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Winter Ale - Rivertown Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Winter AleWinter Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

107 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 107
Reviews: 38
rAvg: 3.64
pDev: 15.38%
Wants: 1
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Rivertown Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ltjska04 on 11-28-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 107 | Reviews: 38 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BEERchitect
3.93/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cinnamon Toast Crunch dry cereal- There! Review over. But to add, it's remarkable in how the malty flavors of light toast, pale caramel, and hearty barley malt frame the backdrop for added spice of cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice in such a way to evoke an uncanny resemblance to the cereal that I loved as a kid. Where the medium bodied beer carries a caramel-heavy start, the copper colored ale develops into a semi-dry mid palate before utimately falling a bit weak. But the cinnamon and caramel flavor are inviting, if not one-dimensional.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of stakem
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of Brenden
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This beer is a red-shaded brown that's almost, but not quite, opaque due to its darkness. Held to the light, it's actually fairly clear. The head is a tan one that reaches about half a finger with moderate retention, holding up a foamy layer that drops some spotting.
Sweetness comes out front in the aromas with immediate spicing as well, strong cinnamon that isn't so strong as to string the nostrils, and a little nutmeg and allspice beneath that off of some nicely toasty malts. Caramel comes out with the malts and molasses is more at the end as far as the smell but adds to the sweetness as a dryness comes in to balance.
As with the nose, spices and sweetness come out evenly up front with a bit of bite and a nice, clean cinnamon finish. There's a nice moderate hoppiness in the middle, not enough to take anything away from the main aspects of it but just a little leaf for added depth.
A little sweetness comes up and somehow stays on the tongue even as it dries. The body is fairly crisp and flows smoothly, losing just a touch of its medium body at the very end of each sip, which lingers with a little leafy dryness even as cinnamon gently nips.

Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of Brent
4.35/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

In what has been a pretty lackluster season for winter seasonals, this beer shines above the rest. Bright, almost luminous, copper. Aroma was warmly spicy. Moderate, clean bodied mouthfeel. Spicing is prominent but not overpowering. Natural cinnamon, a touch woody, with some other cookie-like background spice. ETOH is well integrated - a little warming and perhaps lending some pepper to the cinnamon. Overall very well done.

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

2.5 A: Clear deep amber color. I could only muster 1/4 of a finger of beige head that fell almost instantly.

3.5 S: Lots of cinnamon (but not too much) that meshes well with the caramel maltiness. Molasses adds another well integrated layer of depth. Simple, but certainly pleasant.

3.5 T: Like the nose. Cinnamon, caramel, molasses. Malts are slightly grainy and this is very clean overall.

4.0 M: Light to lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Good creaminess for how light the body is. Smooth.

3.5 D: Not a bad winter brew. Very simple, but tasty.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - iced-tea color with a thin, soapy layer of manila. Good staying power for less than a finger of thickness. Nice lace stickiness too, and there was a layer of foam from start to finish.

Aroma - has a caramelly, Coke-like aroma. Light spicing that is hard to identify. It smells like licorice and cinnamon because that's what it says on the label, but without knowing, I might guess clove, cardamom, or anise.

Taste - malty with a touch of roast. The molasses and cinnamon dominate the palate at first, followed by a stiff bite of hops. Quite the heavy hand on hop additions, I'd say. It's a decent counter to the sweeter ingredients. I generally like a little less bitterness in a winter warmer, but this has good balance. Ends bitter but on the wet side.

Mouthfeel - smooth and lightly crisp. Medium body, pretty ideal for the style.

Drinkability - a tasty winter brew from the good guys at RTB. Happy holidays, guys, and thanks for this seasonal easy drinker.

Photo of mrebeka
3.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of RedneckBeerz
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of Lukass
4.5/5  rDev +23.6%

Photo of macrosmatic
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of JimmyFlatRock
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of Ryan011235
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an E&J Cask & Cream glass (poured the second half of the bottle into a snifter at the suggestion of the label)

Dull amber color that has enough depth to look a bit like a jar of honey. The puffy, two finger head didn't last long, thinning to an slight, lasting layer after a few minutes. No lace.

This smells like a big old gingerbread cookie. Hints of cinnamon bread underneath. Earthy hops & nutty undertones. Smells good as far as spices go; maybe too much for a beer. Imagine incense sticks prior to being burnt, only good.

Spices are similarly strong to taste; lots of cinnamon & ginger. Eh, they don't seem quite as strong as the nose; perhaps this is due to a more prominent bread notion that envelops said spices. Toasty & dry. Some earthy hops without much bitterness.

The feel is an appropriate medium body yet retains a nimble quality (at least before multiple swigs begin adding layer of lingering spices). The spices impart a sharp dryness which makes for a granular feel, as if over saturated with cinnamon & such. Carbonation is reasonably low & doesn't over-assert the spices. The finish is, no big surprise, dry & wrought with spices.

In the past I haven't been one to gravitate toward overly-spiced beers such as this. However, as far as spiced winter ales go this is easily drinkable & pretty enjoyable. Easily the best I've had from Rivertown.

Photo of secondtooth
3.85/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clean amber in appearance with moderate carbonation and only light lacing.

Nose is curious -- caramel, molasses, cinnamon, candy sugar. Unusual and unique, and certainly not bad!

Taste is another revelation. I get molasses again, taking me back to my youth, enjoying molasses cookies from the local bake shop. Body is heavy here, with a heavy malt presence and an almost coffee cake vibe.

Overall, this is a very enjoyable experience, like no other beer I've ever had.

Photo of bigbluebeerguy
3.18/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a mug. Deep amber in color, with more ruby highlights around the edges. 1 & 1/2 finger off white head that recedes quickly to a spotty layer and no lacing.

Nose is almost predominantly cinnamon, with touches of cooked apple and molasses.

Taste is very much following the nose, with the sugar & spice hitting the tongue first, along with some toasted bread. Unfortunately, there is a very off-putting tartness in the middle that seems out of place. Mildly drying on the finish.

Medium body and carbonation, finishing dry and a little sticky on the tongue.

Overall I'm not impressed. This is the 3rd or 4th offering I've had from this brewery and I've been underwhelmed by each of them. All seem to come out a little thin and bland. Too many good breweries out there for me to keep giving this one another shot. Sorry Rivertown.

Photo of schoolboy
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Alright Rivertown! This one works. I know I haven't liked all of their stuff, but this one is very OK. I would definitely buy it again.

As you want in a winter warmer, this has a nice bunch of spice taste. A nice mix of spices, actually, and somewhat unique. The malt and hops characteristics do not seem as complex or interesting, but the are inoffcensive and it is very drinkable. It doesn't taste boozy in the least.

Photo of rorjets
3.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Beejay
3.73/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Slightly Hazy, the color is a dark amber with red hues when held to the light. The head is thick and tan.

S: You can definitely pick up the cinnamon. Not as sharp as some cinnamon can get. Sweet with a nice spice back.

T: Sweet at first with a nice strong hit from the cinnamon. There is a nice bready quality to this as well. The finish has a bit of a bitter hit from the hops. Nice overall.

M: Medium in body, fairly high carbonation, and a bit slick on the feel.

D: Good, but a bit of a holiday/ cinnamon lovers beer. I enjoy it, but it is not something I am going to do a night of. Bet it would be wicked to cook with too!

Photo of bzach
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of grahamboudreaux
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of bamadog
3.43/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well, I guess I'll give Rivertown another shot. Review is from notes taken on 12/30/2010 and poured from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pour is a dark coppery color with some burnt orange aspects to it; starts with a scant 1/4 finger off-white head that fades immediately to nothing other than a thin pond of skim and a thin ring around the surface; body is very clear and shows some faint carbonation;

Smell: OK, we've got quite a bit of warm and spicy cinnamon in there, and perhaps even a hint of some cocoa; a bit of toasty and grainy barley as well.

Taste: Yep, lots of cinnamon -- I like cinnamon and all, but this may be a little bit overdone -- still though, not too bad; beyond the cinnamon, I do believe there is just a touch of cocoa (probably from some chocolate malt?); bit of a slight, toasty graininess underneath it. Overall, it's one of the more drinkable RTB beers, but not something to go out of your way to get.

Mouthfeel: Body is just lighter than medium in weight, and the carbonation is much better in the mouth than one would think based upon looking at it; a moderately thick, semi-dry and very sticky coating is left all over the roof of the mouth; the gums are left a little tingly from the carbonation, and the belly is left warm from the slightly overdone cinnamon.

Drinkability: I can handle one or two of these, but the spiciness does become more overbearing as I continue to drink it, and it tastes kind of like freshly ground cinnamon has been poured into it... for RTB, it's good, for other and better established breweries, it would be subpar.

Photo of PDXHops
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle courtesy of Ryan011235, poured into a Duvel tulip (back in February). Hazy amber with a short lived bubbly head and nada in the way of lacing.

The advertised cinammon and molasses are certainly present in the nose, along with a generous helping of bready malt and a citrusy undertone of citrus. Hints of toast and chocolate, too. Tastes more or less like I expected. I'm not a huge fan of huge spicing in winter warmers, but a decent sting of bitterness and ample carbonation seem to keep the cinammon in check here. Pretty nice depth of flavor; I especially dig the earthy hops in contrast with the tangy molasses. The bready and toasty malts don't take the molasses overboard. Better than your average spiced beer for sure.

Photo of BB1313
3.3/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a transparent copper; not much head and lacing, but nice color and retention. The aromas are very faint and only start to develop as the beer warms up. It's not that the aromas are bad, they're just too subtle. It doesn't really smell like it tastes. The flavors are pretty good though. Cinnamon is the main ingredient, and I think they did a great job with the spices. I've had alot of beers brewed with cinnamon, but none have tasted like this. The spices taste very raw and grainy. There's some ginger in nutmeg in the mix as well. There's a spicy bitterness. Mouthfeel is ok, pretty spritzy and on the lighter side. Reguardless, it still drinks pretty smooth. Alcohol goes unnoticed.

I wasn't sure what to expect, this was my first time having something from Rivertown. I do like this, although it has flaws. But at the end of the day it does taste good.

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Winter Ale from Rivertown Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 107 ratings.