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Hibernation Ale - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hibernation AleHibernation Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,198 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,198
Reviews: 1,064
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 97
Gots: 114 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  8.70% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-26-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,198 | Reviews: 1,064 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of FosterJM


4.22/5  rDev +4.7%

19th Review on BA
Bottle poured to Pint glass.
Bottle date 9/2/10

App- Very dark mahogany brown, a nice light 1 finger head that left rather quickly leaving a very enticing swirl pattern.

Smell- Big, thick, malty and heavy. A little spices and some brown sugar to the nose.

Taste- It had a wonderful caramel, sweet and sticky taste to it. Not what I was expectiing but was it good. Had the same taste as the nose.

Mouth- Like eating a piece of candy bursting with beer flavor. It was very enticing to keep drinking and find the flavors develop for 8.7.

Drink- On a cold day in the mountains(you lucky people in denver to have fresh batches) I could probably would take the 6 pack down and then head for a nice nap by the fire. Glad I even got 1 to have.

10-26-2010 16:47:42 | More by FosterJM
Photo of Gobzilla


4.1/5  rDev +1.7%

A: poured a amber ruby brown with a thin bubbly khaki colored head that left a little frothy lacing sticking to the glass.

S: off the bat I was greeted by hops and peanut butter aromas with a good booze presence but I also detected slight brown sugar.

T/M: the taste also had good hop character with nutty accents and the booze was very well hidden in the flavor. it also had some citrus notes as well. the brew was light to medium in body with a pretty good amount of carbonation which had a hoppy, nutty, citrusy, and slight boozy finish.

D: drank really good for an old ale but I have to say it caught me off guard on the overall qualities of this beer. IMO in was leaning towards more an amber it style; oh well.

10-26-2010 02:41:55 | More by Gobzilla
Photo of RedBrewer83


4.4/5  rDev +9.2%

Poured into snifter...

A: Pours a dark amber with hints of ruby in the light, short one finger frothy head falls to a thin ring around the edge of the glass.

S: Huge aroma of molasses, caramel, faint hops, booze, vanilla, candy fruits, very complex and balanced.

T: Follows nose, big caramel malt, candied fruits, molasses, vanilla, again very complex and well rounded, the hops come in on the finish and balance everything out.

M: Smooth medium body with nice carbonation and a clean finish for 8.7% abv.

D: Incredibly smooth and drinkable, and so delicious it keeps me coming back for more and more!

10-25-2010 23:47:11 | More by RedBrewer83
Photo of GeezLynn


3.9/5  rDev -3.2%

Bottled 10/05/10

A: Dark shade of amber. Cream colored head starts out full and frothy and retreats to a collar/film combination.

S: Toasted malt, with a leafy hop contribution. A little coffee, a little toast.

T: Loads of sweet caramel malt brings to mind raisins, plums and toffee. A slightly smoky, nutty flavor compliments the heavy bread and malt sugars well. Plenty of depth here. Finally, the light hop bitterness lingers through the otherwise sweet finish.

M: Full body with low carbonation. Good mouth cling, but not quite sticky. Alcohol is pretty well hidden.

Just a touch sweet for my tastes, but otherwise very good. I have enjoyed all of the GD beers I have tried and Hibernation is no exception.

10-25-2010 03:32:08 | More by GeezLynn
Photo of SpdKilz


4.05/5  rDev +0.5%

Appearance - Pours into my glass with a rather clear, fizzy coca-cola appearance. About a finger of tan fluffy head is achieved with a moderate pour, that is slowly dissipating leaving nice looking lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell - Dark roasted malts, alcohol, nuttiness, caramel, slight hops.

Taste - Similar to the nose, but oh so smooth. I get an initial bitterness from the roasted malts which melds in with the slight hops smelled in the nose. All the while there is an overtone of nuts and light caramel. Overall, the beer is bitter throughout the sip, from start to finish. Not as heavy of a malt backbone as expected.

Mouthfeel - Silky, creamy, medium bodied, lower carbonation, finishes bitter.

Drinkability - A sipper, though I notice myself taking rather large sips. I don't taste the alcohol, though there is definite alcohol warmth. I'm actually digging how it is a bit more bitter than expected - makes this not overly sweet. I would try this if I see it available as a single.

10-25-2010 01:19:41 | More by SpdKilz
Photo of TheHoppiest


4.05/5  rDev +0.5%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with an August 31, 2010 bottle date, into an oversized wine glass.

Pours a burgundy brown, and glows like a garnet when held up ton the light. Very little head when poured, and further reduces to a thin skin of tan foam on top, mostly ringing the edge of the glass.

Has a yeasty, malty aroma, earthy, leafy, and dark. I think of leather, currants, and alcohol when I smell this.

Very full tasting on the tongue; sweet currant, black grapes and fermented apricots start off, with a bready middle landing on the tongue, with alcohol and oak finishing it before a bitter denouement.

Full in the mouth, this is definitely a slow sipper.

I've had this before on tap, but am enjoying it more from the bottle. Either way, though, this is a nice beer to sip.

10-25-2010 01:02:47 | More by TheHoppiest
Photo of MbpBugeye


3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

A- Clear, deep amber that approaches copper. No real head, just thin lines of lace where a rough pour filled the glass.

S- Slightly in the hoppier, stinging side of the style. Malts come over very strong on toffee. Standard fare pine and a bit of citrus from hops. Lots of roasted nuts a touches of chocolate round out the aroma.

T- Very close balance between nuttiness and piney hops. The faint touches of chocolate come out in the flavor too. Lots of toffee, leather and tree bark.

M- Perhaps a touch thin and prickly, but it feels clean and isn't sticky.

10-24-2010 19:44:37 | More by MbpBugeye
Photo of movingtrain


3.53/5  rDev -12.4%

12 ounce bottle sampled from a small snifter.

The appearance here has a dark copper, amber color. There isn't much of a head, more of a small oil rainbow floating on top, with some carbonation slowly slinking up the sides of the glass.

The smell is nice and piny, with hints of vanilla, caramel, cinnamon, black pepper, clove, and oak.

The flavor is slightly bourbony, with hints of vanilla and wood. There are some hops in there, but they play a backseat to some of the more spicy notes of this beer. Across the middle of the tongue is almost a black pepper flavor, giving way to a charred wood sweetness. There is a little smoke in the flavor, and some medicinal flavors, as well.

Overall, not a bad one, especially for a Winter warmer...this one will be great in the colder months of the year. This one is relatively drinkable, and would be good over a nice steak or roast dinner.

10-24-2010 17:02:08 | More by movingtrain
Photo of TheSeeker61


4.03/5  rDev 0%

A- Reddish brown with minimum head which a head ring hung around.

S- Slight coffee smell.

T- Begins with a chocolate, middle is a hoppy, finishes with a citrus chocolate. Kinda IPAish to some degree.

M- Has a moderate mouthfeel.

D- I could definitely drink this again.

10-23-2010 22:00:37 | More by TheSeeker61
Photo of augustgarage


3.95/5  rDev -2%

Bottled on September 2nd, 2010. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

Clear carmine liquid with carnelian highlights and a light khaki head which dissipates into a bubbly collar and a swirling mandala of thin surface slick. Light smattering of lacing, and fast running yet sticky tears.

Figs, dates, leather, bergamot, toffee, and ester backed malt aromatics abound. The impression is of brightness and freshness rather than age (with no hint of oxidation).

The flavors mirror the nose closely, though a significant hop presence emerges mid-palate, a minty spicy dose that distinguishes this as a peculiarly American take on the style. Cherry pits and very faint vanilla notes are present as well, while the finish is moderately dry and leafy.

Oily, medium-bodied, with moderate carbonation - fairly warming from the ABV, but the unexpected "fresh" flavors make this dangerously drinkable.

The hop profile along with a potent malt base and persistent fruitiness throughout reminds me of a strong ale (e.g. a more restrained version of Arrogant Bastard, with some different emphases) more than a true Old Ale - interesting and worth trying.

10-23-2010 19:58:06 | More by augustgarage
Photo of yuriruley


4.33/5  rDev +7.4%

Appearance - reddish brown, the head dissipated quickly.

Smell - malts, brown sugar, and subtle fruit.

Taste - follows the smell, and has a good balance of the flavors. Thought it might be overly sweet or aggressive, but it wasn't.

Mouthfeel - wasn't quite as thick as I was expecting, but overall had a good mouthfeel.

Drink - pretty easy to drink, I was pretty full when I had it though. Which didn't leave me wanting another one at the moment.

My friend let me try this, he brought back a sixer from our hometown. Good beer all around. Cool that it comes in six packs, will definitely get some when I go to visit my mom.

10-23-2010 03:51:28 | More by yuriruley
Photo of takeabrewski

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Served in a pint glass.

A: 1 finger head that dissipates fairly quickly. Dark amber color.

S: I get a deep chocolate aroma, very nice. Perhaps some toffee and tobacco.

T: A lot going on here. I get fruit and alcohol early on, very estery, quickly followed by a deep chocolate, and finishing up with a nicely balanced hit of hop bitterness and aroma.

M: Velvety and rich, made me keep going back for more. Not all that highly carbonated, which is appropriate for an old English ale. In retrospect, I'd sacrifice the small head for less carbonation.

D: Very nice, perhaps could have 2 during a cold fall or winter evening.

I have 2 more of these from a Great Divide sampler, and I think I'll serve the next in a smaller snifter-type glass.

10-19-2010 01:51:12 | More by takeabrewski
Photo of GreenCard


3.98/5  rDev -1.2%

Appearance: deep ruby-brown, slight haze, thin layer of yellowy foam with little head retention

Aroma: rich malty caramel; hint of sherry-like oxidation; figs, raisins, and cognac

Flavor: medium malt sweetness that quickly gives way to notes of Flor Sherry, leather, and burnt cinnamon toast; finishes semisweet with a mellow, woody bitterness

Mouthfeel: full body, pert carbonation, creamy; mellow alcohol warmth

Other comments: For some reason, I was expecting this to be lackluster, but it is quite delicious. Something I would seek out again.

10-17-2010 23:44:59 | More by GreenCard
Photo of womencantsail


3.3/5  rDev -18.1%

A: The pour is a clear, dark mahogany color with a minimal off-white head forming that quickly dies away.

S: Mildly sweet toffee, brown sugar, and molasses come through up front. Some mild hints of dark fruits, namely plums and black cherries. Not really any alcohol, which is good.

T: Not quite as impressive in terms of the flavor. Toffee and molasses, with perhaps a hint of nutty bread. Not really sweet, or bitter, or fruity. Sort of boring.

M: Medium body with a low carbonation that is somewhat smooth.

D: The aroma of this beer got my hopes up, but the flavor was certainly a let down. Maybe a little age would help this one out.

10-17-2010 00:06:30 | More by womencantsail
Photo of Elimination


4.3/5  rDev +6.7%

Finally got a 6r of this beast

Look is a dark reddish brown, i mean, it looks thick and stong, very thin head that kind of disappeared quick.

Smell is strong sweet malts, cherry, brown sugar. This smells wonderful, strong and robust burts of fruit and a bit of maple come through.

Taste is very unique, being this is one of the first 'old ales' Ive ever had its a joyful experiences. Strong, very malt forward, bursting with sweetness.

Mouthfeel is super thick, strong thick bubbles wish this wouldnt end.

Drink is very good, but a long with most high alc brews only a few will do. Along with that, this is something that really works the palette and will throw your tastebuds off a bit.

10-16-2010 01:40:04 | More by Elimination
Photo of vkv822


4.45/5  rDev +10.4%

12oz. bottle into snifter.

The beer pours a cola brown, though when held to the light appears a deep maroon with a thin wheat-colored head and dissipates into a light swirl across the top of the beer with some bubbles collecting around the edge of the glass.

The aroma is of nutty, caramel malts. Towards the finish the malt notes blend well into light, fruity hop notes.

Extremely well balanced range of nutty, caramel malts, dark fruits and a light citric/fruitiness from the hops.

The mouthfeel is smooth, coats the mouth and has just enough carbonation without overdoing it.

This is a very well done beer, and considering the great price, I am planning on stocking up on more ASAP. Definitely the most drinkable old ale I have had thus far.

10-15-2010 03:10:41 | More by vkv822
Photo of codewarrior

New York

3.9/5  rDev -3.2%

12oz from Mix-and-match 6-pack, into a Snifter.

A: Pours thick deep amber, 1 finger of head. Transparent but rich.

S: Touch of iron in an otherwise sweet and scotchy nose.

T: Rich and old, sweetness starts slow and builds into a full body. Finish is fruit and caramel.

F: Thick and rich.

D: Everyday old ale.

10-13-2010 04:30:18 | More by codewarrior
Photo of Overlord


4.47/5  rDev +10.9%

Pours a rich mahogany, leather-y brown with some slight orange/amber tones to it. Nice light tan head that settles down to a thin crust and swirls around the top of the beer. Looks good.

Smells like nutty caramel with a hint of brown sugar and a dollop of ... molasses? Hmm.... maybe some citrus and tropical sweetness to. Wow.

Taste is remarkable. Simply one of the best tasting for the money beers I've ever had. Flat out thrilled with Great Divide's introduction to California thus far. Luscious, overlapping caramel, brown sugar, a hint of nutty earthiness, some sweet mandarin orange-y citrus, and a light bitterness on the tongue. It's a sweet beer, and the malts are complemented wonderfully.

Nice chewy mouthfeel. So comforting and smooth.

10-10-2010 20:53:16 | More by Overlord
Photo of EtOHMD


4.2/5  rDev +4.2%

On tap at picco in Boston. Poured into a goblet. Not much head but wonder if that's just way it was poured based on other reviews. Nice chestnut brown color with ruby tinges especially on edges. Nice sticky lacing. Smells of oak, licorice, maple syrup. Some pine coming thru as it warms. Intensity of aromas predicts the taste. Definitely intense but quite welcome. Complex taste with dry red wine, chocolate, resin. Feel is tick and chewy leaving sticky feel. Could go for maybe 2 but not much more tonite. Overall an excellent beer.

10-09-2010 23:59:04 | More by EtOHMD
Photo of Halcyondays


2.93/5  rDev -27.3%

12 oz. bottle, bottled 9/2/10,

A: Pours a medium brown with a light finger of white head, average retention, some lace.

S: Malty, dark sugar, with a considerable hoppiness.

T: Has the dark winter malt flavours which I liked. The hops take over midway through the beer gets very bitter and earthy, with a cloying sugary finish.

M: Full-bodied, creamy, as I said before cloying residual sugar, aftertaste is not good.

D: This bottle is extremely young, the flavours are promising, but not coming together very well. It's an awkward beer. I find it too overhopped for the style, but it's something I would love to try again with 1-2 years on it, it's not really a fun beer to drink fresh. It's like drinking a really fresh Bordeaux or Chateauneuf-du-Pape, it's not really drinkable fresh beacause of the tannins, but one can see the potential (that's why I kept the taste at a 3, were it is a clear 2-2.5 currently). This is really what's going on here. The malt flavour is really good, and when the hops (which I wasn't a fan of in this beer) drop out with some age I feel this beer could be phenomenal at that time, so keep that in mind. But right now it's nothing special, C+, as I rated it.

09-30-2010 05:29:55 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of billshmeinke


2.6/5  rDev -35.5%

On tap at Blue Palms. Poured in a goblet.

Quarter inch off white head dies down to a bubbly layer of foam on top. Good retention and some nice lacing left behind.

I actually could barely smell anything at all from this beer. At first I thought it was just too cold, so I let it warm up and it still hardly smelled like anything at all. I thought I was going crazy for a minute, but I could smell food around me quite well (as well as the beer I had after it). I barely got the sligtest touch of dark fruit and caramel malt, and I think that was mostly what I thought I should smell.

Taste is a bit of dark fruit and some light cocoa. A bit of tobacco resin and pine hops. Lingering resin/smoke aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is light for such a big beer, low carbonation.

Kinda lame in general.

09-30-2010 04:29:35 | More by billshmeinke
Photo of Soonami


4.1/5  rDev +1.7%

This bottle of Great Divide Hibernation Ale is one that I have been aging since last spring, when I found it on discount for $1/12 oz bottle (I bought all that they had--5). I remember it having a solid bitterness and a good aged, raisin flavor. This bottle, from the beginning of the pour had a very pronounced cognac aroma. This carried over in the palate with a full age liquor flavor that was a complex combination of toasted malt, port, oak, and alcohol. Tasty and it was not difficult at all to finish a 12 oz bottle.

09-14-2010 01:56:31 | More by Soonami
Photo of biggred1


4/5  rDev -0.7%

Dark cherry with orange highlights when backlit and a fine tan head that leaves blobs of lace on the glass. Buttery toffee, tobacco and piney hop notes in the aroma. Rich roasty malt flavors with notes of buttered rum and spicy hop flavors. Full bodied and slightly sticky with bright carbonation.
A really nice brew anytime of the year.

08-01-2010 20:28:37 | More by biggred1
Photo of DaveJanssen


2.88/5  rDev -28.5%

Poured into a large snifter. Reviewed 6/25/2010. Bottled Nov 24 2009.

Ar: chocolate, alcohol, light roast/burn, toasty, lightly ashy, lightly oxidized, grainy

Ap: light dense off white head, deep brown, clear

T: strong toast, mild roast, freshly burnt bread, nutty, oaky/earthy, dry burnt end, balanced towards sweet, mild dark dry fruit, too toasty/grainy

M: medium body, dry burnt end with alcohol warmth

O: unique but unpleasant aggressive toast/burn

07-13-2010 05:16:00 | More by DaveJanssen
Photo of berpwillie


4/5  rDev -0.7%

pours a dark brown opaque color with good frothy tan head that recedes at a moderate rate. good lacing and soft carbonation. malty caramel nutty hints in the smell. taste is much the same with bread and molasses hints. very very light hop hints. medium body and a slightly creamy sticky texture. average flavor duration with a light sweet bitter finish. very smooth.

07-07-2010 20:24:31 | More by berpwillie
Hibernation Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 2,198 ratings.