Mikkeller series seem to be quite a phenomenon in the world of beer aficionados. Monk's Elixer is his homage to Belgian Trappist darks.
"This is the most beer-snobbiest thing you've ever done", says Fiona, shaking her head.
OK, so it's a bit "niche of niche", but this is a special occasion: my 240th tasting. For a blog that initially set a goal of 40 beers a few years ago, things have evolved quite a bit.
The taste of this unique beer starts off with puffy bubbles of very fine carbonation, initially coming across like a St Bernardus Prior 8 in mouthfeel. A treacly smell turns into a range of flavours: dates, raisins, raw honey, blood, iron, biscuit... Then it finishes off with a bitter and burnt aftertaste that lasts and lasts.
But perhaps the most interesting note we picked up, and which Bob identified, was sesame cracker -- you know, the sticky, baked things made of pressed together sesame seeds. It runs through the overall set of tastes like a thread holding it all together. Yum.
This "gypsy brewer" sure can make beer. Though with a nickname like that, I guess he's not going to be brewing too much in France any time soon.