rgrep (156) - Wellington, NEW ZEALAND - MAY 27, 2006
3 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
Thanks to beer_ledgend for this one. Pours black with a light brown head. Iíve probably held on to this bottle for a bit too long as the aroma is barely there but I can still detect some toasty malt, a touch of cinnamon and tarry notes. The body is thinner than expected and drops off quickly without lingering. It has a spicy sweetness, some apple and a little astringency in the finish.
bhensonb (13622) - Woodland, California, USA - MAY 26, 2006
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Hints of spice, tar and chocolate. Deep ruby color(under halogen). Malty, hoppy flavor with hints of creosote (tiny hints). Nice mouthfeel, not too thin. Aged well over the past few months, but perhaps this is where the tarry notes came from. Really it is quite tasty. Leaves the mouth with a dark, spicey, sort of astringent feeling. Canít wait for 2006.
after4ever (7361) - Brier, Washington, USA - MAY 22, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JUN 12, 2006 12-oz bottle. Pours a deep piano-key ebony with a dense, substantial tan head that falls to lace within a couple of minutes. Definite soft fragrance of squash and some cinnamon. Creamy, pie-dough mouthfeel, with that spicy pumpkin coming through. Big roasty finish. Hops are there just enough to steady the flavor, rather than contrast or enhance it. Really a beautiful way to spend a winter evening...or, well, count down the last couple days before Memorial Day (put ice cubes in your pockets if you really need that frosty nip). Another Anchor triumph.
patrick767 (3918) - fort wayne, Indiana, USA - MAY 13, 2006
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
bottle - I tried this one far too late in the season (May), but it has a great Xmas aroma that brings to mind evergreen and spice. It pours dark brown with a big, tan head. The flavor is very spicey with loads of malt and some mild hops thatís more noticeable in the finish. The medium body is just about right for this ale. It could stand to be a bit more intensely hopped and have a little more body, but this is a very nice brew.
starfireming (309) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - MAY 11, 2006
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Huge tan head(unchilled), lovely nearly opaque colour with hints of chestnut. Smells quite spicy, rather moldy. Gentle palate, intense flavours of basement and holly wreaths. Thick mouthfeel.
JFGrind (1972) - Glenside, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 30, 2006
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Iíve been slowly consuming my case of OSA 2005 over the past five months and thought an appropiate time to rate it. After opening the bottle Iím greeted by a gingerbread nose, murky cola brown body and a thin tan head. Medium body with cocoa, licorice, and bitter sweet flavors. Reminded me of a spiced Old English Ale. I think Anchor Brewing is producing more quaffable OSAís, Iím only half way through my 2005 case so I should be cellaring it for a few years.
bfeldmann (1049) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - APR 28, 2006
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
"Poured a dar dark brown almost black color with nice size tan head. Aroma was of spices and caramel malts and chocolate. Flavor was roast and spices there was some woody flavor in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel was a little thinier then i expected. "
PhillyBeer2112 (2711) - Oviedo, Florida, USA - APR 27, 2006
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: NOV 22, 2014 Update for the 2014 40th Anniversary edition. Its been years since Iíve last had this beer. Spices are light, nose is worty, caramel malt, hazelnuts, maybe a wee bit of nutmeg or ginger. A little smoky. Still that nice full malty palate, balanced and fluffy. No change to the numbers.
Once again a very nice beer, but my experience tells me this is really something to age around 5 years. Pours a nice brown-garnet with a fluffy head. Big nose of nutmeg and ginger. A touch of molasses. Nutmeg dominates the flavor with a dry powdery character. The finish is off dry. Just a touch of cookie-ish molasses malts. The mouthfeel is soft, fluffy and velvety as always. Put a few years on it and its truly exceptional, Iím sure.
SudsMcDuff (7744) - .....Manchester United.........., Texas, USA - APR 25, 2006
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
UPDATED: APR 6, 2010 hahahaha....put me in a room and my fears and weaknesses will show....weakness #1 is good spiced xmas beer. i canít help it. dark dark brown...good lacing...tan head...beutiful spice dust -Tar smell...tasty too! ..is quite full and complex....yes, xmas ales are my forte....man u, 4-0.....
rerate í06...seems to be a let down but last years scores seem right, one less in taste, but overall has gone up slightly...
rerate:08 .. . this year seems darker .. Sat 12/06/08; drank while watching arsenal vs wigan .. .. lots of sweet pine, cherry, fruity all spice aromas .. big pretty head, impressive .. . a bit over spiced, would age well .. 5 years would be good .. . very x-masy, relaxs me ..
jb (2785) - Rochester, New York, USA - APR 23, 2006
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JAN 9, 2015 2005 - Great look - dark reddish brown with tan head with good lacing. Aroma of mostly cinnamon, palate is rich and creamy - chocolate, yeast, some hops and loads of malt. These special anchor ales are always a treat.
2006 - nice dark porterish stuff. Served on draft in a Belgian-styled goblet. Thick tan head. Aroma of chocolate, toffee, molasses. Faint spices also. Malty palate, faint smoky taste. Decent, much less Christmas spices than most Iíve had this year.
2014 - an outstanding year. Clear, dark, orange highlight, 1 inch head. thick lacing. Heavy nutmeg presence in nose and palate. Sweet, delicious smooth rich palate. Not super complex.