Draft Bear | Mikkeller ApS

very good
131 Reviews
Draft BearDraft Bear

Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS

Style: American Double / Imperial Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed at De Proef Brouwerij, Lochristi-Hijfte, Belgium.

Ingredients: Water, malts (pils, carapils and amber), light candy sugar, hops (amarillo and cascade) and lager yeast.

Added by akorsak on 02-15-2008

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Reviews: 131 | Ratings: 240
Photo of dnichols
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured a 750 ml caged and corked and foil wrapped bottle into a pint glass. This is my first venture into an Imperial Pilsner.

A: It poured a bright gold colored body that was remarkably clear. It had a one to two finger white head that retained well and supported a thick and sticky lacing.

S: It had a subtle malty and yeasty base with herbal and spicy hops dominating but not overpowering the aroma profile. It was clean and crisp with a hint of a nice fall day spent in the hay pasture.

T: It had a modest but distinct hop bite from the get go. The flavors were dominate by citrus flavors (orange and lemons), a undercurrent of maltiness added a sweet and creamy flavor. It is a complex and well balanced beer.

M: It was medium bodied with heavy but not overwhelming carbonation. It had a crisp and refreshing front and a clean and warm finish.

D: It was a very well constructed beer. It would be a great summer beer...meant for a hot day. Very refreshing. I'll be getting more of this style.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up out of curiosity from god knows what liquor store.

Pours a peachy orange cloudy color with a very nice white head that retains well and leaves lacing that is quite nice.

The nose has alot of grassy hops and piney resiny sweetness. An odd fruitiness too.

Taste follows almost exactly. Grassy pine hop resins abound, a malt sweetness that can only be described as half baked fruit. A candy sweetness as well. The grass like hops come out on the finish as well. I like the level of bitterness in this one. It stays nice and pilsnery without becoming a DIPA. Dry finish.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, a bit thick maybe, but carbonation is quite good, and palate is very dry.

Drinkability is good, but there is defenitely a noticeable alcohol presence. Aside from that the drinkability is fairly strong.

Overall this is a great example of the imperial pilsner style. Doesn't go too far with hoppiness, but is still very much a hop driven and hop flavorful beer. The interesting malt sweetness is what intrigues me the most about this one. A fine example of the sytle by mikkeller.

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Photo of corby112
4.55/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy golden amber/ orange color with a huge, foamy off-white head that settles into a lasting lace. Aroma is nicely balanced with hints of citrus peel, hops, crisp fruit, pine and malt. Very quaffable and excelently balanced, with a complex flavors. Nice malty backbone balancing out sweet crisp fruit, lemon and orange peel, and a nice citrus/ floral hop presence that lasts throughout. Alcohol warmth in the finish.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Polished pumpkin with bubblebee borders. A yeasty haziness would improve the look of the liquid. The gorgeous crown, on the other hand, needs no help at all. Following the pour, it settles out at four full fingers of cotton-like stickiness that is blasting the glass with lace. Brewed and bottled in Lochristi-Hufte, Belgium. Hmmm...

I love the fact that Mikkeller is in love with American hops and uses them like they're going out of style. The nose is redolent of sunny tangerine, musky peach, pink grapefruit and ganja. Amarillo and Cascade is such a wonderful combination where there's no strongly scented (and flavored) malt to get in the way.

It's obvious that Draft Bear is generously hopped. Unfortunately, unlike the best versions of the style, it isn't insanely hopped. This must be a pretty fresh bottle since the 'best by' date on the synthetic cork is December 2009. Ain't no way the beer will any good at that point. Don't age it... drink it!

This Imperial pilsner doesn't taste radically different from a DIPA. Sure, the lager yeast gives it a certain 'absence of esters' cleanliness, but otherwise the similarities are there. The malt sugars are helped along by candi sugar that, thankfully, doesn't produce a tooth-rotting sweetness.

The taste score isn't higher because the hops aren't quite bold enough. 50% more flavor and 50% more bitterness would have gotten it there with ease. Atop a sugar cookie-like base is a cornucopia of juicy fruit that includes tangerine, peach and white grapefruit. Amarillo seems more prominent than Cascade on the palate. Exceptionally well-buried alcohol is a big plus.

The mouthfeel almost reaches the next rung of the quality/score ladder. It's full and borderline sticky, with something less than a Belgian-like voluminousness. Greatness would have meant either bigger and more viscous... or lighter, creamier and fluffier.

It seems that Mikkeller is incapable of brewing anything but good beer (Stateside IPA, Struisse Mikkeller) and great beer (Beer Geek Breakfast, All Others Pale and Jackie Brown). Draft Bear belongs in the first group and is definitely worth a purchase for anyone even remotely interested in the style. What the hell is Draft Bear anyway?

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Photo of illidurit
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter. Muddy opaque goldenrod color with a medium-tall off-white head that leaves a film of fine lacing.

Fresh-cut pineapple aroma, pungent mango, peach juice. Some herbs and grass too.

Flavor is pale malt with orange marmalade, grains, and a bitter finish. I'm not getting hardly any noble hop spiciness like I expect from a pilsener. Tastes sort of like an aged DIPA.

Mouthfeel is nice and dry, maybe a little low on carbonation, some alcohol warming.

While this isn't a bad beer, the thing I like about pilseners is the noble hops cleanness and crispness, and this beer seemed mired in tropical fruit flavors. Upon checking the ingredients, I see that this beer is hopped with Cascade and Amarillo. Doesn't really make any sense to use zero noble hops and call your beer a pilsener. Stylistically this beer is way off, but hedonistically it's pretty good.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.23/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a dark, rustic orange that was accompanied by a solid 2 finger frothy ivory-tusk colored head that displayed amazing retention and was nearly fully lasting for the course of the drink. A thick spongy and foamy lacing adheres to the sides of the glass vessel in stratified fashion.

S: Dried orange peels with light hay notes first are detected. A very nice wildflower and orange blossom scents add subtle highlights with some underlying sweet candi-sugar and spicy notes. The overall aroma was soft and perfumy and one I wished I would of displayed more of a showing but made a nice impact none the less with its subtle nature.

T: The flavor starts off with tart tangerines, grapefruit and a light mildew nature. Sharp sour citrus and lemon grass soon fades allowing a sublte malt and candi-sugar sweetness to soon take over. Lingering alcohol fusels were noticeable with a slight sour fruitiness of pears and bananas. Light musky hay and herbal notes along with a peppery spiciness rounds out an otherwise very good flavor.

M: light to medium in fullness and was very smooth on the tongue. Soft carbonation wit a dry lingering lemon-alcohol fade finishes things out here.

D: Definitly an intriguing flavor, with some booziness and mildew nature of sour citrus and sweet candi-sugar all combining to make this a must try. There was some noticeable booziness at times that makes this an honest sipper that is a good thing because I wanted this beer to last as long as possible.

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Photo of adamparker05
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a filthy amber, dirty orange color. Nice, soft foam.

Aroma is a malty sweetness with some nice banana bread and papaya fruit.

Taste is full of some tropical fruits, a little bit of peach french toast (Weird i know- but I've had it!) with a sharp, acidic finish.

Very drinkable. Comes in 750ml so you can't drink a whole lot, but if you're taking your time it is a delicious beer to be savored.

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Photo of Derek
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best before 13/12/09.

You don't typically find Amarillo & Cascade hops in a pilsner, so it's a little odd for the style... though I guess it's an american style.

A: Hazy, golden-bronze; huge, fluffy white head, great retention & lacing.

S: Huge peach, tangerine, nectarine, marmalade aroma. Definitely smells more like an IPA than a Pilsner.

T: Tangerine, nectarine, marmalade, grass and hints of biscuity malt. Much more Amarillo flavour than cascade. Assertive bitterness; alcohol is subtle. Yeast profile is extremely neutral.

M: Well-attenuated, moderate body has a dry, crisp finish.

D: Very drinkable for its strength.

Very well-crafted and brewed. But a double pils?

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Photo of russpowell
4.41/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent bronze with 4+ fingers of fluffy cream colored head. Insane lacing & head retention

S: Lemons, grapefruits, grassyness & soapyness as well

T: Grapefruit, a touch of booze warmth, grainyness & a touch of honey malt up front. Grapefruit, lemons & pineapple dominate as this warms, along with dryness, apricot & passion fruit. Finishes dry, fruiity, with hints of appleskins, buried in Grapefruitty hops & nice honey sweetness

MF: Smooth, medium bodied, creamy, great balance

Drinks pretty easy for the ABV, a very good take on the style. A little more hop freshness wouldn't hurt, but this is a keeper!

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Photo of Slatetank
4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up @ State Line and enjoyed it cold in my La Fin Du Monde glass.

A - A very light amber w/ a gentle haze, tons of active rising bubbles, the cork came out with a fwoop! The head is like a milkshake -frothy white and dense. The lace clings well w/ a wavy web pattern.

S - A spicy noble hop scent(saaz) w/ crisp herbal and slightly piney hints w/ a nice mellow malt. The malt flavor has a hint of bready yeast in the nose

M - A very gentle spice which accents a sweet/slightly bitter hoppy quality. The feel has a very nice balance of carbonation w/ smooth hop oils and subtle toasted malt that leads to a semi dry finish. A subtle-barely noticeable warming effect as it nears half empty is noticed w/ more herbal textures

T - A very tasty spiced yet green herbal taste from the hops w/ a malty but lightly sweet overall taste. The flavor is sweet w/ pine hop notes and dry pils malt flavor w/ subtle toasted and sweet essence. The hops are the focus as you would expect and the abv seems to show up in the finish but very sneakily, at the last taste. A refreshing flavor like the original un-doubled style, but quite a nice balancing act of strength and finesse. I love the malt hop combo since it is true to its inspiration - the Pilsner.

D -This is the easiest Imp Pils I have tasted, but still boldw/ a slightly strong quality toward the end, but the noble hops and mild malt w/ subtle warmth of 8% can't be beat for the 750ml was too easy for me to finish especially when scanning the BA forum. This is definitely something I want to taste again -I highly recommend this.

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Photo of jakon
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle corked and caged.

This beer pours amber with a huge off-white head that shows good retention and leaves ample lacing.

The aroma reminds me more of a big pale ale than a pilsener. A good amount of floral and earthy hops with a substantial sweet malt background.

The taste confirms my sense that nothing about this beer resembles a pilsener. It's got a prominent floral hop presence with a big malt backing. Pretty sweet. Hops linger.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy. Not much bite.

Overall, this was a very enjoyable sipper that I'm glad to have tried. Wasn't quite what I expected though.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a deep cloudy copper color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and good lacing. Aroma of European dry hops is totally dominating. Taste is a mix between some huge dry and somewhat floral European hops and a huge malt base. Full body with some great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well done for the style but this is a style that I have a hard tie to dig - I find beer tend to be too dry.

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Photo of gford217
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a hazy orangish amber with huge rocky three-finger white puffy head that lingers for ages and leaves huge clumps of lacing on the way down. Aroma is big on hoppy lemon grass up front, but not overpoweringly hoppy with heavy bready malt smells in the background. Taste is similar to the smell with some citrus hops up front, mainly grapefruit tones. This gives way to the sweets malts and some spices before the grassy notes come back with a crisp, clean, and slightly bitter finish. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and slightly astringent with good carbonation. This is a great example of a strong lager/pilsner.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours golden with a big, rocky, pure white head that sticks around. A bit hazy. Smell is slightly sharp and hot with alcohol, pilsner yeast, some bready notes, and some earthy hops. Taste is similar. It has more of a lager tang from the yeast and isn't as clean as a pilsner. It is also not as exuberantly hopped as the Sam Adams Hallertau Imperial Pilsner. Tastes more like a high quality malt liquor to me- which is what the bottle says. The bready notes are still there, but they are a bit buried by spicy, earthy hops and the lager yeast as well as some caramel and buttery notes. A little prickly going down. Not bad, but not exactly my cup of tea. Nothing really remarkable here, and it is still a bit raw.

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Photo of Crosling
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yellow color with a full, long lasting foam. Well hopped nose, with citrus, spice-like, lemony and fruity hops. Very vibrant. Flavor is very punchy with loads of fruity (orange, tangerine, lemon) and spicy hops. Also, some notes of butter toffee and caramel as well. This is a very nice beer from Mikkeller, one of the better Imperial Pilsners I've had.

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Photo of presario
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brought back from the PNW. Big bottle with silver foil over the cork and cage. Half gold beer with good carbonation and half actively morphing loose head. Bottle says malt liquor but the aroma seems much nicer than that. Aroma is light but seems more like the ghost of an IPA. But the flavour is an initial alcohol rush and then an enjoyable fruity hop and alcohol mix that is actually quite tasty and enjoyable. A bit of a sour citrus residue in the mouth. Kind of a cross between a Tripel and a Malt Liquor.

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Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A good hoppiness that got me through perhaps 400 ml. and then I could take no more. Its fairly one dimensional, a lager and even bit of malt liquor taste in there behind a good hoppiness. Maybe a different day. Found at Premiere Gourmet.Light coloured body.
Had six months later and good head and hoppy aroma.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly fogged orange gold with a creme head that leaves a fair amount of lacing. Flavor is a bit sweet and fairly smooth. Carries a bit of a bite to it that only has a touch of alcohol to it. Massive complexity here? No. Slight hops are here, yes. But not a whole lot really when you look at it. The strongest part of this beer is its smooth qualities. There is a bit of a tart edge to it. Feel is better on carbonation than liquid, but still nice. Overall this is very drinkable. Nothing crazy, but pretty smooth with a barely noticed alcohol.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, orange body with a full, frothy, white head.

Smell: Light pale malt aroma packed with notes of spice, booze, and citrus peel.

Taste: Bready pale maltiness, a hint of grain. Middling sweetness. Bright citrusy fruitiness. A spoonful of marmalade. Floral, spicy hops with a mild bitterness. Slightly boozey. Warming, bittersweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Actually, this isn't half bad, though it is a bit pricey. Still, though, I do recommend wrestling with the Draft Bear.

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Photo of ATLbeerDog
3.45/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light yellow color with average head with average lacing and average carbonation. The dominate smell is heavy hops and mild malts. First taste is light, sweet, and very hoppy for the style. Light in body and taste. The dominate flavor is hops. Not bad. Closer to an IPA than a lager.

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Bright orange with a rocky eggshell white head that leaves sticky lacing.

S - Sweet bready malt with floral, spicy and grapefruit hops.

T - Bready sweet malt, biscuit and a touch of honey with big, juicy citrus hops that give way to a bigger piney punch.

M - Medium body and slightly sticky sweet that turns creamy with a dry finish.

D - Big, sweet and hoppy makes for a nice big tasty pilsner.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a mild amber hue with some sunsin highlights. Very thick and sticky head that can't help but cling to the side of the glass. Not to mention the good bubbling carbonation that can't help to be seen. The aroma is a hoppy, pilsnery, IPA malt and hop bill. Citric hops, and lager yeasty garss herbs. The first sip is only reminiscent of what a pilsner might be. Dry pilsner malts with an orange zest backbone. The finish is an herbal and peppery hop with a dry lagery, pilsner malt. The palate i pretty bitter, a little sweet, an just a touch rocky. A great double pilsner.

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Photo of oberon
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Pilsnert Urquell glass a hazed honey golden with a large fluffy white head that stuck like glue to the glass as it settled very slowly.Big grassy and herbal hits the nostrils on impact of the pour then a honey sweetness as a well as some mineral shows thru just nicely balanced with a real pronounced hop profile.Wow the flavors of this double pils to me are up there with the Sam Adams Hallertau pils, big herbal-spicey hop along with some citric hop intermingling with caramel and honey malt is just great.A great beer and it will keep hopheads like me happy but stay somewhat true to styel,a great beer.

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Photo of Trueant1
4.59/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

....style notes from BA website....

Similar to a Pilsner in appearance, but expect a more pronounced malty backbone and an intense bitterness. Malt flavors tend to be quite sweet in many examples. Alcohol can be quite aggressive and lend some spicy notes to the flavor.

This beer pours hazy orange and has a HUGE white foamy head that leves a thick lacing.

Smells kind of "rank" up front. Not much going on for me in the smell catagory.

The taste is spicy, lemons, and grassy hops. SOme bittering lingers on the aftertaste....this beer drinks like a nice saison..farm house ale. This is smooth and well balanced. I love this beer.

The moutfeel is carbonated a little to much, dry and smooth.

this beer drinks way too easy for a 8%

Loved this beer!

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Photo of GbVDave
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into two pint glasses. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

Best before 13/12/09

A: Pours a beautiful looking hazy golden color with an extremely meringue-like off-white head that leaves chunky gobs of lace all over the glass.

S: Lightly sweet caramel with an awesome fresh cut grass and tangerine/grapefruit aroma. Also noticed some pear and peach.

T: Caramel malt,toasted biscuits, and a kiss of honey sweetness, with a huge dose of bitter, spicy, and juicy/sweet hops (changing from citrus to pine as the temp changes). Tastes like a freshly mown lawn!

M: Right off the bat, this feels sweet and unusually creamy then the peppery hops march through and turn things decidedly drier. Very juicy and sticky.

D: The guys from Mikkeller strike again. This is an excellent beer!

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Draft Bear from Mikkeller ApS
3.99 out of 5 based on 240 ratings.
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