26 December 2008

The 2008 Knights of the Beer Roundtable Beer of the Year

To arrive at our candidates for the 2008 Knights of the Beer Roundtable Beer of the Year, we took a look back at all the beers reviewed during our our Roundtable sessions in 2008. In some cases, not all the Knights attended, but their familiarity with a reviewed beer allowed them to place it in their rankings.

This isn't science - far from it, actually - as it's possible that we may have decided that we like a beer more or less since the roundtable has happened. In any case, looking back, we've decided that these beers left us with the fondest of memories.

And our fondest memory of them all?


You might be saying to yourself "Go figure, they picked something bottled in 2007. How am I going to get any of that?" Well, there still might be some around if you know where to look. This is a $15+ bottle of beer, which means it usually doesn't fly of store shelves. If you're fortunate, your local beer retailer just might have a bottle. We picked up a bottle in Illinois just last month.

Can't find the 2007? Don't fret - this beer is a yearly release, and the 2008 edition (which we'll be reviewing is on store shelves right now. Is it the exact same beer? Probably not. But Mikkeller hasn't let us down yet - so it's well worth investigating.

We contacted Mikkel with the news:
I'm happy to hear you have voted Santas 07 the best beer of 2008.
From the early start I have created beers for people like you guys - the ones that really care a lot about what they are drinking and I always try and go all the way to give new beer experiences.
Santas is a dark strong belgian ale which is a rather new style to me so being able to brew your favorite beer of 2008 with this style is truly amazing!

Thanks a lot!

Thank you, Mikkel.

Our reviews of Santa's Little Helper 2007 came from our 80's Mikkeller Marathon post, which will explain the references below (posted May 16, 2008):

Santa's Little Helper 2007. Dark brown color. Nose reminiscent of bourbon and coffee. Superb dark fruit flavor, with notes of apple, cherry, and bourbon. An exquisite beer, which was well-liked by the group. One of the best beers we've reviewed, in my opinion. Musical analog: The Clash. The Only Band That Mattered was love at first listen for me. This beer was love at first sip. 4.95 mugs.


Santa's Little Helper 2007 - Dark brown with a tan light head. Tastes sweet, but not alcoholic, which could lead to some trouble at 11% ABV. Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure - "EXCELLENT!" 4.50 Mugs

Santa’s Little Helper: While sampling this, I imagined that I was drinking a Cherry Coke (which made its national debut in 1985) and scotch. It was spicy with whiskey flavors but sweet with cherry and caramel flavors. It is sure to brighten any dysfunctional family holiday gathering. I’m sure that Nicole Bradford wished she had a stash of this syrupy beer hidden in her room from 1987 through 1990. It certainly would have made tolerating her “Two Dads” more bearable year round. What was Judge Margaret Wilbur thinking?!? 4.67 Mugs

Matt E:
Santa’s Little Helper – This had an interesting combination of flavors and, surprisingly given the slate so far, none of them was hops. Cherries, apple cider, and whiskey abound, but there was nary a mote of hops to be found. Generally, I like hops in my beers. This time their absence made me appreciate everything else all the more. You don’t have to see or hear Vern to realize that he’s the perfect foil for Ernest P. Worrell. The fact that he’s invisible and mute allows us to appreciate the physical and character driven comedy of Jim Varney. I should know, I’ve seen every Ernest movie ever made. Betcha didn’t know that Ernest went to Africa or joined the Army…Didja?! 4.30 mugs

Individual lists:

Matt R.
1. Three Floyds Dark Lord
2. Deschutes The Dissident
3. Troegs Troegenator Doublebock
Honorable Mention: Allagash Four

1. Mikkeller Santa's Little Helper '07
2. Three Floyds Dark Lord
3. Struise Pannepot
Honorable mention: Rodenbach Grand Cru

1. Oskar Blues Gordon
2. Santa's Little Helper
3. Darklord
Honorable mention: Pannepot, Beer Geek Breakfast

1. Mikkeller To: From:
2. Rodenbach Grand Cru
3. Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron
Honorable mention to Struise Pannepot
Not-just-your-average-beer-blog award to Upland Six-way Lambic

1. Mikkeller To: From:
2. Troegs Troegenator Dopplebock
3. Brookyln Black Chocolate Stout

1. Mikkeller Santa's Little Helper '07
2. Struise Pannepot
3. Mikkeller Beer Geek Breakfast
Honorable mention: Oskar Blues Old Chub

1. Mikkeller Santa's Little Helper '07
2. Three Floyds Alpha Kong
3. Struise Pannepot

1. Brugge Tripel de Ripple
2. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot 2000
3. Deschutes The Dissident

1. Mikkeller Santa's Little Helper
2. Oskar Blues Old Chub
3. Three Floyds Dark Lord
most honorable mention indeed: Brugge Tripel de Ripple

Matt E.
1. Mikkeller Santa's Little Helper
2. Brewer's Art Green Peppercorn Trippel
3. Aecht Schlenkerla Fastenbier

1 comment:

  1. Chris is one smart, smart boy.

    Come by the Brasserie Chris and I'll show you why.