Dr. M nr. 23 – Camilla

Camilla by Dr. M, Belgian Blond, 5.8% ABV, 17 IBU.

Dr. M nr 23 - Camilla

Dr. M nr 23 – Camilla

I’ve been cursed with a some bad bottles the last few times I’ve rated Dr. M beers, let’s see if this one is clean!

Dr. M BLAHBLAHBLAH BLONDEIt pours an opaque, cloudy medium amber to orange body with a huge, off-white, creamy fairly long-lasting head that sticks to the glass.

Strong aroma of Belgian yeast and lots of light fruits, I get both cidery apples and notes of pear. It’s a sweet smell, with gentle spicy hints for the sake of balance.

The flavour is strong and is dominated by the yeast, but the fruity notes are also very evident, so is a sprinkle of black pepper. It’s a bit sharp with the usual solventy hints that I tend to pick up in homebrews, but they are not overwhelming. The taste is somewhat sweeter than most blondes, and the bitterness is very gentle. There is some dryness in the finish, but this is far from a bone dry beer.

Conclusion: a decent blonde, I like the massive fruitiness. I’m still no fan of solvent, even though it’s reasonably subtle in this brew. 

Aroma:      7/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      6/10
Palate:     3/5
Overall:    10/20
Ratebeer score: 3.0/5.0

 

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Dr. M nr. 11 – Jula 2013

Jula 2013 by Dr. M, Saison/Belgian Ale, 7.2% ABV, 90 IBU.

This very untraditional christmas beer comes in two versions: a regular and one with a little gnome on the label. I can’t quite remember what the difference between the two versions is, but we’ll find that out soon enough.

IMG_3549

Dr. M nr. 11 – Jula 2013. The spiced version (a.k.a. gnomed version) to the left, the regular version to the right.

Both beers pour a slightly hazy, medium amber body. They seem to be quite lively carbonated, the gnomed version even more so, and the lightly tanned head is bigger and more frothy. Both heads are long-lived and lace the glasses well. The aroma and taste of the two beers are so different that I’ll have to rate them separately. First the regular version:

The aroma is strong, and it has lovely notes of Belgian yeast, or rather saison yeast I suppose, citrus, pale malts and lots of sweet fruits with hints of overripe strawberries. It’s a pleasant mix of crispness and sweetness.

IMG_3548

The labels have all the gory detail, but the additions to the gnomed version isn’t revealed.

There is very little sweetness in the taste and the finish is heavy bitter. Totally out of style perhaps, but fun. The flavours are moderate, it feels like the bitterness drowns most of the elements that should be present according to the aroma. I get yeast, fruits in the back and some alcohol. Even further in the back I get resin, pine needles and bitter grapefruit, vague hints of anise and traces of honey in the late aftertaste.

As expected the body is quite light, the texture is bone dry and the carbonation is lively.

The gnomed version is a totally different creature all together! The aroma is very strong, far stronger than for the regular version, but most of the notes found in the regular version are in the gnomed version efficiently masked by a massive wall of herbs, anise seeds, cloves and liquorice. There is nothing saison-ish about this one. But still an interesting aroma, I wonder what Dr. M has actually added to this brew!

The strong flavours follow the aroma, with lots of herbs, anise, spices (again especially cloves). There is really lots of herbs in this one. Lots and lots. This is like drinking a Jägermeister. Not very christmassy, but definitely an unusual and entertaining experiment! The alcohol feels better hidden than in the regular version, it also feels a bit less bitter, less dry and there are more sweetness.

Conclusion: The regular version is a quite nice beer, but there is too much bitterness for the gentle flavours. Maybe more late hops should have been used to back up the bitter taste? On the other hand, that would move the beer even further away from it’s saison origin. Finally it’s a bit too alcoholic. The gnomed version is a fun one, but it’s also quite demanding, and the herbal overdose is simply a bit too much. Neither of the beers are very more-ish, and it wasn’t a great loss to partially rate these two beers Polden Arnesen style. 

Regular version:

Aroma:      7/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      6/10
Palate:     3/5
Overall:    11/20
Ratebeer score: 3.1/5.0

Gnomed version:

Aroma:      6/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      6/10
Palate:     3/5
Overall:    10/20
Ratebeer score: 2.9/5.0

Dr. M nr. 7 – Sommer

Sommer by Dr. M., Belgian Ale, 6.4% ABV, 32 IBU.

Pours a lovely golden, clear body with a huge head, this one is obviously highly carbonated. Good lacing. Long lived head that ends up as a layer that is thin enough to be called a film. 

Dr. M nr. 7 - Sommer. Enjoyed 8 months after bottling.

Dr. M nr. 7 – Sommer. Enjoyed 8 months after bottling.

The aroma is very strong. Even through a 10 cm layer of quite dense, creamy head I get lovely crisp notes of Belgian yeast, light fruits and a light floral touch.

The taste is light sweet with a moderate bitter finish. The flavours follow the aroma, in addition I get some alcohol, maybe a bit too much, but the alcohol is quite clean and it’s fitting for the style, this is almost like a Duvel light.

The beer is quite lively carbonated, the texture is dry and the body is medium. An incredibly crisp and refreshing mouthfeel!

Conclusion: I deeply regret that I didn’t have this in the garden this summer, this must be the perfect summer beer! Crisp, refreshing with a gentle bite from the alcohol and the hops. 

Aroma:      7/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      7/10
Palate:     4/5
Overall:    13/20
Ratebeer score: 3.5/5.0

Dr. M nr. 6 – Lys Vår

Lys Vår by Dr M, Belgian Ale, 6.8% ABV, 45 IBU.

Lys Vår is of course not light in colour at all, this is after all a Dr. M brew! The body is quite cloudy and has a medium amber to orange colour. The head is large, off-white and rather long-lasting, and settles as a fully lasting layer. A good amount of foam is left on my glass.

lysvaar

Dr. M nr. 6 – Lys vår, enjoyed 7 months after bottling.

The aroma is strong, very sweet and fruity and absolutely inviting. I get lots of berries, especially overripe strawberries and raspberries, maybe some fermented sour notes as well. Also a good deal of Belgian yeast.

The taste is moderate sweet,  moderate bitter and yes, there are some sour hints in the aftertaste along with the bitterness. I don’t know it it’s supposed to be like this or if it is very lightly infected, but I still like the sour touch. The flavours are not very strong, but the same pleasant notes of well ripe red berries as I found in the aroma are present in the flavour profile as well. The same goes for the Belgian yeast, and finally there are notes of not that well integrated alcohol.

The mouthfeel is very pleasant, especially the creamy texture is lovely. The body is medium and the carbonation is moderate.

Conclusion: one of the best brews I’ve had from Dr. M. The berries gone slightly sour are refreshing and exciting, and the nice mouthfeel makes this one even more drinkable.

Aroma:      7/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      7/10
Palate:     4/5
Overall:    13/20
Ratebeer score: 3.5/5.0

Dr. M nr. 3 – Remanso

Remanso by Dr. M, Belgian Ale, 6.6% ABV, 68 IBU.

Dr. M nr. 3 Remanso

Dr. M nr. 3 Remanso

Dr. M warned me about his 3rd creation, this one didn’t turn out the way he had planned, and he considers it a failure. With this in mind I guess the outcome of this rating will have one of two possible outcomes: either this biased rater will slaughter the beer, or I’m pleasantly surprised and give it a good rating. Only one way to find out, so let’s pop the cap!

It pours a dark brown, cloudy body, a bit dirty looking. The head is large, quite creamy with an eggnog-ish colour. It stays big for some time, before it is reduced to a partially covering film in addition to some bubbles along the walls of the glass.

Fermented with a mix of saison and Belgian ale yeast.

Fermented with a mix of saison and Belgian ale yeast.

The aroma is crisp, dry and quite simple: I get mostly spices, a pleasant yeasty touch and dust. There is hardly any fruity notes in here.  It is noticeable that the brewer has used saison yeast (in addition to belgian ale yeast).

The aroma may be crisp and dry, but the taste is very far from that. This is definitely very sweet stuff, and with a FG of 1.030(!) that is to be expected. This is a seriously under-attenuated beer, but it actually doesn’t feel as flawed as it sounds. The label claims the beer has a IBU of 68, but to me the bitterness in the finish feels light. I guess the massive sugary sweetness is masking most of the bitterness. Even if the aroma is dominated by saison-like notes this is not the case for the flavour profile. The main ingredients here are very sweet caramel and ditto fruits. Also some dark dried (and sweet!) fruits in the finish. There is some spiciness, but not the saison-kind of spices. I also get some roasted notes in the back, almost a touch of coffee.

This sugary brew is of course full bodied with an oily to syrupy texture. The carbonation is soft. For a .5 L bottle it’s almost a bit too much, but I think it works. I have no idea what beer style this is supposed to be (neither has Dr. M, so I guess I’m forgiven). An black saison-ish abbey dubbel with the body of a heavy russian imperial stout? If the ABV had been cranked up to at least 10%, this would have been the first brew of a brand new and exciting beer style!

Conclusion: too sweet and a bit unfocused, but the pleasant aroma, nice flavours and solid moutfeel makes this a decent brew.

Aroma:      6/10
Appearance: 3/5
Taste:      6/10
Palate:     4/5
Overall:    12/20
Ratebeer score: 3.1/5.0