Snow Day Winter Ale - New Belgium Brewing
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Ratings: 1,299 | Reviews: 363 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by magictacosinus:
3.53/5 rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
More winter brew fun!! Poured into an English pint glass from a 12oz bottle. Freshness date is written as "03/MAR/13."
Produces a darkened color with brownish-amber tones into the glass, complete with a rather fantastic 3 finger head. Even when the head dies down really fast, there's still a generous foamy ring at the top. Bubbles are arranged all around the bottom and at the edges, and lacing remains on the edges. It looks like pretty much every one of these winter warmer releases these breweries have been churning out, but definitely looks like it has chocolate undertones this time, as opposed to blackcurrant or mollasses.
The aroma starts out with a surprisingly fresh hop texture alongside dark, albeit not so strong malts. There's not as much of the chocolate or caramel flavors as advertised just yet, but there is a brown sugary undertone that smells mellow and not too overpowering. Not too much alcohol overall. What sadly gets me is the finish, which is yeasty in an almost medicinal, slightly overbaring way that smells awfully "skunked," and not in the best sense! Let's hope that the flavor is a little different here.
The first taste turns out to luckily be a far better experience, but what seems to be lacking yet again are any strong chocolate or caramel flavors! On the other hand, it's got some strong coffee malty aromas going for it, often resembling the kona variety quite well. There is a bit of a surprisingly grassy finish as well, although it doesn't seem to go far beyond that. Not too many spices I can pick out here other than pepper and vinegar, but not as bad as you might expect. The flavor is pretty heartfelt, but I'm disappointed with the body, as it is a bit too watery and not carbonated enough, which in turn produces a rather thinned experience that increases the alcohol presence and weakens the flavor.
This is one of the better winter ales I've had recently, and it is easy to drink, but it is lacking on characteristics that could otherwise truly excite me about it. The coffee/pepper combo is a neat twist on the style, but I do wish it would be thicker, as I find no characteristic in a beer more comforting. Worth a try, especially with the holidays up and coming.
Serving type: bottle
12-21-2012 04:58:48 | More by magictacosinus
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Snow Day Winter Ale from New Belgium Brewing
83 out of 100 based on 1,299 ratings.