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RATINGS: 1950   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53   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.


4.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
sinkr (323) - Odenton, Maryland, USA - NOV 30, 2007
2007 from the bottle: produces a nice, thick head that consists of many micro bubbles; has a nice spicy smell and a very light and spicy, but pleasant aftertaste that hangs around for about 30 seconds. I think this is a very pleasing holiday brew.

2.2
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 6/20
CaptBier (323) - Birmingham, Alabama, USA - JAN 12, 2008
Bottled. A pitch black beer with a slight brown shine under a huge brown head. The aroma is sweet with strong spicy notes among them strong notes of spruce and cardemomme - a bit too much for me. The flavor is sweet again with strong notes of spices - especially spruce and cardemmome, but then a note of roasted malt joins in, and combines with the spices to give it an extremely dry finish.

4.7
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
coolfunnj (323) - Margate City, New Jersey, USA - NOV 15, 2010
2010 version..aroma reminiscent of pumpkin pie with plenty of gingerbread, nutmeg and cinnamon..yumm..very dark brown appearance with slight tan head lacing each sip..delicious flavor mixing pumpkin,gingernread cinnamon nutmeg perhaps caramel..slightly tingly carbonation perfect medium body very drinkable even sessionable at only 5.5 abv..this is my favorite holiday beer and after two years where i really wasnt so jazzed about it this years is excellent really i cant name a more complex or full flavored brew at this abv

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
asteele8 (322) - Des Moines, Washington, USA - DEC 1, 2006
UPDATED: DEC 20, 2006 Bottle. Got to say this is one of my favorite bottle artworks. Pours a dark brown color with a a very thick tan head on top. Looks delicious! Aroma is malty, nutmeg, gingerbread, cinnamon, ginger root, and spice are in the aroma also. Flavor is full of gingerbread, spice, and caramel. A very interesting taste, like a cold gingerbread latte from Starbucks. Definitely a nice Christmas beer.

2.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 8/20
stison42 (318) - Blacksburg, Virginia, USA - DEC 28, 2006
UPDATED: JAN 21, 2007 Black. Lightly spiced, a bit more spice would have added to the beer a lot. Only an Ok beer.

2.1
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 6/20
santos999 (318) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 3, 2008
07 bottle. Pours a real dark brown with a thin off-white. Smells like a Christmas tree and roasted barley. The taste is overly spicy with little balance. I thought a year would help, I was damn wrong. Not on my wish list.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
StompBrockmore (316) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 16, 2007
UPDATED: MAR 17, 2007 12oz. bottle - pours very dark brown with ruby highlights and a light brown, caramel head leaving elegant lacing in the glass. Aroma is very malty, fruity and tart, somewhat sweet. Reminded me of many traditional English dark ales, actually, but with notes of chocolate and molasses. Flavour however is a kick in the ass, a very complex array on the palate. Starts off with some sweet chocolate, spruce, lots of spice that I can’t put my finger on. Finishes with toffee and chocolate, along with some sweet maltiness and light vanilla. The aftertaste is long and delicious. This is a very unique, complex and satisfying beer. Great!

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
bconch (316) - - JAN 19, 2013
2012. Dark brown pour. Little to no head. Smell of dark fruits. Taste is similar with a coffee presence. Almost like a Belgian stout.

3.4
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Melkart (316) - Porto Alegre, BRAZIL - NOV 28, 2013
Very nice beer. I tasted floral and a little bit honey. The alcohol show itself a little bit, but the beer is balanced considering the whole. Dark collor and light body.

3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
ninecats (316) - Uddevalla, SWEDEN - FEB 26, 2015
Backlog, Christmas 2014. Bottle. Dark brown with two finger tan head, dissipates quickly leaving some lacings. Wonderful aroma of pine needles, vanilla, spices, liquorice, malt. Taste about the same with a dry finish. Medium body, light to medium carbo.


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