Redhook Winterhook - Redhook Ale Brewery

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Redhook WinterhookRedhook Winterhook

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460 Reviews

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Reviews: 460
Hads: 890
Avg: 3.57
pDev: 18.49%
Wants: 22
Gots: 57 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Redhook Ale Brewery visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 10-08-2003

Regardless of whether you spend your winter months on the slopes, shoveling your driveway or just hiding out, Redhook Winterhook is a great way to chase off the winter chill. This year will be our 27th consecutive release of Winterhook. The recipe changes slightly every winter because nobody likes getting the exact same Holiday present year after year. Redhook’s 27th brew of Winterhook has roasted chocolate notes that smooth out the quick, spicy hop finish. The rich body and nutty, malty backbone make this winter ale slighty naughty and very nice.

38 IBU
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Reviews: 460 | Hads: 890
Photo of Goregazm
4.06/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


Appearance: Pours a nice, reddish-copper color. Clean, but not transparent. Has a decent, light tan head which goes down somewhat rapidly and leaves a good amount of foamy lacing on the glass.

Smell: Very strong on the nose, you can smell it as soon as you pop off the cap. Has a floral, hoppy smell, with some caramel and malt. Grains are in there as well. Wasn't bad, but not as good as the...

Taste: Nummy!!! This beer has a warm, toasty taste that you can literally feel going down. Tastes like buttered bread with a nice malt and some bitter hops. More sweet then bitter, with a slight detection of fruit. Very, very good.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and slightly thick, with a litte carbonation that tingles on the tongue. Doesn't lose its creamy feel on the palate after being in your mouth for a few seconds. The aftertaste is not a far cry from the taste itself, just a bit more suttle.

Drinkability: This is a great beer, and one of the best that Redhook has to offer. This is ideal to sip on a cold, winter night. Whether sitting in front of the fireplace or under a blanket watching a movie, this is a brew that matches up perfectly. If you're not a big
fan of the winter season, this is a damn good reason to look forward to it.

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Photo of hustlesworth
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- hazy copper amber with a decent off white head and a good amount of lace.

S- mild aroma of sweet caramel malts and earthy English hops. Raisin, date, prune, toffee, and sherry.

T- well balanced flavor, toasty, woodsy and sweet with understated bitterness. Fruity tartness comes in with red grape, plum, raisin, and berries. Finishes with an earthy bitterness and a bit chocolatey.

MF- nicely full feel with proper carbonation. Lots of grain went into this one. Creamy and rich.

D- surprisingly good from an underestimated brewery. Anheuser Busch has the rights to this one around here, and thanks to my sales rep Ty for the sample.

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Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Caramel-brown / apple-red transparent color with a decent off-white head

S- Spicy smell on top of caramel malt flavor

T- Taste is like the smell but hops become noticeable and really enhance the brew

M- Feel is good. Medium bodied and well-carbonated

D- Drinks fine for the style

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Photo of thespaceman
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: A nice deep copper color, minimal clarity, with a generous sized head and beautiful lacing, very sticky.

Smell: Nice earthy, grassy hops combined with sweet fruit florals, grapefruit twang is present, a decent smelling winter brew.

Taste: Great spices combined with those fruity hops make this a treat. Nutmeg, caramel, pumpkin spice, all pop out big here, as well as the grapefruit and citrus feel in the nose. This one would taste great with thanksgiving dinner!

Mouthfeel: Slight creaminess although a bit thin for a winter beer, yet it's carbonation and good hop balance make up for it. Just right on the palette.

Drinkability: For my first winter brew of 2008, I was pretty impressed. This is one is tasty and rather easy to gulp down, definetley a sessionable beer for those holiday parties.

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Photo of Bierman9
4.03/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Bier has a clear, dark copper/chestnut color. Head is tan and creamy, lasts well, and leaves excellent lacing. Body bordered on medium, and it felt fairly smooth on the tongue. Plenty of hops in the nose, with a touch of sweetness as well. Flavor starts a bit malty, with a hint of sweetness, caramel and spiciness. It is soon followed by plenty of hops, west-coast style, which stick nicely on the palate. Nice Bier!

overall: 4.1
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | mouthfeel: 4 | drinkability: 4


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Photo of oldirtycaffrey
4.03/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep, dark amber with 1/2 inch foamy head that stays throughout. A LOT of lacing left along the glass as you finish. Sweet, malty, robust aroma -- the taste follows suit. Good amount of carbonation. For a 6.0% ABV, very easy to drink. Perfect winter warmer.

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Photo of bditty187
4.02/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Auburn-bronze hue, clear and brilliant, the color is very appealing. Unfortunately the head developed poorly, there was little more than dishwater bubbles that covered half of the bare beer. A very small amount of disorganized specks of lace dotted the glass as I drank it. Immediately the nose tells me two things, this is hoppy and this is not the Winterhook of last year(s). I’m rather pleased with the pine aromas, undercurrents of floral, and distant hints of maltiness at the back. The bouquet has a couple layers of depth and a distinct invitation to quaff. The palate is bitter upfront, from the piney hops, a smidge of floral follows. The maltiness is a little lacking and ordinary, traces of caramel but not a lot of sweetness. A little ale fruitiness is interwoven. The finish is mildly hoppy with a pleasant piney aftertaste, some direct bitterness. Unexpectedly “more-ish” and surprisingly tasty… especially considering Redhook does not ‘wow’ me. I even got hop burps! Medium in body, a touch thin, more malt would help. The carbonation is a little low but tolerable, very drinkable and pleasant to quaff as well. The abv is “low” enough to have a few at a time. If Redhook sticks with this recipe then the new and improved Winterhook will be a staple in my refrigerator when winter rolls around. Six-packs are too damn cheap for you not to try; I got mine for $5.50 in Omaha.

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Photo of PatrickJR
4.02/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Clear copper colored, with a finger of beige/tan head. Retention is somewhat short, some lacing is left behind.

S - Moderate caramel aroma. Nutty and roasted aromas come through also. Surprisingly there is a noticable piney hop presence.

T - Sweet malt tasting of dark bread and mild fruit and nuts provides the backbone. Mid palate the sweetness begins to subside a bit and a mild bitterness enters. Earthy and piney hop flavors make themselves known with a touch of alcohol and fruitiness in the finish.

M - Medium bodied with a moderate to high carbonation. Just a smidge too prickly.

D - A great sessioner for the season. I'm not sure if "winter warmer" is the best style for this beer to be listed under, but either way it's a great, solid beer. Nothing huge or bold, but simple and harmonious.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.02/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance –The beer pours a mahogany-amber color with a big two finger off white head. The head has a good level of retention, fading to leave only a light level of lacing.

Smell – The aroma is bready and sweet of toffee. These aromas are mixed with some nutty and pine aromas, balancing out the sweet and malty.

Taste – The taste starts out with a bready and toffee taste. A light citrus and dark fruit flavors are also upfront with a spiced flavor of cinnamon and nutmeg quickly after coming to the tongue. Nutty and some bitter pine flavors then come to the tongue. The mix of these flavors takes the taste to its end where a bready and lightly bittered, but still overall caramel and toffee sweet, flavor are left on the tongue.

Mouthfeel –The body of the beer is on the medium to creamier side with a carbonation level that is rather average Overall the body was very nice for accentuating the frit and spice flavors of the brew, while the carbonation maintained an exciting and very drinkable feel for the brew.

Overall – A nice tasty, slightly sweeter, yet still roasty and spiced holiday brew. It has a nice feel and price, which when mixed with the good taste make for a brew to try and one to possibly go back to again and again.

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Photo of patobandito
4.02/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer pours a lovely dark copper color with a small head that leaves little lace. Smells malty with spice, like a winter warmer should Tastes the same. Strong malt flavor followed by the spices. But not too spiced like the Widmer Brrr....Winterhook is balanced perfectly. Very good beer, albeit a bit on the thin side. An easy drinking beer. Very good stuff.

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Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More thanks to JJFoodie for throwing this one in with a trade.

The color is a bright, clear orange-amber. An off-white head is somewhat thick and tight and remains steadily firm for some time. Some patchy lacing is left behind initially.
There's a firm malt aroma with a somewhat less but still substantial hops presence. There's a caramel from the malt as well as a leafy, flowery aroma from the hops and rather than the array of spices sometimes found in a brew such as this, just a gentle peppery spice and maybe a hint of something warmer.
The taste follows suit, with the malt and hops in harmony, hops gently giving way for the maltier base to come up a bit stronger. An herbal, flowery flavor from the hops compliments the sturdy caramel of the malt and the pepper lingers along with a warmer spice. It's a fairly simple, straightforward flavor, though well balanced and just complex enough to make it interesting.
The body is medium, a good balance of smooth and crisp. It's clean and just thick enough to have a little character.
This is a good one for winter if you're not into overly spiced brews, and a good median between that type and the Christmas ales that are, in fact, IPAs.

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Photo of secondtooth
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a gold-amber with a mountain of small-bubbled foam into my ale glass.
Nose is caramel-biscuity, with hints of spice (clove?).
Taste is strong, very bread-like with a little hint of fruit and a slightly bitter, alcohol finish.
Definitely a solid beer.
Not terribly unique or memorable, but certainly drinkable, and well-worthy of the bargain price (got it for $4.69/6-pack at a local liquor shop).

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Photo of echoes
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a glass.

A: Pours a very thick head with lots of carbonation. Head dissipates very slowly and leaves some lacing. Color of beer is dark amber with little carbonation.

S: Malt/hops, citrus, caramel smell. Smell is noticeable, not great, but not bad.

T: Hops, citrus, caramel, and slight chocolate flavor. Flavors blend well, well enough that the chocolate is barely detectable (to me). A little bitter (but not bad) for a supposed ale.

M: Slightly thick but smooth as well as slightly syrupy.

D: Nothing about it would put me off from another, but then again the flavor and everything else isn't necessarily enough to make want another, if that isn't contradictory.

Fits the winter warmer style nicely. It is certainly distinct though. I like it, but compared to the other winter warmer I've had (Alaskan Winter Ale/Warmer) I prefer the latter.
Overall decent for a winter warmer. Would drink it again but wouldn't necessarily buy it again.

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Photo of gonzo000
4/5  rDev +12%

Nice brown color. Not overly spiced for a winter. Solid beer. One inch head lasts though out the beer. Would compare this to a straight brown beer.

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Photo of Clydesdale
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep bronze color with good clarity and a big, creamy white head with good retention. Lacing is impressive.

S: A big whiff of piney/floral hops, plus some subdued caramel and perhaps a bit of honey and spice.

T: Again, piney and floral hops dominate the palate with a nice flavor and a touch of bitterness. Some caramel malt to provide balance, along with a vague, sweet spiced nature. There's an almost dusty, yeasty or bready nature to it as well.

M: Fairly creamy and medium bodied, with a somewhat dry finish. There is a somewhat resiny feel on the tongue after each sip.

D: This is a very nice winter offering. An assertive hop profile balanced fairly well with some malts and spices. I'd drink this again, and it's a good option for the price ($6.99/six).

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Photo of Reidrover
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok wife took me out to "The Outback" Steakhouse tonight for me birthday..they had not much of intrest on tap ( Newcastle Brown and Black Butte being the best) I tried this new keg of Winterhook..what the heck..might as well. Came in the 22 oz mug.
Served slightly too cold , despite me asking for a "slightly" chilled let it stand a while.
Actually afer the chill haze was gone, its quite a good looking beer ,light chocolaty brown with garnet accents..lovelly coffeen'creme coloured head.
Good malty aroma with wine like smell of alcohol.
Pretty nice taste , malty smooth, chocolate , liquorice then it gets bitter with noticable alcohol warming in the throat.
Nice and smooth on the palate.
A quite enjoyable brew with my Prime Rib..and New York Cheescake to finish!
Tastes though it was stronger than 5.58..but the waitress had no idea!

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Photo of GClarkage
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12/08/04- Purchased at Piazza's Market in San Mateo, CA

Presentation- Poured into my Englander pint glass. 12 oz bottle with born on date of 11/02/04.

Appearance- Pours a dark amber color, 1/4-1/2 inch brownish head and above average lacing.

Smell- Mostly sweet hops and a tad of spices. Maybe a little medicinal or bubble gum scent.

Taste- Hmmm, don't taste a whole bunch of spices. Pretty much tastes like a decent IPA. Maybe a little clove or spices mixed in, but for the most part some pine and fruity hops. Towards the end I may have picked up some kind of roasted malt flavor also.

Mouthfeel- Decent carbonation, not thick at all. Goes down nicely.

Drinkability- Wouldn't choose this as a winter warmer, as it really didn't warm me up, but as an IPA with a tad bit of spices makes it interesting. Definite decent beer worth a try.

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Photo of oelergud
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice pour and cascading head that settles after a while. Great lace and retention. Body is a clear amber/red topped with a tan head.
Grass and hops up front in the nose with undertones of slightly spiced molasses, well balanced. Warming malt sensation.
Burnt hay and bitter citrus on the palate. Malts do not really come forth until the aftertaste hits, which is a pleasant lingering burnt hoppiness mellowing out to molasses and spiced slight brown sugar.
Good mouthfeel and coating. Pretty good drinkability, ABV will get to you which is proper for a winter warmer.


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Photo of demuzik
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a deep, rich amber - poured from a 12oz bottle with a half inch head, lacing was solid throughout the sipping process.

Hop-heavy on the aroma; piney, slightly spicy hop aroma. Toasty, roasty aromas from the malt.

The taste is quite enjoyable; a bit stark, hops taste like Chinook and other things piney - this one reminds me like a tamed down "Big Foot" from Sierra Nevada. Nice caramel undertones to carry the heavy hopping on this one.

Mouthfeel is done well; a lot of malt and hop punch without weighing the tongue down too much in syrupy weightiness - the weight is just about right.

Overall - worth a try - at least worth getting a 6er - if you like hoppy, big flavored beers.

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Photo of CBFanWish
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber, almost copper in color with a frothy head and a nice lace effect. The smell is frity, kind of citrusy, Very aromatic hops were used in the making of this beer. I also get a fruity taste. Very hoppy and malted nicely. I really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of ALESwhatCURESya
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been trying the winterhook for the last couple of years and I have always been pretty impressed besides the fact that Redhook is often knocked for being a shitty craft brewery. This year (2004) is very similar to SN Celebration. They went a little more hoppy this year and steered away from the heavy malt and spices. It is a red copper color wiht a very nice head and lacing. The aroma had a small amount of vanilla and nutmeg, but was mostly full of hops. There was a nice fresh hopness to this beer and it was very satisfying. This may be one of the best overlooked and unappreciated winter brews out this year.

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Photo of Wetpaperbag
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Nice red copper color. The head was only a finger width and the head loves to cling to the side of the glass in chunky white foam.

S- This smells sweet, and a bit more on the hoppy side of a winter warmer. Must be a West Coast classic for sure. Sweet caramel and honey with some great spice mixed in. Great smelling Winter Warmer.

T- There is a nice hop taste for sure, and it is always there to play nice. But there is a real nice caramel malt profile that is the star. This is a nice well rounded and balanced American West Coast take on a winter warmer. Nice well rounded beer.

M- This feels good in the mouth, very nice feel.

D- Yes this is very drinkable, I'm glad I got this fresh as well. Its a nice beer.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz brown pry off, date stamped 12/02/08

Appearance: Beautiful dark copper-colored brew with lazy carbonation and a thick sticky dark ivory head with good retention and some nice patchy lacing

Smell: Very nice balance between earthy, pungent hops and sweet toasted biscuit and caramel notes. Simple, upfront, and well-defined aromas are quite pleasing.

Taste: Very much in keeping with the aromas. The first thing that really hits you is the hops (even after at least four months in the bottle this is still quite fresh)...there are nice strong hop flavors and a light/medium bitterness, offset by significant sweet caramel. I first had this a few winters ago (and this is only my second sampling); it reminded me then of my time in Yorkshire, it does the same thing now.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and quite smooth

Drinkability: High, easy to knock back several of these comfortably on a winter night

Conclusion: Good, solid winter warmer, brewed in the English tradition; nice balance of malt and hops; this is unique enough to stand on its own, yet approachable for those just getting into craft beer. I'm going to make it a point to get this into my winter rotation much more regularly!

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Photo of Fatduck
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a deep copper, mahogany color with a small but fluffy white head. It smells and tastes like a extra strength English bitter. A good thing on a cold day I guess. Creamy smooth mouth, a little carbonation, but light, very drinkable, dangerously so.

From the "extra" seasonal offering from the Redhook sampler pack I am very pleased. Its a great beer.

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Photo of mynie
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Kind of light for the style, a wonderful shimmering red with a retentive white head and bubbles sparkling clear like champagne.

Smells of surprising hops against traditional chocolately warmer malt, no hint of alcohol. West coast hops, cascade, I think. Lightly floral and above average bitterness.

Starts out with the same mild hop kick of an average APA, but that moves quickly into the rounded, sweet malt of a warmer and ends on a sweet, bready note. No real sign of yeast or alcohol.

Definetely a warmer, but probably the hoppiest warmer I've ever had. This isn't to say that it's hoppy on a grand scale, just that warmers usually don't have any hop presence at all. This is nice change of pace, and that fact that it's free of the usually burny warmer aftertaste (which often contrasts poorly against sweet malts), is a good thing.

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Redhook Winterhook from Redhook Ale Brewery
81 out of 100 based on 460 ratings.