Santa's Little Helper 2011 | Mikkeller ApS

BA SCORE
87
very good
96 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score
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Santa's Little Helper 2011Santa's Little Helper 2011
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS
Denmark
mikkeller.dk

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.90%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
A 9.1 % variant was sold in Sweden.

Added by brotherloco on 11-13-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
96
Reviews:
36
Avg:
3.91
pDev:
13.55%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
12
For Trade:
1
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 96 |  Reviews: 36
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shared by jayhawk73. Thanks Jeff.

The beer is near black with a thick beige head. Lasting retention and decent lacing. The aroma brings classic Danish roast scents, rich roasted malt, dark chocolate, yeast. Smells similar to a Danish stout. The flavor is rich and smooth. Drinks more like a European stout than a BSDA. Relatively light in body for the style, but by no means thin. Alcohol hidden very well. A solid beer. I would definitely have this again.

 457 characters

Photo of ajs4bd
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of Stinger80OH
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of FrankShirley
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of Rickythejeweler
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Photo of bluesplit63
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of joesc230
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of brez8791
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of KevdoggNasty
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of UltimateLivewire
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of briandot
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of harrisjohnson
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of AlastairM
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Photo of Mkfos13
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a dark, dark brown color with a two-finger head of light brown foam. It left thin rings of lace and a good deal of sediment in the glass.

S - It smelled of plum, raisin and some spices.

T - It tasted malty and sweet with a touch of booziness. Good dried fruit flavors with notes of raisin and plum.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium to full bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is a really good beer. Nice to find it on sale after the holiday season.

 482 characters

Photo of Arborescence
4.53/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black. Pours a very thick head that develops quickly, pour gently!

Aroma: Dark chocolate, alcohol, burnt coffee, malt.

Taste: Strong malt attack with coffee and chocolate flavours, develops into an aftertaste typical for barley wines; warms you up on the way down. Not your typical Christmas Ale flavours, although they do claim to have added some spices to it. Plenty of sweetness too from the added sugar and syrup.

Mouthfeel: Very thick and soupy, yet smooth.

Overall: Interesting! Mikkeller, which is a very productive and experimental brewery, has gone to Belgium to brew this year’s Santa’s Little Helper (not that I’ve tried the previous ones) and they have produced a fine Belgian Strong Ale. This one has elements similar to Rochefort 8 or 10, which are among my favourite Strong Belgian Trappists — Mikkeller’s version is much sweeter though. The sweetness is a bit much after a few sips, but I guess it’s ok given that it’s a Christmas Ale. The high ABV helps to balance the sweetness a bit, and makes this a beer to be enjoyed slowly. Certainly worth looking for.

 1,108 characters

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

Got on tap at the roast house in frederick md 12oz pour into a snifter

A- dark dark brown almost black, minimal to no head as soon as its there its gone, small bubbles around the edges of the glass, and when swirled it leaves a brown film on the glass, good looking beer

S- Malty, slight rasin smell, sweet tobacco, leather, also getting hints of cinnamon and a touch of nutmeg, it really smells awesome

T- Sweet malty flavor, dark fruit, slight dark chocolate, yeasty pretty complex changes alot as it goes over the tongue, outstanding beer

M- medium to thick mouthfeel, coats the mouth very silky, slight carbonation

O- great beer, looks good, smells good, taste great i will deff be oging back for more of this

 719 characters

Photo of Heavenisbeer
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of JoeBloe
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of Vonerichs
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Oswego Taphouse.

Poured into a snifter and was extremely dark. I couldn't tell f it was brown or black because of the lighting. Huge chocolate mousse colored head with loads of cascading lace.

Not only does it look like a stout, it smells like a stout. Chocolate and roasted malt. It's not very deep in aromas.

...and tastes like a stout. Chocolate, roast, a little raisin, earthy hops, and yeast.

Smooth mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Slightly warming.

It's a decent beer, although it screams stout to me, not Belgian Dark Ale.

 553 characters

Photo of Heatwave33
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle to a DFH Snifter.

Color: Black with a light brown head.

Smell: Roasted and caramel malts, chocolate, bread

Taste: Same as the aroma except with some nice cinnamon and nutmeg spices.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation, slightly coarse with a mid dryness on the palate.

Overall: This brew has a great balance. Drinkability is pretty decent considering the ABV. I didn't detect any hops in it. Still good. Cheers.

 436 characters

Photo of darcange
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of schlimenhaumer
3.31/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a nonic pint glass at altitude in Denver. Thanks once again to kojevergas for this one, my third vintage of Mikkeller’s Santa’s Little Helper.

A: Pours a dark amber color with a huge tan head of nice retention. Great lacing.

S: Caramel malts are the strongest presence here, with some chocolate and Christmas spices.

T: Chocolate up front with some yeasty spice character to follow. Caramel malts support these flavors and give it nice balance, but it’s not particularly complex, especially compared to the 2009 and 2010 vintages of this brew.

M: Full-bodied with a smooth, wet mouthfeel. Appropriate for the style, but not particularly interesting.

D: Good and quite drinkable; the ABV is concealed quite well. However, this pales in comparison to the 2009 and 2010 vintages. I would have a hard time buying this again given the price point, and I think I’ll wait on the verdict on the 2012 vintage before buying (although at this point it might be hard to let go of this tradition…).

 1,012 characters

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Draft pour into a 13oz chalice for $7.75. The menu indicated 10.5%. Sampled on 12/9/11.

A: Served with a minimal head that fades quickly leaving behind a small, crescent ring shaped collar. Very little activity on the surface. The body is black with dark amber brown edges when backlit. Lacing is just above non-existent.

S: Deep fudge, chocolate, light shoe leather and (seemingly) some type of wood treatment. I may be way off here since no other reviewer mentions bourbon or barrel, but I certainly picked up on something that made it worth mentioning. Maybe the combination of big booze and a highly phenolic yeast strain tricked me. All of the aromas are big and I find a great balance between them.

T: Taste is a hybrid of BSDA and stout, and firmly leaning toward the latter with the presence of roasted malt. Some raisiny dark fruits lay low in the flavor profile adding to the complexity. Excellent flavor, and one of my favorite beers by Mikkell.

M: Medium full and semi thick. This beer is probably over carbonated, but at least this helps to keep the finish nice and clean.

O: The aroma and flavor *definitely* came as a surprise. But a very GOOD surprise. I'd gladly order again and would be very interested in trying this beer from the bottle. My experience seems quite a bit different than the majority of the reviews...

 1,340 characters

Santa's Little Helper 2011 from Mikkeller ApS
3.91 out of 5 based on 96 ratings.
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