overall
89
97
style
RATINGS: 2109   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 (192) - 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!

3.7
ivan9856 (191) - Arlington, Virginia, USA - JAN 2, 2006
I sampled a 12 oz. bottle. The body is mahogany with a large, rocky tan head. There is excellent lacing. Rich malt, yeast, and spices like nutmeg and gingerbread, are featured in the nose. The backbone of dark roasted malt quickly yields to a complex midpalate with a variety of flavors such as coffee, dark chocolate and licorice. The aforementioned spice spectrum, roasted nuts and anticipated pine needle essence are also revealed The finish is moderately hopped, and fairly long lasting. A very good seasonal ale.

3.6
efrumtheidiot (190) - Colorado, USA - FEB 15, 2008
2007 bottle. pours a dark ruby-copper with a tan head. aroma is clove, spice, dark fruits, sweetness, and yeah, i actually do sense the furniture polish hughie wrote of (haha, a strangely satisfying aroma)! taste is clovey, liquorice, dirt, spices, light cinnamony raisins. tastes very christmas-like, similar to bread pudding. mid-light bodied with a bubbly, prickly mouthfeel. not a bad brew at all, has that classic anchor taste with a holiday twist. not a flavor explosion, but a gently satisfying holiday session brew. will definately buy again next year.

4.1
gizmo_ber (190) - Steinwenden, GERMANY - DEC 21, 2013
2013 edition. Great spice blend, but goes down very smooth and creamy. A delicious ale.

3.8
swillguzzler99 (188) - Peoria, Arizona, USA - NOV 27, 2014
From a magnum bottle. Near opaque brown with fizzy head. Chocolate biscuit nose. Sweet juniper taste. Smooth finish. Another great day at the in-laws.

3.2
Chickencoop (188) - California, USA - AUG 6, 2010
For what this is, it is a solid winter beer that has become a tradition, .....but this just came off to spiced and having a odd metalic twang throughout. I love Anchor, remember this in the day in college when you’d be all like, winter beers rock, then pound one and puke, good times.

3.1
theviolet (186) - New York, New York, USA - DEC 10, 2008
2008 Bottle Into Tumbler. Aroma seems very spicy in a holiday type way with a bit of caramel. Not something I particularly enjoy. Looks nice, small tan head, rich brown body, good lacing. My initial thought when tasting it was wow, bitter. As i swallowed, the bitterness was replaced by holiday spices, and a slight bit of sweetness. Aftertaste was again bitter in an almost toasty, slightly burnt way. Has a bit of creaminess, but not overly prevalent.

3.3
37steel (186) - St. Charles, Illinois, USA - DEC 3, 2007
2007 edition. 12 oz bottle. Dark brown with a thick tan head. Aroma is caramel malt with some spices. Flavor has cinnamon, nutmeg (?) and maple. A little thin on the finish.

3.8
chilehead (186) - Laguna Niguel, California, USA - DEC 9, 2005
I had this on draft at Pizza Port San Clemente. A very different and seasonal tasting brew. Nose strongly of cider spices and bubble gum, mouth of bubble gum, fruit, and cinnamon. I wouldn’t want this all year round, but it’s just right for Christmas :-) Pour was dark brown.

4.2
marv3mania (185) - Lansing, Michigan, USA - NOV 15, 2013
2013 vintage. 12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass. Appearance is ruby-tinted dark brown with a thin tan head. Aroma is caramel, toffee, pine, and some light holiday spices. The aroma gets richer and maltier as the beer warms. Taste pretty well follows the nose, with a fruity taste at the front and the holiday spices at the ends. Very nice, with lots of different tastes and smells. I like it.


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