Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

Snow Day Winter Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Snow Day Winter AleSnow Day Winter Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

363 Reviews
THE BROS
86
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 363
Hads: 1,408
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 5.35%
Wants: 32
Gots: 78 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: NStLincoln on 10-14-2011

Pleasantly hoppy, Snow Day carries the subtle chocolate and caramel flavors of a new brewing malt known as Midnight Wheat. The Styrian Golding, Centennial and Cascade hops bring the backbone of hoppy bitterness to complement the roasty undertones. This beer is the deep garnet of a roasted walnut and presents a creamy tan head, floating artfully atop. Snow Day is bold and hoppy, drinkable and strong.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Snow Day Winter Ale Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 363 | Hads: 1,408
Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark malt and dark sugar aromas mingle with a little dried fruit and some herbal hop in the background. This smooth beer has dark bread crust to biscuit flavors emerging from dark malt and dark sugar flavors. The hop flavors tend to the herbal and spicy rather than bitter, balancing the malt well and joining in a delightful, lingering aftertaste. The beer has very good lacing. (379 characters)

Photo of Calypso
3.59/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep, clear reddish brown. One finger of off-white head that leaves nice lacing.
S - Pepper and leather, with a hint of hops. Very distinctive.
T - Dark malts, coffee, tobacco, again with a hint of hops.
M - Wet, medium-high carbonation, light body.
O - An interesting beer. Complex but well-balanced. Not for the faint of heart, but I think it's a rewarding beer. (368 characters)

Photo of jimmah120
4.11/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle, consumed last season. review from notes

dark brown/amber with a frothy tan head. smell is earthy, woody, pine and funk, with tinges of chocolate, hazelnut, nad dark fruit. a crispy medium feel gives way to roasted grain, pine hop, and savory malt. nutty, with some holiday spice, but not too sweet. decent showing of hops.

one of my favorite holiday ales. loses the overwhelming spice of others, and instead it's hoppy and toasty. (445 characters)

Photo of TeamMathis
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black. Nice lace.
Smell: Immediately hoppy with grapefruit and pine, then roasted coffee and chocolate.
Taste: A hoppy, roasted blend.

The hoppy smell explodes onto the scene, and then is followed by a roasted character of coffee and chocolate; in the very least a roasted something. The hops are bright and add that great citrus and bitterness to the mix. I really like this style. I would get this again. (419 characters)

Photo of gmfessen
4.09/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, Snow Day is a very deep brown-red color with a thick, light mocha colored, pillowy head. The nose is a mixture of citrusy, spicy hops and a toasty malty profile. Flavor is what you might expect based on the smell; west coast hops - grapefruit and pine resin - melded with a roasty, toasty, slightly nutty, biscuity malt taste. Mouthfeel is medium in body with an inactive, slightly creamy carbonation. Overall, definitely a beer I could curl up with on a cold winter's night, or anytime for that matter - good one by NB (561 characters)

Photo of SometimesIfart
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Pours a slightly transparent black with a huge frothy, slight mocha head. Left beautiful lacing.

S - Smells tropical. Mango up front followed by pineapple, pine and grapefruit. Smells like a well crafted IPA to me.

t - Lots of pine and grapefruit followed by a small amount of mango and pineapple, along with some slightly roasted malt. Only complaint is that the taste remains a bit thin and watery which really throws it off.

M - Thin, Watery body with low carbonation.

O - Overall, This was probably the only good beer that I drank last night. If New Belgium could fix the odd off-putting watery flavor and up the body, This would be a real winner in a lot of people's eyes. (685 characters)

Photo of nickapalooza86
3.44/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Super dark brown, clear, finger and a half of tan head.

smell is piney hops, chocolate, caramel and a little coffee

taste is bitter coffee, caramel, chocolate, piney and floral hops.

mouthfeel is the biggest flaw in this beer, really thin, really sharp, doestbwork for the style imo.

a decent black ale but I will stick with others I enjoy more. (349 characters)

Photo of PorterLambic
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, reddish, almost chestnut, brown with solid light penetration and a head that seriously lasts forever. I'm still working on it after an hour and there is still a thickish film of tan sitting on half a glass. Lacing is scattered at best, sparse is a more apt description.
Smell is roast malt, toast, cocoa and a wee whiff of hop. Balance is good.
Taste is right on the same line as the smell with a roasty, almost toasty malt note, bittersweet chocolate/cocoa and some grassy hops note to balance it all out.
Not particularly smooth but not a rough beer to drink by any means. Drying throughout. Watery feel with a soft effervescence. You could easily partake of several of these without incident but it isn't compelling with this weak body. (754 characters)

Photo of chinchill
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle served in a Corsendonk glass.

Appearance: Pours with a very dark but clear brown body, and a large, foamy tan head. A moderate amount of sticky lacing gets left behind.

Plenty of weedy/herbal hops with some fruity notes. Aroma of a black IPA.

Taste:More pine and floral in tasting, but still lots of citrus and weedy/herbal notes. Only mildly bitter. Lingering, mainly hoppy, aftertaste. Flavor of a hybrid English/American black PA.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: a pleasantly hoppy black PA. More drinkable than it might be if it were actually an IPA. (605 characters)

Photo of artk321go
4.63/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Love this beer!! Really sad that soon it won't be available. Nice spicy hops in the nose. Hops up front in the flavor as well, that give way to the dark malts. What is that "Midnight Wheat"? Need to find another beer with that to help nail down the flavor. The body is not heavy, good mouth feel. Looks like a "Coke" with much smaller bubbles. Nice Lace. For me, it's a perfect balance. Just the right amount of assertive hops, and a good combination, the Centennial/Cascade and Styrian Goldings and dark malts. Finish is dry and crispy. I think I would drink this in the summer too. Never reviewed a beer before. Hope I don't sound noobish. (641 characters)

Photo of Philousa
3.29/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Appearance is opaque black, cola colored against the light. Head is decent in size with small bubbles, grey in color. It really looks like a well carbed Old Ale. Lacing is good. Aroma has slight Belgian malt sweetness with floral, somewhat grassy hops, and some baker's chocolate. The chocolate comes through in flavor right away, slightly bitter, followed by earthy barkish metal. The bitter hoppiness is earthy as well. I'm guessing English hops such as fuggles are used for bitterness. Feel tends slightly toward watery and finishes dry. I would never put this in the same category as Sublimely Self Righteous or other Black IPAs, but its definitely not a winter warmer, considering its formidable use of hops. This reminded me a bit of 1554 but a bit brighter. I'd have one again. Which is good considering I got a variety 12 pack with three more left. (856 characters)

Photo of Big_Twofifty
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours frothy foam into the glass with about 2 inches of a light tan head that remains on the sides of the glass with drinking. The body of the beer is a deep semi-translucent amber when held to the light, but without light is a more of a deep brown.

Smell: Rich roasted nutty aroma and I am able to detect the hops. Lastly, I almost believe I can smell spruce trees in the forest when I indulge in another smell of this beer.

Taste: First sip has a burst of hoppy bitterness, but then with subsequent tastes is milder, but still is boldly at the forefront of the flavor. I also detect notes of the aforementioned spruce, but maybe a better description would be simply of an evergreen tree as the signature smell of spruce is not as evident in the taste.

Mouthfeel: Light mouthfeel with medium carbonation and lingering bitterness on the back of the tongue.

Overall: This is a very drinkable beer, with some good winter flavors, being mainly the evergreen aroma and taste. I enjoy this beer when outside in the winter or sitting next to a fire with the Christmas tree providing the ambiance to go with the taste. (1,176 characters)

Photo of Oxymoron
3.16/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Er not sure I would really call this a Black IPA but ok. Pours a mostly black color with shades around the edges. Mostly clear with a soft light tan head.

The aroma is balanced with a light astringent malt aroma with more of a fruity nose up front. Some orange and grapefruit but more like a zest than hop. A light herbal almost floral aroma with some rose peddles and a kiss of sweet caramel.

The flavor follows suit. More of a fruity, zesty note with a herbal backing. More astringent malts come out with a light toasty and big toffee notes. Some butter-esk flavors as well. More earthy like, not exactly dirt but something esk there.

The body is moderate but well carbonated. Not overly but does enhance the astringent characters. Overall more of a different style of beer, but as a black IPA it doesnt quite fit. (819 characters)

Photo of bump8628
4.02/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, creamy khaki head - beautiful looking beer. Big hop-derived spiciness on the nose transitioning to a more malt-centric body. Roasted nuts, cola, carob, toffee, weak diner coffee, sourdough. Hop bitterness is balanced evenly. Pithy citrus with a punch of earthy spice describes the hop flavor. A nice beer to throw back on a late winter afternoon (with snow in the forecast). I was expecting something more akin to a Black IPA/CDA, instead this is more like a well-hopped American Brown. (498 characters)

Photo of BlackBelt5112203
3.76/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into a mug at cellar temperature.

L – Deep brown color with a 3-finger creamy, frothy cream-colored head. Really nice retention, but only some lacing.

S – Chocolate, toasted, and nutty malts as well as citrus and earthy hops. This really does have a grainy wheat aroma to it, too.

T – Chocolate and toasted malts with some bitter roasted barley characteristics, as well. Toward the finish, some earthy, pine, and subtly citrusy bitter hops come into play.

F – Light-to-medium-bodied with good carbonation, a smooth and crisp mouthfeel, and a slightly bitter finish.

O – This is a decent black ale. It’s pretty tasty but the flavors seem a bit weak (as in neither strongly malty or hoppy) and not very well-blended. The malty and the hoppy parts just seem sort of separated. Nevertheless, this is an easy drinker and a nice, different winter beer. (883 characters)

Photo of kristenspaintings
3.11/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks very dark, toasty amber highlights, creamy tan head. The 2-finger head has a a very appealing yeasty, bubbly, creamy look.

Tastes like double-dark roasted coffee. The initial taste is not a very strong one, but very oaty/nutty and toasted. The mouthfeel is VERY dry.

Our overall impression is that it's very pungent and overcooked. (339 characters)

Photo of Bosoxfan20
2.79/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A- 12 oz bottle into pint glass. Poured dark brown with a thick 1.5 finger, light tan head. Looks very similar to a cola, almost as though I poured a soda pop. Good retention with fantastic lacing.

S- Distinct New Belgium smell with the Goldings hops. Not a huge aroma. Earthy, herbal with some faint chocolate notes.

T- Sweet up front. Not overly complex. A hoppy winter warmer. Lots of toasted bread flavor...some similar flavors to a rye. Dry finish. A resounding bitterness lingers. I kept waiting for the crisp finish the label speaks of, but it never came.

M- Medium body with decent carbonation. Quite dry

O- Not bad, but this winter warmer didn't leaving me with many warm feelings. Certainly not my favorite from New Belgium. Highlight was the appearance. But for me, it seemed to go down hill from there.

$10.99 for 6 pk (836 characters)

Photo of ZenAgnostic
4.34/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a duvel tulip.

Appearance - Black body with a tan head. Plenty of head and retention and stick.

Smell- Grass and charred wood in the nose.

Taste- Very grassy body and aftertaste. Dark, butter chocolate.

Mouthfeel - Astringent. Somewhat thin mouthfinish, but a light creaminess in the front. Sharp. (315 characters)

Photo of dhannes
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a chilled glass at a local restaurant. Waited until the glass and beer had warmed up a bit...about 5 minutes worth.

A=Rich, reddish brown...not worthy of an "American Black Ale" but appealing nonetheless. Head disappeared quickly.

S=Brown sugar, cloves, molasses.

T=More like a red ale--creamy malt with prunes, cherries, and nutmeg.

M=Less body than anticipated, and less than many reds. Low carbonation, but pleasant to drink.

O=An enjoyable beer that I might try again...I would never have guessed that this was supposed to be similar to an IPA, as the hops were relatively minimal. More similar to a red ale than a black ale. (644 characters)

Photo of Mavigo
4.07/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Being that it is winter, the consumption of this beer is a must. Served in a nonic pint.

A: Pours a very dark, basically black, brown color with a short off white head with small amounts of lacing.

S: Smells like malt sugars, brown sugars, barley, and dabs of spices

T: Rich flavor to it, wheat, barley, sugars, herbal and spicey tones, fairly sweet

M: Has medium carbonation with a fairly rich and robust texture to it

O: Overall, another good beer from New Belgium, a great package of flavors with a relatively decent price. (533 characters)

Photo of Scotchboy
3.79/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle -

A: Dark brown with a good amount of head and lacing.

S: Roast, citrus, coffee, orange, resin, herbal, smooth malt, hint of wheat, hint of char.

T: Herbal, roast, char, citrus, orange again, resiny, with a hint of dark chocolate and caramel. Touch of spice as well to boot.

MF: Creamy body, with a medium (but lighter) mouthfeel and adequate carbonation.

O: Pleasant and a good shot at a hoppy winter brown/black IPA. (435 characters)

Photo of philmore213
4.26/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Has somewhat of a burnt taste to begin, but after a few more sips the flavour does set it i get the pine taste a hint of bitter, do not taste any cocoa flavor. Nice head, poured into tall glass traps a lot of smell in and makes taste stand out. Very easy to drink, was not used to the taste to start, but does grow on you very well. (332 characters)

Photo of vkv822
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12oz : tulip
Best Before March 10, 2013

Near black body with deep red highlights when held to light. Thick, creamy, craggy off white head with good retention.

Citric and piney hops transition to caramel malt notes.

Citric and pine hops again, with a really pleasant malty, cocoa backing. Very smooth transition in flavors.

Medium body, low foamy carbonation.

A very well done ABA. While there are definitely more bold, flavorful examples of the style, this has a complex, really enjoyable flavor profile while still being easy drinking. (541 characters)

Photo of DrewsBrews450
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Frist love the picture on the bottle, it just sets up wat the beer is all about. The beer is black/dark brown with ruby light through the bottem and a nice foam white maybe off white head. The smell is of hops and coco maybe fruit of some kind, smells really good. The taste is even better u get the hops for sure but not crazy u get a little roasted choclate really kind of simple but the beer just taste so good. The mouthfeel is maybe the only weak point of the beer it has a thin body with a medium body on the swallow, but im not gonna fault this beer at all for a small thing to me like mouthfeel. Overall all this beer is great I would deff say try this if u like hops but like somthing a little darker for the winter. Every beer i have had from there winter folly pack has been awsome go get one. (804 characters)

Photo of NilocRellim
3.25/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

The ale poured out from the bottle and had a blackish ruby color to it. It also had a faint, citrus hop nose to it, but only slightly. It tasted like a red ale to me, and was hopped but not bitter or overwhelming in any way. No significant after taste or lingering flavours.

Would I buy this beer again? Probably. (314 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Snow Day Winter Ale from New Belgium Brewing
84 out of 100 based on 363 ratings.