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Snow Day Winter Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Snow Day Winter AleSnow Day Winter Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,396 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,396
Reviews: 364
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 14.25%
Wants: 34
Gots: 66 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,396 | Reviews: 364 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RandyV
2.93/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Surprisingly dark in color with minimal head but decent lacing. Smells are pretty non-descript, some flowery hops and bready malt, but very mellow.

The taste is just as mellow, chocolate malt and some floral hop bitterness, with to me a slight medicinal quality. Mouthfeel is on the thin side, and it finishes ddry.

I like New Belgium, but this is a miss for me. It lacks in complexity and really doesn't have much of an identity at all. One and done.

Photo of LeeryLeprechaun
3.72/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Snow day pouts a black color with wonderful ruby highlights. The head is an impressive off white color that stays with the beer though out the drinking experience.

The aroma is of a wonderful mix of hops. Present is grapefruit and other citrus fruits along with some mild pine aroma.

The taste is the only unfortunate aspect of this beer. The flavor is of dark malts but lacks depth and complexity.

The mouthfeel is solid.

Overall this is an okay beer. I do not really like the blend of dark malts with so much hops.

Photo of breslaubrewer
4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful hop aroma, foamy white head, pours a dark brown almost black color. Smells of piney hops. Taste is medium mouthfeel, not heavy. Good cascade hop flavor and caramel/chocolate flavor. No roast, no burnt acrid taste. Very nice beer. When you drink it expect an American black pale ale made with low lovibond crystal malts, maybe a little chocolate malt and medium-high level of American cascade/centenial/or columbus hops.

Photo of ahq514
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of sommersb
3.29/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tasted On: 11-16-2011
Freshness: Best by 03-04-2012
Packaging: 12 oz. brown bottle
Glassware: New Belgium globe glass
Purchased: 6 pack from Wal-Mart

A: Black and clear, with ruby highlights. The head is tan and billowy, sitting 4+ fingers high. Good retention and excellent lace in the glass.

S: Citrus smelling hops are the only aroma I get.

T: Taste is composed of hoppy bitterness, with caramel and chocolate malts bringing a little sweetness. There are also flavors of burnt grains, like a heavily roasted coffee.

M: Carbonation and body are medium, with an aftertaste of roasted malts and hop bitterness. The finish seems astringent.

Overall this beer seemed one-dimensional and not very interesting. Not one I'd likely buy again.

Photo of bravejoejoe
3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First had this beer on draft, and at first it almost reminded me of arrogant bastard, but i had several beers before hand and I think that skewed my thought. It seems to have the same biscuit backbone that fat tire has, although this is a bit more hoppy and way more darker. I do get a malt nose also. Overall I really dig this beer, and am sure I will but several more six pack to get me through some of the long cold snow days here in Montana.

Photo of Beaver13
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Pours brown with a medium creamy off white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is roasted chocolate malts, with some fruit and resiny, piney hops.

The flavor is roasted malts with fruity, resiny, piney hops and a roast bitter finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, a nice, slightly mellow, black IPA.

Photo of EasyReader
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of mcphish22
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of harrymel
3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best by: 23FEB12

A: black with a finger off toasted cream head which falls quickly to a sheet of the same. sheet lace.
S: Spicy hops and toasted malts. Smells like an ABA. Some hints of burnt raisins. Me like.
T: Sharply bitter with a spicy tone over a nice toasted, dark malt profile. Good stuff.
M: medium bodied with slightly hi carb and a little to wet for my preference in this one.
O: This is the first beer in quite some time I've purchased and consumed over and over. I like it.

Photo of Tamarack22
3/5  rDev -17.8%

Photo of mikechance
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A --- Dark and rusty

S --- Hoppy and smokey malts

T --- Lots of roasted flavors, pepper, earthy

M --- Light carbination and a light/medium body

O --- Very good! It can replace a porter/stodt on nights when you want to enjoy some hoppiness.

I was bummed they decided to postpone brewing of 2 Below for a few years but this is very good. I will definately enjoy this again and again this holiday season! I can't wait to try it on tap.

Photo of rjknyy
3/5  rDev -17.8%

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.42/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

like everything new belgium does, this is a bit more hoppy than its counterparts. pours a deep dark mahogany brown/red with almost no head (bottle might be different). smells woody, boozy, hoppy, smokey. a sort of tart wine like vibe in the begining turns into a pleasant chocolate hops fusion with a nice winter warmer type sweet slow strong finish. the mouth feel is bizarre, not being very carbonated but kind of heavy makes it a weird one to drink a lot of (again, at least on tap). overall it isnt my favority new belgium offering, but as usual i appreciate their take on the style.

Photo of scratch69
2.44/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured a bottle into a mug.

Appearance- Very dark almost black with a fingers worth of lingering head. Nice amount of lacing.

Smell- Strong aroma of piney hops.

Taste- Bitter hops which overpower any other flavors that might be present.

Mouthfeel- Crisp, medium bodied, and a slightly dry finish.

Overall- This is not what I expect from a winter ale, the hop presence is overpowering. I did not enjoy this beer.

Photo of icehawk
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of callmeishmALE
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.21/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque dark-chocolate brown with a fairly thick and persistent light tan head that leaves some good lacing. Malty aroma has sweet chocolate and subtle spicy notes, just a hint of molasses. Flavor has a malty core with woody, semi-sweet chocolate, caramel and molasses notes. Smooth texture is just a teensy thin but still good, and quite tingly. Finish is woody and malty with a hint of caramel.

Photo of TheQuietMan22
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Straight pour into a pint glass. The color is very deep brown that is close to, but not quite, black; light passes through to give it ruby tones. Three fingers of creamy, rocky, tan head dissipated very slowly to leave a ton of foam trails on the glass and a thick ring around the edge.

Smell: New Belgium suggests a super cold serving temperature, which is surprising. At that temp there is really nothing more noticeable than grapefruit citrus and candy and toasted caramel. (I even get a nose full of cold air.) I let the beer warm a little and got a nice whiff of chocolate. It is a very pleasant and enticing mélange.

Taste: Mostly hoppy, but not intensely so. Lots of grapefruit citrus up front. As my taste buds adjusted, the sweet caramel and cocoa emerge, but both are still overshadowed by the hop citrus. Each sip leaves a lasting, almost metallic, bitterness.

Drinkability: It is a nice brew, but I think it is a little overhopped for the holiday season. I prefer my holiday spice to be holiday spice.

Photo of Tilley4
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

People keep reviewing this as a Winter Warmer when the site clearly states this is a Black IPA...? Whatever...

Roasted malts and piney hops dominate the nose here... Earthy and floral... Not as pungent as some but still rather nice... the Midnight Wheat used here gives this an interesting dynamic for sure... it works for this...

Lots of hoppiness present in the flavors with the toasted malts taking a backseat... Piney and resinous....the malts used bring this cocoa and bittersweet chocolate thing to the beer and I'm liking this quite a bit... I could see this being a new favorite seasonal...

I liked this one quite a bit... hops are present but the malt is so unique it almost feels like a porter... this beer is way too easy to drink...

Photo of redluvr
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of dfh
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of gtermi
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is a very dark brown, with a nice white head

S: I am getting a lot of hops and some sweet malt

T: The beer has a good amount of hops and a nice sweet finish. I am getting a slight roasted taste too.

M: The beer has a nice crispness and very easy to drink. Leaves your mouth a little dry.

O: This is one of the better winter beers I have ever had. I enjoy the easiness of drinking this beer and how smooth it goes down. Cant beat that for how cheap it is.

Photo of quaybr
3.37/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, a dark brown with an amber tint. Light tan head that dissipates after a few sips. Pretty lacing left for an inch, none thereafter.

Smells of strong floral and citrusy hops with roasted and caramel malts present.

Caramel pushes through - a bit too much - with roasted, as well, making up an unbalanced malt backbone. Hop profile is bold and it works for me. A bit confused by the sweetness.

Mouthfeel is weak and thin, with a slight oily residue. Doesn't carry across the tongue well.

Not a fan of this. It seems like they were going for a sweet Black IPA, but the flavor and feel are a bit off. To a friend with a limited beer budget, I would suggest they pass this up.

Photo of Gehrig
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep mahogany body with bright ruby trim, topped with a thick, durable finger of off white foam. Nice lacing and duration, nice-looking beer. Caramel and some chocolate malt on the nose, with some of the advertised Centennial and Chinook hops in tow, though the malt is more prominent in the smell.

The aroma simply does not convey how hopped the taste is. The Centennial and Chinook hops are even more prominent in the taste than the chocolate and caramel malt, delivering a strong taste and chewy, gritty texture. This is delicious and balanced.

I would even make the case that Snow Day could have a bit bolder malt flavor. This to me could use a good dose of coffee and more chocolate. Snow Day is quite good beer. More malt would put this in the range of Avery's Old Jubilation, which has more than enough malt to spare.

However, this is nonetheless quite good and well worth enjoying. New Belgium has done a fine job of rounding out its base into new, often terrific flavors--Ranger IPA, Abbey, Trippel, 2 Below, and now Snow Day.

Snow Day Winter Ale from New Belgium Brewing
83 out of 100 based on 1,396 ratings.