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

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Underlig JulUnderlig Jul

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

Style: Herbed / Spiced Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
15°P, 30 IBU.

Also sold as "Peculiar Yule".

Ingredients: Maris Otter, Munich, caramel, and chocolate malt; Columbus and Cascade hops; 5 different spices, English ale yeast, and our local Grimstad water

Added by Sigmund on 11-03-2004

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Reviews: 123 | Ratings: 196
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
2.45/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - a reddish amber beer. The head is hefty and a full two fingers in depth. It has a poppy, fizzy character like soda but hangs around at a half finger. No lace at first, but some stray streaks occur on the glass as we go.

Aroma - lots of spice presence. The blend resembles cola. Ginger and cloves dominate after setup. Very spicy and festive, but could use some balance to the other non-ginger ingredients.

Taste - a sharp, acrid twang outta the gate. Sort of tastes like this one has turned or is well on its way in that direction. After the acrid flavor, the ginger holds the palate mostly, I can pick up some coriander too. I hope that sharp bitterness isn't hops; if they are it ruins the beer. Just too bitter for a seasonal spice beer. Finishes unpleasantly, save a little fading spice. An occasional note of roast and/or coffee with warming. Maybe this is last year's edition, can't tell from the label.

Mouthfeel - slightly smooth, fairly sessionable body, very peppy with the bubbles.

Drinkability - I am going sip by sip, wondering if a drain pour is imminent. Perhaps I will try a bottle this winter when I am certain to get a fresher bottle...unless this is this year's bottle in which case my scores are warranted. Reading some other reviews, I see a number of others mentioning the astringent flavor, I guess that's the 'peculiar' angle? At any rate, not for me, more for you. This did get better as it went, either me and my taste buds making the most of the situation, or some of the other flavors balancing better. Despite, not one I'd seek out again.

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Photo of jdhilt
2.51/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a three-finger cream head that fades quickly to a ring leaving some lace. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Deep brown color, ton of yeast left in bottom of bottle. Nose is spicy and piney. Flavor is spicy and medicinal with a bitter dry finish. Spices overwhelm, not for me. Pricey at $9.95 for a 500ml bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

 360 characters

Photo of twiggamortis420
2.83/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a very dark brown, almost black color with some reddish highlighting around the edges. Fine-bubbled dark tan head has pretty good retention and ok lacing.

Christmas in July! Pine needles, tons of nutmeg, cinnamon and brown sugar. There is a definite underlying bready, yeasty aroma. A bit of chocolate and caramel maltiness shows up upon further inspection. Very interesting and also very Christmas-y smelling brew.

Tastes like a pine sap and allspice sandwich. Has a lingering, unpleasant astringent aftertaste. Has plenty of bittersweet chocolate, ginger spiciness and cinnamon. Too spice-laden and piney for me. Never thought I would come across a Nogne O beer I didnt like, but this one does not do it for me..

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Photo of harrymel
2.84/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a dark brown with ruby tones upon light penetration. Single finger fine latte head slowly hangs out and remains a thick quilt. Little to no lacing.

S: Wow, did they dump a vat of cloves and tea tree oil into this one?! The herbs are amazingly strong on this beer. some hints of cinnamon, vanilla. Otherwise, I can't actually reach anything. Way overdone on the spice.

T: Huh, the malts are still strong here. Although the aforementioned spices remain the dominant flavor, the malts provide a good roasty, malty, sugary tone. Good flavor. Still, nose dominates.

M: Medium body with high carb. Nothing special here.

O: They abused their access to spice. Tastes like mulled wine, which has been mulled again. Way too much spice. dissapointing.

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Photo of nick76
2.88/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle labeled Peculiar Yule. The aroma is complex with toasted malt, spice, pine hops, soap, and brown sugar. The appearance is brown with a big head. The flavor is like the aroma but not very impressive. The palate is smooth. Overall its a little disappointing.

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Photo of brystmar
2.9/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Sold as "Peculiar Yule" in NYC.

Dark brown with a solid finger of tan head. Strong, sticky lace. Looks like the St. Bernardus Christmas ale, and smells just as strongly of spice. Sweet malts in the nose as well, but just too many spices here for me to pick them out individually.

Full-bodied with a wild, bitter taste. Hints of chocolate up front, but quickly overrun by the massive spices. Much more herb-y than expected; sharply bitter (more spicy bitter than hoppy) to finish things off. Reminds me of chewing on a mixture of green baking herbs, and about as pleasing on my palate.

An interesting brew to say the least, but not one I'd purchase again.

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Photo of albern
3.06/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is one of those that are too sophisticated for their own good. There was simply too much going on in this beer and the spices just didn't blend. The beer poured a nice dark copper color with a decent head, some retention, no lacing. The nose was ginger and hard to pin down sweet malts.

The taste was overpowered with ginger. After the first sip, it was ginger all the time. There are other interesting spices, such as coriander, cloves, cinnamon, and lots of different hops, but the ginger was just too much and didn't blend in well with whatever else the brewer was trying to concoct. I wasn't sold on this beer and I was more than happy to share my 22 ml bottle with someone else.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.18/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a black with a deep brown head. Nose was cocoa, ginger, clove and some cinnamon. Taste was roasted and chocolate malts with clove,ginger, cinnamon. Mouthfeel was creamy, pretty heavy bombied and the spiciness at the end was nice. Overall a a pretty good brew just did not fit me well.

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Photo of brotherloco
3.21/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Gorgeous pour. Coffee colored body with light tan head.

Smells like aftershave and Angostura bitters. Not unpleasant, but definitely peculiar!

Taste matches the smell with a bit of added malt backbone. Quite light with a soapy aftertaste. Not really fond of the taste overall, but it's light enough not to offend.

Overall this tastes like a cocktail more than a beer. I appreciate the different qualities, but don't feel I need to drink again.

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Photo of Benway
3.29/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

The joy of this beer is in its exact representation of the stated ingredients on the bottle. It says things like 'ginger' and 'cloves' and that's what you get. There is no nuance here, it's overt but not to the detriment of the entire product. Instead it's a proud statement of the ingredients.

The appearance is just fine and typical of a holiday winter beer.

The aroma is wonderfully pungent. Other than the presence of ginger, the only thing I wasn't smelling was an evergreen tree. Ginger and clove were the two dominant forces here but the other spices chimed in as the beer warmed.

As for taste, surprisingly mild in comparison to the expectation set by the nose. This is a good thing. There are times when taste and nose can be appreciated separately. This is one of them. I didn't want the beer to taste the way it smelled. In this case, the beer was light on the tongue in terms of crispness. The ginger lingers quite a bit and you have to make an effort to get to the rest. There is a mild bitterness imparted by the hops but the gist is spice. Definitely compelling.

As for drinkability, this falls into the one and done category that is best shared amongst guests who are already drinking spiced eggnog.

 1,219 characters

Photo of thekevlarkid
3.29/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Out of a bottle this beer was a dark garnet color with LOTS of visible rising carbonation. The head was a billowing monster of tan foam. All three fingers retained easily as a rocky cap that slowly left lacing all down my glass. The aroma was roasted malt, lots of spices (nutmeg, cloves and white pepper in particular) and some ripened fruit. The flavors were semi-sweet at first, caramel malt and hints of toffee punctuated by the holiday spices but then the taste got weird. The swing was at once very bitter and woody/root-like, as though the hops went bad and the malt too earthy. Rough way to finish. The mouthfeel was good but slightly watery, the body medium/full and the carbonation very nice. A peculiar yule beer indeed...

 733 characters

Photo of Dhren1979
3.33/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed: March 5, 2011

Vintage: 2010

A: Pours a deep brownish red color. Very nice clarity. Head is ample and holds its form. Lacing is sticky.

S: The aroma of freshed baked gingerbread cookies. Spicy cinnamon. Faint hop aroma(?).

T: Ginger! Ginger & cinnamon spice is very dominant. Slight chocolate taste is detected. Surprising.

M: Medium body brew. My mouth is tingling from all of the spice! Not necessarily a good thing.

O: Good but not something I could drink much of. Maybe once a season. However, not sure I'd be buying again if I see on the shelf.

 564 characters

Photo of froghop
3.38/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours a dark brown with a red tint, medium size creamy tan head, and great lacing.

smell is christmas spice, some fruit, some maltiness.

taste is very spicy, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, malt, eggnog, and pine, end is a little dry.

overall very strange, yet in a good way.

 272 characters

Photo of Grabbin2nd
3.42/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From Notes: 3/3/09
Nogne O Norway
Peculiar Yule 2008 - Underlig Jul
6.3% Abv.
500ml bottle in NB Snifter

Appearance= Vigorous pour in NB snifter yields a 1.5 finger tan head. Dark Opaque beer.

Smell= Spices! Roasted malty goodness. Nutmeg, cinnamon, clove. Zest also.

Taste= Interesting taste. Definite Holiday style brew. Not a bad flavor but not something i would reach for a lot (good thing it's a seasonal). The spices have a lot going on for my taste.

Mouthfeel= Thicker side, definite carbonation. Smooth and creamy.

Drinkability= Meh. It's alright. Taste is average. Smell is a little above average. Mouthfeel is european if that makes sense. Beer overall is average. Not good, but not bad. Good to try, wouldn't buy it again though.

 745 characters

Photo of spinrsx
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

500ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $6

Appearance - Hazy brown colour with an average size fizzy beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some fair lacing. The head lasted for around 2-3 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel/butterscotch, dark fruits, pine?

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel, and pine. There is also some apples, blueberries, and some light chocolate.

Overall - Whoa, lots of odd tastes going on here. Kind of like a stout mixed with a Christmas brew. Not something I'd seek out again, but worth trying to see how different a beer can taste.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

These guys haven't let me down yet so here's hoping this is another winner...

Pours a very dark reddish brown with a very small wispy head... Very murky and dark... Fairly unremarkable...

There's a sweet malty base here that has hints of pine aspects as well as a little hint of chocolate... The smell is not that prevalent really...sort of... Bleh...

Chocolatey maltiness gives way quickly to an astringent piney flavor followed quickly by a weird aftertaste...this ones sorta weird... Rather different tasting... I wonder if this one is past date... I can't imagine the guys at Nogne meaning for this brew to taste like this...it just doesn't seem intense enough in the taste dept...

Sort of a disappointment really... I'm writing this off to an old bottle and will revisit this one if I can find it fresh...

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Photo of OutFox
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a 22oz bottle.

A - Beautiful light brown burnt tan head with a thickness to it. Body is darker brown and quite attractive.

S - Spices! Xmas spices! But its more than that. Its sort of like a floral smell to it. I must say its peculiar. Not what you get from a normal xmas beer.

T - Same as the nose but has a sort of oak to it. Its different which is what i really like about it.

M - Almost porter like. Not exactly typical xmas beer. Really enjoying it.

O - Its definately different. Perculiar is the best word which is the title for the english version.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark cola and ruby colored hue beneath an awesome tan, two-finger head. Great retention and stickage. Lots of lacing!!! Great looking beer. Holy cardoman! Very herbal, spicey aroma. Makes me think of an old fashioned European Chistmas cookie. A little too spicey though. The taste is equally as spicey, the cinnamon and ginger i noticeable, but the cardoman takes hold of both the nose and tongue. Some of chocolate malt adds some roast character. The hops only increase the spices potency. Herbal spicey palate wrapped in a medium body.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Murky dark brown with lots of floating debris. Not the prettiest color, but nice off white root beer head slow to leave to disk. Lots cling lace.

S - Christmas spices. Think turkey, pumpkin pie, maybe a lamb rub. Thyme, rosemary, that kind of thing.

T - Taste is more subdued, thankfully, on the spices. They kick in at the finish pretty well, though. Almost menthol...

M - Ok, not my style so maybe biased. The flavor is a little too overpowering for me and not necessarily balanced.

D - Not for me.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.57/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours very dark brown with a large, fading head.
Nose shows ginger, roasted malt, citrus and cinnamon. The spices definitely dominate. Nice but perhaps a little full-on. I would have liked the base beer to stand out more.
Flavours are a bit of a surprise, I was expecting sweeter. Instead there's some roasted malt and a lot of herbal bitterness. The spices aren't as prominent as in the aroma but there's still some ginger and cinnamon present. Body seems light on, could be higher.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This Peculiar Yule labeling could be called Peculiar pine because of the unordinant amount of pine flavor in the beer.

The base is likely a big Brown Ale or a moderate Porter with heavy notes of nuts, toffee, caramels, toasty, bread crusts, and lesser notes of chocolate and coffee. Very malty and firm from beginning to end in true Nogne O fashion.

The heavy pine and resin-forward hops dominate the substantial malts with IPA strength and bitterness. Hops are complimented and compounded by a huge burst of nutmeg, allspice, and other Christmas spices.

The beer is well formulated and well brewed but if you think that the downfall of Chrismas Ales are the over use of spices then this will definately be too much. Enjoy!

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pour is deep reddish brown with a large compact tan head that settles into pretty nice lacings.

S: It smells like X-mas; cinnamon, cardamom, coriander and ginger (-snaps). Then there's malt, slightly chocolate.

T: Taste follows the smell. A little sweeter, though. Some bitterness, rather from almonds and nuts than from hops.

M: Long bitter aftertaste. Body is full and carbonation moderate.

O: They overdid the X-mas-part; too much spices dominated over malt and hops.

 478 characters

Photo of liamt07
3.66/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from the LCBO, 500ml into a tulip. Batch 841B, Best before July 17, 2014.

Dark brown, deep red hues at the edges. Tan head, good retention and spotty lacing. Nose is heavy on the ginger and clove, almost minty or "winterfresh," huge spicing all around. Some sweet bready character in the distance. Taste has the hops upfront, bitter pine, ginger and herbal character. Also some roast, toasted malt and chocolate. Medium body, with some bitterness and a slight drying sensation. Not sure about this as a winter warmer, but this is fairly unique.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.72/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This poured out as a deep reddish brown color with a nice looking cream colored head on top. The retention and lacing where pretty strong on this beer. The smell of the spice comes out big on the nose. Plenty of cardamom and cinnamon aroma fill the nose on this. There is plenty of spice in the flavor of this one as well. The malt adds very little sweetness to the beer, it's herbal and dry in the finish. The mouthfeel is a bit on the thinner side, I would have liked it to be a bit heavier to really add some depth. Overall it's a decent Winter brew but nothing spectacular.

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Photo of claspada
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aromas are like a Holiday spice cake; with cinnamon, gingerbread, clove, allspice, and maybe some nutmeg. Kinda smells like a Dr. Pepper a little as well.

The taste was like biting the head off a gingerbread man. A nice bready, dark caramels with a boat ton of spices. Allspice and cloves and nutmeg. Good malty brew with long subtle bitter aftertaste from all the spicing or maybe some hops which leaves a nice dry finish. Toasty malts, chocolate and a little anise show up as the beer warms.

Overall I enjoyed this beer because of it's uniqueness and it's enjoyable on a nice cold winter day. Definitely not a beer to have more than one of or that I really ever need to have again, but I am glad I tried it.

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Underlig Jul from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
3.91 out of 5 based on 196 ratings.
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