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Santa's Private Reserve Ale - Rogue Ales

Not Rated.
Santa's Private Reserve AleSanta's Private Reserve Ale

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

1,957 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,957
Reviews: 1,142
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%
Wants: 44
Gots: 72 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Rogue Ales visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
10 Ingredients:
Carastan 30-37 & 13-17, Crystal 70-80 & Rogue Micro Barley Farm Dare™ & Risk™ Malts; Chinook & Rogue Farm Revolution & Freedom Hops; Free Range Coastal Water and Pacman Yeast.

65 IBU
73.1 AA
26.75º L

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-29-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,957 | Reviews: 1,142 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kaseydad
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber pour into a pint glass and a nice amber colored ale is produced with a nice foamy head with major staying power. Looks like someone plopped a beige whip cream spoonful on top.

Aroma consists of pine, oranges and malty goodness.

Taste smacks me with bitterness on the taste and not much sweetness, which is what I was expecting from the aroma. A long bitterness on the buds makes me salivate for another sip. There is some malt in there too but it is masked behind the over-saturation of bitterness...which kicks in well after the swallow.

Nice smooth, creamy and full mouthfeel.

Putting a bomber back is a piece of cake. Multiples are easily handled though the taste is probably steered toward hopheads. With all that is going on with this beer, it is hard to believe it's only 6.0%

Well done for an amber/red ale though I think this is more on the red ale side.

kaseydad, Dec 30, 2009
Photo of meeekyh
4.4/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Santa Beer! A longtime favorite winter seasonal of mine (a few years now) and the only one known by name to my kids... read in what you must.

It's rusty-transparent, a bit heady, and hoppy in such a nice way. Warm and smooth, not too toasty but the nose is subdued as opposed to many of the winter seasonals, and It achieves a spiciness without the addition of spices like few other beers. Not to mention run-on sentences.

The feel is round and the hops give it a nice bite. Its well carbonated too, something to enjoy in itself.

Merry Christmas to me! And to you and yours. Thank you Rouge.

meeekyh, Dec 30, 2009
Photo of yesferro
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Saw this at K's tobacco and beer in Saltillo MS and just had to get it, a little steep pricetag of $11.59 but o well, never seen this before so we gave it a shot. We were on our way to a christmas meal and decided to share some there.

Looks a nice nutty brown with maybe a bit of red in it, a pretty beer. Smelled familiar, maybe it's because I try to keep some st Rogue around at all times. Hoppy and carmelly, promising!
Tastes hoppy, with a roasted hint to it. I like this a good bit but I will not pay that much for it again. The st Rogue is $4 cheaper and too simular to it to pass up. High drinkability, if you like hops!

yesferro, Dec 29, 2009
Photo of brauseboof
3.4/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A thick, cream colored head topped off the dark opaque, copper colored ale, when poured into my tumbler.
Detected a nice yeasty smell. It tasted of roasted coffee with a subtle hint of pithy grapefruit.
A bit watery for me, but was nicely carbonated.
Easy to drink, but not the most exciting.

brauseboof, Dec 29, 2009
Photo of Lunch
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 22oz. bottle purchased at North Charles Fine Wine & Spirits in Baltimore, Maryland (12/26/09) into my new Rogue Santa's Private Reserve goblet at the appropriate temperature.

A: Pours a rather clear chestnut brown with an amber hue with bubbly carbonation and a fairly creamy three finger white head with excellent retention.

S: Nice earthy hops along with a slight caramel malt. Not the most overpowering aroma, but good for the style

T: The earthy hops continue with a definite hint of spruce and pine. The malt backbone consists of some bready and caramel layers. Tones of citrus and winter spice are found as well.

M: Medium-bodied with clean and crisp carbonation.

D: Extremely drinkable and no hint at all of the 6% abv especially during the winter months.

Overall this is a very well done amber with a Christmas/winter twist. One of my favorites from Rogue and certainly an easy drinker. Recommended.

Lunch, Dec 28, 2009
Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark mahogany in color with an beige/ash colored head and killer lacing found on the pint glass.

S: Not too much going on in that dept. but some nice hits of malt and earthy tones do give way. Mediocre at best.

T: This is the star of the show. Great hop presence that lingers forever among the notes of malt, and to steal a word from the bottle label, "sprucy" overtures.

M: Medium body, great carbonation action, ABV a factor: nope, stickability factor is well received, as a plus.

D: This is a must pickup if your into holiday beers. Well rounded flavors without being too over-the-top as some breweries can go sometimes with these things. I definitely recommend, and for myself will be purchasing again when the season is upon us in future's time.

BuffaloTapHugger, Dec 28, 2009
Photo of jdense
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle from John's Marketplace PDX poured into Dead Guy Shaker glass 12/27/09.

Amber brew, big ass white head, slow dissipation, above average lacing. Grassy hops in the nose, a bit of citrus, and sweet malts. The taste is nicely balanced, not too hoppy, and not much of a bitter finish. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth, good carbonation. Pretty drinkable. Tasty, but I liked the Mogul Madness a bit better, more assertive hop-wise IMO.

jdense, Dec 28, 2009
Photo of mtnbikerpa
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into my glass. About 2 inches or foamy head. Head faded after a few minutes leaving sudsy lacing on my glass. Strong hoppy smell. Hops seem to be piney, citrus in nature. The flavor has some bready malts flavors to go along with the hops. A nice winter warmer ale but no real spices to speak of. Very drinkable booze seem well balanced.

mtnbikerpa, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of mulder1010
4.33/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650 ML poured into a tulip glass

A-- poured a reddish copper color, tan color head that quickly disappeared and became a film. Very small bubbles on the side of the glass. Not real carbonated and no real lacing.

S-- Balance of malt and pine. A little sweet smell as well.

T-- Pine at first then followed by the malt. Good balance between the 2. Becomes more floral as it gets warmer

M-- Finishes dry and leaves a bit of a pucker. Becomes more bold and pinier as it gets warmer. Deceptively heavy because of the hops and the malt. If it wanted to be an IPA it could be. Hops eventually take over the drink and move the malt aside. not real carbonated at all.

D-- For a seasonal it is different. It is more sessionable than others because of the ABV, 6%, and that this is not a spice driven like a lot of others and that it is not a high ABV beer. Can have 2 or 3 of these in a sitting and still function and not be totally weighed down. Still gives the warming effect that the high ABV beers give but because it is so complex. Was never one of my favorites because it was a hoppy seasonal and I like the spiced stuff. I will have to incorporate this more into my winter seasonal favorites because it is different and it is very well done.

mulder1010, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of xmorgan
4.35/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice Head on the pour from the bottle.

Darkish Brown.

Hop presence is there, it is hoppy, and nicely balanced.

This beer, like most in this class, gets better as it gets warmer.

it is easy to drink, slowly and it is not to aggressive of a beer.

I would enjoy this again once or twice this season, but I would not drink it much after the new year.

I do look forward to having it next year.

xmorgan, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of HeroJH
4.47/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A wonderful holiday tradition. I now always pick up one of this to have on Christmas Day.

A - Huge foamy soft head with lacing. Dark chestnut brown in the glass.

S - Nice aroma of hops most notably. Background of some roastyness.

T - Nice hop flavor. Full range, seems dry hopped perhaps as it's quite flowery and fresh tasting. Some slight roastyness in the body. A more hoppy beer, but with some body and other flavors that emerge as it warms.

M - soft carb, dry, refreshing

D - Supreme. So easy to drink. Lovely hop balance with some other things going on, but nothing overwhelming and certainly not a heavy beer that you might expect from a wintertime seasonal.

HeroJH, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of jkrich
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a shaker. The ale was a deep, slight cloudy deep reddish brown with an off-white head.

This one smelled of sweet caramel and faint piney hops.

The taste was quite similar to the aroma: very balanced. The initial piney hop bitterness is quickly softened by a nice malty, faintly roasty, flavor.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation: a somewhat thick mouthfeel that always remains refreshing. There is a lingering, pleasant hop bitterness that coats the mouth.

This is a good, sessionable ale for the Christmas holiday. Instead of the typically high ABV and exotically spiced ales, you can enjoy a few of these in the evening.

jkrich, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of parkeak0
4.35/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a very tasty seasonal offering from Rogue. A great take - if somewhat unconventionally hoppy - on an amber ale. Lots of roasty, biscuity malts with a TON of bitter, resiny hops - pine dominates the profile. A hint of spice (which I couldn't put my finger on) in the background.

Glad I grabbed a bottle of this. I will definitely be picking up a sixer or two before too long.

parkeak0, Dec 26, 2009
Photo of yesyouam
4.45/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rogue Santa's Private Reserve is a crystal clear copper ale topped with a lumpy, yellowish foam that fades to a film and leaves fluff all over the glass. It smells like a Christmas tree with lots of fresh, resiny pine. It's medium bodied, smooth and fluffy. he dry finish leaves the mouth a little bit sticky. It tastes similar to the aroma. It's quite hoppy with notes of pine and resin. Grapefruit really surfaces in the aftertaste. his is an excellent example of what I'd call a red ale.

yesyouam, Dec 26, 2009
Photo of vkv822
4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle out of Christmas stocking, into pint glass.

Is an amber red with a foamy light tan, and slightly golden head with strong retention. The aroma is a coppery, roasty malt scent with some spicy hops. The flavor is hoppy and toasted malty accompanied by hints of spruce and spice.The mouth feel is very balanced and enjoyable with a medium body and long finish. It is a very drinkable brew, I would definitely pick up a couple more if given the chance.

vkv822, Dec 26, 2009
Photo of FickleBeast
4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours clear amber with one finger of sticky off white foam that dissipates slowly. Aroma is piney hops.

This beer is bitter enough to be an IPA, the hop flavor is welcome and abundant. Piney hop flavors balanced by a substantial malt bill to create a very enjoyable brew.

Mouthfeel is sticky and sweet. A very finely crafted beer - I would buy this again.

FickleBeast, Dec 26, 2009
Photo of guinness310
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

served into a pint glass...

A: a light reddish almost dark-orange body sits atop of an off-white bubly head that dessipates fairly quickly.

S: a citrusy sweet and malty scent is warm and ivinting on the nose. pine is also present.

T: medium bodided, malty and alcohol are extremely evident in the brew. patchy lacing. Pine and caramel flavours are up front while the bitterness hop aftertaste is great on the palate on the way down.

M&D: mild carbonation makes this a dinkable beer while the combobation of the malt and the hops give it a distinct flavour... A good beer.

guinness310, Dec 25, 2009
Photo of Pinto21
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: copper/amber color with ok head, maybe 1f. nice lacing though

S: piney and bit of citrus, with some medium malts, bit more than just caramel or munich but not too much.

T: Hops up front. pine mostly. then goes to the bitter of hops and ends with some biscuity malts. not too sweet like caramel but more roasty/grainy. Bitterness lingers for a while.

M/D: good to moderate. fairly dry finish. good amber

Overall a good Amber. Nothing over the top or spectacular but very good and solid. Still Troegs Hopback have this beat.

Pinto21, Dec 25, 2009
Photo of puboflyons
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle - 2009 batch. Sampled on December 24, 2009. The pour is a mahogany brown tone with nice clarity and little head. Floral hops and pine are the main aromas along with some caramel sweetness. The mouthfeel is around medium. The taste is overwhelmed with bitter hops and less in the way of caramel sweetness. It reminds me more of an IPA. AT least the pine aroma drops a hint of Christmas into the mix.

puboflyons, Dec 24, 2009
Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Santa's Private Reserve Ale poured deep orange copper with a miniscule tan head. It did, however, leave a good amount of sticky lace.

The smell and taste were earthy, with notes of pine and wet grass. There was a hint of citrus rind, but primarily this has funk. The feel was bready and thick and maybe because I like funk, it was a pleasure to drink.

The only thing "holiday" about Santa's Private Reserve Ale is the beautiful orange . Otherwise, it's like many other year-round earthy ales. It's flavorful, aggressive, and anything but bland.

MetalHopHead6, Dec 24, 2009
Photo of ADZA
4.13/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a deep copper hue with nice carbonation that produces a two finger head that quickly resides to a nice ring of lacing around the top of the glass,the aroma is very hoppy with a stonefruit,boiled candy smell to it just from the aroma you can tell this is a nice display of hops and a few of them,it has a nice weighty mouthfeel to it with tastes of stonefruit dipped in alcohol,caramel candy and also a touch of passionfruit and this beer finishes nice and bitter but its just bitter enough to make you want to have another sip,this is definately a beer i will return to as long as my bottleshop still has some left.

ADZA, Dec 22, 2009
Photo of ElGrecoVerde
3.63/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I bought this one for two reasons. 1: Rogue rarely disappoints. 2: I liked the bottle. Sometimes it's okay to judge a beer by its cover.

Cool looking copper color with a pretty solid head. The smell definitely indicates it's a hoppy beer.

All around good flavor, but I can't help feeling that Santa held back a bit here. There's enough bitterness to call it a hoppy beer, but I kept waiting for it to go over the top. C'mon Santa, turn that amp up to 11.

Good creamy feel and an enjoyable holiday beer.

ElGrecoVerde, Dec 22, 2009
Photo of Vengeance526
4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium amber color with a half finger off-white head that immediately settles down and leaves light lacing.

Aroma shows off a lot of pine and citrus upfront.

Taste again reveals a nice hop presence. Very floral throughout with notes of lemon, grapefruit and pine also present. A touch of caramel comes in towards the end.

Medium body and medium carbonation. This turned out to be quite enjoyable. Not overly hoppy, just an almost perfect amount of hops to make this great as possible without hitting the extreme side. Easy to drink, I would have this again.

Vengeance526, Dec 22, 2009
Photo of hooliganlife
4.38/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pour is deep ruby copper with a light creamy frothy head. nice retention.

big citrus, sweet grapefruit and powerful flowers. big sweet candied malts

very floral, like intense flower like kick that has a pine bitterness right behind it. light grapefruit and tangerine bitterness at the finish. malts are sweet but overpowered by the hops.

thick as hell and chewy

this is very easy to drink, not over the top but just enough hops. i think this years seems to be a bit more tame than years past, or i am getting too used to hops. i have always loved this release and this years is just perfect.

hooliganlife, Dec 19, 2009
Photo of isualum12
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Grabbed this over at the Boise Coop.

Looks amber in color. Came through with cream in flavor which I loved.

Citrus flavors with just enough malt to follow up.

Not to thick but just enough for my tastes.

Nice drinkability. Served it up at a beer tasting event at my house. We server up 8 winter beers to 12 folks and they ranked this beer 3rd on the list. It was great.

Serving: bottle

isualum12, Dec 17, 2009
Santa's Private Reserve Ale from Rogue Ales
85 out of 100 based on 1,957 ratings.