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Baladin Nora | Birrificio Le Baladin

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Baladin NoraBaladin Nora
BA SCORE
4.01/5
Exceptional
342 Ratings
Baladin NoraBaladin Nora
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Birrificio Le Baladin
Italy
birreria.com

Style: Herbed / Spiced Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Egyptian inspired brew is spiced with ginger, myrrh, and orange peel ... very complex.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-01-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#4,058
Reviews:
148
Ratings:
342
pDev:
11.22%
Bros Score:
4.18
 
 
Wants:
79
Gots:
59
Trade:
1
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 342 |  Reviews: 148
Photo of Sappyjoker
4.46/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of ngandhi
4.44/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cardamom and clove nose and palette backed by light grain. Though barely hopped, everything is in wonderful balance here. Nora is smooth, light, yet sweet and viscous at times. Above all, this is exotic and unlike anything I've ever had. The Web site makes no claim to actually spicing this beer and if the cardamom is a product just of the grain and yeast then this is an absolutely stunning achievement for beer.

It drinks mostly like a wheat beer, but with a ton more character and a spicy zing you won't have ever encountered before.

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Photo of oberon
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have to say the bottle is what got my attention right away but the beer itself stole the show,pours a hazy orange/golden with a nice blooming head that leaves some decent lacing.Aroma is yeasty,spicey,citruisy just a mix of some really good stuff.Taste is almost a cross between a Belgain Pale and a German Hefe Weizen spicey and clovey with a yeasty sweetness to it with a great citruisy fruity taste that lingers and gives it a great aftertaste.Wow what a great brew and incredibly easy to drink for the alcohol content I wish I would have bought more,next trip to Premiere Gourmet in Buffalo and Iam grabbing three or four.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice presentation in a custom shaped and embossed 25.4 oz bottle with a nice label. It pours a slightly hazy golden-peach body topped by a full and frothy white head that holds quite well. The nose is perfumey, floral, mildly spicy (ginger) and lightly fruity (apricot) with a gentle touch of alcohol. Very clean. It's medium body combines with a fine carbonation to create a gently creamy mouthfeel. The flavor displays a strong floral character, gentle spice and light fruit over a softly sweet malt. It finishes dry with a light touch of malt and a delicate spiciness (ginger). A very clean and somewhat complex ale that's well done and quite enjoyable.

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Photo of hopstermonster1
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of GreenWBush
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I usually don't take into consideration the actual bottle and labeling in regards to the appearance score, but this time I have to. An absolute gorgeous keeper.

This one releases into my snifter with audible, whirring carbonation that continuously streams upward. Honey colored. Big head that fades to nil but leaves nice lace. The glass will be opaque with yeast flurry by the end of the bottle.

The nose is intense and vivacious with cinnamon, sour apple, lemons, and oranges. Tart. Quite Saison like in nature. Candi sugar, earthy yeast. Cider. Almost salty, hints of cracked pepper.

Dry as a bone, carbonation is like pop-rocks on the tongue.

Tropical fruit facade on the nose continues in the palate with a carbonation wall that obscures the malt flavors. I detect these only slightly, as a lingering oily sweetness.

Very similar to sparkling wine. What a centerpiece of beer conversation and tool to convert the unitiated. Only bad part of the flavor package is a slightly chemically after burp. Cider.

Wife likes this more than any saison she's tried. That's a major complement in my book. Substantial and smooth, but not too thick as to be refreshing. A winner!

I can't say thanks enough to Tom at the Blind Pig in Champaign, IL for the opportunity to try this.

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Photo of theformula
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer #28 in my 366 Days of Beer Quest, tasted on 1/28.
Thanks to the g/f who probably paid way too much for this great looking bottle of Nora @ Firewaters in Atlantic City, NJ.

A: Pours a rusty orange body into a Duvel glass. A large, egg white head holds up really well. Loads of microscopic sediment floats throughout the body, & carbonation is effervescent.

S: This is different than anything I've come across, w/ the exception of Midas Touch by DFH. The overall picture is strongly perfumed (w/ myrrh apparently) & a prominent sandalwood note as well as wood, orange or rose water, clover honey, pineapple and subtle, leafy hops. Unique and really nice.

M: Light-med. body, low-med. carbonation. The body is light, a little slick & very quaffable.

T: The perfumy character doesn't translate strongly into taste, but it's a light, balancing flavor. Sweet malts w/ great spices mentioned above, w/ some soft hops and grain in the finish.

D: A unique, well-made spice beer, find this if you can. It really does remind me of DFH's Midas Touch, and I'd love to attain another bottle for a comparison. A bit thin, but incredibly drinkable.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color of the beer is dark golden moving toward orange capped off by a nice fluffy head that dissipated quickly. The aroma is spicy and sweet with some earthy herbs. The beer is light on the palate with a bit of carbonation. The flavor is complex: sweet fruit in particular oranges, spiciness, dry with some residual bitterness and acidity. The finish is long and dry. This beer is complex and very unique and I like it for that. I could finish off the 750 mL bottle in no time.

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Photo of alpinebryant
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a slightly hazy pale malt color with a visible head leaving some lacing.

S: Aromas of spices, floral ginger and honey scents mixed with some very faint citrus.

T: Tastes nicely blended and dry. Not overly sweetened or bittered. Mild and well put together. Very belgian in style, but with herbs not typical of a belgian that might usually just work with a nice strong yeast presence. Delightfully refreshing and a nice sipper here. Compared to some other spiced beers, this one is very well done in my opinion and not over done in the category where I might otherwise be tired of having this after one beer. This I have had the lucky occasion to come upon a few bottles of to enjoy thanks to a family member.

M: Medium to thick body and a light level of carbonation.

O: Very well done altogether. I think this easily overcomes others in the category. From the examples I have seen in category styles I cannot think of a more well put together beer. Easily drinkable and enjoyable by many

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Photo of Commandophile
4.41/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of elNopalero
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Brought this back from a trip to Rome. I like the design of their bottles and even the fonts in their labels. Waxed bottle, cork held in place without the aid of a cap or cage. That’s a first for me.

Poured this into my Baladin teku. Seemed appropriate enough!

This has a pleasing pumpkin-amber orange tinged glow to it with tight bubbling on the foam. I could wax poetic but the point is it looks fantastic.

I’m struggling to place the aroma. It’s akin to a Belgian-style triple, with a light, floral, fruity ester characteristic. There’s a slight must to it, reminding me of white grapes, with just the faintest whisper of lavender and orange blossom on the margins. Wow. Fantastic, layered and complex.
Each sip lit an explosion of flavor on my palate. I get the same floral-fruity complexity, with a great combination of orange blossom, clover honey, and a touch of ginger spice. There’s an almost-champagne effervescence to it, keeping it light and delicate.

Opens with amber honey, orange sweetness, floral essence, light, delicate and inviting.

Yes, it’s that good!

I am glad I saved this for a special occasion as it deserved my full attention. This review is a little bittersweet, as this is the last of the brews I brought back from my Italy trip. Alas, now all I have left are my memories.

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Photo of jcalabre
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is truly a unique beer. Either you are going to *really* like it; or you'll dump it, in my opinion.
Appearnce: Nora pours a hazy golden with a large white head. The head quickly dissapates.
Nose. The aroma is quite interesting. It's a sweet/dry/herbal/floral smell. It almost reminds me of Campari. I can't quite place it, but I like it.
Flavor: It's highly carbonated, complex, and well balanced. The use of hops for bitterness is replaced by herbs and this makes a nice change.
Highly Recommended.
Penso che questa birra abbia un sapore magnifico!

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: A fantastically super sexy dark green glass bottle, which looks like a Bowling Skittle. Embossed on the upper portion with an angled straight sided pint glass and the words ‘Birra Baladin’. The small front label located at the base simply says ‘Nora Ale, Product of Italy, 6.8% Alc.Vol.’ and looks like a pastel colored stained glass window at times. An even smaller reverse label has lots of crappy information written on it for the idiots amongst us. It also has a small typed code of ‘103’ at the base, does this mean Bottled October 03? Maybe!? This is all finished with a crown cap covered in a thick copper colored plastic which has the words ‘Birra Baladin CAN 117/T’ embossed on the top.

Appearance: Hmmmm, what type of Glass??? Well I settled for a tall thin curved sided Ourdaller 0,3 ltr Glass flute from Luxembourg. It suited this one well, as the carbonation was high. The body has a very golden glow – iridescent in nature, nuclear in its shining capacity when backlit. A massive white head quickly forms a pillowy smooth transient affair that is at least 2” deep. The head fizzes and it settles. Lots of streamers, but little inherent carbonation. The sun drenched golden toasted body looks fantastic.

Nose: Fruity nose, a mix of light sugared orange and lemon fruit slices entwined with light ginger snap crackers and a smattering of spicy black pepper set amidst a light toasted malt body.

Taste: Beautiful smooth entrance that is spiky at times thanks to the high carbonation levels. Soft feel mixed with an orange tinged ginger ending that ruins any semblance of normality - thank goodness! Floral at times, fruity at others, overall this is always a rather complex tasting beer and is immensely fascinating. A gorgeously fruity Ale.

Mouthfeel: Like the bottle, it has a thick base feel with a light top end. A well-balanced beer with immense posture. An incredible fruity ale that has bold orange zest and ginger character with herbal spicy qualities. Black pepper sprinkles the mouth amidst the orange peel finish.

Drinkability: It’s expensive, but it is the sort of beer that I would not mind paying to drink all night once in a while. The fruity spicy feel is quite stupendous.

Overall: Superb! Italian beer gets such a bad name, but sup this beauty and you will forever be transformed – these dudes know what they are doing for sure. Worth the money – you bet it is!!!

This Review is dedicated to fellow BA MrJimCat, for he is the one that put me onto this beauty during the BA NYC Rally in November 2003.

Highly Recommended and well worth the coin. Took me a while to find it, but it was well worth the wait. Cheers SirJim!!

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Photo of merlin48
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1 pint 9.4 oz bottle is really interesting to behold. Served into a tulip, it pours a slightly hazed, orange/golden body with a large, three finger tall, creamy white head. Head sticks around for several minutes and deposits a moderate amount of patch lace on the glass.
Aroma: This is where the fruity and floral adventure begins. Honeydew melon, white grapes, apple cider, fresh orange pulp, peaches, and notes of tart lemon, are all noted in the aroma at some point in the sipping experience. Lots of floral notes are just as elusive, with fresh blooming lilacs and rose water notes jumping in and out of the bouquet. There is a definite spice profile, as well, but it's restrained and exotic, impossible to pinpoint but quite intriguing.
Mouthfeel: Dry and soft, medium bodied, with some effervescent carbonation. Very nice.
Taste: Fruity and floral, as the aroma suggests, but more complex. Peaches, lemons, strawberries, and honeydew melon are complimented by an intricate floral component of wild rose and lilac. An earthy yeast presence and the subdued exotic spicing keeps the florals and fruits in fine balance. Some herbal and floral hops bitterness helps, as well. This retains a dryness throughout, that compliments the fruity sweetness very well. Reminds me a bit of Fantome Saison blended with a Belgian pale ale. Very tasty.
Drinkability: I really like this one. Definitely, it's different than anything I've ever tried, but overall it has some characteristics of a fine Saison tucked inside the myriad of exotic spices, florals, and fruits. A bit expensive, but worth the effort to seek out. I would never have guessed this was brewed in Italy, if I were tasting it blind. No hint of the alcohol content is able to poke through all the complexity here.

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Photo of clvand0
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to merlin48 for bringing this one our way. This one pours a cloudy yellow color with a small head that falls off fast and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma is just wild. Tons and tons of flowery aroma, with a lemony kick. The flavor is just as odd. Tastes like chewing on flowers, mixed with a little bit of pepper. Just wild. The mouthfeel is slightly thicker than expected, but very nice and very drinkable. What a strange and tasty brew.

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Photo of p4nch1to
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of paullmcm25
4.34/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of tetu
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy tinted golden color with all kinds of stuff floating around in there. Aroma is spicy and yeasty at first but the more I smell the more I get a sweet citrus fruit (tangerine). Spicy with ginger taste. It is hard to describe it perfectly. It has some sourness to it which I wasn't expecting, but it is balanced with sweet citrus. Strange aftertaste, kinda metalic, maybe the myrrh? Medium body with the perfect amount of carbonation imo. Very clean tasting. Very good drink. Easily the best beer I've had from Italy.

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Photo of jreitman
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Highly carbonated and almost champagne like. Hazy gold with a persistent white head. Only slightly bitter. Spiciness in the nose and in the mouth with some sweet and fruit flavors. As it warms the sweetness comes out a bit more.

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Photo of I3eer
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of wspscott
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle in Duvel tulip
date looks to be 02/10 in my fridge since last December from wife's xmas present (2010).

A: Pours with a thin white head, crystal clear, dark gold color.
S: Very fruity with a little bit of malt sweetness.
T: Lots of fruits (pears and apples), sweet but dry at the same time, no hint of hops. The bottle says 6.8% alcohol which seems surprising, this could be a 4% beer without any problem. I don't get any hint of spices, the flavors seem to be mostly yeast driven with a little bit of malt character. I would guess that this is pils malt a small bit of hops for bittering and a very interesting yeast, plus some spices .
M: Lots of carbonation and a slightly creamy feel makes this a very easy beer to drink.
O: A very interesting beer, very different from anything I have had before, it is very easy to drink, but has a lot going on. I probably would not buy this often because of the price, but I wish I could afford to have this all the time. Highly recommended.

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Photo of RedBrewer83
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip...

A: Pours a nice pale orange hue with a three finger head of frothy off white foam. Body is slightly opaque. Head falls off fairly quickly.

S: I wouldn't guess its italian! Smells belgian all the way, nice malt upfront blended with sweet honey and anise along with some citrus.

T: Follows the nose, a little earthy and dank but it pairs well with the bright citrus and honey notes and the anise comes through quite pronounced. Very complex and yet balanced, very impressive.

M: Rich and hearty medium body, nice smooth carbonation, a bit heavy for the style but overall very nice.

D: Very drinkable, only knock is a slight booziness for the 6.8%, needs to be a little more balanced, but very nice beer overall!

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Shared with @LaitueGonflable and @tobeerornottobe.

Pours a lovely bright yellow colour, but hazed with some disturbed yeast sediment. Head is fine and bubbly, and the whole thing has a very refined, champagne-like look to it. Very fine carbonation, and a lovely depth to the body, that sits with the light colour, again giving it that sophisticated character. Nice.

Nose is bright and peppery, with spicy fresh characters and a sharpness like cedar barrels. It's clean and fresh and very, very excitingly fragrant. It doesn't have a huge amount of complexity, but it's really hard not to like it for what it is.

Taste is a lot more subdued, but here it comes back to the crisp dryness and the sophistication that it looks like. Very little of that cedar character, but here the citrus peel comes through really pleasantly, and it zings off the crispness on the back palate. Very smooth and clean.

Exceptionally fresh and drinkable, and very, very refined. It reminds me in some ways of a Bière de Champagne. Certainly the dry finish and sophistication give it this character. The spices are so beautifully done. They complement the style and the flavour of the beer, and never seem like a gimmick. In fact, this beer almost makes you feel like this *is* how beer should be made.

 1,283 characters

Photo of sleazo
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a red wine glass at Spuyten Duyvil

A-hazy beautiful orange. Lovely head.

S-there is that "horseblanket" aroma I love. Very nice odor without being too strong.

T- more funk with some lemon hits the tongue first. Also some cloves and a vague spicyness. Almost no hop character. Very much tart but a slight sweetness comes through as it warms.

M-refreshingly bubbly but not overwhelming. A nice medium body

D-very nice outdoorsy beer and very good with some brie goat cheese and brasaola. This is a very unique beer and one I will get again despite the high price.

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Photo of brystmar
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a hazy golden orange; plenty of white head, average retention and lace. A plethora of sediment breaks up the effervescent body, making it difficult to distinguish the yeast from the bubbles.

S: spicy, malty, earthy, and yeasty with some citrus too.

T: similar to the nose at first with ample amounts of spice and fruit taking shots at my taste buds. Cloves and citrus give it an interesting twist. Even a touch sour! It's interesting how the different parts of this beer all pull it towards different styles: hefeweizen/wit, Belgian pale ale, saison.

M: medium-bodied; fizzy carbonation perfectly compliments this brew's flavor profile.

D: some may claim the somewhat-low ABV (6.8%) makes it easy to drink, but I beg to differ. One sip of this beer lets you know it was exceptionally well-crafted -- on par with the many Dogfish brews -- and the guys at this elite level of brewing simply know how to make beer easy to drink, regardless of style or gravity.

This is a prime example of excellence in beer, ladies and gents. Cheers!

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Baladin Nora from Birrificio Le Baladin
Beer rating: 4.01 out of 5 with 342 ratings
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