God Jul | Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

334 Ratings
God JulGod Jul

Brewed by:
Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
In the US this is called "Winter Ale".

A dark ale brewed specially for the Christmas season, with a rich, complex taste of caramel. This is a strong, dark and rather sweet Christmas Beer – just the way we think a Christmas beer should be.

19°P, 30 IBU.

Ingredients: Lager, Munich, caramel, black, and chocolate malt; Chinook, Columbus, and Centennial hops; English ale yeast, and our local Grimstad water.

Added by Sigmund on 12-01-2003

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Ratings: 334 |  Reviews: 214
Photo of beerenjoyer1
4.85/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The Nogne Winter Ale lives up to it's name. The beer is a dark beer and pours with a smooth dark flow with a thin medium foam which thins out completely. The smell of the beer is malty, with hints of caramel, and chocolate. The longer the beer sits and acclimates the more pronounced the scents become which awesome in my opinion. The taste is perfect for a dark winter ale with the flavors all coming out in each taste along with small blast of alcohol at the end. This winter ale has a great mouthfeel and is full from beginning to end, love it! I would enjoy this great beer little by little to get all you can from each taste. It just keeps getting better and better! I will be getting more of this beer.

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Photo of despainmakesbeer
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thin 1/4" head at pour, settles to a light cream colored ring around edge of glass. Dark brown color. Big minty aroma, can definitely smell the pine/juniper to this one. Also has some earthiness and licorice to aroma. Moderate carbonation. Flavor has same big mint and roast characters. Thick mouthfeel. End and aftertaste slightly reminds me of drinking mint dip juice. not quite that repulsive though. Dry hop finish. Warmth brings more roast and tames the mint skoal taste. Warmth also brings some alcohol to the nose, smooths out the mouthfeel and smooths out the complex earthiness of beer. Warmth helped warm me up to this one, robust flacors seem to mellow out making it a more drinkable. Extreme piney/mint in every aspect of this beer held me back a little at first. Decent lacing on glass. Nogne O fails to disappoint again.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What makes a beer a Christmas Beer? Is it adding the predictable holiday spice? Is it just an excuse to make another beer and market it differently? Or do you pick one flavor that represents the holidays well and then hammer it home? This is the tact that Nogne-O takes in this sprucey Porter.

The expected Porter pour delivers a dark brown, slightly hazy beer with a terse rise of off-white foam with moderate lace. A standard Porter look through and through.

Aromas of chocolate and coffee carry robuts (but not out of hand) notes that provide a springboard for spicy, piney hops. All rounded with a mild smokey scent, the beer has a smoother, sweeter scent and also a sharp and bitey hop aroma.

Flavors of caramel and toffee set the tone while coffee, walnuts, and cocoa strike first. Before the initial impression of flavor settles, the on slaught of spruce, pine, and frech cut grasses from hops rival the malt taste and balance it well. All is backed by a soft earthy/peaty/smokey taste that adds more complexity and pulls the flavors together.

Robust and relatively full for a Porter, the body seems to lighten because of the fleeting carbonation, rising alcohols, and hoppy dryness. Quite drinkable in the finish for the robust nature of the mouthfeel early on.

This is a very piney and sprucey American-style Porter. A bit high on roast and coffee along with a bigger overall impression, but not yet a Stout either. Delicious and complex throughout.

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Photo of claspada
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aromas are extremely malt driven with some chocolate, coffee and caramel aromas. It's got a really interesting smell coming from the Belgian/European yeast. Smells more German to be honest.

The taste is extremely complex. It starts malty with extreme caramel/toffee sweetness but then has a slight lingering clove spiciness from the yeast presumably. There is a touch of light smoke integrated in the malt bill I presume. As it warms you get some notes of chocolate/roasted malts which adds some bitterness, or that could be from some hops, I honestly cannot discern.

Extremely full mouthfeel with amazing lacing and adequate carbonation. The lacing is really amazing though; thick and slick. Overall this is a great and really really unique tasting brew. It attacks your palate on so many levels. Worth the elevate $10 price tag in my opinion.

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Photo of Tilley4
4.37/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Man, I'm excited about getting to try this one... Heard lots of positives on it and its my turn to decide...

Pours into my Schlafly snifter a jet black with a small thin head... Spotty lacing on the glass... Pretty standard....

Unusual aromas of mint chocolate, freshly cut balsam, a little smoke, and a definite hop punch as well... A bit too cold at first but as this warms a little, it really shines in this dept... I keep thinking Andes chocolate here and it works extremely well for a winter ale... Terrific...

Lots of smoky bacon ride along with the mint chocolate and piney hops with each sip... Very earthy and dank maltiness.. Almost peaty... Quite complex for a porter for sure... Feel like I pulled a small twig off of a freshly cut Christmas tree and stuck it inside an awesome porter and it only adds to the enjoyment... Very impressive..

Slightly thin but I'm not gonna bitch about that...

Truly a terrific porter and one of the finest I've ever had... Very unusual but in a positive way... I will enjoy the holidays with this one...

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nogne Winter Ale (aka God Jul) on tap at Max's on Broadway, B'more, MD, served in a pint.

Appearance: Brownish elm color/aged walnut, kind of like your grandma's dresser. No head. Barely any lacing.

Smell: Smoke! Sun-dried cherries, applewood-smoked bacon. Sort of a morning beer, feels like a good old country breakfast.

Taste: Smoke upfront, followed by sugars. Very hearty. Like a turkey that has set the smoke alarm while the cranberry sauce burns slightly on the stove and comes out overly sweet but somehow it feels like home and we love it. A bit wrong, sure, but warm and comforting. Some spice and hoppiness to boot, cinnamon and clove. Utterly winterly/holiday-y.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation, full smoky flavor and medium-to-high body. Well balanced, alcohol is well played. Not heavy or sticky-sweet as I feared.

Drinkability: Nice! I could pound this, like a willing hole between meaty cheeks. At first, the smokiness turned me off. But as you drink, it gets better, very close to perfect. Well done!

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Photo of rarbring
3.78/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer is dark brown, almost black, a thick tan beige, some lacing.

The smell is sweet, spicy, licorice, metal and yeast. Like fermented "julmust" (Swedish Christmas soda).

The taste is very sweet, brown sugar, dates, sherry, licorice, a slight bitterness is rounding off.

High carbonation, small intense bubbles, a bit oily and sugary, a thick body, a dry finish.

This beer is not bad, but it is a bit too sweet for my palate.

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Photo of BDTyre
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great winter warmer/porter style beer from Nogne-O.

Dark mahogny-rruby with a creamy, sandy coloured head. Spice, fruit and malt nose with a fair does of alcohol warmth.

Sweet, christmas pudding taste with a mild spiciness. There are raisins, cinnamon, brown sugar, cloves and nutmeg in there.

Very smooth, light carbonation. A bit of alcohol warmth there, but it doesn't take away from it.

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Photo of avalon07
4.6/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark brown color and a thick texture. Some floaties present. There was an inch and a half of long-lasting, tan-colored, foamy head. Excellent lacing.

S: An enticing aroma of malt, chocolate, spices, coffee, and barley.

T: Tasted of nutmeg, chocolate, coffee, malt, and barley. Very complex and easy to drink. Not a classic English Porter, but in my opinion better than most in the style.

M: A well carbonated beer with a somewhat slick finish. Medium-bodied.

D: Absolutely excellent. One of the best porters of any kind I've had in awhile. Highly drinkable.

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Photo of Gehrig
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep, dark brown body with two fingers of mocha froth on top; nice duration and lacing. Lots of chocolate, coffee, and molasses in the smell, with a little spice (ginger) in tow. Good taste, spicy and dense in malt. It reminds me of a winter warmer, though it is far less spicy than "Peculiar Yule." It compares rather favorably with Sam Adams's Holiday Porter.

Delicious stuff, not very complex but certainly flavorful, Nogne has a solid, tasty porter here. Nicely done.

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Photo of SleepyMonk
3.87/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chilled 0.5l bottle poured into an english style pint glass.

When this English Porter begins to pour out into the glass you immediately get the feeling that this is a solid and substantial offering.

The chocolate dark beer rolls smoothly into the glass and even begins to look as though it will yield very little if any head at all but then things get a little bit more aggressive the head begins to grow and as you stop to reconsider if perhaps it has been poured a touch too quickly the head starts growing down from the bottom in a sharp rolling motion and then it settles down.

The aroma of this is not subtle it leaps out at you and clings to your senses even before you put your nose into the glass. The aroma in short is wonderful.

Molasses, coffee and hints of a creme brulee brown sugar glazing stand out immediately. Seated behind are equally tasty malts and fresh hops.

At first the taste is confusing. The aroma begs you to partake in a sweet blend of chocolates and toffee malts however the initial taste is bitterest of the most bitter hops until it tames off a bit to give away a chewy burnt taste with alcohol dryness.

The mouthfeel is robust and the sensations are just as much of a rise as the taste palate. Initially upon the first sip and the next few mouthfuls that follow, it is as though all of the characteristics occur simultaneously. This then introduces bitterness, then a chewy sugar sensation before drying off ever so slowly.

This is beer worthy of recommendation, although only perhaps those partial to the style. I am really starting to develop a strong appreciation for this brewery.

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Photo of tempest
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Tap and Table. I was curious and asked the manager why they had a Winter Ale in May, and he said they just like to get Nogne-O beers whenever they can. I guess now they can get it. Anyways, this beer was a big chocolatey imperial English porter, if I can make that style up. It's full of caramel, toffee, and mild (not too) dark chocolate flavors. The big, smooth candy flavors are complimented by subtle citrus hop flavors that help keep the malt flavors nice and dry. Check this beer out. It's not your average strong porter.

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Photo of mralphabet
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pt .9 oz bottle poured into English Pint glass

A: Black with Redish brown accents, tan colored head that settles to a like layer of foam. Just a little lacing, but this rew looks great here as it pours.

S: There is a lot going on here.... Chocolate, molasses, coffee, Caramel and a slightly floral hops smell. The over all feel with the smells is rich. I'm also getting a slightly boozey alcohol. Overall very interesting.

T: I'm getting a strong mix of all the smells, more on the coffee side in the aftertaste. Overall a sweet mix of chocolate, molasses, caramel and coffee.... everything coming in that order. There is a little hop bitterness mixed in the end with the coffee notes. Very flavorfull.

M: Mid to heavy bodied with a warm alcohol feel. The carbonation is light. Very nice English Porter.

D: This is a great winter warmer... I'd say one will do you, and one is all you need of this wonderful brew. I'm drinking this one a little late but wonderful none the less. Look for this one next winter.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.73/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Near black, off white thick head....stays for awhile.

S - Coffee coffee coffee coffee. And a little malt.

T - Burnt coffee, a little ash tray. Nice but not.

M - Creamy, overly bitter, which is probably where the ash try comes from.

D - The one is enough.

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Photo of Bisho
4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Currently this one goes down as my favourite Porter of all time. I was blown away by their Imperial Stout and this one is no slouch either!

Was almost black in colour with a charcoal grey two finger head. When it settles there is quite a bit of lacing and light speckles of yeast.

Light spice on the nose underneath the chocolate, coffee and dark malts.

More weight on the palate leaving me thinking this is almost a stout. Has a taste similar to the nose with a slight burnt caramel flavour & dark raisins. A light sweetness rounds out this gorgeous beer.

Silky but full in the mouth and the reasonable ABV becomes noticable when it approaches room temperature.

This is a must try!

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Photo of glid02
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased from Green's on Ponce in Atlanta.

Pours one shade from black with a two-finger light brown head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of light caramel malts with hints of black malt and unsweetened chocolate. As the beer warms leafy and slightly spicy hop aromas waft out.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though a bit more robust. Dark caramel malt flavors with mild amounts of black malt kick things off and are joined midway through the sip by good amounts of cocoa powder. Before the ending mild amounts of citrus and leafy hop flavors enter into things then carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a very nice thickness with soft carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall I thought this was a solid beer if a bit understated. Worth a shot.

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Photo of dstc
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a midnight black, yep, can't see through this puppy. Real foamy tan head stays and stays. Thick, clingy lace.

Has a very roasted malt aroma. Some coffee and burnt sugars.

Roasted malt taste. Like the aroma you pick up slight coffee and cocoa. Burnt quality to it. Alcohol is very noticeable.

Full and smooth in the mouth. Creamy with low carbonation and an alcohol bite.

Nice brew. Much enjoyed.

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Photo of bilyboy65
4.49/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pouring my first glass almost caused the head to overflow it. After reading Jason's review I can say his warning is warranted.

Except for the brown head and the brown chunks of yeast floating in the glass this beer is pitch black. I'm guessing a million candle watt light to shine through this sucker. Nothing really marking the path on the glass however. This beer is very complex and as it warms to room temperature the more that becomes apparent. Starts off with the simple porter characteristics...malty, yeasty and somewhat bitter. Then as it warms it seems to develop a nice chocolate, caramel and slight hoppy scent to it. The taste follows the same path and it's awesome to drink in it's transformation. Very smooth heavy bodied beer, with surprisingly only a slight oily trail. This is easily one of my favorites and this is the first time I've ever had this beer.

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Photo of becktone
4.92/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From notes 12-10-09

Eye: Good head retention and formation, creamy in appearance...and though the retention is pretty good, it could be better. Color of the head is dirt brown, well its got some reddish orange tint kinda like dirt with some iron in it, but not too much. Lacing forms in sheets. Color is extremely dark brown, so as to look black, opaque. Really a nice looking brew.

Nose: Stoutish in aroma. Lots of dark malt, roasty/toasty notes, chocolate-milk chocolate-, but nothing burnt or black though. Light notes of toffee, light candied aroms such as Worthers Orginal candies-butterscotch. Candied malt ball aroma too, there's also something so familiar and very likable about this that I just can't put a finger on...feel like its some candy from my childhood. Awesome, very nice!

Edit: Ah! I got it! that aroma is reminiscent of candy corn, the white, orange, and brown kind...so, yeah, chocolate

Tongue: Definitely roasted in flavor, dryness from grain, but not really roasted bitterness. The flavor isn't quite like that of the aroma, I feel that there was much more depth in the aroma. Chocolate notes, but not as in the aroma-not like the candy corn....this is more like dark chocolate not milk. All in all very nice, great to drink on cold days. I'd alsmost say its like an American Imperial Stout meets Russian Imperial Stout meets Porter, great stuff...this may beat out Old Rasputin for me.

Feel and Drinkability: Low carbonation, but fine give this beer a full feel and a thick body. This one is just too much, feels great in the mouth. Velvety and creamy in the mouth. This is one I am sad to see quickly disappearing from my glass...hahaha. I'm definitely enjoying this beer and am strongly thinking about buying another. Definitely pick this up, its perfect on a cold day after trenching out in the snow after some hard work. Give it a go, it'll definitely warm body and soul.

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Photo of four20man
3.91/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a pint glass. Rich, creamy head flows up the glass immediately leaving a cloudy, deep amber-brown, but thin body underneath.

Not much aroma. A faint dark toasty scent that smells a bit chocolaty to me (I have a slight cold).

The chocolate notion is reinforced by the taste (Choc malt). Sweet, carmely, malty flavor that lingers on the back of your tongue. Delicious beer for a after dinner, or with soft, creamy cheeses and nuts or just for a night cap.

Little to no lacing on the glass, yet the head stays consistently creamy throughout. A decent amount of sediment is built up on the bottom of the bottle can be poured for a nuttier flavor at the end.

Would buy again next winter. Good Job Norway!

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.41/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

There's nothing like a warming ale on a cold evening. 500 ml bottle, on to the beer:

One word to describe the appearance: rich. Thick, whipped, luscious head on top a body of pitch black, which resists the shine of a light. It's too bad the aroma isn't the same as the sight though. Some mild dark malt tones. It hints chocolate fudge. Very low on nose power. As it warms, some cocoa intensifies, resulting in one more notch of the aroam score.

Mellow and balanced. There is some semi-sweet chocolate in the begining. The chocolate becomes drier and less sweet. Some hops are present, which provide a tocuh of piney flavor. Smokey as well, almost like the aroma of bacon. In the start of it all, I was getting a few plastic notes, but that has dissaperaed. If it weren;t for that, this beer would probably score even higher. The strength is hidden incredibly well. There's no sign of booze, and it's never "heavy" on the palate. Extremely smooth. I find it incredible how this bottle is nearly gone, yet it is 8.5% ABV.

In short, Nøgne Ø Winter Ale is great. This beer is just another reason why Nøgne Ø is my favorite of the "new school" European brewers that I've tasted.

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Photo of CampusCrew
4.65/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

appearance: deep dark brown, nearly ebony color, nice lacing body.

smell: nice chocolate/coffee aroma and roasted aromas

taste: tons of caramel but not sweet. rich flavor, mayeb the best porter I have ever had. Probably because it's like an imperial. Like the bitterness on the back vs sweetness

mouthfeel: medium to full bodied

drinkability: quite possibly the best porter I have ever had. american or english

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Photo of Mora2000
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to my brother for bringing this one to me from Lafayette.

Pours dark brown with a beige head. Aroma is roasted malt with some chocolate. You also get some alcohol. Flavor is a lot of smoky dark fruit as well as some roasted malt. Medium mouthfeel and high drinkability.

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Photo of BTPete
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle recieved in Mahar's advent beers.

Poured to two pint glasses.

A: A dark brown with 2 inch dirty head. The bottle was left unattended while I grabbed a glass and it gushed all over the table.

S: Malt driven with some chocolate and coffee and maybe toffee or caramel aromas. It's got a really interesting smell.

T: A unique flavor. Malty but some bitterness at end. Due to hops or maybe cocoa? It also has an interesting floral or sourish type flavor that is subtle but is there. Very unique.

M: Pretty carbed up and active. Like I said the bottle gushed over when left alone.

D: Drinkable and interesting. Had after a Central Waters coffee stout so it seemed a little less flavorful than that but was a good beer. All that sampled enjoyed.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.43/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a deep, opaque, coffee-like sable with a frothy beige head. Aroma is malty with an overtone of molasses and hints of smoke and spice. Rich flavor has tones of molasses, unsweetened chocolate and coffee with just a whisper of sweetness. Texture is thick and heavy, smooth and fizzy, leaving a finish like smoky molasses. Happy Holidays!

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God Jul from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
4.09 out of 5 based on 334 ratings.
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