RATINGS: 1155   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.46/5   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 6   EST. CALORIES: 207   ABV: 6.9%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Each year, when people are starting to unpack their winter clothes and replenish their firewood, our tiny brewery in the coastal redwoods of Northern California makes seasonal preparations of a different kind. As the cold arrives, we release a unique beverage created to add warmth to even the coldest and darkest of winters days. Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale begins with a very high original gravity to create a hearty and spicy brew with a deep amber hue and a smooth finish. Anderson Valley Brewing Company wishes you the very best for the holiday season and the New Year.

MALTS:
Pale Two-Row, Crystal (40L and 80L), Munich (20L)

HOPS:
Northern Brewer, Liberty

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3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chalumeaux (1501) - Middleton, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 31, 2016
UPDATED: DEC 31, 2016 Poured from bottle reddish brown with a nice off white head. Aromas of caramel malt toffee vanilla and some spices. Taste is caramel malt bread toffee.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
AirForceHops (7063) - Epping, New Hampshire, USA - DEC 31, 2016
12 oz. bottle, T.J. with the share. The brown color, lasting full head. Aroma is caramel, toffee, yeast, cinnamon.

Flavor shows a light malty sweetness, caramel, molasses, brown sugar, cinnamon, and roasted grain. Almost a chocolate note. Body is medium with a malty finish. It is better than I was guessing. Easy to drink, no issues.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Cimbasso (886) - - DEC 30, 2016
Sampled on draught at The Side Door in Chicago. A clear amber/copper colour. Fruity aroma of malt. Lots of toffee, vanilla and fruity spices in the taste. Some bubblegum notes. A well-rounded and well-balanced beer. Highly drinkable.

4.5
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
ordybill (1707) - Douglasville, Georgia, USA - DEC 26, 2016
Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is a clear amber color with a medium sized white head. The aroma is grainy with some malt and spice. The taste is pretty sweet with malt and has a creamy texture with a hint of spices.

4.6
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
Gangstergafje (1045) - Capelle aan den IJssel, NETHERLANDS - DEC 15, 2016
The beer has a nice look. The color of the beer is a nice reddish brown. The beer has a slight cloudiness. On top of the beer a nice layer of rather rough offwhite foam is formed. The bulk of the foam collapses quickly, leaving a tiny drape. I like the looks. The warming red color already gives you a winter, christmassy feeling. This feeling comes back in the smell (and in the taste of course). The smell is warming and rich. It reminds me a bit of pumpkin-spiced beers, a type of beer I really love. There are warming aromas of cinnamon, some anise, cardamom maybe a delicate hint of clove, nutmeg and ginger (some of them real subtle). All real winter spices. The smell also has a gum-like sweetness. There are some spicy and citrusy hop aromas, but the aromas of the spices fill the most of the smell, which is good. The taste is great to. It contains the same delicious spicy flavours. There are some nice malty sweets and hoppy bitters. Everything is in great balance. The taste is a bit milder that the smell though. The palate is good. The finish is a bit dry. The body of the beer is medium. Carbonation is average, but it suits the beer. All in all, a perfect beer, especially for the winter months.

4.6
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
orbit (34) - Utrecht, NETHERLANDS - DEC 13, 2016
Beautiful seasonal ale! Much better than most bockbeers and also better than a lot of pumpkins. It is a tempting but fruitful taste, which comprises of winter herbs. Too many to mention, but there is some spicy syrup taste than heads up.

3.6
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
BeerBaby (91) - , Florida, USA - DEC 3, 2016
Opened a cold bottle into a chilled glass. Purchased at Total Wine in Altamonte Springs, Fl. Nice red/amber color. Citrus and clove, a bit more bitter from the hops than my liking on the front end, but Im a stout girl. Little bit of clove in the aroma. Nice creamy very light tan head. More traditional holiday spices on the back end like Alspice, clove, etc. Not bad. I drank the whole 6 pack. Not a heavy beer, so you can drink a few of these.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
DwarfeD (3390) - Amersfoort, NETHERLANDS - DEC 2, 2016
355ml bottle at home. Somewhat pale amber brown with a small slightyly off-white head. Medium body with low to moderate carbonation. Herbal sweet and bitter tones. Clove, other herbs & spices, brown sugar, ripe dark fruits, caramel and malts. OK brew.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
bramvb (7) - NETHERLANDS - OCT 18, 2016 does not count
Beautiful red/amber, caramel, thin body ,with a cream finish, peppery spicy aftertaste

2.5
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
mejiajav (8) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - OCT 4, 2016 does not count
Ive never been the biggest fan of Anderson Valley. I am unsure if they use some sort of proprietary malt but most of their offerings taste annoyingly similar. Most of the ones Ive had, with the exception of the gose, have an overly malty, caramely and sweet feel to them, regardless of the style. Unfortunately, Winter Solstice is not the exception. It pours a hazy, burnt orange with about a finger of head which dissipates fairly quickly. The thin lacing left behind also disappears quickly leaving nearly nothing but a small ring around the edge of the glass. I am pretty sure Im supposed to get spices on the nose, but I only get vanilla. And lots of it! There is also some sweet caramely maltness and toffee notes. But mostly vanilla. This beer is very sweet. Its all vanilla in the middle front and back. Towards the end I was able to detect some serious brown sugary sweetness to boot, but thats about it. Reminds me of sweet bread and caramel. The mouthfeel is decent with enough carbonation to make it feel like beer and not a sticky cocktail. Sadly, as most Anderson Valley beers, this seems muddled and without any real depth. There are so many better examples of this style out there that this seems a bit pointless. https://agrainoftruthblog.wordpress.com


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