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RATINGS: 1946   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53   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.


2.9
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
moseefus (79) - Little Rock, Arkansas, USA - NOV 22, 2007
Didn’t like it as much as the 2006. Pour was beautiful, almost black with a thick tan head (that is still there 10min later). Smells of hops, malt, spices. Taste is quite hoppy with that spice kick right underneath. Finish is slightly long and bitter for me. The spice seems to be ginger driven, with nutmeg, and a hint of cinnamon. Quite tasty, though I think I like some other christmas ales better.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
blatantdream (78) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - NOV 26, 2005
On tap at Mugs Ale House in Brooklyn, NY. Pours a deep brownish almost black color with a nice lacing on top. Now this is what I call a Christmas Ale! Tastes of Christmas trees, spicy mulled cider, and all the earthy goodness we relate to Christmas. Nicely toasted malts and fragrant floral hops really rounds out this beer. A big surprise for me how good this was. I hope I can get some more this holiday season.

4.5
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
Beerowulf (76) - , Indiana, USA - DEC 25, 2010
Served from Magnum bottle. 2008 vintage. Dark brown with 2 finger head. Sweet and roasty taste and a great smooth finish. 2008 was a good year for this one!!!!!!

3.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Schnabelhund (74) - Berlin, GERMANY - JUL 16, 2012
UPDATED: JUL 19, 2012 Pours very dark brown with a frothy beige head of short to medium lifetime. If the head had dissipated a little more slowly, this beer would have been beautiful. The nose is somewhat savory and has prune and pine forest notes; the malt has the aroma of fruit bread and worcester sauce. Very, very nice! The flavor is less savory than the nose would suggest, but the prune, roasty-sweet malt and pine resin notes are very pleasant. It has just about the right amount of sweetness and bitterness and they are well balanced. The carbonation is medium-high. It leaves a long finish with notes of German dark bread crust on the palate. Damn, this is good beer.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
mattdev (74) - Oregon, USA - DEC 12, 2010
Pours a very deep, dark brownish red with a poofy brown head and almost zero opacity. Smell is rich of allspice, christmas cookies, some metallic notes, cinnamon, cloves and roastyness. Caramel and a slight woodyness comes through as well. Taste is moderately sweet and moderately bitter, but most of the bitterness coming from the toasted malt and spices. Huge nutmeg and cinnamon with hints of ginger and beautiful maillard qualities. Finishes with a lovely spice linger. This will age phenomenally.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
conciergeman (73) - Minnesota, USA - NOV 17, 2010
2010 version, my first "our special ale" and it was impressive. Deliciously complex, malty, good hop balance, very deep flavors with a light mouth feel. Its a balance that I haven’t found better anywhere else. mmm

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
sneevel (71) - - NOV 10, 2012
Pours dark reddish brown with a small off white head. Aromas of dark malt, molasses and cloves. Nicely spiced. Could use a bit more concentration, but generally a nice Christmas beer with some good citrusy flavours and some hops. Again, the spices sit in the background nicely.

3.1
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
SirSlarty (68) - Reading, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 16, 2007
Looks and smells almost like a brown ale. Frothy tan head. Looks great. Tastes good too. Surprised me. Major hints of apple and other fruits.

2.8
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
JustinBennett (67) - junction city, Kansas, USA - DEC 20, 2007
bottle thanks to ford9719. poured a dark brown. smelt of ginger and spice. tasted bitter. cinnamon after taste.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
erschiuma (67) - ITALY - MAY 12, 2011
2009 bevuta maggio 2011. color marrone scuro quasi nero schiuma fine di poca persistenza ma d buona allacciatura! sapore complesso spezie malto tostato e liquore in bocca all’inizio l’ho trovata un po difficile, l’amaro di luppolo americano si faceva sentire troppo in fretta stonando con le note sia speziate che di frutta zuccherina matura(tipo ciliegie prugne o giu di li) dopo qualche minuto il tutto era perfetto!un gusto un po acido ,vino forte quasi liquore note speziate,,un po di liquirizia cannella chiodi di garofano caffè e forse anche ciccolata!dopo un po di minuti la birra era molto piu armoniosa !retrogusto lungo dove l’amaro si fa sentire ma che lascia spazio ancora a note liquorose! birra che sembra piu alcolica di quello che in realta è!!


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