Dark Horizon 2nd Edition
Nøgne Ø

Dark Horizon 2nd EditionDark Horizon 2nd Edition
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Stout - Russian Imperial
4.05 | pDev: 13.09%
Nøgne Ø
Retired (no longer brewed)
Dark Horizon 2nd EditionDark Horizon 2nd Edition
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Reviews: 121 | Ratings: 177 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by asabreed:
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asabreed from New York

4.67/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Let me first say that I've had some bottles of good stuff for a while, and this year I've tried many. In good cellar conditions -- or what I thought were, if I'm not wrong -- I fear that I let many of them sit too long. So I decided to have a treat for myself over three or four hours, crack this open, and see what it brought. The brew, from the bottle, was created on November 5th, 2007. They recommend to let it reach maturity until fall 2009, and it should be consumed before 2020. I imagine this may last that long, but I didn't buy another bottle, and it's almost a year after fall 2009, so let's do it. Also, friends Ryan and Mary Anne just gave birth to healthy twin boys, so this is also a toast to them.

Bottle #11803. Poured into a Samuel Smith 12 oz. nonic. Purchased for around $23 -- give or take -- at The Wine Source near Baltimore, in November of 2009.

Appearance: Massively opaque, as expected, with a mocha-colored head. More retention appears that I thought would be present, with small drops on the glass, and though the head dies fairly quickly, because of the ABV I was surprised it was there for that long in the first place.

Smell: Initial alcohol is certainly present, with hints of anise, black coffee, definite caramelized brown sugar, rich hunts of chocolate and dark berries, and slight black magic marker. A lot of roast, char, and caramelization is going on all over the place. As it warms, the anise aroma adds a perfumed and nuanced sweetness to everything. Wonderfully rich and balanced all around.

Taste: Huge roasted and charred malts at the forefront, balanced nicely with the caramelized brown sugar sweetness. The alcohol is there, but welcome, warming, and almost magically visceral, if you will. The presence of berries is more dominant here than in the aroma and works well with the charred and sweet flavors, adding a third element to the already-complex balance. Coffee with two sugars comes through as it warms, along with a good sense of bitterness working with the charred malts. Chocolate is the flavor that, with each sip, works well and differently each time. I think for what they set out to do with this, it'd be impossible for it to be better, especially for the 17.5% ABV, which is, to date, the (very close second) highest ABV in a beer I've ever had. Also, I would've been shocked to find this out had I not known until the end of consumption. I also want to mention that there will probably be many folks who talk about the "heat" of the brew and that the alcohol needs to mellow. Though I don't find this harsh, I'm starting to think that the "best by" dates on the bottles should be listened to, at least for a lot of beers, and that I may not go as crazy as I did in the past with cellaring. As you can tell, I'm beyond thrilled with this beer right now, almost one year beyond their suggest maturity date.

Mouthfeel: I'm not sure what yeast is present here, but it does the job wonderfully. There's a ridiculous amount of back-end creaminess working with the middle-timed spritz of carbonation coming through. Not even close to cloying, which blows me away, since I've had so many beers less than 10% ABV that were like pure tar compared to the elements going on with body and carbonation here.

Drinkability: Sure, the price is steep, as everyone's aware, but also with the tin it comes in, wrapped in orange tissue paper, that's going to add on to the price. That said, for all the so-called amazing beers I've had lately, this is easily one of the best, which makes it an insanely delicious and euphoric treat to have. I've been plenty impressed with Nogne O so far, but this makes me want to track down every single Dark Horizon I can find in the future. I doubt I'll ever be able to get a bottle of the first edition, but I'll be trying to get a bottle of each one in the future.

Jul 09, 2010
More User Reviews:
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DefenCorps from Oregon

4.26/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle that I picked up at the Village Pump in College Park many, many moons ago. Brewed 7th Nov 2007, consumed 10th May 2014.

Pouring black with a thin, dark brown head that rises briefly before falling off to a ring, this looks dark and ominous. Nice legs too. The nose is rich and complex. I was expecting a trainwreck, but this is actually pretty good. Mildly smoky, mildly soy-like, a nice umami savoriness, deep roast, deep, dark chocolate, fudge, unsweetened cocoa, a little bit of simple syrup are all present. Simply put, this is what a near 18% stout should be. Alcohol is noticeable on the nose but nowhere near where I thought it would be.

Opening with a big roasted malt character with moderate bitterness, moderate sweetness and plenty of depth, there are layers of smoke, earth, burnt sugar, toffee, a mild sweetness, some malted milk chocolate, unsweetened cocoa, a mild spiciness from the alcohol that add some licorice notes. Some dark fruit notes are also present, but really, this is dominated by the heavily roasted malts. Ashy notes are minimal, and the excessive sweetness that plagues many high ABV stouts is absent as well. Full in body with a soft, lush feel, creamy in carbonation, this beer finishes long, smoky, mildly bitter and mildly sweet with cocoa and coffee grounds. So silky on the palate! While not as good as the First Edition, this is still excellent. I'm glad I held off on drinking this for as long as I did. Highly recommended.

May 11, 2014
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imscotty from Massachusetts

4.2/5  rDev +3.7%

A - This beer pours black as oil. A dark brown head forms and then quickly dies. A tan ring is left clinging o the glass, pretty good lacing.

S - The smell is not as strong as the taste. The most prevalent odor is oaky wood and strong vanilla. Some alcohol, roasted malt and coffee is also evident.

T - This is a strongly roasted tasting beer. The vanilla/licorice flavors are also strong complimented by soy, coffee, slight chocolate and oak. I found the alcohol to be pretty well hidden, present but not assertive. In the finish the oak/ wood flavors become even more pronounced and leave a dry sensation on the tongue.

M - This beer has a great mouthfeel. It is unbelievably velvety and rich without being heavy. Low carbonation, slightly oily. Liquid velvet.

O - This beer is a sipper, I was glad I had some friends to share the bottle with. Very enjoyable in my 8 oz pour, might be a little overwhelming in lager quantities. Drank at 6 years of age and I did not think the alcohol was too hot in anyway. I do not see how anymore aging will improve this beer, but I might put away a bottle to see what another decade will do. Not an overpowering flavor profile, but it had a pretty distance and agreeable taste. If it is worth the money is a question I leave to you, I was glad I bought it.

Nov 14, 2014
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Brent from Kentucky

4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

17.5%? Certainly boozy and a little hot, but, all-in-all for a beer packing that kind of whallop, it was reasonably smooth. Dark roasted, verging on charred, malt dominates, with a slightly slick sweetness, a touch of licorace and molasses. A pumped-up RIS, but well managed.

Sep 30, 2010
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Bitterbill from Wyoming

4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I bought this bottle from LiquorMax in Loveland Colorado. Shipped.

This pours a pitch black with a 1 finger head of tan foam. When opening, I immediately smelled the delighful goodness from the bottle.

The smell is big! Lots of notes of vanilla, some chocolate, dark fruits, toffee, fig, and a rather substantial amount of alcohol. Well, this *is* a 17.50%abv bad boy.

The taste is full of sweet caramel notes up front followed by light vanila and chocolate tones, some dark fruit)plum, raisin, prunes) overall, on the sweetish side but the hops start to move in giving me some nice bitterness to counteract the sweet. Nice balance achieved. The alcohol is there in big abundance so this is a sipping brew all the way..
Btw, head retention and lacing are pretty much non existant but that's typical for a brew of this magnitude.

The mouthfeel is medium, the carbonation is pretty lively, and it finishes definitely on the fruity side. Nice.

Drinkability? I *have* to take my time with this one as the alcohol is ever present so this would be a great choice if you're planning on hitting beddy bye after the session. As I'm having it relatively early in the day, if I finish the bottle, it'll be a long while before I pop the cap on another brew. I think I'll cap it and have some more this weekend. I think it will hold up nicely.

Bottom line: This is certainly an extreme beer but a damned good one. A very good one to celebrate the Holiday season of 2008. Highly recommended!

Dec 25, 2008
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TexIndy from Texas

3.45/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Been waiting a long time to drink this one. Story on label says it was created 11/5/07 and recommended waiting till fall 2009. Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass. Was pitch black in color. Visible carb streams on the surface. Gave it a good pour and got a pinkie finger sized dark, dark brown head that quickly dissipated into a barely there color (about what you'd expect at 17.5%). No lacing.

The aroma is still very hot. Lots of alcohol up-front but that settled some as it continued to warm up (or I just got numb to it). Also had molasses, dark roasted malts and vanilla. The taste is also very hot with the alcohol even more dominant. Not too hot at this stage to be undrinkable but I think it still needs some age to it. After the alcohol fades at the end, the base RIS flavors comes thru so the after-taste is a little muted. Wish more of that flavor was present at this stage. Mouthfeel is viscous and burns a bit from the alcohol. Hot aftertaste.

Overall, I wondered what this would taste like in a couple years. For now, it's still too hot to be very enjoyable after 1/3 of it. If you have one, keep it in the cellar for awhile and let it settle down some. Rotation - not avail in TX so got in a trade with johnnnniee - many thanks. This one is enough for me.

Jan 13, 2010
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weeare138 from Pennsylvania

4.07/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appears an opaque black with a dark tan head that slowly fades into a mild cap. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of molasses, coffee, cream, vanilla beans, roasted nuts, and a whopping amount of sugar...for some reason corn sugar jumps out though I have no idea if that was an ingredient.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a heat that's a bit rough around the edges. Hmmm. Vanilla and abrasive molasses mixed with coffee and sugar pops out. Some notes of ripe fruit shine through.
Mouthfeel is full bodied, viscuous, vinuous, sharp, hot, and tannic.
Damn...I should've given this one some more time...say 10-12 years, or so. Oh well. I'll have to man up another 25 beans and lay one down (for real) this time.

Aug 04, 2009
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RenoZymurgist from California

4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beautiful paper wrapped bottle inside a slick looking metal tube. The bottle to me to wait a year to drink it so i bought two.

Pours a dark inky black with a slight head that fizzes away to nothing. Hints of crimson at the edges it seems to coat the glass a bit when you swirl it around.

The aroma is very smooth and the interplay is subtle. Nothing seems to stick out too much and for a beer this strong you might think it a bit extreme in aroma but it is nice with some dark roasty hints and a sweet malt/alcohol mix that is nicely done and reminds me of rum a bit.

This beer dosen't come off as being as strong as it is. It drinks remarkably smooth. World class job.

Excellent drinkability. Horde a bottle of this until you can't stand it. It is expensive so it should be a rare treat which it fully lives up to. Beer lovers rejoice, this stuff is really good.

Dec 22, 2008
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Phyl21ca from Canada (QC)

3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a quite large dark brown color head with good retention but minimal lacing. Aroma of raisins with sweet rich malt with subtle lactose notes as well. Taste is also a nice mix between some deep sweet rich notes with a nice creamy texture and some dominant dry raisins notes reminiscent of a dark Belgian ale. Body is quite full with a somewhat oily texture but creamy mouthfeel with good carbonation and light warming alcohol notes. Well done overall though a bit too much to have on a regular basis.

Apr 26, 2010
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BeerBelcher from Ohio

4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I've thought that most Nogne beers I've had were largely over-rated. However, this one is terrific and by far the best Nogne beer I've ever had.

Fairly thick and very, very dark with a little bit of head. Aroma is a really rich and exquisite odor...very roasty with an extremely nice bourbon aroma and abundant alcohol esters. Mouthfeel is very slick and smooth. The booziness is apparent in the mouth, throat and chest. Really quite good.

Very good - recommended. Thanks to SurlySober for bringing over.

May 03, 2009
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John_M from France

3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

It's been a while since I had the first edition, so I'm not really sure how this compares to it. In any event, picked up a bottle of this the other day at State Line.

The beer pours a rich, dark viscuous looking black color with tawny brown head, good retention and lacing. The smell is incredibly rich; I get almost a hoppy espresso-like nose with nuances of chocolate and vanilla. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose, except there is a touch of heat from the abv. The beer is moderately sweet, but has a long, smooth, plush mouthfeel. It finishes fairly dry, and I get some dark fruits intermixed with the chocolate and coffee flavors in the mid-palate. The beer is pretty warming from the high abv., and drinkability is never going to be this beer's strong suit. It's defintely a bit heavy and tiring on the palate, and I can't imagine drinking more then a single small glass of this. Still, this is yet another strong effort from this excellent Norwegian brewery.

Dec 11, 2008
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Sammy from Canada (ON)

4.07/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Expensive bottle in metal container. Found at Premiere Gourmet and aged a year. Pours reddish black with a whisp of head. Above average carbonation, great aromas of coffee, roasted brley and licorice. The taste is mostly coffee, it is boozy, and chocolate.

Mar 28, 2010
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Seantronz3030 from Washington

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Nov 17, 2011
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bark from Sweden

3.27/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The colour is black with a brown edge. The low head is brown.

The smell is powerful with sharp sour notes, alcohol and cookies.

The taste is salty with lots of liquorice and alcohol. Dry and smooth. Full body. The aftertaste is long with salt, sal ammoniac, and burned flavours. The finish is salt.

The carbonation is light, the bubbles smooth. The liquid is thick and dense.

I have read some reviews from people who had this when it was younger. They noted that this beer was quite smoked. Those flavours are now all gone. It is still a powerful and quite heavy beer.

Jan 23, 2014
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lacqueredmouse from Australia

4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought at Monument Wines and Spirits in CA, brought back to Australia and cracked open with friends to mark my 500th BA review.

Pours a dark, somewhat viscous and oily black, just hints of dark brown around the edges, with a thin film of deep brown espresso bubbles. No lacing, and very little retention, but I expected little else from the highest gravity brew I've yet sampled. Body is surprisingly liquid in the glass though - it doesn't quite linger in its movements as much as some of the other heavy stouts I've had - say Mephistopheles, or Goose Island Bourbon County. Still, a very pleasant, dark and dangerous looking beer - one you have to respect.

Nose is a thick black punch of roasted, blackened charred grain. Heaps of toasted blackness, turbulent notes of smoke and desiccated coconut, vinous notes of peppery shiraz, and a faint whiff, if not a very noticeable one, of spirituous booze. All up, an exciting and tantalising melange of characters.

Thick, silky and wine-like on the palate. Lots of body to the feel, with a creamy welling of vanilla sheened excess. Flavour is soaked with booze, heaps of vinous oak-barrel characters, a little resin, and plenty of dark, charred malt - a character that would be overwhelmingly dominant in any other brew. The alcohol is much more prominent here, though, and the long, spirit-like warming glow that imparts, is part smell, part taste, part feel, and partially sensed through intoxication. It's a heady and mind-tingling brew. Thoroughly exciting.

A very different brew, and one that is very challenging to get my head around - the booze is certainly its most dominant character, and it's as though the entire beer has been crafted around making the alcohol character work. No doubt it will mellow with time, and I'd love to see what it's like in three or four years - it may well have matured into an absolutely astounding brew.

Sep 12, 2009
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brentk56 from North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle No. 05284

Appearance: Just like the 1st Edition, this one pours as black as night, with a small, dark head that disappears quickly; spotty lacing, but not as leggy as the 1st

Smell: Even after four years, fusel alcohol still dominates the nose; a stew of chocolate and dark fruit is discernible underneath

Taste: Chocolate fudge, up front, with a bit of cherry jam that appears just before the hot alcohol takes over at mid-palate; after the swallow, the fusel alcohol flavors dominate the finish, thought the chocolate and cherry linger underneath

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, with low carbonation and a lot of heat

Overall: While I enjoyed the 1st Edition, I decided to cellar this one for a while due to the higher ABV; guess I could have cellared this much longer as it is just still too hot for words

Jul 03, 2011
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drpimento from Wisconsin

4.59/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Holy cats! Amped beer or what, oof! Had this at a bar resto Christiana on the terrace this evening with a nice dinner. Poure with a small medium to redish brown head and no lace. Color is an opaque brown with a few cherry highlights. Aroma is complex with tree bark, leather, earth, dark ripe fruits, pipe tobacco, roastiness, dark coffee and sin. Flavor's bout the same. Fine almost too light carbonation. Almost a digestive. Pronounced alcohol. A session for discriminating alcoholics.

Jul 01, 2009
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rhoadsrage from Illinois

3.9/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a snifter)
Brewed on nov.'07 #12901

A- This beer pours an inky jet black body with a blackish hued brown head that is thick and bubbly. With each sip the beer stains the glass with a hint of black before sliding back into the body.

S- This beer has a big black inky dark malt smell with an earthy prune and fusel alcohol heat to follow. There are some yeasty notes with charred raisin in the finish.

T- This beer has a just bitter black malt inky flavor with dark honey notes and some vinous port notes. Hints of graham and black raisins with a licorice quality come through as the beer warms a bit but are still faint. The finish is a fusel heat with charcoal taste minus the smoke and an exhale of black roasted malt after each sip.

M- This beer has as medium-full mouthfeel as long as the head is around and a silky texture that thins out as it warms. There is a warm alcohol heat that turns hot pretty quickly.

D- This beer has a huge flavor of the blackest of black malt with big alcohol heat to compete with it. This beer required a water chaser after each sip just to get my tongue ready for another sip. The experience was interesting but there wasn't any balance or support by other flavors just a big kick in the teeth black malt flavor. The packaging was a bit much and I would have rather save the money and just had the small bomber without the tin. I wonder what this beer might taste like with lots of age but I will be fine just reading others experience on BA.

Feb 23, 2009
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jjayjaye from New York

4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I constantly need to be reminded about the differences between Double Stouts and RIS. Personally, I think of this style product as a Double Stout. Pours inky dark with a shallow foamy dark tan head that has little hang time. Equally little lacing as you might expect from a beverage with such high ABV. The smell is amazing! Licorice, molasses, roasted coffee beans, dark chocolate, cherry-vanilla OMG! Lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is light bodied. The high alcohol content lights up the mouth while simultaneously coating the tongue with that smooth lingering sensation of my favorite Double Stouts. There's no hiding this much alcohol...or the anticipated warming sensation. The flavor is monochromatic, world class and unique...intense barrel-aged licorice molasses. Funny thing to see that 125 BAs "GOT" this and this is only the 34th review. Sorry folks, i had to crack this one open. I need to store some of this away and use it to celebrate special occasions. A world class sipper IMO. Highly recommended. Another classic reason to appreciate reading about http://www.savorcraftbeer.com/

Jun 06, 2009
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hopdog from Pennsylvania

4.26/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle. Very nice packaging.

Poured a dark, dark black color with an averaged sized brown head. Aromas of coffee, roast, chocolate, vanilla, and nutty. Tastes of nuts, chocolate, roast, coffee, licorice, and a little smoke. Was their alcohol in the finish? Sure, but at 17+%, it was not bad or detracting. This one really wasn't that bad and I look forward to trying it again with some age on it.

Dec 29, 2008
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kindacold from Virginia

4.64/5  rDev +14.6%

Pours a nice dark brown, no head. Smells of alcohol and dark fruit with coffee. Tastes of coffee, chocolate, charcoal, raisins, and alcohol. Very, very dry. Finishes with a charcoal mocha flavor.

Dec 14, 2014
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just when you thought that Stouts couldn't get bigger or bolder....

Insane beer through and through and its intimidation begins with the pour that has both a motor-oil consistency and with a froathy maltiness that are inviting and bullying at the same time. As dark black as beers get, but with a solid tan head that holds firm for half the session but then crumbles in the presence of 17+ abv. Seriously opaque throghout.

Strong, strong aromas of espresso, bitter cocoa powder, berry-like esters, fusal alcohols, and heavy toasted barley and caramel aromas.

Flavors are equally as explosive. The espresso and roasted malts dominate the taste. Blend that with brandy-like alcohols are the beer becomes a real challenge. Nuttiness, caramel, toffee, and charred fruits struggle to offset the sharp charcoal taste. Ripe berries, plumbs, red grapes, and dehydrated fruits sit far in the background but make a subtle impact as the beer warms. A plethera of alcohol taste run the gammot of cough syrup, rum, and menthol.

Very heavy on the palate but the beer is helped by the thinning alcohols and sharp bitterness of hops, cocoa, and coffee. Very froathy and malty even to the palate- the carbonation makes this beer quite creamy and rich. But in the end, the charcoal- ashy character of the beer adds more astingency and powdery character than what is easily tolerated in even these biggest beers.

Insane. Share this one with a friend, or fifty.

Jun 08, 2009
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nriech from Virginia

4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

HA HA HA HA, found this and couldnt hold on to any more. Shared with 6 friends like it should be.

Great dark brew, a little head which was chocolate brown.

Tons of malt in the nose, vanilla, slight alcohol.

The taste. Yes, its that good. You really cant tell its that strong. If it wasnt so expensive, this would be the new Boones Farm for teenagers and bums. Very drinkable. A little sweet, maybe coffee, molasses, sugar and plum.

I will have to grab another to stash away where I cant reach it.

Aug 29, 2009
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AltBock from Ohio

4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

What an impressive presentation! This 25 oz. bottle comes in a black tin with gold markings and when opened, this bottle is wrapped in a thin orange tissue paper. The beer label had a wealth of information. This label contains the beer's specifications, a creation date, a mature date, a best consumed date of 2020, a description of the beer, a lengthy paragraph about the brewery, all the mandatory US information, and right next to the large gold Ø, a bottle number. Mine was bottle number #12892. This was one slick looking bottle.

Appearance: This beer requires a special glass, so I decided to pour this big beer into my Chimay Chalice. This beer poured what I like to call "Liquid Darkness." Saying this beer poured a thick black oil color would be an understatement. Imagine yourself in a coal mine a couple of miles below the Earth's surface without the aid of any kind of light to guide you through this massive coal mine. Just imagine how dark that would be. Got it? Good, because that's how black "Dark Horizon" is. The head of foam on this beer was short lived, but I look at the bright side. At least there was attempt to have a head of foam. The initial head of foam was about 1/4 of an inch in height and dark mocha in color. This short lived head of foam lasted for about 5 seconds and then it seeped into the pitch blackness of the beer. If you've never stared into solid blackness before, now's your chance with the 2nd Edition of "Dark Horizon."

Smell: The aroma was almost as dark as the appearance. It would be nearly impossible to match the darkness of the beer! The first aroma that came to me was the strong scent of roasted coffee beans. My nose had a hard time trying to break through the thick coffee wall. Sometime the coffee would die down a little bit and let in more aromas. Once it did that, my nose was able to pick up dark roasted malts, a dab of sweet caramel, a hint of bitter dark chocolate, a pinch of rum raisins, a splash of plum, a subtle whiff of roasted pine needles, and then this dark aroma finished up the strong scent of alcohol. Even though there was plenty of alcohol at the finish line, it wasn't overwhelmingly alcoholic. Once the coffee beans found out that it let through a ton of aromas by, the coffee beans quickly covered them back up.

Taste: The taste was super hoppy with pine, oranges, and...HELL NO! The taste was thick and heavily roasted like the aroma and almost as black as the "Liquid Darkness" appearance. After smelling and tasting this beer, I could understand if Nøgne replaced "Dark Horizon" with "Imperial Coffee Stout." It doesn't have the same ring a "Dark Horizon," but it could work. After the aroma, I thought the first taste was going to be that roasted coffee beans, but to be honest, they were more like roasted espresso beans than just your regular run of the mill coffee beans. Somewhere in between the taste and aroma, the coffee beans transformed into espresso beans. Quickly following the espresso beans was the taste of dark roasted malts, bitter dark chocolate, raisins, a hint of brown sugar, and a bite of alcohol. I knew the 17.5% ABV had to show up sometime in the taste. It was nice to see that the taste didn't get boozy. The roasted espresso beans did a nice job holding down the big bite of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: There's no denying it! "Dark Horizon" was clearly a full bodied dark roasted beer. It had an ever lasting dark roasted aftertaste of roasted espresso beans, roasted malts, bitter dark chocolate, alcohol soaked dark fruits, and plenty of alcohol. Even though there was a ton of alcohol in this beer, the alcohol didn't have that burning taste that is usually associated with a strong taste of alcohol. You'll feel the alcohol, but you won't have that burning taste in your mouth.

Drinkability: Word of warning! Take your time sipping this beer because if you drink to fast, you will get in trouble. "Dark Horizon" is one of those once in a while beers. Not only because of the high ABV%, but also the price. This beer will break your beer budget. If you decide to buy this beer, crack it open for a special occasion.

Mar 22, 2009
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emerge077 from Illinois

3.78/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Horizontal-vertical tasting courtesy of Dave. Thanks for sharing sir.
This was the only one I took notes on, and the only one really worth dissecting. The "Edition 1" had mellowed nicely, but pretty much on par with any other 4 year old RIS... soy, chocolate, oxidation, /end review.

Here we have a worthy adversary, a formidable fireside companion. Pours jet black with mahogany edges, viscous and oily, dark tan foam creeps up and ebbs away across the obsidian glassy surface.

Smells sweet and peppery, the usual thematic notes of soy, coffee, and licorice. A bit of char and stinging alcohol still present.

Flavors of plum, coffee, raisin, char, in the back is that same alcohol sting. Rich and mildly sweet, chewy feel to the body. Somewhat sludgy. Ever present sting of alcohol still hasn't been tamed... to a distracting level unfortunately, a pity as the flavors are unique and it's tasty despite the heavy handed alcohol burn.

Nov 06, 2011
Dark Horizon 2nd Edition from Nøgne Ø
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 177 ratings