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RATINGS: 1824   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.54   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
This is our special ale from the brewers at Anchor. It is sold only 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. Since ancient times, trees have symbolized the winter solstice when the earth, with its seasons appears born anew.

Editor’s Note: due to the significant similarity in style and strength from year to year (despite potential differences in the exact spice blend), this beer is no longer separated by vintage.


2.7
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 10/20
Vac (2445) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 8, 2006
Pours wtih a red-brown body topped by a thin head with some lacing. It’s sour with a slight underlying sweetness with a note of cranberries and a slight roastiness. Full bodied and dry wtih a deep warmth.

3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
badnewsbeers (2313) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - JAN 8, 2006
i dont know what happened to my beer...i can say, it is lucky to get a 3.1 in my books...aroma AND flavor are quite indistinct due to a watered-down approach by anchor....spices, malts, caramels....nothing else....very bland and somewhat tasteless...maybe it was a disaster having this beer after my last five (fullers london porter, lion stout, thomas hardy’s ale, de dolle stille nacht, and rogue hazelnut nectar)

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
thegreenrooster (3189) - St.louis, Missouri, USA - JAN 6, 2006
Pour is a almost black with a tan head. Aroma is of cloves and pepper. Flavor also has notes of cloves and pepper but with a brown sugar/dark chocolate mix. As always i say this taste just like a Christmas tree. Very tasty and smooth. Its does not get much better in the winter to have one of Anchor’s winter in your glass. This beer can do no wrong from year to year.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
kramer (4892) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 6, 2006
12 oz bottle. Pours a dark mahogany, firm 1cm light brown head that fades to a thin film. Sweet spicy aroma, very malty with lots of nutmeg and herbs. Hugely spiced malty flavor, with a long sweet herbed finish. I can pick out nutmeg and cinnamon for sure, but there’s alot more going on in there. Medium bodied with moderate carbonation, slightly cloying and mouth coating. This probably gets some extra points all around for being a holiday classic and a favorite of mine. Any way you cut it though, this is a solid beer by anyones standards.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
turbo (1271) - Arizona, USA - JAN 3, 2006
Almost black with a thick, creamy chocolate head and sticky lacing. Aroma is spice and malt with a roasty spice flavorand smooth spice finish.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
leitrim65 (402) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JAN 2, 2006
Brownish/black body with large tan head. Coffee nose with a touch of chocolate and alcohol. Light - medium bodied. Coffee flavors are balanced by elements of cinamon, clove, nutmeg, roasted nuts, and finishes with a gentle lasting hop bitterness.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Bockyhorsey (2610) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - JAN 2, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 1, 2007 Aroma has spice and herb notes to it. Black body with decent tan head. Has a medium body feel to it with spices and vegetable flavors thoughout the beer. Vegetable mild sweetness on the palate. A decent sipping beer.
2006 Bottle. Aroma was a decent miz of spice, malt and some fruit. Brown body with tan head. Flavor was spice up front with a creamy roasty texture from middle to finish. Thought this was like a porter with out being over sweet. Good beer.
7 - 3 - 8 - 4 - 16 = 3.8

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
awaisanen (1304) - Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, USA - JAN 2, 2006
UPDATED: JUL 12, 2006 From 12oz Bottle.Very dark brown body with a thick, burned malty head. Complex aroma with sugary fruits, gingerbread, and pumpkin pie spice. Flavors of raisin, nutmeg, and clove are most present along with the roasted malts. A nice, pleasantly long finish of roasted malt follows with a touch of mellow hops. Overall, a good unique seasonal ale, although not quite as interesting in spice dimensions as the 2004 in a side-by-side comparison.

2.7
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
Rastacouere (6125) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 2, 2006
Immediately familiar spice/malt nose bears a solid caramel background to the ginger/cinnamon/cloves/nutmeg. Not as expressive as I remember still. Burgundy-Brown, clear around the edges body, forming a regular beige head that slowly diminishes. Always has this interesting apparent complexity of aromas, though I can’t say if it comes up to the sum of its parts. Spice derived bitterness brings no dryness in if perhaps diminishing the sweet feel. Really dull loose mouthfeel is a catastrophe, proposing pointy carbonation that accentuates the spices disparateness rather than bringing them together thus making the finish chaotic (ginger gum!!) and severely fatiguing grapey sweetness, kinda syrupy. Christmasy in its sticky pine gum spiciness. I usually enjoy OSA a lot more, but it is as if the attenuation is not as advanced for now and I doubt time could chime in enough to compensate.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
ivan9856 (187) - Arlington, Virginia, USA - JAN 2, 2006
I sampled a 12 oz. bottle. The body is mahogany with a large, rocky tan head. There is excellent lacing. Rich malt, yeast, and spices like nutmeg and gingerbread, are featured in the nose. The backbone of dark roasted malt quickly yields to a complex midpalate with a variety of flavors such as coffee, dark chocolate and licorice. The aforementioned spice spectrum, roasted nuts and anticipated pine needle essence are also revealed The finish is moderately hopped, and fairly long lasting. A very good seasonal ale.


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