mikenodak (150) - Fargo, North Dakota, USA - DEC 23, 2002
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Piney aroma, fruity, spicy, and malty taste, alcohol cleverly hidden behind the hops. A good X-mas.
drywallman (325) - Lake in the Hills, Illinois, USA - DEC 23, 2002
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
2002 vintage: It had a raisiny, and current like aroma as experienced in the past. Had the deep amber almost red color as advertised. A little vanilla was detected, and it seemed a touch ísmokierí in flavor than in the past. Maybe due to this being higher in alcohol content that what Iíve been drinking lately. Definitely a winner again, and a seasonal favorite from here in Chicagoland.
joet (2052) - Santa Rosa, California, USA - DEC 20, 2002
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Surprisingly good. Beautiful deep amber color, rich malty aroma, perfectly spiced with a touch of clove and vanilla, easy to drink, and hops you can appreciate from top to bottom. A mild form of the style -- at 6.8% and as something you can see right through, this is a light beer out West -- but itís still tasty.
muzzlehatch (4424) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - DEC 20, 2002
3.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap, 2002. A surprise, didnít expect this level of quality from this brewer (maybe 3-year old memories ought not to be trusted?), but its a top-notch seasonal, with its weak nose (smoky bar might help explain that) the only detriment. Translucent copper; lovely creamy head. Nose though weak has some nice spiciness. Flavor seems to be somewher between the robust, spicy-sweet darker holiday brews and the hoppier apricot/orangey type, and its a great balance. Vanilla, maple, fruits, spices, mmm. Wonderful mouthfeel, luscious like a great ripe pear but with a nice kick. Gotta get some bottles before heading back to VT.
Vikingbeau (67) - Albertville, Minnesota, USA - DEC 20, 2002
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
She has a small, off-white head, with a fair amount of lacing. She is a little cloudy in appearance color is an orangish ruby. her taste is moderately sweet with a generous dose of bitterness..though not too bitter for the dirty ladies. Solid..! :)
Zach Diesel (906) - Portland, Oregon, USA - DEC 19, 2002
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
spicy hop nose, light ruby hue, hop sweetness with a spicy biscuity finish
khayman70 (154) - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - DEC 18, 2002
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 20/20
I love the Christmas brews and this is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. I love the spiciness, it reminds my of the holiday season and I will have this every year that I can.
P-tor44 (886) - Anchorage, Alaska, USA - DEC 17, 2002
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
ReRate: full hop bouquet, looks like watered down blood with a small but lasting head. wierd spicey feel that works the inside of my cheeks. very spicey
CaptainCougar (7129) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - DEC 16, 2002
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Very fresh, hoppy, even salty aroma coming from the dark copper body. Kinda tastes like a pale ale with lots of caramel malt. All of the spice is from the hops. The finish is crisp and refreshing. This is one of Goose Islandís best.
JMerritt (1745) - Macomb, Illinois, USA - DEC 15, 2002
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: FEB 17, 2013 2012 version. Dark chestnut with red highlights and quite a few suspended particulates. Tan head is large and fully lasting, leaving frothy, mashmallow-y lacing. Aroma of ripened dates, rich caramel malt, cinnamon graham cracker, molasses. Moderately sweet flavor, rich ripened fruit (plum, raisins, mild banana), light alcohol, nutmeg and mild roast (old coffee) in the finish. Full bodied with nice, soft yet sturdy carbonation. Not at all what I remember this being, although it has been a decade.
12/15/2002 3:59:28 PM
Rerate: Dark red, tan head. Head had good lacing, but fell quickly. Aroma is very sugary sweet, with mild hops. Mild hop initial flavor. Much more watery than I remember, and little spice. Light coffee-ish aftertaste, but not much. Not as rich and flavorful as 2001ís. 7/4/5/3/15, 3.4 total