MaltOMeal (1092) - Land of Sugar, Texas, USA - AUG 16, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
magnum bottle opened at Houston BA Tasting. Pours a dark brown with a nice tan head. Nose is of spice and roasty malt. Taste is the same roasty malt and spice, but also has some nuttiness to it. Mouthfeel is medium-to-thin.
rudolf (2341) - Buffalo, New York, USA - APR 25, 2008
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle from Richard (Irishboy) as a bonus. Thanks! Sampled 4/25/08. Very deep brown body, soft tan head with nice lacing. Nose is strangely reminiscent of Chartreuse. Its very strongly herbal and spicy, bright and almost salty. Very interesting - Iím sure it didnít smell like this when it was released but I wish I had tried the 03 fresh so I could compare notes. Flavor is smoky, slightly vegetal and herbal. Not as spicy as the nose suggests but it does display that Chartreuse character. Caramel comes through in the end along with some pepperiness.
BlackDonald (1126) - Boise, Idaho, USA - APR 18, 2008
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
I donít know if itís just me, but I have never been crazy about this lineup of beers. Spicy, but not as spicy as in other vintages, this had a more pronounced vegetal quality all the way through, which made it almost undrinkable. Kind of has a musty fruitcake like malt body, that finishes quite dry.
hotstuff (4142) - Indiana, USA - MAR 11, 2008
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle from jsquire. Thanks, Jeff! Small tan head that mostly diminished, spotty amounts of lacing, opaque, no visible carbonation, and a dark brown hue. Nose was spicy, sweet, malty, and mildly hoppy. Ditto for the flavor with a dry finish. Smooth, dry mouthfeel and light in body. Quaffable, well balanced and worthy of a try.
tennisjoel (1180) - Rochester, Minnesota, USA - JAN 27, 2008
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle shared at a tasting that I hosted. Pour is red. Aroma is fruit and spices, namely nutmeg, cinnamon, and some hints of caramel in the background. Flavor is slightly bitter and even a bit vegetal. This is decent, Iím just not crazy about the finish.
Thanks Curt for letting us sample this from your cellar.
islay (1180) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JAN 27, 2008
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Small sample from 12 oz. bottle consumed at tennisjoelís tasting on 1-26-08. This was the first of ten beers that we tried. Nice, musty, spicy aroma with nutmeg, pear, and plum scents. Pours an effervescent, maroon / dark brown with an amber hue and a small amount of beige head. Dry and lemon-sour taste. Vanilla and apple juice flavors. Spicy, bitter finish. Light to medium body. Frothy in the palate. The 2003 Anchor Our Special Ale is not a bad beer, but I was hoping for more.
AmEricanbrew (5870) - Same Trailer, Different Park, Louisiana, USA - JAN 9, 2008
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
12 oz. bottle. Has a beautiful garnet hue with a tan colored head which fades quickly to a sheen. Reeks of cloves, ginger. Has a very smooth, full bodied texture. Taste is first of roasted malts followed by a spicy sweet mix of cinnamon, cloves, and bitter ginger to finish.
This bottling doesnít seem as spiced as previous years. Going to cellar a few and see what happens.Nov 2004
RSRIZZO (1855) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - DEC 2, 2007
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Had this beer on 12/5/2003. Aroma mild with tones of roasted malt. Color is a deep dark brown. Taste is roasted and mild. starting with medium body it goes down smooth with a hint of malt coming on. Finish is a mild roasted malt flavor backed by a citrusy spicy end. Overall its a great winter beer.
VikingHammer (506) - Lynnfield, Massachusetts, USA - NOV 14, 2007
3.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
Dark brown pour with a small light brown head. Big pumpkin aroma with a lot of spice. Acidic pumpkin with some funky spices that have a light to medium body. Dry finish with live carbonation.
FatPhil (9421) - Tallinn, ESTONIA - NOV 14, 2007
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: DEC 11, 2007 Keg (Kaunis Kampela, Helsinki) As "Christmas Ale"
Rich red, small tight head. Aromatic and spicy aroma, sweet rich malts, citrusy hops, and spicy too. Taste has it all as well. Full christmas pudding of spices. but not a characature.