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RATINGS: 335   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.15   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 45   EST. CALORIES: 237   ABV: 7.9%
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Like FDR’s Depression-Era Radio Addresses, which were like a kick in the butt and a hug at the same time, our Fireside Chat is a subtle twist on the traditional seasonal brew. We begin with a rich, dark, English-style ale and then we improvise with spices until we know we have a beer worth sharing with the nation. Celebrating the right to be original.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
DrinkEmUpJones (1062) - Georgia, USA - DEC 5, 2010
Brown almost black with a red hue and off-white lacing. Light nose with notes of coffee and cedar. Medium bodied palate with smokey notes. Not the greatest cold weather beer but it will get the job done.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
tokyogoat (1503) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 3, 2010
Poured a deep amber/brown. Nose was heavy with holiday spicing, lots of clove with a hint of brown sugar and cheer. Really one of the most bad ass can labels I have ever seen. Unfortunately the beer inside isnt up to par with it. There was a weird acrid off flavor I got from it, almost like burnt plastic. the spicing was spot on, and the beer was good, but whatever that chemically tasting flavor I got kind of ruined it for me.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Acetobacter (816) - Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 3, 2010
Enjoyed from a 12oz can in an English pint glass. The beer pours a very dark brown to almost black color, with a mild off-white head. The nose shows English yeast esters, high crystal malt notes, and baking spices. The first and third come through fairly prevalently in the palate, as does an assertive bitterness. The flavors are pleasant and seasonally appropriate, but the beer seems to lack from a true sense of originality. In many ways, it tastes of many other similar holiday/winter beers; not unpleasant, but not supremely enjoyable, either. Carbonation is nicely calibrated. The finish leaves lingering notes of fruits, slightly burnt caramel, and bitterness. Overall, a beautiful can and nice idea, but unrevolutionary.

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 2/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 6/20
brokensail (10916) - Orange County, California, USA - DEC 1, 2010
A: The pour is almost black cherry in color with a creamy off-white head. S: Smells like sour cherries and prunes with some metal, smoke, and cereal. There’s a bit of a booze-soaked fruit cake thing going on a well. T: Like the nose, lots of sour/spoiled fruit juices, particularly cherries, prunes, and raisins. A bit of an olive flavor as well as metal and cheerios. And just for good measure, some alcohol and brown sugar. M: The body and carbonation is both medium. D: Another loser from 21A. This was bad in just about every way.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
killjoy966 (677) - Washington, USA - NOV 30, 2010
6-pack from Chuck’s. When they say it’s a "spiced winter ale" they’re not kidding. Smells like vegetables. Tastes all right (I drank all six) but I felt confused. Can’t really nail what’s in it. Also tastes heavily medicinal. Literally Grandpa’s cough syrup. Probably won’t get again.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 1/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 4/20
Davetopay (53) - Leesburg, Virginia, USA - NOV 30, 2010
I am being generous when I say that this isn’t fit for hobos. Horrible sour, funk that doesn’t belong, bad balance, adjuncts(!?!?), and feet. There may have been a winter warmer in the plan for this stuff, but it wasn’t in the can. Oh yeah, don’t let me forget the metal. It had enough metal aftertaste to make me think it was a Sam Adams product. BREW FAIL.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
roder60 (1284) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 29, 2010
Pours a medium brown with nice layer of frothy offwhite head. Aroma is caramel sweetness with some tart cherry notes. Flavor just is not balanced well. Starts off like it should taste similar to a malty sweeter scotch ale, caramel and brown sugar dominate early, followed by some spice notes and a very very tart sour cherry flavor followed by some floral hops. Overall, not a fan.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
bhensonb (11054) - Woodland, California, USA - NOV 28, 2010
Can. Pours dark brown with a bubbly tan head. Aromas of dark malt and cinnamon? Near med body with moderate carb. Flavor is sort of chocolate and cinnamon with some other spicing. It’s a bit gummy. Everything I can remember from Cold Spring is short on ingredients, and this is no exception. The malt’s too thin to support the spice.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
beerguy101 (5282) - Newark, California, USA - NOV 28, 2010
Sampled on 11/27/2010. This spice ale pours a medium to dark drown color from a 12oz can. Medium sized white foamy head with decent lacing and good retention. The aroma is dark fruity, sweet and spicy. A medium bodied spiced ale. The malts are fruity and sweet. The hops are herbal and earthy. Nice carbonation. Lots of spice flavors, kind of generic holiday spices, but I am unable to pick out any individual spices. Wish there was a little more malt sweetness to go with the spices. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly sweet.

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 7/20
Beerlando (3342) - Orlando, Florida, USA - NOV 26, 2010
12 oz. can. The pour yields a translucent, dark chestnut to mahogany colored body with a small, frothy, khaki colored head. Settling as a thin, swirly film with a bubbly edge, the head gives way to jagged diagonal flares and short spikes of sticky lace. The nose puts me off from the start, absolutely booming with a hodgepodge of dark winter spices, showing everything from sweet cardamom and cinnamon to bitter coriander and celery salt, along with everything in between. Caramelized, buttery brown sugar comprises the malt base, suggesting also some baked raisin bread. Flavors are strikingly bitter from all the coriander, nutmeg, and allspice, as sickeningly sweet baked pumpkin and heavy brown sugars offer the opposite, but equally offensive counterpoint. On the palate, a medium body is rife with lively, prickly carbonation that leads towards a sticky, sugar-laden finish. Ugh....gross. This beer is the poster child for obtrusive, unchecked, irresponsible spice application. I could honestly only manage a few ounces.

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