Total Score: 8.75/10
Looks like it’s finally time for a Naked Island Red Yuletide – or Nøgne Ø Rød Jul as it is otherwise known. So this is Nøgne Ø’s Christmas beer, and listed on various beer reviewing sites as a Double IPA, though no doubt it will have some crazy Nøgne Ø Norwegian twist on the style. I’ve had 4 beers from Nøgne Ø, and so far their Imperial Brown Ale has been the stand out, though I still like HaandBryggeriet’s experimentality if we’re talking breweries in Norway, Naked Island have stepped up their game in this regard over the years I’ve been drinking craft beer – they’re neck and neck now. Anyway let us crack on with Red Yule, I’m keen to see where this one goes.
Poured from a 500ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.
A: Hazy caramel body, tinge of rust in it, with a tan head that sits nicely on top given the 8% ABV. Stalactite lacing inside the glass as well – this certainly is a very Rød Jul… that is: good proteins in this brew. Noticed yeast clumps in the pour. 8/10.
S: Fruit esters aplenty – dark fruits, juniper berry and lychee. Lingering caramel malt touches, this is a great aroma – bit of everything going on here. Touch on the sweet side I suspect, however my suspicions will soon be de-suspected… yeah I reckon I can get away with making up that word. 8/10.
T: Not overly sweet actually… quite spot on… above flavours: dark fruits, juniper berry and lychee with a nice caramel malt base. Finish is long and drying with a hint of herbal bitterness. Aftertaste is a lingering dryness. Balance is… great! This is Norwegian brewing at its most Norwegian: A Scandinavian take on an American style, with juniper dryness complimenting juicy lychee – skål Nøgne Ø! 9/10.
M: Mid to heavy bodied with a dense, almost creamy carbonation, noice work Noggs. 9/10.
D: Beer of the night… and quite possibly the best beer of the (action packed holiday time!) week… *checks stats* close but Feral Finn Diesel wins that honour (it was a pretty special week here) but Nøgne Ø Rød Jul comes in as 2nd best beer of the (action packed holiday time!) week! YAY Nøgne Ø! TBH the only reason Feral beat this brew was a personal flavour preference thing – I’m not a huge fan of dry brews, however I can see the technical brilliance at play here from Nøgne Ø, and for me they keep going from strength to strength, keep it up you Naked Island people. 9/10.
Food match: Cheese platter or festive food, you decide.