This is the other Norwegian beer I bought. They had a huge number of beers, all emblazoned with the Scandinavian letter “Ø.” Most of the regular styles were accounted for, and there was even a beer that was a collaboration with a Japanese brewer. I ended up going with this #100, a double IPA (so said the guy at the store; BA says barleywine), and was pleasantly surprised to discover that it is a limited run beer that has already been retired.
This IPA seems to be heavy on the bittering hops and light on the aroma hops. It works really well – there is intense bitterness, but some other aromas come through. I’m not quite sure what they are using, but I’d be willing to guess cinnamon or nutmeg, which might also help reinforce the bitterness of the hops. After I poured the second half of the bottle, the flavors were a lot stronger – a bunch of yeast and stuff from the bottom got mixed up; the beer is so thick that it never fully resettled. The bottle does say “upasteurisert” and “ufiltrert,” which I’m assuming means unpasteurized and unfiltered.
I wonder how travel affected this beer. The Haand beer seemed to be a US-export beer that had been reimported into Japan. This bottle has the original Norwegian labeling. Also, I might have let it warm up slightly before putting it in my toilet closet cellar. Still, this is a unique beer; the coloring, hop spectrum and interesting aromas are great. I think Nøgne Ø is all about spicing their beers – they have another that uses juniper berries – so I’ll have to check out their other styles.