I’ve always loved Smuttynose Brewing, as they make awesome beer – but this was the first time I’ve tried their Winter Ale.
It’s an Abby Double, so it’s brewed with Belgian yeast – but it only rates a 5.1% ABV… which means, you can drink more than just one. 😉
I thought it was pretty tasty, but my personal favorite is still the Smuttynose Brown Ale.
I wasn’t a fan of New Belgium’s “Fat Tire”… yes, I know I’ll get yelled at for that – but it just tasted a little “funky” to me. Honestly, I think most people in VA only loved it because we couldn’t get it here. This Snow Day, however, is a yummy treat!
I don’t give up on a brewery, just because I don’t like one or two of their brews – so I picked up New Belgium Brewery’s Winter Ale. I was expecting this beer to taste like most Winter Seasonal Ales, lots of spice and hints of coffee and chocolate. Snow Day, is certainly warm and inviting, but it’s not as sweet and spicy as I thought it would be. This rich brew tastes of bitter chocolate and a little more hop taste than most Winter beers. All in all, I really like it! It’s nice and bold and a little chocolaty!
Sam’s Oktoberfest is sadly gone, and replaced on taps all over with Sam’s Winter. Oh how I miss you, Oktoberfest!
I don’t mind Samuel Adam’s Winter Lager, but I don’t really see it as anything special. Now all of you Sam fans… don’t “boo” me – I normally sing the praises of this brewery, but this seasonal just doesn’t scream “drink me”, in my opinion. Is it bad?? – Not at all! It does have its good points, like a maltiness that warms you… but I guess when I think of Winter beers, I think of something like the Snow Goose seasonal; a beer brimming with spice and heartiness!
Maybe I was just aiming too high, especially when I’ve been so impressed with the other Sam Adams brews – like their Holiday Porter and Old Fizziwig – that I’ve mentioned in previous posts.
Don’t worry, I’ll still drink it – I don’t pour out a decent beer! Cheers!
I posted about Blue Moon Brewery’s White Ale not too long ago – and it was no secret that I didn’t like it. In the very bottom of our beer refridgerator, was a lonely Blue Moon bottle. Initially, I thought it was a nasty White Ale, left over from some get together, but the bottle said “Full Moon”. Intrigued, I popped the cap and tried it. This was a Winter Ale, one of my favorite styles, so it was rich with warm spices and savory malts. There was a little bit of oxidation, but that was probably because it’s Summer, and obviously that beer had been in there forever! I shouldn’t have been so quick to write off the Blue Moon Brewery, as this beer was pretty good; I stand by my statement that the White Ale sucks though.
When Winter arrives, I will give their new Winter a chance – at least one.
While I’m mostly a malt girl, I do enjoy a pale ale here and there – but this IPA leaves a bad taste in my mouth. The hop taste is just overwhelming and way to bitter for my liking. They use Willimette and Cascade Hops in this IPA, and I can only assume that I don’t like the Willimette Hop flavor, as I love Cascade (one of my favorite pales, Sierra Nevada, uses Cascade Hops).
On a nicer note, I have loved Redhook Brewery for years. If, like me, you end up not liking this Long Hammer, here are some of my favorites from the brewery that are sure to tickle your tastebuds: ESB, Winterhook and Late Harvest Ale. Some of my friends think this is a tried and true IPA and they actually choose it when picking up a six-pack, so please don’t rule it out if you like the those extra hops.
Brew a beer with spices like cinnamon and nutmeg, and it’s sure to be a hit with me! Winter beers should give you the “warm fuzzies” and that’s exactly how I feel about Harpoon’s Winter Warmer. A malty, delicious, spicy brew – it’s perfect for a cold day. And while it does make you think of Mom’s Apple Pie, it isn’t overly spiced to the point of annoyance, like some other holiday Winter beers.
Harpoon is an all around great brewery serving up other yummy beers such as their Chocolate Stout and IPA! My only real complaint as that you can only purchase the Winter Warmer and Chocolate Stout in their Winter Mixed 12-pack… which is only available in, you guessed it, Winter! So, if anyone still has any of these delicious bottles laying around – invite me over!!