Nøgne Aurora Australis II
Reviewed by Brady White on August 8, 2016 in Summer Guide
- Brewery: Nøgne Ø
- Origin: Grimstad, Norway
- Rated On: August 9, 2016
- Best Before: Brewed on August 21, 2013
- ABV: 11.0%
- Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature
- Style: Tripel
- Rating: GOOD !
This 330ml bottle pours a somewhat hazy, medium golden amber colour, with one chubby finger of puffy, broadly foamy, and kind of fizzy ecru head, which leaves but a few upward spews of whale blowhole lace around the glass as it quickly evaporates.
It smells of sauced-up pears and apples, gritty and grainy pale cereal malt, a lesser white (is there such a thing?) port barrel woodiness, candi sugar, wayward yeast, and some indistinct earthy spice. The taste is bready and slightly doughy pale malt, a sugar-boosted caramel/toffee joint, some still white wine-based port essences (the flor present and duly accounted for), further quotidian Belgo-yeast, muddled pome fruit on a bender, and more hard to pinpoint, but welcome all the same, generic spiciness. The bubbles are fairly understated in their plainly subservient frothiness, the body a solid middleweight, and strangely smooth, as the heretofore hovering booze and spice seem to do that thing where they just have to hit the can together – amirite? It finishes off-dry, the mixed malt and addled fruitiness (some of it retained from the antipodean port, sure) playing us out in a very amiable manner.
Overall, the robust character of this particular offering just about mollifies the heady shelf tag excesses – lots going on here, and in a mostly blended and easy to approach way – the port certainly doesn’t overstay its welcome, and only makes the typically strident base Tripel more gentle and inviting. Pretty good stuff, all on its own merits.