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Winter Ale - Telegraph Brewing Company

Winter AleWinter Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

64 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 64
Reviews: 45
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 12.23%


Brewed by:
Telegraph Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: JayTheFinn on 12-24-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 64 | Reviews: 45 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by JayTheFinn:
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JayTheFinn

California

4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another tasty brew from Telegraph of Santa Barbara, California. This is new ale has a great deal of spiced flavors, creating a good scent, a wonderful taste and a marvelous aftertaste that makes you long for more. Here's a snippet from the description on the bottle, "...Inspired by Mexican hot chocolate, Telegraph Winter Ale warms even teh coldest of nights with hints of cinnamon, allspice, and sweet ancho chilies...using generous amounts of chocolate and caramel malts". It's a sweet, spicey delight perfect for the holidays!

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2006 04:23:59 | More by JayTheFinn
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04-20-2013 14:03:05 | More by drgonzo2k2
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kojevergas

Texas

3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

750ml brown glass bottle with hood and wire cap over a cork and a well-concocted straightforward label served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high; I actually quite like Telegraph. 7.5% according to my bottle; Batch number 117.

Served cold, straight from the fridge, and allowed to warm over the course of consumption (the label advises to "enjoy it cool, rather than cold." Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Yields a satisfying pop upon removal of the cork. Adequate carbonation is anticipated.

A: Pours almost entirely foam - save for a finger's worth of actual body. The ambitious head is light khaki in colour, with good cream and thickness - and superb retention (7+ minutes). Overcarbonation is suspected. Body colour is a refined dark cherry-red; translucent and transparent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. I really like the vibrant body; it's quite appealing for a winter warmer. No lacing as the head recedes.

Sm: Not at all what I expected. Dark ripe fruit; plum, grapeskin, maybe juicy pear. Pleasant spice like cinnamon, allspice (when I look for it), and nutmeg. Majestic raisin - really evocative. A bit of fig roll. I look for chili notes and don't find any. Caramel. Chocolate malt. I'd venture to say the fruit notes are actually dominant; surprising given what the label suggests they're going for. I expected a chocolatey chili-heavy winter warmer; this is not that. Biscuit malt. Belgian candi sugar. Very interesting and appealing. I'm intrigued. A moderate strength aroma. A bit of biscuity yeast does come through. I don't detect any alcohol.

T: The candi sugar hits me first. I notice the fig and the fruit after that - they're right there on the climax, with prominent raisin character. Not as much grapeskin as the aroma suggested. Sure, there're sprinklings of spice - cinnamon, nutmeg, maybe allspice. I don't get any chili notes; maybe I just don't know what sweet anchos are. I guess I expected hot or spicy chili notes but this is cool and refreshing in a fruity way. Caramel comes through. Nowhere near as much chocolate as I expected; it's just there as a light cocoa powder. The biscuity malts and candi sugar take centre stage here. I don't know that this tastes anything remotely like Mexican hot chocolate, but I do know that I like it. Balanced and well built. It's a bit on the simple side, but there's some subtlety here that I really appreciate. A pleasant surprise, overall.

Mf: Smooth and wet. It's actually undercarbonated, contrary to its appearance. Carbonation may be the biggest issue with this beer; it even starts to come off just a touch thin and watery as it warms. Good body and presence on the palate. Complements the flavour profile quite well but I don't know that it feels custom-tailored specifically to its flavours. Well-executed any way you slice it.

Dr: You have to drink this one with an open mind; it's probably not what you'd expect. Hides its ABV well. A solid winter warmer from Telegraph - a brewery that is quickly rising in my mental ranking of Californian breweries. Still, its price point is its biggest failing. Very drinkable and approachable; this would make a great introductory beer for the style but I don't know that it's convential per se. None of the toasted malt emphasis you find in most winter warmers is present here. It's intriguing and probably best regarded as a Belgian dark with a twist. And a such, it's quite a success. Bravo, Telegraph. I'd get this again on-draught or aged.

B-

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2013 03:16:03 | More by kojevergas
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UCLABrewN84

California

3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Batch # 117.

Pours a hazy dark orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, chile, slight cocoa, and a variety of Winter spices. Taste is much the same with earthy spice and chile flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with some very earthy aromas and flavors.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2013 01:52:58 | More by UCLABrewN84
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hpthebull

California

4/5  rDev +6.4%

01-26-2013 15:46:55 | More by hpthebull
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rbrefbeerman

California

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

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TheMarkE

California

3.86/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

One of my favorite winter brews. Chocolate malt, allspice, and ancho pepper combine to create a complex and unique flavor.

Serving type: on-tap

01-09-2013 23:41:20 | More by TheMarkE
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Uncle_Jimmy

California

2.85/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle to a Thistle
Labeled Batch 117

Appearance- pours a reddish brown with 3 fingers of light tan foam. coarse bubbles that linger a bit. No lacing and for a beer with a cork, I expected it to be a little more chapagne-y. Not that this is bad !

Aroma- cinnamon, clove, chili, all spice, a little carmel butterscotch in there.

Taste- clove, cinnamon, allspice a hint of butterscotch. Virtually no heat or presence from the chilies. maybe it is being eclipsed by the hops? Hops Chilis vegetal all smears. No distinct hop character.

Mouthfeel- medium bodied, the label says it was based on mexican hot chocolate, which I understood to be almost like a hot chocolate pudding, than a beverage. Maybe it needs some cacao nibs, chocolate malt, lactose, oats even? I do appreciate the carbonation level in this though, and the alcohol warmth is hidden well.

Overall- This one is spicey, I could see it pairing well with game meats, pumpkin pie or other desserts.
It is a valiant effort for a holiday ale and it is festive as a re-gifted fruitcake! But If I wanted chilies, i would go to a Stone Smoked Chipotle Porter. If I wanted Cocoa, I would go to a Young's Chocolate Stout, If I wanted Spice I would go to your favorite Pumpkin ale (Pumking/punkin?). This one maybe tries to do too much... I know It's hard to please everyone in SB. The Townies, the college kids, girls in Ugg Boots, surfers, Hippies, Oprah and her cronies, but Just be true to telegraph it'l come ! Dig the wit beer

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2013 06:48:54 | More by Uncle_Jimmy
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khall

California

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12-26-2012 00:24:41 | More by khall
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OBeerMeGreatOne

California

4.33/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at The Jug Shop. 2011 Vintage.

Pours a deep plum, inch of head, nice lacing.

The smell has gingerbread, plum, spices galore and a nice caramel background.

The taste starts with dark fruit and nutmeg. This is closely followed by a heap of Christmas spices, cinnamon and clove being the most pronounced. Caramel and pine make an appearance as well. A little heavily carbonated for my taste.

Ages very very well. Not as much of a fan fresh though.

Serving type: on-tap

12-10-2012 02:10:24 | More by OBeerMeGreatOne
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TeamUgly

California

4/5  rDev +6.4%

12-09-2012 23:02:57 | More by TeamUgly
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jmarsh123

Indiana

1.9/5  rDev -49.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Pours deep brown with a big creamy tan head. Good retention. Poor lacing.

Cinnamon bomb on the nose along with a heavy dose of nutmeg. I can tell this may be challenging.

Absolute spice bomb. Tons of nutmeg reminding me of my least favorite pumpkin ales along with a heavy dose of cinnamon. Chocolate attempts to come through, but really it's hard to pick anything out over the abundance of spices.

Medium to light bodied a bit high on carbonation.

Blech. This beer is horrible. Nutmeg and cinnamon dominate everything and it's nearly undrinkable. My drain is going to be drunk tonight.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2012 21:02:42 | More by jmarsh123
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raulazzer

California

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

03-20-2012 18:10:27 | More by raulazzer
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TrojanWheels

California

4.5/5  rDev +19.7%

03-09-2012 04:08:12 | More by TrojanWheels
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Dope

Massachusetts

3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 95.

A: A nice deep brown pour with a very effervescent light brown head atop it. Retention is quite good, never fully fades away. Lacing is pretty decent too.

S: Tons of cinnamon and some pepper. Maybe even nutmeg? Toasted caramel. Maybe some chocolate? Hard to tell under all the stinging spices.

T: As in the nose, tons of cinnamon with a mild but noticeable chile pepper hit after that. Some nice caramel throughout, maybe a hint of cocoa in the aftertaste. Spices carry through and linger around for a while.

M: Quite effervescent, perhaps a bit too much. Tingly cinnamon and pepper spice.

O: Honestly not a bad concept but poorly balanced. The cinnamon is super overpowering, followed by the chile spice. There's almost nothing else to the beer. A strong chocolate character would achieve the desired effect I think. Lower carbonation would help too.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2012 04:26:43 | More by Dope
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TMoney2591

Illinois

3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

No intro here, just review: It pours a deep brown-ruby topped by about two fingers or so of cream froth. The nose comprises light cocoa, anise, cinnamon, clove, Belgian candi sugar, brown sugar, light plum, dark fruits, and a touch of black pepper way in the background. There's a decided BSDA feel about this smell, if you ask me. The taste holds notes of dark fruits, anise, light smoked pepper, clove, allspice, light cocoa, vanilla bean, light molasses, and a touch of roasted malts for good measure. It's all a bit much when it strikes the tongue, but somehow it misses being too much. Suffice it to say, a whole helluva lot is goin' on with this stuff... The body is a straight medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta dry finish. Overall, the parts are generally positive, but the sum is a mish-mash of overly-complex flavors that never really coalesces into anything truly good. Not sure if that makes sense or not... I will say that the pepper in the background does some nice things with the finish, keeping my tastebuds on their toes. Beyond that, though, I think the flavor din is just too loud for its own good.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2012 06:09:59 | More by TMoney2591
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RoamingGnome

Wisconsin

4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of 750 ml bottle into CBS snifter.

A) Deep brown, with a full finger of tan colored coffee house froth. The head settles to a dusting. Decent lacing. Quite inviting.

S) Yeast and chocolate malt. There is lots of spice. I pick up clove an some ginger. The aroma is more intense as this warms to room temperature.

T) Follows the nose pretty well... A nice combination of flavors, yeast, malt, a bit of chocolate, clove, ginger, and cinnamon. The finish is earthy and smoky. The aftertaste is really where you pick up the chili pepper, but it works really well.

M) Close to full bodied, with a moderate amount of carbonation. This is silky smooth, which I found surprising, based upon the spice in the aroma and taste. This has a really nice balance.

O) I don't drink a ton of winter warmers, but I've had my share. This offering is top notch, and I would gladly recommend.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 00:27:26 | More by RoamingGnome
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Brez07

Maine

3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed as part of the Blind Beer BIF #6. 750ml C&C bottle served in a snifter

A: Dark brown pour, looks like cola. Impressive 2 finger off white head that sticks around for what seems like forever (4)

S: Boom, clove explosion! All I get at first, but as it opens up, some banana mixes in. Loads of dark fruit and other spices, including ginger. Faint hint of booze (3)

T: Dark caramel malt, providing a small amont of roast. Some grapeskin. There is also a tiny amount of smokiness too. Clove has a large presence. A bit leathery (3.5)

M: Medium bodied. Good amount of carbonation at first, then becomes lighter over time (3.5)

D: This beer is... good. Not great, not bad. A little higher than normal. Hits where it should but doesn't shine (3.5)

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2012 13:31:52 | More by Brez07
Photo of Hex92
Hex92

Virginia

3.78/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had high hopes for this one, it came close, but it didn't quite hit the mark. Looks good, nice head, good color.
S- all spice
t- clean, little spicy, maybe a bit like pumpkin pie
M- lots of carbonation, otherwise good.

Interesting beer, but unfortunately it doesn't deliver on the initial impression.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2012 02:43:55 | More by Hex92
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Winter Ale from Telegraph Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.