Brewed by Shepherd Neame
Style: English Strong Ale
Faversham, England


on tap

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RATINGS: 253   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.16   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%
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Bottle: Filtered.
There’s a spicy signature to this incredibly complex cockle-warming winter ale. The nose is reminiscent of raisins, dates and molasses while the palate is vinous with tannin-like notes of leather, vanilla, apricots and a hint of rustic Armagnac on the finish. An awesome after-dinner drop.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
sayravai (4673) - Helsinki, FINLAND - DEC 12, 2008
Bottled. Clear amber with a smallish head and some lace. Aroma of strong, stingy-herby hops and some citrus fruitiness. Buttery-malty, caramely flavor with sweet graininess emerging in the middle, followed by dryish, citrusy-herby hops. Alcohol is well hidden, but slightly warming. Medium body with slightly fizzy-foamy carbonation. Once again, quite similar to everything else from this brewery - and no signs of Christmas besides the label.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
stouby (3726) - Holbæk, DENMARK - DEC 7, 2008
Bottle at Benny. Amber with a off white head. Aroma modereate malty, caramel, and hoppy. Flavor moderate sweet and nice clean bitterness. Light body despite the strength.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
beerlady (556) - lucerne, SWITZERLAND - DEC 2, 2008
bought in lucerne switzerland in the drinks of the world shop at railwaystation reddish glowing copper with a rather quickly dissapearing head smells malty and hoppy and some dried fruit tasts malty hoppy and fruity and some caramel aftertaste has some good bitterness but fruityness too i like it a beerwho has both in it fruityness

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
bobinlondon (1256) - Harrow, Greater London, ENGLAND - NOV 29, 2008
Bottle from Lidl. Amber with white head. Very easy drinking forit’s strength. Very "Sheps" in flavour but smoother and more refined than is usual. Very good for pasturised bottled ale.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Bragesnak (5387) - Aarhus, DENMARK - NOV 29, 2008
From Voldby, DK. Bottled, 291108. Amber with small white head. Aroma of caramel and hop spices - grass. Flavor is sweet with a nice bitterness

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
JorisPPattyn (7907) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - NOV 17, 2008
Amber –gold beer, with little head. Ureum (dry hops), liquorice in the nose. Sweet beer, with cookies’ flavour, and a wee bit of oxidation to boot on the sweetness. A little cakey warming up. Not very robust MF. Too sweet, too much old malts.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 8/20
charlotte (4207) - rødovre, DENMARK - OCT 30, 2008
Amber colout with small white head.Aroma of caramel and malt,feels a little weak and mild spicey with smooth mouth feels and soft finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
DruncanVeasey (7191) - NUNEATON, Top 18, Warwickshire, ENGLAND - OCT 20, 2008
UPDATED: FEB 17, 2012 1)Well, it is October 20th. 2008 version from Lidl with the same label, ABV, description etc as 2007. Bright shining red ringed with beige. Jellied strawberry fruit aroma as commercially described, overlaid with sensible musty tea-like hedgerow hoppy notes. Brings to mind Flying Saucers- simultaneously papery and (a bit) sherbety. Instantly recognisable as a SN clear-bottled pasteurised effort. Stale cardboardy cooked notes to the fore, redeemed by...well, cherryish alcohol, berry fruit, cinnamon. Some chalky apple traces have survived The Boil. Thought this was just gonna be another tedious dead bottled bitter from Shep Neame, and it is. But a good one. 2) Bottle aboard P&O ferry, 16/02/12. Clear copper slicked with cream. Disappointing hay, caramel, apple and berry fruits aroma; a crumb of cinder toffee. Eye watering fizz, metallic streaks, fragipane, sherbet on digestives. Sheps, but stronger. Empty after 4days on the Belgians. 636312.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
highlandlad (1416) - Blue Mountains, AUSTRALIA - SEP 26, 2008
An unusually hoppy Christmas ale out of Kent. Not sure the high sugar content and herbal finish pair that well but it’s very easy seasonal drinking. A coppery cove with a shallow head. Sugary-sweet aroma of sugarcane, crystal malt, that pasteurised boiled lolly residue and a sprinkle of white pepper. Medium body, moderate carbonation - the overall effect is almost syrupy. A very smooth concoction with the alcohol well concealed until the warming, spicy finish that you’d expect in a Christmas ale. Sticky dates, figs and oxidised sherry notes. Quite herbal in the swallow and unusually bitter for the style. Challenger hops? Goldings? An interesting ale but not a total success IMO. (500ml bottle from Camperdown Cellars.)

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
austone (1062) - Turku; Pori, FINLAND - SEP 19, 2008
Nice deep amber, slightly lacing white head. Very fruity, very SN nose; fruitcake, ripe banana and bready malts. Little caramelly, herbal hoppy flavor with a softly bitter fruitcake finish. Little warming alcohol. A tad more firmer version of Late Red, not that typical christmas brew.

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