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Vinter Varmer - Laurelwood Public House & Brewery

Not Rated.
Vinter VarmerVinter Varmer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

73 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 73
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 10.18%
Wants: 2
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Laurelwood Public House & Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.40% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RedDiamond on 02-12-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 73 | Reviews: 41
Reviews by Bfarr:
Photo of Bfarr
4.24/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nut brown, thin tan head with okay retention and no lacing. Sweet, nutty lager. Nutty and biscuit sweetness with a light hoppy linger. Light body, slick with a light bite.

An interesting take on a winter warmer. Light, smooth, and simple, this beer is balanced and has a nice meld of flavor. It stays clear and pleasurable throughout and a just a hint of warming. It seems a bit light for a winter warmer but it’s really quite substantial and enjoyable.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial nonic a deeply roasted chesnut color with a tight formed off white head atop.Roasted nuts,fruity malt,vanilla,and spicy/earthy hops in the nose,a rich and warming combination.Roasted nuts is a huge player on the palate with some brown sugar sweetness and caramel,a light smattering of leafy hops in the finish.This is a quaffing flavorful winter warmer,well rounded.

Photo of Jason
4.48/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz brown bomber w/ no freshness date.

The impressive looking head leaves a thick dusting of lace on the glass, dark brown color with garnet hues. Bready caramel maltiness with light figgy undertones, piney citric hop rounds out the nose. Incredibly smooth and creamy. Clean toasty malt goodness meets some caramel sweetness but then the hops lay down a balancing bitterness. The alcohol lends a mellow warmth. Toasted graininess is slightly nutty. Finishes clean and semi-dry.

This is a beer I could drink all night long, seriously great stuff here.

Photo of Metalmonk
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Love the label, something about a slurpin' squirrel just screams Northwest.

Impressive light-tan head is creamy and packed with variously-sized bubbles. Body is gorgeous with a toasty garnet glow. By the time I'm done admiring the color, the head has shrunk a little, leaving bits of lace as it goes.

Aroma is incredibly toasty, even slightly smoked, reminding of various porters. Hops are also shoving in looking for attention. There's a solid attitude to this aroma, it means business. Attractive at first, alluring after a minute or so, and then completely compelling. Toasted grains, root beer, earth, slight heat, burnt grape skins. Really nice.

Incredibly slick, creamy body delivers a huge dollop of flavor without needing to smack the living crap out of the tastebuds. While the hops are bright and zesty, the malts are where it's at. They're robust, toasty, lightly sweet and chocolatey. The way they work with the hops makes for one delicious beer--kudos to whoever came up with the recipe. Finish spreads out nicely over the tongue with a bubblegum sweetness and a hint of char and dessert spices, hops drying things up nicely.

This has the makings of a cult classic. Hopefully Laurelwood will continue to push this one. It's the best example of the style I've come across. Vonderful.

Thanks to msubulldog25 for this treat. (Can I get another?)

Photo of ElGordo
4.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from my home system into a pint glass. Body is a pretty amber-brown color with some reddish highlights when held up to the light. Light, creamy tan head slowly recedes to just a thin layer; the body is still, with a few very small bubbles floating up slowly.
Aroma of sweet malt with a touch of roast, along with notes of vanilla, oak, and a hint of fruity hops. Palate is malt-forward, with some pronounced roastiness, a little vanilla and a touch of holiday spice before the swallow. After the swallow, the hops come through full-bore, tempering the sweetness of the malt with a good dose of bitterness and a strong note of pine. Finish is a lingering hoppy bitterness with a nice warming touch from the alcohol.
Body is smooth but not really creamy, full but not bubbly. The neutral mouthfeel actually complements the winter warmer style, as it allows the flavors to meld with each other a bit better than in a more lively beer. I'm a big fan of this beer every year, and was very excited to be able to get a corny filled for my home. Grab it if you see it, it's a fine example of the winter warmer!

Photo of zaphodchak
2.84/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at Laurelwood in PDX. Part of a taster tray

Offwhite, seasonally appropriate snowflake-shaped tracing on the surface. Deep red-brown body.

No nose at all? Maybe malt? I'm fishing, here.

Little here as well. Some bitter, dry malt, some aggressive booze tang without the warmth.

Smooth feel, but kinda weak.

Muddled, hardly a warmer. Either there was a line issue, I wasn't in the right mood, or this is a boring beer.

Photo of scootpolute
4.77/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz brown bottle with a very cool label ... it's a squirl holding a pint glass with a mouthful of beer!

Appearance: dark brown/copper beer with a patchy cream off-white foam head that clings to the sides of the glass.

Smell: Very pronounced nutty & hop aromas, spicy with background sweet malts and a faint bready grain aroma.

Taste: Whoa! YUM!!! This is one bold, VERY tasty (well balanced) and outrageously-good beer! Mouthfeel is ultra-smooth, full and creamy with a nutty/malty thick full-body. The initial taste is an awesome nutty-hop flavor on the palate (which ironically works well)! A spicy, stinging and salty plethora of hops & malt nuances literally overwhelm the senses. Earth, leaf and grass flavours pull-thru, then are followed by an alcohol presence and spiciness. The malt in this beer is definately present but gets its ass fiercly kicked by the nutty-hops. Malt includes some toasted, slightly bready and light honey flavours with an even malt sweetness. It hardly balances the beer, but does keep it somewhat control. Beer finishes with residual hop spice and malt sweetness, which tends to linger for some time.

Notes: This is great. I'm 'SO' glad that Jason ('The BROS.') agrees that this is a good beer, since many of the other reviews differ. Good to know there's 'sum' good taste out 'they-ah!' At times there is 'almost' too much sweetness (from the nutty-hop flavor), but I would have to agree with Jason, I wouldn't have much trouble drinking this one all night (maybe I will?!)...:~)

Photo of bradleyp
4.02/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks again to the Bier Stein for having this beer.

A: Pours a lighter brown, but turns dark brown once in the glass. Light pillowy head, with little carbonation bubbles throughout.

S: Smell is very crisp and malty. Hard to distinguish the spices used, but I could pick up some coffee and cinnamon aroma.

T: The hops and malts blend very well together. Again, I could defintiely taste cinnamon in the after taste.

M: This is a smooth beer that goes down well. It went very good with my leftover Turkey sandwich.

D: I would really love to try this beer again. I didn't know tha Laurelwood was closed, but it seems like they are still making beer. I hope they continue to make this one because if I see it again, I will certainly purchase it again.

Photo of russpowell
4.11/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent red tinged mahogany with 2 fingers of sand colored head. Good head retention & above average lacing

S: Breadyness

T: Herbal & piney hops, breadyness & brown sugar up front. A bit of caramel, then more piney hops & some chocolate & oaky smokeyness, once warm. Finishes with a slight nuttyness, more piney hops & a bit more caramel, plus a just a smidge of earthy hops

MF: Medium/heavy bodied with low carbonation, skews a bit malty, but in the right direction for a winter warmer

Drinks pretty good, the chewyness slows you down a bit. I could pound these for a while

Photo of KTCamm
4.07/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. 1/6

Pours dark brown, flecks of light getting through. Fluffy 1/4 inch white foam sits on top. Malty caramel nose. Nutty and sweet. Colas too. Bready taste. A slight hop sits in the middle and then ebbs away. Candy sweet finish.

Photo of jellikit
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle.
Appearance: Amber with ruby hues. Medium, Light tan, foamy head. Nice lacing.
Smell: chocolate.
Taste: light to medium roasted barley. Chocolate. Mellow hop bitterness.
Mouthfeel: medium low carbonation. Medium body. Slightly sweet.
Overall: well balanced dark(er) beer. Will buy again.

Photo of CHILLINDYLAN
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep browned copper with amber highlights. Big frothy tan head. Thick organic mountains of lace.

Toasty caramel biscuit and some spiciness. Piney hops and a hint of citrus come through the malts.

Roasty coffee/choc and toasty caramel and bread. spicy herbal hops and pine, with a bit of citrus. plesant mellow bitterness with a pine and coffee aftertaste.

dry, sticky, med body, good carbonation, smooth and mellow.

very drinakble and tasty winter warmer. well balanced, but allows both hops and malts to shine.

consumed in Jan 2010.

Photo of Docer
3.86/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Filled my dusty shelf ridden Growler with this nice new one from some great brewmasters that bought up an old Italian fine dining restaurant 5 blocks away from the home I grew up in. Last beer that was in the Growler from their tap was their Workhorse IPA. I initially stopped bu there to fill the jug with their P-Town Pale... but it was only available down the street at their old joint, now the pizza joint. Still need to grab that...

Aside from the very beautiful servant... I ran into a master himself eating breakfast. He explained his likes for other wide varieties of beers. I liked that about him.

At first smelling the beer out of the growler.. I got a wiff of pickled olives... but I think that might have been a mix of the sanitizer they used to clean the Growler, and the time that thing sat around.

After that it was pure bliss. Great cola color with excellent lacing and mild head.

Many chocolate notes with a great bitter taste... not overpowering but there. Hides it's strength very well. Great carbonation.. not too bubbly.

Smell is mild, taste is great and smooth. A great competitor in the Winter Seasonal Dept. Go grab one on tap!

Photo of Spikester
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Clear dark brown with almost three fingers of tan head. Head has staying power and leaves very dense lace on the sides of the Nonic glass. Smell is generally a mocha scent but the beer is still too cold for the best aroma. Taste is big and well balanced for the style. Plenty of roasted malty chocolate coffee and hop bitterness equal to the task. Medium bodied and ample carbonation. Finish is French roast bitter lingering in the aftertaste.
Really one of the best of this style. Not too sweet and plenty of hop flavor.

Photo of suncrust
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A clear, dark, root beer brown with faint reddish hues. Rustic aura. Thin head with little lacing down the glass.

Smell: Light aromas of dark bread, yeast, wet grains, and cranberry muffins. Very, very light piney hop characters with a little lemon zing to them. A sticky, slightly spicy, slight nutty, sweet caramel rounds out the aroma.

Taste: Dark fruits, maple syrupy sweetness, and piney hops dominate the flavor. Mild darker spices, more hops, fig, toast, and a bit of booze to round it out. Piney hop finish.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, subtle characters and a light body. Hops create an interesting sweet pine flavor that lingers in the aftertaste. Almost like a hoppy maple syrup... really tasty. Very clean and a bit dry.

Overall: Not a very full bodied winter, but very smooth and drinkable. Hops are really pleasant and balance the sweet, spicy characters flawlessy. This almost drinks like a hopped up bock.

Photo of djeucalyptus
3.91/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich dark mahogany that verges somewhere between dark red oak and oily black. Brilliant clear ruby when held up to the light. A fluffy two-finger ochre-khaki head tops it off before very slowly fading leaving a beautiful collar and some impressive lacing.

aromas of bread, caramel, toffee, and a hint of earthy hops. A hint of spice? cardamom and cinnamon. All these aromas seem trapped in the brew... even as it warms, the aroma remains subdued.

Taste is a whole different story. Overwhelming complexity that leaves me attempting to identify where this one falls. It's earthy, sweet, fruity, hoppy, woody, and spicy all at once. It has Laurelwood's signature red malt and hop profiles providing the backbone, but this one's infinitely more complex. Sweet cherries, apples, pear, blackberries and toffee up front. Green and sweet-pine hops intermingle with fresh oak and birch. Some generous spicing just adds another level of depth.

Mouthfeel is strong enough to hold up to the flavors but definitely takes a back seat in intensity. Moderate carbonation fits the moderate feel, maybe a touch on the light side, although there's a touch of creamy syrup to keep it full.

Definitely a nice brew. Now that the glass is empty, I'm still trying to place this one. Definitely a winter warmer with some red in it, the complexity of the hops takes it to another level. It's an impressive brew and definitely worth seeking out, amazing on tap and nice to have the option of a bottle.

Photo of RedBrewer83
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into tulip...

A: Pours a dark brown hue with a nice three finger head of foam, slightly tan in color, good retention and nice lacing.

S: Smells of fresh bread dough, hints of spices and faint sweet malt.

T: Rich bready malt, hints of spice and a crisp floral hop presence. Fairly dry on the finish, lingering bitterness left from the hops.

M: Smooth medium body, active carbonation, clean dry finish.

D: Pretty drinkable, the flavors aren't as balanced as they should be but overall a solid offering.

Photo of Zorro
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Light brown color with a medium tan colored head.

Scents of caramel and aromatic wood, not quite a cedar chest scent though. Can't say it smells of pine either.

Tastes malty with a faint cedar wood flavor. Faint cinnamon and mildly bitter.

Full mouthfeel.

Overall this is OK but needs more spice.

Photo of Ghenna
3.46/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a ruddy brown with a latte coloured 1.5 finger head. Low retention.

Smells initially of pine hops, spice, and a bit malty.

Flavors of hops and roasted malts make themselves immediately apparent. Truthfully, I think there is more in the way of flavor there, but the hops (not overbearing, mind you) are obscuring them a bit.

Mouthfeel isn't heavy- typical for your average red, maybe with a slight bit more body.

Overall this isn't too bad a brew, though not exceptional either. It is a nice example of a red.

Photo of Reidrover
3.63/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz from "Lamb's Thriftway" Wilsonville, OR. $5.49 Pours a handsome chesnut brown with some dark red hints and a gorgeous thick tan head. Very malty aroma to this one, caramel,cereal and bread dominate Taste is also malt driven..semi-bitter malts..dark chocolate, french Roast Coffee and some hazelnut.Some candysugar sweetness then finished off by a deep hop bitterness..thats lasts. Nice mouthfeel, not to shabby. Overall a nice malty winter beer.

Photo of constantine_272
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: Dark reddish brown. Not as blackish as others. Biscuit light brown foam that gave me low retention. Medium carbonation that seemed to secede quickly. I like the red tint but would have liked a bit more carbonation.

S: Toasted wheat bread. Sun flower seeds. Sweet malts with caramel and candied walnuts. Smooth except for the mild alkaline scent from the alcohol at the finish of the nose.

T: A delicious milder winter warmer. Starts off of rich wet cedar and sweet caramel, chestnut and a hint of chocolate. Pine resin and sap blends in for a mild citrus and crisp feel with hints of warmth with cinnamon. Very crisp finish with a mild almond aftertaste. The roasted on the grain is very restrained leaving a very drinkable beer.

M: Surprisingly smooth, light, crisp and unusually thin for the style. Somewhat long nutty aftertaste, but only a mild one.

O: I like the winter beers but usually feel they're too big for their own good; I can never have more than one or two. This beer is quite unusual in that it interprets a lot of the same flavors, but remains smoother, lighter and much more drinkable. This beer gets extra points for developing a lot of my favorite flavors in a smooth package.

Photo of coastiefish
3.21/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 bomber shared with katelovesbeer.
oct. 2011 release

A- darker than what I recall from last year. nice tan dense thin layer of head covering a dense dark brown sultry bodied brew.

S - Faint nose, bit of caramel, bread, spice (nutmeg, all spice) sweet and tiny bit nutty

T - Lighter taste impact than I recall from last year. The taste lacks for me a bit. Somewhat disappointing, but a little surprising as well. Nutty, roasted malts. This isn't as hopped filled as some claim in their reviews, however some are more sensitive to a hop presence. The hops are present enough to round out the beer, and leave a slight bitter lingering, but well rounded out with the caramel, nutty malt.

M - Love the mouthfeel. Good body- not big- but filling. Subtle carbonation.

O - Im slightly disappointed that this brew isnt a little bit bigger than it is. Its easy, its drinkable, try it. I may give it one more go this season, but there are so many other seasonals that are worth the time.

Photo of jdhilt
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a light tan one finger head that fades slowly, leaving some lace. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Cloudy amber color. Nose is sweet spicy hops. Flavor is balanced with hints of caramel and slight bitter finish. 22oz bottle gift from Haggens Beaverton, OR.

Photo of MadeInOregon
4.56/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'd been saving a 22oz. bottle of this beer since December when I picked it up. Last weekend I cracked it open...

In my stemless wine glass this brew was a very dark bronze color. It had a creamy white head and initially smelled extremely chocolatey and sweet. After letting it settle into the glass a little more a faint yeast and hop smell rose up, but the overall aroma was almost entirely that of dark chocolate. Pretty amazing smell for winter warmer, I think.

Like the smell, the taste of this beer is dominated by bitter chocolate. It is sweet and caramel tasting, but chocolate is the main flavor. The foretaste is chocolate, the aftertaste is chocolate. This beer tastes great and is definitely the sweetest warmer I've come across.

Adding to the great taste is a very full and rich body. Also unique among the warmers I've had. Good drinkin!

CONS: While this beer is great, I found it to be less than "warming." I know it's only 6.4% alcohol (as indicated on the label) so I shouldn't have expected to be punched in the face, but how can it be called a "warmer" if it doesn't "warm"? There was a little warming going on in the mouth and stomach but not any more than if this were an IPA. That was disappointing to me. Though perhaps what is disappointing to me is really just the vagueness of this style. I mean, don't these brews usually just taste like someone mixed together half a porter and half an IPA and bottled it under the name "winter warmer"? Seriously, think about it. I think I'm done with this style for a while.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.59/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Portland airport. Ahhh, this one is not retired guys.

A - Served a medium to dark from with a foamy ligt tan head. Great retention and lots of lacing.

S - Pretty nutty and roasted coffees.

T - Again nutty and lots of roasted malts. Finishes like a bitter coffee.

D - Great carbonation, very lively.
Medium body.

O - Nice beer. Liked this guys. Light drinker with a nice roasted finish.

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Vinter Varmer from Laurelwood Public House & Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 73 ratings.