Bad Santa - Pelican Pub & Brewery

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Bad SantaBad Santa

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BA SCORE
87
very good

33 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 33
Hads: 80
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 8.42%
Wants: 3
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pelican Pub & Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ccrida on 01-03-2008

17.0degree Plato
Alcohol: 6.7% by volume
Bitterness: 65 IBU
Color: 60 SRM
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 33 | Hads: 80
Photo of Jeffreysan
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color with two fingers of oatmeal-colored head that quickly dissolved away into a thick lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Rich, earthy, aromas of bready toasted malt, imparting notes of freshly toasted pumpernickel bread, as well as aromas of brown sugar, licorice, clove and quite a lot of assertive, floral, piney, grassy, resin-like, hops.

Taste: Nice flavors of bready, toasted malt up front, followed by lots of brown-sugar and caramel-like sweetness, some spices of clove, star anise, and a touch of black pepper, finished with quite a bit of assertive, floral, piney, grassy, resin-like, hops. Maybe too much hops for my liking.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and quite smooth as there is very little in the way of carbonation. With an ABV of 6.7%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is a good beer, but not a great one, at least to my palate. I like the flavors of the bready, toasted malt, the sweetness and the spices, but to me the beer is too far out of balance in favor of hops. The floral, piney, grassy, resin-like, hops are way too assertive to my tastes, but I’m certain that hop-heads will love this beer. (1,281 characters)

Photo of jellikit
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle.
Appearance: dark brown with light ruby highlights. Clear when held to light. Fizzy. Thick foamy head.
Smell: slightly sweet malts. Light Grassy hops.
Taste: black patent and pine tar hops. Bitterness from burnt malts.
Mouthfeel: medium carbonation. Medium body. Dry.
Overall: although I'm not a huge fan of the style, this is a decent beer. Not sure if I can review it fairly as I don't enjoy black patent. (427 characters)

Photo of Harvest06
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A:The label is bad ass. Dark brown with reddish hue with an off white head. Nice lacing.
S: Subtle balance of pleasant malts and subtle spicy/earthy hops. The malts are the feature.
T: Front has sweet creamy malty flavors of a stout: chocolate, coffee, licorice, slight smokey roastiness with the creaminess of an oatmeal stout. Earthy spicy hops mingle with the stout like characteristics in the middle. Bittersweet very dry finish.
M: Medium mouth feel. Good carbonation (medium to high) with a nice creamy texture.
P: This dark CDA is composed of lower gravity stout like dark ale with spicy earthy bitter hops of an English IPA. The stout like characteristics dominate but the hops adds a nice touch. Along the lines of Storm King but with a dryer finish and a lighter body. Wish it was year round. Loving the new 6 packs format. My favorite black IPA to date. Wish it was year round. (889 characters)

Photo of hreb
3.59/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle promises Winter Warmer with its evil looking Pelican on the label, but the caption promises CDA (American Black Ale on BeerAdvocate). Served in a chalice, beer pours dark reddish brown in color with a thick, dark head. Very little aroma to speak of, which would not be a good start if we are to expect a CDA. Flavor is however very much like a CDA: spicy (there's your Winter piece) hop bitterness accompanied by a relatively thin body that just so happens to be dark in color. Drinkable and enjoyable, but as others have said, not a great example of the style. (578 characters)

Photo of ryannosaurus
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bomber poured to tulip.

Pours black-brown with a big tan head

Aroma has a piney-citrus hop note, but brown sugar and toast

Taste is hop forward with a nice slug of bitterness... coffee, roasted malt, brown sugar

Mouthfeel is pleasantly thick

Overall a damn tasty christmas surprise hop bomb. Plenty of malt complexity and a full on blitz of bittering, flavor and aroma hops (386 characters)

Photo of Spikester
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Black with three fingers of tan head that lasts about 15 minutes leaving lots of lacing behind. Flashlight shined from the backside reveal a ruby red color. Smell is brown bread crusts and herbal hops. Taste begins with the dark roasted malt character which is almost sweet then the herbal hop bitterness chimes in and never lets up. Mouthfeel is light to medium with perfect carbonation. Long bittersweet dry finish. Overall a fine beer from a style I have rated but don't typically swoon over. If you like really dark ales and want big flavor give this a try. This brewery does a fine job with all the beers I have tried from them. (633 characters)

Photo of vkv822
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz bomber into a tulip glass.

Black, with a foamy, tan head, spotty lacing.

Citric, lightly resiny hops with a roasty, malty backbone.

Medium body, medium carbonation.

A well done Black Ale, with a pleasant balance between the hops and malts. A great beer for a windy, rainy night on the Oregon Coast. (307 characters)

Photo of snaotheus
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014-12-20
22oz bottle served in a big snifter. 11.07.2014 T14:15 is printed on the label.

Pours black with a pretty big light brown head that fades pretty quickly to a small light brown head and some moderate lacing. Smell is mildly roasty, moderately hoppy. Nondescript, but good.

Taste is very roasty and pretty darn hoppy. This really reminds me of an overhopped porter, in a good way. A little licorice in addition to the coffee and roast.

Mouthfeel is light, dry, a little gritty. Overall, pretty good beer! (516 characters)

Photo of plakers
3.72/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Labeled as a Cascadian Dark Ale, Bad Santa pours into a nice creamy tan head.
The smells are very much porter or stout, the hop flavor maybe not as strong as I expected.
Good solid, dark malty taste, residual bitterness but pleasant earthy finish. Overall a good beer, just not a black IPA to me, more like a well balanced hopped porter. (337 characters)

Photo of ssteakley
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is a fine dark ale, chocolate/ coffee start to finish mild caramel malts, A little thin on The body overall but greAt for a cold Seattle night. GreAt beer to take go a Dark Ale party. I can or IPA's and just bring home a Dark Ale occasionally so try it and see what you think . (282 characters)

Photo of superspak
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 9/30/2013. Pours nearly pitch black color with a 2 finger dense tan head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of grapefruit, tangerine, orange zest, lemon zest, floral, grass, light pine, roasted malt, cocoa, toast, light coffee, light char, and floral earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of hop notes with a fair amount of roasted malt balance; and decent strength. Taste of grapefruit, tangerine, orange zest, lemon zest, floral, grass, roasted malt, cocoa, toast, coffee, light char, light pine, and floral earthiness. Fair amount of floral/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, orange/lemon zest, floral, grass, light pine, roast, cocoa, toast, light coffee, light char, and floral earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of citrus hop flavors with moderate roasted malt balance; with a good malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, crisp, and moderately sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice Black IPA. Flavors seemed to lean towards a standard American IPA overall, but there was still a fair amount of roasted flavor going on. Very smooth and crisp to drink; and a very enjoyable offering. (1,500 characters)

Photo of beertunes
3.39/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Dumb-assed 22oz format bottle. Bottled on date of 9/30/13. Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured an almost solid black color, just some bare translucence at the edges, with over an inch of tan head that had moderate retention and very light lacing.

The aroma was low on malt, lightly roasty, and had a very subdued hop presence. A very mild version of the style. The roast was a bit more apparent at the back of the palate, and the hops (a bit of citrus and some pine) were a touch brighter, but again, not as bold as most examples.

The body was thinner than most, and other than the semi-lingering roast, had a clean, dry finish. Drinkability was pretty good, I'm not a fan of this style, and I managed to knock off the 22 fairly quickly. Overall, a solid, decent example. Not one that will blow you away, but one that's probably worth a shot if you see it. (854 characters)

Photo of GilGarp
4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber served cold into a pint glass.

Bad Santa is a dark brown colored ale with good clarity and huge long-lasting head. It leaves some really nice lacing behind as it settles.

Aroma is not as hoppy as expected but it was bottled in late October so that doesn't help in that respect. It has a nice roasted malt and earthy hop aroma.

Flavor is bold and bitter but not over the top. It's definately a dark IPA rather than an imperial anything. The fuggles are earthy and spicy which pairs well with the roasted malts and the coffee flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated.

Overall and excellent version of the style. Pelican only makes high quality beers and this is no exception. (701 characters)

Photo of drpimento
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Very nicely done beer! Poured at a good temperature with a huge, foamy, frothy, billowy, tan head that lasts all the way down and some lace. Color is a clear, dark mahoganey with an enormous amount of bubble trails. Aroma is at first subdued and then it's hop, roast, malt, spice, fruit. Flavor's like nose, very slight sweet, plenty bitter and good tang that's not out of place. Body/carbonation are perfect. Finish is like flavor, very long, boozy, yet easy drinking. Bad Santa is very good beer. (498 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A; Poured a dark brown with a big dirty white cap which leavessome nice bubbles, lacing clingign to the sides of the glass

S: Nice floral and piney note with a good dose of chocolate and coffee

T: Initial pine needles hits the taste buds followed by a quick dose of dark brown sugar and chocolate that isn't overly dominant on the palette. Bitterness shines back through in the finish with a little grapefruit and cocoa left in the back of the throat. As it warms, me coffee appears as does some spicinss, a touch of caramel.

M: Medium carbonation a medium body. Great hop bitterness, a bit chewy, a touch creamy.

O: Really enjoyed ths CDA. (644 characters)

Photo of philbertk
4.19/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. Bottle purchased for $5.50 + tax @ Fremont, Seattle PCC. Big dense lasting lacy tan 1 inch head. Opaque dark black color without obsidian red edges. No sediment. Aromatic floral slightly herbal minimally toasted hop front. Very smooth somewhat creamy toasted hint mildly sweet balanced lightly dark malt flavored IPA body. Lingering herbal mild bitter smooth balanced clean hop spice end. Very smooth and tasty. (4.25 / 5.0). (432 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a very dark mahogany brown with a big three finger light tan head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of sweet and toasted malt, piney hops; slightly earthy. Flavor of citrus hops, citrus rind, toasted malt, nicely balanced. Finishes with long lasting citrus hops. Medium bodied with some creaminess. The flavors are so well melded that no one flavor dominates the taste. One of the best integrated black ales I've had. Nicely done. (479 characters)

Photo of Murrhey
2.74/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Reviewed live.

A- Three finger cream colored head, long retention. Clingy lacing. Mahogany color with high clarity. Nice looking beer.

S- Roast malts, chocolate and toffee. Piney and earthy hops.

T- Bitter hops, creamy flavors and roast malts. Not well developed.

M- Smooth feel. Dry linger.

O- Not great. I was hoping for more, but then again I am not a fan of the style. (421 characters)

Photo of flagmantho
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: extremely dark brown with rosy tints throughout. Head is two thick fingers of creamy tan foam which demonstrate serious retention. Good stuff.

Smell: sweet, roasty malt aroma with a big helping of rather vegetal-smelling hops. There's also a fair dose of citrus in the mix. Altogether, not bad, but could be cleaner.

Taste: pretty bitter flavor right off the bat with big citrusy and earthy hop flavor. The vegetal quality is there, but is less pronounced than in the aroma. Malt is sweetish and a little bit caramelly; roasty character is limited in the flavor. Not bad; a good example of the style.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good level of carbonation and a nice creaminess. I like it.

Overall: a decent American black ale, although I feel like the harsh bitterness of the flavor negatively impacts drinkability. A decent beer. (892 characters)

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.82/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Buckeyeboy provided this at a recent tasting... Thanks Jeremy... this one was waaay off my radar. Pours a pretty standard dark brown... decent looking tan head drops pretty quickly leaving some spotty lace.

Nose shows more piney hops than anything else.. good hops with some background roast and slight coffee notes.

Flavor mirrors the nose but a little bit more roasty elements emerge... some slight sweetness brings the hops and the malts forward... the finish drops pretty quickly... not quite hoppy enough to meet my expectations...

Good.. but not really multidimensional as I would hope for. A bit of a one trick pony.

3.5/4/4/3.5/3.5

Thanks Jeremy... appreciated. (675 characters)

Photo of RickS95
3.56/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a sexy looking beer. It's not completely pitch black, but it's very close. Even up to a light you can barely see anything other than night. The head is a finger thick of offbrown foamy bubbles, both large and small. As the middle falls out of the head, there is a gentle lacing left behind.

Early on, it's all roasty malt scents. As the beer warms, the strange smells of the Fuggles hops shine through. Very Earthy, vegetal. Not exactly my liking, but a strong scent.

Has a roasty, charcoal like taste with an Earthy flowery finish.

You don't notice it's a pale ale of any type til the bitter finish. It's actually pretty bitter from start to finish, but it's definitely kicked up a notch in the swallow. There is bitterness from the roasted items followed by a wave of even more bitterness from the hops.

I try to be open about every beer I try, but I just haven't developed a tongue for black IPAs. There's something about each of them that just doesn't work for me and this is no exception. It's not that it's a bad beer, just not what I'm looking for. (1,069 characters)

Photo of velosuds
3.61/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 22 oz. bomber into a clear pint glass. No freshness dating apparent. Winter seasonal per Pelican's website, so should be fresh.

A-pours a dark brown, almost black hue. Massive three finger head with strong retention and decent lacing.

S-Aroma is malt dominant; roasty and grainy. Hops, Fuggles in particular, are a peculiar choice for what is an American Northwest ale style - Cascadian Dark Ale per the brewer. Fuggles tend to lend a woodsy aroma, which in this case is lost against the roasted and toasted malts.

T-Roasted, almost smoky character more reminiscent of the porter and stout styles is the prominent flavor profile. There is sufficient bitterness for the style, but like the aroma, the hops don't add much flavor.

M-Medium dry body is very smooth and well balanced. Carbonation level is very good.

O-Overall this is lackluster beer and not one of their finer offerings. (895 characters)

Photo of jdense
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle from New Seasons SE Division PDX, shared as part of Twelve beers of Christmas tasting, 12.18.11.

Half finger dark brown head, slow dissipation with a bit of lacing retained over dark brown almost black opaque body. Woody nose from the Fuggles, not much roast aroma. Taste is dominated by caramel malt, some cocoa nib notes, a wee bit of coffee but very little if any roasted malt, and funky woody notes with some residual sweetness on the back end, nicely balanced. Mouthfeel is medium, dry finish. This is certainly an interesting variant on CDA theme, the use of the Fuggles gave this a unique aroma and taste profile, but IMO needed a more aggressive PNW hop. (677 characters)

Photo of tsauce2
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

P: 22 fl oz bottle poured in to 6 oz taster tulip

A: SRM is black. Semi-translucent. Head is light tan, 1 in, dissipates to 1 cm. Medium carbonation. Medium lacing.

S: Rich dark malt is light up front, then huge fuggle hops hit the pallet.

T: Hop forward, light citrus notes, but quickly followed by dark malt. Aftertaste is slightly bittered malt and smooth hops.

M: Medium/light body. Big hops stimulate the palate, malt adds some body, and then hops come back in with a fair amount of bitterness, which is present but not overwhelming. Finishes slightly wet.

O: I usually do not like Black IPA's, which this ale most definitely is, but the Bad Santa was very enjoyable. Fantastic hop nose, nice combination of malt and hop presence. I would drink this again were it available in my market. (797 characters)

Photo of draheim
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a deep mahogany cola brown with a thick, rich, almost mocha head, nice sticky lacing.

Aroma is sweet malt, piney hops, and some nice spiciness. Hints of juniper and evergreen.

Taste is a good balance of roasty, chocolatey malt and lots of bright, bitter hops. An IPA porter? Nice smooth, full mouthfeel.

This could easily have been classified as a winter warmer but this compares well with the few Cascadian dark ales I've had so far. Nice wintry spiciness w/ ample malt, delicious on a cold December eve. (547 characters)

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Bad Santa from Pelican Pub & Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.