Blitzen | Blue Mountain Brewery

very good
19 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Blue Mountain Brewery
Virginia, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by rapidsequence on 11-05-2012

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Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 87
Photo of josanguapo
3.03/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

From Cervezalandia. At JJ's house. Shared in wine glasses. Very foamy but doesnt feel overcarbonated but smooth and light. Not bad but dull and with a bit of acidity

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Photo of Riff
4.04/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color with an off-white head about a finger thick with large bubbles. Smells of cracker, cinnamon, and candied fruits. Tastes of cloves, cinnamon, a little cracker, raisins, and a little brown sugar flavor. Nice mouth feel, feels reminiscent of a stout. This is certainly an interesting beer and goes down quite nicely. Not something I'd drink all the time but it makes for a nice holiday beer.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.96/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From the slightly old bottle, it pours brown with a moderate tan head. The nose detects holiday spices and malt. The mouth is struck by the sweetness with the spice background. It lasts reasonably well.

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Photo of delta490
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep clear brown with a short lasting light tan head. A little head hangs on and leaves no lacing. The aroma is malty sweetness and spiced. The taste is close to that but there is an additional tang to it initially that fades as it opens up. The body is medium weight with just a little carbonation.

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Photo of Dirtyhands
3.82/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Review of 2012 Blitzen drank in 2016.

Flavors have meshed together very well, no sharp edges whatsoever. A two-dimensional caramel flavor that seems to flow equally with pomme fruit notes of cranberry and apple. Hints of spice and walnut make an appearance only to fade too soon.

Cork said best by MAY 2013, I'd have to agree with that assessment.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a brown body with one finger head and minimal lace. Caramel/toffee malt aroma strikes me at first, then some dark fruits and possible candi sugary aromas. Caramel/toffee sweetness is first thing to hit me in taste department, just like first to hit my nose in aroma department, in this medium bodied slightly chewy/bready body. Some dark fruits like, especially figs and black cherry, seem to come out at times with bits of yeast/candi sugar aspects but this is rather muted when compared to sweetness. A little off and sweeter than I would like but it's a good beer with a little bit of booze on finish.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.63/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 cork and cage into a snifter, the beer is a ruby-tinted, dark caramel coloring, but fairly translucent, with an uneven, foamy head that settles out to nothing very quickly. Aromas of rich candi sugar, heavily roasted caramel, cloves and cinnamon, and a subtle biscuit and bread backbone. Flavors are heavily roasted caramel forward, with an almost charred characteristic, and a solid backbone of apple, hints of cherry, and some date and pl notes. The body is oily, slick, and surprisingly light. Roasted and richly sweet aftertaste, with a blend of apple, cherry, and caramel. The finish is slick and light, with a heavily roasted linger. This one started off strong, but just came across a little light for me.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown color with light brown head. Aroma has some spicy yeast, dark sugar and some dark, tart fruits. Taste starts slightly tart and fruity, a bit of sugar but not really sweet and finishes dry and spicy. Body is highly effervescent, medium and quite dry on the aftertaste. Not bad but it isn't really my style of beer.

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Photo of tigg924
4.29/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours 1 inch head, clear, dark brown, with medium high carbonation. Very smooth for a medium heavy bodied beer. Love the mouthfeel. This feels like a bigger beer than it is. Taste is dark bread, Belgian spices, light baker's chocolate, brown sugar, and stone fruit..figs and raisins. Love the complexity. This is probably my favorite beer from a brewery that I have grown to like. I will pick this up again.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, 2013 vintage, poured into a goblet

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, extremely deep, dark, mahogany color, speckled with reddish highlights, and topped with two and a half fingers of white-colored head that slowly dissolved into a half of a finger lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Very aromatic with nice aromas of bready, toasted malt, as well as spices of clove, cinnamon, nutmeg and all-spice imparting notes of freshly baked gingerbread cookies. There are also notes of dried stone fruit, such as raisins, prunes, apricots, figs and currents, as well as aromas of candied sugar and a touch of dark chocolate.

Taste: Very nice. Lots of bready, toasted malt as well as spices of clove, cinnamon, nutmeg and all-spice up front, followed by the dried stone fruit, such as raisins, prunes, apricots, figs and currents, as well as flavors of candied sugar and a touch of dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and very, very smooth, as there is no carbonation what-so-ever. With an ABV of 7.0%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is a really nice beer. Unfortunately, this particular bottle is a little past its time, so I think that some of the spices and more bold flavors have faded, but it’s still a very tasty beer, with some complex, deep flavors. I need to try one next year in its prime.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before July 2014. Pours nearly crystal clear ruby red color with a 2 finger dense light khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings around the glass, with some moderate streaming carbonation. Aromas of big cherry, plum, raisin, pear, apple, caramel, molasses, candi sugar, toast, brown bread, clove, pepper, floral, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and fruity/spicy yeast notes; with good strength. Taste of cherry, plum, raisin, pear, apple, caramel, molasses, candi sugar, toast, brown bread, clove, pepper, floral, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of cherry, raisin, plum, pear, apple, caramel, molasses, candi sugar, toast, brown bread, clove, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of malt and fruity/spicy yeast ester flavors; with a great malt/yeast flavor balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a moderately slick and slightly syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a small warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent Belgian Dark ale! All around great balance and complexity of malt and fruity/spicy yeast flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Pencible
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: This poured a clear dark mahogany with moderate light tan head.
S: It smelled like waxy hops and grassy Belgian yeast, with some biscuit and light earthy caramel.
T: It tasted like earthy roasted barley and burnt sugar, with some waxy hops and grassy Belgian yeast. It had a somewhat clean bitter and earthy aftertaste.
M: It was watery with lots of natural carbonation. Bubbly body.
D: This wasn't as good as I hoped. No real Christmas spices, more like an average dubbel. The body didn't seem right for the style either, and the finish was a little rough, so it wasn't super easy to drink. Not a high quality brew.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.86/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Two days away from the drink before date. Just under the wire!

Nice profile on this one. A mix of sweet and spices. Consistent. Medium range of carbonation. Not too obnoxious on that end. Very easy drinker.

I like this one. Fits to style and is a nice production.

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Photo of Mattyb79
4.37/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I was quite impressed with this beer. Poured from a 750 ml cork and cage bottle dated best by May "13.

Appearance: Looks very good, pouring a clear copper color with about one finger of head. The head retention was short, but left some lacing on the glass.

Smell: I'm pretty impressed with the nose on this one. Sweet, candied sugars, molasses, and a spicy Belgian yeast are the first thing that hit the nose. Some winter warmer spices and fruity alcohol notes come at the end. Quite a complex and great smelling beer!

Taste: I am really impressed with the taste on this. First sip made me think it may be too sweet, but as it warmed and I drank more of the beer, the multitude of flavors come out. I don't
want to go overboard with flavors, but I taste a lot of sweet candy sugar, caramel, a little nutty flavor, and some wonderful malt blend that fades into a slightly spicy yeast and some alcohol dryness. Just a touch of bitter hops comes through at the very end.

Mouthfeel: If anything, the beer was a little too carbonated for what it is. The prickly sensation was nice for the first couple sips, but I found it detracting from the beer as I got through the bottle.

Overall: I would definitely consider this a great holiday beer and I may even drink it on occasion at other times. Not sure how well this would age, but I had it with 6 months on it and the bottle says it can be cellared, so I wish I had one more to see how it was when next years comes out, but for now, a great beer!

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Photo of oberon
3.81/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a chalice deep roasted chesnut brown with nice looking but quick to fade beige head atop.Alot of deep cherry and dried dark fruit in the nose,like a few others have noted I pick up a little lactic-like tartness,a little toffee and unsweetened chocolate round out the nose.Mildly sharp in the mouth at first but mellows after a few sips.Flavors of toffee and brown sugar that melds into alcohol dipped dark fruit and spiced phenols that seemed to linger in the finish.Not a bad beer but it's not great,I think maybe a fuller more mellow feel would help it out alot.

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Photo of DaveBlack
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Really a pretty beer. Deep mahogany with a small layer of light tan head than has a fairly short retention but keeps a thin layer near the center of the chalice.

S: Sweet malts, Belgian yeast, candied fruits, raisins, a sight spiciness, fruity esters. Big bold aroma, and a really great smelling beer. Complex.

T: Much, much more grainy and peppery than I had expected from the smell. Bitter malts, Belgian yeast, a LOT of woody hops on the finish make this beer finish extremely dry. This beer tastes bigger than 7%, that's for sure. The alcohol comes through the most on the finish. I was not a fan at the first sip, because it is not what the nose leads one to expect, but it is quite tasty.

M: Moderate body, creamy at first but giving way to an oiliness on the finish. Lots of small bubbled carbonation.

O: I was unsure at first, but the more sips I have of this beer the more I like it. It is big, bold, earthy and very drinkable. The bitterness is an unexpected element, but it works with the pepperiness. A beer worth checking out for sure.

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Photo of obywan59
4.27/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle with a picture of a drunken reindeer passed out in a snowbank with all four legs in the air.

Medium-dark brown in color with gorgeous ruby highlights when held up to a light. A 3 finger tan head leaving moderate and quickly dissipating lacing.

Fruity esters give rise to some dark fruit aromas with a hint of cherry or grape. Sweet at first, but then predominately tart with the bitterness of roasted malt. Spicy yeast rounds out the Christmasy effect.

Lightly peppery and drying, yet thick and creamy with lightly warming attributes as well.

Very pleasant interpretion on the style, though the ABV is on the light side. A lot of BSD's can be over the top to my taste. This is an easy drinker, and I definitely like that grapey taste/aroma that pops up on occasion. While being moderately thick, the low ABV and relative lightness, for a Belgian, make it borderline sessionable.

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Photo of AdamBear
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

cork says "best before May 2013'...i feel like a dark belgian strong ale style should have a longer shelf life.

A-dark brown with a nice tan head. maybe a reddish tint.

S-dark woody grains. maybe a hint of cherry?? dark belgian sugars. smells pretty awesome actually. maybe has a hint of tartness and cocoa? its a very complex scent.

T-comes in with a somewhat smokey flavor of grains and peppercorn. its not a very bold taste at all. not complex whatsoever. the after-taste is matching with a touch of bitterness to it. i don't think the bitterness is meant to be there, but i like works. there might be a subtle taste of cocoa in the end there. Overall, a let down from the smell.

M-good high carbonation with a dry finish. more or less exactly what i want from anything resembling a Belgian.

O-overall, its very subtle for being a slightly larger beer. the flavors are all quite mellow and fainted. it doesn't taste bad at all though, and it is quite enjoyable. this is something i would love if i could get it anywhere and for cheap, but due to the price i'll probably never buy this again.

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Photo of rapidsequence
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml corked and caged bottle purchased at Neds.

Appearance: Pours a dark, slightly hazy red color that tends toward brown. Tight, finely bubbled head with good retention. Decent curtains of lace with each sip, but its not sticky like the best Belgians.

Smell: Its a very spicy smelling Belgian yeast, not unlike the Unibroue strain. Some dark fruit and a slightly bready malty aroma. Not a lot of depth, but not bad.

Taste: The flavor, like the smell is dominated by the spicy Belgian yeast. There is a lot more going on with the flavor though, with more layers of dark fruit esters and bready malt. It actually drinks like a much stronger, bigger beer.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is appropriately high, but not too much. Gives it a nice soft, creamy feel throughout.

Overall: Overall its a solid offering, but the price points on these new barrel house beers are going to keep me away unless one really blows me away. Especially considering that this is no better than the annual Trader Joe/Unibroue beer that sells for 3.99.

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Blitzen from Blue Mountain Brewery
3.87 out of 5 based on 87 ratings.
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