Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale | Ninkasi Brewing Company

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85
very good
174 Reviews
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Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt AleSleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company
Oregon, United States
ninkasibrewing.com

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Called 'Dark Double Alt' on the label.

Seize the season with Sleigh'r. Layers of deeply toasted malt are balanced by just enough hop bitterness to make it deceivingly drinkable. Paired with a dry finish, Sleigh’r is anything but your typical winter brew.

An Alt ferments with Ale yeast at colder lagering temperatures. This effect gives Alts a more refined, crisp lager-like flavor than traditional ales. The Alt has been “Ninkasified” raising the ABV and IBUs. Sleigh'r has a deep, toasted malt flavor that finishes dry and balanced.

50 IBU

Added by msubulldog25 on 01-08-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
174
Ratings:
583
Avg:
3.78
pDev:
11.9%
 
 
Wants:
34
Gots:
100
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 174 | Ratings: 583
Photo of Metalmonk
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gotta dig the Slayer logo font, a band my youth would have never been the same without. (The old stuff still rules!) And gotta dig msubulldog25, who sent this my way, a guy my beer experience would be lacking without.

This is a beautiful beer, plain and simple. Deep burgundy red shoots through dark brown. Rusty root beer jeweled in crimson. The head is a light tan, super foamy and super creamy.

Great nose, too. Piney hops embedded in a spicy holiday ale melange. Cinnamon, clove, nutmeg. They could have just as easily sold this as a winter warmer. Aroma-wise, anyway.

Taste-wise, hops are prickly and ever-present, yet never eclipse the spicy, malty character that is the main essence of this beer. Those nice holiday pie-type spices pop through and reign as the features of the flavor. Hints of cola, bitter herbal tea and purple grape.

Thinnish body, but hardly watery, and the ample carbonation keeps it alive and kicking.

I'm not an alt expert, but this one is clearly more northwest winter warmer, or even American red, than an authentic German altbier. Seems to me anyway. And that's just fine, because it's the quality that counts, and this one delivers.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: pours a deep amber to light brown color. wonderful garnet hues. a finger or so of an off white head forms. good strong retention and leaves behind a frothy lacing. strong brightness and clarity when held up to the light. a really nice looking beer.

Smell: strong malts, with notes of nuts, caramel, chocolate, and a hint or roastiness. some fruitiness comes through, possibly from yeast or malts, not quite sure.

Taste: opens up with some fruity esters, notes of apples to pear, possibly some dark fruits. malts take over with big notes of chocolate, toasted grains, some nuttiness, and a hint of roastiness. light alcohol presence. hops may play a minor role in some flavors but never apparent enough to pick out individually.

Mouthfeel: nice full malty body. medium to full feel. some chewiness to it. exceptionally smooth and clean. hop bitterness is moderate. slightly warming feel.

Overall: certainly a style that is almost missing from the American craft beer scene, if not my area at the least. This beer does a great job of pushing the boundaries of the style while still keeping close to the things that matter most about it. In my opinion this is what the Sticke is all about. Overall this beer is a great addition to the area and something that will certainly be picked up again.

 1,310 characters

Photo of stoutfiend27
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bomber received in the latest with james...

a-pours a dark cola brown color with ample carb bubbles as it fills the glass....small one finger slight off white head..

s-rich nutty malts...reminds me a lot of naughty goose....chocolaty and roast...

t-zero hops..this is all malt...rich caramel and toffee...some nougat and a bit of nuttiness...finishes rich

m-creamy and smooth...carbonation is great and this really coats the mouth well...

d-easy drinking and would def seek this out again

overall another solid brew sent my way...thanks again bro

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Photo of ckeegan04
4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark brown with vibrant ruby highlights when held up to light. Solid two finger light brown head with excellent retention. Leaves behind sheets of brown foam as I drink it.

S - Rich, nutty maltiness with an earthy spice to it. A touch of sweet caramel comes through as the beer warms. A faint floral hoppiness deep down in it as well.

T - Roasted nuts and lots of malt up front. An earth spiciness lies underneath. Lots of roasted malt throughout, especially as the beer warms. A touch of tobacco gives it a little edge. Light bitterness in the finish.

M/D - Medium bodied and very easy going. The tastes all play together very well.

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Photo of industrialswill
4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This could very well be my first double dark alt. It's quite good.
Dark brown, nicely carbonated. The smell hints of hoppyness and roasted malt. Very smooth and balanced beer.
This bomber didn't last very long!
Another winner from Ninkasi and a nice way to treat yourself on a cold, grey winter night.

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Photo of Offa
4.12/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an excellent, full-bodied beer, fairly balanced, interesting with good complexity.

Very dark copper-brown, it has a medium tan head steadily shrinking to a creamy thin top, then foamy ring and a little lace.

Aroma is dark caramelised, very toasty barley with dry leaves, hint of wood, very toasty and caramelly overall with hint of caramelised bacon.

Taste is a lot of toasted barley (singed, almost burnt), caramelised dry leaves and wood, black pepper. A burnt-pepper bitterness just dominates dark toffee sweetness at finish but backs off before becoming too bitter. Bitterness lingers with some hints of sweet, dark dried fruits and a light winey element. Bitterness is just a touch too assertive at end but it has good character and flavour. Feel is good, solid, not heavy.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.11/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Ninkasi Brewing Co. "SLEIGH'R Dark Doüble Alt)
12 oz. brown glass bottle, no freshness dating
$1.99 @ Wegmans, Malvern, PA

You've got to hand it to Ninkasi, they've done a great job with the name and label on this beer. I just couldn't pass it up.

Now, it doesn't hurt that I'm a fan of Altbier, either, and that I've traveled to German, so I can honestly say that in my opinion they've nailed the style.

But what style? Well of course this is a "DOÜBLE" alt ale (I think we can forgive them for the false umlaut because "Sleigh'r" obviously references heavy metal, and they're just joking with it), and the obvious connections would be Zum Uerige's Sticke Alt and Doppelsticke, or even Schumacher's Latzenbier (although not nearly as strong), but what I'm getting at is that the malt and yeast character are correct. You could go back and forth all day doing comparisons and trying to place it, but why bother? It's an alt, and a strong one at that.

It's a very dark mahogany in color, mainly clear, and it displays a short head of tan. The aroma offers notes of plum and other not-so-drescript dark fruits over an almost-burnt sugar-like maltiness (German examples tend to display more noble hops). It's medium bodied and smooth with a fine-bubbled, slightly restrained carbonation (German examples seem to be fuller and a bit more carbonated, even "vom fass"). It's fairly well-hopped at 50 IBUs, with a surprising balance between bitterness and nutty, toasty, and darkly caramelish malts, and notes of roasted, but not acrid, malt also help to balance it. What hops are present in the flavor appear grassy and herbal, and perhaps even spicy (although that might be the 7.2% ABV talking!).

It's really nicely pulled together. Balancing an alt this perfectly can be a challenge, but they've done it, and kept it remarkably drinkable even at 7.2%. Worth trying!

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Photo of Stigs
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - pours with a bit over a finger of slightly creamy, thick light tan colored foam. the beer is mostly clear, very deep amber in color. small patches of wet lace left behind.

S - rich chocolately malts, toasted nuts, crusty bread, and malted candies.

T - begins with traces of porter-like roasted malt, chocolate, roasted nuts and a slight bit of coffee before turning sweeter. caramel, toffee, and some dark fruits creep in. light bit of citrusy and earthy hops come alongside moderate bitterness.

M - thin to medium bodied, with moderate and fizzy carbonation. sweetness brings some dryness as well, though goes down a bit oily. finish only slightly chalky.

D - nice balance, warming but not harsh, and overall pretty tasty. very well suited for the winter months.

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Photo of ebrauser
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 22 to a pint glass

Appearance: Reddish brown with a thick, slightly tan head that bounces a little with a touch. The beer itself is crystal clear and leaves a slight lacing

Aroma: Spicy and woody, full but not particularly rich.

Flavor: Spicy with lots of dark fruits abounding within the malt. A little syrupy sweet with brown sugar, though hops break through to wrap up the taste with bitterness then spice.

Mouthfeel: About a 3/5 thickness but not coating. Feels a lot like a root beer.

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Photo of flexabull
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear and dark amber color with a nice white head, decent lacing as well.

Aromas are of baked apples, roasted malts, caramel, and earthy hops.

Taste is very malty, some cocoa, caramel, toasty dark breads, and baked apples. Finish is crisp, warming, with earthy hop flavors. This beer seems very fitting for cold weather.

Mouthfeel is good, full, smooth, and with snappy carbonation.

Drinkability is quite high. This is another solid beer, from a very nice lineup from Ninkasi. As mentioned before, this beer is a nice example of the "winter warmer" style.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"The wagon rests in winter, the sleigh in summer, the horse never."

--Yiddish proverb

Orange juice infused pecan brown that becomes glowing russet when backlit with bright morning sunshine. The upper third of the glass is filled with an attractive chunk of golden beige hued foam that has a moonscape surface and is sticky enough to lay down chunks and thick sheets of lace.

The nose is toasted and earthy and musky and herbal. Not quite as dark as a brown ale, more like a Double Dark Alt (just as the label says). It smells a little Oktoberfestish, only more interesting. This could be pretty good stuff.

Like most everything from Ninkasi Brewing, Sleigh'r is damn good beer. The name and the label don't really match the style, but so what. There are plenty of heavily spiced and highly hopped winter brews already. There's nothing wrong with a delicious change of pace once in a while.

This characterful brew works because malt flavor and sweetness is perfectly balanced by hop flavor and bitterness. Flavors include toasted brown bread covered with shredded tea leaves, ripe apricot, bitter citrus peel and a hint of black pepper. Most alts aren't this fruity or this complex.

While the mouthfeel is on the lighter side for the ABV, it's so impressively soft and creamy that the score seen above was an easy call. Everything is working so well in combination that drinkability is through the roof.

With the possible exception of Tricerahops Double IPA, everything that I've had from this brewery has been as solid as granite. Sleigh'r is a pretty cool name, but this is a beer that should be available all year round.

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Photo of RickS95
4.09/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Amber brown in color with plenty of clarity. Fits the style. The head is what's gorgeous and really makes the score here. It's a creamy foam up top. Different sized bubbles, but cream is the word of the day. Decent retention from the finger and a half thick head, the color is a light tan. Full lace.

All malt. Smells like dessert. Caramel, milk chocolate, expresso scents come wafting up. No sign of hops, it really does smell like a yummy dessert.

The scents in the nose becomes flavors on the tongue with the caramel, chocolate, and coffee being accounted for. However, the chocolate is more bittersweet and the coffee is no longer sweet. Hop presence is clearly noted/Noble.

An initial burst of sweetness from all the malt is quickly offset by plenty of bittering agents. It's got some balance, though the overall score favors bitterness over sweetness. For a while, it smooth and creamy, but that gives way to a strong, lingering bitterness. All the while you can feel the sweetness trying to make a comeback, but the bitter is just a little stronger.

Overall, it's a really good beer and shouldn't necessarily be a winter beer as this would be good year round with that dry bitter finish. Really happy a friend from just north of the Washington-Oregon state line sent me this.

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Photo of Magpie14
4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: reddish amber, maybe more like a light crimson with brown edges. Not much for head but did contain a thin and filmy lace starring back at me from the opposite side of the glass

S: husky and sweet roasted malts, toasted nuts (peanuts), caramel sweetness

T: husky dark roasted malts with sweetness of soft chocolate and strong caramel. Flavors of toasted redskin peanuts in the mix. Reminds me of the nuts that were under the heat lamp in the stainless steel trays, at the candy store....oh yeah. Beer is very well balanced and delightful

M: smooth, just a bit dry, crisp and yet creamy characteristics. Overall a clean, mild body and pleasing throughout

D: easily drinkable! I got this one on draft at the Belmont Station and they served it at the correct temp allowing the flavors to really challenge the palate. Wonderful beer!

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Photo of Libeertarian
4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I guess this one's technically a "Sticke" what with the slightly higher alcohol content, more robust malt presence, and bolder hop character than is called for in a regular Altbier. Poured this fellow into a "Stange," as this is the suggested appropriate glassware. In my eyes, it would seem more at home in a standard pint, a stein, or even a snifter. No matter, a good ale either way. Its color is a fairly clear copper-brown, reminded me of a scotch ale at first, but then I decided it was a lighter hue than the ruby-brown of that style. The head, from the side, is a uniformly-bubbled, light brown, but becomes whiter, chunkier, and finer towards the top. To me this indicates a relatively high viscosity, with some of the beer's body sticking to the medium-sized bubbles forming the head before trickling down. Head retained well. Aromatically it is definitely akin to a scotch ale, but not on the smokier/peatier side of that style. Just caramelized and toasted malts, some alcohol, and after a few whiffs, calling to mind first molasses, then brown sugar and cocoa. Toasted, somewhat smokey-tart maltiness is the first thing you notice once you finally imbibe. The sweetness is there, but not nearly as much as you might expect from the aroma. There are also notes of something fruity, strongest on the sides of the back of the tongue. Can't quite put my finger on it. With settling; bitter, piney hops balance out, and with swallowing; overcome, the malt character. This rich, smooth, medium- to full-bodied brew, with pleasant carbonation is one I'm glad I became acquainted with. Lots to notice here and I'm sure I missed something.

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Photo of KBomb
4.06/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A wonderfully colored beer: dark brown body that's nearly black, but a beautiful shade of crimson glows as light filters through the edges. A bold aroma of crystal malt and that distinct laggery alt smell. Taste is the moderately sweet alt flavor we expect and well balanced with an amped up dose of hops. The beer's only downside is that the hop flavor is a little one-dimensional, leaving a bitter aftertaste that lacks some character. Still, a flavorful beer with voluptuous texture. Great winter drinking when one needs a break from the typical winter stouts and ales.

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Photo of djeucalyptus
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a stunningly striking dark caramel brown. Voluminous two-plus finger head has impressive retention and leaves behind some beautiful lacing. wow.

aroma is fair... not as pungent as expected, but bright caramel malt, hints of vanilla, maybe a hint of dark cherry sweetness. Earthy and rustic. Smells pretty Altbier-like. Interesting.

Taste is beautifully balanced. Mellow and smooth yet still powerful, spicy and full flavored. malty yet there's still some substantial hopping. Sweet yet bitter, mellow yet pungent. Really well balanced, as a true Alt should be. just as the label implies, it's a good bit stronger than an average Alt, but the characteristics really shine through.

Mouth is full with some piquant bitterness hitting the tongue up front, then the caramel sweetness caresses the palette. A bit on the carbonated side but it fits the flavors nicely.

All in all, this is a pretty impressive brew. It doesn't really fit the name, nor the label, as it's neither heavy metal nor holiday spiced, but it's one impressively delicious brew that's definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Taken from notes on 2.18.11.

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Brownish amber with red edges. Off-white head that lingers. Good lacing.

S - Mostly boozy here.

T - Nutty, Spicey, and slightly like ginger bread.

D - Drinks extremely easy and smooth.

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Photo of ccrida
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draught at Henry's, Sleigh'r is mahogany with a fluffy off-white head with long last, leaving heavy sheets of creamy, foamy lace. Very nice.

Smell is very pure malt, not overly sweet, with a bit of toast, like the robust brown ale that it is.

Taste is similar, nice and rich, but balanced maltiness, clean with a pleasant warming sensation the only indication of the ABV.

Mouthfeel is creamy, with a medium body.

Drinkability is good, this is a nice malty brown, very well made, satisfying but dangerously smooth.

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Photo of snaotheus
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a large mug. Don't remember when or where I bought this bottle. I hope it's in good shape.

Pours a dark, rich brown with a big frothy beige head, looks like it's leaving some magnificent lacing down the sides of the glass. Looks fairly translucent, carbonation is not very active. Smell is nutty, rich, and malty.

Taste has a strange sourness to it which isn't too great, but it's nutty and bready, with a thick bitterness that is hard for me to describe, but it's pretty pleasant.

Mouthfeel is not too thick, but a little sticky. Tasty, drinkable beer.

 580 characters

Photo of pianoguy
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle No bottling info

Pours a brown body that turns reddish and becomes a little clearer when held up to the light. Off white head has good lacing, fair retention.

Smell is malt forward with chocolate and a nutmeg type of spice.

Taste is a nice mellow malt.It doesn't go crazy. it's just there. A little chocolate that leads to an aftertaste that has a marzen-like crispness to it. I can't taste the 7.20 alcohol...

Nice full feel

This beer fits like a glove. Malt forward without being a malt bomb... Followed by a wonderful Marzen like crispness...Bravo !

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Photo of Hoptometrist
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap into a shaker glass at Laughing Planet

A- Poured a dark mahogany color with a nice frothy off-white head that left glass coating lace

S- Big rich caramel and toffee notes, some cinnamon and vanilla, light cocoa notes

T- Rich caramel and toffee notes, some cherry flavors, breadiness, and light orange peel notes.

M- Smooth, medium body, low carbonation, finished semi-dry

O- Very malt forward and not really any hop presence, which is rare for a Ninkasi beer (even their oatmeal stout is pretty bitter hop bomb).

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Photo of wordemupg
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 16/12/15

A dark brown with a maroon glow when held to the light, a dump down the middle puts out a finger of foam that sits around for just a few sips but somehow manages to leave lots of random lace

S nutty dark chocolate, hard toffee, raisins, dark bread, some hard to place spice, a malt bomb for sure

T just a hint of cold coffee on top of what I smell, all malt but I suppose that's the goal, intense flavor, simple, strong, and solid

M medium weight, soft carbonation, fine grit, dry finish with nutty chocolate

O didn't really know what to expect but I rather enjoyed this one, a nice break from all the hop bombs I've been putting in my face lately

I bought this one for the label but its working well with this chilly afternoon, well worth a try if your ion a malty mood

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Photo of DamDweller
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ninkasi Sleighr Ale, 2010

Pour a dark dark brown color with a small cream colored head. Smells like nutty chocolate with a hint of mint. The taste is strong on chocolate and hops. It seems more like a porter than an altbier. The nutty smell isn't really there on the tongue as would be expected from an altbier while it also has strong carbonation. The mouthfeel is great. It drinks very clean and crisp. The sweet chocolate lingers on the tongue well.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Tuttle for breaking this out the night before Hopfest! Went into it thinking, ah, I dunno, not my style/thing, but figured, hey, good friend, opening beers, love Ninkasi, made it easy to go along.

Poured out a rich dark brown and red, but with ample clarity given its deep color. Very interesting aroma, maybe just because of the Christmas theme, I was getting caramel nuttiness, cinammon, taragon, tobacco, pepper, spice/clove. Really deep.

Taste, so much easier than I thought it would be. And more sweetness, but never becoming a 'sweet' beer, ample malt bill and other ingredients seemed to tame this bad boy. Nothing about hops to talk about. About the dryest finish of a beer of this style/vibe I've come around, not heavy, creamy at times, not super challenging, just lots to pick up on. Unique. When the wave of smooth and creamy hits you, you start wondering if there is some flaked oats used in this. Whatever they did, it was enjoyable.

Of course, it looks like a winter seasonal, we drank it in September, so i dunno if this aged and mellowed or whatnot, because that split bomber is my only insight, so I guess at the very least I can say this beer does just fine aged up to 9 months.

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Photo of jpbebeau
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into tulip; I don't have a slender cylinder.

A: Pours a very dark reddish-brown, with only the faintest bit of translucency to accentuate the color. A finger's worth of head quickly dissipates, leaving several soap-like bubbles clinging to the edge. Faint carbonation ever so slightly disturbs the surface at the center. As the volume of liquid decreases, more light is let through and an attractive orange hue reveals itself. Perhaps if I'd had a Stange I could've enjoyed the color through the whole glass.

S: Sweet malts, dark fruit—raisins. Mild, though.

T: Malts give way to sweet dark fruits, and the finish clings to my upper palate: hoppy, here. As the beer warms, the hops calm and I pick up a flavor of orange peel to accompany the color.

M: Refreshing amount of carbonation and not too heavy or thick; all pleasant surprises.

O: Really enjoyable after warming a bit; it'll be nice to work through the six-pack during these dark evenings.

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Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale from Ninkasi Brewing Company
3.78 out of 5 based on 583 ratings.
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