Saturday, April 23, 2011

Utö III and Utö Dark Lager

This time it's time to talk about a Finnish beer. In a way at least. Stallhagen ( is a brewery situated on an autonomous island in South-West of Finland. The beers are two limited edition beers from the brewery made especially for the Utö lighthouse ( The lighhouse however is not a part of Åland islands. Sorry no lecture of history here, mostly because I don't know about it and also because it's already written on the web pages. Anyway, getting this beer is again something I'm in great gratitude to mister J-M. I got these twins as my 30 th birthday present from him and his wife. A huge thanks for you both for again supporting my early stage of alcoholism! ;) For real, it's (talking about the experience, as a beer, not the alcoholism) something I most probably would had missed without your kind generosity.

The bottles are traditional Finnish style 0,33 liters as the other products I've tried from the brewery, but the labeling is unique. Labels include, as it happens, Utö Lighthouse! The name and the color of the beer has been communicated also by the background coloring of the lighthouse. In the Dark lager you can see the night sky on the background and on the Utö III there's a clear blue sky. Brilliant!

Enough about the non-beer related stuff I say! Let's get it on, as Big John McCarthy usually lets us know that we've had enough BS. So we start with the lighter nmbr III. The type of the beer is lager and this beer is a perfect representative for the coloring of lager. The nice golden color is crystal clear and the foam is typically low and quite fast fading. Scent is as well typical to Finnish tradition with dry malt and maybe a hint of bitterness of hops used.

Velvety and creamy on mouth the beer gives a pleasant distinction to the "rivals" from other Finnish breweries. Bitter sweet as in the song from Verve would be a good way to describe the head of the taste. Quickly decapitated (fading head) the taste changes to the more familiar light malty and soft finish. Aftertaste imitates the earlier findings of the palate. Nothing special there but the surprisingly refreshing head. To sum this one up still I think that the rarity of the beer makes it a pleasant experience! I think this would be the perfect way to start the night after a long day at work in the summer time so J-M, keep your promise and book us a trip to Utö. We're gonna go get some more of this! ;)

Next up is the darker brother, Dark lager. I seriously had tho try to find what the dark in the name means when it suddenly hit me: the malts have a distinctive roasting on them making at least the malts darker.
 Ok, there is a ale-like reddish coloring on this one too but still I would not go to the dark because of the color of the beer. Then again Red lager would had been a bit lame name and there wouldn' had been a possibility to link the name of the beer to the color of the Baltic sky. Enough again with the

As mentioned earlier the color is close to a 15 yo whisky that has been stored in a sherry cask. The scent is somewhat roasted and sweet candy like malt, with a small portion fried sugar. Taste starts with a sweet head that turns into a malty and bit roasted yet sweet malts with a light fruity hops. After taste gives a light malty taste and a pleasant light roast on top. If you really stretch your taste buds you can find also some honey on the malt and citric on the hops on the body of the beer. The diversity of the tastes is quite unique for this light beer. Well developing taste!

It's nice to notice that there are still ways to differentiate from the main stream even in this genre of beers. And now there's at least one trip I know I'll have to start waiting for in the summer! ;)

What you will be getting in the "near" future for example is...

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