1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Sugar Plum Brown Ale - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Sugar Plum Brown AleSugar Plum Brown Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

237 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 237
Reviews: 59
rAvg: 3.46
pDev: 16.47%
Wants: 10
Gots: 25 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Cigar City Brewing's official celebration of Christmas. A rich-bodied brown ale forms the stage for holiday flavors which dance a festive ballet highlighted by pirouetting leaps of Christmas inspired spices. Cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, rose hips and chamomile compliment the subtle chocolate and light coffee notes of the malt and the addition of roasted carob and chicory complete the performance. Brewed once a year to celebrate the Christmas season. Pair with fresh cracked nuts, fruit cake and share with friends and family. Merry Christmas from the CCB family!

22 IBU

(Beer added by: tpd975 on 01-03-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 237 | Reviews: 59 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by BlackBearForge:
Photo of BlackBearForge


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Sugar Plum is a dark brown beer, nearly opaque with maroon hightlights around the edges. A light brown head builds quickly upon pouring and subsides to a thin covering with lots of lacing.

The aroma yields dark malts with orchard fruit notes and a touch of earthiness.

First sip yields some rather harsh spicing and leaves a rather flat and bitter aftertaste. Subsequent sips as it warms are quite a lot better and a traditional English brown base with added dark malts with dark ripe orchard fruits open up a bit. Strong hints of brown sugar, cloves, cinnamon and perhaps cardamon are present. Hop presence is low and earthy.

Mouthfeel is medium and a tad flat. Very smooth but a bit of creaminess would be welcome.

This beer really needs you to take your time with it especially if on first sip it doesn't seem all that welcoming. Sitting in the glass and warming does a world of good to open up the flavors.

12-25-2011 21:20:21 | More by BlackBearForge
More User Reviews:
Photo of ricksrealm


3/5  rDev -13.3%

01-18-2012 21:51:27 | More by ricksrealm
Photo of sicilian


2.75/5  rDev -20.5%

08-01-2014 20:15:02 | More by sicilian
Photo of mverity


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

11-15-2013 05:57:45 | More by mverity
Photo of iemailjack


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

01-07-2013 23:31:37 | More by iemailjack
Photo of TKEbeerman


4/5  rDev +15.6%

04-10-2012 23:51:24 | More by TKEbeerman
Photo of chinchill

South Carolina

3.71/5  rDev +7.2%

2012 12 oz. bottle served in a goblet.
Pours a dark and hazy brown with a small tan head that soon reduces to a durable ring.

The interesting, unusual and distinctive aroma is spicy and sweet. Hard to pick individual spices out of this complex mix, but cardamon and cinnamon seem clear. Solid roasted malt base with notes of figs and other dark fruits.

T: Holiday spices start to finish, but not to the degree suggested by the aroma, thankfully. Roasted malts are still evident, and lend some chocolate and faint coffee to the finish and aftertaste. Hints of ginger, caramel, toffee, chamomile, plum, dried plum, figs.

M: Medium in body, with good carbonation.
O: A rich and tasty holiday brown ale with a distinctive pallet of spices. Has great complexity and flavor dynamics. A bit sweet and approaches over-spiced, but then this is a winter holiday ale. Worth seeking out.

02-15-2013 23:48:46 | More by chinchill
Photo of dsauter


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

12-18-2012 23:42:10 | More by dsauter
Photo of tugg407


3/5  rDev -13.3%

01-06-2012 07:33:44 | More by tugg407
Photo of johnyb


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

02-05-2014 13:46:55 | More by johnyb
Photo of acurtis

New Jersey

2.75/5  rDev -20.5%

06-15-2014 16:11:39 | More by acurtis
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev +9.2%

Toasty and spicy, very smooth drinker with herbal tea, Ginger, Cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar. Brown head on brown body. Cookie. Filling, soothing after more bitter beers.
Ginger and spice in aroma. A cigar puff in the finish Xmasy brown ale, obtained through a mail order.

10-15-2012 03:45:53 | More by Sammy
Photo of DrewShal9


3.48/5  rDev +0.6%

Thanks wscaffe!
A: a purplish brown that's reminiscent of a barleywine with a white head that leaves a beautiful lace along the sides of the glass
S: ginger, cinnamon rolls, spices, and bready malt
T: intense and complex yet very tasty! Spices and sweet that finishes with plums.
M: somewhat light bodied with moderate amount of carbonation
O: very tasty brew that I want to revisit and try one aged!

02-10-2012 05:26:13 | More by DrewShal9
Photo of MADPolo


4/5  rDev +15.6%

12-19-2012 15:01:30 | More by MADPolo
Photo of socon67

New York

3.78/5  rDev +9.2%

Bottle shared for Mother's Day.

A - Brown pour with visible sediment in the glass. Some carbonation. A thin foam goes away quickly.

S - Smells of spice and fresh fruit. Some cinnamon and ginger jumped out to me.

T - Good blend of flavor that has substance. Spciy up front, then a concentrated sweetness of sugary fruit. Finish has a bit of tartness that seems to come from the yeasty sediment.

M - Good rinkability for a spicy\sweet beer. I easily had a second glass.

O - Perfect cocktail beer, which is what I did. Meant to be shared. A good novelty from CCB.

05-14-2012 00:41:23 | More by socon67
Photo of cjgator3


3.98/5  rDev +15%

750ml bottle

A- Poured into a Cigar City tulip glass. Pours a dark brown color with a light tan head with great lacing and retention.

S- The aroma is malty with chocolate and filled with holiday spices. Smells great!

T- The taste starts out dry and malty with some sweetness lingering in along with spices and some hops in the finish. 

M- The mouthfeel is light to medium bodies with a good amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, Sugar Plum is a solid holiday ale that I really enjoyed. 

12-24-2011 04:37:54 | More by cjgator3
Photo of Heatwave33


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Poured from a 750ml bottle to a Dogfish Head Signature glass.

Color: Deep murky amber with a khaki head.

Smell: Roasted malts, cinnamon and chocolate up front. Followed by coffee and spice.

Taste: Same as the aroma.

Mouthfeel: Mid-low carbonation, lightly coarse with a medium dryness on the palate.

Overall: A secent winter ale. My buddy and his girlfriend enjoyed it. Medium bodied with a decent balance. Don't know if I'll pick this up again. But definitely worth trying. Cheers.

03-02-2012 04:20:10 | More by Heatwave33
Photo of woodchip

North Carolina

3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

12-05-2013 13:27:08 | More by woodchip
Photo of Doppelbockulus


3.63/5  rDev +4.9%

Pours a coppery color with almost no head.

Smells strongly of the typical Christmas spices and a little malty.

Taste includes some vegetables, pickle skins, some hops, and at the finish there is a thing that reminds me of peanuts.

Mouthfeel is watery and leaves a slightly clingy film like tannin.

Pretty similar to the 2011 Anchor Our Special Ale.

02-18-2012 01:04:35 | More by Doppelbockulus
Photo of HamFon


3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

A: Hazy copper with a large fluffy beige head that produces lacing.

S: Lots of holiday spicing notes - cinnamon, cardamom, ginger. Also coffee and chocolate. Late floral notes.

T: Holiday spicing comes through - cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, and lots of caramel with coffee and chocolate. Woody chicory.

M: Medium full body with light astringency - possibly from the chicory.

O: A nice holiday beer with lots of spiced flavors going on. Not quite balanced, could use more of a malt backbone.

04-14-2012 15:28:20 | More by HamFon
Photo of hdelavega


3.7/5  rDev +6.9%

Nice dark brown with a thin white head. Good lacing.
Nose is sweet malt with a bit of sweet fruit in the back.
Sweet flavor, mimics the aroma. Realy nice. More plum coming thru as it warms up.
Mouthfeel presents a medium body with medium carbonation, realy nice.
Realy nice beer.

11-20-2011 00:23:58 | More by hdelavega
Photo of wspscott


3.63/5  rDev +4.9%

750ml bottle in Duvel tulip

A: Pours a hazy dark brown with a thin light-tan head that leaves a small amount of lace as it drops.
S: Very fruity with some definite spiciness.
T: The most prominent spice is ginger, but it is obvious that there are others in there, along with a hint of chocolate and a small bit of pepper in the background. Given the nose, I was expecting more malt driven fruitiness.
M: I don't know why, but I was expecting a "richer" beer, this comes across on the thin side. I think part of it is the mouth coating nature of all of the spices make it seem drier than it really is.
D: I like this a lot, but I think a little more residual sugars would really benefit the beer. I could see a little bit of Caramel 120 or Special B malt here. Overall, this is a very well made beer that I am happy to have tried, but it comes across a little too austere to be great or too make me want to purchase again.

02-02-2012 00:24:42 | More by wspscott
Photo of Denzo


4/5  rDev +15.6%

11-14-2013 03:01:29 | More by Denzo
Photo of bierguru


3.4/5  rDev -1.7%

Appearance: Pours a dark woody purple/brown with a 1 finger light tan head. Excellent lacing.

Smell: Sweet winter spices with ginger dominating. Cinnamon and nutmeg also come through nicely. Faint fruitiness that lingers on the backend

Taste: Spices dominate up front followed by typical malty brown ale flavors , a touch of hops and a bit of fruitiness at the finish. Aftertaste is mildly bitter like the skin of a plum.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: High drinkability. You could easily have a few of these over the course of an evening.

Overall: Very good beer overall. Was not expecting much from the negative reviews i was getting from friends, but i enjoyed it very much

02-09-2012 00:28:13 | More by bierguru
Photo of Jaycase


3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

01-02-2014 21:29:47 | More by Jaycase
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Sugar Plum Brown Ale from Cigar City Brewing
79 out of 100 based on 237 ratings.