Saturday, October 2, 2010

416. New Holland Beerhive Tripel

Another from New Holland’s High Gravity Series, this one with honey and ginger combined with the Belgian Tripel format. This puts our running New Holland total at five: we’ve weighed in on El Mole Ocho, Dragon’s Milk and Golden Cap Saison, plus the magical bonus beer, Envious. Don’t be envious of the bonus beer. We don’t want no hating here.

Beerhive pours a bright, clear, buttery burnished copper with red highlights. The nose is a combination of juiciness and creamy perfuminess with a touch of both honey and ginger in the background. Some light fruitiness emerges with warmth, along with smaller amounts of spiciness, while the head is a creamy tan color. While it reduces to a thin cover, it does lace the glass decently. Flavors start sweet, with candy and honey in the front before moving into slight spiciness in the middle. There is a nice ginger tang in the turn to the finish that merges well with the slight carbonation bite, and the ginger spiciness (as distinct from the spiciness in the middle) lingers lightly on the palate. Beerhive has a medium body with a bright, effervescent mouthfeel; there is a slight alcohol warming in the finish, although it is slightly masked by the ginger spiciness. An interesting beer, but not as nuanced as we would have liked; the nose was more impressive than the flavors in the body, which were a bit flat across the spectrum. The ginger is still the prevalent flavor at this point; while we enjoy ginger (and I especially do), a beer this big needs more complexity—a lot of the Belgian characteristics from the yeast seem to be absent in the body, although somewhat present in the nose. Maybe another year or two would help, but as is it is not super-exciting.

From the bottle: “Little John’s local bees create a wildflower-honey which lends a sweet, earthy complexity to this traditional style beer. A snap of ginger provides a refreshing finish.”

ABV: 8.47%
OG: 19° P


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