes quickly.

S: Caramel, Fruit, Malts, Belgian Yeast.

T: Dark Caramel, Spices, Belgian Yeast, Ripe Fruit.

M: A very sweet beer with little or no bitterness. Very belgian in style.

We tried a 2007 vintage of this and it was great. Up there with the very best belgians and then just a wee touch of christmas with the extra spices added. Recommended!

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Photo of aerozeppl
4.71/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured with a massive explosion of 4 fingers of foam. Nice deep brown color with some ruby highlights.

S: Nice big Belgian yeast smell right up front. Gets more complex as it warms. Some spices with a big blast of malt with it. Some hints of funk especially at the end of the glass.

T: Wonderfully complex. Spices then into a nice wallop of dark fruit. Finishes with a root like taste. Bottle says it is licorice root. Ok that makes sense. The sour cherry taste goes throughout and gets more pronounced as it wamrs.

M: If I had to pick on something it would be that it is a tad over carbonated. Very creamy though.

D: Wow. Totally surprised by this one. One of the best holiday beers I have ever had. Totally different and totally complex. A real gem.

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Photo of BretSikkink
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber brown moving towards mahogany as the yeast settles. The head is lightly tanned, quite tall, and quite sticky. It really is a beautiful looking beer, and doesn't lose any grace as it warms.

Fruity, spicy nose that features the cherry juice along with a nod towards anise that grows stronger with warmth. Dark fruit is also a major player so far, with fig and date dusted with brown sugar as the prime movers.

Flavors are similar, with the cherries on spotlight as the licorice plays backup. Pretty spicy, but also warming and full of flavor. Well balanced. The malted barley shows evidence of chocolate (roast) character as well as caramel (sweet) notes. The hops are last on the ingredient list, and show up only as a mildly herbal inclusion.

The mouthfeel definitely shows the effects of the wheat malt, as the last sip is as light and sippable as the first. There is a drying component that leaves the drinkability in tact even as the flavors grow more pronounced with the warming temperature.

I am very impressed with this "Ale brewed with spices". Olfabrikken has hit another nail on the head; this brew could be mistaken for a fine Belgian ale - if not a Trappist - and the kicker is that it grows more drinkable as it approaches room temperature. To me, that is the litmus test for pretenders to the throne, and Kloster Jul (this is how it is spelled on my bottle) is a superb effort.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.23/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber to brown-ish color, with a big off white to light tan head. In the aroma, licorice, anise, and a small hint of cherry. In the taste, licorice, anise, and a small tart cherry in the end. A smooth and medium to big bodied mouthfeel, and a semi dry licorice aftertaste. Big flavor, dry spices, and hints of tart cherries, quite nice.

 349 characters

Photo of beeraroundtown
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The nose presents warm dark cherry, licorice, caramel, and fig. The flavor was a bit heavy on the spice. Reminds me of Chimay blue when it first hits the palate, sweet caramel and soft chocolate with a vigorous carbonation. Finishes by drying out into a potent licorice spiced flavor amongst the boozy warmth. This is a good by-the-fire winter brew, warming with lots of spice, as it warms a rum raisin cake note finishes it off, lingering fig flavors with a subtle alcohol heat. I grew to like this more as kept at it.

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Photo of John_M
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Debut release at Max's today. I gather they're having an Olfabrikken release party today.

The beer pours a dark brown color with red hilights. Head retention and lacing is sensational. The retention lasts and lasts, and there is sticky lacing all around. This beer looks very impressive.

On the nose, this is all I could want or hope for in a holiday beer. There is a boatload of milk chocolate and maraschino cherry, with a hint of licorise underneath. On the palate... damn this beer is delicious. The flavors replicate the nose, and the beer has a long, smooth, creamy finish. There is also a slight woodsy flavor to this beer, which adds to its complexity. This beer is not heavy at all, and you could really get into a lot of trouble drinking this. Maybe it would wear me out after a glass or two, but after the first couple of sips, all I could think was.... hmmmm... I wonder if I should have another one of these. Sigh. Probably not; the beer is pretty rich, but in any event, this beer is absolutely delicious. Yumm....

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Ølfabrikken Kloster Jul from Ølfabrikken
4.17 out of 5 based on 41 ratings.
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