chriso (7513) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - DEC 27, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Rich copper colour. The hops hit you as soon as you lift the glass. Positively explodes with hops. Sure, thereís a bit of spice, but this is really all about the hops. Big piney, resinous hops, with citrus and tropical fruits joining in on the palate. Quite bitter - some might find it too sharp. - but a dream for hopheads. Iím a hophead. It may be one-dimensional, but I love it. On tap at the South Street Brewery, Charlottesville.
brentfeesh (1208) - Mansfield, Ohio, USA - DEC 27, 2004
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: DEC 1, 2005 2004 version. The color was golden brown with leanings towards amber or at least a bit of orange. Small white head, which quickly dissipated to nothing. The aroma was somewhat sweet with a malt-spice-mustiness. The flavor started with hops (pine) and ended with hops (grapefruit). Nice and bitter. I also detected nutmeg and a bit of malt (which was more present as a mouth feel). Some alcohol warmth at the finish. Enjoyable. Iíll have to keep my eyes open for it again.
2005 version. Amber with a bit of spotty lacing. I noted a spicy (wood and cinnamon) and lightly citrus aroma this year. Iíll agree at least somewhat with my 2004 notes in that there is a great deal of bitterness and the malt (while present) is there more in mouth feel. Noted more spicy hops this year and a bit of wood. Still agree with the pine presence. The only thing Iím going to change in this rating is the appearance. Iím bumping it to 4.
mrfosters (17) - New Jersey, USA - DEC 26, 2004
2.9 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
I was really dissappointed with this years version. I was looking forward to that spicy. hoppy .winter warmer . Instead I got an average IPA.Nothing as special as I rembered from past versions. Maybe I got a sixer that was mishandeled. Not horrible ,but definitely a dissappointment.
dortmunder (961) - Herdecke, GERMANY - DEC 25, 2004
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottled. Clear amber/red colour, big foamy head. Honeyish aroma with notes of cranberries. Honey taste, which is spicy, fruity, especially cranberries and leaves a somewhat hoppy, bitter finish. Itīs a very decent ale. I liked it.
maeib (8749) - Wootton, Northampton, Northamptonshire, ENGLAND - DEC 25, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: SEP 22, 2010 Bottled. An amber coloured IPA with a good white head. The taste and smell are very hoppy with melons and grapefruits noted. A kick in the throat beer which makes you feel you need to add a spoonful of sugar. I really need to get more of these US IPAs to start to appreciate the nuances. No doubt a fine beer but still a bit of a struggle for this English palate.Score 3.4
Subsequent ratings scored 4.0, 4.0 and 3.7. Average becomes 3.8
MillStreetMan (152) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 24, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Fantastic! Everything, from the smell right through to its lingering flavour, is exceptional, and probably the best Sierra Nevada Iíve had. Itís complex and engaging, with hints of spice and sweetness without being cloying, and a good kick of bitterness. Excellent.
pjk33 (390) - Sligo - Curllsville Heights, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 23, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draught. Kaya in the Pittsburgh Strip. This is true Sierra Nevada... Great hop aroma, but with a great malty sweetness that really makes this beer a quality product. Nose is hoppy and spicy... God I love hops. Pours a deep and dark golden orange with almost a spicy look to it. Mouthfeel is full and carbonated with a joyous burn. Full malty hops and spices galore in the taste. I love Sierra Nevada... You guys rock.
LiamPatrick16 (124) - Montgomery, New York, USA - DEC 22, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
poured amber color had a nice big head. the lacing stuck to the glass through out the experience.full of hops and spices could of passed as a spice beer. alcohol and spices in the aroma and taste. overall very nice beer espically in the winter
sdechert (13) - The Colony, Texas, USA - DEC 21, 2004
3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Aroma hints of oranges and spice. Head is medium and color is on the orange side of deep amber. Initially hoppy, slightly sweet. Strong finish with a long lingering aftertaste that only went away with a mint. Not bad, but a little to harsh to be an every day beer.
DKlovesbeer (172) - Sarasota, Florida, USA - DEC 18, 2004
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours an increadible hazy red Christmas color. This beerís merangue-like head is massive, foamy, pillowy, and fragrent; it settles slowly alowing the aroma to rise and fill the area around the glass. A fine example of how beer should look. Aroma is simply outstanding. Agressive hops fragerance stands out while malt and alcohol linger in the air. Notes of grapefruit, Christmas tree, and sweet fruits such as cherry and plum dance in the aroma of this fine beer. Flavor starts off as an intense barrage of hops followed by a mellow wave of malt sweetness. Notes of alcohol, fresh flowers, grapefruit, citrus seeds, pine, tobacco, cedar, and cherry fill the palate with a gustatory colage that is both seductive and satisfying. Finishes bitter and savory. Just allow the flavor to linger a few moments before the next sip. And the next. Overall, I wish this beer was available year round, itís one of the finest beers Iíve ever had the pleasure of drinking. Honestly, this beer is cause for celebration!