1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Samuel Smith's Winter Welcome Ale - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

Not Rated.
Samuel Smith's Winter Welcome AleSamuel Smith's Winter Welcome Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,009 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,009
Reviews: 1,113
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 12.26%
Wants: 33
Gots: 135 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-29-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (28) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 2,009 | Reviews: 1,113
Photo of MuenchenerKindl
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a big pint ++ bottle to a pint glass. The liquid is a clear copper color with good carbonation. The head is 1 fat finger, off white and leaver some lace.

The smell is nice Very bready with hints on spice.

The Taste follows well. A nice bitter bready taste, Very small spice notes. I like it this way better, too many ave over spiced.

The mouthfeel is fine, Very good, Nice feel, good carbonation, the body is fine too.

The drinkability is very good, Great, No prob knocking several of these back. but all in all not a beer I will get lots of, too many others to dring that have the whole package. Prosit MK

Photo of JayTheFinn
4.45/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Very tasty! I gave it high marks for sheer drinkability. This one goes down smooth!

A - Clear light copper body with a strong, long lasting head.
S - Smells sweet and spicey, like the scent of a carrot cake that the neighbor just made.
T - Nice mild malty mix. Subtle alcohol taste. Just enough spice, while not overwhelming the tongue.
M - Lingers on the tongue for a good long while.
D - I could drink these all day!

Photo of MiScusi
4.18/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16.9oz bottle, poured a nice clear dull brown, maybe a little orange in there, with a bubbly/fluffy white head that dissipates after a minute. The smoothness and subtle spiciness really make this a nice and mild beer to drink. Little toastly malt as well as caramel presence there too. Carbonation gives a somewhat prickly mouthfeel at first but overall a smoothness takes over.

Photo of beerphan
3.81/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz clear bottle -> goblet
2006 edition
code: SG27B1

Pours a clear copper with a big white head that fades to a thin layer of suds and leaves thick rings of lace. Carbonation is average.

Nose: Not much here, some light spice and malt.

Taste: Mimics the nose. Sublte spice flavors with some a nice maltiness. Not a very intense beer with an average taste that really could not offend.

The mouth is average, and not as thick as some winter ales.

The is a light version of the winter ale, making it a very drinkable brew. I find alot of winter welcomes to be too overwhelming for long sessions, but this one i think deserves one session a year.

Photo of Franchise
3.77/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This offering from Samuel Smith's pours a maroon burnt sienna leaving a thick frothy off-white head and a crystal clear body. The aroma is caramel, plum, yeast, fruity, faint hop essence. The taste starts nutty and fruity with slight funky esters with a tart acidic bitterness rounded out by more bready, fruity, plum, fig sweetness. This is a good beer mild but satisfying.

Photo of BlackAngus
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep copper color, thin white head.

S - Sourness, maltiness, with a touch of hops.

T - Sour, tangy, malty, but with a nice hop flavor.

M - Medium body, clean, nicely carbed.

D - I would definitely get this again. I really wish we could get this in brown bottles, because I'm always hesitant to buy imports in clear glass. But I'll be looking for this again.

Photo of shamus
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2006-2007 Edition

A Christmas special. I like the holidays so I like the idea of a holiday brew. This has a colourful label that depicts and old fashioned Christmas scene of a Victorian looking couple ice-skating.

The beer itself is a deep copper with plenty of head that laces very nicely. it has a nice smell of mildly spicy malt and hops. It's a bit sweeter than what I generally like but the bitterness of the hops offset this to create a very enjoyable brew.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas.

Photo of theopholis
3.56/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured from the 550 ml brown bottle into a tulip glass. A semi-loose, white head , little staying power tho, with some very interesting lacing.

Aroma: Mostly a mash sourness in the beginning. As it warms, you get light floral hop aroma in the backgorund, with a crisp, sweet maltiness in the foreground.

Taste: An odd sourness in the beginning, with a nice slightly acidic, hoppy flavor on the tip of your toungue.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation, very prominant on the tongue and in the jowels. Medium body with a crisp bitter finish.

Drinkability: Quite drinkable. Not overly heavy like a lot of winter ales.

Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.49/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1 part liquid, 1 part head. Amber, clear, almost no carbonation.

Light caramely and bready malt and yeast esters. Smells like Pilsner yeast.

Light. Sweet nectar. Mild metallic vibes. Mild bitterness.

Nice oral fomation and carbonation sting. Refreshing.

Delicate and complex flavors to be admired. This makes it a very light ale. I’ve read that this was one of the original winter warmers and modern variations are much stronger and bolder. I respect Winter Welcome for this, although I don’t think it stands up to modern Winter Warmer standards. It does not have big malt presence, among other lacking qualities. It would make a weak Old Ale or a good solid English Pale Ale.

Photo of Magpie14
3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appernace: classic golden, red color almost like a tint of crimson and cinnamon. The foamy soapy head formed quickly and left quickly. It did leave some big chunks at the rim of the glass but that was about it.

Smell: smells a bit watery or thin with hint of honey....but I could detect slight spices and grassy hops.

Taste/Mouthfeel: spices, hops, and toatsy malts. Some interesting toffee or honey/caramel flavor pairs nicely with the spiced flavor (nutmeg and small touch of cinnamon) and is a good example of a winter warmer. Body is slightly creamy and smooth. Nice beer to sip! aftertaste is kind of dry and gets to you after a while.

not to shabby! I would buy this again as long as I can find it around here.

Photo of cornet1
3.74/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

When I saw this at one of my local stores, I just had to pick it up. I have had several other Samuel Smith's and they have all been fantastic so I wanted to try this one out too. It wasn't until I got home and poured a bottle into my mug that I noticed that the four bottles in the pack were from the 2005-2006 series (I bought this on Dec. 6 2006). I guess the 6% alcohol has kept this four pack alright because it wasn't flat or sour/sunky. It poured a wonderful amber color with a nice think foamy head. The tase was malty with just a hint of something extra....ginger perhaps? I really wish I had this brew before so that I could compare it to see if the age has affected it at all. Well, I recommend the 2005-2006...that is if anyone out there still has any around! I would love to hear some comments letting me know if this beer can be aged for a year with out it going bad!!!!

Photo of BigRedN
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured from the 550 ml BROWN bottle into a pint glass. A very nice 1-inch head forms a top the clear amber colored beer. The head has some staying power before fading to a nice cover. Leaves some decent lacing.

Smell: Initial scent is hoppy aromas, mostly floral. As the beer warms up I get more malt. The malt aromas are lightly roasted caramel malts, I anticipate some sweet malt in the taste from the scent.

Taste: A touch sweet malt at the outset, as expected. A nice firm spicy, hoppy finish. A nice well balanced beer.

Mouthfeel: Decent carbonation, a touch prickly on the tongue. Medium in body with a nice crisp bitter finish.

Drinkability: A very drinkable and enjoyable beer, even at 6% alcohol. There are just so many winter brews to try, I don't know if I'll get around to picking another up. This will make my list of gets for next winter.

Photo of brentk56
4.32/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006-2007 Version (Brown Bottle!!!!)

Appearance: Pours a clear medium amber color with a bubbly head that hangs around but fails in the lacing department

Smell: Butterscotch aroma with vague hints of holiday spice

Taste: Starts with a biscuity flavor that is joined by holiday spice and bitter character mid-palate; after the swallow the ale gets fruitier and also provides a subtle but sharp earthy bitter flash

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Nice and flavorful that punches the right buttons in a Winter Warmer

Thanks, beerhandy

Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - this winter ale pours a light brown chestnut color with alight tan head and some dawdling few bubbles of carbonation

S - big on the vanilla/malty aromas up front, sweet and roasted and wintry, a great balance, with that intrepid amalgamation of holiday spices lingereing in the undercurrent

T - malty up front as expected, with an uprising hoppiness whose boldness surprised me, a nice balance, with a hint of those aforementioned holiday spices, but just enough, not to much much as to overspice, but enough to make you want another sip to figure it out, but you never will, my guess would be ginger/nutmeg, like a gingerbread man

M&D - smooth, enough so the girlfriend didnt hate it, but a nice winter beer that would keep an Athabaskan warm. enjoyable and shareable, a great holiday beer, if not one of the best

Photo of schusterbauer
4.55/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appears a very clear orange/brown color in the glass, with a 1-finger off-white head that leaves hints of lacing. smells of buttered rum, caramel, and a slight hint of bread/yeast. tastes like buttered rum/butterscotch; lots of biscuit flavor; a very nice peppery finish with hints of nutmeg, and a good amount of hops bitterness. these flavors, playing off of one another, put me more in the mind of winter and the holidays than the candied sweetness of other winter warmers. mouthfeel is quite buttery and oily, which actually seems just right to match the flavors. drinkability is high. this is a very understated and classy beer that truly does make a nice winter warmer. the spices seem right for a cold night by a fire, and the abv is just enough to give you a kick of warmth without overdoing it.

Photo of brdc
3.35/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber with a white foamy head that disappears way too quickly, leaving little lacing behind.
Smell is rather weak, with some hints of hops and malts, but all very faint.
Taste is somewhat bland as well; some maltiness with a drier, hop finish, but I really did not find a lot of complexity there.
Mouthfeel is somewhat oily, easy but not enticing to drink.
Not a bad beer, but really not special. Samuel Smith has a lot of better offerings out there, the Porter being my favorite.

Photo of DaveFL1976
3.46/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The body on this beer really is pretty. A copper/reddish/amber color, crystal clear and sparkling. The head is a bit of a let-down, unfortunately. Starts foamy and then dissapates into nearly nothing.

Smell is rather weak on this brew, and just not very interesting. A little bit of maltyness, and a tiny bit of hops, but just rather bland.

Taste is sweet up front with plenty of malt. A bit spicy or herbal, then buttery on the end.

Mouthfeel is rather thick and coats the mouth well. Drinkability is so so. I probably won't be buying another, but I'll definately finish this bottle.

Photo of GPHarris
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006-07 release

a - poured a two fingers thick, creamy off-white head into a snifter. body is a clear dark amber color. nice contrast between head and body color. leaves a thin ring of lace until almost the bitter end.
s - yeast, toffee, floral scents.
t - alcohol is slightly evident at beginning. pine and vanilla are the most pronounced scents.
m - crisp and medium mouthfeel.
d - another solid effort from s.s. but while most of their brews are very good, they are not worth the price in my opinion.

Photo of bgraney
3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear amber, lots of bubbles. Full, fluffy white head.
Mild holiday spice aroma with a slight hop background.
Tastes of plums and raisins with noticeable alcohol presence.
Fairly light on the tongue with a lingering hop bitterness.
Half way through I was thinking I would like another but by the end of the glass I'd decided I'd had enough of that. It's a good, well crafted beer but I didn't find inspiring and I was of the "I could take it or leave it" attitude.

Photo of zeff80
3.57/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours out an amber color with a creamy/tan two-finger head.

S - Smelled of spice/cinnamon and very nutty.

T - It tasted grassy and had hints of oak. A slight bitter bite, too.

M - Cirsp and sharp. Medium-bodied.

D - Pretty good beer. I found it interesting that it tasted very different than it smelled.

Photo of gmcfarre
3.38/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2006/07 Edition 550mL bottle poured into traditional pint glass

A - Clear sunrise orange with a slightly off white 1 inch head. Lacing is solid and lasting.

S - A very yeasty, doughy scent is the first thing I take away from this brew. Perhaps a result of bottle conditioning? Malt sweetness is the main attraction here, with a touch of alcohol becoming evident. An unplaceable spice is apparent as well. Its scent reminds me of certain Belgian Dubbels. Hmmm.

T - Chewy malt sweetness combined with the yeasty dough covers the palate. Sugary sweetness can be a bit biting at times, especially as the beer wears on.

M - Thick and filling with its doughy-esque feel. Carbonation is fairly mild but adds a pleasant effect. Aftertaste is slightly cloying.

D - Very different from the US winter warmers that I have been enjoying this season. Thick with a much milder hop presence, this beer fills quickly leaving me struggling to finish this 550ml bottle.

Photo of cerveza5150
2.93/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours similar to a Newcastle, with a bit more head. The color is dark ruby and large bubbles of carbonation are present.

Smells fruity, with plum and cherry hints on the nose. Hops are present, but smell more metallic than piny or citrusy.

The taste is good, but not overly impressive. It keeps me thinking of a Newcastle or, dare I say it, a Heineken. The 6% ABV warms it up a bit, but you don't find yourself craving it.

Overall, not worth the 3.99 I paid for it. When I'm getting sixer's of Sierra Nevada's Celebration Ale for 7 bucks, I'm not going to waste time on this.

Photo of msubulldog25
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Recently poured a 550ml bottle to a standard pint. The 2006/07 Release in brown glass. Label shows Victorian-era couples ice skating together and contains a Shakespearian quote: "Blessing of Your Heart You Brew Good Ale".

A: Clear light/medium amber color with abundant carbonation and capped with one-finger of fluffy off-white head. Retains the head nicely.

S: Moderate sugary fruit (apple), cinnamon, winter spices. A bit of mulling spice/cider quality. Spicy hops with an herbal bitterness.

T: Roasted nut flavors in the malt. Spiced fruit sweetness with a floral hop-bitter finish. Spiced crisp apple, caramel, slight sourness and then those hops.

M: Surprisingly light mouthfeel. A bit of carbonation prickle and a dry finish, mostly clean.

D: A pretty good beer, enjoyable & drinkable, though not one I'd rave about. Has an ABV on the low end for the style, so it could almost be enjoyed as a session beer. Me, I'd probably have one and move on...worth a try.

Photo of yelterdow
3.24/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

2006/07 Edition, served at between fridge and cellar temperature in Samuel Smith's trademark pint glass. This year's release is packaged in a brown bottle, with the code SH09B1 lasered on the neck.

Appearance- On a traditional pour, this beautiful deep golden beer supports a full, soapy four finger head... crystal clear, with miniscule streams of carbonation rising from below. Even after standing for several long minutes, the crown condenses into a solid, stalwart mass of tight bubbles. Jetties of lacing protrude around the sides of the glass. Very attractive for the style.

Smell- A nice, mineral nose to this beer adds to the biscuity, Fuggles/Goldings hop profile typical for this brewery. I get notes of caramel apples and toast.

Taste- The bready, full malt introduction is countered and balanced well with hops... I really am surprised at the minute level of fragrance and spices used for this brew. The finish is dry and bracing, giving it points for sessionability.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- The effervescence is played way down, to the point of being a bit boring. It's thin and transparent, and for a winter warmer I'd like it to have more body. Where it lacks in mouthfeel, however, this one's hard to beat in drinkability. The solid, balanced experience is easy to put down without much effort.

Photo of Byeast
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear copper color , with a small white lace that remains as a ring.

Smell: some cake like malt , hint of raininbread , hint of alcohol , and very faint spice.

Taste: the malt has a mildly floral/ fruity taste at first , some fruitcake / bready maltiness , light caramel , hint of buttery diacetyl , balancing hop bitterness , and dry grain in the finish.

Mouthfeel: fairly carbonated

Drinkability: A good winter welcome brew to be had every winter season. Nice wintry feel , not quite sweet enough to make me want more than a couple.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Samuel Smith's Winter Welcome Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
83 out of 100 based on 2,009 ratings.