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RATINGS: 1829   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.


3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Photog (215) - Camillus, New York, USA - DEC 1, 2011
Color is beautiful, deep ruby red. Very malty, toasty caramel malt. Lightly spiced. Not a big hop presents, pretty good warming beer.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
mikeyo1 (214) - Linköping, SWEDEN - DEC 2, 2013
2011 edition, bottle @ home. Nice head with good lacing. Moderately sweet, herbal nose, hints of licorice, orange, ginger, some clove. Taste is somewhat dry with moderate sweetness. Medium body and soft carbonation. Hints of honey, licorice, ginger, grass. It ends with a nice hitting touch of pepper, and some lightly sour dry bitterness.

3.1
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Driftwood6 (214) - USA - DEC 7, 2007
On tap at Brixie’s, Brookfield IL. Spices pretty subdued. Most noticable was the dry finish with a touch of bitterness. I think I liked the Great Lakes Christmas Ale a little better.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
shonobiwan (213) - Sound Beach, New York, USA - DEC 23, 2011
Long Island, NY - Growler poured into a .5 liter lager glass. Pours a nice full brown color with slightly tan moderate head and mild lacing. As you bring it up for a sip you get a waft of roasted malt, nutmeg, cinnamon and maybe some cardamom. Brilliant. Taste is of above mentioned spices followed by a malty bitterness that’s just right. As the beer warmed the flavors developed further and the ethanol taste became stronger but overall it was quoted good, reminding me of a warm mulled Polish beer. This is good stuff! One to remember. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
barenada (211) - Georgetown, Indiana, USA - DEC 18, 2005
(draft) Pretty damn good. Higly malty, with a touch of coffee. No chocolate or licorice at all, but still a good beer.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jodah52 (210) - Michigan, USA - DEC 18, 2009
2009. Dark reddish-brown with a dense tan head. Aromas of malt, cypress, foxwood and spruce in the nose; a hint of warm gingerbread-like spices in the mouth. Flavor is sweet with a dry afterbite, bit of sourness at the end. Very good holiday beer.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 12/20
kindacold (210) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - FEB 13, 2014
2013 bottle. Pours reddish dark brown with thick tan head that dissipates quickly. Smells of spices and grain. Light mouthfeel with fine carbonation. Lots of spices and pepper in the front, hints of celery, raisins, and a slightly hoppy finish in the back of the mouth. Throughout, there is a hint of orange pith. Slightly sticky finish.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
jackafholmes (209) - - SEP 19, 2014
Bottle from brewdog bar, sheffield. Dark brown with no head. Aroma is cinnamon, other spices and roasted malts. Taste is warming and tasty, malty and slightly smoky. Tingly carb and quite thin.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
ericmc83 (207) - Arkansas, USA - NOV 23, 2005
Aroma is amazing. Spices galore. It is a perfect reminder of what season it is...the aromas I associate with this time of year are captured very well in this brew. The spices I sensed on the nose are slightly less dominant in the flavor. Rather, the flavor is a rich, chewy, chocolate, toffee’ness that collaborates nicely with the spice. This is my first OSA and wow...I’m impressed to say the least.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 17/20
mintzmeet (207) - Seattle, Washington, USA - DEC 15, 2013
dark branchy color. mellow spicy aroma. full bodied in flavor, but not texture. pops with a bit of juniper. Christmas spices with dark sugar and ginger biscuit


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