Christmas Ale - Breckenridge Brewery
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Ratings: 752 | Reviews: 355 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by psuKinger:
2.95/5 rDev -15.7%
Bottle poured into my Sam Adam's Perfect Pint glass. The artwork on the label is full of Christmas Cheer. Let's hope the liquid hidden behind it is as well.
A: Pours a dark ruby red/light brown shade, with an almost-white head on top, about a fingers worth, that foamed up nicely and formed big "pancake batter" bubbles off to the right side.
S: Lots of malt in the nose. Caramel more than toffee. A touch bready, maybe a hint of grass. Also perhaps the slightest hint of spice (nutmeg?). Will confirm on the taste.
T: Holiday spices shine through almost immediately, much more so than in the nose. Underneath is a strong caramel backbone. Hops aren't readily apparent on the first sip, but over time they accumulate in the back of the tongue on the finish. Not a particularly bright, citrusy hop; more of an earthy, pine bitterness.
This beer runs a little sweet, and the caramel is unbalanced for my liking. It is, however, not as far off-balance as some that rely so heavily on caramel malts... the spices and the way the hops accumulate help to maintain some semblance of balance.
M: Thick, full, and sticky. Lots of tongue coating. Carbonation is present, but I'd like to see a bit more, personally.
D/O: Not a bad offering from Breckenridge, but I'm just admittedly not a huge fan of all that Caramel malts. The hops and spices gave it a little mileage for me, but in the end it just feels like I'm being bludgeoned by syrupy/bready caramel sweetness, and I'm just not digging it.
12-04-2011 20:53:44 | More by psuKinger
More User Reviews:
3.65/5 rDev +4.3%
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.
11-13-2012 21:07:05 | More by oberon
3.68/5 rDev +5.1%
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.
11-05-2011 23:23:10 | More by RoyalT
3.68/5 rDev +5.1%
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.
03-04-2011 23:18:08 | More by BeerAdvocate
3.28/5 rDev -6.3%
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.
11-15-2003 22:25:41 | More by Beaver13
2.5/5 rDev -28.6%
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 :)
11-02-2010 01:35:37 | More by es42289
2.8/5 rDev -20%
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.
08-07-2006 02:52:57 | More by Dizzy
3.68/5 rDev +5.1%
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.
12-18-2009 00:24:34 | More by whoneeds8
4.15/5 rDev +18.6%
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..
11-08-2004 15:50:34 | More by ADR
3.18/5 rDev -9.1%
Pours with minimal head even with a pretty vigorous pour, color is a tawny caramel brown with amber highlights when held toward the light. Head is a light cream hue and forms speckled lacing scattered around my chalice. Aromatics are muted a bit but there is some faint citrus qualities with caramel malts and a touch of spices. Flavor is very light on the spice additions and hop bitterness a touch of that citrus and pine in the finish. Caramel malt drives the flavor with a nice winter warmer, nothing over the top this beer plays it pretty safe. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied carbonation is easygoing nothing big to report here. Move along to some more interesting christmas ales this one was priced right and not bad this may be my value beer this season.
11-14-2009 19:06:16 | More by WVbeergeek
3.3/5 rDev -5.7%
Got this on-tap at Taco Mac in Decatur.
Pours a slightly hazy brown color with a half-finger off-white head. The head dissipates into a patchy layer of bubbles on top and a thin ring around the glass.
Smells of light spices and sweet malt with a bit of an off aroma that I can only describe as metallic.
Tastes similar to how it smells. Sweet malt followed by mild amounts of nutmeg and brown sugar - then the off-smell turns into an off-taste. This seems to be the problem with a lot of Breckenridge beers.
Mouthfeel is good. It's a bit on the thin side but the carbonation is good.
Drinkability is alright. It's really pretty good until that off-flavor hits.
Overall I'm disappointed once again by this brewery. They sucked me in with the 471 Small Batch and it's been downhill from there. This isn't a terrible beer by any stretch, but there are plenty of other better ones of the style out there.
12-02-2008 01:48:07 | More by glid02
Christmas Ale from Breckenridge Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 752 ratings.