Winter Warmer - Upland Brewing Company
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Ratings: 118 | Reviews: 66 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by oracle:
3.93/5 rDev +3.4%
Beer arrived a very deep dark maghogany color, almost the color of a porter. You can just discern the redness of it when held up to the light. Rich foamy tan head with comendable endurance and heavy lacing.
Smell was mildly fruity and sweet. No discernable hops or alcohol presense in the nose.
Taste was richly sweet sweet and more sweet. Tons of carmel malt with heavy fruitiness, especially plum and raison. Sligtly syrupy, it stopped short of being cloying, but anymore sweetness would be just too much.
Alcohol clearly present in the taste and quite warming.
Very good, but a bit too heavy to have more than one a night.
01-21-2005 18:29:32 | More by oracle
More User Reviews:
3.95/5 rDev +3.9%
12 ounce bottle, that came as part of a 12 bottle sampler box. Bottled on dating (here Dec. 08) notched onto the label. Pours dark mahogony, dark tan moderate head that leaves fine lacing and a rich malty nose. Malty, malty, malty. Smooth and sultry and dangerously easy drinking. Perhaps on the light side for a BWine. Nice sipper.
08-12-2009 01:12:14 | More by Billolick
4.08/5 rDev +7.4%
Pours a mahogony color with a decent head and very nice sticky lacing. Smells of dark fruit, figs, currants, raisins, and cherry's. No trace of alcohol on the nose. Lots of raisin and fig on the front end of the flavor. This is followed up by cherry's. The finish is odd. I can't place it, but it tastes like a rice cake. Very odd, but pretty good none the less. Mouthfeel is a bit too light for me. I'd like more body to it as well as a bit more heat from the alcohol. If I let it sit on my tongue for a bit I can catch mild carbonation and just a bit of alcohol. The alcohol is still barely noticeable. Overall, this is quite tasty. I'd really like to try the barrel aged version of it.
08-05-2011 17:52:08 | More by 1Adam12
4.2/5 rDev +10.5%
This bottle I'd aged almost 3 years...2008 vintage! Pours with a nice thick head, and some heavy-duty spoke lacing.
Aroma is almost fruity, strong, like dried dark fruit.
Flavor is dried cherry, tobacco, leather, pear, dates...strong and complex. Very little hint as to the rather high alcohol content.
A well tasty barleywine, certainly made more palatable with some age. Enjoyable!
And had a final bottle, tasted again in late 2013 -- so a 5 year-old bottle this time:
Echoes similar flavors as above (candied fruits, berries, and a bit of earthiness), but with an even more sour-sweet character. Not bad at all, and still pretty heavy-duty.
07-31-2011 05:06:58 | More by secondtooth
4/5 rDev +5.3%
Pours a ruby brown, relatively clear but dark enough that you can't see through it. A bit thinner than I expected. The head is a finger thick and a brilliant white on top of the much darker liquid. As the head dies, a creamy layer of white remains perched on top.
There's a really nice balance in the nose between the malty backbone and the floral and citric hops.
Normally I find complexity in the feel, but this beer has it in the taste. It starts off like a nut brown ale, very malty, with some caramel. That maltiness is balanced by the piney, citrusy hops before giving way to the alcohol deep in the swallow.
Very complex. It's sweet initially, but then the barleywine-ness kicks in and you're hit with a bitterness and alcohol pop. However, it's as smooth a barleywine as I've ever had and the bittering hops and high alcohol are slightly muted.
Upland beers are hit or miss for me, but this was a solid hit. I enjoy all types of beer but barleywines aren't my first choice because I can't always feel my tongue the next morning. However, this was unusually tame and very drinkable.
04-01-2012 02:50:35 | More by RickS95
4.1/5 rDev +7.9%
Deep copper color with a thin head that laces well down the glass.
Fruity, chocolatey nose with notes of what I believe to be Simcoe and perhaps Amarillo hops. Bubblegum whaffs, too. Complex, but inviting.
Well-balanced flavors of chocolate, dark fruits, toffee/caramel and mildly bitter hops on the finish.
Smooth, appropriately carbonated mouthfeel. Has a certain crispness to it at this point in its young life.
Drinks very well for its size. Everything is in place here and I'd imagine some deliberate aging will bring on some further toffee/caramel tones that will certainly be welcomed. The hop character keeps this beer particularly interesting and also increases drinkability.
02-29-2004 04:14:56 | More by Jon
3.58/5 rDev -5.8%
Had on tap at the Brewpub.
A- Pours a ruby brown color. One finger tan head shows medium retention. This has nice lacing in long weblike streaks on the sides of the snifter.
S- Lots of caramel malts bring up the base beer and light sweetness throughout the entire aroma. Darker fruits are also in the aroma but only play a lighter backbone to this aroma. Light brown sugar notes as well.
T- Light almost bitter hop bite to this beer. Caramel malts come through next with darker fruits (plum and fig) coming into the middle with a sugary sweetness. Toward the backend of the beer there is a light bitter bite from what I would say are hops with a alcohol warmth in the very tailend.
M- Medium heavy mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little light for the style. Darker fruits and light sweetness left on the palate and long into the aftertaste with kisses of warming alcohol. Medium drying on the palate from the alcohol. Flavors are very malt driven and follow that course. No off flavors in the beer at all which is nice.
D- This beer was good but there was something missing that made it not great. The ABV was pretty apparent the entire beer making it only a drinker for a snifter or two. Nice try Upland but there is something missing with this one.
01-05-2011 06:06:53 | More by alleykatking
3.58/5 rDev -5.8%
22 ounce bottle bottled in November 2011. Served in a snifter, the beer pours a ruby red/copper color with about an inch light tan head that sticks around for a while. There's also a good amount of lacing. It smells like dark fruit, caramel malt, toffee, and some oranges. It tastes like caramel malt, dark fruit (raisins, cherries), oranges, berries, and toffee, along with some pine and herbal hops. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy and slick with moderate carbonation. I thought it was a decent enough brew. And for just $5.49 a bomber, I'd buy this again in the future. It's certainly worth trying, especially at that price.
09-28-2012 22:48:36 | More by bluejacket74
2.65/5 rDev -30.3%
Was served from a growler into a goblet at my friends house. He got it direct from Upland, well obviously, since we live in Bloomington. I personally like Upland, and was excited for the winter warmer. Unfortunately I was dissapointed.
A- It looked decent enough, but with little/ no head. Had a brownish-amber-orange color to it, cloudy showing that it has some character and not watery at all.
Smell- Strong, seeing that it is a winter warmer. Some sweetness underneath this, with a little citrus element.
Taste- Damnit. What a tease. I was expecting something great, but I was really dissapointed. Honestly, it was due to the growler, and it lost a lot of carbonation to it, which might be unfair for this beer. But without any carbonation to it at all, the flavors were just too much. The alcohol was most present, with hardly any of the malt sweetness I had smelled in the malt, and the citrus that I smelled was tasted, but too harsh.
Mouthfeel- Gross. Too thick and too harsh, I just wanted to get it out of the way.
Drinkablility- I could hardly finish a small goblet, so this recieved a low drinkability. I think with the proper carbonation this could be a good beer though.
01-30-2006 05:02:36 | More by thebarnesbomb
4.3/5 rDev +13.2%
12 oz bottle poured into a Corsendonk Christmas Ale stemmed glass. Bottled Nov. '08. No other info.
A - A moderate pour brings fourth a creamy, low one-finger head. Light khaki color with medium retention. A low, thin layer stays with a ring as well as tiny spots of lacing. Noticeable legs on the glass show it's strength. The body is an inactive, clear ruby-highlighted mahogany/copper amber color. Very beautiful and deep in appearance.
S - Toasty malts provide a good hearty backbone to this already complex beer. Caramel hints in the sweetness with a mild toasty cocoa. At the forefront are dried fruits aplenty from both the alcohol level and yeast I imagine. Chocolate covered cherry with light mango and light banana with yeast. The alcohol is strong in this one with fruity aspects, some spiciness, and light fusels. Not overly solvent-like, as it's pretty overpowered by everything else, but it's there. Hops finish off the intensely layered delight with a timid pine and citrus blend that balances everything very well. Huge success on aroma!
T - Strong maltiness kicks this beer off in the right direction. Robust and bread-like, the toasty malts exhibit a caramel sweetness who's marriage to the other flavors presents a near perfect balance for the style. The alcohol is a bit overpowering but the spiciness common to alcohol could definitely be from the hop presence too. Very herbal and moderately floral, the hops also have a light pine/citrus kick to the finish. The balance of this barleywine is pretty well done to style as it finishes bitter. The fruity esters are the same as the nose leads on minus the banana and much more low-key in the flavor. Alcohol presence seems a bit too high however.
M - Full-bodied and robust, its thick and creamy in the mouth with a very smooth, velvety finish. Low level carbonation still gives it a light tingle as the hop bitterness and alcohol warmth rise up.
D - The balance is pretty good on this barleywine for the style. Malty yet hoppy. The noticeable alcohol (even for it's, thus far, extended age) is the killer. Smack in the midst of the malty-change-hoppy flavor, it's higher presence is a bit unwanted. Overall though it's a great example of a barleywine and would make for a great winter warmer as the name suggests. I think I'll have to go back and see if there are any left and hang on to them for the upcoming cooler weather.
08-24-2009 21:36:43 | More by BeerFMAndy
2.33/5 rDev -38.7%
Brown/red/amber, on the clear side, nice head that lasts. Maybe give it a touch more opacity.
Smells oxidized - bitter grassy hops, wet cardboard.
Tastes like an extract homebrew imperial American amber ale - one that I wouldn't be very happy sharing. Lingering bitterness. Kinda sweet, funky, sour, wet cardboard, ditch mud. Not in the English style in the slightest. Not in the American style, either, frankly. The body is hugely lacking for either of those, to start with.
Edit: if they just called it a winter warmer and dropped barleywine from the name, why, it would probably just be average and not bad.
07-03-2009 19:51:48 | More by charlesw
4.38/5 rDev +15.3%
Had on tap at Finch's
Pours a reddish brown with a small tan head that fades away immediately. Decent sticky lacing down the glass.
Smells of caramel and dark fruits. Earthy hop and brown sugar presence as well.
Just a small hop presence with some subtly sweet brown sugar presence hitting the front of the tongue. Lots of caramel throughout with some dark fruits mixed in as well.
Medium-thick mouthfeel without being cloying and medium-low carbonation.
One of my favorite barleywines and I look forward to it every year. Good and warming without being cloying sweet like many of the style. Very pleasant to sip during dinner.
12-04-2011 19:42:00 | More by jmarsh123
3.9/5 rDev +2.6%
A very hazy and cloudy ruby tinted light brown liquid emerged from the bottle. Some light carbonation could be seen streaming up from the bottom of the glass and a touch of yeast was seen floating as well. A light head, maybe a quarter inch rose up at first pour, though the second and third pour produced much more. Decent side glass lacing.
The aroma was nice, albeit a touch light. Very sweet smelling with the candy sort of aroma that you tend to find with an aged barley wine. Some light hints at the hops, but mostly faded into the sugary malt profile that dominated this one. The flavor was just great though, a very solid malt base had mellowed everything very nicely. Not a touch of alcohol in this one at all, in fact I found myself drinking this one wayyy too fast for my own good as time went on. Rich and again very sweet, it was like a kid in the candy store. So smooth with a nice medium, well carbonated body that only lended itself to being even more sippable.
06-27-2011 01:56:48 | More by mikesgroove
3.48/5 rDev -8.4%
I little lightweight for a barleywine, even for the English style and weighing in at 9% abv. Caramel color, some nutty malt in the aroma. Up front a bit sweet, then mellowing to a caramel malt with moderately sharp hops afterbite, some pepper from the abv. Nothing wrong with this beer, but if you are going to denote something as a winter warmer, it should be a bit more distinctive.
03-03-2010 13:51:19 | More by Brent
3.95/5 rDev +3.9%
Deep russet brown with plenty of suspended chunks of yeast visable and a creamy mocha head. Caramel, fig, raisin and toasted grain with a touch of rum in the aroma. Rich and malty with butterscotch and black strap molasses up front with a mineraly water and herbal hop in the warm alcoholic finish. Medium bodied and a little over-carbonated for my liking. A solid beer but I like the Bourbon barrel version a lot better.
06-03-2011 23:05:39 | More by biggred1
4.22/5 rDev +11.1%
It is freezing outside, so this is the one for me today.
A- poured slightly hazy with amber color. nearly no head, but what was there was gone in seconds. no big deal.
S- of toasted toffee and caramel. slight hop character and alcohol is hidden well.
T- not bad, not super syrupy for an English style. light hop tones with semi-sweet malt character. I like.
M- mild carbonation, which is expected and smooth.
D- if this beer were sold in my area, i would buy it more. Very nice Winter Warmer.
01-09-2010 18:26:04 | More by jbone78
3.2/5 rDev -15.8%
Amazingly slow head cascade action. Strange patches of bubbles throughout body of beer.
Deep dark rich amber coloration. Clear from yeast or other floaties. Fat 2 inch head that's dark brown and leaves a nice happy trail.
From cold the beer smells much like a low alcohol brown ale. How they pulled that off, I do not know. When it gets warmer notes of almond, plunm, raisin, and a leather malt sweetness appear. You have to keep your nose well-tuned to smell the alcohol, but you'll surely taste it on the palate.
There's a little too much of liquid raisin / heavy caramel thing going on here. They decieve well with the high ABV but the sweetness borders on the cloying: i'd want no more than one. The mouthfeel is also a bit lacking for the style.
05-09-2004 02:47:10 | More by GreenWBush
Winter Warmer from Upland Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 118 ratings.