Arctic Circle Ale | Malmgårdin Panimo

BA SCORE
87
very good
143 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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Arctic Circle AleArctic Circle Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Malmgårdin Panimo
Finland
malmgard.fi

Style: Sahti

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by feloniousmonk on 03-03-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
143
Reviews:
78
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
9.92%
 
 
Wants:
34
Gots:
8
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 143 |  Reviews: 78
Photo of Hoppy_McGee
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of smcolw
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nearly no head, but it does leave some streaky, but limited, lace. The beer is a solid brown color where light passes through easily. Very cloudy, looks muddy.

Plentiful sweet caramel. Smells like a rich duppelbock or a barley wine. No notable juniper berry aroma.

Drier than the smell lets on, but still very sweet. There's some nice balancing toastiness to the swallow. The aftertaste is surprisingly astringent like Gin with a mild kick of alcohol kicked in. Wonderfully different and remarkably drinkable. Full bodied with a low level of carbonation.

 558 characters

Photo of kevinlater
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
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

 942 characters

Photo of 4ster
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ssmack
4.02/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Murky dark brown with copper highlights. Half inch of mixed beige head but I had to pour hard to get it. Fine carbonation at the surface. Some lacing but no retention.

I can smell the juniper. Brown sugar and roasted grain. Delicious.

Wow. Tons of taste. The juniper works very well with hops. Roasted grain forward with juniper at the edge of the palette which lingers withe the hop bitter aftertaste.

Medium feel with no carbonation. Warmth from alcohol.

A very pleasant surprise for me. I will search this one out again. Great winter ales.

 546 characters

Photo of Molson2000
4.01/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up during a trip to Baton Rouge. Not my first Sahti, but my first Sahti that was brewed in Finland. Excited to try this one, as it is also my first beer from Finland.

The beer pours a dark brown-orange color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the caramel and toffee malt. I don't get the juniper in the aroma. That being said, the juniper is present in the flavor. I also get some smoked malt and and toffee, as well as a little bit of chocolate. All of the flavors meld well together and make an enjoyable beer. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 568 characters

Photo of joemcgrath27
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ivyman
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of RedAleMan
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of BeerBucks
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of dbrauneis
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a semi-opaque (because of the darkness of color) mahogany in color with a finger tall beige head. The head reduces to some extremely thin patches and a much thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate lacing is observed.

S: Aromas of malty sweetness with hints of caramel and toffee in addition to juniper.

T: The flavor is dominated by the juniper with other woody hints and there is some definite malt sweetness as well (with more caramel than toffee).

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth with some dryness in the finish.

O: Very interesting flavor profile and aroma with so much of the juniper presence. The beer was easy to drink but not really something I would call sessionable.

 736 characters

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of Long813
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of Florya
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of bigred89
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of JTuomi
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of Mebuzzard
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid Sahti beer right here. Out of the bottle the pour is cola-like, but in the glass it's more of a dark caramel or leather. Murky with an off-white head that settles to a relatively thick collar.

Whaff of caramel and cocoa at first sniff. Some vanilla and oak. Deeper nose-ful detects herbal spice and juniper, of course. Subtle and not in yo face. The malt is more pronounced.

The caramel and cocoa shift a bit in the flavor with more of a sharpness from the juniper. Almost reaches and anise or licorice taste, but backs down. Dark bread and rye come and go.

Finish is a bit hot and pepperminty, but not really. Has that herbal spice to it. The juniper cannot be ignored

 683 characters

Photo of nullbort
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of Georgiabeer
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm a fan of juniper, and therefore of Sahti. Not a lot of examples around, so it's nice to find one I haven't tried. This one is billed as having been brewed with juniper branches. Pours a slightly murky brown with a medium head that fades to a thin cap. Smells malty, but with a delicate juniper note. The taste is nice. Very malty, and with a little bit of a vinous, fruity note- perhaps prunes, and a nice note of juniper. Clean and light in the mouth. Not the resinous explosion of juniper I'm looking for, but very pleasant nonetheless, and it is billed as an "Arctic Ale" rather than as a traditional Sahti.

 614 characters

Photo of yancot
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of biegaman
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I expected more white snow from the Arctic Circle! Once you're done rolling your eyes and I have your attention back, let me seriously point out that the beer does in fact pour with very little head. I should also clarify that what's in the glass is not butterscotch pudding, though it kind of looks it, but actually a traditional Finnish beverage known as Sahti. Unfamiliar with it? So I am.

Having only tried a few prior to this I've little basis for comparison. But this one has a distinct bitterness in the aroma that's not quite like anything else; its special ingredient - juniper twigs - likely has something to do with it. This boldly malty, semi-sweet, semi-smoky bouquet is similar (by no means identical!) to the coastal, 'beach barbecue' smells of a briny, earthy, peaty scotch.

Arctic Circle Ale consists of a nice tapestry of flavours: spicy rye grain, softly bready barley, hints of sooty peat and kettle caramelization, as well as a little bit of citrusy, gin-like character from the juniper. It tastes like raw almonds and fruitcake at its base though heavier, more serious malt and bruised banana flavours usher those notions out along with some help from the alcohol.

Indeed, befitting to its name, Arctic Circle will certainly warm you on a cold night - this 7.3% isn't impolite but does seem the size of a dump truck. On the finish, any previous notions of sweet dried fruits turn immediately stewed. Alcohol doesn't interrupt or deter drinkability - sitting fireside with a heavy blanket, this warmth in fact adds to the enjoyment - but this one is open about its strength.

If this beer sounds different from anything else on the market it's because it is. Arctic Circle Ale is bound to be a true discovery for most people. A real tough one to properly assess without much experience with Sahti, the only opinions I can really share are that I enjoyed it and found it a deeply interesting ale. This one is absolutely worth the adventure and exploration.

 1,984 characters

Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a brownish body, some red tint, with voluminous head and lace and contains an aroma of some sweet malts, pick up a little rye in there, sweetness is caramel/toffee variety, along with touch of citric hops and that floral, spicy juniper smell is noticeable. Light, easy to drink body, as I get some of the rye which helps smooth it out and gives off a touch of bread and there is some sweet caramel and toffee as well. The juniper is noticeable and adds a snap to finish but the balance is there and nothing is overpowering. A very pleasant beer that warmed up ever so slightly as I "nursed" it.

 601 characters

Photo of Jwren5
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of MarkyMOD
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Arctic Circle Ale from Malmgårdin Panimo
3.93 out of 5 based on 143 ratings.
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