overall
89
97
style
RATINGS: 2124   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
This is our special ale from the brewers at Anchor. It is sold only from early November to mid-January. The Ale’s recipe is different every year, but the intent with which we offer it remains the same: joy and celebration of the newness of life. Since ancient times, trees have symbolized the winter solstice when the earth, with its seasons appears born anew.

Editor’s Note: due to the significant similarity in style and strength from year to year (despite potential differences in the exact spice blend), this beer is no longer separated by vintage.

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4
grikmok (132) - Columbia, Missouri, USA - DEC 18, 2007
Pours to a frothy, off-white, thick head. The aroma was complex and actually had a hint of eucalyptus spice. Flavor was complex and spicy. The finish was yeasty. Had a very good experience. Will definitely buy again.

3.3
mwelsh13 (499) - Maryland, USA - DEC 18, 2007
Deep brown, almost opaque pour. "Guiness" type head. Laces nicely around the glass. Bread like and spice aroma. Dry on the tongue, almost astringent. Nice full mouth feel with a tart aftertaste. Cinnamon/nutmeg/ginger taste. Hops bitterness more in the aftertaste than in the initial. Almost a slick taste to it. Not undesirable, just not expected. I definitely liked 2006 more. Wish I would have kept more of it. But, this was a nice beer overall.

3.4
nimbleprop (8949) - SouthWest, Washington, Washington DC, USA - DEC 18, 2007
2007 Vintage out of a magnum. Poured a watery, translucent deep brown with purple hues and a foamy, lasting white head, Aroma was mild, spice, yeast, heavy malts and dried/dark fruit. Flavor was similar, dark fruits, heavy malt, also touches of biscuit, grain, and cookie spice. Finish was watery, mild and dry. Drank the 2004 in the same night and this was no where close to the ’04, but this was a well balanced, drinkable holiday beer.

3.3
Egon (478) - Gothenburg, SWEDEN - DEC 18, 2007
Draught. Black, small white head. Spicy and dry. The spices dominate, maybe a bit too much? Is it ginger? Medium body. Interesting beer but some might not like it due to the Christmas spices.

3.6
jeg (114) - Austin, Texas, USA - DEC 17, 2007
Very spicy armoa and taste, ruby black color. Cloves cloves everywhere. Nicer than I would have thought after hearing how spicy this was.

3.4
fattibobatti (246) - Tallahassee, Florida, USA - DEC 17, 2007
sampled at liquorloft tallahassee. poured black with lots of carbonation, reminds me of soda. aroma is light but still pleasant mix of christmas herbs, nutmeg and something sweet. taste is much more defined, it took me a second but i found it to be gingerbread cookies in the finish. the start is a spices and bread. body is watery and the most unpleasant aspect.

3.2
Proteus (98) - FINLAND - DEC 17, 2007
2007 bottle. Dark brown with a light brown and thick head. I can’t really get a distinct aroma from the beer, very malty and some spicy hints (almost like raisins) aroma. The aroma does evolve to something close to tar during the drinking experience but doesn’t give anything special. Flavor is a deep mixture of malt and spicy bitterness, the hops are at a good level here. Also coffee and chestnut are some of the tastes I can put my finger on. Although it should be a seasonal drink I see it as a normal brown ale but it’s got a bit of more freshness in it. Interesting but nothing special.

3.1
SirSlarty (68) - Reading, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 16, 2007
Looks and smells almost like a brown ale. Frothy tan head. Looks great. Tastes good too. Surprised me. Major hints of apple and other fruits.

3.1
Canadianlush (169) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - DEC 16, 2007
Poured much darker than I thought it would. Almost like a porter to echo Strykzone’s comments with a full tan head. Sweet aroma of something that I can’t make out. Taste is full, sugrary and lingers. Not something I’ll pick up every year. Kind of a let down considering how reliable the guys at Anchor are.

3.3
Strykzone (7806) - Wood River, Illinois, USA - DEC 16, 2007
Pours like a porter. Body is almost black with red highlights and a medium sized light brown head. Aroma is malt and vanilla with some roastiness. Flavor is mixed and just a bit confused. It is pretty well balanced and features some mild coffee, caramel, nuts, dark fruit, and some tart hop. An aftertaste of dry malt and hops singes the throat and tongue. This beer is flavorful and interesting but tries to do too much.


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