Nate (3740) - Indiana, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 19, 2002
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Very malty and smooth aroma with a nice sweetness. Dark brown-red with lacing off-white head. Low medium carb and medium watery body. Nice malty character, hoppy but not too bitter. Molasses/fruity taste, with nutty finish/after. Good taste and not too sweet.
MikeF (538) - Cleveland, Ohio, USA - DEC 17, 2002
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
The aroma is of fuit malt and nutmeg. Thick and smooth drinking. The alcohol is non detectable.
urbnhautebourg (997) - Annapolis, Maryland, USA - DEC 15, 2002
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Complex malt, by turns nutty, sweet, fruity smoky and spicy and all very nicely integrated under a delicate hop nose. Not brilliant, but a tasty tipple.
Darkover (1517) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - DEC 13, 2002
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: DEC 24, 2006 Rerate: Medium beige head, dark amber color. Sweet toffee, chocolate and hop aroma. Flavor is sweet, bitter, nutty and some alcohol. Finish is bittersweet. Seems to have alot more hops this year.
Andrew196 (1091) - Katy, Texas, USA - DEC 9, 2002
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Deep red color, nice head. Sweet hoppy aroma. Flavor was balanced expertly with a sweet finish. As it warmed, I got notes of cereal in the finish. A good beer but nothing to make it stand out too much.
AceOfHearts (1375) - Mountain View, California, USA - DEC 8, 2002
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark mahogany color, nice head. It was like a weaker version of the Sweetwater Festive ALe I had two beers before: sort of a ginger taste but lighter. Nice, somewhat bready finish. not bad!
fly (1417) - austin, Tejas, Alabama, USA - DEC 7, 2002
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
I would most likely give this higher marks, but like an idiot I’m drinking while still trying to get over a cold. It does seem to have some medicinal qualities in the strength. Nice malty - the strenghth does come through a bit. I had wondered, not seeing it on the bottle, but here. Look forward to having another with a clear head.
MilkmanDan (1943) - Eagan, Minnesota, USA - DEC 6, 2002
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Nice clear, deep brown. Nose malty, smells quite strong. Odd soapiness, but doesn’t overly detract. Great sweet malts, nutty, chewy, toffee-ish. Sugar somewhat reminscent of Belgian candy sugars. Slightly mineral in the finish. Oddly sour at the end, but it doesn’t cause problems with the enjoyment.
hopscotch (9215) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - DEC 6, 2002
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JUN 5, 2003 This beer mega-macadoscious rocks!!!
The aroma is of rich malt, dark fruits and chocolate.
A crystal clear, deep mohogany color. Handsome.
God, I'm a geek. I just called a beer handsome... and it's not the first time.
The flavor is to die for. Malty and slightly sweet up front. Well-balanced with a whisper of tartness and bitterness on the backside.
Full-bodied with an oily mouthfeel. Lively carbonation. Medium-length, slightly acidic, mostly dry finish. Incredible beer! English Strong Ale? Ehhh!!! I'm not the categorizing expert that those who run the site and brew the beer are, but this brew reminded me of a Belgian Dubbel. Whatever. Drink one.
bluemeow76 (693) - Lewis Center, Ohio, USA - DEC 5, 2002
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Very very good. An excellent blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and ginger blended with a nice orange citrusy flavor. Definitey a close 2nd when it comes to winter brews - Barley’s still being the best.