BBB63 (5741) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - DEC 3, 2003
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: NOV 18, 2005 2005 Bottle: While the beer is still quite hoppy, I am getting a chalky and musty character on both the nose and palate that subdued my overall experiance this time around. Perhaps it is still too green for me, will try another and let a few age as well. Dropping my rating for this .3 points.
Original Rating: My bottle of aged 2002: Slightly hazy reddish brown hue with a creamy off-white head and very good lace. The big hoppy aroma when it was new has mellowed but still very noticeable, the malt seems more pronounced. Also detected some spice and butterscotch on the nose. The initial taste is hoppy and crisp with a lingering bitterness. Good malt sweetness found underneath with a touch of citrus. This medium to full bodied brew has a lively mouthfeel, a bit chalky. Aging has mellowed this beer but only to some degree, still hoppy and nice. I will age a 2003 batch and hopefully rerate this next year.
lilannie (384) - Adamstown, Maryland, USA - DEC 2, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Aroma: Has a kind of spicy, fruity smell with hints of a liquid amoxicillian flavor (sort of like bubble gum). I could also smell a bit of black licorice.
Appearance: Reddish-Brown, almost mohogany in color.
Flavor: Dry, very hoppy, with a fruity aftertaste that lingers
Palate: Smooth and tingly at the front of my tongue.
tsarman (794) - Northern, New Jersey, USA - DEC 2, 2003
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: JAN 13, 2008 Rerate. A little better than I remember. Nice amount of hops. Not too piny.
Ugghh. Too perfumy. I had nice color, but I prefer others of the style more.
3fourths (7797) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - DEC 1, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAR 22, 2004 I finally got my hands on Rogue #30 for me... it has a deep brown and red appearance with a medium tan head. Smells of sweet west coast hops, wood, pine, scotch... a good aroma, similar to SNCA 2003. Warm and woody mixed with an abundance of sweet hops. Dry as hell, and it's sitting there laughing at me for thinking it's in the 60-70 IBU range when it's only at 40. What is the deal with that? No big deal. Thank you Rogue, you made another great beer, and I always enjoy winter/Xmas beers.
bb (6695) - Alamo, California, USA - NOV 30, 2003
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. A dark brown and reddish beer with a medium beige head on top. The aroma is of good pine mixed with some sweet malts. The flavor has strong hop bitterness with a bit of a roasty malt base. Definately more in the grapefruit and pine taste than a balanced beer, but there's enough of a complex malt backbone so that it doesn't seem out of place in this dark beer - well, maybe you need to be a hophead to think that. As you keep drinking there is some spicey flavor to it, but very subtle and can easily get lost with the hops. The hop flavor just stays forever.
VAYankee (327) - Virginia, USA - NOV 29, 2003
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Dark reddish brown brew with an offwhite head. Strong pine scented hoppiness. Initially flavor has a very mild maltiness that quickly disappears. This is followed by a sharp spicyness. Aftertaste is a bitter and piney.
haddon90 (1384) - Denver, Colorado, USA - NOV 29, 2003
3.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Cloudy copper/amber/ruby pour with a thick tan head. Aroma full of hops, spice, and fruit. Bitter taste. Not the greatest, but it was decent. Could work on the balance a little bit. Too watery as well.
carboloader (660) - Houston, Texas, USA - NOV 25, 2003
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours a transparent dark amber with thick foamy yellow head. Excellent lacing. Aroma of cascade hops with spruce and some pine. Some malt tones as well. Flavor is same -- some initial malt and then serious quick hops followed by quick bitter finish. Seems very well balanced to me, for a hop-infused strong ale. Not too sweet, unlike some Christmas brews. I'm thinking this would be a great regular IPA (or even a double IPA). Am wondering what makes it a Christmas brew. No spice or added sweetness. One of my new favorites.
drinkbeer (281) - Redondo Beach, California, USA - NOV 25, 2003
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: DEC 29, 2006 2003 reserve. Awesome dark clear ruby-red color, sparkly tan head. citrus hop aroma. a hop-heavy beer without much spice. bitterness lingers on sides of tongue.slight roasted malt flavor. Reminds me of a less piney arrogant bastard. However, I would prefer more spice and alcohol in this christmas brew.
2006 bottle. Same as before, but let it warm some. Got it? Ok, now check out the subtle peach notes. I kid you not. They are in there.
Yankovitch333 (612) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - NOV 25, 2003
3.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Pours a dark reddish brown with a thin tan head. Not much aroma, but perhaps my allergies are acting up. Very hoppy and bitter, but perhaps a bit bland for a seasonal brew. It's not exactly what I was expecting.