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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 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.


3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
argo0 (12772) - Washington DC, USA - NOV 27, 2005
UPDATED: DEC 7, 2005 (12-6-05, draft) Clear mahogany body with creamy tan head. Aroma is moderately sweet, nutmeg, some juniper, chocolate, cherry. Taste is medium sweet, nutmeg, cherry, grape, juniper, some molasses, light chocolate. Smooth medium body, very drinkable. Much better than my first time trying it. (7/4/7/4/14)

(11-27-05, bottle) Crystal clear dark red-brown body with nice tan head. Aroma is medium sweet, nutmeg, molasses. Taste is medium sweet, molasses, nutmeg, light earthy, caramel. Watery medium body, light stickiness. (5/5/6/3/11)

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
FatPhil (12692) - Tallinn, ESTONIA - JUN 22, 2007
UPDATED: DEC 4, 2010 Keg (Gallows Bird, Espoo)
Really dark, almost black, tight cappuccino head. Huge aroma - dark fruits, spices and ginger. Huge, but wonderfully well integrated range of tastes. Dark fruits, raisins, plenty of chocolate malt, burnt caramel, and some tantalising spices - some not out of place in a christmas pudding. Anchor’s best ever beer (so far...) (8-4-9-4-16=4.1)
Rerate: Bottle 2007, drunk 2010-01 (7,4,8,5,15=3.8)
Really mellowed, rich, spices also mellow. A proper non-gimicky winter ale. Lovely smooth palate,carbonation soft. Finish delicately burnt, but very liquoricey. BCs well.
Rerate: Bottle 2010, drunk fresh (7,4,7,4,14=3.6)
Sweet spicy aroma, very spicy - cakey. Deep red, small ring head.. Spicy - woh!!! mint! Full and roasty body, but the mint comes through so much. Full palate, sweetly smooth, crisp carbonation. Finish has roasted choco. Very drinkable, packed full of flavour. Refreshing. Good, but possibly weak compared to prior ones. Too light?

3.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
HenrikSoegaard (12637) - Randers, DENMARK - JUN 23, 2011
Bottle. 2009 version. Creamy off-white excellent mostly lasting head. DArk red-amber colour. Powerfull malty and espcially spicey aroma. Strong resin/woody notes. Light bitter slightly spicey flavor. Average medicin finish. Oily palate.

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Ratman197 (12540) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - DEC 16, 2005
Bottle poured a clear dark mahogany with a large, lasting brown head. Aromas of carmel, coffee, vanilla and spices. Palate was medium bodied. Flavors of chocolate, vanilla and spices with a hint of smoke and a smooth finish.

3.5
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
bu11zeye (12516) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - DEC 10, 2005
(Bottle) Pours a dark brown body with a small tan head. Aroma of pine, orange, licorice, and nutmeg. Flavor of nutmeg, cocoa, roasted malt, and molasses.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Christian (12289) - Odense, DENMARK - MAR 26, 2008
UPDATED: NOV 12, 2011 2006 bottle in 2008. Dark brown with a medium sized off-hite head. Strongly spiced aroma, strong clove, along with resin, allspice, cardemum, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Dark dried fruit in the background. Flavour is sweet and spiced. Finishes dry thanks to resin and spice. I’d like to say that the beer is too spiced for my taste, but the mix of spices is so interesting I can’t stop taking another sip and discover more. 3.2

Fresh 2011 bottle. Strong spicy aroma dominated by clove and cardemum, with some raisin and dark sugar. Caramel and spice flavour with a slightly roasted finish

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Lubiere (12241) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 15, 2006
Dark reddish brown with a thin moka head. Butterscotch, cinnamon and thyme in aroma. In mouth, a rather spciey malt, perfumey, a bit buttery. Molasses. Almost detecting rosewater in finish. Interesting, but not to par with previous versions. Dégustation de Vieux Stocks III, Oct. 13, 2006. Bottle bought in late 2005.

3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
Benzai (12156) - Oirschot, THE NETHERLANDS, NETHERLANDS - JUN 18, 2011
Small bottle (with 2010 on it), shared with Drebus. Great color, dark with a deep-red glow. Makes you feel warm in cold days just by looking at it. Smelling it is completely different though. I smelled pepper! On first notive the taste is good, light bitter, but the aftertaste is pepper again, and that is somethibng I do not want to taste in my beer.

3.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
bierkoning (11862) - La Tropica, NETHERLANDS - FEB 27, 2006
UPDATED: JAN 18, 2011 2005 version: Tap, ’t Klooster Delft. Sold as "snow Anchor". Loads of clove both in aroma and flavor. Very spicy, with clove up front. Some malt and raisin. Lacks balance. 6 3 6 2 10 = 2.7 2007 version: bottle: Strong aroma of red berries, cardemom and ginger. Spicy, yet warm alcoholic flavor with red berries. Thin. Too spicy to be really enjoyable. 2010 version: bottle. Dark brown color. Anis, dried fruit, orange peel and cardemom in the aroma. Sweet, spicy flavor with lots of citrusfruit, cinnamon, anis and cardemom. Spicy, but still satisfyingly balanced. (7 4 7 2 13 = 3.1)

2.3
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 8/20
mcberko (11861) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - DEC 13, 2010
12 oz. bottle, pours dark brown with a small tan head. Aroma of cinnamon, ginger, vanilla and clove. Flavour of christmas spices and heavy on the ginger. This definitely isn’t for me.


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