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Beer – #1,098 – Small Gods – The Fall

Small Gods – The Fall. Occasionally a beer appears on the radar that seems quite outlandish and quite unusual that it demands and deserve more attention and inspection. So it is with this beer. A fig based Belgian Dubbel. Madness or Brilliance?

It has that kind of thing about it where I’m having a beer on a Sunday, something I get to do so rarely recently.

This can, like “Satan Satan Satan”, is similarly a work of art, and it comes with dark wax drip from the bottom up, it’s quite clever, and quite striking. However it doesn’t transport well and there are little pieces of wax in weird places now.

Sweet through the mid

Small Gods, The Fall, a 400ml can of beer with an ABV of  8.1% ABV, and it has abound 243 cal per 355ml serve size. This s i2.8 standard drinks in NZ.

Small Gods, The Fall, made in Auckland 🇳🇿 New Zealand, in the style that is of a Dubbel 

Sunday Beer!

Hurled from Heaven, they fell like lightning.

For 9 days and 9 nights they fell headlong through Chaos.

Vanquished rebel angels, their boasts broken and majesty brought low.

Beauty defiled as they descended from light to darkness.

A grim bottomless abyss made of shadow.

Hell at last, yawning, received them whole, and on them closed.

Satan’s rival kingdom forged.

The Fall is a Belgian Dubbel, a complex, malty traditional ale with notes of biscuit, toffee and dried fruit. This brewed with copious amounts of dried fig to reinforce the natural rich fruit character.

Sweet through the mid palate but finishing dry and clean to enhance the drinkability.

So, What could possibly go wrong?

Best consumed by plunging healing into the ghastly abyss….

On opening the can I got what I thought was more a hoppy ale type of aroma, but left a moment it cleared to that more familiar malty/sugary thing that you’d reasonably expect from Belgium Ale.

It pours quite lively and there’s a lovely head forming that in a trice disappears leaving a beer that looks lightly carbonated almost still in the glass, a lovely deep polished dark wood colour about it.

The aroma is familiar but light, it’s like the beer is a bit shy. It isn’t under carbonated, and it isn’t short on flavour.

This seems quite sweet, but that sweetness is over something that is less palatable and seemingly slightly sour. It’d be easy to be picky about this, in my enthusiasm I might have been expecting something a lot sweeter and fresher, whereas what is in the glass is a fairly sensible and solid Dubbel.

The Figs though, and I’m back there, despite saying I’d moved on, I’m not sure what they’re doing here, I get they’re here to add a rich natural flavour. There’s a world of difference between a dried Fig and a fresh one though.

I became sad as this for me lacked that promised sweetness and middle that I really enjoy in a Belgium Ale, there’s isn’t enough malt in this and its kept afloat by the aroma mostly. You can tell that my enthusiasm is waning as I get closer to finishing this.

You’t think it was all doom and gloom though and it isn’t anything of the sort. This is a nice Belgian Dubbel, it has great looks and initially pours with great enthusiasm, and comes with lovely aroma. Initially you think this is quite sweet but that doesn’t seem to have the legs for it, and there is then a gap where the maltiness you’re looking for is a bit absent.

But it is Sunday, and I’m having a beer, so it’s a bit of a win really.

The pdubyah-o-meter rates this as 8 of its things from the thing. I wanted this to be a really mouth filler, a circus and great exposition of craft or dark arts. I got a lovely beer and none of that other stuff. A really easy to drink beer that looks well and is as it should be. In context though, this is unusual beer in New Zealand and this is one of the better ones.

The double dip review

  • Where did I get it? The Fridge and Flagon, a BeerJerkNZ enterprise.
  • Am I enjoying it? It was a rollercoaster
  • Would I have another? I’m hoping that it is in a future subscription box, when I shall go again with great gusto
  • Would I share with a friend on a porch and set the world to rights? Given the rarity of the style amongst New Zealand brewers this is an easy yes. Given that this isn’t possibly the best you can buy in New Zealand it might be a good counterpoint to an imported similar style. Pretty sure it’d be generally a neck and neck race, there’s a reason these are unusual, and that those who are good at it are the market leaders.

Music for this:  I started with David Bowie (if you watched the video) but I got waylaid by Leon Bridges on Spotify, a slower and mellow bit of music.


The Belgian Dubbel, also known as Trappist Dubbel, is a deep reddish-copper, moderately strong, malty, complex ale with rich malty flavors, dark or dried fruit esters, and light alcohol blended together in a malty presentation that still finishes fairly dry. Should not be as malty as a bock and should not have crystal malt-type sweetness. Similar in strength and balance as a Belgian Blonde Ale, but with a richer malt and ester profile. Less strong and intense as a Belgian Dark Strong Ale


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