Sound Entendez Nöel

Reviewed by on December 29, 2014 in Holiday Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Sound Brewery

  • Origin: Poulsbo, WA, US

  • Rated On: December 24, 2014

  • Best Before: N/A

  • ABV: 11.5%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Quadrupel

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

The holiday season for 2014 is on the long edge of its wane, so here is a brew from Washington state’s Sound Brewery, ‘Entendez Nöel’, which means ‘listen to the Nöel, or caroling’, which is something that indeed may be done for the year.  Anyways, it’s a quadrupel style Belgian ale, so that certainly merits further investigation.

This 355ml bottle pours a clear, pale copper amber hue, with a single skinny finger of weakly foamy, soapy, and generally bubbly dirty white head, which leaves some minor low-lying microbial lace around the glass as it quickly bleeds away.

It smells of acrid yeast, sugary pale and caramel malt, fleshy pear – in the manner of Poire Williams – apple pie, and musty, earthy hops. The taste is bready, grainy caramel malt, a bit of saucy toffee, pear compote, apple turnover, still edgy Belgian yeast, syrupy sugar, a mildly strange green mustiness, and a sidling, probing booziness. The bubbles are fairly understated in their plainly coy renderings, the body a decent medium-full weight for the style, and as smooth as they wanna be, unless those alcohol esters come ‘a knockin’ on the door. It finishes on the sweet side, the caramelized apple/pear fruitiness, and more or less well-behaved hot booziness keeping things tight.

A pleasantly engaging Quad ale, which perhaps lacks the deeper subtleties of the Low Countries examples sprayed across the planet, but displays instead a rather brash new World sensibility, and for once it isn’t just via the hops. Strong, and challenging you to like it, is the impression I get here. So, ho ho ho, everybody, and thanks for a wild Yuletide ride through beerdom.

Brady White

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