MarkSachon (553) - Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 13, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2013 vintage. 12 oz bottle from Giant Eagle on Route 8 in Pittsburgh. Red hues and a small head on the first sip. Some scents of spice and exotics. Could have been better lacking a few things common to this type.
jkwood04 (3748) - Connecticut, USA - JAN 3, 2014
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
2013 12oz bottle in a tulip. Pours amber with a beige head. Aroma of pale and caramel malts, some floral and citrusy hops, light spices, and light dough. Flavor the same. Average texture. Not a bad beer at all.
jkwalking05 (3633) - Arlington, Texas, USA - DEC 31, 2013
2.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 8/20
(Backlog) 12 oz botle. Amber in color with a small beige head, and clear. Aroma is carmel, brown sugar, and dried fruits. Taste is watered down, caramel, and soapy.
matthewjk (887) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 30, 2013
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
An altogether unremarkable, but drinkable ale. I wish I had anything else to say about this, but I donít.
mansquito (3255) - Nueva York, New York, USA - DEC 29, 2013
2.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Heavy Woods, Brooklyn tap ($6): Pours light amber with a white head. Mild amount of caramel malt, and some floral hops. Taste is similar. Lightly bitter. A wee bit sweet, but mostly forgettable.
k0mpsa (1068) - Jšrvenpšš, FINLAND - DEC 27, 2013
3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Almost clear reddish brown color, light brown head. Aroma is roasty, malts and spices. Quite nice taste, little roasty, spices, some hops.
5000 (6180) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - DEC 26, 2013
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Bottle: † Deep and dark amber, strong ruby hue, large frothy head, soft beige, fairly nice lacing. † Sweaty aroma of grains and stale bread. † Not all that appealing on the nose. † Very grainy and mealy on the tongue. † Moderate sweetness. † Some biscuit notes bring up the backside. † Body and mouthfeel are moderate. † This one is husky, a bit rough, grainy, not all that smooth. † What about this says Christmas to the folks at Abita I have no clue, as its not spicy. † A grainy Amber Ale = Christmas? † Oye Vay!
Campy877 (166) - Michigan, USA - DEC 24, 2013
2.2 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 7/20
Bottle. Was hoping for a bunch if Christmas flavors but found a pretty average amber ale. Pours a dark chestnut color with a medium head. But then does not deliver on the taste. Disappointing.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
majorchaz (24) - Augusta, Georgia, USA - DEC 20, 2013
3 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
An OK íChristmas Aleí. Though I didnít really get íChristmasí out of it. To be fair they do say on the bottle, that they brew a different Dark Ale each holiday season.
This brew does pour a dark orange-copper, and is very murky, with good head retention and stippling. The smell is somewhat earthy, with some subtle hops in the background. The taste is what threw me off, as it did not hit me as íChristmasí. It would probably be better labeled as íAnnual Dark Aleí, since it was missing the spice that I would normally associate with something labeled as a Christmas beer. Overall, a perfectly drinkable beer, but not what I was hoping for.
Chad9976 (1127) - Albany, New York, USA - DEC 18, 2013
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
I poured a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. It had a best before date of 3/7/14 and cost $2.40 ($0.20 per ounce).
Appearance: Beautiful shade of copper/magenta. Clear with plenty of carbonation visible. Pours to a medium-sized, white, frothy head which laces and retains well.
Smell: Resiny/piney hops. A touch of coffee.
Taste: I havenít had Abita Christmas Ale since 2009. The brewery makes a point of saying the recipe for this beer changes every year, but they donít say if itís the same base recipe with a few tweaks (a la Anchor Christmas Ale), or if they brew to an entirely different style. Though that goes to show the power of persuasion - some say this is an amber, others say itís a brown ale. Frankly, I could go either way, though Iíll probably guess brown ale since thatís what itís been before.
If this is a brown ale, then itís quite hoppy for the style. Surprisingly strong, dank, resiny hops persist throughout the palette, but especially on the finish. Thereís a general earthy quality to the taste here - hints of rustic tree bark and pine needles. Not much in the way of specific malty flavors, other than to say it has a solid malt foundation. I would not describe it as sweet, though there is an interesting flavor of coffee on the finish that seems to bridge the gap between the hops and malts. While I wouldnít describe the beer as being particularly Christmas-y, since thereís no spices, itís more interesting than your usual brown ale.
Drinkability: While the taste to Abita Christmas Ale was surprisingly nice, its delivery was equally impressive. The mouthfeel is medium all around - flavorful yes, but nothing intense. On the thinner side with noticeably crisp effervescence that finishes rather clean considering how bitter the taste is. Iím not sure of the ABV, though most sources seem to indicate itís 5.5%, which seems applicable since itís a flavorful beer, but nowhere near a heavy one.