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RATINGS: 1821   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.


3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
efrumtheidiot (190) - Colorado, USA - FEB 15, 2008
2007 bottle. pours a dark ruby-copper with a tan head. aroma is clove, spice, dark fruits, sweetness, and yeah, i actually do sense the furniture polish hughie wrote of (haha, a strangely satisfying aroma)! taste is clovey, liquorice, dirt, spices, light cinnamony raisins. tastes very christmas-like, similar to bread pudding. mid-light bodied with a bubbly, prickly mouthfeel. not a bad brew at all, has that classic anchor taste with a holiday twist. not a flavor explosion, but a gently satisfying holiday session brew. will definately buy again next year.

3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Chickencoop (188) - California, USA - AUG 6, 2010
For what this is, it is a solid winter beer that has become a tradition, .....but this just came off to spiced and having a odd metalic twang throughout. I love Anchor, remember this in the day in college when you’d be all like, winter beers rock, then pound one and puke, good times.

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.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
chilehead (186) - Laguna Niguel, California, USA - DEC 9, 2005
I had this on draft at Pizza Port San Clemente. A very different and seasonal tasting brew. Nose strongly of cider spices and bubble gum, mouth of bubble gum, fruit, and cinnamon. I wouldn’t want this all year round, but it’s just right for Christmas :-) Pour was dark brown.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
37steel (186) - St. Charles, Illinois, USA - DEC 3, 2007
2007 edition. 12 oz bottle. Dark brown with a thick tan head. Aroma is caramel malt with some spices. Flavor has cinnamon, nutmeg (?) and maple. A little thin on the finish.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
mustangjoe (183) - redondo beach, California, USA - DEC 1, 2005
On tap @Najas, Redondo Beach, Ca. Dark brown, just about black with a nice tan head on top. My first Anchor OSA, and it was great. Aroma was overflowing with spicyness and earthy overtones. Delicious flavors come through as well to make this a definite new favorite of mine. It was great drinking this brew while the sun was setting over the Pacific.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 17/20
mintzmeet (183) - 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

3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
jerd16 (181) - Gloucestershire, ENGLAND - FEB 22, 2014
Pours dark brown, with some purple embers. Small 1 finger head retreats almost immediately. Aroma is dominated by ginger, cinnamon & liquorice, some cherry and perhaps a little citrus in the background. Sweet and sour cherry leaks onto the palate, followed by some ginger, nutmeg and a hint of cinnamon. Leaves a hue of roasted-malt-bitterness in its wake. Palate is medium and consistent but due to excessive carbonation is almost soda-esque. Its status as one of Anchor’s flagship beers warrants a more pronounced flavor profile and aroma.

2.9
   AROMA 2/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Slubgob (181) - West Hartford, USA - DEC 15, 2012
201. Nearly opaque mahogany with a fine white head clinging to the glass. Not getting a lot of aroma.in the mouth it?s a bit thin, which makes it an easy if not very intriguing drink.bit of overbrewed coffee bitterness and dust or cocoa in the back. Add it warms up a bit it rounds out some. Basically a winter brown ale, decently done bit not terribly different from others out there. Really not being any of the spices other reviewers ate picking up on.although as it gets warmer maybe a bit in back?

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
luvcasks (178) - USA - NOV 18, 2007
pours a dark brown with gorgeousgarnet highlights and nice tan head Very nice caramel, a little roast, some oak nutmeg, some dark fruits (figs) maybe some all spice Flavor is almost like a porter while sliding away with a lighter body and a more festive flavor profile. The hop flavor is nicely restrained yet present to keep the beer enjoyable. The finish is nice long, rich with short hint of figs and nutmeg leaving a slightly creamy dry finish WOW! Another of my holiday must finds... still a solid beer year after year. For me this is beer to taste as it ages try some when young and with patience try in a year or two the spices change and is still a treat Oh Yeah! Thanks to the brewers at Anchor for bringing the regular caps back instead of the screw tops


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