Arctic Circle Ale
Malmgårdin Panimo

Arctic Circle AleArctic Circle Ale
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Style:
Farmhouse Ale - Sahti
Ranked #2
ABV:
7.3%
Score:
88
Ranked #12,211
Avg:
3.95 | pDev: 9.87%
Reviews:
78
Ratings:
145
From:
Malmgårdin Panimo
 
Finland
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  38
Gots
  8
SCORE
88
Very Good
Arctic Circle AleArctic Circle Ale
Notes:
Reviews: 78 | Ratings: 145 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by falloutsnow:
Photo of falloutsnow
falloutsnow from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From: Wally's Wines, Los Angeles, CA
Date: None
Glass: Tulip

This was a sampling of my first sahti, had little in the way of expectation as I've never had the style before. Very rich and malty, quite caramel-laden, very little hop presence and the juniper (at least in this bottle) is subdued and in the background. Overall, I suppose I would have appreciated the juniper being a bit more noticeable in both taste and smell, as this would have differentiated the beer and the style from a bock or imperial brown ale. This is highly drinkable, but perhaps not something I'd spend $7 for a bottle of again, given that no dating is present and little reference to work with.

Pours a 1.5cm head of light tan foam, composed of small to medium bubbles, with average retention. Fades to a thick ring around the glass with modest lacing (a few large spots here and there). Body is a dark brown with reddish hues, opaque, with light bringing out lighter orange-red tints amidst the general brown backdrop.

Aroma of caramel, syrupy malts, richly roasted nuts. Seems to be missing the juniper, or it has dissipated with age (of course, I'm not sure how old this bottle actualy is). Rather doppelbock-like, when considering the caramel, malt intensity, and vague nuttiness of it all. This smells just fine, but I'm not sure if it's indicative of a quality, fresh sahti or not.

Overall, flavors are rich, malty, with slight hints of juniper and woodsy resin. Tasting opens with caramel sweetness that features slight chocolate as well. Mid-palate experiences rich caramel malts with modest juniper-like pine flavors. Back of palate continues the hearty caramel malts, but also some tanginess and bitterness, possibly from the juniper or ethanol, which can also be lightly detected. Aftertaste of caramel malts mixed with light juniper berry/twig flavors and subtle bitterness.

Beer's body is medium-heavy to heavy bodied, with medium-low carbonation, the result being a mouthfeel that is exceptionally smooth and full. Does not close dry, but there is a bit of stickiness across the palate and lips.

Nov 26, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of mick303
mick303 from Canada (ON)

4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured slightly chilled into a tulip glass. A dark coppery brown colour, quite hazy with minimal film but some decent lacing.

S - aroma is very interesting, caramel malts, estery spice, juniper, also a rustic yeasty aspect which compliments the malt. Some floral and heather aspects, really interesting, mulled apple cider.

T - a malty start with a bit of caramel sweetness, a character a bit reminiscent of apple cider with a nice spicy rye body and then a full junipery flavour, caramel malt and honey, earthy bitterness, maintains a bit of spice to the finish. Well accentuated and flavourful.

M - nice moderately big body with a nice resiny spice to it, quite a pleasant juniper character, a light carbonation to it. Very drinkable.

Pleasant and complex. This is my first Sahti and this is a delightful and well made beer. Interesting combination of caramel malt with a touch of juniper resin and flavour, kept in really nice balance, with some rustic yeast characters and fruitiness, apples and mulled peach, a pleasant herbal finish with a bit of a medicinal quality but artfully balanced with the lingering malt. Well-recommended.

Nov 21, 2014
Photo of 4ster
4ster from Canada (ON)

4.04/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mar 05, 2015
Photo of Ciocanelu
Ciocanelu from Romania

3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Hazy, dark amber color with tan head. Aroma has sweet caramel malt, brown sugar but also an astringent note. Taste startssweet with brown sugar and dried fruit notes, gets more bitter in the middle taste with some earthy/woody flavor and finishes even more bitter with a lingering charred wood note. Medium body with medium to low carbonation. Overall it's an interesting style of beer but not something to really seek out.

Jun 29, 2016
Photo of nquigley16
nquigley16 from Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Jan 02, 2013
Photo of RochefortChris
RochefortChris from North Carolina

4.75/5  rDev +20.3%

Mar 31, 2013
Photo of jibjib513
jibjib513 from Ohio

3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Aug 20, 2013
Photo of Vinylboy20
Vinylboy20 from New York

3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Mar 11, 2016
Photo of polloenfuego
polloenfuego from Canada (ON)

3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This beer looks good and smells great. Where is let me down was on the taste. While it is a decent beer, it does not taste like any traditional Sahti I have had, and I think that is what I was expecting. My wife is Finnish and every summer I wind up drinking Sahti homebrew. Arctic Circle seems harsh by comparison. Just my two cents worth, it might be a regional thing or local ingredients, but I have not had a Sahti that tastes this bitter.

Dec 12, 2014
Photo of Cramshawbar
Cramshawbar from Canada (ON)

2.75/5  rDev -30.4%

Nov 13, 2014
Photo of yancot
yancot from Canada (ON)

4/5  rDev +1.3%

Oct 29, 2014
Photo of simont1
simont1 from Sweden

3.92/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very different bitterness on this one, very different ale in general, I guess it’s a Sahti. Rye is nice, very nice mouthfeel, a bit fruity feel to it, quite a bit bitterness, but nicely balanced, and the malt gives very interesting new flavors that I don’t really resemble with "beer" or classic malt, but soy, maybe butterscotch, and some leather feel to it, taste is really full...

Jun 02, 2014
Photo of WillAndSarah
WillAndSarah from Canada (ON)

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Oct 26, 2014
Photo of nullbort
nullbort from Canada (ON)

4/5  rDev +1.3%

Nov 18, 2014
Photo of evil_liver
evil_liver from Canada (ON)

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Nov 29, 2014
Photo of Bf_89
Bf_89 from Canada (ON)

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Nov 14, 2014
Photo of mrbigpappa
mrbigpappa from Finland

4.8/5  rDev +21.5%

Sep 18, 2014
Photo of taxandbeerguy
taxandbeerguy from Canada (ON)

3.96/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

600 ml bottle served cold into a pint glass. Really excited to see a Sahti in the LCBO. Purchased for $5.60 CDN.

Appearance - hazy honey brown color, with an off tan head. A finger and a half of head with nice amounts of sticky lacing left behind eventually due to the great retention. A few visible bubbles, but hard to tell due to the cloudiness.

Smell - very herbal, with some low hanging berries, and a subtle inviting sweet aroma. Some flowery aspects as well. Something akin to molasses in there as well.

Taste - wow quite a it going on here. Starts off with and earthy fruitiness, the juniper shows up here, with some mild bitterness, before the bitterness turns more serious. Transitions into a bit of a smoky flavor, and there's little bits of molasses and toffee interspersed throughout. Quite tasty.

Mouthfeel - smoothly, lightly carbonated, body is a little heavier than average.

Overall - definitely a different experience than my first with a Sahti, but this is delicious, easy drinking and potent enough to warm you up a bit on a cold winters day.

Nov 29, 2014
Photo of kevinlater
kevinlater from Canada (ON)

4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle into nonic pint. "finnish ale brewed with juniper twigs" (to be honest i've never tasted juniper before). best before aug 6, 2016, which is printed at the very top of the bottle's neck. poured on november 16, 2014

a: an opaque, deep caramel colour. a very aggressive pour yields 2.5 fingers of head

s: full of caramel and earthy scents. some fruity aromas like slight grapefruit, figs, and raisins, and a pinch of alcohol

t: starts off with a huge and distinct spicy/herbal-y/earthy quality, which i'm guessing is the juniper flavour, along with strong malty caramel. mid-palate exhibits mild raisin/fig notes, along with a potent punch of a kind of smoky taste, which is quite interesting. the finish (heh) has lingering herbal bitterness, with touches of caramel and smoke

m: medium-ish body and medium-minus carbonation. feels quite thick in the mouth, really nice

o: an intriguing, flavourful beer. give it a shot

Nov 16, 2014
Photo of Tsar_Riga
Tsar_Riga from Indiana

3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Translucent brown body, very little head, definite lacing.

S - Molasses, bready malts, and a very pungent alcohol note.

T - Following nose, with a big dark bread, a strong molasses line, and a tail of slight bitterness and alcohol.

M - Moderate body, warming on the close.

O - Not, perhaps, my thing, but very well structured, and flavorful.

Aug 20, 2015
Photo of byronic
byronic from Canada (ON)

3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Aug 11, 2015
Photo of JTuomi
JTuomi from Finland

4/5  rDev +1.3%

Dec 26, 2013
Photo of Hoppy_McGee
Hoppy_McGee from Canada (ON)

4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nov 22, 2014
Photo of little_star
little_star from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Aug 18, 2014
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MarkDeming from Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Jul 05, 2014
Arctic Circle Ale from Malmgårdin Panimo
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 145 ratings