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Frosted Frog Christmas Ale - Hoppin' Frog Brewery

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Frosted Frog Christmas AleFrosted Frog Christmas Ale

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372 Ratings
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Ratings: 372
Reviews: 144
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 16.67%
Wants: 25
Gots: 36 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  8.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: paco1029384756 on 11-16-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 372 | Reviews: 144
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.57/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle - $9.25 at Ale Yeah! in Decatur, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a mahogany-hued body with a small-sized, near-white head which settles down further into a thin ring.

Smell: A beautifully decorative Christmas bowl featuring Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer filled to capacity with McCormick-brand powdered cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger with a background sniff of alcohol. Quite potpourri-like!

Taste: Strong, altogether earnest spice character, heavy on the cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger, like biting directly into the pie crust of an amateur baker. Lightly sweet. Underlying malt characteristics of roast and dark caramel as well as some vague fruitiness. Very low hop character and bitterness. And, well, that's kind of it. Essentially spice, spice, spice until the warming, long finish. I feel I got my nine-plus bucks worth of spices.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: It's definitely not for everybody, even I'm not exactly sure what to think of it. An honest appreciation for a bold Christmastime spice character, in much the same way Southern Tier Pumking is heavy on the pumpkin and spice flavor, is an absolute must. No subtlety, no delicacy here.

Photo of beerwolf77
3.92/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Drank 12-11-10. Bomber poured into a standard pint glass.

A: Amber brown, finger of light cream hued head. Soapy lace left behind. No cap.

S: Loads of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Rich caramel malt. Smells like Christmas to me.

T: Well the spices don't let up in the flavor. Full on cinnamon, nutmeg and clovers. Luckily they blend well with the rich caramel malt. Tastes like gingerbread cookies dusted with loads of cinnamon.

M: Medium body. Rather dry. Light carbonation.

D: I actually enjoyed this . I drank the entire bomber over a couple hours during a family Christmas gathering and it certainly fit the bill.

Photo of AwYeh
3.3/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22oz bomber poured into tulip pint. Arrived at a store very close to Hoppin Frog on 12/24/10, so this one should be sufficiently fresh.

A: Pours a dark, hazy crimson-amber color, with a finger of bubbly off-white/slightly yellow head with decent retention. Lacing is on the good side of spotty.

S: Really, REALLY spicy: lots of cinnamon (enough that this could come across as a cinnamon beer), nutmeg, and clove. Some sweet, caramelly, biscuity malts, but you really need to look for them beyond all the spices. Extremely Christmasy; by far the closest a winter warmer has come to conveying the aroma of Christmas/wintertime sweets.

T: The spices carry over to taste as well, though the sweet malts do hold their own here better. Plenty of dark fruits on the finish, with a hint of alcohol adding to the beer's powerful spiciness. Very sweet overall; I'm not the biggest fan of unbalanced sweetness but this beer's flavors help it pull it off.

M: Thinner than I expected, without many qualities really standing out. It's smooth, but it goes down like water; the high ABV and heavy reliance on spices to flavor the beer both likely come into play here.

D: The alcohol and sweetness make this one a sipper, but it's an enjoyable one. Might look to pick this up again next Christmas season.

Photo of fastpass17
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber brown bottle.

A: light mahogany brown, nice carbonation, clings to the glass

S: spice, cinnamon, malty sweetness and caramel

T: cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger

M: a little clawing sweet, but overall for the style it works

D: split a bomber bottle

Photo of nukem5
3.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Carmel hazey nice tan cap.

S: Cinnamon clove roasty malts nutmeg good aroma and smells like Christmas in a bottle.

T: Loads of cinnamon nutmeg splash the tongue and instill delight tastes like a holiday desert...mmm

M: Full bodied and slightly chewy very little carbonation and very slight retention.

D: Very drinkable and smooth but the elevated 8.6 ABV would definitly prohibit drinking many.

Photo of aepb1
3.79/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Hazy amber/brown body, bubbly light brown head

S- Apple pie! Apples, cinnamon, bready, nutmeg

T- A lot like the nose, spices and apple and some caramel sneaks in there too. Not quite as full as the nose and that's a bit of a letdown...

M- Medium bodied and ok carbonation, nothing special

D- No more than 1 with all those spices but it's fun none-the-less

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.89/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle after Christmas weekend by chance at a local wine/beer store. This winter warmer is among one of my favorite "festive" beer where the essence of Christmas is captured in this very bottle - perfectly blended spices compliment Frosted Frog's rich malt flavors, creating the ultimate Christmas experience. There is plenty of cinnamon with hints of cloves and nutmeg, as well as subtle malty and woody undertones. It comes out of the bottle a dark, mostly transparent reddish mahogany with a decent light tan head. Flavor is malty with a firm overtone of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg - and maybe some horehound as well. There is a bit of sharp candy sweetness and just a whisper of raw wood. Texture is sharp, crisp and fizzy, leaving behind a tingly, spicy finish.

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma has a strong and pleasant spicy undertone, quite different from any other beer I have sampled, even other winter warmers and spiced ales. There is plenty of cinnamon with hints of cloves and nutmeg, as well as subtle malty and woody undertones. It comes out of the bottle a dark, mostly transparent reddish mahogany with a decent light tan head. Flavor is malty with a firm overtone of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg - and maybe some horehound as well. There is a bit of sharp candy sweetness and just a whisper of raw wood. Texture is sharp, crisp and fizzy, leaving behind a tingly, spicy finish. Happy Holidays!

Photo of twaddlac
3.12/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

A: Hazy burnt orange with a decent sized head and a lace that doesn't go away. Noticeable carbonation and seems as though it's a thick beer.

S: Very intense notes of cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. It knocked my socks off at first (I was expecting something more like GLBC's Christmas Ale). Slight honey and floral notes but you really have to go deep into the aromas if you want to find them.

T: Way too spiced. The potency of the spices is overbearing and un-enjoyable. I did have a tough time finishing this one. The aftertaste is as strong as the smell and tastes like it, too.

M: Very rich and creamy with perfect carbonation and a exceptionally smooth finish coming from something that is spiced like this.

D: I'm not saying that this beer should be avoided, but it's definitely not my style. If they would hold back a couple pounds on the spices I think it would compete with the other top Christmas ales. If you really enjoy the spices that are aforementioned then by all means get this beer.

Photo of Franz4
3.82/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- poured a maroon color, little head to speak of.

S- Smelled amazingly like baking gingerbread, cinnamon, and molasses, best part of the beer by far.

T- followed the nose but wasn't as nice, could also get a touch of cola coming through if you held the beer for any length of time.

M- nice medium bodied

D- a sipper and the strong flavor means it would be best in small quantities, but definitely worthy.

Photo of Kolsch
3.35/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

22oz bomber shared with wife.

Hoppin Frog Frosted Christmas Beer: described on label as made with cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.

Appearance: dark plum bordering real close to brown. Attractive appearance as carbonation appeared perfect.

Smell: all spices all the time with cinnamon being the most dominant.

Taste: upfront and in your face cinnamon. Nutmeg and ginger also present but the cinnamon overwhelms these two. It tastes like you ate a spoonful of dried cinnamon and became quite cloying after a few sips. Aftertaste of cinnamon not pleasant at all and really prevents the other spices from contributing in any fashion. Alcohol listed at 8.6% but hardly noticable.

Overall: had a hard time finishing the glass but glad I got to try this. Would be perfect as a 4oz taster rather than a 12oz glass.

Photo of Kegatron
1.82/5  rDev -51.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

22 oz bottle into a couple of tulip glasses.

Pours a dark clear ruby in the glass, with a ½ finger of off-white head. This retains with some thin foaminess around the edges that leaves a cascade of spotty lacing behind. The aroma is heavy with spices, along with cherries, caramel, and sugary bread. Muddled notes of clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, are all so overpowering here; it's really hard to make heads or tails of this nose at times.

The taste is a combo of more spices, roast, and caramel, which is giving off a bit of a molasses character. Dark fruit is coming out as well, as the flavors and alcohol combine into a sweet and tangy warmth that drenches the mouth. Those spices are just as dominant as they were in the nose and come out HEAVY in the finish. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied and surprisingly sharp in the carbonation department despite the overall chewy alcohol warmth in the body.

I can see where they were going with the different flavors here, but unfortunately the combo of a ridiculously heavy spice profile and overall high alcohol content rendered this a pretty much undrinkable mess. A rare drain pour for me.

Photo of projectflam86
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a slightly murky copper red color with a thin white head that sticks around for awhile.

S- An overwhelming whiff of allspice and cinnamon dominate the nose of this beer. It smells just like one of those old fashioned Christmas stores.

T- Huge waves of nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, clove and caramel malt. Really sweet with virtually no hop presence. I was expecting a dessert beer exactly but I think thats what I got.

M- Medium/full bodied with low carbonation.

D- Holy smokes! This beer is about as Christmas as beers gets. I like it ok, but I couldn't even try to drink more than one of these.

Photo of SpdKilz
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2009 Vintage.

Appearance - Pours a chocolate red into a generic tulip. About a half finger of tan head is achieved with a moderate pour that dissipates relatively fast, leaving slight lacing.

Smell - A blast of cinnamon and nutmeg are immediately noticeable. Other Christmas spices flow from the glass, which is eventually followed by just a hint of caramel and malt.

Taste - Wow, similar to the nose. HEAVY spices...more so than any other beer I have experienced to be perfectly honest. I will say, quite the perfect Christmas beer.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, lower carbonation.

Drinkability - For sure a one and done. Pretty intense with spices and a bit overdone to be honest.

Photo of cooncat
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a standard shaker pint glass as 'cellar floor' temperature. I must admit to surprise and disappointment on the pour. The head seemed to come out as would a carbonated soft drink. The minimal head last less than 30 seconds, and I'm now looking at a glass that has no head or lace. Color is a beautiful hue of red, which offers some saving grace to the appearance. I've noted that others were able to raise some head with theirs, so perhaps I have a bad bottle? I got it right from the brewery a few months ago, so I know its fresh.

The nose is lightly spiced, mostly cinnamon with some malty sweetness mixed in. Again, this bottle is below the standard I expect from beers from this brewer.

The taste definitely offers a cinnamon kick, with nutmeg coming in second, and ginger hardly making a show. A caramel maltiness is next in line, with no hop presence at all. The alcohol is only noticable with the warming as you swallow. I get more bitterness from the spices than from hops, but that is expected for this style. Carbonation seems awfully low ... perhaps the reason I wasn't able to rouse any kind of head. With the low carbonation, the mouthfeel is medium+. Drinkability isn't huge, as the spiciness and rather flat carbonation seem to take the life out of this. I'll finish the bomber, but if I had another, I wouldn't open it .. I'd try to trade it.

I've had lots of Hoppin' Frog brews, and most of them are in the 'A' range ... which is why this beer is so puzzling to me. I guess its possible that I just got a bad bottle that had a poor cap seal, and it decarbed over the 3 months that I've had it. Nonetheless, this was a huge Christmas disappointment. I wouldn't necessarily base your judgement of this beer on this review, because this is definitely not typical of this brewery. If you get a chance to pick one up, do so, as this bottle has to be an anomaly.

Na Zdravje!

Photo of BARFLYB
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle with Oglmcdgl at the Hulmeville Inn. Cliff notes

Frosted frog comes into the glass looking bright brown hazy red with a nice firm cap of brown/tan foam that left small notches. Good retention. Frosty has a nose on it, this one is a pungent sonofabitch. Smell is christmas cheer with cinnamon, candi canes, ginger, nutmeg and just a bunch of spice. Frosted travels up the nostrils. Taste takes a step back from that. Nice amounts of cinnamon clash with the spices leaving a warming effect on the tounge, they dancin. Brown suga and some candy apple. Cant taste the booze under the mound of additions in this one. Feel is a bold medium with some staying power on the mouth. Sweet, spicy and not cloying or approaching it, very approachable. Not spritzy, very smooth and a coater on the tounge. I drank half a bottle and wanted more. A sipper or a gulper, you decide.

Photo of oglmcdgl
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bottle split with onix1agr at the hulme.

A- two good fingers of off white head from hard pour that settles rather quickly to leave a bunch of cascading lace, a solid ring and a this skin on top. Hazy red orange brown in color.

S- wow that a lot of spice probably more then I've ever come across in any beer I've ever smelled. Cinnamon and not fake cinnamon the real shit that has a huge wintergreen character to it. Cloves, nutmeg, some dried orange peel. Toasted cinnamon raisin bread with brown sugar on top. I get a bit of winterberry shrubbery, I know it sounds crazy but if you've ever smell one you will know.

T- a good interplay between sweet and spice. The cinnamon and cloves are still there but to a lesser extent then in the nose. Brown sugar and caramel like sweetness with a good but of toasted bread and roasted malts. I'm kinda glad that its not as aggressive on flavor as it is on the nose.

M- just about medium in body maybe a tick fuller with a good mediumish carb that fits just right. The spices do a number on the palate with a slightly astringent quality. You can feel the spices.

D- this is one hell of a winter warmer. The spice is extremely bold in the nose but not as heavy in the taste. One I'm glad I tried and one ill try again with people on a special occasion when it fits the bill.

Photo of TheHoppiest
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a cloudy copper with minimal ivory-colored head.

Smells of ginger, cloves, cinnamon and allspice. Very spicy indeed!

Sweet and spicy, with a decent amount of malt. Cinnamon, ginger and clove dominate, with a fruity ending. Absolutely no bitter at all; rather a peppery finish.

Medium bodied, this has a nice mouthfeel.

Rather drinkable, I can't wait to try their barrel aged Christmas ale.

Photo of Rhettroactive
1.42/5  rDev -61.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

From 22oz bomber

Bottom line: Way overspiced. Really. I mean way, way overspiced. I appreciate Hoppin' Frog pushing it to the limit here, but it literally reaches said limit and jumps the shark.

Cinnamon and spice and everything nice - but in steriodal proportions that made me extremely nauseous - this coming from a man with an iron stomach.

I can certainly say I tried, but this one hit the drain.

Avoid this EPIC FAILURE at all costs.

Photo of mrandypandy
1.71/5  rDev -54%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

22oz bottle recieved as an extra. Thanks!

A- Pours a medium amber/ruby with brownish tints. Medium off-white head.
S- Cinnamon, cinnamon, and some other spices. Way too overpowering.
T- Awful. A blatant assault of cinnamon and spices. Way too strong, no balance.
M- Medium body.
D- Negative. After my first sip I wish I could have taken it back.

Overall - This is an abysmal attempt at a beer. If you want your taste-buds to take a cinnamon beating, and the idea of liquid red-hots beer excites you, then give this a shot. Otherwise, try any other half-way decent winter warmer that isn't spices just for the sake of spices.

Photo of Thorpe429
1.56/5  rDev -58.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Bottle picked up at Rick's in Alexandria. Thanks, Jon, for warning me. Unfortunately, Amyliz4 insisted that we buy and drink this. Even worse, she likes it. Served in a St. Bernardus goblet.

Pours a moderate brown color with a bit of a crimson hue. Single-finger head falls quite quickly without any lacing. A thin collar around the edges with a bit of a spiderweb cap on top. Nose is straight-up cinnamon. Cinnamon domination here. That'll open up your nostrils. Not offensive, just quite overpowering.

Then comes the taste. Are you kidding me? Half a jar of cinnamon into some lightly-sweetened water. Carbonate it up a bit and you've got Frosted Frog! Wow, this is not a good-tasting beer. I suppose aside from the cinnamon there's also a bit of light spruce character. Either way, this is just a cinnamon bomb and basically unpalatable. Son of a lady frog does this taste stay with me...I really can't get it out of my mouth. I don't even know if a shot of gin would work at this point. Mouthfeel? Spice. Cinnamon. Yuck. I'd drainpour the rest of this bottle if Amy didn't insist on drinking it all.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy deep reddish to amber color with a small off white head. In the aroma, clove, licorice, anise, cinnamon, and ginger. In the taste, big dry cinnamon, then a mixture of spices, and ends with a dry clove taste. A cinnamon/ spice bite and a medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry cinnamon and clove aftertaste. Big spice, but nice. I bet this would age nicely, as well as, I would love to find the barrel aged version.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Body is a beautiful dark, transparent mahogany hue. Bubbles can be seen slowly rising to the top. Pours with a one finger or so eggshell head this slowly fades to a thin collar-and no lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Nose is quite spicy-lots of nutmeg with a bit of cinnamon as well and hust a hint of ginger. A sublte maltiness and a hint of warm alcohol lie in the background.

T- Taste is similar to the nose. The hot ginger comes through a lot more in the flavor with nutmeg and cinnamon to compliment it. A mild chocolate and caramel background can be detected. The cinnamon and nutmeg come through a bit more for the finish as the ginger fades a bit and a slight alcohol astringency hits for the finish as well. Mainly nutmeg lingers with a soft warm alcohol blanket.

M- Low to medium carbonation and medium weight body that is slightly dry.

D- This is a good brew overall-and pretty much what I think of when I think "winter warmer" the spices dominate and there is a slight warmth. This reminds me of a spiced scotch ale. Very good overall.

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.2/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from Ale Yeah! in Decatur. Pours a dark orange with a somewhat short head. Redolant of spices in the nose. Nice cinammon, ginger, and lesser nutmeg aromas. Slightly sweet in the mouth, with bubblegum to start, followed by more spice- particularly ginger, with some cinnamon and nutmege in equal parts, and a finish that has more maltiness. Quite nice for the winter. Smooth, slightly sweet, and a bit nutty on the finish. I enjoyed this.

Photo of nlmartin
3.17/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The beer was chilled and served in a pint glass.

Appearance: The body of the beer is ruby colored. The head was pale white with very little retention. No lacing marks my glass.

Smell: The aroma of the beer is mulled apple cider with nice spicy nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamon, ginger, brown sugar, and molasses.

Taste: Very sweet spicy apple pie hits my palate. The spiced flavor is as I expected from the aroma. The spices give a bit of bitterness to balance the brews sweetness. No alcohol is present in the flavor.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability: The body is medium. The carbonation is low and at times seems flat. The beer isnt a drain pour but not sure I would repeat this beer again. Given the choice between this beer or Anchor Steam Christmas I am rolling with Anchor Steam.

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Frosted Frog Christmas Ale from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 372 ratings.