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Christmas Ale - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Christmas AleChristmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

85 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 85
Reviews: 25
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 12.43%
Wants: 3
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: NeroFiddled on 11-24-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 85 | Reviews: 25 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of WilliamPhilaPa
4.85/5  rDev +28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a clear copperish color, with a thin off-white head that holds well/leaves a good lace. The aroma is a combination of bread/biscuity malt, clove, spices and hints of cinnamon. The same on the palate with some spices, ginger bread, hints of cinnamon, nutmeg, emm, balanced flavor and tasty. Emm this stuff is so good. Nice recommendation Nero.

WilliamPhilaPa, Dec 14, 2002
Photo of robdip9
4.75/5  rDev +25.7%

robdip9, Jan 23, 2014
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.7/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I haven't had a beer that's really turned my head in a while, but this is one of them. The body is a clear auburn topped by a thin, creamy ivory head that holds quite well and leaves some lace throughout the glass. The aroma entices you with a combination of lightly sweet biscuity malt & gentle spices (cinnamon & ginger) that's reminiscent of gingerbread. The body is medium with a very fine & moderate carbonation that leaves it smooth & creamy in the mouth. The flavor is very similar to the aroma, starting with a soft biscuity malt that reveals some sweeter caramel/toffee and light chocolatey notes as it warms and the mild spices start to appear. But the true spice character appears just as you swallow, with a vast array of flavors bursting forth including cinnamon, ginger, all-spice, nutmeg and clove. This is where the beer offers some complexity - certain spices will appear more clearly to you with each further sip. The spices continue to swirl about the mouth in a gently lingering aftertaste that generally dries with some clove character. Hop bitterness is well-heeled to allow the spice to do its job. Amazingly well-done for such a difficult style. The spice is fresh and vibrant, yet delicate. Restrained balance is obvious, and the way that the spice flavors play-off of the malt character is exquisite. An exceptional holiday treat. I may have to find myself some holiday shopping to do in Phoenixville so that I can get another growler before it's all gone! Absolutely worth seeking out.

NeroFiddled, Nov 24, 2002
Photo of jjd315
4.5/5  rDev +19%

jjd315, Nov 19, 2012
Photo of Scoats
4.4/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This spiced holiday beer is a favorite of patrons at The Grey Lodge Pub, and with good reason. It's a palish ale with holiday spices such as cinnamin and nutmeg. The interesting thing I noticed last night is that the spices hit you exactly where the hop end taste is in most beers.

Scoats, Nov 26, 2002
Photo of oberon
4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another great offering from Sly Fox pours a deep red with some copper tints with a real nice fluffy head that leaves some nice lacing on its way down,aroma is of allspice and cinnamon with some light metallic hints.A real fine tasting brew cinnamon is the dominant taste I get with some light allspice notes a nice malty/bready backbone to makes it very appetizing.Gotta growler of it and now enjoying at home.

oberon, Dec 23, 2003
Photo of bigeyedfish89
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%

bigeyedfish89, Dec 20, 2013
Photo of Mcballz13
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%

Mcballz13, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of Scary_Version
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%

Scary_Version, Dec 05, 2013
Photo of jungj3
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%

jungj3, Dec 30, 2013
Photo of RobertColianni
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%

RobertColianni, Feb 20, 2013
Photo of GeoffFromSJ
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a very good spiced beer. I can only describe it as a pumpkin ale with less nutmeg, leaving you with cloves. Some other spices I cannot make out. Let's be honest. You can't taste the pumpkin in pumpkin ales. I feel somewhat weird rating it so highly, because I have had better beers which I have rated lower. But for what it is trying to be, I believe it deserves the rating. It smells very good. It looks good. It tastes good. It was very smooth to drink.

GeoffFromSJ, Dec 27, 2003
Photo of Stunner97
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2012 edition seems they change every year

Appearance- amber red with thick tan foamy head,

Smell- really getting alot of all those holiday spices, cinnamon ginger and nutmeg, certainly smells like xmas

Taste- this beer is very true to what it claims to be which is a christmas ale, you just taste all those afformentioned spices so much, tons and tons of cinnamin and ginger all day, one could argue maybe its slightly overspiced but i think for the style its where it should be your not blindly searching for the flavors,

Mouthfeel- medium bodied yet very smooth and creamy, nice feel with low carbonation

Drinkability/overall- this beer is not really one i probably would say is extremely drinkable only in that the spice is so strong but i would say its very enjoyable and I did like it, its one i think I would visit again ocassionally

Stunner97, Nov 16, 2012
Photo of goindownsouth
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at my first venture to Sly Fox - Royersford on 01.15.05.

While I was initially skeptical towards trying this one, I was turned in a hurry. Impeccible in its copper appearance with just a faint hint of bubbles, this ine had me scratching my head from word "go." I took in hints of clove, cinnamon and a faint trace of mulling spices...rather warming, actually. The initial sip was hardly what I would have expected...hardly harsh, and very smooth. One of, if not the most drinkable of the Christmas brews I have sampled and, if nothing else, this Ale in particular will get me to re-visit this style again, going forward.

goindownsouth, Jan 16, 2005
Photo of Boto
4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one pours a copper color with just a hint of ruby. There was a fairly decent head, with some lacing. Good aroma of mulled spices. There is a medium to slightly full malt body, with a strong, but not overdone taste of the spices. This was very good!

Boto, Dec 29, 2003
Photo of PatDreadful
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into my Sam Adams Snowflake Pint.

Appearance: A very nice copper color with an ENORMOUS head that rises up to almost four fingers. Very nice job.

Smell: Strong yeast aroma with overwhelming spice notes. Ginger, plums, nutmeg and cloves dominate the nose as one is instantly transported to a Christmas kitchen filled with cookies and and fig pudding. Very welcoming!

Taste: Follows the nose with the addition some black licorice notes lingering in the background. There is a very strong maltiness that serves as a wonderful canvas for all of these flavors. The spice is a tad bit harsh and would benefit from some age.

Mouthfeel: This is where the this beer really shines. A milky body that is very enjoyable. Perfect for sipping by the tree.

PatDreadful, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of Foxman
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It came to me a lightly hazy ruby brown, with a finger of light tan head that settled in its own time to a thin frothy bed. Lacing was plentiful and graceful.

The aroma carried an initial brace of malt, sweet and with caramel, before there arrived a busy mix of banana, toasted nuts, and pie spice, notable for cinnamon, clove, mace, allspice, and nutmeg.

Upon sipping, the malt again came first, sweet with caramel and light berries. An edge of spice took over promptly, bringing forth all that was promised in the aroma, with the nutmeg and allspice a bit more prominent. A touch of vanilla cropped up, lending a nice step down from the savory spice character, before a pleasant, rounded bitterness lingered smoothly at the finish. While perhaps a but too autumnally spicy for some tastes, it still delivers a warm, seasonal flavor.

A touch south of medium bodied, the malt sweetness and present spiciness combine to give more weight on the palate than originally anticipated.

OK, so I'm going to confess right upfront that the spices I found to be a bit busy, and not necessarily an unconditional asset, but they were kept in check just enough to make the entire presentation a fun enterprise. Granted, I might not rush out to find more, but what I had went down smooth, and it was a nice departure on a hot summer night. So kudos again for a saucy Sly Fox offering.

Foxman, Jul 11, 2006
Photo of GameOfBeers
4.04/5  rDev +6.9%

GameOfBeers, Aug 18, 2014
Photo of aszatk01
4/5  rDev +5.8%

aszatk01, Dec 10, 2013
Photo of fester71
4/5  rDev +5.8%

fester71, Dec 19, 2011
Photo of mdillon86
4/5  rDev +5.8%

mdillon86, Dec 02, 2012
Photo of NJBeer265
4/5  rDev +5.8%

NJBeer265, Jun 02, 2014
Photo of rydev24
4/5  rDev +5.8%

rydev24, Dec 22, 2012
Photo of ejimhof
4/5  rDev +5.8%

ejimhof, May 09, 2014
Photo of tbeer40
4/5  rDev +5.8%

tbeer40, Nov 11, 2012
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Christmas Ale from Sly Fox Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 85 ratings.