Archbeer.com

Archbeer.com is an independent informal site for beer enthusiasts, providing information on specific beer brands tested by guitarist Archaon of the Norwegian black metal band 1349.

Ratings

The beers reviewed are rated on a scale ranging from 1 to 6 based on the following parameters:

  • Color
  • Consistency/texture
  • Fragrance
  • Elements of taste and aftertaste
  1. Disgusting (rather drink water)
  2. Poor/boring (somewhat drinkable, but nothing more than that)
  3. Ok (meets expectations)
  4. Good (above average and high quality in terms of taste)
  5. Splendid (top notch; a joy to consume every drop)
  6. Out-of-body experience (absolutely supreme taste and presentation)

Limited edition


DARK NIGHT 2021

A massive celebration

…and so; on the 9th day of October, it all went dark on Norwegian shores.

This evening was one for souls to be bewitched by southern magic. The long-anticipated event took place at Nøgne Ø’s facilities in Grimstad, where approximately 100 participants reveled in some of the best beers from Norway. Prior to the nightly event, the brewpub Nødingen filled up with thirsty attendants ready to quench a variety of styles- including some nice rarities that is even nationally sought after. In addition to delicious brews as “God Jul Whisky” (2012) and the incredible “Eternal Rest” (2017), there was many a fresh beer to be enjoyed by them lucky ones who had turned up.

There was some great food serving from the local restaurant Apotekergaarden, courtesy of the chef Kamil. This came in the form of both Chili Con Carnè, as well as a vegetarian option, Chili Sin Carnè- great choices to be enjoyed midway in this splendid day. Such heavyweight champions as many of the beers served tonight is definitely best consumed on non-empty stomachs.

The clock ticks 9pm- and eventually the time had come for what we were all waiting for: The world première of none other beers than the mighty Dark Horizon tag-team! Consisting of the “ordinary” (can one call it such a thing?) version, limited to 15.000 bottles worldwide- lest we forget the heavier version: Dark Horizon 7 Barrel Aged, which has spent up to three years on Cognac, Aquavit & Whiskey-barrels. This to ensure a massive, bold taste unlike much of its similar peers out there. (The latter one being limited to only 7500 bottles worldwide).

So, how was it drinking?

 

DH7 vs. the BA one?

In my opinion, the DH7 was preferred slightly above the BA version- which wasn’t too surprising, considering the fact that I’m a sweet-tooth of dimensions when it comes to Russian imperial stouts. However, there was many similarities (obviously)- heavy on the coffee, chocolate and nuances of caramel. Stunningly delicious! A perfect addition to the DH series, smooth but bold mouthfeel, suitable medium-to-heavy body. Perfection in a bottle right here. In addition, the BA version on the other hand, had distinctive traces of bourbon, and perhaps the most noticeable as of now: the Aquavit-barrels. However- and this might be the most interesting part of it: I am looking tremendously forward to see how the BA version evolves with the next couple of years… Wouldn’t be surprised if this transcends waaay beyond the non-BA one. Regardless: One of course has to try’em both, should one get the chance.


 


Rockin’ the night out

But the fun didn’t end here. The stage was set for some seriously heavy stoner-rock to accompany them heavy beers tonight. Headliners Kal-El (amazing job, guys!) rocked the second floor’s venue, with support from fellow rockers Borderline Case. Just what the doc-of-hedonism prescribed!

 

 

 

A bar was also set up, with many a flavour for them advanced palates present. Ranging from old classics such as Imperial Stout, Brun, Sunturnbrew and Porter, a selection of different vintages was amongst the options. Spanning from 2011 to 2016, A neat surprise was also to find the incredible Quadrupel and Imperial Rye Porter, as well as a few Dark Horizon 2, a few of DH5 and DH6. With so much good stuff, there’s barely time to blend in some hoppy/milder ones, but some rays of light shone bright too.

All in all- a massive celebration of this great masterpiece of a proud, bold beer.

Absolutely superb guys! Congratulations.


This outrageously exciting masterpiece of a Barley wine has been on the bucket list as a “must try before I die”-beer. And boy! It was indeed worth it…

Being a tribute to a famous brewer known for solid works himself, namely Gabe Fletcher from Anchorage brewing outta Alaska, this exclusive beverage sheds even more pride on a name already associated with the highest quality.

From the esthetic bottle, to the tar-like creation that pours with a minimal head on top.

On the nose, we find a wide specter of elements: Figs, plum, wood and raisins. Very deep, the barrel shines through very clearly in this complex mix. A compote of noticeably dark fruits with heat making its appearance, even before tasting.

As far as taste goes: This is a real thick one, bursting with different angles. The body is solid, the burnt bread mixed with confectionary and fruity notes emphasized, and of course a suitably proper heat for adults. This is no easy quiery beer, but a delicatessen for Barleywine lovers! As a matter of fact: Heavenly taste, with the powers of hell inside. Yeah, that’s it- that’s more than fair to say. It’s a good thing I cannot get this every day… Cause I’d drown, willingly.

Hats off to the masters @sideprojectbrewing!

Of course being a dream long time coming, it is FINALLY time to get to try this spectacularly rarity. Being one of the most sought after beers in the world (if not THE most sought after), it was difficult enough to get hold of one (Thx Aaron!) meaning that the joy of finally getting to taste it is even greater. And as if that wasn’t enough, a friend had gotten hold of the previous year’s edition. How crazy wouldn’t it be to taste’em besides eachother? Let’s do it!

 

KBBS 2019

So thick in the glass… Oily as f@!%, leaving more than just wine legs. As a matter of fact, more like a whole wall of thick, oily layers… this is just floating chocolate.

Nose: Incredible coffee, followed by bourbon, caramel and chocolate. Outstanding, unrealisticly strong maple coating, with a hint of bacon in the back… longest lasting taste- EVER! Violentry raging maple on palate with time. On the other side of the ring, we find heavy caramel, draped in a layer of sirupy burnt wood/oak.

Still, velvety finish, playing all instruments of the whole goddamn spectre! In other words: An oral orchestra.

 

KBBS (2020)

 

 

 

A little less developed body? Without a doubt, the same delicious base… Out-of-this-world! Not as thick as it’s predecessor, but still Super oily. North is distinct caramel, lots of sweetness. Cleaner, in a sense…  if that description can be applied. Absolutely wonderful and astonishing!

Less heavy bodied, with just purity in aboundance, pure caramel. Delicious velvety maple syrup here too, as expected. Slight note of coffee in the bottom, albeit no alcohol traces as such. Just overwhelmingly smooth caramel & chocolate pralines of the most exclusive sort. Out-of-body experience! Drinkable confectionery.

I’d do this again any day… if luck/fate/the-powers-be would direct another chance in my direction.

 

 

Photo: M.K. Burheim

Every time I crack a bottle of this kind, I must admit it fills me with a great deal of excitement. Having had several of Anchorage’s stunning brews before, I do know that the bar is placed high- and tonight‘s thick’n oily beverage is about to prove that it is no exception.

Clocking in on a massive 15.5 ABV, it sure holds a powerful body enough for a huge complexity. Nose is BIG, with features of figs, overripe dark fruit, leather, burnt wood, hints of tobacco, all backed by a veil of delicious chocolate. So, more importantly: What does it taste like?

Sweet, chocolaty, nutty. Spice (cinnamon?) Lots of nuts! Sooo amazing! Silky smooth veils uncovers fruity layers in the middle section, before it slowly fades over in Bourbon notes, Ona foundation of warmth underneath. A light acidity is then defeated by the sweet sword of cocoa, laying any opposing elements to eternal rest. Absolutely superb, top noch, sublime… No wonder that many an adjective comes to mind in order to justify this work of art.

 

Photo: M.K. Burheim

Gosh… for a moment there, I thought I’d never see this one in my life. (Thx Andreas!) Super-limited edition from back in the days when craft beer had quite a different position than today, this is quite something.

I’ve been excited about this one for ages, and today is the day… For those who have tried  the regular Tokyo: This is quite something else.

 

First off: Incredible that this beautiful beast is 12 years old! Lots of aromas, highly intact. Massive oakbarrel nose, soaked in whisky. Supreme carbonisation, full and suiting body. I can best describe this experience like this: lightly subtle sweet introduction, followed by the main ingredient being smokey flavour, which overlaps back & forth with sour mash whiskey.

At the same time: Heavy body, without providing any kind of disturbance to the close-to-perfect balance. Delicious & fullbodied with lots of smooth sweetness that evolves into an exciting acidity. To round things off, this masterpiece is superseded by a megasmoked outro. This 12year old is quite simply astonishing.

Beautiful pouring in the glass, nice brownish red head. Very dark brown colour in glass. Nose is heavily oak, figs, vinous. At the moment the world is cheering for the next American president, so perfect moment to crack this piece of art from Nøgne Ø. But: Nevermind the politics, here’s beer.

 

 

Taste is suitably carbonated. Delicately acidity, wallowing over in sweet dried fruit, a super-complex taste-bomb! Small sips keeps new flavours coming up: a hint of liquorice, brown candysugars, dark berries as well as a layer of chocolate in the back. Supreme quad-like strong ale from the Norwegian masters.

Congratulations!

Photos: M.K. & I. Burheim

 

In the pandemic-ridden summer days of 2020, we see Corona putting a stop to most events planned to take place. However, On a late Saturday evening in Oslo, me and four friends gathered for a special happening that I believe hasn’t happened before (at least I have never seen anything like it?): The mission being to complete the entire line of the Abstract series from Brewdog.

Having gathered quite a bit of them each of us throughout times, we got together to crack them all at once. Yes, writing this the day after… (and it is a terrible day as one can imagine!) i’d forgotten how it feels with such a headache- so I suppose I’ll take it as a bonus reminder. But more importantly: I did take notes! So here they follow- enjoy!

 

 

 

 

AB:01- 3/6
Yellowbrownish colour. Nose is close to BW/quad, subtle notes of caramel. Ripe apples, super-ripe. Quite delicious as a matter of fact, contrary to what I expected.

 

 

 

 

 

AB:02- 1/6

Dark brown colour. Nose: Dark berries/fruity notes. Taste is somehow mouldy, with a straaange bitterness(?)- almost amonia-like sting of old hops. «Not cool», to quote Rick & Morty.

 

 

AB:03- 2/6
Brown & murky looks. Quite sour nose w/raspberries. Stings a bit. Acidity and old basement. It’s not as bad as nr 2…

 

 

 

 

AB:04- 4/6

Seems most promising of the lot so far! Dark, stout is what we have here. Chocolaty notes and chili traces are intact, definite best so far. Withstanding the test of time, this one- which (as a curiosity) is the one that the whole DOG series were based on.

 

 

AB:05- 5/6
Dark as night is what we like for a stout to be. This being no exeption. Belgian Imp stout, this one has the total picture: sweetness, Choc, nutty & fruity. Smooth as f**k!

 

 

 

 

AB:06-3/6
This one I’ve had once before- terrible! So, what now? Black IPA… Sounds awesome. Nose is hoppy and foresty, with clear traces of ageing. Much better than anticipated, thought this would be no good.

 

 

 

AB:07- 3/6
Scotch ale, with liquorice notes. Tastewise, It’s a bit old’ish, but smooth & better than expected.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:08- 3/6

Thin. Supposed to be a stout? Caramellish nose. Sweetness in taste. Very mature.

 

 

 

 

 

AB:09- 4/6
Good taste for quite old beer. Vineous, oaky and boozy taste.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:10- 3/6
Brown ale aged on Malaga barrels. Accompanied by a dessert wine of Malaga kind, it kinda weakens a bit- seems like lost what was there once. Not bad tasting,

 

 

 

 

AB:11- 2/6
BW. quite weak though. Not bad tasting, but bot good either

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:12- 2/6 Belgian strong ale, strenght in raspberries, both in terms of aroma and taste.

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:13- 2/6 sourish stout. Ageing doesn’t seem to have done this beer well, according to my taste.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:14- 3/6 Weissbock. Not usually my fave category in the world of beers, still I’ve had some real good ones before. This one however, is past its prime it seems. Old beerbasement aroma. There’s some sweetness in the taste. Wort-like, but not in a bad way.

 

 

 

AB:15- 4/6 Great! Sweet, bold (still beautiful)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:16- 3/6 Very vineous, but at the same time also quite light-bodied. Long aftertaste In this one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:17- 4/6 sweet nose. Candy chocolate combined with distinct coffee features.

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:18- 3/6 Farmhouse. blend of saisons, aged in rum barrels. Raisins. old. Sour, but sweet undernotes.

 

 

 

 

 


AB:19- 3/6 sweet as well as acidic notes. Quite good balance. Good stuff

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:20- 3/6 a little mouldy, but great. Sweet, old but good. Much better than what I remembered from last time I had it actually.

 

 

 

 

AB:21- 3/6

I have no idea anymore what beer type we’re talking. Sweet, a little acidic, and nice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:22- 4/6
Raw? Nose could fool me at this point. (“Really? You think??) Taste be like “Y’all, this is some sweet good shit.”

 

 

 

 

 

AB:23- 4/6
Sweet & fruity. Lost 4 further words… 3 left.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:24- 3/6 great. A little BBQ, smoky-like.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB:25- 5/6 Wow! A barley wine that just strikes out like that! This is it. Fresh, aged and rounded off in them edges. Fantastic stuff guys!

 

 

 

 


AB:26- 3/6 spiced, heat, stout-like. Funny & exiting twist on a stout, and it does actually work.

 

 

 

 

 

 


AB:27- 4/6 Bourbon notes and sweetness provides for a good stout. Also: Stoked that this the last one! (Phew) There were several good ones ones in this run, this being one of them. Great finalé! ?

 

 

 

Last but not least: A shoutout to those who were kind enough to trade/sell contribution beers with us, in order for this to take place: Lasse L, David H, Thomas S, Kryzsiek M and Svein Åge B.

Cheers!

 

This one has been lying around for a good while… Saving the best for the last-thingy. Being familiar with these guys from before, I’m expecting tons of deliciousness and enormous fruitiness, all entangled inside this blood red contents.

If you’re into mead, this is the thing for you- from Norway. Nose revealing massive amounts of cherries, a vineous yet sweet experience out of the ordinary. As for the taste, it can best be described as imperial- no, divine… or “next level” at the very least. This is the grand stuff, and really delivers what it promises: Cherry delight goodness. Sweet ‘n fruity, thick/full body and dangerously seductive. One almost can’t believe that it is as strong as it is, but be aware: Hidden weapons are present here. This is powerful stuff in all meanings of the word possible. Amazing.


Photo: D. Brochs

As one would with such a hyped item, this beer has been looked forward to consuming a long time. Being one of the pretty difficult ones to get hold off out there, expectations are high when pouring this deep murky yellow perfection in the gloss. Aromas of citric fruits, piney notes and mango strikes the nose instantly, all the way from can into glass. Powerful indeed!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Murky-looking, perfectly carbonated, fresh albeit broad and bold, this masterpiece first teases the palate with a swift sweet brush, before all hell breaks loose- cause that is indeed what happens here. I mean sure, yeah- it’s an incredible double IPA, but the grip that the stingy hop has on the tastebuds cannot be described along anything else than stormy, yet still evolving. It’s one of the best examples of how this style’s mastery can be: Complex, all over the place, multi-dimensional and violent to the palate… Completely insane.

Looong after the swig, it keeps on stinging the back of my tongue, like a swarm of miniature hop-bees, ravaging. And several minutes after, it’s slowly fading out, with a sweet fruity  touch closing. This was actually worth the wait. Supreme.

 

Photo: M. K. Burheim

Oh heavenly, gorgeous bloodred beverage- what holdst thou in store? Being vaguely familiar with Baghaven through some of their works from before, I’m definetely exited for this one. A vanilla kriek? Sounds terrific to me, love those tastes. And besides the lushious burgundy looks, the nose reveals distinct cherry notes herein. But clearly also sweet, kind vanilla caresses the nostrils, together with subtle, exotic spices. So: What does it taste?

Oh divine, vineous, easygoing smooth beverage! Thou hast me enchanted! High levels of carbonisation, thin/mediumbodied presentation, sweet-teasing intro. Then a superb acidic middle of sour berries follows. Long-lasting, dramatic deliciousness. No alcohol traces at all, just a lot of fruityness going on, culminating in a very subtle cinnamon ending.

Absolutely stunning beer- a must-taste for kriek lovers.

 

Photo: M. K. Burheim

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