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Abominable Winter Ale - Hopworks Urban Brewery

Abominable Winter AleAbominable Winter Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

220 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 220
Reviews: 101
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 9.78%


Brewed by:
Hopworks Urban Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Made with Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook hops and six organic malts.

70 IBU

(Beer added by: ElGordo on 12-24-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Abominable Winter Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 220 | Reviews: 101 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Seriously sparkly in the mouth. Yipes! Try a big gulp of this. Attractive dark coppery amber color in the Ciney snifter. Lovely warm malty taste to start, with the carbonation giving it a sharp edge right off. Something like roasted parsnips and winter squash with that slightly sweet vegetable flavor.

The hops are fairly subdued. Just a touch of hop flavors, though this finishes with a fair amount of bitterness. More woody and yam tasting roasted malt flavors. This is definitely on the sharp side, but if you like a fizzier beer it's quite pleasing. Well balanced, and a different sort of winter seasonal. From the 16 oz can purchased at Bottleworks in Seattle.

Serving type: can

01-10-2014 06:51:16 | More by mactrail
Photo of vkv822
vkv822

Oregon

3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into tulip pint.

Pours an amber-hued orange, with fair off white lacing. There is a light amount of carbonation slowly rising up.

The aroma and flavors are of strong and slightly juicy citric and spicy hops, with a pleasant caramel malt backing.

The mouthfeel is a fairly average medium body with decent carbonation.

I would really like to try more by this brewery as what I have had so far has been quite well done.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2010 07:03:25 | More by vkv822
Photo of artoolemomo
artoolemomo

Oregon

3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance- Pours up an okay amount of head which seems to have a little bit of retention. The head is an off-white/very light beige while the body is a dark amber which appears as a medium amber when held up to the light. The body is translucent. A good amount of lacing (mostly sheeting) has already been left behind.

Nose- It's no surprise that the aroma is warm and inviting with the big C's in use. Very heavy citrus- lots of orange and grapefruit (lesser notes of lemon). A bit of inviting mustiness mixed with nectar, floral scents, light honey and caramel. Tiny bits of matchstick. The first time I had this beer, I thought it was an IPA in the mold of Lagunitas Sucks. Swirling shows a lot of grapefruit and matchstick.

Taste- Shows a lot more pine and resin that I remember but it is well rounded. There is matchstick and grapefruit (and more pine and resin) on the finish as well. I remembered it to be juicier but that may have been because of the association I had made with it and Lagunitas Sucks. It is slightly juicy and the citrus (orange and lemon) aspects of the nose do make themselves known after a while. While it might not be that complex, the balance and integration are incredible. It doesn't hurt that the freshness lends everything a well rounded quality. Enough malt bill (mostly caramel) to counteract the (sometimes) rowdy hops. A good beer that I, unfortunately, remember as being better. Pretty much a red IPA when it's fresh but I can see it holding up even after the hops begin to degrade (at least, that's how I remember last year's). Some spiciness from the hops on the finish.

Mouthfeel- A little less than medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Normally, I would consider it too much but it works well with the vibrant hops and slight spice.

Drinkability- Very accessible for 70 IBUs. No heat. Reasonable price of 9-10 bucks for 4 pack of tall cans. I'm sure I'll get it again.

Overall- More than above average to good beer. My review might have been more glowing but I seem to have built this beer up in my mind. Definitely worth a try. Tastes great straight from the can as well.

Serving type: can

11-14-2013 03:31:30 | More by artoolemomo
Photo of hreb
hreb

Washington

3.89/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle served cold in pint glass. Beer pours a deep orange amber with nearly no head. Bonus points for the painted label on the bottle with Mr. Yeti. Slight citrus hop aroma.

Flavor is big on C-hops. This is the amber of IPAs. A little darker and there would be nothing between this and a CDA. At 7.3% it rationalizes the "winter ale" monicker, but the folks at Hopworks seem to be saying "It's Winter, you should be drinking hoppy beer. Just like every other time of the year."

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2013 01:56:31 | More by hreb
Photo of jellikit
jellikit

Washington

3.89/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: red. Slightly hazy. Medium, foamy head. Thick, persistent lacing.
S: slight malt. Low hop aroma (my can is 6 months old though). Sweet.
T: well balanced between sweet and dry. Bready. Malty. Alcohol (not too much). Medium bitterness at the end
M: medium carbonation. Medium body. Smooth.
O: this is a good imperial red ale. Will buy again.

Serving type: can

04-16-2014 03:09:57 | More by jellikit
Photo of HuskyinPDX
HuskyinPDX

Washington

3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a clear, almost amber colored orange with a nice light tan head that fades very slowly.

S - Hoppy pine, sweet malts, almost toffee like.

T - Sweet carmel and toffee, with a nice pine finish.

D - Perfect balance with a nice sweet finish.

O - I don't normally like the sweeter ipas, this one worked for me.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2011 06:53:18 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of demuzik
demuzik

Oregon

3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An enjoyable winter ale on the hoppy, fruity side - just what you need if you've OD'd on too many spiced/flavored warmers.

The mouthfeel is almost surprisingly thick for an under 8% beer... but the flavor is very well done. Balance of a hoppy fruit basket with plenty of malt undertones; totally piny yet fruity, spicy, and bready.

The color is brown and clarity is a little below average.

Worth at least a try during the colder months.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2012 00:40:45 | More by demuzik
Photo of EspressoGuy
EspressoGuy

British Columbia (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A; transparent, amber with orange hints
S: nice citrus rind, fresh, not over-powering; can't detect any maltiness
T: very well balanced, rich full fresh maltiness; hint of bitterness in the finish; no big flavours but a very pleasant richness. Not overly complex or developing.
M: full-bodied
O: a solid cohesive likeable flavour that makes me want another sip ... but wishes it developed into something more.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2013 02:42:21 | More by EspressoGuy
Photo of doughanson78
doughanson78

Washington

3.8/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Deep amber in color. Half finger off white head that immediately disappears and doesn't leave much for lacing.

S: Big citrus and floral hop mix. Lots of grapefruit, orange and tangerine. Big spiciness mixed in with the hops. Maybe the faintest touch of caramel malts. A faint dank weed aroma in the background.

T: Quick caramel sweetness upfront, immediately taken over by citrus and floral bitterness along with a big spiciness. Finishes very spicy.

M: Medium light bodied. Medium carbonation. Spicy.

O: I'd guess this is supposed to be a winter warmer also. Again not digging the style. The spiciness just isn't really for me. I can see it warming you up during a snow storm.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2011 02:26:36 | More by doughanson78
Photo of CalgaryFMC
CalgaryFMC

Alberta (Canada)

3.79/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle like the one pictured here into an American pub glass. A "winter ale" according to the label but no other style info is given. This brew is a dark orange amber to light brown color, with a pretty pungent grapefruit/orange rind aroma from C-hops ... Cool, was not expecting that degree of citrus and pine on the nose. There is a dark malt undercurrent as well, with butterscotch, faint molasses, and dark fruit. Nice aroma that recalls a red IPA albeit rather less aggressive than some of these beers. Taste closely mirrors the nose, featuring a decent blast of orange oil, grapefruit flesh and rind, hemp resin, and spicy menthol coupled with brown sugar, dried apricots, and raisins. Not particularly toasty or roasted. Somewhat thicker than many red ales I've had, coats the mouth, leaving an oily residue that causes the IBUs to accumulate a bit as you go ... Again, very nice. The alcohol is almost completely hidden. Low to moderate carbonation and does finish more crisp and clean than expected. I've had a few scrumptious red ales lately and this one holds its own.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2014 01:03:23 | More by CalgaryFMC
Photo of djeucalyptus
djeucalyptus

Oregon

3.75/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a cloudy orange gold hue with a thick creamy finger-thick head that slowly recedes to snowflake lacing dancing across the surface that leaves fair amounts of lace down the glass.

aroma is pungently fruity, citrusy, and herbal hops. Pine comes through strong with a bit of caramel malt sweetness.

Hops!!! bitter, bitter, and more bitter. a bit of citrus, a bit of pine, and some herbal notes, but they somehow all cancel eachother out into an almost clarified bitterness. caramel malt yields enough sweet malt to balance (relatively) and there are hints of spices, vanilla, and maple sugar.

mouth is clean and crisp. a touch on the thin side but the ample carbonation makes up for it. solid mouthfeel.

All in all, this is one hoppy beast. The hop profile isn't quite my favorite, as it's so close to pure bitterness that my palate almost gets blown into oblivion. not that it's a bad thing. I could only drink one of these, but it's certainly a solid brew that's definitely enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2010 17:48:12 | More by djeucalyptus
Photo of souvenirs
souvenirs

British Columbia (Canada)

3.73/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

650ml bottle, $5.99 + deposit at BC Liquor Store at 8th and Cambie, Vancouver.

A: warm golden brown with about a finger of head and good retention.
S: grapefruit and other citrus, plus a more general fruitiness. Some sweetness.
T: grapefruit, malt, moderate but not overwhelming bitterness.

Based on the name, I was expecting a winter warmer. I see the it's listed on here as an American amber / red ale, which is definitely more accurate. I think I need a beeradvocate.com app so I can check out beer info from the liquor store before I make my purchases! This wasn't bad, but it certainly wasn't what I wanted.

Would I get it again? I wouldn't seek it out, but I definitely wouldn't turn it down either.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2013 00:21:09 | More by souvenirs
Photo of coastiefish
coastiefish

Oregon

3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 poured into tulip

A- Great clear cherry ruby color. Light foamy head gathering mostly at the sides of the glass

S - sweet, fresh hops, (sweet) fruit and floral

T - Hops give off a nice floral perfume touch of spiciness too. The hop character makes this beer one of the edgier winter brews Ive ever tasted. The malt lends a little sweetness to round it out. The spice lingers a bit.

M - Very thin and clean, dries fairly quickly

D - I think the spice gives it meaning to be a winter brew, but I wish there was a bit more malt profile to give the body a touch more solidity.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2010 02:20:50 | More by coastiefish
Photo of Elimination
Elimination

Oregon

3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A copper amber red with a little bit of white head that vanishes quick

Smell is sweet hops, a tad spice and Carmel

Taste is a bit more bitter than the smell slight citrus a bit of spice to it and some fused alcohol

Mouthfeel is light and filled with a good carb drink is good but I wasn't to wowed by this.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2010 19:55:19 | More by Elimination
Photo of Reidrover
Reidrover

Oregon

3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle from Roth’s Vista Market, Salem. $3.50 Clear amber coloured ale with a nice frothy,thick,cream coloured head. Very nice hoppy aromas..slightly resinous and spruce like. The 6 malts certainlly appear in the taste..chocolaty,roasty and are matched by the resinous hopping..giving a very nice balanced yet complex flavour. Under carbonated and actually quite thin for such a subtantial ale..but OK An OK beer but i get the feeling it lacks something.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2011 18:26:38 | More by Reidrover
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to VoodooImpStout for sharing this one at jmgrub's birthday tasting.

Pours a clear dark orange with a foamy beige head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, and herbal hop aromas. Taste is much the same with a herbal hop flavor on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is drinkable but smells better than it tastes in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2013 03:06:24 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at HUB, Portland, OR

Poured a clear copper with a nice white head that receded to a patchy layer. I expected some sugar and spice in the aroma for a beer labeled as a winter ale, but instead got a blast of unexpected hops, more reminiscent of an APA or hoppy amber ale (which of course it is, I now know). Sweet pale malts were tasteable in the background, with citrus and pine hops taking the forefront, grassy with some light fruit tones. Medium mouthfeel, somewhat bitter in the aftertaste, a good-drinking beer overall, but I don't really get what exactly makes it a winter ale.

Serving type: on-tap

01-08-2012 16:57:23 | More by Rifugium
Photo of Chico1985
Chico1985

Massachusetts

3.48/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another abominable ale sent from ArchEnemyBrew, much thanks! Cool label on this one.

Pours an amber/orange with a bit of haze, off-white head retains nicely as a thick cap and leaves some lacing behind.

Faint smell, mostly malt and some hops. Toasty, some biscuit, spicy, earthy, piny hops. Really intense earthiness as it warms, kinda off-putting.

Taste is more enjoyable, there is some bigger hop flavor, but it's more about the malts, light bitterness. Hops are mostly spicy, herbal and piny with maybe some grapefruit. Malts match the nose, toasty and biscuity.

Fine mouthfeel, carbonation is medium-low, a bit of an oily feel, ABV sneaks up on you.

A good red ale, not a hop bomb as expected, a little forgettable.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2011 19:58:13 | More by Chico1985
Photo of beertunes
beertunes

Washington

3.38/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into straight pint glass. Poured a clean,clear golden red color with about1/4 inch of just off-white head that had low retention and moderate lacing.

The aroma was predominately piney hops with some malt sweetness in the background.On the tongue the also are the most noticeable aspect of this brew, with some malt foundation in the background.

The body was decent, perhaps a bit thinner than I would have liked. Drinkability was good, if this were on tap locally to me I'd have several while watching a game.

Overall, a good, solid brew that's worth a shot if you see it.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2010 23:47:00 | More by beertunes
Photo of harrymel
harrymel

Washington

3.33/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled: unk

A: Amber with under a finger of off-white foam which is centralized with a cap. Excellent clarity. Spotty lace.
S: Semi-sweet caramel and toffee malts with an English tone and some citric and herbal hops. Nice nose
T: Sweet, malty, hoppy and woody. The oxidation on the beer is a bit off putting, but oddly seems to match the beer. A little too bitter.
m: Medium bodied with moderate mouthfeel. Semi slick finish.
O: Not bad for a winter beer. Appreciate the reservation to use a bunch of herbs or spices. Nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2011 11:17:26 | More by harrymel
Photo of MsRif
MsRif

Pennsylvania

3.33/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on-tap at HUB in Portland, OR. Poured a clear amber color with a thin off-white head that left spotty lacing. Had an aroma of sweet malts, caramel and grains. Definitely reminiscent of a red ale...what threw me off was that this was supposedly a "winter ale." Nothing really "winter ale" about it IMO. Still an okay brew...I liked the sweetness of it and overall it was very sessionable.

Medium bodied with slight carbonation. Smooth. Makes more sense now that I realize this was actually a red ale and not a winter ale/winter warmer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-27-2011 23:51:15 | More by MsRif
Photo of maximum12
maximum12

Minnesota

3.33/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bfg75 for this bottle as an extra, which has since been resting in the fridge to slow it down. 22 oz. bottle split with my wife while watching my first Twins spring training game of the year. Yippee!

Pour is clear copperish red, & clean & clear as a whistle. Nose is nice floral, grapefruit, dash of sweetness, but one has to get out the shovel to dig much up.

Abominable Winter Ale could be renamed Abominable Biscuit Beer. Huge malty biscuitness jumps out of the woods & ambushes the palate; there's certainly plenty of hops, but the breadiness is ascendant. Hops kick in underneath the falling biscuit as bitter, mild grapefruit, but much more in the mouthfeel, which is very slick & neat. High point of the beer, though it's certainly easy to drink.

Eh. Just to the right of the middle of the road, this is a nice, inoffensive beer that's easy on the palate but without much in the way of character. Pretty good beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2013 01:54:18 | More by maximum12
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

3.18/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12/16/10

On tap at the brewery apposed next to Kentucky Christmas. Appears much lighter than its barrel brother, more on the golden side. Small head is quick to recede. Hops are redolent of pine and somewhat floral, reminds me a bit of a noble hop bouquet. A touch of mineral is evident. Malt provides bread and caramel and does well in providing balance. Flavor is bitter pine with a little caramel and an unexpected bready malt influence. Finish is bitter and dry with some alcohol and astringency. An earthy quality is detectable, as well as grassy and mineral notes. Not like any other winter beer I've tried. Medium body. Upper moderate carbonation. Dry, sticky mouthfeel with some astringency and warming. Overall, an odd array of flavors and I wouldn't jump to drink this again.

Serving type: on-tap

12-17-2010 19:08:04 | More by HopHead84
Photo of barleywinefiend
barleywinefiend

Washington

3.15/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a copper color with good carbonation and a dirty white head

S: Caramel, nice and sweet with some spice

T: Not what I was expecting. Is this a winter beer an amber or an amber serving as a winter beer? As a winter ale I was disappointed. Some spice at times, hops..what else ya got? Fruits and green leafs. Grains.

M: Well carbonated and sticky at times

D: Easily enough to drink but not a Winter Ale I would find myself going back to. When I think of Winter Ale

Serving type: on-tap

10-30-2010 11:50:51 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of beerandcycling88
beerandcycling88

Washington

3.15/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Collins Pub

A pours a copper color with a white head.

S some nice grapefruit notes.

T more bitter grapefruit and a bit of malt.

M mouthfeel was nothing special. I didn't notice anything particularly notable either way

Overall this isn't a bad beer. I think it might be mislabled was a red/amber as the bitterness and hop presence was more like an opaque. All and all I would drink this again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-24-2011 20:35:12 | More by beerandcycling88
Abominable Winter Ale from Hopworks Urban Brewery
91 out of 100 based on 220 ratings.