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!

Never Summer Ale - Boulder Beer / Wilderness Pub

Not Rated.
Never Summer AleNever Summer Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

546 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 546
Reviews: 342
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 12.43%
Wants: 3
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boulder Beer / Wilderness Pub visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: comat0se on 04-28-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 546 | Reviews: 342 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Half is carmel and X thickness on the tongue, and half is a hopped apple and citrus fruitiness. Somewhat lagerish and also an ale. Some peachy colour, and a maltiness in the aroma. The X could be some wheat or even flour, there may be some cinammon in here. Not a bad one.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2008 03:38:06 | More by Sammy
Photo of djrn2
djrn2

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -3.3%

11-22-2012 21:40:51 | More by djrn2
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a moderately dark brown color with a bit of red in there. Nose brings forward some caramel malt and a little bit of apple as well as some light hops. Taste is pretty malty without much spice, as would be expected. Caramel and some brown sugar with a bit of apple and lighter fruits. Medium, creamy body with good carbonation. A good beer, and a nice alternative to many of the overspiced editions that find their way around during the winter.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2010 22:55:52 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brick red-influenced bronze with ripe orange accents. The toffee colored head is thickly creamy and craggy, sits at two fingers for a bit and eventually leaves patchwork lace on the sides of the glass. Never Summer resembles a winter warmer more than an APA (since changed to an American Strong Ale).

The impressively aromatic nose is chock full of sweet caramel and abundantly spicy, citric hops. I'll accept the fact that there are spices present ('secret Brewmaster's spice' to be exact), but I could also believe that this aroma resulted from nothing other than the standard malt, hops and yeast. Very nice.

The beer is a boldly flavored, near equal mix of malt and hops and is definitely not for the faint of palate. If I didn't know any better, I'd have said that shovelfuls of Chinook hops were used (the actual hop bill consists of Nugget, Willamette and Cascade). Although Never Summer lacks the sheer power and unrelenting hoppiness of Arrogant Bastard, it does remind me of that beer due to the heavily caramelized brown sugar-covered grapefruit peel flavor. It also provides a nice 'spruce goose' to the taste buds in addition to all the citrus zest.

Spice is even more apparent on the palate than it was in the nose, but there's too much flavor from malt and hops to tease out any specifics. The beer is sweet and bitter at once with a long, lingering, mouth coating, increasingly bitter finish. For a winter warmer, the mouthfeel is medium. If we insist on calling it an APA (it isn't), then it's medium-full.

Never Summer Ale (a great name and a great label) is a 'tweener' and deserves some credit for originality. It comes off as a slightly weaker, less complex, hoppier version of a classic winter warmer. I found it to be delicious and will definitely look for it again. Keep an eye on the Looking Glass series of beers from Boulder. The two that I've had so far have been excellent.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2004 22:07:36 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear dark red in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense beige head that gradually died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are aromas of sweet caramel malts in the nose. Some hints of spices become noticeable as the beer warms up.
T: Like the smell, the taste is quite malty and has flavors of caramel along with notes of spices and herbal hops. There is some sweetness, but it's not cloying because there are enough hops to help keep things in check.
M: It feels a little more than medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is a nice beer to sip on a chilly night. It doesn't really provide any heat from the alcohol but the malty nature of this beer helps to warm you up from the inside.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2012 03:33:08 | More by metter98
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber color with a modest head that leaves the occasional shard of lace

Smell: Big caramel base aroma with a grassy hop element wafting through

Taste: Opens with a pithy and grassy bitter flavor that is joined by the caramel base and becomes increasingly herbacious by mid-palate; after the swallow, the caramel tones pick up but the finish continues to display a bitter almost medicinal aspect

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: As the beer warmed, it was a little easier to enjoy, but it has a harshness and a lack of balance that is a detraction

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2007 04:30:35 | More by brentk56
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

3.05/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Aroma: Nice and malty. Combined with a hearty dosage of caramel and nuts. Mild spiciness perhapse from the hopping.
Appearance: Deep Copper to medium brown. 1 inch head that shrank quickly to about a quarer inch and stayed. Off white head, tight bubbles. Moderately carbonated. little to no belgian lace.
Taste: Definate caramel and nutty flavors on the nose. Hops become more prevailant in the body to create a nice balance. Finishes a bit metalic and weak. But must say, a nicely balanced winter beer.
Aftertaste: Most weak and metalic. Hops stick around and clear your throat for the next sip. Tacky mouthfeel, but enjoy the sweetness.
Impression: A nice winter beer. More hoppy than most, but that is my preferrence. Good beer for the money.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2005 18:35:04 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a rich mahogany-hued body with a small, frothy, ivory-colored head.

Smell: Aroma full of spice and herb sprinkled caramel with a bit of spruce underneath.

Taste: Dry caramel flavor with a restrained sweetness. Tastes of spice and dried herbs. Medium bitterness. A few spruce tips. Light herbal, bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: It's okay! Relatively mild in terms of flavor and spice character when compared to it's winter warmer brethren. Which is fine, as some of the ones on the far end can, frankly, be rather gross.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2008 22:14:01 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of jaydoc
jaydoc

Kansas

3.75/5  rDev +3.6%

10-28-2013 02:01:50 | More by jaydoc
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I believe this is my first Boulder Beer offering even while living in Denver did I ever try any of their products.Anyways a nice pour from this beer,a deep rich amber with 1/2 finger white head,aromas were malt dominant mainly brown sugar and a touch of vanilla.A winter warmer in its big sweetness with brown sugar really hitting strong with notes of caramel and spiced cherry the hops have little presence with a light drying herbal effect in the finish.Nice flavors but I think it could be a little cloying after one or two and "generous" hops per the bottle were not there,still a decent beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2006 01:17:20 | More by oberon
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

4.05/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a light burgandy color with a reddish tint. It had atan, bubbly, one-finger head that left nice traces of lace.

S - It smelled of tons of malt and a little spice.

T - It tasted of bittersweet roasted malt. There was also a little nutmeg and cinamon flavors.

M - It was crisp and smooth. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a very nice winter warmer. It has a nice blend of malt and spices.

Serving type: bottle

01-11-2008 02:40:54 | More by zeff80
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2003 edition, cellared for 8 months or so. Pours a clear, ruby-tinted chestnut beneath a creamy head of ivory foam that holds well and leaves some nice rings of craggy lace at the outset of the glass. Piney and citrusy hops ride atop a delicate caramelish malt in the aroma. The body is medium and it's got a surprisingly fine-bubbled, moderate carbonation that lends a light caress to the tongue before allowing it to fade smoothly away. The hops and malt indicated by the nose are exactly what's found in the flavor. They're well-entwined and work almost as one with the fruitiness of the citrusy hops giving a bit of a spark to its otherwise dry, slightly molasses-kissed malt. Piney hop flavor and a bit of spice (?) appear at the swallow as its bitterness steps forward. It finishes dry and lingering with bitterness, pine, and sublime spice. A decent enough holiday or winter beer that's probably worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2004 16:48:14 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - One and a half fingers of light brown head on a clear, amber-brown body with some chunks of sediment. Good head retention and moderate lace.

S - Moderate pine hop aroma with notes of caramel and toffee.

T - Pine hops and brown, toasty malt up front. The hop flavor peaks in the middle then settles to a moderate bitterness. Darker malt notes in the finish, lots of toffee, carmel and some chocolate.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - Drinkable, though it is a bit too heavy for a session beer. The hop character is ok, but kind of generic. The malt character is very nice and really makes the beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2009 06:13:14 | More by nickfl
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malts, nuts, spices, some fruit and a little bit of hops.

T: The taste is malty up front with flavors of spices, caramel and some fruit, but it's not overly sweet. There's a hearty malt character and a decent hops presence but there doesn't seem to be as good of a balance as there should be. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, decent representation of style, there are definitely several beers within the style that I would choose over this one.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2009 03:07:19 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

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

Appearance: bright, clear crimson color, with a decent, cream-colored thinnish head.
Aroma: very mild, but sweet, malty, notes of caramel, nuts, a touch of toffee.
Taste: very minor hops, large malt, recurrent sweetness, almost treacly, the further we sip into it. Body is medium at most, texture/ mouthfeel sticky and sweet, and brief. I think I had this before when it was called Big Sky Powder Hound. That's the closest thing I can conjure to this...certainly not in the league of Young's Winter Warmer, though not too far away from Samuel Smith's in the flavor, now that I think of it.
"Herbed/Spiced Beer", though? Not out of this bottle!
I thought that since this was in their Looking Glass Series, it would be a bit on the wilder, not the milder side, and I was wrong. Not a bad beer, very drinkable, with an appreciable taste, but certainly a far cry from what I was thirsting for...

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2003 10:03:30 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap @old chicago here. Poured caramel/chestnut with 1" of pearl-white head. Average lacing & head retnetion

S: Breadyness, a bit of caramel

T: Caramel & breadyness up front. Leafy hops take over along with a little brown sugar as this warms. Leafy hops & a bit of caramel sweetness in the finish

MF: Medium-bodied & a touch over-gassed, nice balance

Drank easy, but just a tad too simple for as winter warmers go. Slightly better tap IMO

Serving type: on-tap

12-21-2007 20:14:07 | More by russpowell
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

West Virginia

3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served up at Fuel and Fuddle in Oakland the other night while listening to the "Saturday Night Special" Don Zjak playing his style "whiskey blues" good mix of everything switching it up between his ol' Gibson acoustic and Fender backed by his boy Frank George on the sax and harmonica. Now that I set the mood here's this seasonal outta Colorado appears dark caramel amber ruby with a tan two finger sized head leaves even amount of lace. Aroma contains pine cone scented hops caramel doughy dosed malt backbone. Taste is pretty even not as aggressively hopped as the label claims it is, still solid hop flavor and bitterness the pine and caramel mix to form a nice Christmas seasonal. Mouthfeel is medium bodied evenly carbonated smooth finish goes down quite nicely. Drinkability solid hoppy winter warmer not my favorite for the season but definitely a beer I would revisit in the right setting.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2006 00:47:24 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +3.6%

05-07-2013 13:49:46 | More by Slatetank
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

3.73/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark ruby red color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice malty scent that boasts of pale, crystal, and roasted malts along with mild hop aroma. The taste is decent. It has a toasted caramel flavor that goes down easy and finishes light and slightly warm. The mouthfeel is decent. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good seasonal beer. It has good aroma and a nice malty flavor; a good drinker.

Serving type: on-tap

08-05-2005 01:16:25 | More by WesWes
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

2.88/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Pinocchio's, Media, PA

A: Clear, amber-brown, light off-white head.

S: Bready, nutty, roasted malts.

T: Lightly roasty malts, kind of unspectacular for a beer labeled as a winter warmer.

M: Medium body. Some carbonation.

D: Smooth, and easily drinkable, but disappointing if you were expecting flavor and/or spiciness of a winter warmer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-13-2010 21:07:32 | More by Rifugium
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

3.43/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a radiant glowing redish with an average off-white head. looks fantastic! nose is candied sugars and perhaps a slight spice infusion, backed up by what is sure to be a sturdy malt body. yup, there it is, not as sweet as the nose might indicate, balanced nicely for the heavier mouthfeel. modest carbonation lets this one gently prickle the palate a bit as it goes down. overall a pretty good start to the winter warmer season here, but with an abv under 6%, i am going to be searching for something "warmer" come the snows.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2011 01:11:31 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a frothy, initially three-finger thick, creamed-amber colored head that leaves a touch of lacing on the sides of the glass. The beer is brilliantly clear and shows a pretty, deep reddish color when held up to the light. The aroma is certainly hop focused with notes of citrus fruits and herbal pine notes being dominant. Notes of grapefruit, tangerines, & lychees combine to form the citrus component. There is a definite backdrop of malt here though. First off a caramelized malt note is apparent, it is followed by a touch of toasted grain character and perhaps even a hint of roasted character. This has a really nice aroma, it is still quite fresh and hoppy and, while the hops are dominant, I like how the hops interplay with the darker malt notes.

Light and easy drinking, the beer starts out with a touch of malt sweetness and some accentuated hop-like citrus notes of bergamot, candied orange peel and rough ruby-red grapefruit. Herbal notes of pine and menthol mix in the middle and lead to a nicely bitter finish, that lingers on brightly in the finish. Caramelized malt sugars help to give this beer a berry like fruitiness, which combines well with the hop character. As the beer warms up, there is a touch of toasted grain, and even some roasted almost coffee notes noticeable in the finish. As my palate & nose gets used to the beer a strong, fresh berry note becomes quite noticeable.

This beer is eminently drinkable right now, light and quaffable, yet has lots of flavor to keep one interested, but not so much as to distract one from a social session of beer drinking. With an apparent lack of bottle conditioning it will probably deteriorate pretty quickly (like the mojo, which is stellar fresh, but ages quickly), so get some fresh and drink it up.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2006 04:58:23 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

4.25/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours ruby-red - nice color/clarity - poor head retention, other than a small swirl.

The smell is bready with pine and caramel.

The taste is of dark caramel balanced by citrus and pine. It has an underlying lemony zest. Just enough alcohol comes through to make it a winter beer, but mild and non-interfering. Hops stay just ahead of the sweet, caramel-ish malt. Nicely textured with a medium to full body. Smooth for the style.
One of the better winter brews out there. Not the most "warming" or spicy but tasty and "sessionable" for the style.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2007 00:31:17 | More by jwc215
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

4.18/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark copper color, clear. Relatively thin slightly off-white head. Good lace.

Sweet sugary smells of high levels of malt--mostly crystal. Some alcohol aroma, but not overwhelming like some strong ales.

Surprising amounts of hop--provides for very nice balance. Normally I'm not a fan of strong ales, but this one has some depth. Expectedly full bodied (like cream), although the carbonation is a touch low. The malts are interesting and quite dry. The aftertaste is mostly hop bitterness.

I like this one very much. It is multidimensional and full-flavored.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2006 22:27:04 | More by smcolw
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear copper in color with a 1" head that lingers around a while. No lacing develops.

Smell: very light caramel and fruit sweetness are barely detectable.

Taste: caramel and a nice piney bitterness are up front, with some plums and pears rounding it out. The sweet and bitter balance is pleasant and enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp at the start and smoother towards the finish. Caramel and pine tones stick to the tongue briefly after swallowing. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: easy to quaff and could be a nice staple in the refridgerator for the winter months.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2006 13:22:49 | More by Gavage
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Never Summer Ale from Boulder Beer / Wilderness Pub
82 out of 100 based on 546 ratings.