sistinas (102) - Mountain View, California, USA - NOV 17, 2006
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle (2006). Pours a dark amber color with a medium head that leaves a decent amount of lacing. Sweet malts and some indiscernable yet inviting spice in the aroma. Flavor this year is massively ginger-like (in the nonalcoholic ginger beer and not ginger ale sort of way), with a backbone of vanilla, orange peels, apricots, and a little caramel. Actually, it sort of reminds me of ginger snap cookies. A wee bit watery. Medium bodied with a very dry finish. Quite good though I think I liked last year’s version a wee bit better - it was a bit fruitier.
cewldre (268) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - NOV 16, 2006
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle: Pours a dark gold, almost rusty color. Head was a small white head. Smell seems to have quite a bit of spice in it. I notice a nice hint of ginger in this one. I also think I smell a bit of all spice in here as well. Taste is full of ginger, with a hint of a bit of other spice as well. The ginger flavor makes this beer a bit dry to drink, but it’s still enjoyable.
TheBeerLover (1025) - DC Metro Area, USA - NOV 13, 2006
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
12 oz bottle, 2006 version. I look forward to this beer every Christmas season. Like Anchor OSA, the recipe of this beer changes each year, and this beer is always spiced. This year’s version is another hearty, delicious, ale with lots of aroma and flavor. This beer pours to a bright, deep amber color, with a soapy, white head that fades, and a moderate to soft carbonation. The nose on this beer is very inviting, with lots of good malty aromas of toffee, light roast, nuts, and vibrant orange/citrus hop aroma. The palate is firm, and slightly slick, with good flavors of toffee, caramel, nutty malt, and light roasty notes. Flavors of orange peel, vanilla, and hints of holiday spice add a nice back drop to this beer. Winter Soltice finishes with more good toffee and nutty flavors up front, then ends with flavors of vanilla, spice, orange peel, and zesty hop bitternes that lingers. Hop aroma and hop bitterness are much more evident in this year’s version than past ones. A wonderful holiday brew. This beer makes for a great aperitif, digestif, or a wonderful beer to sip and savor over the Christmas/holiday season. Great beer!
obxdude10 (2077) - Pottstown, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 12, 2006
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Nice seasonal beer, amber color, very minimal off-white head, just a little bit of lacing around the glass, full nose of sweet maltiness with hints of toffee, caramel & earthy hops, medium-full body, didn’t get that warming effect, though, which was a bit of a disappointment, flavors were very well-balanced with a great hop profile & a deep maly character, included were hints of earthy hops, champagne, apricot & oranges, bold finish with a touch of alcohol & hop spiciness
tronraner (2459) - Walland, Tennessee, USA - NOV 10, 2006
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Pours dark orange red with khaki head. The aroma is strong rum and raisins, with some licorice notes. The flavor is a very rounded maltiness with a dose of vanilla. Raisins and clove come out quickly afterward, and fade into a piney finish with some very faint corriander. The aftertaste is strangely like that of bourbon, except less harsh. A slightly watery tone comes out once in a while, but that’s really the only defect. This is pretty good; I kinda wish I’d bought more.
HopheadHans (804) - Bay Area, California, USA - NOV 9, 2006
3.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tap. Pours quite dark with a medium head. Aromas of caramel and molasses. The flavor is more ceamy with hints of vanilla and hops and a pronounced maltiness. Very smooth and creamy on the palate, quite nice.
maniac (3800) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - NOV 7, 2006
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Hazy amber body with a small tan head. Sweet vanilla aroma. Sweet spiced flavor with a noticable vanilla cream flavor.
after4ever (6265) - Brier, Washington, USA - NOV 5, 2006
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bomber. Pours deep brown; clear if your glass is narrow enough. Thick sudsy white head. Big spicy nose, but in a savory herbal way; nothing peppery. Jonpol nails it with the "graham cracker." This is very much like a warm gingerbread cookie, though it’s hard to say there are any significant ginger notes in here. Medium body, medium carb, mellow attack. The cookie/oat/graham/vanilla notes persist through the palate. Not much finish. Alcohol’s well-hidden. Fun to drink but not an earth shaker.
GreatLibations (1854) - Last Supper, Arizona, USA - OCT 31, 2006
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: NOV 8, 2007 Pours dark amber w/ a full semi creamy froth reducing to fine blanket. Aroma is sweet w/ berries and red licorice. Medium nectar w/ mellow residuals. Flavors are fruity w/ fresh berries spice and a nice grahm cracker appeal w/ vanilla bean. Finish is bittered nicely. Reminds me of rootbeer.
skoisirius (1763) - Earth, Washington, USA - OCT 30, 2006
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
2006 Vintage at 6.9% ABV. 12 oz bottle into a Lager glass. Pours an amber copperish see through color with a foamed and slightly tanned white head. The aroma brings a malted nutmeggy vanilla essence to the nose. Hints of Earth are present as well. The flavor starts off with a hazlenutty malt taste, which moves swiftly into a very vannila, cinnamon, and spice flavor. This one definitely ends on the spice note with nutmeg and cinnamon. Very creamy and smooth on the palate. A tiny bit of alcohol is present on the roof of the mouth after a sip. A well done winter brew!!