Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale - Anderson Valley Brewing Company
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Ratings: 1,383 | Reviews: 674 | Display Reviews Only:
3.88/5 rDev 0%
Appearance: pours an amber color with a 1" head that lasts a bit. No lacing develops.
Smell: light toffee and a hint of earthiness is all you can detect.
Taste: bread, toffee, a hint of vanilla, a bit of pepper, and a moderate bitterness creates a nice flavored beer.
Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp throughout. Aftertaste is short lived.
Drinkability: this beer is not a quick drinking beer, as the flavor profile is one to enjoy. Nice winter beer worth giving a try.
12-22-2010 23:05:36 | More by Gavage
3.75/5 rDev -3.4%
02/03/05- Purchased at Beverages and More in San Mateo, CA
Presentation- 22oz bomber poured into my 24 oz glass mug.
Appearance- Dark amber pour, almost brown. Large foamy head that maintains it's girth for a bit. Next to no lace though.
Smell- Heavy roasted and toasted caramel malts. Maybe a bit of hoppyness and maybe a slight bit of fruit.
Taste- About the most caramel I have tasted in a beer. It's like popping those Kraft caramels with a little bit of alcohol on the side. Well, maybe a roasted carmel on the campfire kinda taste. A bit of hop pleasure wayyyy in the background. Maybe a bit of brown sugar along with the caramel.
Mouthfeel- Moderately carbonated and a bit chewy and thick.
Drinkability- Very very interesting. Would be a good beer to go along with a caramel apple at the summer fair. Pretty rich for a beer. Like a ultra sweet brown ale. Not bad. Different for sure. Would give it a try again.
02-04-2005 04:29:07 | More by GClarkage
4.3/5 rDev +10.8%
This is an '03 version.
Appears amber with about an inch off white head that fades. Barely any lacing as it goes down. Lots of tiny bubbles exploding up the sides of the glass.
The smell is amazing. Lots of vanilla, maple, caramel, and oak notes present within the nose. No traces of hops are detected.
Tastes really, really good. It truley tastes like liquid caramel malts with vanilla cream. You don't find too many beers like this that can please you and go down smooth like this. This is like dessert. I'd rather have this than a DQ blizzard any day.
For the age, the carbonation seems outright perfect. Nice chewiness that lingers. Welcome to candy land! I wish I had an endless supply of this stuff.
Finger licking good!!
04-10-2005 02:59:08 | More by weeare138
District of Columbia
3.8/5 rDev -2.1%
A: Dark brown, amber color (thought not entirely opaque) with a medium sized foamy tan head that leaves nice lacing down the glass.
S: Very rich, lots of malty sweetness. Notes of cinnamon, vanilla, some fruityness, etc
T/M: Very creamy, full bodied, with strong roasted malty taste with some slight bitterness for balance. There are a lot of flavors and spices in here, though strongest seems to be the sweetness/vanilla flavors.
D: I can't say I'm particularly crazy about the taste of this beer, but I love the appearance and aromas and has a very pleasant mouthfeel. As a result, I usually find myself ordering this when I find it on tap.
12-14-2007 20:11:37 | More by yourefragile
4.05/5 rDev +4.4%
My, my, my. I first reviewed this beer in bottle form almost seven years ago. How many beers have been CANsumed by me since then?!? My good CAN Pal, IndiaPaleAle, hooked me up with this one in furtherance of my CANQuest (TM) and I am grateful.
From the CAN: Not much on this brightly colored red, blue and black CAN - "Bahl Hornin' Since 1987"; "Ale with Natural Flavor Added"; "The Legendary Boonville Brewery"; "Solar Powered Brewery".
I really remain surprised when the Crack reveals a CAN filled to the rim. The Glug produced a thick, creamy one-and-a-half fingers of deep-tan head with great retention. Color was a reddish-orangish amber with NE-quality clarity. Nose was a riot of biscuit malt, orange citrus, vanilla, toffee and pine needles. Wow! Mouthfeel was medium and my original review mentioned a taste of Orange Dreamsicle and I have to say, I do not disagree in this iteration. It really had an orange-vanilla flavor up front with the pine coming through on the finish. It was semi-dry which was a nice change of pace after a day of APAs and IPAs. I just realized that it was kind of stupid of me to have opened this today - the Solstice is this Thursday! Perhaps I CAN score another between now and then ... Man, for 6.9, it drank beautifully, but CANversely, I would not want a whole bunch of this beer, either. Finally, I should mention the dense lacing that appeared throughout. It was quite splendiferous.
12-19-2011 03:12:21 | More by woodychandler
3.5/5 rDev -9.8%
On-tap at Clark's Ale House
A very smooth beer, but a touch spicey for me. The beer was dominated by vanilla with a little dry cocoa and cinnamon. Looked pretty and smelled nice enough, but there wasn't enough malt or hops flavor. Easy drinking if you really like vanilla and spice, but I wasn't into it that much.
12-09-2006 20:12:38 | More by tempest
4.22/5 rDev +8.8%
12 ouncer, 2004 edition. Pours almond, clear, minimal off white head and a dearth of lacing after its sitting in the glass for a few minutes. Nose is a warm whiff of maple. This is a medium bodied brew. Slight spicing noted. Nice clean malty body. 6.9% fairly well hidden under layers of malt and some grainy/gritty hops, which come in late. Notes of smoke and rum also picked up as it warms. Pleasant winter warmer, one I would definitely pick up again.
01-30-2005 16:29:13 | More by Billolick
4.05/5 rDev +4.4%
I've enjoyed this winter offering for a number of years. It's subtle, lower abv for a winter brew, and a little different. I've always liked the mild hazlenut flavor in front of a warm fire. Pours amber with a fluffy head that fades to a ring. Smells fruitcake like with mixed fruit, winter spices, hazlenut, and cream. Taste is similar. Very creamy, lightly spicy, and nice hazlenut flavors throughout. Creamy and easy to drink. Recommended for something a little different.
01-15-2008 02:49:46 | More by Georgiabeer
3.9/5 rDev +0.5%
A: The ale is an amber color that allows hints of red and orange to come through. The head came in small on pour and quickly disappeared.
S: The aroma is fairly inert when the ale is cold. As it warms, it picks up a dry, somewhat tart cherry scent.
T: The ale's body continues the cherry presence. It is not maraschino, more of a black cherry flavor that has a bit of tartness and a pleasant strong sweetness. The cherry flavor dominates the taste, nothing else emerges spice-wise, but the cherry is not too sweet or too tart.
M: A nice take on the winter warmer style with the black cherry flavor replacing nutmeg and cinnamon.
D: The ale is a nice alternatve to the over-spiced ales that are so prevalent. The moderate abv provides a nice warming sensation that should be perfect for a cold January day.
01-07-2007 19:58:38 | More by akorsak
3.95/5 rDev +1.8%
A: Pours a lightly hazy garnet red in color with some decent amounts of amber highlight and light to moderate amounts of carbonation. The beer has a half finger tall dark beige head that reduces to a small thin patch of larger bubbles, a mottled very thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer, and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.
S: Light to moderate aromas of caramel and toffee malt sweetness with lighter notes of brown sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg. Very light notes of cocoa as it warms.
T: Moderate amounts of malty sweet flavors upfront with notes of caramel, toffee, and brown sugar. Additionally there are some light flavors of nutmeg and vanilla. Very light hints of bitterness that fades quickly. Very light amounts of cocoa as the beer warms.
M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth and creamy with a light amount of alcohol heat in the finish.
O: The beer is pretty easy to drink and enjoy even though there are a lot of sweet flavors, this beer is not cloying. The combination of malty sweetness and spices is very nice and one of the more enjoyable offerings in the style.
12-04-2012 01:19:19 | More by dbrauneis
3.83/5 rDev -1.3%
(Served in an American pint glass)
A-This beer pours a warm deep brown with a hint of red and a crystal clear body with a nice thin oatmeal colored head. It has a nice gentle carbonation of tiny bubbles.
S- The smell of slightly sweet of toasted malt and cider with a nice green hop hint in the background is subtle.
T- This beer has a nice smooth malt taste of pale malt with some hints of toasted malt blended it. A hint of biscuit malt is in the background. The finish has a nice gentle hop bitterness with a hint of sweet cider or a very faint cinnamon with a hint of alcohol, but that is very faint.
M-This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with some fizz that makes it seem more full. No real alcohol warmth or astringency.
D- This beer has some nice subtle flavors that give it some complexity and it has some unique taste that is nice.
12-01-2005 23:57:39 | More by rhoadsrage
3.95/5 rDev +1.8%
Poured with a small white head that stays, leaving no lace. Almost little carbonation. Clear ruby color. Nose is malt and spices. Starts with an sweet and slightly spice taste, finishes with a spice that I can't identify. Medium bodied. Unknown brew date but it tastes fresh.
09-11-2003 23:16:52 | More by jdhilt
4/5 rDev +3.1%
Pours a near clear reddish brown brew.
Smell is mostly malt and spices. Very sweet smelling, the fruit is there but not real strong.
Taste is shockingly sweet! This is a MALT BOMB, not the bit you get in most brews, almost like a Sammiclaus. A bit of hop bitterness is there but this just screams MALT!
Drinkable? Good question, it is a unique brew. Not something I would drink often but a good beer to show the flavor of malt.
03-22-2004 03:01:42 | More by Zorro
3.48/5 rDev -10.3%
The winter solstice is two weeks away, however I cannot wait any longer to drink this beer. On to the beer:
Light reddish hue which steers into pale orange. The head forms low on top, showing decent head retention and lace. The nose is low on firepower, but does have some resemblance of the traditional winter warmer. Spruce, gingerbread, pudding...yeah.
The malt level seems low per style....the spices are doing the work. Among the notes are Christmas pudding, figs, and spruce. Light-medium bodied with a creamish textue, good drinking.
For those looking for a more laid back winter seasonal, Anderson Valley has it here.
12-07-2010 06:36:19 | More by DoubleJ
3.9/5 rDev +0.5%
A - Pours a cloudy dark amber color, nice carbonation, tiny head, some lacing afterwards.
S - Scents of malts, some kinda fruit, slight spicyness.
T - The taste is sweet and malty, has a nice dry finish.
M - Medium body.
D - Drinkable. This is a nice brew from AV, quenches the thirst pretty well.
07-23-2006 01:50:12 | More by Wasatch
3.98/5 rDev +2.6%
Served in a large glass mug.
A nice brown body with a slight off white head. No lacing really, head fades quickly.
Smells of caramel malt and roasted grain.
Taste follows the nose through a malty experience. Caramel, brown sugar and honey wheat bread. Just enough bitter hops to balance. Some roasted graininess plays with the hops and the sweet malt.
Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied, thick and chewey.
Drinkability is pretty strong. A good brew for the winter months.
12-15-2008 15:37:55 | More by Stinkypuss
Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,383 ratings.