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Smuttynose Winter Ale - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Winter AleSmuttynose Winter Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

961 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 961
Reviews: 483
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 11.48%
Wants: 14
Gots: 58 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  5.83% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 10-30-2005

Smuttynose Winter Ale is a full-bodied, amber beer brewed with a special Trappist ale yeast. Stylistically reminiscent of a Belgian Abbey Double, it features fruity aromas and flavor, balanced by soft Crystal hops. Warming, mellow & pleasantly complex, Smuttynose Winter Ale is your perfect cold weather companion.

30 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 961 | Reviews: 483
Reviews by philbe311:
Photo of philbe311
3.8/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - A lush rich creamy whipped late to develop three plus fingers worth of light-to-medium khaki colored head... Rock star retention... The color is a murky and is a notch darker than medium brown... A good bit of carbonation is present under close examination... Small bubbled sluggish carbonation at the bottom of the glasses accelerates to a moderate pace by the time it reaches the top... Rings of lacing cling to the sides of the glass...

S - The nose of mild but pleasant... Multifaceted and no single aroma dominates... Toasted malt... Brown sugar... Plums... Fig... A very subtle spiciness... Many of the expected Belgian yeast components are missing... None the less, this one is very pleasant and inviting...

T - A bit of the Belgian yeast presence that was missing on the nose emerges on the palate... It's at the forefront along with the brown sugar... Buried a layer or two beneath the surface is the toasted malts, dark bread, and dark fruit components... Some cinnamon and assorted other spices rise on the finish...

M - The creamy forth greats your lips first... On the lighter side of medium bodied... Moderate carbonation... Even and consistent... There is a touch of dryness on the finish... Perhaps a bit thin... A bit more thickness or lushness would go a long way...

D - Not sure about the stye classification... I would consider this one a brown ale with some faint Belgian characteristics rather than a Dubbel... Regardless, it's an interesting and satisfying brew... Not world class by any means, but it's slightly different and interesting enough to impress me... A nice take on the winter seasonal...

More User Reviews:
Photo of BradtheGreat7
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review taken from notes: Early December 2013

12 oz brown bottle with the usual Smuttynose odd labeling of random people or events. This particular label displays a woman strolling through the winter's snow all bundled up and seems to be enjoying gracing Smutty's winter seasonal bottling. Can't argue with that. I guess it takes a bit of respect to appreciate labels like what smuttynose slaps on their brews, but its really a part of what they are. An enjoyable yet appropriate winter labeling. Poured into a 12 oz Stemmed tulip. Belgian style!

A - dark amber color with hints of a near purple cloud effect to it. Creamy head pours quite large and its color fits perfectly with its dubbel colored body. Head thins out to a splotchy but still creamy ring of lace leaving pretty good stick though it disappears soon after it starts to stick.

S - lovely dark fruit aroma up front followed by some sweet caramel malt and Belgian style yeast while finishing with a straight out of Belgium spice in the back.

T - dark fruits, Belgian yeast and spices. Earthy character with some more on the toasted sweet caramel malts.

M - medium bodied and smooth. An easy drinker and highly session like dubbel. Wonderful texture that stays true to Smutty's quality and style. Just a great drinking dubbel for any winter occasion.

O - may I just say that I love dubbel's and I enjoy seeing an American brewery pull one off. Though this wasnt intended on slamming you with a massive Trappist inspired 8% dubbel. This is a creation of its own and one Smuttynose can be proud of. One we can sit down during the cold winter months and drink all night long with friends and family. Yes, a tasty treat during these brutally cold months but still allowing for a Cadillac of a brew. Easy going and flows perfectly. These were Smutty's intentions and I look forward to this for years to come.

Photo of oberon
3.37/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet a very deep brown a thin quick to fade light brown head set atop no lace left behind,alot of diferent things going on in the nose somewhat medicinal and herbal with notes of chocolate and dark fruit as well.Seemd a bit sharp in the mouth and not real full,flavors seem a bit dumbed down somewhat yeasty with cola-like flavors and dark fruit but they really dont assert themselves much.The sharp mouthfeel becomes more assertive as I drink more really making it less drinkable.Eh not my thing here I dont drnk many of the style but I look a well made dubbel,Iam sorry but this falls a bit short.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Manchester Airport, waiting for my flight to Florida.
The beer was a dark brown color with a sizable tan head. A bit of lace was apparent.
The aroma was of brown sugar, sweet fruit, and caramel malts.
Taste of caramel, raisins, a bit of spiciness.
Sweet, substantial mouthfeel.
Not your typical winter beer. A nice take on the part of Smuttynose.

Photo of SunDevilBeer
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dubbel??? Always seen this beer as more of a scotch ale. Nonetheless, like it as a winter seasonal since it differs from the mold.

Peat-ish, caramelly scent and taste as it's always been, dark brown in appearance. Slight spice & caramel up front, peat in the finish.

Alcohol is subdued so this is a sessionable beer at holiday gatherings.

Very drinkable - a steady beer when I tire of SN Celebration & Berkshire Cabin Fever.

Photo of bishopdc0
3.38/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer appears as amber in color slightly darker then your average with a decent head and lace.

The nose is malty with a hint of nutty/pale maltyness.

The taste is malty caramel with a load of pale malt. It finishes with a slight citrus.

The mouth is light and is a very drinkable dubble but this also i think degrades its overall quality taste

Photo of Doomcifer
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark cherry/mahogany color with a nice frothy head that retains well. Nice lacing. Smells of sweet malts, earthy hops. Tastes of candied malts, caramel, dark fruit, cherries, and a light earthy hop spice to finish. Slick, wet mouthfeel. Pretty good.

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Stella challis.

A - Three-finger head of egg cream white pillowy foam that slowly collapses on itself, leaving a ring around the edge. Deep amber/brown with a dark orange border and cloudy.

S - Citrus hops, caramel, and malt.

T - Toasted malts with a light roast edge, spice, caramel, and pine/citrus hops on the finish.

M - Good carbonation without being fizzy. Nice structure and good body. Its spice/hop finish lingers.

D - A quite enjoyable winter warmer. Could well enjoy sipping 2-3 of these in a sitting.

Photo of mattf311
3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, like a dubble should. It smells and tastes of chocolate and slightly of coffee. Don't get me wrong its a good beer but the chocolate/coffee taste is a little too disjoint from the rest of the beer's flavor. This takes away from the complexity and cohesiveness of the beer. It has a nice mouthfeel though. Its adequately carbonated and drinkable. I could have a few of these in an evening.

Photo of Billolick
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ouncer, best before date (March, 07) notched on the label. Pours dark honey amber, pretty clear, sporting a dark tan head, that leaves scattered slippery lacing, nose on this one is of smokey raisins and some malts. Smokey, oily offering, I dont get too many "Dubbel" feelings here, this hits my taste buds and other senses as a smoked up, wintery brew. Dry finish, cant say I'm in love with this stuff, perhaps as a cold weather nightcapper

Photo of warriorsoul
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Decided to go with one of my favorite breweries for putting a little splash in my mug...Smutty all the way.
First tasted this beer at an awesome beer dinner at The Farmhouse in Emmaus, PA over the Thanksgiving weekend with my wife...was real glad to see Smuttynose on the menu.
Pours a clear rust amber with a half finger of off-white head...just a fine layer remains for the duration, producing some thin lace.
A nice mix of sweet malt, gentle spice and some molasses in the nose.
Taste is very enjoyable...all of the above finds its way into the flavor plus a nice smoked profile in the finish. Not sure of the abv, but there is not alcohol detected even as it warms to room temperature.
Mouthfeel is above average and the carbonation is a touch high...very easily consumed and one I will seek out on tap in the near future.
Another solid representation of the style from the boys up north.

Photo of tigg924
3.8/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: amber in color, moderate carbonation, cloudy, 1/3 inch head

Smell: toasted malt, bread, and tree bark

Taste: toasted malt, bread, sweet caramel, cinnamon, and small hops

Mouthfeel: semi-sweet, medium body with moderate/high carbonation

Drinkability: A good dubbel that I could have two or three of. I do like the breadiness of it. I would get this again.

Photo of jakester
4.27/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this as a single at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. I drank it in a goblet. Best before date clearly notched on the label.

Pours a pretty clear ruby red with brown tints around the edges. A light tan head forms on top, then quickly vanishes to a scant ring around the glass. No real lacing.

Aroma is big malt combined with spices like nutmeg, cinammon, and cloves. There is also a detectable yeasty, musty smell there; some nice Belgian funk.

First flavor is a smoked malt character, quickly followed by dark, sweet caramel malt. Then you can taste cinammon and nutmeg and cloves(?). It's fairly sweet, with a lingering smokey/spicy aftertaste. Hop character is very low.

Mouthfeel is medium to full, with a lingering sweetness. Carbonation is low to medium. Finish is a long oily slickness, pleasant.

I guess this is a Belgian Dubbel. It fits the criteria, but I don't remember having one like this. It IS a very good winter ale, however. Very malty, the spices meld with it really well, and a low hop character. And I swear, this has smoked malt in it, a nice touch, to say the least. Highly recommended.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.82/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle pulled from my fridge. best before may 2010 on side of label. poured into a bulb glass.

this beer pours a very hazy brownish amber color with a thin off white head off of a vigorous pour that faded to a thin ring pretty quickly.

in the aroma, your hit with a fairly nice malt profile. sweet, slightly roasted, toffee, caramel, and a little chocolate malt. a slight dose of estery alcohol and spice.

them nice malts transfer to the taste as well. slightly roasted, chocolate, sweet, toffee and caramel malts. tiny bits of estery alcohol show through the malt but still retains a medium to light body. carbonation is nice, a bit prickly on the tongue at times.

pretty decent drinkability, but there are far better winter style ales to session out there. not much of a belgian dubbel. a nice try non the less. id love to have this side by side with this years upcoming smutty winter ale.

Photo of far333
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear copper colored with a thick beige head that sits a full inch atop the liquid. The head settles out quickly. Aroma of yeast and toffee, cinnamon, and ripe fruits. Flavor is mild Belgian yeast upfront, followed by brown sugar and caramel, mild malt sweetness, with a fine hop bitter riding beneath. Finishes a little peppery. Full and rich mouthfeel with a slight carbonation tingle in the finish.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

WTF, is a 4.5% beer now a dubbel, somebody change that rediculous label on this brew. Best by June 2010 yeah fuckin' right, I had this during Christmas on tap at Sharp Edge in Washington County the Brasserie. Low abv beers are meant to move quick brewed in october or november this is dead by march or april I don't care what Trappist yeast you use. Pours a deep clouded amber mahogany brown hue with a light beige khaki head, nice head retention again another gusher as I cracked it open, WTF? Aroma has a creamy nut and fruit combo let's go with crushed almonds and raisins cooked in a cookie dough maybe an Italiano biscotti. Flavor has a creamy sweetness going on okay I will swallow my words it is a dubbel light slight tart apple raisin combo with a nutty yeast flavor going on it's really a nice session ale a bit of a dryness in finish more power to 'em I didn't enjoy the draft as much. Maybe a 4.5% brew was too young with the yeast in the bottle this brew is drinking nice, I bough this for 2 bucks a bottle. Mouthfeel is medium bodied dry finish on the palate carbonation is even during the drinking experience but was pretty much a volcanic explosion on the opening of the cap.

Photo of chinchill
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle served in standard pint glass.
Small amount of sediment in bottle; as much as possible was added to glass before consumption.

Beer pours a hazy reddish brown with an attractive if short-lived light brown head.

This is more like your standard Belgian dubbel than like a typical American winter ale. In contrast to the typical (if there is such a thing) American winter ale, this brew has a more fruity aroma and is less spicy in both aroma and taste. The beer is rather low in alcohol and, perhaps, a bit hoppier and less bold than an average Belgian dubbel. In any case, the bottom line is a fine, and distinctive beer, with good balance and drinkability.

Slightly watery mouthfeel.

Photo of glid02
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Porter Beer Bar in Atlanta.

Pours a hazy purplish-amber color with a half-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of sweet dark malts with hints of raisins and figs.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Dark malt flavors kick things off and are not quite as sweet as the nose would intimate. Coming in shortly thereafter are moderate amounts of dark fruits - raisins mostly with hints of crisp figs - and slight amounts of spices. The spices fade out quickly, allowing the malt and fruits to carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this beer just didn't have much of an identity, it just was. Not a terrible beer by any stretch but not worth seeking out.

Photo of mcarroll10177
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An all around solid winter beer.

A- amber brown with a tan head and medium carbination

S- malt with fresh floral notes

T- balanced malt with some cinnaminn spice

M- not over carbinated and just heavy enough for the style

D- a solidly balanced beer that gets my thorugh the new england winter nights

Photo of Brenden
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a hazy brown with mahogany hues. The head rests at just more than one finger. Retention is good and some patchy lacing sticks to the glass.
Some sweetness with a grains backing is on the nose, and there's a weird spiciness going on. That could possibly be attributed to a light spicing combined with the Trappist yeast. There is a touch of dark fruits here as well. Interesting is the proper word, I think.
This is nicely malty, with plenty of toasty breads. The funky spice-yeast combination is a little off, though. Otherwise it's a good brew, but I think too much thought went into making it winter-specific. There's a touch of clove and a light nip of alcohol as well.
Carbonation is at a medium level, which works for this one, keeping it from being flat and bland without making it spritzy. The body is medium with a nice thickness to it.
I'll take another, but there are winter-specific beers I'd pick up first.

Photo of ixnay21
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From bottled served in pint glass

A-reddish brown a little more on the red side, nice sticky head

S-dark fruit, little bready smell and just a little hops in the back end

T-Beligian fruit yeast taste with a nice malt backbone slight hop bitter in the back end good lasting aftertaste

M-some prickly carbanation upfront, thick with a lingering feel to it.

O-another nice seasonal from smutty, a nice switch from over spiced/over boozed seasonals

Photo of TheycallmeTim
3.38/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice.

A--An aggressive pour yields a two finger dense cola-flavored head and an almost textbook mahogany reddish-brown body. Looks like a glass of bing cherry juice. Head dissipated to skim rather quickly and left only a few traces of lace in the glass.

S--Lots and lots of plum, and not much else--maybe a hint of clove or a deeper incense aroma? But, again, kinda one dimensional. This is a dubbel? I poured this into a chalice for that nose? I'm Ron Burgundy?

T--Wait. What? A little of the plum lasts but it mostly just tastes like a fruity brown ale, with caramel malts stealing the stage followed by a hop presence that seems to belie the style. I actually like the idea of spicing up a winter beer with some hops, but I don't see /any/ of the yeast that would mark this as a Belgian style in the flavor profile.

M--Yuck. Watery. Not my thing at all, though the active carbonation does liven and lighten it up.
D--This is a stronger beer than I realized, and pleasantly warming, rather than a knock to the head. If I want a DIPA or a Russian Stout I'll buy one; thank you Smuttynose for keeping this in bounds at a little under seven percent. Other than that the beer is smooth enough to pack away a few.

I really, really wanted to like this beer because a) I've been impressed by everything else from Smuttynose and b) the label hands down gets my vote for most awesome. But I was left wondering if this was actually a dubbel, or a hopped up brown ale, or, I dunno, a Belgian dark...Maybe just call it a winter warmer and be done with it.

Photo of dacrza1
3.81/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

DATE TASTED: April 23, 2014... GLASSWARE: Kisatsky Tavern pint... OCCASION: Easter The Desolation of Smaug on spring break--thanks, Shan!... APPEARANCE: velvety dark amber red body; frothy, creamy off-white head; strong, cloudy lacing... AROMA: doughy, bready malts early; cinnamon, nutmeg and some floral pine resin too--with a hint of clove; a pleasure to breath in...PALATE: medium-bodied, creamy and lively--warming and substantial...TASTE: soft, rounded, almost nutty malted finish; buttery too; more subtle flavors of indistinguishable fruits than the aroma suggests, with the main influence on the taste buds being the malts... OVERALL: a solidly-built, easy-sipping ale that feels right on a windy, cold April night....

Photo of NJpadreFan
2.76/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Smuttynose Winter Ale

Appearance- dark blood red with a thick head that quickly disappears.
Smell- cherries and cinnimon.
Taste- smooth cherry with a sh!tload of cinnimon maybe a dash of clove dumped in. Alcohol is present in the flavor.
Mouthfeel- smooth and warm. Very bland.

Overall- A incredibly bland ale! What little flavor is so watered down. This would be a decent Winter Ale if they kicked the flavor up a notch or two. Very disappointing from such a good brewery!

Photo of tastybeer
3.92/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Copper, ruby-brown color with an ok white head. A little white ring remains when it fades. Smells like spiced fruits, sweet caramel and a hint of banana. A little bit of soft smokey chocolate. Taste is malty with slight cocoa, fruit and spice. Pretty good. Nice crisp carbonation, medium body, and slick mouthfeel. Friendly beer with an easy drinkability.

Good interesting twist on the dubbel that I'm sure I'll pick up again sometime.

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Smuttynose Winter Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 961 ratings.