Brewski Gno More Gnomes

Reviewed by on December 19, 2016 in Holiday Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Brewski

  • Origin: Helsingborg, Sweden

  • Rated On: December 19, 2016

  • Best Before: July 13, 2018

  • ABV: 10.0%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Barley Wine

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

Sweden’s Brewski Micro Brewery produces this barleywine (brewed with figs), which is a collaboration with Evil Twin, of whom Brewski is apparently big fanboys.  A fittingly named offering, as we count down the week ’til Christmas Day.

This 330ml bottle pours a mostly clear, dark orange-brick brown colour, with three fingers of puffy, finely foamy, and somewhat creamy beige head, which leaves a few instances of bay-spanning bridge lace around the glass as it slowly seeps away.

It smells of bready caramel malt, a touch of biscuity toffee, some earthy Middle Eastern fruitiness that could be figs (but also dates or prunes), red grapes, a bit of tanned leather, faint generic tabletop spice, and very tame leafy, weedy, and mildly perfumed floral hop bitters.  The taste is semi-sweet, doughy caramel malt, toffee pudding, muddled fig/date/Muscat grape fruity notes, black pepper dust, a subtle under the basement stairs mustiness, and some plain, if rather bitter earthy, leafy, and herbal hoppiness.  The carbonation is adequate in its basically supportive frothiness, the body a solid medium-heavy weight, and mostly smooth, perhaps some of that seemingly free-range bitterness making a few nicks in the fresh paint job here.  It finishes off-dry, the big malt, exotic cradle of civilization fruitiness, and gentlemanly warming alcohol keeping the party going well past bed time.

Overall, this is a pretty decent example of the style (straight-up barleywine, that is, as it is neither English nor American in its bearing), with a nice boost from the adjunct figs.  Not to mention the well-integrated 20-proof alcohol quotient – any more of this, and I might indeed be seeing gnomes, and not just the ones on my neighbour’s lawn!

Brady White

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