Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale | Ninkasi Brewing Company

Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt AleSleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale
BA SCORE
3.76/5
587 Ratings
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
Ranking:
#19,838
Reviews:
177
Ratings:
587
pDev:
12.23%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
34
Gots:
102
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 587 |  Reviews: 177
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt and caramel. Taste is much the same with a herbal hop flavor on the finish. There is a medium bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but I am liking the smell over the taste.

 472 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a crystal dark copper with a thin light tan head.

Nose is light fruity esters, pleasant but mild Nose gives way to some nice smoke, light coffee and roasted malt.

Medium to full mouthfeel with nice balance and a light champagne carbonation.

Flavors start malty and quickly go to big bitter hop and a grapefruit bitter finish. Front sweet malty character and midpalate are nice but short and this one ends with a big and long lasting bitter finish. I get a nice double alt character to this with some roasted malts, hints of smoke and roasted coffee. I get no winter spice character at all.

Nice beer; not what I expected but very good albeit not real comlex. A bit of an identity crisis on this one. Smokey with coffee tones with food.

 749 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

i like the seasonal beers and holiday beers that dont necessarily pertain to the holidays in terms of flavor, or at least arent restricted by them. this is a great example of that, a big malty red ale that certainly works in a winter setting, but is quite a bit more versatile than something called a christmas beer, or even a winter warmer. lots of sturdy body to this, good carbonation and a hearty feel to it, creamy with the head, but pretty clean and drinkable for being such a malt forward brew. you dont see many of these stronger alt types, so its a nice change of pace too. its fairly sweet in the middle, with notes of brown bread, bran muffin or something, brown sugar, red apple, and raisin. by the end though its on the drier side, aided there by a little hop bitterness and some old world yeast strain that cleans it right up. almost refreshing in the right context for being a little bigger. this is one of the better seasonal releases for ninkasi i think, and a neat winter beer that has life before and well beyond christmas. somewhat of an oddball style, but they have brewed it well.

 1,102 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.63/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of biboergosum
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle - more Christmas goodies to get through, before that swath of Beer Advent Calendars does me in, come December. Oh, I do loves me some thoroughly unnecessary umlauts!

This beer pours a clear, dark red brick amber hue, with two Santa's belt-worthy fingers of densely foamy, puffy, and rocky ecru head, which leaves some decent bands of cobwebbed lace around the glass as it slowly ebbs away.

It smells of bready, crackery caramel malt, biscuity toffee, dry cocoa powder, edgy black domestic and Middle Eastern fruit (sounds better than plum and fig, eh?), wet ash, thin red wine must, brown sugar extract, and weirdly prominent leafy, earthy, and weedy hops. The taste is much more sharply hop-oriented - the metallic leafy, underripe melon and citrus, and wet pine needle sort - before that heady grainy, bready, and biscuity caramel malt pops its head up, alongside a reduced dark fruitiness, needling spiciness, a touch of benign yeast, hints of cold coffee grounds, and a sidling booze warming.

The carbonation is fairly understated, with a bare, unassuming frothiness for the most part, the body an adequate medium weight, and a bit too cutting on the high and side palates to be deemed particularly smooth. It finishes less sweet than I was expecting - the alcohol, dry maltiness, and strangely subsumed spices ruling the day.

A strange, and very American re-telling of an old European story - y'know, boozing and hopping up an Altbier, not to mention trying to pass it off as a holiday seasonal. Well, they seem to have succeeded on all fronts, as despite this one's weird astringency, it still goes down well in the face of snowfalls and stupidly overcrowded shopping expeditions alike. Oh, and I suppose I can let some "Bloodline" roll, in honour of punny names everywhere.

 1,801 characters

Photo of dmorgan310
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of SocalKicks
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of largadeer
2/5  rDev -46.8%

Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.11/5  rDev +9.3%
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!

 1,871 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Consumed at a recent DC area tasting. Served in a SAVOR snifter.

Pours a moderate caramel-brown color. Really, really murky without any real head formation or lacing afterward. The nose brings some light caramel and toffee plus a bit of bready easta nd some light toast. Flavor is mostly just a touch of caramel with some very light hopping and then some bread. Mouthfeel is medium with a bit of booze. Not bad, but not something I'd look for again.

 450 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.77/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of smithj4
3.86/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of atrocity
3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of paulish
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +9%
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.

 1,629 characters

Photo of mdfb79
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a deep mahogany brown with one inch of off white head and light lacing. Medium carbonation evident.

s - Smells of sweet malts, dark fruit, bready malts.

t - Tastes of caramel malts, bready malts, dark fruit, and roasted malts. Little bit of a bitterness to it as well.

m - Medium mody and moderate carbonation. Smooth and creamy.

d - I thought this was a decent beer. Some nice roasted and sweet malts but nothing really jumpoed out about it to me. Would give another shot.

 530 characters

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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Sleigh'r Dark Doüble Alt Ale from Ninkasi Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.76 out of 5 with 587 ratings
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