Hesjeøl | HaandBryggeriet

BA SCORE
87
very good
98 Ratings
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HesjeølHesjeøl
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
HaandBryggeriet
Norway
haandbryggeriet.net

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The name translates to "Hay Pile Beer".

Made from 3 grains, barley, oats and rye and fermented with our special wild house yeast.

28 ibu. 21 ebc colour
Serving temperature 8 - 10 C or 46-50 F

Added by GbVDave on 02-03-2010

BEER STATS
Ratings:
98
Reviews:
60
Avg:
3.92
pDev:
8.67%
 
 
Wants:
9
Gots:
10
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 98 |  Reviews: 60
Photo of msmezher
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hesjeøl is the first beer from HaandBryggeriet I've had the pleasure of drinking. Not too smokey for being a smoked beer, and had a little sweetness in the malt. It poured with a little bit of white froth, and had a medium-full bodied texture. To me some beers really are an experience to drink, and some maybe more for their rarity than purely by their taste. Smoke beers, sour ales, chile beers are few and far between, and I think that counts for something. What I liked most about this beer was it was definitely out of the ordinary, and left me wanting more from Norway.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with an off-white, two-finger head that fades slowly to a thin layer and leaving some lace. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Hazy amber color. Nose is smokey wood. Flavor is a smokey, burnt wood. Not your usual harvest ale. Label has 7.0% ABV. Pricey at $9.45 for a 500ml bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

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Photo of fear025
3.54/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Aroma:Smells sweet, malty, a little bit smokey.

Appearance:Caramel in color, fantastic head, great retention.

Taste:This beer has a pretty bold flavor. Malty flavors and bitter hops abound in the foretaste. I can taste the mild smoke more through the mid and aftertastes. The nutty malt also comes through nicely in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel:Lots of carbonation, and a little astringency.

Drinkability:This is a unique beer, not very sessionable, but lots of flavor.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.1/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Chopp ao Beachwood BBQ, vá a cerveja:

A mix of orange brown, but leaning towards that darker color. Head and lacing are fine. No, it's not a smoky nose I'm getting, I'm getting more of a hopped nose. Grapey hops and floral aromas. It's not bad.

Hesjeøl is not very smoky; it's very subtle at best. It tastes more like it's Belgian, and not a great one at that. The first half of the glass was fine, slightly sweet from the malt and yeast, a tingle of pine, dry. The second half yields a little woddy smokiness as it warms, but also some raw veggie flavors. The aftertaste of aspirin-like bitterness makes the beer go down a little slower.

Unusual is the best way to describe this beer. I like seeing more smoked beer options, but at least showcase that flavor to a larger degree.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a light red with a firm finger of white head, some lace.

S: Hint of smoke, got some Belgian-type yeast esters, dark fruit.

T: Nice dark biscuity malt with a mild smoke character, for a smoked beer it's not coming to the forefront. For me, a saison type beer at it's base, dark fruit, some plum type flavours, rye spice, I liked it even if it's not what I expected.

M: Medium-bodied, smooth, soft carbonation, easy drinking.

D: HaandBryggeriet is super rare so I don't know how Beachwood got this. Definitely a try for something different, don't expect anything near Schlenkerla though.

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Photo of Xul
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy dark golden with almost volcanic carbonation running up through the body, capped by two fingers of frothy, off-white head. Retention is good and sticky lacing is left down the glass.

S: Smokey malts up front with a peat component, green apples, lemon zest, a moderate peppery spice, and some very light funk that blends with the peat and smoke.

T: Moderate smoke with some background roastiness up front, which gives way to light fruits - lemon zest, green apples, and some faint green grapes - over a rye base. Peppery spice comes in late, leading to a spiced, somewhat charred finish.

M: Medium bodied with low to moderate carbonation, has a pleasant smoothness.

D: Goes down fairly easy but the smoke, char, and spice keep it from being too quaffable.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Batch 254. Hmm, farmers required by law to make beer? Finally, a coercive act I have no problem with. This apparent relic of bygone days pours a not-quite-clear garnet-amber topped by a finger of thick off-white froth that tries to live forever but ultimately fails. Ah, the mortality of bubbles. The nose exhibits a healthy dose of peat smoke up front, almost like fiery oregano or something, with some wheat, grasses, and wood making up a rather rustic backdrop. The taste holds a rather more subdued smoky character, still fairly dark, that served as a compliment to the somewhat citrus-y and flowery wheat notes. Imagine a very subtly hopped wheatwine which was then nicely smoked. Good times, baby. The body nears heft, with a light carbonation and a somewhat dry feel. Overall, another good time from the Hand boys. Keep 'em comin', you crazy Norwegians!

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Photo of JohnnyP3
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 50cl bottle into an imperial pint glass. Batch 265, brewed on 19.01.10. Best before 24.03.12.

Pours a hazy copper with some gold highlights on the edges. Head consists of 2 fingers of white foam that gradually reduces to about one. Foam sticks to the glass very nicely. Some sediment pours from the bottle, adding some particles and cloudiness to the beer.

The scent of this beer is one of smoke, juniper berries, and some slight pine/citrus aromas from the hops. Tasting this beer reveals a delicious wet smokiness, again--juniper berries and a nice bitterness to the finish. The hops deliver some citrus notes on the finish and some spicyness in the middle and are balanced out well by the malt that delivers a brown sugar-like sweetness. A very pleasing combination that is also refreshing. The smoke flavors permeate, but are not at all overbearing. Fantastic overall balance in this beer. Not as smokey as HaandBryggeriet's Norwegian Wood, but there are some additional flavors going on in this Hesjeøl that provide real character. Hesjøl means Harvest Ale, and this beer conjures up images of harvest time smells and flavors. Well done.

Mouthfeel is very pleasing. Nicely carbonated without being fizzy. Great paring with cheeses. Drinkability--I find this beer to be highly drinkable. It is a pleasure to pick out the flavors, savor the smokiness, and enjoy the refreshing taste of this hearty ale.

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Photo of jikvig
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark, brown golden in colour, and a very lively foam.

The nose gives some sitrus, honey, alittle apple and some really nice smoked malts component.

Really tasteful beer, a nice creamy foam, a suddle bitternes and it stays long in the mouth.

This is a really, really good beer, well-balanced and a long, rich finish!
Perfeckt for what it is made for; Drinking on a hot summerday after a hard days work!

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Photo of koopa
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Consumed on 4/11/10 at the Copper Mine Pub in North Arlington, NJ.

From Notes....

Appearance: Tawny - slight hazed russet autumn brown with yellow folds, a 1 finger white crown, little retention and soapy lace.

Smell: Apricot, nectarines, honey, spice (Cinnamon like but not quite)

Taste: Same as nose but with a slightly smokey malt. I'd score it a 4.2 for taste if I could. Nice twist with the smoked malt but I wish the base brew was better.

Mouthfeel: A touch too thin for me.

Drinkability: I'd score it higher if I liked the mouthfeel more.

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Photo of SilentSabre
3.51/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured up a dark reddish orange like slightly down tea. Sandy coloured finger and a half head stayed in place for several minutes.
I got more of a musty, yeasty smell and some sweet fruity aromas than anything else. Smoke was almost an afterthought. In fact, I don't think this is rauchbier at all.
Taste, while good, is absolutely nothing like a rauchbier, further cementing my suggestion that this is mis-lable on BA. Either way, flavour is huge on the spice with a strong malty presence, alot like a dunkelweizen. Strangely, at only 6,5%, the alcohol was very detectable. Still a good beer, just a bit more assertive than I was prepared for. Mouthfeel is silky and pleasantly carbonated.
I couldn't see drinking too much of this at one sitting, but it *is* tasty to just enjoy occasionally.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle - served up at a scandanavian tasting recently at brasserie V

appearance: hazy copper-amber body, patchy white lacing

smell: very smoky. A lot of smoked beers come off with smoked meat aromas, but not this one, pure char.

taste: same as aroma would indicate - fiery char, smoked wood, peppery spice, rye, sweet dried fruits. interesting beer - label proclaims "norwegian harvest beer" - i guess!

mouthfeel: spicy and dry

drinkability: good

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Photo of avalon07
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to an imperial pint glass. Had a dak amber color and a thick, hazy consistency. There was a huge amount of white, foamy, long-lasting head. OK lacing.

S: Didn't have a particularly overwhelming smell, but did have traces of hops, wheat, sugar, smoke, and herbs.

T: Tasted of hops, a bit of malt, sweets, a grassy quality, and an herbal component. Despite this being classified as a smoked beer, the smoke isn't as noticiable as it is with other beers of the style (Aecht for example). Still, a nice, easygoing flavor.

M: A very good amount of carbonation with a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: An interesting, drinkable beer. Very easy to drink.

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Photo of EPICAC
4.07/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a hazy, amber color, and is topped by a beige ring of a head. The aroma is fruity and malty with notes of banana, caramel, and toffee. There are also notes of grassy hops and smoke.

This beer opens up with sweet, malty notes of molasses and toffee over grassy undertones. Some spiciness appears in the center along with a dry smokiness that builds towards the finish. This beer is full-bodied, moderately carbonated, and had a grassy dryness in the finish.

I liked this beer quite a bit. Normally smoked beers are heavy handed with the smokiness, but the smoke in this one wasn't overpowering at all.

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Photo of jlindros
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap @ Armsby Abbey.

A: THick frothy head fades slowly over the super hazy dark brown and slightly marroon color.

N: Some nice malts, a decent amount of smoke but not heavy. Some light brown sugar and molasses, with a slight spice, and slightly toasty.

T: Starts right off the with smoke, but again is pretty light compared to many others. A slight smoked meat with that, chewy malts, malty overall with some brown sugar and molasses. Some light spicy hop character, a little sweet.

M: Medium but a little lighter than I expected but with good carbonation.

F: Small finish, especially for a smoked beer. A little sweetness but it dries well. Slight malt and molasses. More light smoke and some dry smokey malts as well as a slight spicy hop. It finishes short and then just disappears.

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Photo of nickfl
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Two fingers of light brown foam on top of a golden-brown body with light haze. The foam settles slowly and leaves light lace.

S - A light, smoky aroma with caramel and toasted malt. Some spicy character in the background cinnamon, clove, and a little bit of tannic oak.

T - Bready, toasted malt up front with light smoke. A little bit of acidity creeps up in the middle with more brown sugar notes. Finishes with a spicy character and increased smoke. Lingering brown malt and spice notes of allspice, clove, and smoke.

M - Medium body, moderately high carbonation, and a somewhat dry finish.

D - One never knows what to expect with these revivalist, traditional beers, and aside from smoke I really wasn't sure what I was getting into when I popped the cap off of this bottle. I expected something spicy, probably with some juniper; instead I get a lot of toasty, brown malt and muddy clove and allspice/cinnamon. It's kind of like a Belgian pumpkin ale. It isn't really an unpleasant combination, but there is something missing; it seems like it needs a bright note of hops, acidity, or a pungent spice like coriander to lift the heavy malt and smoke off the palate. As it is, it becomes a bit cloying toward the end of the glass and is not quite as drinkable as it might be. Nevertheless, it is an interesting, rustic beer and not quite like anything else that I have had before.

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Photo of glid02
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Leon's Full Service in Atlanta.

Pours a hazy copper color with a one-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of lightly smoked malts, sweeter caramel malts, and earthy hops, in that order. As it warms the hop aromas intensify a bit and a bit of spiciness jumps in as well.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Equal parts sweet caramel malt and mild smoked malt flavors kick things off. Very mild amounts of rye enter into things soon thereafter before fading to make way for good amounts of leafy and earthy hop flavors. The hops carry through to a solidly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also very good. I finished my glass without a problem and could easily have another.

Overall this was one of the more interesting beers I've had recently. It went down easy - no surprise as it had two specialty malts I like a bunch - however it didn't seem to really own any one of its many facets. Still, worth a shot.

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Photo of HeyItsChili
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Pours murky amber with globby white film on top. The head is really viscous and just sits there watching and judging.

S - Sweet brown sugar, sort of candy flavor, blood orange, lemon.

T - Really subtle smokey flavor. Oak, floral hops, spices, really a ton going on here I can't quite grasp the whole flavor profile, it's pretty complex.

M - Really smooth, medium bodied.

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Photo of NewGeneric
3.72/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Lucky enough to snag a bottle of this locally. Thanks Dan.
Poured into my Duvel tulip.
Also, listed here as 6.5%, but my bottle reads 7%.

A: Pours a deep orange, amber color with medium thick head that recedes somewhat slowly leaving thin wisps of sticky lacing scattered around the glass. Beer is mildly hazy, but not from sediment. There's a nice half finger of foam staying on top throughout.

S: This beer really shines here. Almost like a wit, really spiced up smelling of orange peel and coriander, most likely emanating from rye. Buried beneath all that, there are some hints of smoke and toastiness.

T: Tastes pretty smoky up front, with plenty of smoke on the finish as well. The rye and latent spiciness do come through, however, as hints of citrus peek in throughout.

M: A bit harsh up front, seemingly from bitterness? Not exactly sure what it is, but other than that, it's very smooth. Very nice carbonation and a very happy medium between dry and oily.

D: If it only it was a little less smoky. Plus I'm not a huge fan of rye to begin with. I can finish my bottle pretty easily, just not about to open another one. This is definitely a one-at-a-time beer for me.

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Photo of popery
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle, Batch 254, home. This beer pours a tawny shade of sienna with a small beige-ish head. The aroma is big mix of caramel malt, spicy rye, smoke, oak and floral hops. There's also what I now recognize as a wild yeast note from Haand's own strain. The flavor is medium sweet, smoke and more of that interesting yeast. This is another very good beer from an excellent brewery.

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Photo of gford217
4.23/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle picked up at Greens.

Pours a deep, clear amber, extremely lively, with bubbles feeding a three inch creamy white head that shows excellent retention. There is solid lacing on the way down.

The aroma is interesting, caramel sweetness with a lightly smoked character. There are some spices and herbs, maybe juniper, and sweet fruits and hops.

The taste has an earthy hop kick up front with some sweet berries and apricots on a more heavily smoked malt backbone than the aroma suggest. The finish has some sweetness and hops but it's the interesting hickory smoked flavor that lingers on the palate after each sip.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and moderately carbonated which seems to balance the smokiness very well.

I'm highly impressed with this one honestly. It's very drinkable and has just the right amount of smoke to allow all the other flavors come out. Really tasty.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked one of these up at West Lakeview. Served in my Stone pint glass. Batch 254, bottled November 29th, 2009

A - Pours a murky peach color with a few slow-moving bubbles. There's a half-finger of off-white foam that dissipates to a ring and some haze. A few fingers and spots of lace cling to the sides of the glass.

S - It's like a smoked pale ale. Nice floral and citrus hops, a caramel and multi-grain bread malt backbone, and some fruity esters. Oh yeah, and smoke.

T - The taste is a little more smokier than the nose. There's also some fruity and slightly spicy Belgian-style yeast, some citrus zest and floral hop character, bready malts, and a bitter orange aftertaste. The 6.5% ABV is not really perceptible.

M - Woah - too carbonated! Otherwise it's a solid and hearty medium body that's fairly viscous and chewy. Some nice residual hop oils and resins.

D - It was pretty easy to drink a half-liter on my own. The overly zesty carbonation was the only thing that slowed me down. This is about the right amount of smoke for me - it's a nice supplemental flavor, but something that can be easy to overdo. Probably won't get his again due to the price, but it was cool to try.

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Photo of GbVDave
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 16.9oz bottle into a DT tulip.

Batch 254
Total Bottles: 2160
Bottled: 29.11.09

A: Pours a hazy, sunset-orange color with about 1 1/2 fingers of creamy, light khaki colored head perched on top. The foam is fed by some very adequate carbonation and gradually falls down to a whispy skim and creamy ring. Some small ropes (threads?) of lace were left behind.

S: Big, smoky, smoked grain aroma right off the bat. There is some caramel and quite a bit of spicy, herbal, floral hops and a pinch of fruity yeast.

T: Quite smoky with nicely roasted malt/grain flavors. Everything about this suggests that this is the type of beer where all of the ingredients might be sourced from one village or even one farm. Very herbal and natural tasting. As it warms a noticably fruity yeast flavor emerges to compliment the smokiness.

M: Surprisingly full bodied with a fantastic spicy and peppery zing that spreads out all throughout the mouth.

D: Another winner from the Hand Brewery! This is, according to their label, a "Norwegian Harvest Ale". No such category exists but their description on the label also references the fact that this is "smoky". Be sure to drink the sediment in the bottom of the bottle!

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Hesjeøl from HaandBryggeriet
3.92 out of 5 based on 98 ratings.
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