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Anchor Our Special Ale (2004)



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RATINGS: 430   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.63   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
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This is the thirtieth special ale from the brewers at Anchor. It is available from early November to mid January. The ale's recipe is different every year, but the intent with which we offer it remains the same: joy and celebration of the newness of life. In ancient times, trees symbolized the winter solstice, when the earth with its seasons appears born anew.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
GG (2039) - NorCal, California, USA - JAN 16, 2008
Not much else to add to this years verion. Itís still very tasty but some of the spicy character have mellowed a bit and the malts are more prominent. It has the usual suspects in the flavor and aroma profile. Thankfully the ginger has been toned down, but they left out the spruce character. I also didnít pick up any chocolate on the flavor, but it seemed a bit more raisiny too me. A nice beer though.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Tmoney99 (10595) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JAN 13, 2008
Bottle found at Village Pub in Covington, KY. Poured dark reddish brown color with an average frothy light brown head that lasted with good lacing. Good complex sweet spicy aroma. Medium body with a sticky texture. Good sweet dark fruit spicy flavor with an average sweet finish of moderate duration. Complex good brew.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
AmEricanbrew (5800) - Same Trailer, Different Park, Louisiana, USA - JAN 9, 2008
12 oz. bottle. Pours a beautiful clear garnet hue with a tan head. Sweet fruity, spicy smell - strong cloves. Medium bodied with nice carbonation. Malty sweet taste with cloves, caramel, and bananas. A nice fresh Pac NW hop burp finishes off this stand out brew. One of the best Christmas beers out there.Nov 2004

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
mgermani (1000) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JAN 3, 2008
Bottle of 2004 vintage, provided by Capflu (thanks for the trade!)

What a distinctive beer - where to begin? Pours a beautiful near-black amber with a lovely deep brown head wich great retention and lovely lacing. Aroma is unbelievable. Wow - reminds me of Pannepot. Rich and sweet, notes of graham cracker, toasted oatmeal cookie... sweet and pungent. Taste is very complex - fig, chocolate malt, slightly dry finish, definitely some bittering hops, light astringency. The fig really shines through, I find, and itís a bit watery. Wonderful creamy but slightly thin body with good carbonation. What an interesting beer, I wish we could get it year-round. And what a great opportunity, to enjoy the 2004 vintage nearly 8 years later. Thanks again to Capflu!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
nimbleprop (4847) - SouthWest, Washington, Washington DC, USA - DEC 18, 2007
2004 vintage came out of the cellar in the magnum sized bottle. Head was slightly off white, thick and foamy and lasted throughout the glass. The body was oily looking, nearly opaque deep dark brown and looked a lot more developed than the 2007 vintage. Aroma was yeast, holiday spice, malt and alcohol. Flavor had mellowed nicely with the holiday spice and biscuit flavors and had added a nice chocolate tone to it. Became heavy and oily on the tongue and warmed the cheeks. Really developed body, flavor, finish and aroma in the cellar for 3 years. Wish I had more of this to keep around.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 14/20
Bier brauen (246) - Bremerton, Washington, USA - DEC 15, 2007
2004 edition. Nice aroma but thin mouthfeel and bitter taste. Not as big as the inviting seasonal aroma would promise.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
irishpenguin13 (33) - Lady Lake, Florida, USA - DEC 11, 2007
ah yes, the 2004. , in 2004 it was great (as always), 3 years later i had this one again and it was more than great. i was wondering if the cap seal would hold after this long. needless to say, it did. it had a beautiful head and all the spiciness to back it up. the best part was how the flavors came out more after being cellared for 3 years. yum yum.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
RSRIZZO (1852) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - DEC 2, 2007
Had this beer on 11/20/2004. Aroma is roasted and sweet. Color is a deep dark amber with a tight thin head. Taste bright and clean with a mild roasted flavor. Starting with light/medium body it goes down crisp and light. The finish comes on with a mild roasted flavor backed by a smooth bitterness that leaves you with a clean feel. I like this beer, its crisp, clean and easy drinking, but its not what a good winter brew should be. Overall its just not rich and bold enough for a winter brew. Looking back it seems this is the mildest they have made it and it also likes like 2002 was the best so far.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
FatPhil (9308) - Tallinn, ESTONIA - OCT 31, 2007
Keg (Gallows Bird, Espoo, Winter Ales 2004) Spicey aroma. Heavily roasted burnt taste - fruity like christmas pudding, heavy on raisins.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
emacgee (4010) - Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA - SEP 30, 2007
Had in 2006. Oage did not treat this well. Most of the flavors had oxidized and died out. Definitely spiced but again not too distinguishable.

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