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Anchor Our Special Ale (2001 and earlier)



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RATINGS: 451   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
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Our Special Ale, a dark, rich, heavily spiced ale with a recipe that changes with each passing year. - The enticing ruby color is topped by a dark creamy head that emits both malty and spicy aromas with ginger being a prominent one. The full body is matched with complex dry and spicy flavors that produce a nice favorable combination before finishing on the dry side.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
maxwelldeux (3956) - Everett, Washington, USA - NOV 27, 2012
Draught. Pours a very dark brown with a moderate tan head. Nose is a little sweet with some malty notes to it. Feels very fizzy. Taste is a tad sour, actually, and has some caramel in it.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
DedicatedToFun (3360) - Santa Monica, California, USA - NOV 24, 2012
Did not like this beer, not sure of the high reviews, tasted like rotten old bubble gum. How does it have a 96 rating?

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 11/20
jookos (2900) - FINLAND - NOV 19, 2012
Ottle. Brown. Nose has dark maltyness. Gingerbread dough. Syrupy bread. Spicy. Body is medium. A bit dry. Spicy finish.

-- bb/h

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
BoltonDK (567) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - NOV 17, 2012
Bottle at Mandalay. Medium aroma with notes of, hay, smoke, soil. Clear dark brown color light brown foam. Dry taste, after taste of coffe and coco?? So so. Bolton Brew Rocks !!
Earlier Rating: 11/13/2012 Total Score: 3.5
Bottle at Mandalay. Medium aroma with notes of, hay, smoke, soil. Clear dark brown color light brown foam. Dry taste, after taste of coffe and coco?? So so. Bolton Brew Rocks !!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
J_man (749) - Tustin, California, USA - NOV 17, 2012
Anchor Christmas Ale (I like the sound of that better) changes every year and itís different than the first time I tried it. It was lighter and had a lot of spruce in it way back in the 90ís and it was radical for the time. This year (2012) itís a beautiful crystal clear brownish garnet with a tan head and interesting roasted malt, wood and vegetal aromas. Thereís a taste of something like sage or thyme in it thatís delicious. Light bodied yet it has a full roasted, chocolate malt flavor like a porter and a smokiness in the background. More spices that seem like cinnamon and nutmeg follow along with a woodiness and dryness thatís really nice. A little bit of vanilla seems to come through but the end effect is a light sweetness and dry woody cask flavors. Seems almost like an English style beer in the subtle complexities and flavors present. I got this as a single to see what it was like this year and Iíll be getting a 6 pack of this now!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
jcartamdg (2267) - Spring Hill, Florida, USA - AUG 29, 2012
Pours dark brown with no head. Aroma of holiday spices. Really tasty. Christmas spices, not bad, age ajad done this ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
Earlier Rating: 7/26/2012 Total Score: 3.5
Pours dark brown with no head. Aroma of holiday spices. Really tasty. Christmas spices, not bad, age ajad done this ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
tapthis (88) - Baytown, Texas, USA - JUL 30, 2012
First off, I am very particular about spiced beers (like this one) I thought that the spice was a bit much, not overdone, but i think they could have backed off a tad. I think of gingerbread when i smell these styles of beer, and this one is no exception

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
DoublEE (783) - South Euclid, Ohio, USA - JUL 29, 2012
This stuff is fantastic. Loads of flavour, lots of spices coming through and a tasty malt backbone that blends well. Surprisingly drinkable given the complexity. I wish I had a bottle as big as the one in the picture on BA!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 5/20
Onenote81 (1002) - Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA - APR 20, 2012
Vintage 1996. Awesome extra received from calise1122 (BA) in a trade awhile ago. Huge thanks for this very unique beer, Brett! Popped the cap, and spurt of carbonation fizzles out. Good sign. Poured into a pint glass, this pours a very thick, dark mahogany with a thin tan head on top. Some ruby shades to this foam. Retains weakly, and leaves little-to-no lace on the glass. Scents of old apples, prunes, figs, dates, leather, soy...you name it. This is crazy how much "flavor" is in the nose. The body still retains a good amount of depth and good carbonation bite, almost a little harsh. I wasnít expecting so much "bite" to this. I thought it would be mellow with no carbonation at all. Shows how much I know. Unfortunately, the flavor on this did not do it for me. I think this beer has gone past itís prime. At first sip, I get a wash of old mushy apples and slightly tart cherries. I liked that first sip. As I continue to drink though, this becomes a musty, dry, vinegar-y, dirt-flavored soy sauce. I thought this had characteristics of a good Old Ale, but it became a drain-pour. I hate to admit it, and I very RARELY pour out a beer, but I could not get past the third or fourth sip on this one. This may have been good a few years ago, but it has lost whatever good characteristics were still clinging for dear life long ago.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 8/20
justabeergeek (225) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 5, 2012
This beer is heavy on the spices and is very off-balanced as a result. I smell nothing but sweer molasses and the flavor is heavy on gingerbread and molasses. Not a balanced, nor a particularly mouthwatering beer. I will not drink again.

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