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RATINGS: 1135   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.46/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 207   ABV: 6.9%
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 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
hopdog (11560) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 29, 2004
Vintage 2002. Poured a dark, hazy amber color with a large, frothy, off white head. Malty smells. Light tastes - malty and sweet. Tastes are too light for me to really pick anything specific, other than some sweetness out. Not sure if it lost some aroma and tastes in the aging process (tasted 2002 vintage on 6/29/04). Not bad but then again, nothing special stood out.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
JMerritt (1941) - Macomb, Illinois, USA - JUN 16, 2004
Winter 2003 version sampled in June 2004. Orangish-red with many very tiny suspended particles. Massive rocky, yellow-white head with fantastic staying power. Spicy aroma: cinnamon, all spice and ginger along with sugary toffees and caramels. Malty, rich flavor with juniper berries, toffee, lightly roasted malts, minty herbals, and a touch of lightly bitter hops and even dark chocolate towards the end. Sweet, crisp finish. The spices and the fruity-sweetness work wonderfully together. I was skeptical of the "Gold Metal Winner" mention on the label, but I was pleasantly surprised.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
daalamar (405) - new albany, Indiana, USA - JUN 15, 2004
2003 release... I picked a few of these up out of the discount bin at a local beverage store fo a buck each. Pours a beautiful mahogany color with a small but lasting head. Aroma is very malty sweet with some butter and vanilla. Flavor is malty, and lingeringly sweet. It seems that any hop flavors have settled out and are almost undecernable now. Very much like a mellow dopplebock. Easily drinkable, but nothing to rave about.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
duff (5484) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - JUN 1, 2004
Bottle. Barley wine style ale. Sweet raisin and syrup, piney hops, spicy. A bit too sticky for me, but its not bad at all.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - APR 24, 2004
The color took some time to categorize, not quite violet and muddier than red, magenta? Off-white head, and an aroma full of sweetness, soft and candyish. Light texture, but an immediate sensation of syrupy, caramely sweetness. Strong vanilla component, too. Not as spicy as I'd been informed. Dazzling finish, though, which sits and swims in the mouth for as long as it pleases. I held back on high marks, though, for the vanilla candy aspect was just not for me.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
beerinmarch (2830) - Washington, USA - APR 23, 2004
UPDATED: AUG 28, 2005 Perfect winter beer. Dark red color, malty, sweet, and rich. Carmel Flavor.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Ida7999 (105) - Milford, Massachusetts, USA - APR 7, 2004
amber, reddish color with a nice foamy head and a good amount of carbonation, aroma is spicy with malt and definite hints of apples and vanilla; very different flavor, both sweet and spicy spices hit first followed by a burst of an apple/vanilla finish, very smooth

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
jeffin7 (613) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - MAR 23, 2004
Aroma of mild cinnamon, chocolate, and biscuit. The flavor a bit of chocolate and biscuit with soft cinnamon and ginger . It is a bit thin but that makes it all the more drinkable. Nice alternative to Anchor OSA.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
TheBeerGod (6010) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - MAR 21, 2004
2003 Vintage. Dark reddish brown body with a medium tan head. Spicy hop aroma and an underlying sweetness seem to be the main culprits here. I can't pick out exactly what the sweetened notes remind me of. Possibly fruit, but I can't be certain. The taste leans more towards cocoa and hops which completely threw me for a loop. The mouthfeel is very creamy as well. Not too bad, but the hops detract from this just a smidge. Still, this is pretty good, although nothing extraordinary.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Crash (532) - Macomb, Illinois, USA - MAR 12, 2004
I had a cold so I didn't smell much of anything. It had a redish brown look with medium frothy off white head. Sweet flavor that finishes sweet.

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