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RATINGS: 1962   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
This is our special ale from the brewers at Anchor. It is sold only from early November to mid-January. The Aleís 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.

Editorís 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.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
SB (334) - Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 27, 2005
UPDATED: JAN 4, 2007 From Bottle, PDC@Pittsburgh, PA

2005-Drank from bottle, did get a nice whif of the spicy aroma. First sip brought with it woodsy, earthy flavors, and spices in the aftertones. Very nice, drinkable, smooth going down brew.
2006-From Bottle. Tan pour with some highlights, light tan head, 1-inch thick, creamy looking and laced the glass. Aroma was malty and not as spicy as last year. Flavor was balanced with woody, bready, molassas flavors. Full Bodied. Creamy, smooth mouthfeel.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
wingman333 (333) - San Antonio, Texas, USA - NOV 30, 2009
2009...I remember liking previous years much more. This one is thin in flavor primarily, mainly a brown ale, with some burnt roast added with a hint of pear juice or maybe pineapple. Weak this year. Would not recommend unless you like brown ales.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Gustav1996 (333) - Birmingham, Alabama, USA - NOV 23, 2010
2010 Vintage. Poured a beautiful dark ruby with a dark tan head. Aroma was a understated mix of sweet malts, fruit and spices. Taste: sweet malts, fruity, spices... great mix that really tastes like a Holiday desert to me: apple, mild caramel, cinnamon. Medium body, smooth mouthfeel, very well balanced. Overall a very good brew.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 11/20
BaroneBirra (332) - Gorizia, ITALY - DEC 11, 2013
2013 version labeled for Europe. Sweet cloves aroma. Lots of Christmas spices in the taste: cloves, cinnamon, orange peel and candy apple. Nice because reminds all the Christmas flavours,but too low with body an alcohol and unbalanced with spices .

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 7/20
Wegro (332) - Fresno, California, USA - NOV 9, 2007
UPDATED: DEC 29, 2008 2008 bottle. ok i dont remember this beer being this bad, but i have learned a lot since the last one came out. honestly all i can think of is jagermeister with this one. its like somebody put a shot of it in a very light bodied porter and thats wtf is in my glass right now. i think its going down the drain.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
aplusbreaks (330) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - NOV 26, 2008
2005 vintage consumed Oct of ’08. I was really drunk when rating this so keep that in mind while reading my notes.... Pours a black/brown with a nice sized tan head. Aromas of....Its Anchor X-mas!! Cedar, spruce, syrup and hops. Flavors....god I love this stuff. Spices, hops, malts, and woody flavors.This has aged quite nicely. 2004 vintage was always a favorite of mine, but the ’05 has held up quite nicely.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
foduck (330) - Denton, Texas, USA - JAN 9, 2007
I donít know if itís me that changed or the beer that changed but it doesnít seem as good as previous years. Too sweet and cloying now. I seem to remember more spice before.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 8/20
Avengedpoet (329) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - MAR 10, 2009
2008 vintage. Pours almost black with decent brown head. Aroma is originally very off-putting. My brain simultaneously thought chocolate and fecal...not good. Oddly enough, as it warmed it morphed into a much nicer pine/mint aroma. Taste is also originally quite off-putting, being over-spiced and tasting like burned chocolate. Again, as it warms, it improves and becomes more balanced. Overall a very dry beer. Lesson: donít drink this at a cold or cool temperature, itís disgusting.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
DMLINAZ (329) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - DEC 27, 2012
2012 brew. From a bottle into a frosted ale glass, pours deep brown or cola with a fluffy, lasting white head. Interesting flavor - almost like a brown ale with something a bit overpowering, like nuts, anise, something I canít quite put my finger on. Intriguing and very drinkable for one bottle, but not sure Iíd enjoy more than that at a time.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Neeskens (328) - SWEDEN - DEC 16, 2010
Bottled. Dark ruby with a off-white head. The aroma is gingerbread biscuits all the way. There are spices like cloves and cardamon as well as a good caramel maltiness. More of the same in the taste, but with more hoppy notes of fruit and pine.

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