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

very good
198 Ratings
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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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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 198 |  Reviews: 124
Photo of virinow
2/5  rDev -48.8%

Photo of proctah
2/5  rDev -48.8%

Photo of bylerteck
2.3/5  rDev -41.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.25

Way too much spice for me

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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.

 1,584 characters

Photo of FEUO
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

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 valianes
2.75/5  rDev -29.7%

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.

 753 characters

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.

 263 characters

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.

 657 characters

Photo of Long813
3/5  rDev -23.3%

Photo of AlexAfonin
3/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Kirk
3/5  rDev -23.3%

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.

 694 characters

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.

 291 characters

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.

 446 characters

Photo of philmen
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of jzlyo
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%

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 bigox420
3.29/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

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 ygtbsm94
3.34/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

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

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Underlig Jul from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
3.91 out of 5 based on 198 ratings.
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