IrishBoy (3958) - Bakersfield, California, USA - MAY 7, 2013
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bomber from Ratman!!! Nose is pumpkin pie, with all the cardamon, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger even lacking the pumpkin. Cherry brown with a small beige head. Flavor is very spicy with a light bitterness.
RSRIZZO (1899) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - NOV 26, 2011
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
22oz bottle poured into a Tulip at 42į. Color is a deep brown with ruby showing in the light. Carbonation is light with a very small off white head. Aroma is a spicy roasted malt scent. Medium body that gives a smooth mouth feel. Flavor of nutmeg, clove, cinnamon and just a touch of coriander then some roasted malt and toffee. After taste is mildly bitter and surprisingly clean with just a bit of the spices hanging on. Overall itís pretty good for a Spiced brew, normally I donít like these Holiday spice brews because there over spiced, but this one is very well done.
tennessejed420 (927) - Denver, Colorado, USA - NOV 29, 2011
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
pours very dark red, almost brown, with small grey bubbly head. Aroma of carrot cake, caramel, cinnamon. Medium bodied, pretty smooth but somewhat thin finish. Flavor of molasses and toffee, overlayed with spices, cinnamon, nutmeg, and there is a fruitcake flavor. Pretty nice.
drjay44 (2969) - Salida, Colorado, USA - NOV 30, 2011
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Draft at a local. Pours a minimal, short duration, off white head, over a clear brown (SRM 30) body....nose is cinnamon, lighter clove, cardamom, slight dark roast malt (coffee, chocolate) touch of toffee/caramel......taste is dominated by cinnamon, clove, cardamom, with sensation of toffee/caramel sweetness, minimal hints of chocolate....mouth feel on the light of medium, carbonation low. The spices, although a major aroma and flavor component, were done with a lighter hand than in many others, leading to a more nearly balanced malt and spice combination than in many of this genre. BJCP 7/3/13/4/7
UncleKorm (1060) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - MAR 8, 2013
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bomber poured a clear deep reddish brown w/ a frothy off-white mostly diminishing head and excellent lacing. Med to big aromas of ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, caramel, and dried fruit. Initial flavor is a light sweet to a moderate bitter finish. Taste is a spicy mix of Christmas with toffee, cinnamon, ginger, clove, cardamom, star anise and toasted cereal. Medium bodied, dry texture, soft carbonation, and a lasting spice in the finish.
onceblind (5490) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUN 17, 2012
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Deep mahogany with a clear reddish tint, non-lasting light beige head. Nice winter-y aroma of cinnamon and clove with some nutmeg with a nice sweet plum/raisin maltiness. Flavor was a little light but the taste was at least well thought out. Nice tones of cinnamon and ginger play on a earthy sweet, slightly fruity palate, with some nutmeg toward the finish with a somewhat earthy peat tone. Kinda tastes like a spiced Scotch Ale.
arminjewell (8626) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - JAN 14, 2013
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Pour out of 22 oz bottle, dark brownish red with white head, aroma brought notes of ginger, cinnamon, slight cardamom, nice caramel, toffee, hints of dark fruits in there, slight molasses. Taste is a mix of sweet caramel, toffee, lots of spice with cinnamon, ginger, clove, some hints of cardamom, more spice notes that muddle a bit, finishing fairly spicy, bitter, slightly dry. Eh, much too over spiced but it is fairly easy to drink.
GarrettB (1223) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 31, 2013
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
January 1st, 2012 - A Christmas beer after Christmas is an instance of poor timing, but the style lasts long after the holiday season. As long as the ground is covered in Colorado snow and the Rocky Mountains are saluting with their snow capped peaks off to the West, these dark and malty beers still make for a great nightcap on a cold night. With its soft, pillow head and light brown color, Bristolís Christmas Ale looks ready for a a quiet winter night, with a fireplace providing the soundtrack. Christmas desserts unfurl from the top of the beer - cinnamon and clove, and a dry banana ester too, giving this a dry and raspy sweetness. The flavor is dry too, reminiscent of the neighboring Venetucci Pumpkin Ale. Itís dry and vegetal, like a gourd that was cut and then regrettably left out on the counter, forgotten for a day. Another strange flavor addition: shabu-shabu dipping sauce. Itís not quite soy sauce and itís not teriyaki sauce either, but itís packed full of umami side, and lends this Christmas ale some welcome depth of flavor. The aftertaste is spicy but short, and that odd shabu-shabu note simplifies down to a simple light soy sauce taste. Vegetal and deeply flavored, this is a brew that is curious for its lack of sugars and sweets. But I like this break from tradition. Indeed, thatís part of why Iím drinking a Christmas beer after the holiday period has expired. The taste isnít spectacular, but Bristolís Christmas Ale isnít typical either.
DenverLogan (867) - MileHi, Colorado, USA - JUL 20, 2013
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2014 From 22oz into a Corsendonk chalice.
Pours a light brown with modest head.
Aroma of cardamon, sage, clover, anise and dark malts.
Significant mouthfeel and modest carbonation.
Flavors of amber malts, burnt malts, sage, cardamon, rosemary, and other herbs. Iíve had this various times over the past six months and thought time might mellow out the spices, and it has a bit, but they are still big! Overall flavorful and tasty but a bit too heavy on the spices and herbs.
DEC 28, 2014 Update ~ OK, this beer is now 2 years old. Some of the spice has mellowed out but itís still big, but now the malts have also been reduced, but the carbonation is still big! Overall Iíd say two years of aging has helped and Iím raising the overall a tiny bit.
Sledutah (6046) - Utah, USA - MAR 27, 2014
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
22oz bottle picked up at Supermarket liquors
Pours clear dark mahogany with a small beige head and some lacing. Aroma of nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and ginger. Taste is sweet malts, cinnamon, ginger and herbal bitterness
A good Christmas ale, lots of aroma but the taste is kind of muttled together.