1. American Craft Beer Fest is this weekend in Boston, Mass. Join us for 640+ beers from 140+ brewers! Tickets for Friday, May 29 are still available. Cheers!

Winter Ale - Mt. Carmel Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Winter AleWinter Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

72 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 72
Reviews: 38
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 12.53%
Wants: 3
Gots: 5 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mt. Carmel Brewing Company visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheBierBand on 02-01-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view more.
Ratings: 72 | Reviews: 38
Reviews by blakesell:
Photo of blakesell
4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 12oz. bottle (fresh) listed on the bottle as 8% ABV, 36.8 IBU. Poured into a German style stein.

Appearance- Beer pours a ruby brown with a healthy two and a half finger head that dissipates fairly quickly and leaves ample lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell- Not a lot going on in the nose sadly enough, I'm getting carmelly malts and cinnamon. Not much hop presence, very bready. Not bad, not that special/amazing either. I guess I can catch a hint of the nutmeg that is claimed on the bottle.

Taste- the taste is greater than the smell and I really like the flavor going on here, the nutmeg and ginger are more powerful than the cinnamon, and the balance of the spices are very nice. The malts are extremely balanced for a beer of this gravity. I would have liked to see more balance like this than spice rack attack that I saw for last year's xmas.

Mouthfeel- Not warming, medium in carbonation, not cloying, medium full bodied, very nice.

Drinkability- I really like this one, in fact, I would go so far as to say this is my number 3 winter beer of this season. Too bad I only got one bottle. I'll pursue more next time I'm out to the southwest.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Mora2000
3.56/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is very one dimensional and is very heavy on the toffee. I don't get anything else. The flavor is toffee, caramel and chocolate. I was expecting some spices in the beer and I don't get any. Still, the flavor is pretty nice and the beer is easy to drink. The alcohol is well hidden. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.08/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Mt. Carmel other than biblical references what else is Mt. Carmel known for? Beer in Cincinatti, Ohio. Deep caramel body with a dark crimson beer with an even keeled light khaki tan head forming thick above the beer. Fine even speckled lace going on, let's smell it.

Deep spice notes, citrus peel, caramelized sugar notes equal golden. A hint of sugar, caramel flavor sweetness with orange peel bitterness, spice conundrum.

Flavor, sadly enough this is the best beer I've tasted from Mt. Carmel...creamy spicy tones with a bitter backend finally making sense as all of the flavors meld. Dark roasted malt character brings on another bitter aspect that the beer simply didn't need.

Mouthfeel, has some cloying aspects with big unfermented honey notes, and cloying rip roaring spice additions citrus peel weighing heavy in a moderately carbonated medium to full bodied winter ale.

Drinkability is pretty pour I couldn't imagine myelf indulging in another beer like this, ever again in fact.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.19/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

64 ounce growler bought at Jungle Jim's. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours very dark brown, with a 2 inch tan head after an agressive pour. However, the head didn't stick around for very long and left minimal lacing. Aroma is very nice, it smells like cinnamon, roasted malt, nutmeg, pepper and dark fruit (plums, raisins). It's obviously a very fruity and spicy aroma. Taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, spicy and fruity. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium with average but zippy carbonation. It's a bit on the thin side, but you can still tell there's some substance in this brew. Drinkability is very good, it's smooth and goes down easy. Overall I think it's an enjoyable beer, I'll have to pick up more of this next winter if Mt. Carmel decides to make this a yearly release.

Photo of Bierguy5
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, 8% abv. Chestnut to mahogany in color, with some ruby edges. Tan head fades almost immediately, but does leave a few spots of lace.

Toffee, caramel, cinnamon, a bit of orange peel. A bit of ginger fades in as well.

Malt is toffee-like, and has a bit of a bready character. Cinnamon comes through, orange peel and a hint of ginger. Some sweetness like a Christmas cookie. Finishes a bit dry.

Body is a bit lacking and thin. Adequate carbonation. Some warmth from alcohol. Overall, not bad.

Photo of buschbeer
3.72/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle
Served in a perfect pint glass

A - It is a ruddy brown with rust highlights. An inch of mocha head tops it.

S - I get some caramel malt, but it is complimented by some cocoa and cinnamon.

T - The taste has more of a cocoa backbone. I get a hint of cinnamon.

M - Medium

O - It's a solid winter warmer. It doesn't knock my socks off, but I could drink a few of these.

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

Poured a deep dark amber color, with a spiced wassail nose. Putting emphasis on the spices, this is a flat out strong winter ale. Remarkably more complex than first impression, it has a mouth filling palate where orange notes combine with citrus like hop bitterness, completed by a long dry finish.
With ample malt support, this presentation of spices is balanced and festively good.

Photo of scottyshades
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bamadog for the bottle!

A: Pours a deep ruby/brown color with a small off-white cap. Retention is not too great

S: Overripe red fruits and berries, lots of caramel, toffee, light molasses, caramel malts, and a touch of spice. The nose is a little shy, but seemingly balanced

T: Thin flavor, but well done. An underlying sweetness, followed by a bit of spice and cocoa powder. Artificial red fruits and berries in the background. Malts give some sweetness and caramel flavor

MF/D: Too thin for the style in my opinion, which is shocking considering the 8% ABV. Alcohol is well hidden throughout.

Notes: Tasty beer, but nowhere near the likes of Cigar City's Warmer Winter or Anchor's Christmas Ale. Glad to try it, and thanks for the bottle bamadog

Photo of kirkpjr
3.72/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes - 5/2/10.

Poured from the bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

A: Dark mahogany and copper with some amber highlights. 1 and 1/2 fingers of head. Lacing slides down the glass without sticking very much.

S: Caramel and vanilla on top of sweet malts. Subtle spices - maybe cinnamon and nutmeg.

T: Malt is a little overpowering and overwhelming at first. The spices come in lightly at the finish.

M: Moderate carbonation and medium body.

D: Goes down fairly smoothly. Nice winter style beer. Spices cut down a little on the drinkability.

Photo of BB1313
3.79/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a transparent dark brown with ruby highlights, huge slightly off white head and very sticky lacing. This is a VERY good looking brew. The aromas are subtle and plain. I'm picking up some earthy spices and a slight fruitiness. Floral. Raisins and caramel in the mix as well. Berries and more dark fruit. The flavors really come through in the taste, not the nose. Lots of honey, ginger, and spices.. but no cinnamon, it's not one of those kind of winter ales. I'm picking up on the spruce and orange peel. Lots of cocoa and a touch of coffee. For a split second I thought I was drinking a porter/stout based on the taste, but no. The flavors aren't in your face, but bold enough and pretty tasty. Mouthfeel is really nice, smooth, and creamy. Very easy to drink, I like it! Alcohol goes unnoticed and I'd never guess this was 8% abv.

This is a very solid winter ale.. more along the lines of Avery Jubilation and Anderson Valley Winter Solstice. Very fitting for the cold weather.. recommended.

Photo of zdk9
2.45/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

A- Pours a deep rich mahagony that turns ruby in the light. Not a lot of head. Traces of ridged lacing like a crimped pie crust outline.

S- Not a lot of aroma, mostly malt- dark wheat bread, sweet malt syrup, a little roasty but not much. Can't smell any ginger or spices as the label mentions.

T- More roast then the smell. Still a lot of malt. Darker than the smell. A little smokiness.

M- Leaves a sweet residue in the mouth and on the lips.

O- A little one note. I definitely would have liked some more spice. Nothing particularly wrong with it, but not a lot going on.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.08/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clean orange-ish to amber color with a light tan head. In the aroma, sweet ginger and a orange citrus. In the taste, dry spruce balanced with a orange citrus. A spice bite and a medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry ginger and orange juice citrus in the aftertaste. The ginger is a bit much and a big orange juice like citrus, decent, but almost too spicy.

Photo of PDXHops
2.46/5  rDev -33%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 ounce bottle courtesy of Ryan011235, poured into a Duvel tulip in January '11. Dark amber with 2 fingers of creamy off-white head. Good retention and a fair amount of lacing.

Disclaimer: I'm not a fan of 'empty the spice rack' winter warmers.

Assorted pie spices linger behind caramel and roasted malt aromas. Come sippin' time, the lingering is over; the spices rule the roost here. There seems to be a fair amount of hop character and the malt profile is pleasant, but the spices drown everything out. A solid brew seems to be lingering underneath the spices, but this seems to be a pie spice tea as much as a beer. Not a brew I'd revisit.

Photo of Ryan011235
3.91/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter on 12/12/10

Courtesy of CruisaC

Though it pours a flat brown, the beer settles dark with a ruby sheen at the bottom of the glass. The head was slow to rise so I went for a more aggravated pour, upon which a two finger head came cascading. Thin layer of bubbly foam & nice swaths of lace remain.

Aromas of baked bread, spices & hints of orange zest. At first the nose struck me as unevenly hoppy, like the alpha acids simply weren't mingling with the malt bill. Warmth & swirling drive away that notion, as smooth maltiness takes the stage.

Tastes similar to the latter incarnation of the nose. Dry, baked bread flavors are robust & have a toasty edge. Spices are worked throughout, well-manned all the while. Earthy hops & a slight citric twinge offer bitterness of the rounding-out variety.

Medium bodied but with a half-syrupy feel. Moderate carbonation brings a little agitation to the tongue (granted, I swirled some away but this is hardly an overly prickly beer). Finely granulated grit. Dry finish with lingering notes of toasted bread & spice.

This is an easy-sipping winter warmer; good malt & hop balance, just enough spice & far from being sweet. It certainly doesn't hurt that the 8% abv is all but hidden.

Photo of kels
3.44/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a nice ruby-tinged rich brown. It has moderate clarity, and the carbonation within rises nicely to the surface of the beer. The initial 1 finger eggshell-hued head fizzles out pretty much immediately to a soft, spotty skim. Lots of stringy, sticky lace remains behind.

Not a whole lot of aroma off this one. There's a hint of the darkly roasted malt - somewhat chocolatey, somewhat dry and biscuity. Maybe a touch of cinnamon, but nothing else, really.

Beer is light, yet flavorful. The malts show a good balance between rich roast and crunchy toast. The spices are really light, with just the cinnamon cutting through. There's a weird lingering aftertaste that reminds me of Worcestershire sauce, but it doesn't detract really, oddly enough. Carbonation is fully and fizzy, keeping the overall profile bright in the face of the warming and toasty flavors.

Pretty drinkable. Could definitely use an extra something in the aroma or taste to distinguish it a bit, but it's a decently drinkable beer.

Photo of dorianmarley
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is brown with copper red hints. Light head that leaves great lacing.

Nose is nutmeg, ginger and spruce, with sweet caramel.

Taste is cinnamon and hops that don't entirely blend together. There is also orange and a displeasing coppery finish. Great breadiness the whole way through.

Mouthfeel is smooth, with a nice hop/spice bite, but not enough substance to support the thick flavors.

Overall, it doesn't have everything you would want in a winter warmer. It has spice, but it is clouded by the pungency of the hops. The flavors do not all work well together. That said, this is a great example of quality bread flavor.

Photo of brown2cu
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a dark dark brown with a moderate head that dissipates as the beer warms. It leaves a moderate amount of lacing that fades gradually.

Smell: Incredible! The smell is predominantly consisted of the plethora of spices that went into the brew. You can if you strain your nose enough detect a fair amount of malt and really faint hops.

Taste: Spices, Spices, and more spices balanced off with malt and a faint hoppyness in the back. The alcohol is barely detectable until swallowed where the warming sensation is immediately noticeable. Incredible taste altogether, the spices are just a bit cloying after awhile.

Mouthfeel: heavy with moderate carbonation.

Drink: The ABV on this one is pretty gnarly which cuts down on its drinkability, I'm perfectly satisfied with a single bottle after a meal. If you want a good session beer of this style I would pick up an old fezziwig from Sam Adams.

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

Thanks to FtownThrowDown for the extra. Poured into 10 oz snifter glass. Pours a dark amber color showing nice head and lace that lasts well throughout. Aroma of spruce, ginger, and orange comes out. A nice winter warmer overall, but had a disappointing finish towards the end which was a little flatish. It was nice to taste a winter warmer from a local brewery from Cincy.

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

A- Pours a dark, reddish-amber color with an off-white head that diminishes somewhat quickly...decent lacing left on the glass

S- Fairly spicy aroma (ginger, nutmeg, some cinnamon too) but is balanced nicely with some sweet malts and good amount of hoppiness...

T- Wow, very well balanced brew...the spiciness you would expect out of a good winter beer is there, but so is a good amount of hops and maltiness as well...pretty damn good!

M- Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation

D- A very drinkable beer...this has quickly jumped up the list as one of my favorite winter brews, and at 8% it can easily live up to its 'winter warmer' label in more ways than one...if you can get your hands on it, its definitely worth a try

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an amber color with white/yellow head. Aroma of sugary malts and a bit of booze. In the taste, brown sugar, cocoa powder, and nutty malts. Low bitterness and even balance. Medium bodied and well carbonated. Drinks easily given the strength. Overall a great beer, really tasty.

Photo of superspak
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, no bottle dating, but it is from 2011. Pours hazy brick red color with a nice 2 finger dense khaki head with incredible retention that reduces to a thick cap that lasts. Spotty lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of big ginger, cinnamon, caramel, nutmeg, honey, citrus, biscuit, and molasses. Fairly nice aromas with decent strength. Taste of big caramel, cinnamon, brown sugar, allspice, ginger, honey, light fruitiness, and herbal spice. Good amount of spices linger on the finish; with caramel, light fruits, cinnamon, ginger, and honey for a bit. Nice balance of flavor and spices here; turns out to be very smooth and drinkable, without being cloying. Alcohol is very well hidden for 8%, with only a slight warming after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a slightly creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Overall this is a very nice winter warmer. Plenty of spice character, yet still has nice malt balance.

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

I've had several of the Mt. Carmel beers since they started bottling a couple of years ago, but it's not really something that I consider a "go-to" kind of beer. However, this one will now be one that I pick up annually -- I thought it was pretty solid. Review is from notes taken on 12/3/2010 and poured from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark chestnut brown; really no head to speak of, just a very thin skim and ring around the surface; body is dark, but seems fairly clear; no lacing is left behind at all.

Smell: Quite a bit of toffee and caramel; a slight sweet breadiness; mild spiciness, like ginger and orange peel. Not too bad, fairly robust.

Taste: Not too bad, a fair amount of baking spices like ginger and nutmeg is right up front; a sweet malty breadiness and a definite presence of orange and orange peel; just a very slight presence of alcohol and it rounds out with a nice, earthy roastiness to it. Quite nice on a cold night, really takes the name "winter warmer" to heart.

Mouthfeel: Body is between light and medium in weight and it's just a tad oily; carbonation is present, but it's very soft and it lends to a smooth and slick finish; a moderately thick and sticky coating is left all over the mouth and the belly is left just a little warm from the ABV.

Drinkability: A nice sipper with warm flavors -- definitely one of Mt. Carmel's better beers thus far. The weight isn't too bad, but I do feel that the ABV would start to sneak up, so I would likely limit myself to 2 in a night, but overall, if I'm sipping on it, I could make it last for an evening.

Photo of ONUMello
3.14/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Rich, dark brown, with a creamy-looking two-finger head that lingers.
S: Ginger, nutmeg, caramel.
T: Similar to the nose- toasted bread, baking spices, and caramel. Simple, not bad but not complex.
M: Lighter than I expected; crisp but I would have preferred medium-bodied and rich. Surprised to see 8% alcohol as it does not show it.
O: Glad I tried it, but average.

Photo of jibjib513
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving Type: Bottle to pint glass.

Appearance (4.0): Darker than expected, a very dark reddish brown color with off-white head that clings to the side of the glass nicely. Though dark, it is clear and clean.

Smell (4.0): Nothing stands out to me, except it does smell like a brown ale.

Taste (3.5): Again, it taste like a brown ale to me with caramel hints. The bottle says "spruce & ginger mingled with flavors of orange-spiced bread". That may be true but I'm not able to distinguish it.

Mouthfeel (3.5): It's just right, not too heavy, not too light.

Overall (3.5): For my overall impressions, I'm judging this beer based solely on how I am enjoying it, and could enjoy it on a cold winter night, well after Christmas. And with that in mind, I think this beer would go down great.

Photo of stewart124
4.32/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark amber with some red highlights. Visible carbonation with little head.

Dark carmel notes present in the aroma. Some prune and raisin in the nose.

Medium bodied with a smooth pleasing overall character. Nice spice mix of cinnamon and allspice that blends very well with the darker caramel malts. More caramel than anything this has some vanilla and raisin in the aftertaste.

Very easy to drink and the 8% alcohol is hidden. No phenolic alcohol notes. Some buttery diacytl that adds to the complexity. Really nice biscuity flavors which seems to push this towards an English winter warmer.

This beer has really worked it's way into one of my favorite winter warmers. Subtle spices and caramel blend wonderfully to make this so easy to go down.

to view more.
Winter Ale from Mt. Carmel Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 72 ratings.