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RATINGS: 1830   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.


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.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
CigarsLoveBeer (153) - Illinois, USA - NOV 13, 2006
Bottle, ’06 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.

4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
tseo (153) - Athens, GREECE - SEP 28, 2012
2011 vintage: Aroma: Liquorice, burnt caramel, blackberries, figs, raisins, tobacco, pine wood,cinnamon, medicinal notes and more. Really nice interplay. Mouthfeel: Big and foamy, medium carbonation. Taste: Balanced taste. Dry. Whoa, lots of unidentified spices. Bitter on the top of the tongue with an earthy, herbal quality. Finish: Coffee touches with a long, long dry finish. A small amount of tartness, too. Overall: Truly special. Not my fave, but still I can appreciate it for the great, memorable beer it is.

3.4
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Diablokev (152) - Lakewood, Colorado, USA - DEC 26, 2013
2013 version. Aroma is nutty but slight. Appearance is dark brown with a cream head. Taste is a bit nutty as well very smooth and easy to drink. Overall not bad.

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Sathorael (151) - Oceanside, California, USA - NOV 30, 2012
Pours a rich mahogany with a thin tan head. Not much lacing. Aromas of spice and malty sweetness. Taste is roasted malts, spice, mild buttery sweetness. Medium mouthfeel and a brief sweetness.

2.1
   AROMA 2/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
jdavidh (151) - California, USA - DEC 12, 2013
Nice deep mocha color with a thick creamy head. Very light chocolate in the nose. Taste is is smoky, earthy, with a strange spice on the aftertaste that I can't place. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

2.3
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
aarossell (151) - Grandville, Michigan, USA - DEC 20, 2006
My bottle was 2006... brand new. Smells and looks a lot like soy sauce...add some strong ale aromas. Tastes okay. Not terrible...but I was expecting more of a spiced pale ale or something. oops. Very odd malts and sour flavors. Dark. Tan head.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Brewsmith (148) - Torrance, California, USA - DEC 27, 2008
The 2008 vintage from a 1.5L bottle purchased locally. Aroma is slightly roasty with a little hop citrus in there. Color is a dark brown like black coffee. Flavor has coffee and dark chocolate notes with some lemony hop flavor. I do not perceive any spices in there, maybe some spruce. It is a porter at the base and very well done. Malty but a dry finish without being too heavy. I would like to try this again in a year or two if I can get some more before they are gone.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
sandberglar (148) - Scottsdale, USA - DEC 5, 2010
2010 ale. Pours blackish with a brown head. Heavy ginger aroma. Medium-heavy body, you get a roasted malts and spices dominate the palate. Good brew.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
jtxx (148) - san antonio, Texas, USA - JUN 24, 2006
Cloves and Cinn..very nice Christmas beer. Mild body. Creamy, black with thin white head.


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