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Kuhnhenn Mayhem | Kuhnhenn Brewing Company

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Kuhnhenn MayhemKuhnhenn Mayhem

Brewed by:
Kuhnhenn Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by corby112 on 11-25-2009

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Reviews: 63 | Ratings: 91
Photo of MbpBugeye
3.73/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Picked up in Ann Arbor during the weekend of the summer brewers guild fest. April 2009 on the label. Opened with barely a hiss and poured flat.

A- As I said, it poured nearly flat, no head at all. The only thing that tells me there is at least some carbonation left is the few spots of tiny wisps. The beer is a totally muddy purple brown. Its pretty strange looking, similar to water from a mud puddle. Reminds me of the stuff we had to trudge through at the brewers guild fest.

S- Lots of cherry and other fruits like figs. Some chocolate, grape and fusel alcohol. Not bad.

T- Very sweet. This beer is huge on black cherry, fig, prune and other dark fruitness. There is that touch of chocolate that comes around on the end.

M- Nearly flat, some carbonation remains but its barely noticeable. Smooth body and very sweet.

D- I finished this bottle, it being flat didnt totally ruin it for me. Luckily this is a beer that can kinda work with out carbonation.

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Photo of gford217
3.88/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from hoppymeal.

Pours a deep, clear amber, almost copper with a small off-white head that recedes to a small collar with some spotty lacing.

The aroma is sweet and fairly one-dimensional with the candi sugar dominating from the outset. Caramel malts and hints of dark fruit and spices.

The taste is a bit more complex but still has the big candi sugar backbone. Lots of big juicy dark fruits with raisins and figs before the finish delivers a sweet but boozy punch.

The mouthfeel is medium to full and very sticky with candi sugar dominance throughout.

Boozy but still fairly drinkable, this is a really sweet Belgian dark. It's all about the candi sugar and dark fruits on this one.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.41/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from The Belgian Room in NYC. Served in a tulip.

Mayhem displays a dark russet-chocolate body with cola colors at the edges. No visible head or carbonation, even with a good swirl of the glass. Aroma makes up for what the appearance lacks by providing a phenomenal bouquet: browned apple flesh, toffee, plum, and a light licorice note. Almost smells a bit oxidized, with a sherry-like note in the background. However, the alcohol (10.5% as reported by the bartender) is well hidden.

No detectable booze heat in the flavor either, which allows a plethora of spice and dark caramelized sweetness from the malt to shine through. Prune and fig from the yeastiness with a hint of chocolate and earthy hops. Mouthfeel is thick and chewy, with just enough carbonation to keep the body from becoming overly viscous on the tongue. Yet again, Kuhnhenn manages to craft a delicious beer that pushes the ABV envelope. Mayhem is a certified 'malt-bomb', and I loved every second of it. Still scratching my head as to how this one has gotten such a mediocre reception thus far...

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with small foamy head with some retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of candi sugar and dry fruits is enjoyable and more balanced then I was expecting. Taste is also a more complex affair then expected with a nice strong malt backbone with light residual candi sugar with notes of fry fruits and fruity ester. Nice touch of caramel malt and light toffee. Body is about average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well done though a fuller body would have been a great addition.

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Photo of bamadog
4.44/5  rDev +28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Just returned from a beer tour of Michigan and Kuhnhenns was our first stop. I've been dying to get to drink more of their beers as I've only sampled one up to this point, so this was well worth the wait! Review is from notes taken on 6/18/2010 and poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Pour is a coppery and amber/ruby color and starts with a 1/2 finger creamy tan head that fades quickly to a thin skim on the surface; body has great clarity and shows no real carbonation; loose oily spots of lacing are left behind.

Smell: Strong presence of very ripe and dark fruits - reminiscent of figs and dates; nice Belgian spices, especially coriander; definite presence of alcohol in the nose with that big ABV. I love the fruitiness and how spicy sweet it is, and it's very robust -- can't wait to get this on the palate.

Taste: Wow - big alcohol right up front as would be expected from this brewery, but once you get past that there's a huge presence of the sweet and ripe to over-ripe dark fruitiness (figs and dates, almost a little raisin aspect too); a nice sweet caramel maltiness with the warm Belgian spices and even a bit of a light chocolaty presence in the end as it warms. Very nice overall!

Mouthfeel: Very warm and vaporous alcohol leaves the mouth tingly; a moderate level of stickiness that's moist is left on the roof of the mouth; body is of medium weight and the carbonation is non-existent so the body is very smooth (it really pulls off not having any carbonation though as the big ABV gives the body some life due to the heat).

Drinkability: Moderate at best because of the super high ABV, but it's really an amazing sipper and would be great in the winter. I'd love to get some bottles of this to age and see if it mellows out at all, but even as is, it's pretty freaking amazing. Something tells me that I may have just set the highest review for this beer.

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Photo of antoines15
1.45/5  rDev -58.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

My first Kuhnhenn beer and overall, very disappointed. Pours dark brown with no head and no lacing. Smells like a barleywine. Raisins, burnt, and boozy as hell. Taste is similar to the smell, just not good at all. It tastes like drinking a shot of cheap booze. I don't know if I've ever drain poured a beer, so we'll say that this was my first. I'm not even going to bother with the rest. I can't imagine anyone enjoying this beer. Glad I only had one bottle, and it was free. Blah! (thumbs down)

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Photo of brentk56
2.94/5  rDev -15%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a coffee brown color with a bare ringlet of a head; no lacing

Smell: Burnt caramel, brown sugar, licorice and dates; everything smells a bit burnt, however

Taste: Burnt caramel, up front, with a developing boozy and dark fruit flavor, with burnt sugar undertones; after the swallow, the flavor turns in a molasses sweet direction, the date flavors lingering underneath

Mouthfeel: Thick body but virtually no carbonation

Drinkability: A really disappointing beer from a brewery that I cherish; this should never have been released

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Photo of Sammy
3.6/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mondiale 2010 sample from fresh bottle. Generous head. Pleasant aromas,light brown with one-quarter inch head, and above average mouthfeel. Some citrus flavours, brown sugar and candi, licorice,yeast.Understated carbonation. Pleasant enough. Sweet biased.

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Photo of Gmann
3.02/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy chocolate brown color with little to no head; slightest of rings around the glass. Label looks like it is made out of tissue paper (this did not factor into the grade). The aroma is big on boozy raisins and prunes. The aroma pretty much stops at that, not much else. The taste is of prunes, clove, pepper, candied cherries and dirt. The flavor doesn't have much life, stale, flat, bleh. The feel is pretty terrible; flat, lifeless, sweet with some metallic bitterness. The brew does have some of the BSDA flavors but there is no life or soul to the beer. It is sweet from the dark fruit which is nice but no carbonation just kills this beer.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

My first beer from Kuhnhenn. The beer pours a dark brown color with a khaki head. The aroma is brown sugar, cherry, oak and alcohol. The flavor is sweet brown sugar, dark fruit, alcohol, vanilla, butterscotch, chocolate, caramel and toffee malts. The alcohol is very present, making this beer very boozy. Low carbonation and medium mouthfeel.

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Photo of capra12
3.31/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an East End pint glass.

Appearance: pours a zero head, dark cloudy and brown.

Smell: fermented and sweet dark and green raisins with a boozie aroma.

Taste: opens with a intense dark raisin profile with a belgian yeast profile in the background. There is a bready profile that lingers into the finish as a boozie heat finishes leaving an overly malty and boozie aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: minimal carbonation, warming with a medium body. The malt and dark fruit profile is over powering and drowns out the delicate yeast and classic BSDA balance.

Drinkability: I wouldn't have this again and recommend this to those who enjoy an over the top BSDA with a warming finish and intense dark fruit presence and malt profile.

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Photo of tmoneyba
4.2/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by alexsdad06. Poured reddish/brown color with an minimal light brown fizzy head that diminished with little lacing. Complex dark fruit, toasted malt, yeast and alcohol aroma. Medium to full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation. Medium to heavy complex dark sweet flavor with medium to heavy sweet finish and a small bite of alcohol. Good standout brew.

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Photo of bierenutz
3/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Poured into a glass, even aggressively, yielded absolutely no head with this brown colored brew. Looks like flat rootbeer.
S-Carmels, dark fruits and maple.
T-Sweet carmel, smokiness and figs with some alcohol notes.
M-No carbonation and a thin feel in the mouth. Some bite of the alcohol. There is also dryness without alot of memorable qualities.
D-This is at best an average beer. It tries to go in certain directions but falls short in every way. Somewhat disappointing given the other great brews Kuhnhenn puts out.

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Photo of zdk9
3.74/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Dark brown- not a faintness of head and therefore no lacing- looks like a rootbeer.

S- Complex, a lot of different flavors: sweet maple, sweet berries, caramel apples, brown sugar.

T- Also quite complex as in the nose. Some sweet citrus- orange and lime. Less sugary than the smell.

M- Basically no carbonation wich really distracts my tastebuds. Slight burn on the tongue (I'm curious as to how much alcohol this has).

D- Super complex but the lack of carbonation is really detracting from the beer.

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Photo of BierFan
3.02/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a cervoise. Has a date on the label of April 2009, making this bottle 1 year old at the time of review.

Appearance: Hazy dark red body. Absolutely no carbonation. Possibly caused by a leaky cap, I don't know. Spots of lacing despite no head.

Smell: Rich and boozy. Very sweet and sugary with raisins, and figs.

Taste: Alcohol isn't as abrasive as I feared it might be. Does have a nice bite from the alcohol, though. If I had to compare this to another beer I would say it is like Avery's "The Beast" due to the alcohol and dark fruit super sweetness.

Mouthfeel: No carbonation really hurts this beer when it comes to mouthfeel and overall enjoyment.

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Photo of tpd975
3.82/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice nutty brown. Zip zero for a head.

S: A bit boozy, gooey raisins and figs for sure. Lots of malty sweetness, caramel, and burnt brown sugar.

T: Rich, sweet, and boozy. Tons of rich over ripe dark fruit. Sweet candy malts, molasses, and stinging alcohol.

M: Flat, sweet, bold, and boozy.

D: Not real drinkable, but not bad either.

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Photo of jt31914
1.35/5  rDev -61%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

12 oz. Bottle:

A: Dark brown with no carbonation. None. Nada. Ben Stein is bubblier than this brew. No lacing, just dark brown liquid.

S: Burnt caramel and some weird fruit aromas. I'm not so sure about this brew, it's like they were wanted it to smell like Westy 12 but then put in all the wrong proportions of every ingrediant.

T: OH MY GOD! The initial taste on the palate is horrible! The finish is pretty nice with fruit and caramel flavors, but I can't even hold the beer in my mouth long enough to describe the first taste that hits you.

M/D: Just unbearable... Drainpour after only half a glass!

This was pretty epicly bad, which is unforturtunate cause I like Kuhnhenn and I love Belgian Strong Dark Ales; however, I would rather drink goblin's blood or read all of the Twilight books than ever drink this again.

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Photo of TCgoalie
2.85/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 1 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a reddish brown, hazy, rather unpleasant color. There is no head at all even while trying to obtain it with a vigorous pour. I don't see any carbonation either leading me to believe this beer is off.

I get a lot of red licorice in the smell. Not Twizzlers, but the Red Vines licorice. There is also a dark fruit scent with a lot of heavy malt.

Quite the taste explosion in this one. The dominant flavors are anise, cherries, and plums all combining to make a very thick intense drink. There is a decent amount of alcohol warming at the end. Hidden in the middle is a dose of caramel malt that doesn't really match the beer and contributes to a poor balance.

The mouthfeel is extremely full and syrupy. Not the thickest I've had, but it's up there.

This is not a drinkable beer and I'm not entirely excited about finishing it. Two of these is out of the question.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.14/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-pours a hazy, murky reddish brown liquid. An aggressive pour produces very little head that is tan in color and thin.

S-the nose is fairly big and sweet. Tons of raisins lightly soaked in rum. Sweet plums and figs with a touch of chocolate in the very back

T-the flavor is huge and slightly overpowering. Very boozy in taste, rums soaked raisins seem to dominate heavily on the rum. Notes of plums with a touch of cherry. Chocolate in the back with faint notes of floral hops and a touch of bitterness. Lots of warming and booziness in the finish

M-this is full bodied, chewy, smooth and creamy. Low in carbonation, it seems to fall off in the back. Somewhat syrupy throughout and it coats the mouth.

D-this is quite boozy but has some nice flavors around the alcohol. The creaminess and body are nice but it seems to lack carbonation.

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Photo of billshmeinke
2.77/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured hard into my Duvel tulip. Extra from triptens.

Bottle says it is from April 2009. No abv, but I would assume about 8-10%.

Yields no head. A couple of bubbles around the edge of the glass. Dark brown. No lacing.

Smells of sweet dark fruits. Plumbs, raisins and figs. Some brown sugar. A whiff of alcohol. Very sweet smelling.

Taste follows smell. Tastes of sweet candied plumbs, raisins and figs. Brown sugar. A bit of rum like booze. Earthy, leafy hops in there as well. Too sweet. Slightly cloying.

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation. A tiny bit hot.

I wish this were only 6 oz. A good example of an american brewer trying to do a Belgium style and completely blowing it. Reminds me of their Old Ale, but bad.

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Photo of Billolick
3.59/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle. Label says "April 2009." Dark mahogony and murky pour, no carbonation, no head, no lace...Hmmm not off to a good start here. Alcohol, brandy and dark berries in the nose. Strong alcohol up front, more jammy berries, brandy, vanilla, sweet toffee, a lot going on. Its better as it warms, but not going to make too many top 10 lists. Carbonation would help, more balance would help and perhaps some more time in the bottle to cool things down would help. This one needs some help.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.59/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Picked this up at De Cicco's in Ardsley, NY and drank at the compound into some regular kitchen glasses, my first from this brewery, excited to say the least. There's about a year on this bottle.

A small mouse whimper when the cap was pryed, Mayhem has a bold dark mahagony red with plum juice added. A semi hard pour yielded no head at all not even a cap just some loose dying bubbles, no lace.

Mayhem smells straight up like a 10 year old bottle of JW Lees harvest ale. It may have some Thomas Hardy in there but I'm thinking JW. Needless to say, it does not resemble a BSDA at all, more of a old ale with booze. Getting alot of booze, light bread from the yeast, plum, berries, booze soaked grape, you get the picture.

Mayhem does not reach an old ale in taste, more of a mix of that and a BSDA. Red grapes and plums with apple skins and a caramel backing that's candi like with some toffee hints. A bit of cherry and even less chocolate In the middle some burnt sugars and in the end a booze blast, This is a little bit hot but not burning, noticable.

Well, this is well above medium bodied, it's quite bulky and strong, although it's flat as hell, no carbonation what so ever, making me think old ale even more, as i've found this in some aged versions of the style. Either way mayhem is dead to the world. A bit of heat in the mouth after a few ounces or so, coating yet not syrupy.

I'm glad this comes in 12oz bottles, and i'm glad I shared those 12oz's with a friend. Not sure where they were going with this one, but it's a bit big for a Belgian Strong Dark. It's not bad by any means, it's just not all that drinkable. Laying one down may work out that heat, but what's the point of cellaring a knowingly flat beer.

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Photo of pwoods
3.02/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12oz. brown bottle, purchased at one of the many bottle shops in Ann Arbor, poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a very dark brown, no light coming through. Basically no head from a very rough pour. No lacing.

S: Lots of booze. Some Belgian dark candi sugar and dark fruits. A good bit of sweetness.

T/M: Very boozy. More of the Belgian dark candi sugar and dark fruits. Pretty damn sweet. Body is only about medium or medium light with pretty much no carbonation... making it feel watered down.

D: This has got to have a lot of alcohol and the mouthfeel sucks.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to BeerWorld for sending this my way as an extra. Bottle dated April 2009.

A: A dark mahogany with a tiny bit of crimson coming through. Not too much of a head or lacing.

S: Loads of dark fruit, cherries, bits of chocolate, and sweet malt. Almost reminds me of a barrel-aged imperial stout. There's not much in the way of Belgian yeast.

T: Very sweet caramel malt along with chocolate, dark fruits, bits of cherry, and a slight woodiness. Very complex and very nicely blended.

M: A little bit on the light side, but a bit creamy and very smooth with no alcohol presence.

D: Very complex, keeping me always wanting more. Can't believe how low the average score is on this one, as I am really, really enjoying. Thanks again, Alex.

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Photo of vacax
4.05/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber with a small of of bubbles appearing in my glass. Aromas of raisin, candi sugar, plums, wine grapes, and booze. Tastes of grapes, sweet red wine, and candi sugar. Fairly simple but elegant flavors. Quite an enjoyable flavor here. Moderately full body with a lighter to medium carbonation that avoids being too bubbly and lets the subtle flavors shine. Good beer here, wasn't expecting anything and quite a nice surprise.

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Kuhnhenn Mayhem from Kuhnhenn Brewing Company
3.46 out of 5 based on 91 ratings.
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