HogTownHarry (6042) - Toronto (Harbourfront), Ontario, CANADA - FEB 17, 2011
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
February 19, 2010 tasting with blankboy, garthicus, gregclow, jerc & mabel. My 750ml bottle - 2009 vintage. Clear deep amber with a large fluffy off-white head. Spicy aroma of sweet caramel malt, yeasty but dry - most interestingly this has a lot of cereal character, even some black pepper notes in the flavour, along with very mild alcohol and spice/caramel sweetness - the yeast/spice character begins to assert strongly as it warms. A nice thick, chewy mouthfeel to this one, perhaps a little under-carbonated, but good complexity for my part - classic Christmas spice with a welcome addition of strong grain - I liked it a lot.
brokensail (10547) - Orange County, California, USA - FEB 16, 2011
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
A: The beer pours amber in color with a very, very large tan head.
S: There is no mistaking the spices/flavorings in this beer. Tons of ginger right away followed by clove and nutmeg. The cinnamon and all spice there, but seemingly not as intense as some of the other additives. Underneath it all, there is a decent enough bread and toffee character.
T: Things are pretty much the same on the palate. Lots of ginger, with an almost gingerbread type of flavor. There is a pleasing sweetness that works well with the typical winter types of spices used in this beer.
M: The body is medium with a moderate to high level of carbonation.
D: For a spiced winter beer, this was very nicely done. While the ginger was the strongest of the flavors, none of them were overdone.
jsmerig (1199) - Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 31, 2010
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Smells of Cinnamon and Nutmeg. 2010 Version. Pours a dark amber color with a bubbly head (off white). Flavor starts off with a malty sweetness quickly replaced by spice. Cinnamon is prevalent and in the end it dries up with reminant spiciness. Interesting.
GAManiac (1944) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - DEC 25, 2010
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Big thanks to Alex for this bottle, 2010 vintage.
Pours a murky reddish brown that shows through a hazy amber when held up to light. There’s lots of carbonation and a big fluffy beige head that shows decent retention and lacing.
Aroma is spicy with cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. There is a sweet caramel malt and cocoa presence as well.
The taste starts with an initial cinnamon and nutmeg tingling on the tongue with a big yeasty bread backbone before the ginger and other spices leave a spicy burn on the palate in the finish.
The mouthfeel is very lively with strong carbonation - light to medium bodied for the style.
This is definitely a spice-heavy winter warmer but nothing is overpowering and the body keeps it very drinkable.
Leafs93 (1640) - Dunmore, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 22, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
On the 9th day of Christmas.....I had a 2009 Sly Fox Christmas Ale. Pours copper reddish with a big rocky tan head. Aroma is spices, nutmeg, cinnamon and caramel. Taste is sweet with the spices coming through very nicely. I think this is a pretty solid Christmas brew, I wasn’t sure how it would cellar for a year being only 5%. However it held up well.
JohnnyMummbles (151) - Pitman, New Jersey, USA - DEC 20, 2010
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
750ml bottle pours a rich brown to copper beer with a huge tan head that sticks around. Aroma has strong notes of clove and nutmeg upfront and finishes with sweet malts. Taste is somewhat spicie but very well balanced. A great Christmas beer that is very flavorful and enjoyable.
ScoWRee (374) - Perkiomen, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 18, 2010
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
Aroma is subtle. Maybe a hint of yeast. The pour has a huge tan foamy head with a color of iced tea. Taste is slightly watery. I’m not getting the ginger, clove, cinammon, etc. here. Taste and aroma very discreate. I wish I could give this a better rating. It’s just not working for me.
Jow (2006) - New York, USA - DEC 14, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
On tap at Stags Head. Pours a dark orangey brown. Tastes off all spice, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, some malt. Really quite pleasant winter ale.
Steeeve (326) - Ambler, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 13, 2010
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Dark copper pour with a thin white head. Lots of cinnamon and allspice in the nose, with a bit of caramel sweetness. Flavor is definitely loaded with cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice. Some sweetness. Carbonation is average. Not a bad offering. Tastes good but pretty middle of the road. I prefer my Christmas ales with a bigger body.
Boliv (1148) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 12, 2010
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
750mL corked and caged bottle. Pours clear, dark orangey red, with a foamy 2-finger dark beige head. Aromas of caramel, raisin, grass, and some subtle spices. Flavor is cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, with a little bitterness on the back end. High carbonation, lively. Alright, pretty heavily carbonated; it’s kind of like a pumpkin ale without the pumpkin.