Mikkeller Santa’s Little Helper 2012

MikkellerSanta_bttl11% ABV
Purchased at Taylor’s Market ($14.99/25.4 oz. bottle) and poured into tulip glasses.

This “Belgian ale brewed with spices” pours a prune-y dark brown with a medium-sized, brown sugar head, and an amazing nose of chocolate-covered raisins, caramel apples, and other dark fruits.  On the tongue, chocolate and fruit flavors are balanced against perfectly understated spices on the finish, with a surprisingly light mouthfeel for a sweetness-forward 11-percenter.  Plums, figs, apples, nuts, and caramel all make an appearance, and although the spices are difficult to discern due to their subtlety, I think detected ginger and a touch of cinnamon.  Perfectly balanced with a remarkably crisp finish, Santa’s Little Helper 2012 is easily one of the best brews I have sampled this year.

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