ElGaucho (2401) - Minnetonka, Minnesota, USA - DEC 22, 2003
Roasted malt, molasses aroma. Great large, off-white puffy head. Good head retention. Not great lace. Reddish black hue. Despite relatively high alcohol (5.6%), it is hidden well. Cinammon and orange notes described on label are evident. Overly malty, but still good. harlequinn (2744) - Tacoma, Washington, USA - DEC 20, 2003
I actually found this to be quite tasty and satisfying. The best part of the sampler. A nice subtle spiciness, with some ginger and anise with a hint of cinnamon. Extremely subtle and medium bodied, highly drinkable. GEOBRAU (188) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - DEC 17, 2003
Bottle: got my "winter variety 12 pack which contained this beer. I wish I could say this was a rich, complex beer in the tradition of "Old Peculier", but sad to say it is far from it. There is an apparant ginger and almost minty flavor but it isn't supported by the aroma, appearance or palate. I would think S.A. being a company that takes pride in it's reputation would roll out a seasonal ale with some depth, but such is not the case. Appearance and mouthfeel come across as very macro and commercial. It's a shame. wunderbier (1434) - Tampere, FINLAND - DEC 17, 2003
12 oz bottle, snifter, 55 degrees. Tall, tan, creamy sits on a deep ruby body. The head is long lasting. Mild coffee, caramel malt (M); grapefruit hops (L); pear, allspice, cinnamon aromas. Pleasant but light aroma. Heavily sweet flavor becomes a moderately sweet, lightly bitter, lightly acidic finish. Medium body, oily texture, flat carbonation. Flavor lacks most of the spiciness of the aroma. The bottom line is: one of the better SA's, but what does that really mean? StoutOrDeath (121) - USA - DEC 14, 2003
Nice color. Nice smell. Too fruity and weak. Give up Sam.
I'm of the opinion that you have to drink at least a 6 of any beer to truly understand it. No way I could make it through 6 of these. Cleve name, though.
Lizabeth (360) - east falmouth, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 14, 2003
Dark amber. Off-white head. The smell is a pleasant mix of orange and spices ( ginger and cinnamon ) overlaid on a strong caramel malt base. For me, though, the taste of this beer was somewhat disappointing, being much lighter on the spiciness than the smell had led me to believe. When I drink a spicy Winter beer I want to really taste the spices, but try as I might all I could taste in this brew was orange, with maybe an echo of ginger.Not bad, just not what I was expecting. thehoff (598) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - DEC 13, 2003
Amber, thin bubbly cream head. Smells like cinnamon, nutmeg, malts. Odd flavor indeed. It has a sour tanginess to it, and a very dry finish, no aftertaste. Cinnamon in the flavor. Better than the so-called Cranberry Lambic. Nice festive holiday beer. biermonk (265) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - DEC 9, 2003
Nice amber pour- Nose was exceedingly complex hints of spice: ginger and some vanilla as well... Nice, rich malty sweetness that was suprisingly well balanced... Very warming Drew (2411) - Kent, Ohio, USA - DEC 6, 2003
Great aroma - full of spices and even fruit - the label says they used orange - I only picked it up in the aroma, not much in the flavor. Body is thick and malty, they gave this a generous handful from the spicerack - cinnamon and ginger. The finish was surprisingly not too sweet, still I couldn't drink this all night long. Try it with dessert - pumpkin pie maybe. SiddFinch (155) - Pen Argyl, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 3, 2003
They blended quite a bit of spices/flavors together without any one of them being too overpowering. I remember a few years back, the cinnamon and ginger seemed a little over the top. Much better overall balance. Probably my favorite in this years sampler.