Wintertime Ale - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Wintertime AleWintertime Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

111 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 111
Reviews: 67
rAvg: 3.53
pDev: 13.31%
Wants: 5
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  ABV ?

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-11-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 111 | Reviews: 67 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Boilermaker88
3.03/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a stubby 12oz bottle, this brew had a hazy apricot color and a short-lived foamy light tan head. A lightly spicy, musty aroma hovered over the glass, along with a faintly phenolic note. A fruity-sweet taste, of pear and apple, was present initially before a mild coriander note came out with some other spices. The beer finished with a modest hops bitterness and a slight medicinal alcohol bite. The feel was light, thin, and watery.
A rather bland and boring seasonal from North Coast Brewing. I’m somewhat disappointed as I was expected more from the brewery that spawned Old Rasputin.

Photo of freed
3.25/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is the second bottle, the first was usurpted by my brother-in-law. Lovely label on a 12oz bottle. Pours a muted but ruddy straw color with almost no head. Aroma is of british style malt. Rusty and fruity. The yeast breadifies the flavor, and its nice. There's not much hop derived flavors though.

Its an average winter ale, though I expected something more from North Coast.

Photo of nomad
2.78/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a hazy burnt ruby with little head or lace. Smelled of vanilla, belgian candi sugar, and a caramel scent bordering on rum, as wiffs of alcohol were present. Taste was very thin and never comes together: caramel, figs, rummy notes, and a mild butter with a lactic-sour turn. Hops are tartly acidic, blending with a roastiness to create a coffee-noted finish, but not a tasty one. Had an unctious alcohol flavor at the end. A very thin beer that has these flavors but not greatly so.

The sour-ish hops, the day-old coffee finish, and alcohol drive me away, and the very thin mouthfeel doesn't help either.

Photo of rkhaze
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2003 version. I had this beer 3 years ago and it was wonderful. Rich, malty and flavorful. It slipped some last year and since they don't list it on their website, I called the brewery. Was told it was indeed a different recipe 3 years ago but was reformulated last year at a lower alcohol level to enter the North Carolina market. It was described to me as more of a Belgian Brown than a Strong Old Ale. That all being said...
It poured a light amber with a miniscule head that disappeared immediatly. Left ok lace. Aroma of sweet malt, raisins, prunes and a slight smokiness.
Tangy, sweet, smoky, almost peaty malt flavor. Very earthy. Not much of a hop presence and a bit of fruitiness and cocoa in the finish. Medium body, carbonation and a slight tartness make for a very drinkable beer.
I think a "session" winter beer would border on an oxymoron but nonetheless, if there is one this would be it. I was a little disappointed but still love NCB's beers.

Photo of ManekiNeko
3.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

2003 version served lightly chilled in a pint glass.

Appearance: Clear brown colored liquid with a frothy cream colored head. The head dissipates to a small layer of foam after awhile and leaves some impressive lacing for the style.

Smell: Raisin, prune, and maple aromas dominate the nose. Medicinal and piney hop smells are present. A decent sniffer, but I've seen much better.

Taste: A sharp, sweet, and smoky malt flavor that quickly gives way to... um... a nice gap of not much. Then the hops and spices (nutmeg, mostly) realize they're supposed to be on the job (must be a union shop :P ) and do a half-assed job. Faint coffee notes on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium heavy in body with nice aftertastes. Mildly puckering and astringent.

Drinkability: An entry level strong/old ale. I'll let the rest of the 6-er age a bit before I crack 'em open. Still, not a bad beer at all. Would go great with turkey, I'll wager

Photo of gnaussea
3.23/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours amber with orage highlight. Medium head, mine had no lace. The nose is quite strong of peanut caramel malt. Taste is quite different. The malt predominates, but there is a definite bitter character with a hop that sneaks in on the pallete. The flavor is ended abruptly, and a mild bitter aftertaste remainas, Seems like there is just something missing here. Nice bubbly texture. I appreciate the carbonation, but it seems watered down. Overall, not something I will really look forward to in the future.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.78/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a lighter shade of a typical ruby ale with some copper highlights in there and a creamy well-developed head sporting a creamy full head with nice patterns of lacing to boot. Aroma: I believe the Belgian malts and bready spiced yeast aroma are very satisfying, candied sugar thrown in there too. Taste: Is very mild but it ties together subtle flavors very well, with belgian slightly toasted malts and spices for the winter season this is from last winter so I am guessing it's not this tame fresh. Any way you slice it everything that comes from North Coast is solid, this has some subtle hops in the finish very nice beer that I am going to give another go in the colder months. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied fluffy nice texture and very smooth. Drinkability: Is decent have no idea what the alcohol content is but I'm guessing it's substantial as for pure craving this beer after having one it's pretty damn good and I wish I had another one.

Photo of beerguy101
3.95/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2002 version Medium brown color, small head. Aroma is malty, sweet and spicy (nutmeg?). A lighter bodied winter beer. Mild malts are spiced with nutmeg, cinnamon and coriander and ??. Starts out sweet and mellows to a spicy, slightly hoppy bitterness. Flavor is a little light for a winter beer, and its a little thin tasting, but there is something I like about this beer. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly sweet.

Photo of hotstuff
3.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The head was medium sized and ivory with fine-medium bubbles.The body was carbonated and slightly cloudy.The hue was amber and the lacing had a nice appearance on the sides of my glass.The nose was that of hops, clove and spice.The flavor was somewhat bitter and the mouthfeel was tingly, medium bodied and smooth.

Photo of RenoZymurgist
2.2/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured a white frothy head that dissipated very quickly atop an orange-red brew, Aroma was a little dissapointing as there were very few fruity esters to detect, but a hint of coriander was very easy to identify. The taste is not like any strong ale i have ever had before as it is rather weak. Hop bitterness is present up front which segues into a maltiness that is both dry and a little sweet. Definite coriander flavor is a little strange and it kind of reminds me of aventinus doppelbock-weizen. Body is very light and this beer seems to have a low alcohol level for the style. Overall this beer is drinkable as long as it is on the discount rack and you have never tried it before. Once you have tasted this brew you might agree with me, or you might find this a refreshing take on the strong ale style.

Photo of ZAP
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Re-rate 7/15/03

Still think it hasa wheatbock flavor...this is better than I remember though....spicy nose....very inviting....malty flavor with good spiciness....pretty tasty...just not real thick..not bad at all bt many better...bumped up drinkability, mouthfeel and taste .5 and nose 1.0...


I agree with the first two opinions..I expect more out of a old ale...I might be nuts but this tastes like a wheat beer to me. Not a full-fledged dark wheat, but more of an amber wheat...I tried to find some info on this but came up empty. I'd be curious to know if this is a wheat beer. It's not bad, but not my idea of a winter ale. I was very excited to try this, and my grand expectations were not met...still not a bad beer, but I certainly would never buy it in the future.

Photo of tavernjef
3.65/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up on sale for 5 bucks for a six, hell of a summer deal. To bad its not a hell of a good beer. Color is a nice dark glowing amber, one finger high head of creamy tight evennesswhich is dark ivory in hue. Settles slowly leaving a good skim and ring with stringy lace that drips morphing into spots. Smell is of musty fruits, orangish, grassy, earthy in tone, but is quite soft. Taste starts quickly with a sharp feel of very dulled sweet malts and stingey hops, then grabs into a dark orangy twang, somewhat earthy and musty. The flavors meld together well but aren't very strong, its pretty light and uneventful. Feel is a solid medium body, starts strong with a good thickness, thats a little tough to swallow and fades into a creamy smoothness with a very light lingering tang. Could make for a good session beer, but beyond that it may be a passable offering for the style.

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.23/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Found in the "close-out" section of a local wine-n-beer store for $0.99. Why not? (Note: This beer wasn't listed on their website)

Presentation: 12oz amber bottle with quite the "Christmasy" label...snowflakes and all. No info as to sell by/consume by.

Appearance: A lovely hazy amber color with a tight tannish-colored head. Lace at first seems hardy and persistant, but ran out of gas towards the end.

Smell: It certainly smelled like what I thought a barley wine should be. Lots of complex aromas floating around: Dark fruits, caramel, spices. Perhaps a hint of things to come for the palate?

Taste: This beer took a nose-dive for me here. It really didn't do anything for me. Flavor was rather flat and unappealing. As if there wasn't enough "oomph" to make it stand out. It's complex, with a rather dry and almost bittering effect at the end. No alcohol-induced "warming effect" at all.

Mouthfeel: Not nearly as creamy and full-bodied as I'd expected. Thin.

Drinkability: Nothing I would save for a cold winter's night. Pretty light in terms of drinkabilty. Nothing too heavy on the stomach or palate with this one. I'll buy some more Ol' Rasputin from NCBC and enjoy it.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.72/5  rDev +33.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well, it's spring, no time to be reviewing winter beers and yet this one remains to be tried. It has a honey amber color and pours to a light head. The tiny bubbles cannot sustain any of the head whatsoever and it is quickly lost.

The aroma is spicy, cinnamon and cloves or allspice.

I am a big fan of spiced beers and really enjoyed this one. It has a great flavor - moderate malty feel mixed with the aforementioned spices. A touch of a hop bite there, just a brief bit of bitterness mixed, I think, with allspice or clove, I can't nail it down. It's a clean beer, just slightly heavy feeling going down, and would have been great by the fire or the Christmas tree while wrapping presents. Oh well, there's always next year, next time I'll buy a few 6-packs instead of just one bottle.

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.33/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a lovely ruby red colr, with a thick, creamy white head. Bold, outstanding aromatics: fresh, sweet, creamy, with dark, rustic notes, as well, slightly spicy, with cinnamon, fruitiness, touches of cheries, grapes, bright and lively.
On the palate, warm and tasty, and surprisingly smooth. Full malt, and dazzling hop play. Medium body, and it feels light in ABV, but is aflood with flavor. Quite delicious, but lacking some depth that would push it further.
As far as winter ales go, at the top of the middle, or near the bottom of the top!

Photo of Bighuge
4.1/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I believe this sample is a year old. And I believe it is a Belgian Dubbel in style.

Clear copper color. Thin beige head that recedes to a thin film quickly. The collar is thick however. Aroma is very caramelly. A little bit of dry bitterness apparant on the nose as well. The taste is subdued, but somewhat complex. A dry aspect is apparant as well as cedar tones. Fruitiness is present in small quantities. Musty herbalness also come through on the palate. Caramel sweetness blends with a minute cider-like quality. Drinkability is great. Body is about medium.

Last winter I didn't care for this beer. Thought it tasted like a wheat style beer. This year I had a knowledgeable friend tip me off that this beer is best at a year old and that it was a Dubbel in style. He told me of a store where they were discounted and I cashed in.

Photo of kindestcut
2.83/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

My first foray into seasonal brews. Unfortunayely, it wasn't winter when I drank this beer so I don't know if I truly received the intended Wintertme Ale experience.

Wintertime Ale poured a pretty, clear amber color which gave me great hope. The head was slight and died a qrelatively quick death.

A very sweet aroma that I think of when I say "malt." There are vague hints of amaretto and hazelnut.

I was a little disappointed with this beer. It was alright, not bad by any means, but not great. The taste is not strong, quite light without a robust or fulfilling body. There is a mild hoppiness that lingers momentarily as well as a slight taste of alcohol.

To tell you the truth, I had no idea what made this brew a "winter" brew. I can no more imagine drinking this in winter as I can during the summer. A good beer but I can't imagine waiting with baited breath for next winter's edition.

Photo of Morris729
3.63/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark orange amber color with a thick and creamy off-white colored head with nice retention that slowly dissipates into a heavy and bubbly lace. Nose is lightly toasted malt and grains, a bit of caramel, and some notes of cloves and nutmeg. Medium in body with a very smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Taste is sweet toasted malts up front followed by flavors of dark fruits, a bit of spice, and alcohol. There is a bite of citrusy hops in the finish. This is a decent brew but is not as good as several other North Coast beers I’ve had. Still, it does pair well with a cold and rainy evening like tonight.

Photo of BeerManDan
4.65/5  rDev +31.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I really like this beer. It poured an amber color with very little foam and nice lace. The aroma was of roasted malts, big time. The taste was of sweet creamy roasted malts with a hint of spices. This is a smooth, creamy, sweet, pleasant beer that is very good, I think. It has a well balance, complex aroma and taste. If you don't like bitterness and like a smooth, mellow, creamy, off sweet, malty beer. This is the one for you!

Photo of Mark
3.38/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I love North Coast beer and I was excited to try this on a dark winter night watching T.V. with Suzanne. I was a bit let down when I discoverd this was a spiced beer. I was expecting a malty strong ale or even a barley wine style. Appearance was a attractive deep clear amber, a nice head lasted and left intricate lacing. Aroma was of spice which as I mentioned above was a letdown. Taste was spice accented, clove mainly I would think. Solid mouthfeel. Drinkability only so so for me, but spice lovers should take to this beer.

Photo of garymuchow
4.15/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This really grew on me as I drank it and as it warmed.
Malty, slightly sweet aroma with a slight roast quality. Little caramel and some phenol. Nice complexity. Pretty amber color (like an Marzen), clear large full head with good lacing.
Flavor not over powering with a slight hard water quality. Mostly malt, with good balancing with hops. Taste become richer and more satisfying as drink warmed. Pretty good ale smoothness with richness noted.
As this sat it became more flavorful, almost like it needed to breath (like a red wine). Seems like an ale version of a Marzen with similar malt make-up, but with nice ale smoothness.

Photo of chilidog
4.22/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I enjoyed this seasonal and I got more than I was expecting from it. I found it poured a nice clear red-amber with a slight off-white head that maintained ok. The aroma is of a spicey hop. The taste was well balanced I thought of malt, spice, grain & hop. Not overpowering in one area over another. While not to be overlooked is a slight alcohol warmth to the mouth/chest. A very nice Wintertime brew.

Photo of BeerAngel
2.83/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a very clear amber/orange with a nice 2 finger off-white head. The smell reveals tangy burnt malt with hops and light spicing being slightly evident. The taste consists of a light butterscotch/diacetyl flavor with roasted malts and nutmeg blended with mild hops and still yet a tangy aftertaste. Although maybe meant to be complex, it is not due to poor balance. This beer is a rather strange brew. It is light bodied and finishes watery. This is a rather disappointing brew from North Coast Brewing. Once again, I appreciate Pegasus providing me with a variety of brews to sample. Cheers!

Photo of sponberg
3.25/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Deep auburn with little head and a nose like a glass of Scotch.

Rather thin, a tea-like flavor with hints of cloves in the background. A buttery, yeasty flavor is present in the middle, but in the end the tea-like character wins out. OK, but there are more characterful winter ales out there that I would drink first.

Photo of Pegasus
3.63/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Flawlessly clear dark copper color with a large off-white cloud top head and lots of sticky broken lace and good retention. Cloves are quite prominent in the aroma, as well as nutmeg, dark fruits, and toasted malt. Taste begins with strong toasted malt flavor, alcohol, and some spiciness, although less than the aroma would suggest. Late in the taste spicy, mildly bitter but quite lingering hops make their presence known. The finish is dry; mouthfeel seems a bit watery for this style.

Wintertime Ale from North Coast Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 111 ratings.