Nissefar | HaandBryggeriet

BA SCORE
86
very good
167 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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NissefarNissefar
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
HaandBryggeriet
Norway
haandbryggeriet.net

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Sigmund on 06-17-2007

BEER STATS
Ratings:
167
Reviews:
99
Avg:
3.87
pDev:
10.85%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
8
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 167 |  Reviews: 99
Photo of BeerTruck
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of bashiba
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a deep dark brown with a thick and creamy head.

The smell is loaded with rich dark chocolate and smokey roasted malts.

The flavor is very rich and malty. Loads of milk chocolate with hints of vanilla and caramel. A bit of dark smokey bitterness balances out the sweetness nicely.

The mouthfeel is creamy and rich.

Very nice. Almosy desert like in richness.

 368 characters

Photo of Dactrius
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of brentk56
4.31/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a brown color with a modest head that leaves a few shards behind

Smell: Licorice, caramel, subtle smoke and dark fruit

Taste: The licorice adds depth to the caramel flavors, up front, with the dark fruit flavors rounding out the profile in the middle; after the swallow, the smoke adds another dimension but the finish adds a holiday fruitcake character

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: A really interesting beer that shows a range of flavor

 496 characters

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle purchased from Leura Cellars.

Pours a pretty opaque and slightly reddish black (if you can have such a thing), with a pocked, large-bubbled faintly tan head. This dissipates quickly, only leaving a skeletal structure of big bubbles around the deep, black interior. Body looks somewhat heavy, somewhat fluid: it certainly doesn't have much stickiness to it, but it has some heft and hold very fine carbonation. It looks good.

Nose is rich, dark and roasted, but with plummy dark fruit undertones. Mild milk chocolate sweetness comes through, brushed with a liquorous, boozy brandy character. As often is the case with Haand's beers, there's a lick of smoke to go with it as well, giving a heartening, warming feel to the aroma overall. It's very good stuff indeed.

Taste is a lot lighter than I was expecting, with surprisingly little thickness or sweetness. Mild roasted characters come forward, with some cocoa-chocolate notes later on. Some faint cherry flavours round it out, but the back really just drifts away smoothly, and doesn't leave much of an impression on the back. Booze is well-hidden on the palate, though, without much prickle in the feel or heat in the flavour—the only hint is in the aroma.

Overall, I do like it a good deal. It's smooth and flavoursome, without being particularly heavy or bombastic. The faint Christmas overtones are there, but they're not overt, and it makes the beer feel more subtle and refined than it might have. Good stuff.

 1,486 characters

Photo of RickS95
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

It's awfully black with just the slightest bits of brown mixed in. While it might be a shade lighter around the edges, the light gets stuck and can't make it through. The head is light tan and fleeting. It's got a creamy look, but it's gone quickly with a light lace left behind.

The smell just explodes. It's a concoction of dark malts, chocolate, coffee and licorice. The scent is nothing exactly I'd associate with the holidays, it's an exception smelling beer.

The taste is like the smell only muted a bit. It's still a malt bomb, but all the ingredients are on their best collective behavior. Very malty with a slight tag-team fight of chocolate and coffee. Some hop presence in the finish, deep in the finish, provides some balance.

There's a lot of complexity and layers in this beer. It starts off sweet and thick. As it works its way back, the bitterness builds from the chocolate and coffee before finishing strong from the hops. It's viscous and sweet, it's bitter and full-bodied. The alcohol sends only a subtle message, just to show you it's there. The tongue is left slightly coated so you feel and taste the beer long after it's left your mouth.

While I have no idea how this is a holiday beer, I really liked it. It's got a stout or strong porter taste and feel. It's certainly not cheap, but it was very good.

 1,331 characters

Photo of Bouleboubier
4.29/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: jet black, opaque, cloudy, rose-tinted edges - creamy-foamy, tan-colored head with decent retention - is this unfiltered?...sloppy-looking - somewhat ample lace

S: coffee with cream, milk chocolate - prunes and mild ethanol emerge later

T: chocolate out the ass - roast coffee supporting well, mellow and smooth - granola-like malt flavors - definite black cherry and possibly rosemary

F: velvety-soft, fullish body - filling, yet it drops off wonderfully - could benefit from a little more viscosity, however, its current state certainly lends itself to better drinkability

O: another very enjoyable dark beer from HB - quite satisfying and arguably one of their best dark ales

 685 characters

Photo of dgilks
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Opaque dark brown colour with no real head. Okay.

Rich, dark fruit aroma. Lots of almost rum and raisin notes. Good toffee aroma. Nice.

Sweet malt with plenty of caramel and toffee. Dark fruit abounds and some spice notes add interest. Moderately bitter which cleanses the palate.

Medium body with moderately low carbonation. Nice.

A tasty Old Ale. Good fruit, malt and spice balance and integration,

 404 characters

Photo of karatebartender
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of MRsojourner
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of KCM
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of bluejacket74
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, Batch 498 (2160 total bottles). Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown with an inch tan head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. It smells like dark fruit (raisins, plums, cherries), chocolate, caramel, and roasted malt. I think the taste is similar to the aroma, but with the addition of some berries and spice. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's creamy and coating with moderate carbonation. I think this is a good overall brew, I might have to pick up another bottle soon! At $8.99 a bottle, I think it's worth trying.

 561 characters

Photo of Arborescence
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of aasher
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of goblue3509
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a thick khaki colored head which leaves some nice lace on the glass. The aroma is of chocolate but then the aroma of sweet dark fruits, raisins, and plums. The taste follows suit, there is a chocolate backbone but then a belgian sweetness takes over before a big deep flavor of dark fruits takes place. There are raisins, plums, and red grapes that dance over the tongue. The mouthfeel is thick and moderately carbonated. Overall this is a very good beer, the taste is big and bold, it is a very complex solid beer.

 539 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ever have those moments when you are conflicted between a robust porter and an Belgian-style oude bruin? Yea, me neither. But the craftsmen at the Hand Brewery has brewed a beer just for the occasion if during the holiday season you crave such a thing.

And it's with that porter-ish theme that the kicks off. Medium-dark brown in color, the pour is moderately viscous but still delivers the exuberant carbonation to offer a somewhat Belgiany exercise. A controlled billow of foam rises to the rim and carries a mocha-stained whipped cream cap that retains and laces with bold confidence.

Aromas of chocolate, nutty coffee, starchy malt, and freshly roasted coffee beans leap out at first. However, a quick counterpart of twangy under ripened berries come closely behind for a lightly vinous scent of red grape, green apple, and plumb skin scent.

Robust flavors of chocolate, smooth toffee, coffee, and walnuts all strike the front of the tongue with an early promise of sweetness, succulent, and masculine quality. But the agreement is compromised with a sharp and piercing tartness of dark fruit flavor- black cherry, blackcurrant, plumb, red grape, and blackberry slice right into the sweeter and roastier taste of porter for a decidedly "mature" and "seasoned" flavor that creates as much interest as it does distraction.

Medium-full in body, the beer's early fullness is predictably thinned out by the fruit-inspired tartness. What's left is a tawny middle palate of conflicting coffee-ish astringency, fruity tartness and lingering powdery sherry character.

Nissefar is a challenged taste that circulates around porter-like roots but with a seemingly forced "aged" or "cellar-like" character. The result is a stale and uneven Belgian-tasting "Oude Bruin" type of beer. No one aspect of the beer seems genuine, but it seems to be an invention unto itself and offers a charming rusticity that's part of the problem and part of the charm.

 1,945 characters

Photo of shleepy
3.81/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Black, or at least very dark brown. Thick brown-ish head with good retention.
S: Lots of caramel, roastiness; hints of spices.
T: Lots of coffee flavor, in addition to the caramel/roastiness/spices.
M: Surprisingly not too heavy. Smooth texture and medium body for the style.
O: A balanced holiday ale. 4

 307 characters

Photo of andant
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of AgentMunky
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a half-litre bottle into a Koningshoeven chalice. Batch 307. Bottled 7 September 2010. Total bottles: 3240.

A: Fluffy, tannish head. Mahogany and opaque. Good lacing.

S: Old yeast, only slightly stale, slightly fruity. Chocolatey.

T: Two different pours (the first half and the last half, with the yeast) result in two very different beers. The first is fruiter (berries), more carbonated, and (to my mind) more interesting. The second half is very nice; tastes almost like a stout. It's sweet and full of chocolate, flatter and more old ale-y.

M: Kinda dead.

O: I quite liked this beer! It's done well in its two years of bottle life. Recommended. Would have again.

 683 characters

Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of falloutsnow
4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from John's Grocery in Iowa City, IA
Bottled 07.09.10
Poured into a standard US pint glass

Nissefar combines smoked and roasted malt to very satisfactory conclusions in this winter-themed beer. The overall impression is of a sweet-smoke-stout with well-defined flavors that stand out, alongside a truly smooth and enjoyable mouthfeel that has both the right heft and carbonation levels. A definite one to revisit for sure.

Pours a very nice, medium-intensity tan head of super-dense, small bubbles reaching about 2-3cm. Head has excellent retention, taking many minutes to sink to a thick cap atop the beer. Leaves excellent lacing in its wake. Body is a dark brown to black, with a slightly lighter amber-brown color around the edges when held to a light. Carbonation is still visible streaming along the sides of the glass.

Aroma is pleasantly of roasted and smoked malt, not as intense as Aecht Schlenkerla's brews, but still noticeable This is supported by malt sweetness, mostly caramel, and some sweet cream component as well. Slight metallic (iron) tinge to back of aroma.

Tastes opens with some dark malt sweetness that quickly transitions to roasted malts, cream, and a bit of chocolate on the front of the palate. Smoked malt appears most at mid-palate, which becomes the central character that the sweetness, roastedness, and chocolate revolve around. This smoked flavor induces a mild sourness that prevents the other, sweeter flavors from becoming cloying. Closes out with chocolate syrup, leading to creamy roasted malts. Aftertaste is of mildly bitter roasted malts, char, smoke and coffee with cream.

Beer is medium bodied with fairly light, though still noticeable, carbonation, which produces a very smooth and slightly creamy overall mouthfeel. Phenols and ethanol provide very slight spiciness, appropriate for this winter-themed beer. The finish is very dry, again, seemingly on target for a roasted, smoky stout-like ale.

 1,955 characters

Photo of Chrily
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of klipper
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Snellgg5
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of OldTime
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Nissefar from HaandBryggeriet
3.87 out of 5 based on 167 ratings.
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