NickVega (154) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - AUG 19, 2007
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Perfect. I have had every year since I can remember. Usually in bottle and on tap. Also -- at Stuffed Sandwiches in CA you can usually try different years (aged) side by side. Wish I had it everyday.
hopsaddict (6) - USA - AUG 16, 2007 does not count
4.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
This beer brought back fond holiday memories with its nutmeg and vanilla rich nose/taste. Its has a regal appearance in a glass -- not the darkest beer, but the dark, thick head is certainly intriguing. Much lace is left on the inside of the glass. I recommend letting it warm up some from fridge temperature as the alcohol gives a warm, cheery compliment to the flavor as you reach the end of the beer and it has warmed up some.
Gregis (1281) - Stilwell, Kansas, USA - AUG 10, 2007
2.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 5/20
Bottle of the 2006 vintage. If simply being "complex" made a beer great, this would be one of the greats. I, however, have a difficult time espousing the complexities of a beer that I didnít enjoy drinking. I actually opted to pour the remainder of this one out to move onto another beer. It looks nice: a ruby-brown with a large, creamy, tan head. It smells quite nice: sweet roasted malt, gingerbread, allspice, and other minty/spicy notes. It reminds me much of a scented candle that my wife would burn around the holidays. The mouthfeel and flavor, however, left me wishing that Iíd just stopped at the pre-drinking phase of the rating. Medium-bodied and oily it finishes dry/astringent and bitter. The flavor is unique, but itís certainly not my cup of tea. Dark roasted malt, black tea and an astringent, plastic soapiness that tastes like Iíve just popped a handful of potpourri in my mouth. Not a pleasant experience; this is an example of a beer that can receive a higher rating than my overall impression simply because it looks and smells nicely. I have no desire to try this one again.
natedoggkc (164) - Overland Park, Kansas, USA - AUG 1, 2007
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2006 bottle. Poured a really nice dark brown/red with a big tan head. Aroma is malty, spiced, and some fruit. Taste is roasted, dark chocolate, and a slight fruit. This is a nice winter beer. Too bad I had it in the summer but it was still good.
SamuraiArtist (292) - portland, Oregon, USA - JUL 22, 2007
3.3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draft: Pours dark dark brown with a big white foamy head. Aromas of chocolate, malt and spruce. Flavor is slightly chocolatey but not roasty, subtle but noticeable spices. A little bitterness at the finish. Perhaps some minty like Northern Brewer hops.
ElGaucho56 (394) - USA - JUL 20, 2007
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: DEC 2, 2007 2006 variety. Pours a opaque black with discernible brown/red facets, slight head. Xmas spices noticeable in all stages, on the nose, palate, and finish. Nutmeg, cinnamon, maybe ginger?, accompany medium body and hop bitterness, though no flavor, in the finish. Good stuff for the holidays.
2007 vintage seems even better balanced, rich and complex spices in great balance with sprucy hops. Delicious.
thenick (766) - North Bellmore, New York, USA - JUL 18, 2007
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a deep brown to almost black with a lacy, tan head. Aroma is largely of nutmeg, with slight cinnamon characteristics as well. Taste is heavily nutmeg, though the beer becomes more complex as it travels across your tongue. I caught some vanilla, chocolate, and a slight citrus/hoppy characteristic as well. An excellent beer, a perfectly heavy companion while sitting next to a fire on a cold winterís day.
gunhaver (1030) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JUL 11, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUN 5, 2008 2006. Some fresh aromas, albeit a bit muted, including apple, chocolate, citrus. Pours lovely into the glass; dark brown, nice two fingers of head. Taste is light, with some vanilla, citrus, chocolate. Has a tiny tart bite at the end. Good beer.
2005 bottle, opened Feb/08. Pours black, but not pitch black. Red highlights. Very fluffy, comfy-looking tan head. Nice lacing. Ginger, coriander, zest, and chocolate in the nose. Very interesting. Malts, raisin, ginger, brown sugar, caramel, zest, molasses. Very smooth body, watery finish. Well-balanced. Enjoyed this more than í06.
Padron4KM (800) - Chandler, Arizona, USA - JUL 7, 2007
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Dark brown with a tan head. clumps of lace
Aroma is interesting and complex, roasty, chocolate, liquorice, prune, spice.
Flavor is along the same lines, but the liquorice stands out more, with a little vanilla in the finish.
Interesting beer, but the heavy liquorice makes it hard for me to drink more than one.
adrian910ss (2565) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 6, 2007
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
2006 vintage. Pours a dark brown with red tints and a medium beige head. Xmas spicy aroma with hints of dark berries, dark bread, figs and black licorice. Taste is malty with hints of dark cherries, faint chocolate, black licorice and light xmas spices. Not bad, but nothing special either.