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Anchor Our Special Ale (2001 and earlier)



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RATINGS: 457   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
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 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Ungstrup (34696) - Citizen of the universe, DENMARK - MAR 14, 2005
[Vintage 2001, BBE Oct-03, Sampled March 2005] A brown beer with a huge dense brown head. The aroma is sweet and spicy containing notes of wood, musk, lavender, and cocoa. The flavor is sweet and very spicy with notes of pine (though not nearly as much as in the newer versions), wood, lavender, and musk. The mouthfeel is a little flat.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Papsoe (25063) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - MAR 15, 2005
(Bottle 35,5 cl) Vintage 2001. Thick, almost tar-like black beer with a generous brown porter-like head. When I had this the first time I wasn’t impressed. But either the beer or my tastebuds has changed! Extremely full, reminiscent of a Stout with it’s characteristic burned aroma in good balance with the more fruity notes from the ale-yeast. Spicy - but from what I do not know. Apparently Anchor changes the recipe every year. Surprising that this beer doesn’t contain more alcohol - it appears stronger.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 1/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
omhper (23728) - Tyresö, SWEDEN - JAN 25, 2002
Very dark brown. Nutmeg aroma. Malty, spicy and and rather sweet. Medium bitterness. I find this years version to be more balanced than previous years.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
anders37 (23376) - Malmö, SWEDEN - DEC 23, 2007
1998 bottle. Pours a dark amber color with a small off-white head. Spicy malty aroma with some hints of chocolate and dark fruit. Sweet malty spicy ginger flavor with some dark fruit hints. Long malty spicy finish.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 8/20
madmitch76 (22493) - , Essex, ENGLAND - JAN 15, 2011
2nd February 2008
1994 botltle! Very dark brown ale. Doesn’t smell great! Not too bad in the mouth. Porterish with a slighlty spicy finish. Okay but clearly past it’s best.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Travlr (21680) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - AUG 21, 2014
Draft at Paradiso Dupont. Clear maroon color, thick beige head. Seems over spiced to me, with lots of residual sugar

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
fiulijn (19385) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - AUG 9, 2002
UPDATED: NOV 24, 2003 Dark amber color. Strong malt aroma, caramel. Malt mouthfeel, very strong caramel (the strongest of all the beers I have ever tasted) just supported by some bitterness (not enough for me). Ordinary palate.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
rlgk (18323) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - NOV 24, 2003
Bottle, 2003 version. Dark amber, ok head. Has a clearly floral aroma. Flavor is floral as well, and sweetish. Has a sour touch in the finish.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 10/20
saxo (16989) - Højbjerg, Aarhus, DENMARK - FEB 9, 2006
Bottle. Dark reddish beer with nice tan head. Taste is spicy and very christmas like - but just not that much to my liking.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 2/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 7/20
brokensail (16057) - Dublin, California, USA - MAY 25, 2010
1999 Vintage. A: The pour is a slightly hazed rusted amber color with a minimal off-white head on top. S: The nose is inviting and quite typical for the Anchor Christmas beers. Plenty of spice: cinnamon and clove for the most part. There are also some nice fruits in the form of figs and raisins. T: There’s something very "off" about this beer. A slightly meaty/fishy taste which overpowers the other flavors for the most part. A bit of fruit and sugar is all that saves this one. M: The body is medium with a fairly decent level of carbonation. D: It’s unfortunate that this one seems to have taken a turn for the worst. I don’t quite know what I would suggest to do with this beer.

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