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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 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.


4.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
pj1855 (160) - Eagan, Minnesota, USA - NOV 28, 2008
UPDATED: NOV 29, 2008 This is a fantastic beer. Pours a dark amber color with a small light brown head. Aroma of roasted malts and Cinnamon. Great mouthfeel. Complex flavor. Tastes of cinnamon, roasted malts and chocolate. Pefect balance of everything. Very sad to take the last sip of this one.

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Chiswick (159) - Greater London, ENGLAND - JAN 3, 2012
2011 edition. colour is dark brown with a reddish tint. pours a reddish tanned thick, dense, foamy head that stays on forever. looks very balanced. the aromascape is interesting with malt, dark bread, berries, wood, juniper, alcohol, dark chocolate and caramel, a sweet fruit, ginger and dough. the taste completely suprised me with the most sweet hops finished off with low tasty bitterness. leaves a salty drop on the lips. a round sourness finishes the package. the palate is extremely well done; the body is creamy and oily textured and full, but not overpowering. it just flows in and carries the tastes incredibly well. might be one of the best iíve had from anchor. great job.

2.8
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
gonzosauce (157) - Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - MAR 22, 2013
(2012) Weird, interesting beer. Indeed, almost every aspect of the beer surprised me! Much darker than expected, though a lightly colored head. Necco wafers (!), berried hard candy and a touch of juniper in the smell, along with some mellow but certain root beer action. Summarily, smells like a root beer Necco wafer. None-the-less, not too sweet, nor junipery in the flavor. That being said, definitely on the sweeter side, but even as a guy who shies from such, Iím enjoying this one. Actually a pretty enjoyable flavor, if not a bit confusing. Indeed, this is a good example of a beer with a heavily accented flavor that is still well-balanced in itís overall taste. Mouthfeel was a bit sparse, and aftertaste suffered in comparison to the flavor, but these werenít detriments. My only complaint is that it never really occurred to me what I was drinking. Which, come to think of it, isnít necessarily a complaint. Off to work on this very large bottle.

4.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
gizmo_ber (157) - - DEC 21, 2013
2013 edition. Great spice blend, but goes down very smooth and creamy. A delicious ale.

3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
balke13 (156) - MIssoula, Montana, USA - DEC 22, 2005
Bottle. Poured a very dark brown w/lively tan head. Cinnamon, clove, anise, carmel, and pumpkin all permeate from the lip of the glass...quite inviting. The body is both slightly thin yet smooth with a strong anise and cinnamon flavor with hints of brown sugar and a spicy finish.

3
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 14/20
rgrep (156) - Wellington, NEW ZEALAND - MAY 27, 2006
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.

3.3
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
tony_gorilla (156) - Fiskum, NORWAY - DEC 13, 2013
A brown red christmas beer. Weak smell but taste good. A fair enough beer. Had it before and will have it again.

5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
NickVega (154) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - AUG 19, 2007
Perfect. I have had every year since I can remember. Usually in bottle and on tap. Also -- at Stuffed Sandwiches in CA you can usually try different years (aged) side by side. Wish I had it everyday.

3.5
   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
fcjack1 (154) - Washington, USA - NOV 8, 2013
On tap at The Red Hot. Almost looks like Porter. Smells like a brown, nutty. Taste of vanilla and coffee and spices. Smooth. Good beer.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
CigarsLoveBeer (153) - Illinois, USA - NOV 13, 2006
Bottle, í06 vintage. Attractive tan head. Dark color. Malt, cloves, and licorice aromas. interesting, but somewhat mild. The taste was much the same, with a somewhat interesting colection of sweet spices noted in this beer towards the end. The finish was dry, mild, and lingering. Body was much lighter than expected. Seems like it could go well with spicy or smokey food, as well as vegetable dishes.


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