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Beer Advent Calendar Window 19 - Blitzen

I swear I'm trying. I'm still drinking all my Advent beers in time, no matter the struggle, but the times for posts is eluding me. I'm afriad it's all just so damn social at the minute. It'd probably be nice to spend some time staring at my beautifully decorated living room and watching a Christmas film at last, but instead I am out celebrating. It's great Christmas, but it is crippingly exhausting.

Blue Mountain Brewery and Barrel House are an 8-year-old Virginia based brewery. I know relatively nothing about them, but their Christmas beer Blitzen is welcomingly part of this Beer Advent Calendar.. It is the brewry's take on a French-Belgian Biere de Noel and is presented beautifully in corked 750ml bottle.

Surprisingly for the style, the beer label encourages you to enjoy this beer before the best before date presented on the cork of July 2014. I thought that a 7% dark beer such as this may actually have got better with age so let's find out.

"Santa is real. And he's the most wonderful person in the world." 

Blue Mountain Brewery - Blitzen Biere de Noel 7%

Murky deep bramble brown, there's a very heady aroma. Oh yes, plums, sherry, damp woodland, burnt sugar, cinder toffee and prunes. It is one of the greatest beers I've ever smelt. The taste is initially a little disappointing and I refer back to that cork. This isn't ageing as one might hope. The flavour is a touch tart from the off, like unripened plums. It's sharp on the tongue,biting almost but in some ways a touch like a blackberry fruit wine. It makes me think of a beer that's aged too long, but equally I'm transported to picked fresh blackberries from the trees with my grandad as a child. That nostalgia taste makes me enjoy the beer more. Once it mellows, the other fruity flavours and a nice port-like burn begin to develop. It's warming and always emotive of winter berries. Pictures cutting into a fresh, warm cherry pie comes to mind once the nostalgia has left. The tongue tastes it long after the rest of the mouth has forgotten. It wasn't at all what I was expecting, and judging by that wonderful nose this definitely would have been much better fresher. Yet, there's still something uniquely enjoyable about this.

Mince Pie Pairing Rating: 7/10

Best Paired With: A fresh version of this beer I imagine


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