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Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale | Ninkasi Brewing Company

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Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt AleSleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale

Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Winter

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

Ninkasi website:
"7.2% alc./vol. 50 ibus."

Added by msubulldog25 on 01-08-2009

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Reviews: 167 | Ratings: 563
Photo of TBoneJones
4.18/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep mahogany, fairly rich in appearance with a moderate tan head that fades to leave some lacing.
Smells pretty nice actually, with fruity notes largely of sweet pear, banana, and there's also a hint of some spice, light cinnamon/ nutmeg.
Taste is toasty malts, a good balance of hops, underlying dark fruit, and some peppery banana. The pepper note lingers through the finish, leaving a mildly numbing bitterness. What a great balance of sweet and bitter throughout it all. There's a surprising complexity for me here.
Well-carbonated and medium-chewy feel.
This is a terrific departure from the usual over-abundance of certain other styles. A holiday winner.

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Photo of gpogo
3.13/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark brown, clear, with a cream colored head. Head dissipated and left a thick lacing. Decent carbonation keeping a foamy cap.

A- Clean malt aroma with a light fruitiness. Slight toasted nutty malt aroma. Seems a bit unbalanced, light on the maltiness.

T- Initial bitterness. Toasted barley taste, almost a burnt malt flavor. Finishes clean with a faint astringent taste.

M- Smooth medium body with moderate-high carbonation.

D- Not bad, but I wouldn't seek it out.

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Photo of mobrado
3.87/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Great looking beer. Glowing dark brown with a creamy off-white head. A decent Winter seasonal, but MUCH stronger and hoppier than a real Alt. Considering the seasonal competition, I wouldn't get it again though.

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Photo of Philousa
3.52/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, clear ruby against the light, dark brown, almost black in normal light. A wispy tan/grey head leaves occasional rings on the glass. Aroma starts with bitter cranberry and slight raspberry, with a cherry cola and meaty, umami aroma, and a slight smoke. Flavor is full of malt. A tangy, burnt flavor lingers on the back of the throat the whole time with a dominant burnt biscuit and toffee flavor. There is a certain flavor that is present in all dark German beers that is tart and slightly smoky, this has a lot of it. It's uniquely German, but the strong hop profile makes it more palatable to me. The bitterness is balanced, which ultimately makes this an aggressively malty beer. It's smooth and creamy with a light body for how dark it is and how high the ABV is. Very drinkable and pleasantly surprising winter beer.

Note to reader: I had a raspberry candy before imbibing and after review of other reviews, this may have had an affect on my perception of this beer.

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Photo of gandres
3.39/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

From Bottle 12 Oz, poured on a wine glass with diner
Appearance: Color: dark amber clear, minimal head
Taste: Minimal follow through
Smell: Aroma: malty smell with slight wood aroma

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Photo of archyquaffer
3.43/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 22 oz bottle into a standard pint glass. The label features a 19th century Santa with holly and falling blue snowflakes on a dark winter night. This bottle was bought in April at a sale price. A semi-aggressive pour yields a 1/8 inch tan head that sticks around for awhile, coating the glass. The lacing left on the glass resembles Dinwoody rock art....The color is a moderate yellowish-brown with ruby highlights. I smell malt and floral hops, which are well balanced in the taste. I detect a slight bit of sour apple, which lingers in the aftertaste along with a citrusy hop bitterness.

I was drinking some of this around the holidays, and thought it bit hoppy for my taste. Oftentimes, I think many craft beers, particularly those brewed on the west coast, suffer from too much of a good thing (hops). The hops in this beer seem a tad bit toned down after the interim of about 4 months, and I found myself enjoying this a bit more than at Christmastime. Now that it's come down a bit in price, I'm liable to get another bomber or two before it's gone.

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Photo of velosuds
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a clear pint glass. No freshness dating evident. Purchased for $3.79 at local regional grocer.

A-Pours a dark amber hue with a one and a half finger, light tan head. Modest retention with good lacing.

S-Caramel malt aroma with dark fruits, and some piney and citric hops. Pleasant.

T-Toasted caramel and chocolate malts with fruitcake type fruit and spice flavors.

M-Very smooth and balanced.

D-This is a very drinkable winter seasonal since it has a lot of flavor but is not filling. 7.2% ABV is masked very well. Competitively priced bomber at $3.79 to $3.99 but would be better if available in sixers of 12 oz. bottles.

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Photo of mdcrouser
2.53/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

That's an outstanding looking brew - steady head, chunky like snowfall on fence posts from the beginning, but it melts down a bit to only ring the glass. Like deep brown bricks, with hints of orange around the edges - strong looking beer.

The smell is disappointing at best - a puzzling combination of chalk, tube sock, and a hint of toasted malt.

Unique malt foundation - not sweet, just solid, with heavy hops to balance it out. Grassy, with a bit of cinnamon and other spice.

Good carbonation, it's just unfortunate that what's carbonated isn't that good.

Really didn't enjoy this one - just not my kind of beer.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.06/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

OK, ya know I'm a gonna have to do it...

Pours a dark rust colored amber as though the "Angel of Death" were "Raining Blood" into the glass...Two fingers of creamy smooth head dwindles "piece by piece" into a short crown, as though it were "necrophobic" and didn't wish to die....Medium carbonation promises some great drinking to come. Weird to say this, but it's a s though a Guinness Stout were laid upon the "altar of sacrifice" and all the aromas were captured and "reborn" into this ale. It's a near perfect copy, aroma-wise, of the World's best selling stout. Maybe, perhaps, "Jesus Saves" this from patent infringement through a couple of slight nuances, like a hint of allspice way in the back. You'd have to be "Criminally Insane" to think this didn't smell a lot like the aforementioned iconic ale of the Emerald Isle, though...maybe minus the super-heavy metallic notes of Guinness, though...The flavor is like a malt "epidemic" - very malt forward all through the drink, but particularly right upfront. There's a certain tang to it that, again, hearkens back to Guinness. I'm starting to get the feeling this isn't an accident...too much is similar. The malt tang gives way to a long, malty middle and then the hops kicks in, "postmortem" from the malt and leaves you with a nice, bitter wash. Not super cheap, not super expensive. Good beer, but unless you really like Guinness Stout, you'll think you spent too much money on the bottle.

What I like most: The Label artwork and beautiful appearance.

What I like least: the curious similarities to Guinness Stout.

Verdict: You can find this beer cheaper under a different name, but all old school Heshers have to drink it out of deference...

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Photo of jpbebeau
4/5  rDev +6.1%
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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Photo of Sark
3.48/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance- a nice easy pour yields a finger of velvet, light cream colored head that maintains the whole way down. A beautiful burnt orange-brown hue.

Smell- a bit of flavorful toffee sweetness, little hop character.

Taste- Not an attacking flavor, its mild malty character hits mid mouth and has some hop bitterness on the back end with some warming alcohol.

Mouthfeel- medium bodied, yet a bit thinner than expected.

Overall- A decent session beer. It's 10 below right now but I still can't quite call this something for winter with such a mild taste.

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Photo of MAB
3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Nice deep color, with a thick creamy head.
Definitely on the sweeter side of things, with some spices comming through as they should.
Ninkasi continues to impress. Very drinkable.

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Photo of Hophead101
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

blind beer #3 from flexabull

A:3.5 pours a very dark brown, almost black color. off white head that wasn't very big and didn't last too long. left a decent amount of lacing as it was consumed.

S:3.5 roasted, caramel malts. some spices in there. nothing too exciting or overpowering

T:3.5 very similar in taste as smell. caramel malts, roastiness, bread, biscuit, brown sugar. still getting some spice as well. also some dark fruit nestled in there.

M:3.5 decent. slightly thin at first. good carbonation.

D:3.5 so so. not too complex.

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Photo of MaltsOfGlory
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As far as I can remember, this is one of my favorite Ninkasi beers, but I haven't had it in a while, and the brewery has expanded a lot over the last couple of years. A interesting (and aggressive) pour yields a one and a half finger head into my standard pint glass. The head is about half creamy and fluffy looking and half somewhat soapy and bubbly, but that is probably due to the aggressive pour. The head is an extremely light brown, maybe even more off-white than light brown, that's how light it is. The lacing looks like it will be great, but we will have to see for sure as I get down the glass. The head retention was pretty good, it hung around for quite some time. Now, after about 5 minutes, I still have some bubbles on top of the body. The body is very dark, but for sure not black. It has some black in it, but also brown and ruby. Visibility is zero. I can't really see the carbonation due to the color. Overall it's a nice body, slightly unique for a winter beer - having red in it and all, but then again I'm not familiar with the style. Either way it's still a good look. We will see how the lacing goes, but this is a good looking beer so far. On the nose I get just a wonderful malt smell. Very full, rich, deep malt aroma. Roasty and chocolatey too. Perhaps a touch of coffee on the nose as well. Not a whole lot in the way of hops, and frankly not a whole lot other than the great malt smell. It's a solid 4, but a few other aromas could go a long way. With that being said, it still smells great. Yeah, this is a nice beer, pretty close to what I remember too. You get that nice, chocolatey malt flavor up front. Frankly it's not as dominating as I was expecting, which is a little disappointing, but it's not the end of the world. It's also extremely sweet, malty sweet. I like the sweetness, but it may be a hair too much. Not much going on in the way of hops at all. A little bit of spices perhaps, there seems to be something other than delicious malts going on here. Kind of like a cinnamon vibe. I doubt it's cinnamon that's in here, but something in that realm. This beer is more than just your average winter beer, but just by a little bit. I don't think it has enough to be a 4.5. It's a solid 4, but let it be known that it's a little more than just a nice malty beer. The mouthfeel isn't bad. It's slightly thinnger than I would like, but it's not bad. It for sure has some thickness to it, just not quite as thick as I want in a hearty winter beer. The carbonation is for sure low, but that works in a winter beer. It may be a hair lower than it should be, but overall it's good for the style. It has a slightly creamy feel to the mouth as well. Even though I really like the mouthfeel, it does have some areas it needs to improve on. It's really right in between a 3.5 and a 4. The lack of carbonation and body makes me want to give this beer a 3.5 for feel. However, the carbonation and body are both very close to being spot on, and I really like the slight creaminess, and really the overall feel, enough to give it a 4. For being 7.2% ABV, this beer is DAMN drinkable! I would have never guessed this beer was 7.2% if the bottle didn't say it. It really drinks like a 5.5% or a 6% beer, great drinkability. Overall it's a solid beer. Not the most amazing beer ever, but for sure one I will have again. There really isn't anything wrong with the flavor at all, it just doesn't have enough pizzazz to be more than a good beer. So, overall, it's a good beer.

The flavor really started to get sweet. The malts still played a big role, but I would say that the sweetness may have become more dominant.

The appearance turned out to be...eh, not bad. The lacing was there, but it wasn't that pretty. It was somewhat patchy and EXTREMELY soapy and bubbly. It didn't look like your average lacing at all, rather - worse than average. I'm not quite sure how to grade this because the head was nice. The body wasn't really amazing, but better than average I supposed, for sure unique regardless. The lacing wasn't bad, just...not my cup of tea. I'm going to give it a 3.5 for appearance. I could give it a 4 but...I wouldn't say I've cut this beer any breaks, but there have been a few grades that I gave a 4 to instead of a 3.5 already.

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Photo of Flightoficarus
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally getting around to trying this one!

A - Pours a deep, dark brown (almost black), with a two-finger off-white head. Head retention and lacing is on the creamy/thick side.

S - Alot going on here! Caramel, molasses, cocoa, nuttiness, a hint of fruits (orange, cherry), and subtle hops.

T - Superbly balanced. Taste is of roasted, cocoa/coffee like malts with some nutty and smoked/peat like tones (like a scotch ale), and finishes with a bouquet of subtle, floral hops. Right around the middle ground between malty and hoppy.

M - Medium bodied and light carbonation, with a semi-bready texture to it.

D - Pretty drinkable for 7.2%, but I still wouldn't session it.

Overall - A nice little gem in the winter ale/altbier categories, and with a rad name to boot! If you're looking for a solid, balanced beer that's on the darker side without being quite as bitter/roasted tasting as a porter or stout, you'll enjoy this one.

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Photo of RedBrewer83
4.18/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22 into tulip...

A: Pours a dark amber bordering on chocolate, ruby hints in the light, creamy tan head forms two fingers and leaves pretty good lacing as it falls, head retention is really pretty good, very pillowy.

S: Light caramel malt, toasty biscuit yeast profile, leather and faint tobacco, very earthy for an alt style. No real hop presence, surprising from Ninkasi, they usually dump them in by the bucketful regardless of the style...

T: Taste follows the nose very similarly, well balanced caramel malt, very toasty biscuit, tobacco and leather comes through a little more and adds to the complexity. The hops are present in the taste and come through in the finish to provide some nice bitters and crisp everything up. As it warms up more dark fruit flavors are noticed on the front of palate, definitely pick up on figs. Very nice flavor profile over all.

M: Very smooth, medium body with nice carbonation. Head retention throughout beer provides a nice creaminess that makes it even smoother and the alcohol is never noticed making this 7.2% brew very drinkable.

D: Very smooth and drinkable and as stated the abv goes unnoticed and the hops make it refreshingly crisp. Very well done Ninkasi. This is a solid altbier and very representative of the style, just wish it had a little more uniqueness for a winter beer, but can't fault it for style points.

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Photo of thepenguin
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: Pours a very dark brown with tinges of amber and a light tan head.

S: Rich, malty and nutty with toasted caramel, bread crusts, pine and dark fruits.

T: Malty, nutty and toasty with a good deal of grassy hop bitterness. Roasty and toffee-like, with a long toasty and bitter finish. The grassy, medicinal quality of the hops and the bitter roastiness comes across as a bit harsh.

F: A tad over medium-bodied, silky oily mouthfeel, understated carbonation, mild warmth.

Overall: Interesting aroma, but the bitterness really throws off the balance. This probably would have been a great and certainly more drinkable beer if the bitterness had been dialed back a bit to let the malty brown ale quality take over.

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Photo of stoutfiend27
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
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 ricke49
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance - nice dark red color with a moderate head

smell - somewhat subdued compared to other Ninkasi offerings, primarily because of a minor amount of hop influence.

taste - a very smooth nicely balance malty flavor with some sweetness, clipped off just right by a background hop note.

mouthfeel - silky smooth

drinkability - excellent....perfect for a 7.2 abv brew - just up to the point of being boozy, without being so.

This is a delightful fall/winter beer, and my favorite Ninkasi brew to date. Reasonably good buy at $3.59 per bomber (still that's eqivalant to $11.75 per six-pack....which seems real high when I can pick up Jubelale for a $7 per six-pack all winter long).

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Photo of 100floods
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

SLAAAYYER!!! kinda.

Pours a nice crisp herbal, off-brown, cream white head. Interesting balance between malt and hops. It leans towards the sweeter side. This is a very malty, dark, herbed beverage. I feel like I'm drinking an extremely toned down shot of Fernet. The flavors remind me of winter. There's definitely a nice pine malt/hop bitterness to it that seems to be the main theme of this drink. Notes of pine and annis are definitely in your face. I've had a cookie that resembles the flavor of this beer. The mouthfeel is smooth and is easy to drink. The herbal notes are definitely not bad, but I think after one of these bottles, I'm good for a week or two. This is my third bottle in two months. It definitely makes you want drink it again, just not in a hurry. This is definitely one of the more unique holiday beers.

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Photo of Elimination
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A fairly light black slightly see through no head

A bit Of roasted malt in the nose some toffee and Carmel but it's hard to pick up

Taste is slight roast malt coffee chocolate but nothing stands out to hard I'm a little disappointed by this usually ninkasi is a brewery that really jumps out and brings it strong but this is sort of weak

Very light mouthfeel despite the abv

A pretty good beer overall but doesn't do a whole lot for me

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Photo of Ghenna
3.6/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with respectible off white head.

Nice roasted malt/coffee smell. Taste is a little dry. You get a lot of the roast flavors, but not much else. Not a sweet beer, not a bitter beer, definitely a roasty beer.

Beer is medium Bodied, which leads to it being fairly drinkable. Roast flavor though asks for a little of your time between sips.

I'm not sure how to feel about this beer. Initially, this is my first experience with an alt (which I bravely will be brewing in the next few weeks). With a beer this dark I usually expect it to deliver a little more sweetness. It smells delightful, to be sure, but taste is simply roasty. If that is your bag then this beer will be awesome. I think it would be much improved if it had a bit more sweetness to it. Then again that may well just be the style.

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Photo of N3rdM3t4l
4.23/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber purchased in Dec been ageing. Loved it in Dec hopefully it works even better now. Poured into standard pint.

A: dark red/brown like a the child of a red ale and a porter. Not much head from this 7.5 month old bottle and a sparse cap. Leaving adequate lacing.

S: Ethanol and dark malt. Big chocolate on the nose too. Reminds me of a 16% stout I once loved.

T: lots of chocolate taste, a little roasty, and a bit like slightly burned biscuits. The hops have setteled down a bit from what I remember but still there. A slight bitter note at the end then ethanol warming.

M: thicker side of medium with just enough chew. Smooth with just a bit of carbonation.

O: Good stuff at this age, the alcohol seems to be stronger and the hops a little less. Might have let it sit a little too long but it is still one of my favorites.

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Photo of santomark
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass

A - Poured a very deep, rich brown, almost black, with a thick latte, tan colored head. Retention was a bit slow, maybe it was the way I poured this one?

S - Not much going on in the nose, mild roast, dark fruit smell, figs, plum, molasses, everything was very subtle to the nose.

T - The taste accompanies the smell. Very mild roasted malt, coffee, latte, reminded me very much of brown bread ingredients, mild fruit like figs and plums, a tad of a charcoal spicy finish.

M - Medium to Heavy body, mild carbonation, lingers in the throat for a bit.

O - Aside from boosting my egoism and having a name that made me want to enjoy this with Hell's Angels in a pool room. This was very subtle, everything is balanced, just wished it was brought out more. With a name like Sleigh, this is not a beefed up beer of this style.

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Photo of squaremile
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a 6 month old bottle. Pours a diet coke caramel brown with a small head that remains for awhile. Smell is faint sugar cookie and yeast. Taste is mild and pleasant. Most of the hop bitterness present fresh has disappeared but has left a sweet and refreshing drink. Figs, fruitcake, apricot, brown sugar. The mouthfeel is thin and appropriate for the style. Pretty dry finish. The alcohol is very well hidden. A pleasant beer, ignore the letter rating.

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Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale from Ninkasi Brewing Company
3.77 out of 5 based on 563 ratings.
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