RATINGS: 1258   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.64/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 249   ABV: 8.3%
Our winter ale has a gorgeous mahogany hue, a hint of hazelnuts, and a finish reminiscent of mocha and toffee. No spices, just a perfect blend of five specialty malts. Cellarable for 3+ years.

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theacelatrain (262) - Washington DC, USA - NOV 16, 2005
Bottle. Pours a formidable deep, dark red with foamy off-white head and pretty good lacing. Nose of malts and alcohol. Very soft, spiceless flavors of pure, lightly roasted malts. Sweetness with hints of dark fruits and raisin from the alcohol. Incredibly smooth texture, rich and warming body, and very hidden alcohol. An excellent warmer.

NachlamSie (3600) - Denver, Colorado, USA - NOV 16, 2005
UPDATED: NOV 28, 2013 on draught. This is a super deep opaque mahogany with a solid head. The nose is a forest of piny hops, rich caramel, some toasty brown sugar, and smoke. This has, surprisingly, a mocha coffee, porter-like body which is highlighted by some smoked wood and a bright, spicy hop onslaught. The flavor is huge and provides a welcome overtaking of the palate.
[November 28, 2013]
6 pack from Liquor Galaxy. I always wondered why I had such an affinity for this beer so I decided to revisit it. The answer, I’m not sure. I guess my taste has changed over the past few years, but this is just okay and I’m ready to move on after one bottle. I do like that it is a little unique compared to all the other winter specials on the shelves this time of year. The malty nose is very nutty with hints at vanilla, mocha and alcohol. Full malty body with flavors that could possibly lead the drinker to believe spices were used, but nothing quite on the level of an adjunct. Yeah, it’s a pretty good beer and I’ll probably have it again in the future. But I’m not nutso about it. [Bottle, Oct 13, 2007] I’m not exactly sure why, but I do have a soft spot for this stuff. There is a bit less hops than I remember, but many interesting, subtle spiced notes. I’m impressed that no spices are used, because I get definite hints at nutmeg and cardamom. A thin, juicy berry-like flavor is noted along with a pleasant chocolate-esque finish. It’s a nice change from the usual winter warmers, but very appropriate for the season.

temporrari (397) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - NOV 16, 2005
UPDATED: OCT 3, 2006 Bottle. Pours transparent dark amber, beautiful color. Medium off white head. Aroma is rather nice. Toasted caramel malts, resinous hops, slightly nutty. Flavor is almost identical, toasted caramel, mild grassy hops, light smoky notes. Alcohol is practically non existant in the taste. Great brew.

I don’t care what anyone says, age did this stuff no favors.

hotstuff (5281) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - NOV 16, 2005
Bottle. Tan small fizzy head that was mostly lasting, sparse lacing, various bubble sizes, transparent, carbonated, and a ruby hue. Malty, caramel, hoppy, a hint of alcohol, and roasted coffee. Flavor was malty, hoppy, vinuous, caramel, and roasted coffee. Mouthfeel was mostly smooth. Medium body. Nicely done and worthy of a try.

SpudClampDawg (1029) - Jasper, Indiana, USA - NOV 10, 2005
Deep cherry pour. Enticing nutty aroma also notes some earthiness and just a touch of the ABV. The soft carbonation compliments the loads of sweet malts used in the body. The body is full and chewy, weighed down by lots of nutty and woody malt. The yeast adds some fruitiness to the heavy body, giving it a great complexity. Seems young now, would like to tuck some of this away for Christmas next year.

Gachupines (1252) - USA - NOV 6, 2005
Dark brown with a thin head. Aroma is fairly strongly of alcohol. Taste is malty with some hops and alcohol in the finish. Alcohol makes it a little sweet, but fairly well balanced especially compared to some of Avery’s beers. Good strong ale that isn’t overpowering.

OldGrowth (3665) - the Containment Area, North Carolina, USA - NOV 6, 2005
Bottle, from Julio’s. Ok nose, Commercial description really hits it. Clean orangy brown color, good head that faded to a ring and foam cover. Sweet flavors, like aromas with a viney addition, though some might say grapefruit. The 8% shows itself. Medium body, creamy slippery mouthfeel, Dry bittersweet finish. Tasty beer. Nice that it isn’t spiced up.

lamas (1661) - Washington DC, USA - NOV 5, 2005
Bottle. A clear ruby pour with a thin khaki head. Malty aroma with some nuts, dark fruits, vanilla and hints of alcohol. Solidly medium-bodied. Nice balance in the taste. Lots of both malts and hops. A rich malty body that features some nuttiness, caramel and toffee. Finishes with a good bit of citrusy hops and a nice bitterness. The ABV is very well-hidden. A beer like this could really help me get through the family gatherings this holiday season.

framebender (56) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - NOV 5, 2005
Good solid ale but not something I would insist on buying or drinking again. Gentle hop aroma with similiar taste. Balanced malt that is almost unnoticable and just enough hops to taste them but not overpowering or bold. Smooth balanced solid ale.

gatorbeer (148) - Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, USA - NOV 5, 2005
Pours a beautiful mahogany with a small head. Strong flavor of hops and then a strong malty finish with burnt coffee undertones. Lots of flavor but the flavors just don’t quite come together right.

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