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Christmas Ale - Breckenridge Brewery

Not Rated.
Christmas AleChristmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

804 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 804
Reviews: 362
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 14.57%
Wants: 10
Gots: 51 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Breckenridge Brewery visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.40% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-28-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 804 | Reviews: 362 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by damndirtyape:
Photo of damndirtyape
3.7/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Shaker pint glass. From this year (just put out) but no date stamp on bottle that I could find.

Appearance: Nice deep ruby red clear color when held up to the light, otherwise coppery on the table. Off-white 1/4" foam upon pouring, leaving a persistent thin foam across teh top the whole way down. Persistent strands and islands of lace noted.

Smell: When first poured and still a bit cold, the barest hint of cinnamon and some piney hops thrown there. As it warms up, the cinnamon becomes more muted as do the piney hops, and the malt comes out a bit more. Still pretty faint though at all temperatures.

Taste: Spicy up front - cinnamon maybe? Hard to tell, as it all blends together pretty fast with the roasted malt and bitter hop finish. Hops are a mix between piney and citrus and tea-like bitterness. The hop balance is better towards piney and citrus as the beer warms up.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation, but the hop oils really stick to my teeth with this one. Definitely thicker than water, maybe even a little creamy under the carbonation.

Overall / Drinkability: A decent winter warmer. I suspect it would have been better in a snifter given the weak aromas. I wasn't sure about the spice and hop combination, but by the end of the glass it grew on me and I found it enjoyable. Again, decent. Not outstanding, not amazing, but decent and worth a try.

damndirtyape, Nov 27, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a clear rich tawny color with a half finger creamy off white head atop,nice broken lace left behind as it settles slowly.Dark fruit leafy somewhat spicy hops in the nose,a little cakiness in the background as well.Decent flavors but they lack depth,a decent leafy hoppiness goes pretty well with mild caramel and dark fruit sweetness,drying in the finish.The problem is the flavors all end abruptly,it's close to being really damn good,it's still a pretty decent winter warmer as is.

oberon, Nov 13, 2012
Photo of RoyalT
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – This is a kind of cruddy-looking, dull dark brown in color with a surprisingly white head that came up nicely.

Smell – The roasted malts are sharp here at the nose and a bit burnt. There’s a nice sweet balance as well that is a little like raw sugar. I do get a bitter hop aroma as well so overall this one is well-balanced.

Taste – I got some spice at the taste that I missed at the smell. The roasty malts step back from the nose and the sugar is more cola-flavored than anything else. I like the idea of a hop balance in this style but here it only served to dilute the malt base which was overmatched in the first place.

Mouthfeel – This is medium-bodied with very light carbonation in keeping with the style.

Drinkability – I enjoyed this more than it sounds. I was expecting something a bit more substantial and this turned out to be a session beer which OK isn’t all that bad.

RoyalT, Nov 05, 2011
Photo of t2grogan
3.5/5  rDev 0%

t2grogan, Oct 06, 2014
Photo of J2L
3.5/5  rDev 0%

J2L, Nov 29, 2012
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #47 (Dec 2010):

A more modest carbonation yields a small head here; the lacing does a good beery job of sticking though. Cookie dough, burnt sugar, plum pudding and toasted bread show not only its strength but the thickness of malt from the aroma. Creamy full body. Full malt jacket here--this beer is not kidding around. Brown bread, brown sugar, toasted marshmallows and a toasted husk flavor abound. Warmth kicks in mid-pint and stays mellow. Hops are certainly big enough to at least stand up to the sizable maltiness. The bitterness does not try to crush the malt, but rather tames it. Sweet, roasty and slightly hoppy finish.

BeerAdvocate, Mar 04, 2011
Photo of BigMarty1980
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%

BigMarty1980, Tuesday at 12:41 AM
Photo of csmartin6
3.5/5  rDev 0%

csmartin6, Dec 13, 2013
Photo of WuAnquo1
3.5/5  rDev 0%

WuAnquo1, Jan 07, 2012
Photo of Beaver13
3.28/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The Christmas Ale poured reddish-brown with very little head. The head quickly disappeared for the most part leaving little traces. The beer had a slight malty, caramel like aroma with hints of alcohol, pretty subtle overall. It tasted a little spicy with a big hoppy finish. It was pretty full-bodied with a slight metallic feel. Overall, not as impressive as I was expecting. I normally like a spicier Christmas Ale.

Beaver13, Nov 15, 2003
Photo of iemailjack
4/5  rDev +14.3%

iemailjack, Dec 09, 2011
Photo of es42289
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

too much hop biterness. Did not seem to be as spicy as other christmas ales. first sip seems harsh and makes you aprehensive about the next sip. not enough malt coming through to efficiently mask the high hop bitterness and higher alcohol.
Gets better as you get closer to the end of the 6pack though...as expected :)

es42289, Nov 02, 2010
Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.5/5  rDev 0%

BuckeyeSlim, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of reitzbrewing
4.75/5  rDev +35.7%

reitzbrewing, Dec 09, 2012
Photo of Skye1024
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Skye1024, Dec 17, 2011
Photo of dankjohn
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

dankjohn, Nov 10, 2014
Photo of DankNEggs
4.72/5  rDev +34.9%

DankNEggs, Oct 24, 2014
Photo of sigtau200ws
3/5  rDev -14.3%

sigtau200ws, Dec 27, 2011
Photo of Cynic-ale
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

Cynic-ale, Aug 01, 2013
Photo of jminch
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

jminch, Dec 03, 2012
Photo of Dizzy
2.8/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours brown with red highlight and a off white creamy head. Smells like malts (maybe some roasted malts) and a little bit of fruitiness. I'm tasting cloves, less malt then I expected and a little hop bitterness. There is some alcohol burn as well. I was expecting the spice flavors to be more prominant as well. The mouthfeel is thinner than I would expect for a winter warmer. This isn't bad, and is probably worth trying, but I am a little disappointed with this one. You'd be better off picking up Breckenridge's Oatmeal Stout.

Dizzy, Aug 07, 2006
Photo of ryser2k
3.5/5  rDev 0%

ryser2k, Dec 18, 2013
Photo of whoneeds8
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass amber with a thck frothy head. Great lacing all the way down. The scent has a hop presence. The taste has the hops up front that are found in the nose, but it really doesn't have much of a sweet aftertaste like a winter warmer should. This is more like an AIPA than a WW. That being said, it masks the high alcohol well, which really doesn't match the style either.

whoneeds8, Dec 18, 2009
Photo of ADR
4.15/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap, Supreme Court Bar, Adam's Mark Hotel, Denver, CO...

Dark mahogany color, clear and transmits chestnut highlights. Tan head settles at 1/4 of an inch. Crystalline ring laces. Smells of brown sugar/cinnamon on toast. Viscous mouthfeel, a little flat but consistent and without fade. Pleasant taste, caramel and a hint of a cherry impression, rounds to a lush carob and vanilla with a peach sense. A little sweet overall, but a good and festive brew with a number of individual and subtle flavors..

ADR, Nov 08, 2004
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Christmas Ale from Breckenridge Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 804 ratings.