New Holland Phi 2005 | New Holland Brewing Company

New Holland Phi 2005New Holland Phi 2005
26 Ratings
New Holland Phi 2005New Holland Phi 2005

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Euro Strong Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-25-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 26 |  Reviews: 25
Reviews by kinger:
Photo of kinger
3.83/5  rDev +31.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Based on some quick research I believe this Phi is a 2005 edition, the abv listed on the bottle is 9%. This one appears to be a strong ale. Pours a nice medium orange/burnt yellow with a medium white head and tons of lacing followed by strong carbonation. Aroma is sour and fruity. Very sweet to the taste buds at first which soon becomes sour and acidic. Tangy and fruity as well this ale is very interesting. The alcohol is well hidden. Rich on the palate with a sour finish that is dry. Perplexing and rather tasty.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of warriorsoul
2.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Flat, golden honey in color with less than a skimming of white head with your basic pour...lacing non-existant.
Sour apples up front with some vineous hint of alcohol and quite sweet smelling.
Taste is unique to say the least...not so sure what they were shooting for here. Sour up front with less sweetness than expected (a good thing). More of that apple flavor and some spent grain taste that didn't help things. Once the fruity flavor dies off (and it does quickly), the flavor is quite real depth to most lagers I enjoy.
Mouthfeel is thin and the carbonation is high...not the combo for a highly drinkable brew. I can stomach a pint, but not something I'd go for again least the alcohol is well hidden. Real surprised to see this one pushing 9%.
Again, not sure what to think of this one...not a bad beer, but not for me.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.03/5  rDev +38.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful pour of cloudy orange yellow with a half finger white head of large bubbles melting to a semi-sticky ring.
Aromas are almost belgium in their sweet pale malts and sweet fruits. Very sweet sugary finish to the aroma. Almost like a quad.
Mouth is no where near as sweet as the aromas. Light, light pale malts with a sour light fruit (tangerine, orange??) coming on strong as you swallow then a light alcohol taste that moves to alcohol warmth.
Aftertaste becomes sour but clean, drying and refreshing.
More like a Guaze than a Euro Strong Lager.
This is a very peculiar beer. I couldn't / wouldn't class it as a Euro Strong Lager...but then again...what is it?
Don't know...but I like it.
Very clean and refreshing while being very intoxicating.
Sort of amazing.
Thanks jpm30 for this unique opportunity at a unique brew.

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Photo of Calico
4.17/5  rDev +43.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This appears to be New Holland's answer to Duvel. It's a Belgian Golden Ale clone and it's pretty darned good - an extremely drinkable beer with a high gravity that sneaks up on you. I don't know why people call it a Euro strong lager. I caught clove, spicy and "earthy" notes typical of a Belgian farmhouse beers or French Saisons. The cloudiness isn't necessarily appropriate for the style, but the color and flavor are spot on. I recommend it to Belgian beer lovers on a budget or any "beer kamikaze" willing to try something new.

Edited to add: This review was written by my husband, who so far has neglected to get his own account. My own opinion of the beer is slightly below his - I couldn't place the style, but did think it was an ale rather than a lager.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.22/5  rDev +45%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark body. Basically black with some deep, reddish-tinged mahogany highlights along the surface. The creamy tan head holds quite well and leaves walls of thin tan lace.

The nose is tart and vinous with a chocolate and caramelish malt below. It's somewhat fruity from the yeast, and there's a mineralish and subtly leathery character to it as well... almost as if there was some amount of Brettanomyces to it.

The flavor is tart and vinous at the outset as well, but some nice chocolate and dark caramel maltiness does arise as it warms in the mouth. There are some hops in the background, but they never really step into the light... grassy, floral, and leafy. The alcohol is well cloaked, but it becomes more apparent towards the swallow, and even more so throughout the glass as it warms and your palate becomes aware of it. The mineralish/leathery side remains as well, lingering in the finish along with the wine and some other dark skinned fruit (black cherries, plum).

Overall, it's a really interesting, rich and exciting wine-like ale that can be enjoyed sip by sip over a long period. It's not a bar beer by any means, and it should be treated as such. I'd pair it with some very crusty, almost burnt bread, but nothing unusual like a rye (the spiciness would become overbearing) or olive loaf. And as for cheese, I'd oddly opt for something that might normally go with a Chardonnay. That's how the beer finishes, and I think something buttery like a triple cream would not only counter the beer but also accent it. Explorateur is a famous, widely distributed example of a triple cream; but I might also go for a Gruyere de Comte or a P'tit Basque which has a dry texture and earthy, nutty flavor as well. And come to think of it, maybe even a handful of unsalted, un-skinned red peanuts and raw almonds might be nice. Regardless, there's a lot going on with this beer, it should just be thought of more in wine terms than in beer terms. KUDOS!!!

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Photo of hammer09
1.41/5  rDev -51.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

New Holland Brewing Company brews some great beers. Unfortunately, this isn't one of them. I'll try to offer some constructive criticism, but it's going to be tough.

A - Light amber with a moderate head this beer exhibited lacing in thick, bubbly clumps.

S - This beer smells sweet and alcoholic with a mild fruitinees. Also detected a faint bitterness, but nothing that I could associate with hops. The smell wouldn't be too bad if it wasn't for the presence of a very strange off-odor. I've tried to pinpoint the odor, but I just can't seem to place it. Unfortunately, it's presence severely detracts from the rest of the beer.

T - Very sour and alcoholic with a lingering sourness.

M - Slightly warming, but carbonation is lacking. Basically, the beer was relatively flat.

D - I purchased a four pack of this and sampled two beers on two different occasions. Not very drinkable. I gave the remaining two bottles to a friend who used them to water his lawn (and no, not after drinking them).

Overall, this beer is a disappointment. Given the variety of things that can go wrong when brewing a batch of beer, I believe it's quite possible that this beer was spoiled when it was bottled. I'd be willing to try this again in the future, but only if I can purchase a single bottle.

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Photo of bditty187
2.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Largely clear, dull copper in hue with some amber/gold highlights; the liquid is eye-catching. Transparent white head, the bubbles rallied and united to form a finger of head. However the bubbles failed to sustain the movement and the head collapsed to a soapy collar. At this point the beer looks boring. Thankfully some spotty subsequent lacing saves this beer from dreariness. It is an interesting beer to examine.

At first the nose seemed spicy and hot with a reasonable amount of candy sweetness. I was really enjoying it. Then I went back for more, the sweetness had faded and an old vegetable aroma entered the mix. What? I smell Band-Aids… what is this beer? A lager or an Ale? Is this beer supposed to have a Belgian twist? Through it all is alcohol heat. Is this a Malt Liquor? I don’t find the nose inviting but I am going to reluctantly take a sip…

Hot, burning on the shallow… the booze is bolder and harsher than any cheap Malt Liquor I have ever drunk and I have tried Camo. Some of the flavors consist of fruity booze, malty booze, and some odd medical qualities. If this beer is a lager, well it is not clean enough nor is the malt profile crisp enough and the hop bite is lacking. If this beer is an American Strong Ale the hops are lacking, the malt needs much more juiciness, and the yeast needs do be cleaner. If this is a Belgian Ale of sorts, it lacks sophistication and direction. At times this beer tastes okay (not really good or anything but drinkable “tasty”) and other times this beer tastes messy, cloying, and like vegetables mixed with old bread. The finish is clunky; it is like swallowing a brick. What an odd beer…

Medium/medium-full in body, low carbonation, the mouthfeel is very sluggish. The aftertaste doesn’t help matters; it is long, rather sweet with plenty of alcohol warmth and cherries (hey, where did the fruitiness come from?). I don’t care much for the mouthfeel.

Well… what do I say here? I can drink this beer but does that make it drinkable? I surely don’t need any more and I probably will not seek this out. So, in my view, this beer is lacks drinkability. However, I am intrigued. Maybe this beer is so different and so odd my feeble little palate can’t handle it. Maybe my diminutive brain can’t comprehend it? Maybe I just don’t like it. This is a peculiar beer… whatever style it is. I am very happy I tried it, thank you RedHaze for the sample.

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Photo of bashiba
1.64/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Poured a slightly cloudy golden orange with a long lasting thin white head.

Smells like pure alcohol, overly sweet.

Taste is sweet grains, corn syrup, and sweet alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel is warm and syrupy.

Overall not good, I didn't finish it, I would avoid this one.

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Photo of shbobdb
3.82/5  rDev +31.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A most strange beer. It pours thick and full, like a dopplebock, yet is the colour of a fine Czech pilsner, perhaps just a touch darker. The flavour is a strange mix of fruits, wheat, yeast, alcohol, barley . . . I can't quite describe it. It is as though a Weizen and a Trippel had a baby. This child then met a Koelsch and they too, had a child. Perhaps, somewhere in the Koelsch's distant ancestry there was some wild fermented beer, some unfettered Pilgrim's Dole waiting.

Yes, this beer combines all of those elements and I am intrigued by its complexity. I'm not sure if I like it, but I like the idea of it. A beer to drink and to ponder, but buy a single, not a six-pack.

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3.35/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A vigorous pour only results in a short lived quarter in light tan head that quickly fades to just a skim. Body is a deep rich amber. Nosw hints a bit of german style pilsner, with hints of lemon zest, alchol, and spice. The taste buds are quickly awakened by a shrill sour rush that is long and complex. This includes sour lemon hard candy, raw wheat, green apple, and a noticeable hop presence in the finish. This is a very sour dominated beer, but not undrinkably so. Actually develops almost a creamy texture on the mouthfeel as it warms. For the sour feel it has it is really quite drinkable.

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Photo of Hopheadjeffery
3/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of sulldaddy
3.46/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I am sampling at room temp poured into a snifter. A euro strong lager?

ON the pour a fluffy beige head foams up about 3 cm and recedes slowly. Aroma is not lagery at all. I get roasted malt, some baker's chocolate and a bit of dark fruit. Color is fairly dark mahogany, with little lite passing through.
Very smooth, silky body with mild rolling carbonation. The body is a little thinner than expected, but not watery.
There is a bit of warming alcohol on the finish after each swallow.

Flavor is similar to nose, but fairly mild. Some sweet chocolate and dark fruit (plums) and a bit of brown sugar too. Then the beer just gets hot. Alcohol heat covers flavors and burn down throat. Definitely a sipper. Maybe not ideal brew for hot evening, but still enjoyable. I think the booze is a little higher than ideal and as a result the body is a little thinner.

Not a bad beer, but drinkability is lower due to fusol heat on finish.
An interesting beer nonetheless.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.63/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a different kind of beer. Poured out to a hazy orange golden color with a nice quarter inch head and rings of lace in the glass. Medium high carbonation. Aroma was kind of skunky, but smells of sweet malts and yeast. I don't think it's gone bad, but more or less the skunky aroma is a product of the brewing process and ingredients. Taste was pretty good; flavors of malts, yeast, sweet grains and herbs mask the 9%ABV very well. A rather unique overall taste. Kudos for that. I couldn't tell that there was any alcohol at all. Mouthfeel was good enought, but could've benefited from more zestiness from carbonation. A good level of drinkability; I could probably knock a few back before hitting the bathroom and realizing I was wrecked from the booze. A worthwhile brew. Recommended. Special thanks to sopor for the sample.

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Photo of nlmartin
2.78/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer was poured into a wide mouthed glass.

Appearance: The beer poured a hazy coppery coloration. The head was a fingers width with no staying power. Small amounts of lacing create rings on the glass.

Smell: The beer has a super yeasty smell. Very subdued fruitynes is present in the beer. The alcohol announces itself with authority.

Taste: Very subdued fruityness that is over come by yeastyness. There is a bready quality to the beer.

Mouthfeel: A meduim bodied beer with ok carbonation.

Drinkability: At first I was leaning towards hating this beer. The taste presents as a yeasty mess. However the more I drank this beer the more it grew on me. Hell maybe I got drunk and decided it was ok. I dont think I will be drinking this one again.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.25/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presentation: Tall slim 12 ounce brown glass bottle sealed with a cool looking white crown cap which has the New Holland logo on it together with the words “Art in Fermented Form”. Neck label has the Φ symbol and declared strength of 9% abv. The Main label has the word 'PHΦ' superimposed on all kinds of symbolic pictures that are referenced in the adjoining text to the right hand side of the label including the Pyramids, Acropolis (though I am sure they really mean the Parthenon to be technically correct) and Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, etc.

Appearance: Hazed orange marmalade body with big soft fluffy dirty white head that climbs and clings to the glass sides as it slowly rescinds. Layered Plimsoll lines ring the Pint glass and the crusty lacing show cases each mouthful. Sparkling carbonation is fine in nature but dominant when the glass it gently tilted.

Nose: Sweet in nature, dunked with yeast which dulls an otherwise fruity character. Some biscuit and breaded dough. The alcohol creeps through in the finish. Appealing in a confusing WTF!?!? way. Hard to describe this but it has defined character…..I’m just not sure what it is.

Taste: Biting start, some orange and tangerine litter the entrance but the middle rises with a positive 9G turn and instantly knocks your head back with a fighting sharpness. Yeast laden unwashed fuzzy peach skins mingle with a dynamic balsamic vinegar tinge. Creeping acidity finishes with a clinging acerbic vinous trait that had me thinking “off” when it first happened, later it became an acceptable part of the brew. Complex and confusing.

Mouthfeel: Solid feel, this is a quiet chap that walks with a big stick.

Drinkability: Difficult one this, at the beginning I was struggling with it, by the middle I was rather used to the “strange” character that it exhibits, but just as I got comfortable with this one, it slowly started to tire on me. What mark do you give a “Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No…” brew…guess I’ll stick with a 3.0. Whilst the average may seem a fair mark, the standard deviation is something else and tells a much different story I think.

Overall: I don’t really agree with the listing here, “Euro Strong Lager” it ain’t IMVHO. Looking at the options I think “American Strong Ale” would be more appropriate, but trivial crap aside, this one reminds me of one of those interesting yet puzzling Dudes that you meet at Parties, intriguing yet hard to fathom. Phi is 1.6180339887….and onwards….but this brew is most certainly not marked so lowly, yet it could be so easily by those that don't give it time - this does take some getting used to. I suspect this one will have a wide diversity of opinion, but I like it. Goes great with a Pickled Egg and a few hot Peppers too.

Thanks again to my good buddy BigHuge for allowing me the pleasure to sample this one. I avidly await his own Review to see what he makes of it LOL.

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Photo of ypsifly
4.22/5  rDev +45%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Undated 12oz poured into a pilsener.

Dull gold with good carbonation supporting a one finger head of off white that is sticky and shows good retention.

Malty pilsener like aromas paired with floral hops. At the same time, it smells kinda spicey. Just a whiff of alcohol underneath compliments the spice. Possibly the best smelling lager I've ever put under my nose. The aromas are not strong, but there's a lot going on here.

European malts upfront that fade into something close to lemon grass. There's a little hop bitterness paired with the lemon notes in the finish that gives it a cleansing almost tart character. This could pair well with chicken or duck grilled with lemon pepper or something along those lines. No alcohol tasted.

Smooth mouthfeel that is fuller than what I would expect from past experiences with this style. If the abv wasn't so deceptively high, this could be a really good session brew, however, the flavors make for a great dinner beer. Especially when dining with friends and a little "conversation enhancing buzz" is appreciated.

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Photo of frazbri
2.95/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Phi poured deep golden in color with a short white head and a little lace. Aroma had lemon, cider, and some earthy undertones. Moderately tart flavor, a slight herbal note, and late emmerging bitterness. Finish was dry. Body moderate-light and medium carbonation.

This is one of those beers that makes you wonder what the brewer's intention was. I don't get too hung up on style designation, but what is Phi? It's funky enough to be a Saison, but doesn't quite fit in that mold. Euro Strong Lager? I just don't know what to make of this. New Holland is a good brewery. This isn't the best beer they brew.

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Photo of ALESwhatCURESya
1.06/5  rDev -63.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This has to be one of the biggest disappointments I have come across in a long time. New Holland is a wonderful brewery, but this is borderline garbage.

The appearance is a dull rust-golden color that sits like still cider. It looks like a beer that has been sitting out in a glass for 4 days after a few cigarettes have been extinguished in it. The sticky, gross film stuck to the side of the glass in order to free itself from this vile liquid.

The aroma was pretty wicked right off the chute. A rotten, pickled cabbage smell was overpowering and resembled no maltiness or aroma hops.

The taste was foul and sharply, vinegar-like, acidic. Nothing was left to the body for me to enjoy. This seemed like it was litterally spoiled beer that was product of an infected mash. The mouthfeel was incredibly bad. I actually had a hard time putting a few sips down. There was no taste that resembled the combination of water, malt, yeast, and hops.

I don't believe that this was just a bad bottle. I am amazed that they actually bottled this rancid brew.

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Photo of Brian700
3.05/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This one poured an orangeish color with no real head.

The aroma was somewhat malty with a medicinal presence. Sort of like those plastic band-aids. Kind of weird.

The flavor is of a mixture of malts. I think there might be some wheat malt in hear. Very mild hop presence.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low/medium carbonation.

This beer isn't real drinkable in my opinion. I didn't care for it. Pretty average.

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Photo of ZAP
1.84/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

A lager??? You're shiting me!! Pours a cloduy, hazy orange color....nose is about the only thing decent..has the smell of a decent pale ale but the rest is really bad...sour, pure alcohol flavor...a hint of hops but a very poor beer overall....slight warming in the gut...9% but doesn't feel that date on bottle so I must assume this is good....if they put a date on the bottle so you'd know I might be willing to write this off as old but I don't think so and at 9% it should age better than this anyhow...

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Photo of joe1510
3.41/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle
$9.99 6-Pack
Sam's Downer's Grove

Phi pours the color of iced tea but absolutely glows when held to the light. Minimal carbonation rise slowly along the sides of the glass. A thin cap formed on an aggressive pour. Leaves drink lines after each sip.

Aroma is strange. White grapes start things off but are quickly followed by a dirty scent and a sweet sugary maltiness. Flowery and sweet. The aroma isn't all that appetizing. Not bad but not very good either.

Flavor starts off with the white grapes, somewhat sweet but also tart. Flowery mid palate with a powdery yeast finish. Not bad but that dirty flavor comes around and taints things.

Body is on the thicker side of medium and coating. Finishes bone dry.

I'd drink another of these but that would be it. A little to viscous to drink too much.

Decent beer from New Holland. I don't know if this was brewed again in the last few months or what but this was purchased about 2 months ago. According to the website last brewing was 2005.

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Photo of Bighuge
2.17/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: Dirty looking. Amber/orange. No head. Little lace.

Aroma: Stale malts. Straw. Mildew. Sweet wort.

Taste: Sour and funky. Not very enjoyable. Overly sweet.

Mouthfeel: Viscous and syrupy. Very little CO2.

Drinkability: I wouldn't revisit this if it was free.

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Photo of budsboy
2.08/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Pours pale orange, small white head fades quickly.

Sweet malt aroma, candy sugar, cotton candy ... over-the-top sweet. Alcohol is also readily detectible.

Cloying. Too, too sweet. Alcohol is a bit hot. This is like liquid sugar mixed with a bit of vodka.

Full-bodied, slick and thick. An odd astrigency lingers.

Ah, I couldn't finish this one. An attempt at a huge beer that misses. I'll cellar it, see how it ages, but I don't hold out much hope. Too bad, I really was hoping for the best. My advice: avoid.

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Photo of Blakaeris
2.03/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours hazy golden with moderate head that leaves slight lacing.

Smell is toasted malt, slight citrus, and strong alcohol aroma.

Taste is super sweet maltiness and lemony. Monstrous alcohol flavor. Finish is sour and has an ashtray like off flavor.

Mouthfeel is light to medium.

This is very sweet then very sour. Not recommended.

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Photo of Sephiroth
1.25/5  rDev -57%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

I bought this simply because I wanted to have tried all of the High Gravity series of beers from New Holland. This is a straw yellow color, slightly cloudy. The nose is of sweet malt. Not in a good way.

The taste is reminiscent of malt liquor, except for the sweetness of this one. If it just had some hops to balance the sweet malt, this might be drinkable. As it is, I wish I did not have three more of these. I would not give this to a friend, but perhaps to my brother and his swill drinking buddies.

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New Holland Phi 2005 from New Holland Brewing Company
Beer rating: 2.91 out of 5 with 26 ratings
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