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RATINGS: 1102   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.46   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 207   ABV: 6.9%
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Each year, when people are starting to unpack their winter clothes and replenish their firewood, our tiny brewery in the coastal redwoods of Northern California makes seasonal preparations of a different kind. As the cold arrives, we release a unique beverage created to add warmth to even the coldest and darkest of winter's days. Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale begins with a very high original gravity to create a hearty and spicy brew with a deep amber hue and a smooth finish. Anderson Valley Brewing Company wishes you the very best for the holiday season and the New Year.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
FoolishMortal (990) - San Diego, California, USA - NOV 29, 2005
Red orange with a small film of light tan head. Caramel, and spicy vegetal aromatics. Vanilla yogurt and earthen spiciness. Sweet and spicy finish. Mouthfeel is medium, almost creamy.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
brainskins (14) - evansville, Indiana, USA - NOV 28, 2005
Pours a turbid orange-amber with a small quickly dissipating white head. Smells like a butterscotch and a little vanilla. Tastes of caramel, vanilla, butterscotch and maybe a little like crreme soda with some nice added spice for the finish.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
bethmatt0421 (337) - Covington, Kentucky, USA - NOV 24, 2005
Dark brown appearance. Just slightly nutty aroma. The shocker is the dominate chocolate flavor. Maybe a little bit of vanilla, but I say chocolate. smooth textured. Not bad by any means, but different surely. I liked it, but it’s just not my style. This brew could use some more hoppy characteristics to make it balance out. Certainly worth a try. THAT MEANS YOU.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
beerbastard (766) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - NOV 24, 2005
Mild nose nothing stands out. Clear chestnut brown very inviting. Smooth medium bodied. Vanilla really comes thru, Finishes smooth too.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
grant (842) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - NOV 23, 2005
UPDATED: NOV 18, 2007 Nice deep brown red color. Quickly fading head. Smells like chocolate cherries with some flower and a light, pleasant nuttiness. The complex aroma finishes with light raspberry and vanilla. Flavor is tinitially a touch sweet, with oasty malts and a light hoppy acidity. Light spiciness not nearly as exuberant as in the aroma. Lingering finish that coats the mouth; the body is thick yet leaves your mouth feeling very clean. Mirthful alcohol warming.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
RedHaze (371) - Where the hell am I?, Nebraska, USA - NOV 22, 2005
From notes 16Nov05: Pours a clear dark amber color with a thick off-white head that fades quickly, and leaves behind just a little lacing. Smell; a little nutmeg, caramel, cherries. Very fruity and spicy smell. Taste; lots of spiced fruits, partuclary cherries. There’s some caramel, and just a litlle bit of a hop twang in the finish. Gets a little to sweet when it gets closer to room temp. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with just enough carbonation.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
hippie4beer (162) - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - NOV 20, 2005
Bottle. Perhaps my all time favorite winter brew. Pours a brown amber color with lingering head. Aroma of chocolate, nuts, and caramel. Flavor is mild with a spiced nutty finish. Silky on the palate. Drank this exclusively last winter. Excellent winter beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
DrunkAsASkunk (847) - Lynnwood, Washington, USA - NOV 19, 2005
This beer pours a murky orangey amber substance with a small white head and relatively nice levels of lacing. The aroma is pleasant..a 2004 bottle so you can smell the aging. Caramel, bread, nuts, vanilla and brown sugar in the nose. Flavor is fairly acetic with medium levels of carbonation. Incredilly barleywine-like mouthfeel. Silky and sickeningly sweet. Caramel and vanilla with a nutty-grainy finish. Dry and almost cottonmouth finish at times. Perhaps a hint of coriander or woodiness in the finish. Generally something I could only drink in very small amounts. Warming and dry.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
antzman (315) - Clarksville, Indiana, USA - NOV 16, 2005
2004. Poured a dark amber with little head. Aroma is of sweet malts with a little spice. The flavor is very subtle, with vanilla and some hard to nail down spices. Medium body does not linger too long on the palate. For a winter spiced beer, this was well above the average.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Rastacouere (6155) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 11, 2005
Murky copper, fully diminishing head. Barky and nutty malts suffer from a vanilla sweetness that takes the flavor lead. Very sweet in mouth too, faint floral aspects procure no balance, the malts come out grainier and grainier with each sip while cinnamon or another sweetish spice contributes more sweetness. Kinda one-dimensional for a spiced seasonal offering. Light-medium bodied, effetcive carbonation gives the impression of a better attenuation. I might have kept it a bit too long, it’s a 2004 bottle bought fom Julio’s last march. No oxidation flavors per se, but definitely some tame aspects, mostly the hops which are dull and unbalancing.

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