Charkoota Rye | New Holland Brewing Company

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Charkoota RyeCharkoota Rye

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.79%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Charkoota Rye - Smoked Doppelbock Lager

Charkoota Rye is a Smoked Rye Dopplebock. Charkoota Rye's malty backbone is derived from a blend of rye and four other malts, including malted barley smoked over cherry wood by our very own brewers, John and Jeff.

Its smoke-forward body is balanced with tones of deep mollasses and caramel, with a crisp, clean lager finish.

19° Plato, Alc. 7.75% by Vol.

Added by Deuane on 01-04-2009

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Reviews: 132 | Ratings: 240
Photo of TheHoppiest
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a dark brown with very little carbonation or head, other than a thin tan shadow and a ring around the glass.

Smells very smokey, like a camp fire or a barbecue; some maple and molasses notes, and a meaty smell, like bacon or pork. Did I mention smoke?

Taste is not as smokey as the smell, but it is still there. Again, molasses and maple are prominent, with a decent malt backbone. There's a slight tartness, perhaps cherry or grape? As I get further into the beer, that fruity tartness gets sweeter and sweeter. Also, as I get further into the beer, the smoke becomes more prevalent in the taste, as an aroma in the back of the throat, almost up the back of the nose.

Medium to full bodied, with very little bitterness of hop presence.

Decent enough to drink, my only qualm is that I am by myself drinking 22 oz of very smoky beer. I wish I had saved this to share with a friend, because it is probity going to be too much as I get further into the beer.

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Photo of brewerburgundy
4.14/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, Bruery tulip, 2010 vintage, and a big 'ol thank you to Dunt for hitting a want.

The pour is quite still and yields up only the suggestion of bubbles, let alone head. The bubbles are predictable darker tan and flee to the edges, a few bold, big ones wander in the middle. The color is dark red with brown and has some of the purple mentioned by others.

Smoke is forward, combining with a salinity that instantly recalls Kalamata olives. Sweet wood smoke, maple, ash, brown sugar, cherry, and undeniably some cured pork suggestions.

Smoke and brown sugar are a great combination. I suppose I could have learned that from bacon, but I was raised a vegetarian. Overall it's sweet, but not too sweet, with dry wood through to ash smoothing and distracting. The base seems to be a good Doppelbock with cherry tones.

Syrupy with small, smooth, subtle carbonation. The lack of head isn't an accurate indicator of CO2. It really feels great on this beer.

I find this beer to be right up my alley. The sweetness and smoke play wonderfully off of each other without being overpowering for me. I'd love to have more.

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Photo of MrOH
3.13/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Bright ruby red

smoke dominates, jerky, hints of chocolate, concord grapes, banana, dried fruits, almond, cherry, white pepper, and SMOKE

SMOKE, grapes, quince, chocolate, bread, pepper, almond, maple syrum, SMOKE

sticky and oily with low carbonation

Could barely finish my half of the bottle.

Really complex once you get past the smoke, too bad its so heavy on the palate

From notes, 12-14-10

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Photo of corby112
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at Kraftwerk during their New Holland event on 2/5/11.

Pours a deep dark brown color that appears almost black in the glass and completely opaque with slight mahogany edges when held to a light source. One finger beige head that quickly fades into a thin ring that doesn't leave much lacing to speak of.

Nice smokey aroma but this isn't a complete smoke bomb. Nice roasted smokey character with hints of charcoal, BBQ, bacon and a campfire scent. Although it's smokey, the sweeter malt notes are evident with hints of rye, caramel and toffee.

Medium bodied with a good bit of smoke character that lingers throughout into a sweet yet dry finish. Hints of charcoal, bacon, BBQ and campfire but there's a nice balance of sweeter malt notes, especially caramel, toffee and vinous dark fruit. There's some cherry flavor from the wood aging as well as some grape, fig and plum. Well balanced and very drinkable. Not as smokey as I usually prefer but this was a good example of the style.

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Photo of HeyItsChili
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I procured a pint plus of this particular potable while perusing the products of the Greenville Beer Exchange.

A - Pours almost flat with a fleeting brown head. Deep brown beer is only transparent at its amber-highlighted edges.

S - There is a smoky element here, obviously, which runs the show. I am not sure if it's just the pig on the bottle influencing me but I swear this smells a bit like bacon. Like the red rind of a peppered slice of bacon as it burns just slightly in hot grease. Malt strongly backs up this porcine-labeled lager.

T - Oh my god. Charkoota Rye. Charcuterie. I JUST GOT IT. Anyway, this burrr is extremely malty. Really chewy brown sugar malt balled up and wrapped in bacon and then smoked for many long hours.

M - Flat and medium bodied.

I knocked the drinkability down based on my personal preference. I like the beer fine, I just wasn't in a hurry to have a second any time soon.

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Photo of Khazadum
2.06/5  rDev -43.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A- Gentle low head formation. Small retention, low collar formation and little carbonation. Crimson body with some charred paper hints.

S- The smoked body on this is exactly what you'd expect from actually smoking wood in your presence. True campfire smell, that acrid wood smoke that begins to accrue in my nostrils and bring nauseous feelings up. Lots of charred pork notes, not to much sweetness to balance it. Some smells of noxious chemicals like melting plastic as well, could be some spicy rye in there but its very hidden most of the time.

T- Opens sweet bit of malt body, but quickly the overwhelming smoke starts to destroy me. Following that is a pork presence that may have been left in the light and heat of summer. Shaved, mashed, and turned into an extract of hate to be squirted into my mouth via this beer. Finish is predominantly grainy, spicy rye. The finish is actually good after a few seconds of torture.

M/D- This is really, really, really hard to drink. Mild body, low carbonation, a bit syrupy. I find the faster you drink the easier it is to hide the awful burnt, acrid, smoky, rancid pork flavors. I'd never ever ever suggest this out to anyone ever. I've had worse beers, and as it warmed it went from absolutely undrinkable, to just undrinkable. Least it looked average.

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Photo of jrallen34
1.95/5  rDev -46.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Bottle poured into a Narke glass...Pours a super dark maghongy, bordering on an a purple eggplant, but weirdly see through, sorta. Intriguing look. A light tan head rises about two fingers, falling quickly to a half a cap. Light lacing...Aroma is mostly smoke but not done a good way at all, all charred ash. A little rye and pork, just too mush ash, like I just entered a burnt down house. Alcohol is oddly present and strong on the finish...The taste is one of the most horrible things I've ever had. Charred ask, sugar plums, rye and sugar combine terribly...Medium feel with an unfortunately lasting taste...This is not drinkable.


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Photo of clayrock81
3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Let me preface this review by saying I enjoyed the beer but I was expecting more of a dopplebock than rye beer so maybe my expectations were a little off. Poured a reddish-brown body w/ one-finger offwhite head that died quick on top of a malt aroma. Stating the obvious I am w/ that malt aroma; smokey, little meaty, oaky woodiness with some roasted/toasted malts/barley as well as touch of caramel and black cherry. A very meaty-tasting beer, and I like it, but I was hoping for a more fruit and malt complexity in the taste. The beer has a stickiness from some molasses and goes down a tad haggard in a medium body but the toasted malts and rye balance for a dry edge that isn't overpwering. Little sweet but more dry but does mellow as it warms; can't really say there's much to sweet and fruitness other than caramel and cherry.

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Photo of MillRat
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served at the Tap House on Oswego, IL from a 22 oz. bottle. Kudos to Barry at the Tap House for digging this out of the cellar on our request for a rauchbier.

A nice reddish-brown color with a tan head that never covered the surface but never gave up trying, either. Aroma was primarily smoked malt, and a hint of rye if one knew to search for it. This is fairly heavily smoked, so not a good choice for a first rauchbier unless you live on and love smoked meats. Flavor is dominated by the smoke, which is quite pleasurable if that's what you're looking for. If smoky flavors are not your preference, you'll find other options more enjoyable. Behind the smoke, there's a subtle roastiness that is better defined than the rye flavor, which helps balance NH's typical sweetish, heavy-bodied characteristic brew, which is appropriate for a doppelbock. All 22 oz of this beer would have been a little much for one person in one sitting, but quite nice split with my wife.

All in all a very respectable effort. The degree of smokiness tended to push all other flavors out of the way, detracting a bit from what could have been a more nuanced complexity. (The label boasts of "rye and four other malts," so assuming that there'd be a good portion of pilsner or munich malt as the base, and probably a carafa malt to deliver the mahogany color, I don't think one can tell form the end product what those other two malts are.) A good beer for the rauch-heads.

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Photo of gmfessen
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a pint glass, Charkoota Rye is an amber-brown in the glass, with a thin, off-white head; almost a cola-like appearance. Nose is of sweet, dark, roasty malts; black licorice, molasses, smoked peat, burnt chocolate and coffee are all present. The taste is similar to the nose with the smoky characteristics coming to the forefront. The beer is dry but not terribly acrid with a very thin carbonation. The increased ABV increases the drying effect but doesn't seem quite as high as the 8.17% listed on the bottle. Overall, as drinkable for a beer as strongly flavored and high in alcohol as a beer like this can be.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.17/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bomber of the 2010 vintage pours a mostly clear, reddish hue. Not much foam, some spotty lacing that is creamy and light brown.

Nose is salty, smoky bacon goodness. Intense, ashy and campfire-esque. Light, sweet malts are the only other players in the smell.

Burnt log smoke mixes with molasses sweetness that, for me, is a bit overpowering. I love the Schlenkerla beers, but this one is cloyingly too sweet. Bits of peppery rye come in, but mostly just adds up to a jumbled mess of un-melded flavors. I can appreciate the heavy smoke, but everything else about it does not fly with me. A half a bomber was about 8 ounces more than I wanted.

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Photo of TheSarge
4.55/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank this one out of a .5 liter dimpled glass...

With a very vigorous pour, this brew produces a finger thick milky tan head, and has a clear and dark ruby red colored body.

In the aroma, the smoke is dominant. It reminds me of Aecht Rauch Bier. Also reminds me of smoked cheddar, bacon, or a nice jaeger type sausage.

In the taste it seems like biting into a sausage sandwich, such as Cracker Barrel sausage wrapped in a thin pancake laced with maple syrup.

Lightly carbonated, with oily slickness. This brew makes a great conversation piece.

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Photo of Jayli
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed 12/3
poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours a dark brown with mahogany hues to the edges. 1/4 inch of light brown heads sits on top. Head recedes rapidly without much lacing.

S: Nose is smoke, rye, and a hint of caramel malts.

T: taste starts off nice and smokey. Not overpoweringly smokey, but it's present. A rye and caramelized flavoring then moves in. There is a hint of apple in the taste and smokiness lingers in the finish. This isn't a smoke bomb - it's nice and light.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, oily slick feel.

D: Goes down easily, not too filling, nice kick, and an interesting take on the style. I really enjoyed this beer and would seek it out again.

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Photo of suretolose
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Very dark brown. Porter like. A cream colored head that does not last long.

Aroma is smokey and a slight hint of malt. Almost a hint of iodine. Sounds odd I know.

Flavor is smokey right away. As that fades the bock creeps in with the malt. The rye hits in the finish but only for a second. The smoke is the dominate flavor throughout.

This is a good beer if you like a smoked brew. It has a lot going on and is a little complicated for my taste, but pretty good.

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Photo of philosobeer
4.19/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Purchased this one at Lush on South Halsted in University Village in Chicago.

A // Ruddy dark brown. Clear but transparency is low from thickness. The head developed nicely, but with a vigorous pour. Dark tan, thins to a film.

S // When something says "smoked" on the front, I like it to smell smoked. This passes with flying colors. (Take note, stone.) It's a roasted pig over beechwood or applewood. To me, this is damn alluring.

T // Heavy dark malt shouts at you. Smoke shouts more. Sugary malt, and it's like a brown sugar glaze on a roasted ham. The smoke and sugars, the smoking leaves and wood flavor make it a great dinner beer and I have no problem with that. If I have any complaints, it's that it could be drier, more bitter because the sugar becomes a bit much. Overall? Good job indeed, New Holland. This stuff tastes like a great beer.

M // Velvety and a bit thick. The lager lends to a cleanness that it seems is really necessary in this beer. The carbonation is mild-moderate, making this a beer that tastes like bread or a meal.

D // A single glass seems like it might be little, the bomber maybe too much. It does well for a beer-meal.

Drink this with warm sandwich of black forest ham on dark rye with swiss cheese and whole grain mustard. I'd be more than happy to buy another one of these, real props to New Holland's brewer.

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Photo of ne0m00re
3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had a 22 oz bottle of this one yesterday thanks to my bro-in-law.
A: Very clear dark brown/red yellow hues, thick cream collar.
S: Bacon-y liquid smoke, sticky sweet caramelized malts, clean finish.
T: Nice mild nutty (walnut?) smokey doppelbock, sweeter caramel, good.
M: Mildly thin, frothy.
D: Pretty good for a smoked beer.
This one melds the smokiness into the beer and does a nice job at it. Give it a try even if you don't like smoked beers.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.32/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Charkoota Rye Smoked Doppelbock Lager, New Holland Brewing, Holland, MI

Off goes the cap, then the foil, then the glug, glug, glug...

Dark brown coloration, slim head.

Aroma: all about the smoke! Big time bacon! Sweet and smokey, huge malt, rich, full, and never without the smokiness! Rich, thick, and yummy. Fills so good in the mouth, over the palate, and all up and down the gullet.

Finish: long, thick, rich....bacon wrapped around a yummy stick of malty goodness.
Rich malty goodness. Nothing but yum meets yum, wrapped in bacon, smothered in smoke, dripped with deliciousness. Mmm, mmm.

I love it.
i won't stopped loving it.
And it loves me.

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Photo of orsulacp
4.59/5  rDev +26.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a very dark brown, it is clear but you have to look close because it is so dark with a tan head. The smell is awesome, a spicy smoky malt, really smoky, really malty with a peppery note. This is the best smelling beer I have ever had, hands down. The taste is more of the same, I wish I had a smoked pork plate to go with this, peppery spice, caramel malt, and a hint of ethanol. The body is thick and heavy, but is it very drinkable becasue is tastes so good. This is an exceptional beer.

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Photo of Soccerballzz3
4.2/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - This is initially what lead me to this beer. It has a picture of a flynig pig on the front! That is kind of crazy and the simplicity of the art work really makes it stand out. I had also not seen a "smoked doublebock" before and the simple lettering on the front really made it stand out.

Smell - You get a great smell of smoked woodchips mixed in with minor beer tints and a slight hint of the cherry wood used in the smoking. Really a great aroma.

Taste - You are immediately greeted by a BOLD smoky flavoring. As if the smoke from a great BBQ were rolling in your mouth. You get the immediate smoky flavor followed by a malty, slightly bitter, but not overly intrusive flavoring at the back end.

Mouthfeel - Smooth all the way through. The finish leaves a great smokey taste in the mouth, as if you had just had a great BBQ meal.

Drinkability - I really enjoy a great outdoor cooking session and this beer would be good anytime. It would go exceptionally with any sort of meat meal, especially a cook out or a BBQ. I would enjoy drinking this leisurely just to enjoy the great taste.

Overall, phenomenal smoked beer. The first smoked beer I have tried and certainly not the last. Great job New Holland!

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Photo of innersanctum
2.71/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This was a tough one. There was some real excitement when I bought this bottle with the opportunity of a lagger from a great regional brewer with SMOKE!

It poured out of the bottle like a real tight Bordeaux that needed its time, and patience, to open up. The first pour was cold as it was straight out of the fridge and it exhited a liquorish taste and pruny bouquet. In fairness, once it neared room temperature it was a bit more palatable. As an alternative, 3 Floyds smoked lagger (Sonti?) takes less of a club you over the head approach to a smoked lagger.

Mouthfeel was not very pleasent, but palatable as a sipper at room temperature. I mean no disrespect to the folks over at New Holland, as the 'Hatter is a class act.

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Photo of Bmoyer0301
1.69/5  rDev -53.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2


Tonight I decided to use my old throw back imperial pint glass which should be a great vessel for this special ale. As I pulled the black cap of the painted bomber bottle I was greeted with a slight almost nonexistent hissing noise and a slight whiff of the smokey lager. I decided to be careful and pour slowly with a generous tilt on my glass because I want at least a two finger thick head without flooding my whole glass with foam. As I rocked the bottle back I was let down and only left with a thin layer of head that laid on the top of the dark ruby red ale. When I hold my glass up to the light there are just loads of amber and red hues coming through the crystal clear lager that also has a nice steady stream of tiny bubbles floating upwards.


Oh jeez, right of the start I am getting something medicinal that has a tiny amount of rubber thrown in. (My wife even said it reminded her of Vick's throat spray) Once you can get past the off aromas there is a boat load of smoke and caramel sweetness that is finished clean with minimal to no sulfur notes that are often produced from lagering beer. I can just picture myself sitting next to a campfire taking a big whiff of the heavy woody smoke aroma combined with earthy notes around the fire, which makes me want to go camping.


Yikes, this taste terrible. I typically enjoy all different types of smoked beers but this one is bad. Right of the start I am getting a huge rubber glove taste that reminds me of going to the dentist, followed by ashy smoke infused moss or dirt. There is a huge wood flavor that is smoothed out by the brown sugar and caramel notes which is the best part of the taste. Did you ever add the liquid smoke to any type of gravy or sauce you made? Well, this is exactly what it taste like complimented by some of the malty base beer. I feel a drain pour coming on....


Well you win some and you loose some, and this time I guess I lost. Even though this was a beer that I ended up throwing down the drain I'm not going to judge the brewery. I have had quite a few of their beers and I was really happy with them and this was the first one that was off putting. I would say that if you get a chance to try some of their other stuff , go for it because they are amazing. As far as this beer goes, I'd take it with caution. Maybe you might like it and maybe you will not but hey that's part of the fun of experimenting.

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Photo of bheilman
3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Really nice rich dark color with a decent head. The smell is nice also with some malt and a strong roast presence. Taste is great for those that love smoke beers (I believe the style is rauchbier). I don't love them. This is good, but not great. I am about to bite into some pulled pork and the bottle suggests this goes great with pork, so I'm looking forward to that. The aftertaste is nice and roasty. Not sure I like that in an aftertaste though. I prefer the bitter pale ale aftertaste. Give it a try, but not my favorite. Not sure I taste much doppelbock here, but the smoke taste is bound to go better with one of these styles rather than something lighter.

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Photo of mactrail
3.33/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The beer that leaves you breathless-- or speechless.

Beautiful ruby mahogany color, clear, but little head. The aroma is a mystery. Iodine with Concord grape juice and a touch of that smokin' bone you get at the dentist when you haven't been flossing enough. Flavor is so complex and strange, but all I can think of is carrot juice with a dollop of barbecue sauce. No, it's A-1 Steak Sauce with cherry cider. And a shot of cheap rum. Rather sweet and a hard candy flavor like artificial orange. Hops? What for?

I can't even imagine what they did to create so much bizarre flavor. Weird beer lover, rejoice. Put away a couple of bottles for when one of your wife's blow-hard relatives stops by.

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Photo of Minkybut
2.79/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured this beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. Took a couple bites of my smoked turkey, then took about three hits of this beer then poured it down the drain. I should have cooked the turkey in it, now that would have been good. The beer was smokey, nearly black. No head and way to smokey flavored for me.

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Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a dark, dark brown color with a small, light brown head of foam. It left some soapy trails of lace.

S - Campfire aroma with notes of wood and smoked meats.

T - Smoke flavor is less strong than the aroma. Good caramel maltiness that you'd expect in a dopplebock.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a somewhat dry finish.

D - This is an interesting brew. Light on the smoke flavor with a nice caramel presence.

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Charkoota Rye from New Holland Brewing Company
3.62 out of 5 based on 240 ratings.
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