1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Mild Winter - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Mild WinterMild Winter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

867 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 867
Reviews: 370
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 12.16%
Wants: 28
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
English Dark Mild Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Toffee color, dark bread aroma, caramel and rye flavor, medium-light body.

(Beer added by: botham on 08-17-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Mild Winter Alström Bros
Ratings: 867 | Reviews: 370 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BretSikkink
4.05/5  rDev +9.5%

Amber-brown in color, with a tanned head. Lots of highlighting, okay, swirly retention, and some pretty fair legs for style.

The aroma is relatively complex but not hugely aromatic. My first thoughts were of mild barley malt sweetness, a light spiciness, and maybe a touch of apple. Peppery hops complement the rye.

Definitely malty, but not overpoweringly sweet. There is a great balance with the sweet barley and peppery rye flavors that puts this above the rest in this category. A little bit of toffee here, and a finish of apple.

Dry finish with a hint of spicing; medium in the body. Not a bad little sipper at all - Mild Winter is very well balanced, if not terribly exciting.

BretSikkink, Dec 31, 2008
Photo of prototypic
4.1/5  rDev +10.8%

Appearance: This one pours a really nice looking clear, bronze color with a strong garnet hue. It's topped with vanilla colored head that reaches two fingers tall. Retention was good and a very nice sticky coat of lace lined the glass.

Smell: The nose is good, but a little lacking in strength and depth. It's mostly malty and sweet smelling. Smells like a good mix of caramel and toasted malts. There is a distinct spicy aroma to it which is easily attributed to the rye. There's a faint yeasty or doughy aroma. All in all, it's good, but could be improved.

Taste: The flavor profile mimics the nose and suffers from similar (small) flaws. It is indeed sweet and malty. Toasted malts taste a little stronger than the caramel variety, but not by much. Rye spiciness attacks the palate and adds a lot of zeal to the flavor. I like it. A yeasty biscuit-like aroma emerges toward the end. It's not strong, but is noteable. Hops are faint and could use a little bump. It finishes spicy and dry. It could use a little more depth and character, but this is a solid beer.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It features a medium body and holds together well. Nice smooth feel. Carbonation is active and prevents it from reaching a creamy, lush feel. But, it's good. Drinkability is actually very good. It goes down very easy, has a nice flavor, and features a modest abv. I could happily handle a few of these.

Mild Winter is a nice addition to the winter arsenal of great brews. It's unique and I like that aspect of it a lot. It could use a little work across the board, but not much. This is a nice beer as it is. Certainly one I'll pick up again during this time of year. Recommended.

prototypic, Dec 30, 2008
Photo of Redrover
4.13/5  rDev +11.6%

12 oz brown longneck with a bottled on date of 10/27/08. Poured into a pint glass, the beer is a medium brown with subtle red highlights. There is a big creamy beige head & great lacing.

The nose is of malts, citrus, caramel and you can also pick-up the rye which adds a spice note.

The beer tastes of lightly roasted malts, some citrus and the rye which adds a nice finish. The beer is slightly bitter with great balance. It's a bit earthy and a bit juicy. Nice combo of flavors.

The mouth is pleasantly thickish and creamy. Very easy beer to session. Great taste and low ABV add up to a winning brew. I'm glad to see this one added to the seasonal rotation!

Redrover, Dec 30, 2008
Photo of wheatyweiss
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Poured into a pint, Mild Winter is a nice dark rust color with a full head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is of strong caramel malt and dark roasted grain. Flavor is exactly to style. Roasty and grainy, with a mild hop bite. The Rye makes it's way to the front as the predominant grain and the sourness tells you so. Dusty and husky as it should be.

Excellent and refreshing, Goose Island fails to disappoint.

wheatyweiss, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of jar2574
3.33/5  rDev -10%

A rye beer. That's something new for me. It does smell slightly like a rye whiskey, but there isn't much to the smell. The appearance is only average. Flat, little head, brownish color.

The beer is nice though. Sweet, almost syrupy. Not a lot of hops or malts detected. I think it's loaded with wintery spices, so much that it drowns out any maltiness or hopiness. Feels a little artificial, and lacks earthiness as a result.

Doesn't sit that well after a few, because the sweetness will get to you eventually.

jar2574, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of russpowell
3.38/5  rDev -8.6%

Picked this up in Wichita, pours caramel with 2 fingers of cream colored head. Average head retention

S: Slight toasted malt & not much else

T: Peppery rye, dryness & a bit brown bread up front. Rye flavors dominate as this warms along with a bit of grainyness & dryness. Finishes crisp & dry

M: Medium bodied, low carbonation, crisp

Drinks alright, could do a few with a Reuben sandwich to be sure, other wise, I could take or leave this

russpowell, Dec 27, 2008
Photo of larsee01
4.18/5  rDev +13%

12 oz poured into Hoegaarden hexagonal pint glass

A--Beautiful, heady pour. Frothy off-white head with decent carbonation. Nice translucent reddish-brown color.

S--Sweet and mild scent. Tiny coffee notes. Malty and reminiscent of sweet pumpernickel with the slightest sour.

T--Very mild bitter hits first. Malt definitely prominent, but with just a tickle of spicy hop for great balance. Rich, bready goodness the lingering nuance. Picking up a touch of graininess and ghosts of iron. Smooth and balanced.

M--Again, smooth. Creamy and medium-bodied, but I'll be damned if this doesn't fly down the hatch. Perfect viscosity on the palate.

D--Unlike the winter we are having here in Chicagoland (home of Goose Island), this is indeed a "mild" winter ale. Not a lot of the bitterness, full-bodiedness or spices you've come to expect in a winter ale. Mild as advertised. Almost like a fall special. Surprisingly good, and goin' down easy!

larsee01, Dec 26, 2008
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.03/5  rDev +8.9%

Ahh, it's clear to me now. I couldn't figure out the spiciness in this beer until I went to write this review and saw that it was a rye beer. I'd never expect that of a "mild", so good twist Goose Island. Yes, now it all makes sense. I've just been over-run by spicy beers this season that I couldn't see the tree for the forest.

It poured a clear, very deep amber-almost-chestnut body with a ruby cast and orange highlights. The creamy white head held remarkably well, and it left rings of lace throughout the glass. The nose was restrained, but clearly malty, and oddly gently spicy. In the mouth it was medium, or perhaps medium-light, but with a dextrinous edge. The carbonation was fine-bubbled and at a moderate level, and it was gently fizzy but then creamy across the palate once warmed. The flavor followed the nose, and it was mainly malty with a soft caramel edge and a bit of spice. I searched for something to reveal what it was, not exactly finding any cinnamon, or ginger, or any other flavor, but got nothing. It was simply peppery spice. I thought that it was a very mild blend of spices that held steady in the background and didn't really reveal itself. Obviously, that was the rye, but I couldn't see that at the time. And not unlike a rye beer, it finished dry, and mildly spicy-peppery, but also with a bit of hop flavor. Quite nice. Superbly rounded and remarkably well balanced.

NeroFiddled, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of bluemoonswoon
3.35/5  rDev -9.5%

Picked up a six pack of this on a rather snowy day along with a few others from the Goose Island line.

Interesting, a rye beer from Goose Island, a big fan of the style so lets see how it goes.

First off it does not appear like the picture on the six pack. The picture gives the impression that the beer is hazy, but the beer that comes out of the bottle is clear and a slightly ruby colored brown. The head is nice and resembles the fluffy whiteness that appears on the six pack carrier.

Aroma is also not what I was expecting. I am used to Red's Rye's bash you in the face hop and rye hammer, this one lives up to the mild name that reminds me of a toned down Red's Rye, hops are more understaded than the rye which is on the spicier side, but still remains quite mild.

Taste is at first sweet then moves quickly into the hop and rye, the mouthfeel is dishearteningly watery but still maintains a strong enough snappy dryness that clings to the tongue just long enough to give this beer some character. The flavor profile seems a bit washed out with a rye character only just barely able to let you know its there and doing some work.

It is certainly easy enough to drink, the watery, lighter bodied mouthfeel makes it easy going down, but the after a while you sort of forget what you are drinking. I would give this beer a second shot though, I think it has something to offer than maybe I am just not getting right now, I mean Goose Island does make some fantastic beers so this one deserves some extra attention.

bluemoonswoon, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of sgoodship
4.38/5  rDev +18.4%

Picked this up at the JewelOsco grocery store on Des Plaines & Fulton in Chicago. Bottled on 11/11/08.

A: Dark brown at the top and more golden colored at the bottom. Nice one finger frothy head. Really nice spotty lacing as the brew is consumed. Every sip revitalizes the head.

S: Nice bready malt with an exceptional earthy, sour, dry rye malt.

T: Very tasty. A crisp, refreshing start that goes into a lovely round bready malt taste in the middle and finishes with a rye sourness that adds a sharp tang on the palette. Not that familiar with this style but I have found that rye is really appealing to me in general. I love how it quenches the thirst. As the brew warmed up, more of a caramel malt joined the action and it was a really nice addition. The combination of sweetness and sourness almost took on a lemony profile.

M: Feels almost medium bodied - so smooth. Full in the mouth but slight tingly carbonation combined with the rye is so nice and crisp.

D: Lovely brew. It's so easy to get carried away with big beers and forget to appreciate the lovely subtleties of milder brews. This is a wonderfully refreshing beer. Perfectly balanced and just right for a session.

sgoodship, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of champ103
4.38/5  rDev +18.4%

A: Pours a murky brown/amber color. A tiny white cap of foam forms. Some light sticky lace is left behind.
S: A husky grain and musky malty aroma off caramel. Light spice from the rye. Some fruity peaches and pears as well (though very light).
T: At first caramel malt. A light grainy malt flavor. Light fruitiness. Plenty of spice from the rye and cinnamon. The rye spiciness and the malt work really well together.
M/D: A medium to full body that is velvety smooth. Very rich and creamy. This is a great beer to session, even if it has a little to much alcohol for a mild. I can drink this all day, and probably will during Christmas.

This beer is really intriguing. A mix between and English Mild and a Rye Beer. This brings out the best of both. Bring this to your next holiday party instead of generic macro lagers. I would recommend this, and definitely purchase again.

champ103, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of snaotheus
3.93/5  rDev +6.2%

Decent beer, but too much spice in the flavor.

Pretty pour -- dark amber with a tall but light head. Smells like it tastes (spicy and malty). Feels yeasty or bready in the mouth, and I'm looking forward to having a pretty long session of these on Christmas Eve to help me cope with the in-laws-to-be...

snaotheus, Dec 23, 2008
Photo of mothman
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%

Poured into Sam Adams Sensory Glass. Bottled on 10-21-08.

Appearance is a copper orange. Pours an off white head that stays around for a while and leaves pretty good lacing.

A rich malty smell is present, with rye. Taste is quite similiar, but the rye sticks out a lot more. It reminds me of wheat bread also.

Mouthfeel is wonderful. It is so clean and just wanders aimlessly and goes down smooth.

This beer is very easy to drink. Not my type of beer, but I was shocked by how much I actually liked it. This would make a nice session beer.

mothman, Dec 23, 2008
Photo of Tone
4.05/5  rDev +9.5%

Pours a clear, brown with 1/4 inch head. Good lacing and slight retention. Smells of roasted malts and I'm guessing rye. Fits the style. Very sweet, smooth, crisp. Aftertaste is very mild but still a little rye and malt, but mostly sweetness. Low carbonation. Overall, an easy to drink beer and another good Goose Island brew.

Tone, Dec 23, 2008
Photo of brewcrew76
4.18/5  rDev +13%

A - Clear ruby red with a few fingers of tan head that stay fluffys for quite some time.

S - Bready malts, slight mix of biscuit, caramel and toffee, nutty with some spicy rye.

T - Nutty, fresh baked bread and spicy rye.

M - On the light side of medium with good carbonation. Soft and velvety on the tongue.

D - A great session beer. I have gone through several 12 packs already. An easy drinker with a nice rye twist.

brewcrew76, Dec 21, 2008
Photo of tjkurz
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%

Pours deep ruby copper thin head some lacing. At first can smell some malt - caramel. Deep sniff reveals hints of fresh rye - other wise smells of dregs. Tastes carmel malty up front with hoppy bitter finish earthy smokey wet aftertaste. Very drinkable lighter mouthfeel for the flavor. The further down the glass the better I like this beer.

tjkurz, Dec 20, 2008
Photo of b3barron
4.13/5  rDev +11.6%

Poured into a Rowland's pint glass.

A - An aggressive pour yields a small, bubbly off-white head with little retention. Light amber color.

S - Very earthy with caramel malt and a nice but subtle herbal hop aroma. Smells of toasted dark bread.

T - Lightly toasted malt up front. Rye bread and herbal, earthy hop flavor. Finishes dry which rounds out this beer nicely IMO.

M - Rather light bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D - Extremely drinkable. I picked this up last night looking for a session beer for when I tire of IPAs. This really does the trick. I could easily drink a 6 pack and would if I didn't have to hop on a train soon.

It is a straightforward beer but very well-balanced and a low ABV means there is good chance I will be seeking this out again.

b3barron, Dec 20, 2008
Photo of scruffwhor
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Pours a very rusty amber color and an even two finger head that recedes to a thin filmy foam. Not much bubbling and no lacing, but a good color. Very mild toasted malts give a faint hint of Polish rye bread. The hops add a few sprigs of mint to this beer's aroma. Toasted caramel and crystal malts make up more than 50% of this beers favor. There is a good hops presence though. Adds some herbal, even earthy hints and a little astringency to this session beer.

scruffwhor, Dec 20, 2008
Photo of tmoneyba
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Bottle shared by shigadeyo.

Pours a clear dark brown color with an average frothy off-white head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate roasted malt and rye aroma. Medium body with a smooth texture and soft carbonation. Medium roasted bittersweet flavor with a medium bitter finish of moderate duration.

Good drinkable beer.

tmoneyba, Dec 19, 2008
Photo of homebrewhawk
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%

12oz brown bottle served in a shaker pint. Poured a pale brown/amber with a finger of off white head. Aroma of cocoa and a bit of hops. Fairly malty with some chocolate malt. Spritzy mouthfeel, plenty of carbonation. A fresh hop flavor. I didn't realize the rye aspect of the beer as I was drinking, maybe I should read the bottle. Definitely drinkable.

homebrewhawk, Dec 18, 2008
Photo of malty
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Bottled on 11-03-08

Pours a pretty reddish-amber with a loose 1/4" off-white head. Visible large bubbly carbonation visible. Little thin sheets of lace.

Fresh scents of lightly toasted malt with a mineral-like 'wet stone' smell also. Smells very clean.

The flavor IS very clean. The lightly roasted malt is apparent with that good ol' spice only rye malt can deliver. The spice from the rye could even be interpreted as a hop presence, more so in the dryness than the flavor.

Mouthfeel is just a little past light bodied but not quite mid-medium bodied. The carbonation is perfect and the dry & spicy finish is very good.

Drinkability is way high. There's nothing not to love about the cleanliness and low-impact character of this brew.

Overall a very good session beer with a nice spicy 'tink' with a hint of toastiness. The dry and spicy element is well balanced, making this a delight to drink.

malty, Dec 18, 2008
Photo of tburkhart
3.85/5  rDev +4.1%

Courtesy of raznug.

Pours a light copper with trace amounts of carbonation. Thin layer of head that sits nicely on the top.

Smells of rye and slight spice.

Taste heavy of rye in my opinion. No hops to be found anywhere in a 5 mile radius of this beer.

An average beer from Goose Island. Personally, I'm not impressed.

tburkhart, Dec 16, 2008
Photo of TurdFurgison
4.28/5  rDev +15.7%

I picked up a 6-pack for about $7 at Palmers Beverage in Columbus. The beer is very clear copper color with a thick "yeast-cake" head. The smell is sort of neutral, I guess about what I'd expect for a mild beer with some rye, with some roasted malt in the background. The taste is very nice, zest spicy bite from the rye, not too excessive, good counterbalance with some sweetness from the malts. The body is a little more carbonated than a cask ale while retaining the smooth mouthfeel I associate with casks. This is a great beer from Goose Island, hopefully to become a regular seasonal release.

TurdFurgison, Dec 14, 2008
Photo of david131
3.85/5  rDev +4.1%

A- A deep orange/ light brown liquid. The head is white and kind of thin, but the lacing isn't bad. Not a bad looking winter beer.

S- Some rye, caramely malt, kind of oaty. Mild is a good word for it. Maybe a little bit of citrus rind in there.

T- The smell does not really set you up for how this tastes. The aspects of the aroma are all there, but they blend very well together and it works really well. A little bit of vanilla.

M- A very creamy beer. Very appealing.

D- I was not really expecting much from this one. But this is a really nice winter beer.

david131, Dec 14, 2008
Photo of Gehrig
4.3/5  rDev +16.2%

Chestnut brown with burnt orange highlights supports two dense fingers of slightly tan froth, with good duration eliciting a good first impression. I like the flavors that emerge in the smell, but it's rather faint--hazelnut, ginger, and fruit. The taste is much better than the aroma, full of hazelnut, cherry, ginger, and coriander. Malt dominates, but citrus hops protrude now and then to provide a fine balance. The rye malt provides a sweet-and-sour taste, making this a distinct rye winter warmer. Creamy smooth but with good hop flavor and texture, this is sure to please and easy to enjoy.

Excellent beer, and I'm glad I bought extras.

Gehrig, Dec 12, 2008
Mild Winter from Goose Island Beer Co.
84 out of 100 based on 867 ratings.