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Shipyard Prelude Special Ale - Shipyard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Shipyard Prelude Special AleShipyard Prelude Special Ale

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

473 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 473
Reviews: 278
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%
Wants: 9
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co. visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: taez555 on 02-27-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 473 | Reviews: 278 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by beerad666:
Photo of beerad666
beerad666

Illinois

3.95/5  rDev +5.1%

It pours out a darker amber / light brown color with a tan creamy head. The aroma is sweet with butterscotch, caramel and molasses, hitting you up front with some winter spices. The taste is much milder and malty then you expect. There is a nice hint of alcohol to complement the spices and the hops come through in the finish with some bitterness to balance it all out. This is a hearty beer in your mouth and could work excellent with some food. Its also very session-able, it goes down easy and isn't overly spiced. It comes in with an ABV of 6.8% which makes it good for a winter day or evening of drinking with friends. Shipyard did a great job with this winter warmer.

01-09-2010 04:09:35 | More by beerad666
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +6.4%

Poured a roasted nut brown with a tinge of burnt orange,a fliffy off white head atop.A nice mix of roasted nuts,vanilla,cinnamon,and fruitiness in the nose,well rounded malt complexity.Roasty and even a little raw earthy on the palate,very light sweetness with some vanilla and cinnamon-like qualities in the back end.I tried this a few years back and I don't recall liking it as much as I do now,its a solid well rounded winter warmer that is not overly spiced and/or sweet.

12-31-2011 23:08:05 | More by oberon
Photo of elinash
elinash

New York

3.43/5  rDev -8.8%

It pours a translucent amber with a few dispersed soapy bubbles hanging out for a while.
The aroma is nutty, husky, and I think I detect a little plastic, though it might be too cold.
Mouthfeel is soft and pillowy, but it starts out a little spritzy like the first sip of a soda.
Taste is initially bitter and tart. That fades for a second allowing some fruit in, but hops kick in and it finishes pretty hoppy for a winter warmer.
I liked a few others this season above Prelude, but I had heard good things about years past, so I will try it again next year, or see how it is with a little age.

01-20-2008 01:07:10 | More by elinash
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens

Maine

4.45/5  rDev +18.4%

Dark reddish-brown color with a good head. A pleasant spicy smell to it, in contrast to their Pumpkinhead. It has a hoppy-spicy-chocolate flavor, which is very appealing. A good feel in my mouth. An excellent seasonal beer.

I also didn't know it was 7.5% ABV until a local pub told me I had to have a smaller serving because of the alcohol content. Tou'd never tell by it's taste.

12-18-2005 16:29:13 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of csmartin6
csmartin6

New York

3/5  rDev -20.2%

03-08-2013 21:47:08 | More by csmartin6
Photo of Doomcifer
Doomcifer

Rhode Island

3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

08-10-2014 18:56:37 | More by Doomcifer
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

4.4/5  rDev +17%

Presentation: 12oz brown long neck twist off with a best enjoyed before date clearly marked.

Appearance: Clear and bright dark garnet colour with a cake like head that floats on top and leaves lace all over.

Smell: Big aroma of butterscotch ... on the sweet side with hints of floral hop. There is even a touch of chocolate in the nose ... smells like ice cream drowning in butterscotch and a little hot fudge.

Taste: Silky smooth with a buttery malty mouth feel. Full bodied and rich in flavour with a biscuity and caramel malt sweetness ... there is even a hint of chocolate more towards the finish. Sizeable fresh juicy fruit falvour in the middle amonst the esters. Just enough hops to cut into the big malt character ... hop seem to linger for a bit. Residual sugar in the end with a leaf like hop flavour on the side and remnants of the buttery diacetyl.

Notes: Lots of great winter ales to come from the NE ... this one surely sits somewhere on the best of the best list.

05-08-2002 04:03:11 | More by Jason
Photo of mtbski75
mtbski75

Maine

4.5/5  rDev +19.7%

10-20-2012 19:43:30 | More by mtbski75
Photo of tigg924
tigg924

Massachusetts

3.6/5  rDev -4.3%

Appearance: 1 inch head, clear, leather brown in color, moderate carbonation

Smell: toasted malt, alcohol, and wood

Taste: toasted malt, hops, and finished oak

Mouthfeel: smooth, light bodied, slightly bitter

Drinkability: One of Shipyard's better beers. I get a huge dose of finished oak. I could have two of these.

12-01-2009 16:52:44 | More by tigg924
Photo of uconnalum2
uconnalum2

Connecticut

3.53/5  rDev -6.1%

Pours a perfectly clear, dark reddish-brown with a big tan head. Aroma is a little fruity with a hint of alcohol. The taste becomes softer and more rounded as it warms. Its slightly sweet at first but then turns bitter with a little alcoholic finish. The alcohol provides a nice warming effect. Mouthfeel is quite smooth. Drinkability is good but I wouldn't go beyond a couple of these. Overall, a nice beer to have on a cold winter night.

02-10-2007 05:02:00 | More by uconnalum2
Photo of Cavanaghty
Cavanaghty

Maine

3.61/5  rDev -4%

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Dark brown with a thin beige head. No lacing on the glass.

Smell: Alcohol, Malts, nutty.

Mouthfeel/Taste: A little rough, medium bodied. Taste nutty with malts and strong alcohol.

Overall: This is an ok brew. Good for warming up on a cold snowy day.

12-15-2013 22:36:58 | More by Cavanaghty
Photo of PressFastF0rward
PressFastF0rward

Maine

3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

06-27-2014 20:27:45 | More by PressFastF0rward
Photo of far333
far333

Connecticut

3.4/5  rDev -9.6%

Dark tea color, a thin beige head rises up slightly and disappears quickly. Aroma is rich malt, a little sweet, some fruit, cinnamon and cotton candy. Mouthfeel is fairly smooth, a little tingly, perhaps a tad overcarbonated. Flavor is initially pungent with alcohol overpowering other flavors, a little stringent, but malt and plum emerge, as do sharp cinnamon and orange peel. Gets richer as it warms, but a little sweet, sort of syrupy and chewy. Spruce tips emerge, as do clove and frankensense, rounding out the holiday flavors.

12-23-2004 01:30:17 | More by far333
Photo of yankeeheel
yankeeheel

Maine

3.03/5  rDev -19.4%

Pours a clear brown with a springy café colored head. Smells very weakly of nutty malt.

The taste is somewhat unremarkable. A little bit of caramel malt with some of that ever-repetitive Shipyard diacetyl. Not a unique brew by any stretch. The malts give way to a weak hop finish. I’m just a little bit disappointed that this tastes like a lot of other Shipyard beers.

12-01-2003 01:15:53 | More by yankeeheel
Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
BurgeoningBrewhead

Pennsylvania

3.41/5  rDev -9.3%

Poured from twist-off bottle into becker pint glass. Pours deep garnet red with a thin cap of loose foam that fades quickly to a loose rim of bubbles, leaving some lacing on the glass. Smells like...vinegar? Upon a second examination as it warms I can tell that that smell is more butterscotch. Taste is strong sweet malts, surprisingly a bit boozy for the relatively low % (at least compared to other "stronger" beers), and a bit of hop bitterness at the end coupled with leftover spiciness. Not sure if I enjoy this style, but it'd definitely be more enjoyable on a cold winter night (instead of the middle of June).

06-09-2013 02:16:05 | More by BurgeoningBrewhead
Photo of ThreeDimesDown
ThreeDimesDown

Connecticut

3.58/5  rDev -4.8%

Pours a deep rust color with an off-white head that lingers and leaves behind some thin lacing.

Aromas of caramel malts, light malts, spices (nutmeg, and ginger), candied sugar and a hint of pine freshness.

The taste has a solid backbone of malt character (caramel, crystal, roasted) with nice fruit flavors ranging from pear to raisin to dark plum. There is a candy-sweetness that is present but not overbearing. Bittering hops are present in the finish.

Mouthfeel is quite nice: well carbonated, med to full, slightly creamy and sticky with a bit of a dry finish. ABV % is present throughout, slightly in the nose and more pronounced in the taste.

12-01-2010 22:26:30 | More by ThreeDimesDown
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

3.55/5  rDev -5.6%

Brown color, good white head. Spicy aroma, some type of Christmas ale spice, coriander maybe.

Taste, reminiscient of Jubeale, which is good. Thick malt backbone, more Christmas taste feel like in the aroma, event a decent hop match.

Mouthfeel, beer gets better throughout, pick up on some flavors that defy description on the palate. Intriguing. Recommend.

03-12-2010 20:45:26 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of Jeffwildcat
Jeffwildcat

Arizona

4.25/5  rDev +13%

03-22-2014 03:17:47 | More by Jeffwildcat
Photo of hitshtwithsticks
hitshtwithsticks

California

3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

02-06-2013 09:12:30 | More by hitshtwithsticks
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

3.83/5  rDev +1.9%

12 oz bottle dated best before Nov. 2013.

Pours a deep clear mahogany with a small, short-lived tan head; nonetheless decent lacing was left on my snifter. Aroma is rather light and subtle but this is a flavorful ale. The nose is rather sweet with a clear note of vanilla and some fruitiness over the malts. The flavor is sweet up front, balanced in the finish, and mildly bitter in the lingering vanilla-tinted, aftertaste which suggests roasted nuts and dark bread with a trace of cinnamon. Medium-full, smooth, warming feel. Higher ABV not hidden.

O: a well-crafted winter warmer that is not overly spiced, too sweet, or boozy.

12-29-2012 00:54:12 | More by chinchill
Photo of tugg407
tugg407

Florida

3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

01-06-2012 07:40:14 | More by tugg407
Photo of dr_stevebrule
dr_stevebrule


4/5  rDev +6.4%

07-09-2014 23:19:24 | More by dr_stevebrule
Photo of psykad
psykad

Florida

3/5  rDev -20.2%

11-27-2012 06:03:11 | More by psykad
Photo of Brenden
Brenden

Ohio

4.22/5  rDev +12.2%

The color is a sort of deep brownish-red with a touch of a lighter bronze in the light. This brew forms a sizeable and well-retained off-white head that leaves good lacing in pathces well down the glass.
Aromas are backed mostly by malts with a light balance of hops, which in my opinion is best for what a winter warmer should be attempting. There's definitely some diacetly at play, but it seems to be intentional, playing off notes of chocolate and grains, perhaps a touch of caramel, and adding a bit of balance to some fruit flavors as well.
Fruits come out stronger in the flavor; some notes of sweet, dark fruits like cherry. Caramel and butterscotch add to the sweetness without cloying and are expertly balanced by just enough floral and citic hops bitterness to keep it in check. Malts are strong and consistent all the way through, and a variety makes for nice complexity. Well done.
The mouthfeel is fairly rich and full without being too heavy, carbonated at just about the right level and chewy most of the way through. The finish is long and smooth.
This may be the best of the style I've tried, and my new go-to winter warmer.

02-15-2011 20:24:08 | More by Brenden
Photo of caddybuyer
caddybuyer

New Jersey

3.85/5  rDev +2.4%

A leftover from Winter 2010/11

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A-Deep amber with ruddy orange highlights and a thick sudsy light tan head that laces nicely. Attractive brew.

S-Bananna, clove, nutmeg, ringwood yeast and bready malts.

T-Roasted bready malts. A hint of clove and chocolate and a bit of citrus comes out near the finish, which is lingering and astringent with a wee bit of a hop bite.

M-decent mouthfeel. I'd like to see this a tad heavier, but it is fine.

O-Good beer for Shipyard. Decent warmer, but there are so many better ones out there. I'd like to see this a bit more aggressively spiced.

08-14-2011 20:43:04 | More by caddybuyer
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Shipyard Prelude Special Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 473 ratings.