For a long time now I have wanted to try a beer by Mikkeller, putting in a beer order I finally decided to buy myself one. Settling on the Black Hole red wine edition seemed like the way to go, I like red wines and the idea of a stout infused with the flavour was appealing, so what was my first experience like?
The first thing worth noting about Mikkeller Black Hole is the look, the beer itself is a dark thick black, holding it up to the light it is completely opaque – much deserving of its name. The head has a reddish hue over a deep brown – I would guess that the base beer is pretty impressive even without the red wine barrel ageing. It pours thick, there are beers out there which are often described as thick – but Black Hole really does take the award as thickest beer I have poured. Overall I am impressed with the look of this beer.
The nose is smokey with some overtones of the red wine from the barrel ageing, the initial flavour is a rich oaky smoke, the smoke pervades the beer flavours but breaking through are red wine fruitiness, fruit cake and chocolate, this fades leaving a slightly sweet alcoholic flavour on the palate.
It is often the case that an experience which is heavily built up to is a little disappointing, rarely does it live up to the hype or expectation – my first Mikkeller was not the case. This beer is superb, I was a little apprehensive when I first poured it as it looked very dark and I was worried that it would be one dimensional i.e. dark and strong. How wrong could I be with my first impression? Mikkeller Black Hole is surprisingly complex with overtones and undertones, the flavour weaves from the heady wine flavours to the deep dark oak smoke flavours with grace.
In terms of look, Mikkeller Black Hole is quite simply the most epic beer I have ever poured, the thick blackness of it with dark frothy head with a hint of red, not avoiding the cliché the beer literally drinks light – it makes Guinness look positively watery.
Mikkeller Black Hole is on my list of superb beers, the red wine barrel aged edition has some amazing fruity flavours imparted from the red wine barrels, I think I may go out of my way to try the other versions of this beer and see how they fare with their different ageing barrels. So instead of sating my thirst for trying Mikkeller this has spurred me on to try even more, if this beer is not already on your beer “bucket list” then it really needs adding.