Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale - Anderson Valley Brewing Company
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Ratings: 1,323 | Reviews: 672 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by Bounty628:
4.22/5 rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Brewed as a winter warmer ale, Winter Solstice packs a very pleasant 6.9% ABV in each bottle which allows this offering to both provide a nice quantity of alcohol but not be pushed into the Imperial category thereby scaring off some drinkers. The alcohol though at 6.9% is balanced throughout the offering not pushing away the other flavors in the beer that make this beer a solid pour.
Poured from a bottle, Winter Solstice pours brown with ruby highlights accentuated throughout the pour. The head on the pour is rather thin and beige and does not hold its own much after the pour. The pour comes off nice and smooth and there is a minimal amount of carbonation noted in the glass once poured from the bottle. Based upon the minimal amount of head in the pour, there is not a noted amount of lacing left along the glass during the drinking of Winter Solstice.
The aroma of this beer blends some rich and dark fruit notes to a sweet and almost vanilla complexity. You get some dried fruits like cherries up front and then comes in the smooth and warm vanilla nature matched nicely to some holiday spices. The balance in the nose really is remarkable as one component does not shine through more than any other and the symbiotic relationship at play here works ideally.
As one could imagine given the pleasant aroma at work in this offering, the taste has an appealing complexity to it that serves this offering quite well. The malts come through in much greater detail in the taste of this beer and they work off of the sweetness that is within the offering quite nicely. This ale is neither too malted or too sweet and truly is a fine creation for a winter warmer style. Though the spices in the nose do not come through as much in the taste as one might have expected, there is still that warm, holiday feel to this offering. There is also a certain element of tartness to this ale that is expected and matched to the dried cherry undertones recognized in the nose.
Winter warmers tend to across the board have a very smooth and mild mouthfeel and Winter Solstice is no different. Even though this offering is an ale, there is the impression of a creaminess that works its way across the palate during the offering thanks in part to the warming vanilla highlights accentuated in the offering. The mild carbonation in this offering is not a fault of the beer as it allows the beer to sort of be forced across the mouth rather than have the carbonation do all the heavy lifting. This is a very easy to drink winter warmer that is solid from start to finish.
Serving type: on-tap
01-31-2010 16:54:04 | More by Bounty628
More User Reviews:
4.4/5 rDev +13.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
Serving type: can poured into glass
Appearance: Beautiful, medium chestnut colour. Upon pouring, forms an incredibly rich, foamy head, albeit one that dissipates quickly.
Smell: Not much of a smell, surprisingly, considering what came next
Taste: Oh, WOW. Nicely malty, with little hops bite, but a lovely overall taste that almost disguises the fairly high ABV.. Just a little bit of the taste remains on the back of the tongue after a sip.
Overall: I'm *really* enjoying this six pack!
Serving type: can
04-04-2014 00:45:52 | More by ZorroZ
3.83/5 rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
Poured from the bottle into a cheater pint.
A: Beautiful deep ruddy copper and very clear. Thick two finger head subsides quickly into a very delicate ring. no chill haze, moderate carbonation with wispy lacing, looks like caul fat clinging to the glass.
S: nice malty presence. Some cinnamon notes and raisin and figs, like a cinnamon raisin bagel.
T: follows nose plus some caramel or toffee like notes. Smoooth on initial uptake. More malt notes come out on swallow.
M: Velvety smooth on finish with that characteristic bagel notes peeking up. spicy on side of tongue with the perfect carbonation. Very pleasant.
O: this is probably the best of the winter warmers, imo. The spices do not overtly dominate and punch you in the craw. It really is very well balanced and quite malty without being obnoxiously spiced. A go to in winter for sure.
Serving type: bottle
03-28-2014 03:13:12 | More by Scrapss
Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,323 ratings.