overall
89
97
style
RATINGS: 2110   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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4.1
Luneylane (193) - Taipei City, TAIWAN - NOV 30, 2016
A bottle from Bar Eleven near Tai Power station, drunk at home. Aroma: nutty, malty. Appearance: opaque dark brown, respectable tan head. Palate: full-bodied and thick. Lightly carbonated, very complex at the end. Taste: delicious, malty, almost buttery. I like it, a successful seasonal offering!

3
oskitarjarrita (50) - Sabadell, SPAIN - NOV 29, 2016
Botella. Cerveza de navidad. Tostada ligera y algo especiada. No mucho alcohol y fàcil de beber.

2.9
chadski (140) - California, USA - NOV 27, 2016
Very nice pour and nice deep dark color. Flavors are not the greatest with a slight hoppy bitterness. Will not be getting again. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.8
Bulk_Carrier (6065) - Vermont, USA - NOV 27, 2016
Treated as a winter warmer, this was poured into a mug. The appearance was a dark brown close to black color with a great looking two finger white to off white foamy head. Slowly dissipates. Mild stringy lacing. The aroma leads with malty rich milk chocolate, and then subtle dark chocolate. Some graham cracker, subtle cinnamon, and vanilla also make a decent presence, ends with some dark fruits and brown sugar. The flavor leans to the sweet side combining all of those notes of the aroma. Nicely blended aftertaste of all of those components of the aroma into the finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body. Nice sturdy "winter" body. Moves malty sweet over my tongue. Rich and smooth. Overall, well done as always by Anchor, looking forward to age several of these. However, it’s too malty as an American Strong ale. I think it’s mislabeled. It should be a Winter Warmer.
Earlier Rating: 8/11/2014 Total Score: 3.9
2012 bottle reviewed in December of 2012 (sorry for the late review). This was initially poured into a pint glass but later had in a snifter. The only differences I noticed was the head was a bit messier and spottier along with the smells lasting just a tad longer in the snifter than the pint glass. Here’s the rest. The appearance was a murky brown color (honestly, it kinda reminded me of brown sludge). Anyways, no hit, because I work with sludge from time to time, I guess I’m just too used to it. One finger white foamy head dissipated in both glasses at a nice pace. The smells bitter cocoa bean, sweet licorice with a light ginger, and cinnamon and then allowing a decent allspice to come in. The taste was sweet, slightly bitter and having a decent Christmas spice to round things out a bit. Eventually an earthiness does come out. On the palate, this one sat right at a medium on the body. Sessionable, I was hoping, but showing a decent sipping quality about it. Overall, though the recipe almost always seems to vary every year, I can almost never pass this up year after year.

4.2
tsooj87 (66) - - NOV 27, 2016
Very good. The nose is so rich, so fruity, so complex. Really smells like a much heavier brew, so an excellent weekday brew. Taste is great as well, but there it reveals the relatively low alcohol a bit. Nonetheless, excellent!

4
SvanteL (548) - SWEDEN - NOV 25, 2016
I det närmaste svart med ljusbrunt, tätt, medelstort skum. Maltig doft med inslag av russin, julkryddor (kardemumma, kryddnejlika) och lite dova apelsintoner. Fyllig maltig smak med torkad frukt (russin, dadlar), lite apelsin och kardemumma och kryddnejlikor, fin sötma som balanseras av en lite avslutande beska av riktigt mörk choklad. En suverän julöl, smakrik med trevlig kryddighet och fin balans mellan i sötman.
Earlier Rating: 12/15/2015 Total Score: 3.5
Mycket mörkt rödbrun med medelstort, beiget skum. Doftar mörk limpa, pomerans, russin och kryddor. Rostad smak, lite choklad och mörk kola, russin, lite kryddor. Doftar väldigt gott men smaken är lite tunnare än förväntat, dock en riktigt trevlig julöl.

3.7
charmarita (66) - AUSTRALIA - NOV 24, 2016
Pours black with frothy tan head. Aroma dark chocolate and clove. Taste medium sweet and a little umami. Palate medium body, sticky texture, soft carbonation, long finish. Overall a Christmas Beer likely to appeal to those who like it sweet, those who don’t like it sweet, and those who like everything in between. A safe bet for everyone I reckon.

3.7
gopherfan99 (1828) - Minnesota, USA - NOV 23, 2016
Bottle (labeled Christmas Ale 2016); pours dark brown with a beige head; aroma of spices, molasses, and malt; taste is sweet with spice, caramel, molasses, and malt; finish is dry with some spice

3.3
Fules (1228) - Gyöngyös, HUNGARY - SEP 26, 2016
Hatalmas, tartós, barna hab, sötétbarna szín. Édeskés, fűszeres illat. Pörkölt malátás, karácsonyi fűszeres, de szerencsére nem vitték túlzásba, egész jó lett. Közepesen szénsavas, enyhén kesernyés, egy picit lehetne testesebb. Könnyed karácsonyi sör, nem rossz, de nem is nyűgözött le.

3.6
Mario80 (29) - Galicia, SPAIN - SEP 7, 2016
One of my favorite beer! Pours gold colour beer with a medium head. Well-balanced!


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