overall
89
97
style
RATINGS: 2089   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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3.4
SimonRoller (390) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - NOV 28, 2011
Bottle, pours dark red/brown with off white head. Aroma is spices, gingerbread and some orange. Taste is some spices, cinnamon, malts. Kind of bland I think, but still good.

3.4
GODiSSOUTHERN (390) - Virginia, USA - DEC 27, 2011
2009 vintage at Alamo Drafthouse. Poured dark brown with an inch off white head. Tastes of licorice, anise, and root beer. Medium light carbonation. Interesting and unique flavor.

2.6
Gbgbrouge (388) - SWEDEN - DEC 13, 2014
Poured from bottle, clear dark copper with low head. Aroma strong and complex, notes of caramel, butter, apricot and glühwein. Taste is equally complex malty sweet with little or no bitterness. Odd one...

3.8
Sonicdescent (388) - Donora, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 23, 2009
Poured into Pint Glass, insane amount of thick, creamy head. A lot darker than I expected, looks like the color of black coffee with a slight translucency. First whiff gave me some spice and alcohol scent. Second gave me a huge hit of citrus and hops. Very appetizing though the hoppy scent always throws up an alarm in my neck of the woods..this may be out of my league. Finally as the head settles a little bit, I get a taste. Wow, very smooth and unexpected considering the heavy scent. Very well balanced with a fruity taste at first leaving a lingering citrus aftertaste. The hops from the scent are there, but not nearly as overpowering as I thought it would be. Mouthfeel is surprisingly thick as this has a major coating sensation. Color me impressed.

3.8
naivepegasus (388) - USA - NOV 20, 2008
2008 version. pours a dark brown with about two fingers of tan, slowly dissipating head. Sweet raisin and sweet fruit odor. Lots of spice, I taste, cinnamon, pumpkin and clove. Interesting, I kind of dig it, its good for a nice cold.

3.8
JohnQPublic (387) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - DEC 26, 2008
Pours a clear deep brown, with a thin creamy light tan head on top. Nose is spicy, some brown sugar, with a bit of very light roastiness in there also. Hard to get a handle on. Taste starts off with very clean, light brown sugar and a hint of roasty malt. Dry, light, and clean. Spiciness emerges about 3/4 of the way through - at different points, you get evergreen needles, nutmeg, clove. Maybe a bit of cinnamon. Finish is long, dry, and somehow fluffy and light, with a bit of lingering roastiness that comes out more in the finish than in the actual flavor. Mouthfeel is spot on, light and fluffy. Really a superb beer.

3.9
AdamGott (387) - Idaho Falls, Idaho, USA - DEC 13, 2011
aroma of ginger and slight pine, medium frothy head, dark brown pour almost like thinned out molasses, ginger/molasses taste with a bit of sweet fruitiness - 2011 version

3.8
theOptimator (385) - Sacramento, California, USA - DEC 10, 2011
Aroma is cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, dark fruit. Appearance is dark brown mahogany with medium large tan head. Taste is complex spice. Cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, dark fruits, black licorice, wood, roasty, earthy, some sourness, mint. Palate is medium+. Overall a very interesting beer. Does an excellent job of combining many nice christmas spices, but keeping balanced and not over the top. A complex beer I feel would age well, but is great right now.

3.3
alomtnez (384) - SPAIN - FEB 16, 2015
Brownish frothy medium head, diminishing. Aroma is prune, ripe fruit and toasted malt. Redish dark brown. Clear medium body. Taste is roasted malt, spicy (cinnamon, ginger), citric, prune. Oily texture, medium carbonation. Aftertaste is slightly acid with dry bitterness.


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