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RATINGS: 2040   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
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.


3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
beerbrat99 (132) - Shanghai, CHINA - NOV 28, 2007
Nice rich porter like color with notes of chocolate and spice. Great dark tan head with excellent lacing. Nice allspice finish that lingers just a bit before Iím ready for another sip. A very enjoyable winter beer that I will continue to enjoy after a day on the slopes.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
grikmok (132) - Little Rock, Arkansas, USA - DEC 18, 2007
Pours to a frothy, off-white, thick head. The aroma was complex and actually had a hint of eucalyptus spice. Flavor was complex and spicy. The finish was yeasty. Had a very good experience. Will definitely buy again.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
OnWisconsin (132) - Wisconsin, USA - DEC 23, 2012
Pours a dark amber/ brown. Aroma....ginger,ginger,ginger! A sweetness fallows with nutmeg and a hint of cinnamon. Taste is very similar to the nose which hits with tons of ginger up front following with other winter spices such as the cinnamon. Mouthfeel is light and over carbonated. Let the carbonation mellow out with some swirling and this is a nice sessionable winter/Christmas beer.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Shooter42 (131) - California, USA - DEC 15, 2013
Amazingly tasty and the best Christmas Ale I have had so far. Make sure to stock up and enjoy, as itís only available for a very limited time per year. Great mixture of malts and spices.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
steve1966 (131) - Florida, USA - NOV 28, 2012
UPDATED: FEB 26, 2014 2012 bottle Frothy head great lacing bitter at first almost tastes like a porter. Ginger in there pine came out as it warmed awesome beer it would not be Christmas without this excellent beer. Lots of different things going on here. May be overrated but its a classic 2012 bottle drank 1/6/14Great pour nice head has that Christmas in a glass smell. Still strong finish still good boy this is a good beer. Minty finish spruce pine chocolate. 2011 bottle tasted 12/21/13 App 4 Aroma 7 Palate 3 Taste 6 Overall 12 Huge head bottle smells great. Herbal earthy pine aroma. Dry thin finish is the weakness on this its lost a bit there. Great chocolate taste I did not notice when fresh. A bit past its prime but still pretty good.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
noompa (130) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 2, 2009
12 oz. bottle (2008), poured into a Guinness pint glass. The best Christmas ale out there, in my view. Ar: Pine, nutmeg, Cinnamon, bread, faint molasses, ginger, lots of pine and spruce. Ap: Pours a large, frothy roan head that diminished into some nice lacing fairly quickly. Clear caramel-ruby color. Fl: Citrus, tons of spice, ginger, dry roasted malts and some chocolate, anise and cloves even. Pa: Swills around nicely in the mouth and not as thin as some found it, but I didnít want anything dense. Nice dry balance @ the end. Aroma was the strongest suit- great holiday beer. Had a year old 2007 bottle as well- flavors become more distinct, but less complex. One of my faves.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
scottyshades (130) - Parkland, Florida, Florida, USA - SEP 20, 2012
Thanks to bamadog, your beers are in the mail! A: Pours a very dark brown, pretty much black color. The eggshell color head is small and retains decently S: Carrot cake, bread, lots of berries, figs, raisins, and some nice spices (cinnamon, cardamom, allspice) to give a festive nose. T: Pretty mellow flavor, spicy but not overdone (cardamom, cinnamon, allspice), black licorice, molasses raisins, toffee, caramel. Hops are not really apparent, but everything comes together pretty nicely. MF/D: Light in body, carbonation is good but a little prickly, alcohol is hidden, and the finish is of bread and molasses. Notes: I prefer the í08 to this, so Iím going to cellar a few of these for a year or two. Nonetheless, a nice beer that doesnít wear on your palate

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
ajolly2 (129) - USA - DEC 10, 2006
2006. Head: thick; dark tan in color. Body: very dark with some ruby tint to it; opaque. Fruity aroma. At first taste, a little thinner on the tongue than the beerís attractive appearance leads on. Taste is somewhat spicy, not smoky at all, some fruitiness but not sweet. Some bitterness emerges as it cools to room temperature. Iím no expert on Christmas brews, and this one was a little lighter than I wanted, but I highly enjoyed it and would recommend it to any ale drinkers.

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
iggynelix (129) - Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 6, 2015
This is one of my seasonal favorites and 2016ís ale is among the best in class. Pours dark mahogany but clear with a rich tan head. Molasses and ginger notes are strongest on the nose and palate. I five a hint of feral nose and there might be a slight umami flavour add well. Yummy...Santa, I need a case of this.

3.2
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
IEBAILI (128) - San Diego, California, USA - FEB 11, 2008
Spice hits right away, like spiced apple cider, strong almost like one of those scented candles (which I hate). Very dark, clear ale with good looking amber highlightsand a rocky beige head with good retention. Christmas spices completely dominate the smell, obscuring any malt or hop aroma. Taste is, thankfully, more mellow than the smell, although spices are still very prominent, thereís a decent malt backbone and a pleasant bitterness. I think that cinnamon, cardamom, and ginger are the main spices, but Iím not claiming any expertise in this area. Some caramel apple flavor, smooth feel even though the carbonation is a bit much for my taste. I would probably enjoy this one more with age on it, right now itís almost one dimensional and not too enjoyable to me. Some citrus emerges on the finish.


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