Innis & Gunn Winter Beer 2011 - Innis & Gunn
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Ratings: 74 | Reviews: 35 | Display Reviews Only:
3.68/5 rDev -0.8%
Winter Beer 2011 has a wonderfully sleek chestnut colour with sharp highlighting of various shades. The beer is clear as the bottle it came in. While it is reasonably flat it nonetheless looks quite handsome in the brewery's branded tulip glass.
If you've smelled one Innis and Gunn beer you've pretty much smelled them all. For a brewer that is always experimenting with different recipes and different barrels in which to age their beer, it's remarkable how much house character is retained one offering to the next. I'm not complaining though - I like this buttery oak scent.
'Buttery' is a bad word to most beer drinkers. Innis and Gunn, however, have a way of making buttery good in the same way other brewers have a way of making sourness a favorable element. This is smooth and clean on the palate, with tons of pure vanilla and oak flavour. It drinks like a whiskey but without the alcoholic harshness.
Winter Beer is an excellent offering for a mild Scottish winter, but not so much a freezing Canadian one. The chewy, nutty sweetness of amber and Cara malts is appreciated, and blends very well into the subtle orange zest and pumpkin-pie spiciness, but you need a hell of a lot more of it when dealing with endless nights and sub-par temperatures.
This brewery has disappointed me in the past by marking up new - but virtually indistinguishable beers - and releasing them with fancy packaging where what's written on the bottle is more impressive than what's actually contained within it. But I was willing to let bygones be bygones. And, so far as Winter Beer 2011 is concerned, I'm glad I did.
12-31-2011 17:26:46 | More by biegaman
4.15/5 rDev +11.9%
From the 2011 gift pack. Poured into the Innis & Gunn glass. A nice mahogany-reddish colour with a nice thick off-white head, good retention.
Smells of whiskey, rum, vanilla, oak, caramel, lots various spices, dark fruits, very enticing.
Tastes of oak and whiskey upfront, vanilla, dark fruits and caramel finish it off with nice biterness, very sweet and malty. The oak is very apparent.
The mouthfeel is wonderful, chewy and thick, creamy, a very good beer, one of their best.
12-27-2011 01:44:38 | More by GodOfBeer
3.7/5 rDev -0.3%
poured into innis and gunn glassware from a cold clear bottle. red/brown color with receding one inch head. smells oaky for sure, and less potent than the rum cask they make. mild citrus flavor from what must be orange peel, and a robust woody barrel finish. complex yet approachable this is the best beer ive had from innis and gunn. mouthfeel is a little watery, which you can tell by looking at the texture, but the bubbles keep it drinkable and they aftertaste asks for more. not sure how seasonal this one really is, but it works for me
12-22-2011 04:44:25 | More by StonedTrippin
4.08/5 rDev +10%
Purchases in a gift pack. First to be tasted. Poured from bottle into Innis and Gunn glass
Appearance - A nice deep/dark red color. A billowing head lasting for ~ 1 min prior to fading to a white laces coating on top of the beer.
Smell - A Nice aroma of fruits and rum meets the noise at first. Quite strong, but give away to a bit of vanilla later on.
Taste - A rum flavor initially gives away to a more citrusy flavor. This then fades again to a more alcohol/rum aftertaste.
Mouthfeel - A fair amount of carbonation and a relatively expected body for the strength.
Overall- A good brew although it looks and smells a bit better then it drinks. I am looking forward to trying others by them.
12-19-2011 02:38:13 | More by Darkmagus82
3.18/5 rDev -14.3%
Beer/Brewery - Winter Beer 2011/Innis & Gunn
City/State- Edinburgh, United Kingdom (Scotland)
STYLE – Scottish Ale
ABV – 7.4%
IBU – UNKNOWN
DATE – 12 DEC
SERVING TYPE – 12 OZ bottle
GLASSWARE – Pub Glass
APPEARANCE – A red with an orange hue very little head, what head there is an off white color
AROMA- Whiskey with hoppiness in the tail end
TASTE – Alcohol is the thirst taste, like a horse at the track. There is a vanilla taste that mellows out the alcohol.
MOUTHFEEL – Crisp and very carbonated also a bit syrupy as well.
CONCLUSION – I am not a big fan of this beer. I was so hyped for it and no sparks for me. Being that you can only get this beer in the gift box with the glass I was expecting a lot more.
12-13-2011 22:25:07 | More by Heischman
3.5/5 rDev -5.7%
A-pours a very attractive honey hued amber, with creamy light tan head that dissolves quickly and leaves a very silky bit of lacing.
S-immediate sugar sweetness followed by rumcake and dried fruit character.
T-smooth dark cherry rum and caramel malt. smokey vanilla and peppery rum mix in the finish.
M-very smooth, nice balance and decent carbonation. Afterwarmth lingers on the tongue
O-not bad. still not completely sold on the style but this is decent and i could see myself trying another someday.
11-30-2011 23:04:54 | More by sirdrinkwell
3.88/5 rDev +4.6%
Tasted On: 11-26-2011
Freshness: Best by 12-2012
Packaging: 330 ml clear bottle
Glassware: Innis & Gunn cervoise glass
Purchased: Gift box from Frugal MacDoogal, Nashville
Picked this up in a gift box with the attractive cervoise glass and 3 Innis & Gunn offerings.
Clear chestnut brown color, with few bubbles seen in the glass. Head is tan, with small tight bubbles, of about 3 fingers in height. Very good lacing and a good amount of head retention.
Aromas are mainly of oak woodiness, caramel malts and spices. Also some hints of alcohol.
Taste is rich and somewhat sweet, with biscuity malts. There is also vanilla and a light bitterness of orange citrus. The oak presence is strong and seems to overwhelm the other flavors.
Mouthfeel is full bodied and smooth. The finish is dry but not bitter.
Overall a very good beer, but not as enjoyable as their original Scottish ale version.
11-27-2011 05:00:52 | More by sommersb
3.9/5 rDev +5.1%
Purchased as part of the gift pack along with the two other bottles and glass, and now that the nights are cold, this fit in well with the season! This wasn't as dark or heavy as other winter beers that I've had but this had to be one of the smoothest winters I've ever tasted and like the other Innis and Gunn beers that I tried, the carbonation was so low that I wondered if this was beer or not. It's good to have something that stands out from the crowd!
This had a nice mahogany-oak hue to it with not a lot of head or lacing to be seen. The aroma wasn't strong but there was some oak, vanilla, and booze in the smell and all of these were present in the taste as well. Just a hint of peat and charcoal too but nothing so strong as to be offensive. For a beer this strong, this went down well and had a bit of a bourbon feel in the aftertaste, since it was more sticky and not spicy like some rums that I've had. This was thick like rum but had a bit more of a warming effect than I anticipated.
I pictured this as Winter Ale until I saw what category this fell under. Many would probably not pick this style for a cold and windy night but for the time of the year, this is a great choice. Like the other offerings from Innis and Gunn, it's nice to see something like this push the boundaries of what is considered beer and it's a bonus that this is so enjoyable sip by mellow sip.
11-23-2011 18:07:57 | More by JerzDevl2000
3.5/5 rDev -5.7%
Mahogany/reddish colour, ring of white head, some lace left. Smell is full of vanilla and malt, caramel like sweet notes, lots of oak, light skunky pointd but not as much as some of their other stuff, cherry and light alcohol. Taste is fairly malty with vanilla and sherry notes, light spice, citrus and fruity points, light alcohol with a woddy almost whisky like aftertaste. Med-high active carbonation, full body and lightly syrupy. A decent brew thats a bit of a sipper, it was a little too oaky but there was enough other flavours there to not be an issue.
11-12-2011 13:19:24 | More by peensteen
4.03/5 rDev +8.6%
A- Pours a rich coppery color that is transparent for the most part...possibly a bit of chill haze. The head starts out a beige color, isn't really thick and is rather fizzy, disappearing rather quickly in my I&G glass. Carbonation appears to be finely tuned and mild, and the lacing leaves much to be desired. Overall, this isn't the best looking beer that this brewery has produced...it just doesn't stand out, but I think this will be the only weak point of the review.
S- The aromas are really pleasant, with warming tones of sweet sugary malt, fresh vanilla bean, caramel/toffee and light fruitcake. The oaked character is much mellower than in other offerings, but it's there and reminds me more of a dark rum cask than Scotch. Hop profile is noticed, but again, very mellow.
T- Much different than the aromas let on! The oak is much more noticeable and reminds me of single malt instead of the sweeter rum smells I felt it had....it hits the palate aggressively at first and quickly smooths out. The sweeter characters of caramel malts and vanilla shine nicely, along with dark fruits and a buttery tinge. I don't really notice any boozy aspects, which is always a plus in my books. The finish, I don't find has much of a hop presence, but rather a woody dryness. Nice mellow flavors on the palate!
M- This is a distinctly smooth, warming beer with great cozy flavors. The body is medium-ish and very creamy, as the carbonation is very fine and isn't overdone. I really like the deepness that this one has without it being in my face....just very well blended.
O- Overall I find this to be a little weaker in terms of I&G's full lineup that I've tried to date, but it's still a quality brew that I have no qualms with for drinkability. I'd happily enjoy a couple of these on a cold night, under a blanket watching a movie! I recommend this one for anybody to try!
11-12-2011 01:26:33 | More by ChrisCage
4.33/5 rDev +16.7%
L: Pours a nice caramel orange color with a medium sized and medium bodied off-white colored head that laces the glass nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet roasted and caramelized malts, a bit of oak, some vanilla, and a hint of brown sugar.
T: Tastes of sweet roasted malts, nice mix of caramelized malts, some oak and vanilla flavors, hints of citrus and brown sugar finish it off.
M: Rich, smooth, perfect amount of carbonation, medium bodied, warming.
D: Overall a really nice mix of flavors and feel making it very enjoyable.
11-10-2011 11:04:13 | More by erosier
3.08/5 rDev -17%
Purchased as a part of the gift pack so as to avoid light-struck bottles.
Appearance -- Pours a dark garnet hue with chestnut highlights and a tuft of fizzy beige head. No head retention or lacing.
Smell -- Well-caramelized malt, booze-soaked dark fruitiness, oak, vanilla, orange zest. Nice, but not enough big malty character for me.
Taste -- Malty with dark bread and dark fruit. Mild spicy phenolic character is also there. The oak cask lend some woody vanillin, but more dry oak flavor.
Mouthfeel -- Medium-bodied with lots of fizzy carbonation. Dry, tannic woody feel. Off-puttingly tannic.
Overall -- Somehow I'm not thrilled. Half the beer that Rum cask ale (presumably the same base beer) is. Admittedly, not my favorite style, but it lacks the big, robust, over-the-top malty richness that greats of the style portray.
11-10-2011 04:01:47 | More by yeahnatenelson
4.1/5 rDev +10.5%
Served from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.
Appears a rich cream soda brown with a small rimlet of bubbles.
Smells of sweet citrus, rich toffee, and sweet thick malt.
Tastes like oak with some orange flavor that comes through.
Mouthfeel is nice but nothing remarkable. It has a rather clean finish but isn't as broad an experience as I would like.
Overall a decent beer but not as good as the classic oak barrel or my favorite from them - their rum barrel.
11-03-2011 02:16:31 | More by Yagman3000
Innis & Gunn Winter Beer 2011 from Innis & Gunn
84 out of 100 based on 74 ratings.