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Mendocino Winter Ale (04/05 - Porter)

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RATINGS: 136   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.68   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
This Select Special Edition Winter Ale is a full-flavored "Warming" ale. It is brewed with a luscious blend of chocolate and carmel malts. Balanced with generous amounts of Warrior and Cascade hops, this rich, creamy Winter Ale has as smooth, robust finish, and a delicate warming spiciness. Note: brewed at the Saratoga facility primarily for the east coast market.


3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
notalush (4835) - Denver, Colorado, USA - DEC 11, 2004
Opaque with dark tan head and sticky lacing - aroma of coffee, caramel, some spice and a hint of smoke - spicy to start, with medium mouthfeel and a hint of oiliness - cocoa is present throughout, as a growing hop presence, some woody and smoky flavors develop - finish is dry, leaving hops and cocoa mixing surprisingly well - a bit of caramel and toffee flavor springs up on the back of the tongue long after the swallow - a nice take on a porter indeed, and another beer that is generating respect within me for a brewery I once thought was really lame.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Suttree (5131) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 11, 2004
Black, brown head. Piney, herbal odor, with notes of coffee. Smoky, coffee flavors up front, then a nice herbal taste - maybe sage? I couldnít quite put my finger on it. I dunno, maybe a hint of ginger, too. The it slides into a piney, resiney finish. Note of black walnuts appear as it warms. This reminds me of a poor manís Alpha Klaus, which is fine with me, because Iím a poor man.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Hangover (1058) - Atlanta, Alabama, USA - DEC 9, 2004
Almost completely black pour, with a creamy tan head. Mostly chocolate in the aroma with a faint whiff of hops and molassas. Taste is a weird combination of chocolate and citrus hops. In fact, the citrus lingers into the aftertaste. Nice mouthfeel. At the bottom end of medium bodied. Not really warming or spicy, but I think itís pretty good. A rather interesting take on a porter. Very drinkable. Not bad at all.

2.3
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
beaconstreet (811) - Washington DC, USA - DEC 8, 2004
Again the Nutley Buy Rite surprises with its random, shifting stock of singles. Fragrant and alcoholy, but off-kilter. Obnoxiously dark and grainy in appearance. Some hints of roasted caramel. Occaisional taste of celery. Ugh. Not my top recommendation for a winter beer.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
JPDIPSO (4956) - Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 7, 2004
Near black with hints of brown on the edges. Smaller lid of creamy tan bubbles. Dark chocolate fudge mixed with caramel and touch of citric hops (normally this mix has not worked for me in other brews, but they do seem to have a nice balance here). Light touches of peat and smoke as well. Smooth feel, but seems a touch watery. Robust porter seems to fit the bill here. Lots of dark bitter chocolate with hints of sweet pale malt and caramel. Some acidic hops mid to late quaff that seem to grow on the palate through the linger. I didnít expect this from this brewery, but am pleased.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
MaiBockAddict (1497) - Good Beer Bar Deprived, New Jersey, USA - DEC 6, 2004
UPDATED: DEC 7, 2004 Bottle. Deep dark brown with a tan head. Almost stout colored. Aroma is a rich blend of hops, chocolate, coffee, and carmel. Flavor is smooth with rich coffee, milk chocolate, and hop flavor and bitterness. This is real nice, and the hops are fresh. Hoppy roastiness lingers. Reminds me of the FFF Alpha Klaus Porter, and a side by side is in order.


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