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Gingerbread Stout - Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Gingerbread StoutGingerbread Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

488 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 488
Reviews: 94
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 10.96%


Brewed by:
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed with baby ginger from Casselmonte Farm and wildflower honey from Bearer Farms, Hardywood Gingerbread Stout captures the terroir of central Virginia in a rich, creamy libation with a velvety mouthfeel and an intriguing evolution of flavors from milk chocolate and vanilla to honeycomb and cinnamon to a snap of ginger in the finish.

Deep, dark chocolate in color with a mahogany tint and a frothy, caramel colored head, Hardywood Gingerbread Stout offers aromatics of holiday spice originating from the ginger, and balanced with a generous dose of whole Madagascar bourbon vanilla beans and Vietnamese cinnamon. Milk sugar (lactose) contributes to the full body of this stout and tames its roasty character, while oats lend a silky quality. Enjoy fresh, or cellar for a special occasion. We hope Hardywood Gingerbread Stout contributes to your merriment this season.

55 IBU

(Beer added by: TechTriumph on 12-08-2011)
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Ratings: 488 | Reviews: 94 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of JMScowcroft
JMScowcroft

Vermont

4.54/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hardywood Park Craft Brewery - Gingerbread Stout, poured into a Lawson's tulip.

Look - Pours a medium viscosity oil brown and settles jet black with 1" off-white soapy head that dissipates quickly and leaves splotchy lacing.

Smell - Chocolate, coffee, and roasted malts w/ginger and cinnamon. Sweet finish. The key here and with this brew in general is to let it warm up a bit, leave the bottle out for 30 minutes or so if it was in the fridge, TRUST ME.

Taste - Creamy chocolate w/cinnamon and finishes ginger. Nearly perfect blend of sweet and spice.

Mouthfeel - Heavy-medium bodied from the lactose with medium carbonation. Rests spice both ginger and cinnamon toasty but not overdone. Some roast sits on the middle of the tongue. Nice and toasty warm boozy.

Overall - Great brew, a nice mix of holiday spice (Winter Warmer types) and a tasty creamy milk stout. Spice is spice but this is NICE!

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2013 22:17:49 | More by JMScowcroft
Photo of Zraly
Zraly

Virginia

4.39/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2013 Vintage. Bought this last night (11/15) at the pre-release sale at the brewery. Bought the glass to go along with it and am using that for tonight's drinking.

Pours black with a a two-finger head. Looks great and as a stronger stout should. Smell upfront is quite subdued but opens up a bit more as it warms. Chocolate wrappers, cinnamon and ginger come forward.

Layer upon layer of flavor. Starts off with a very apparent chocolate note. The chocolate takes a turn and morphs into vanilla bean, which then tops off with cinnamon and a sharp ginger finish. Sweet but not cloying. Well-balanced. Medium to medium-full bodied. The mouthfeel is so good it makes me mad: creamy silk that lets the ginger linger on it way too easily. I cannot emphasize enough that the snappy ginger in the finish is very nice and is reminiscent of a gingersnap cookie.

Extremely good imperial milk stout that would be criminal with any vanilla-based desserts. Interestingly, though, I paired mine with a roast pork loin that was baked with a maple-cinnamon-cayenne blend. The pan drippings were then deglazed with rum and butter. I served this up with creamy parmesan grits and braised cabbage. It was surprisingly good and I would suggest not limiting yourself to dessert only. Of course, by itself, this can carry its own weight if you just want to let it shine on its own.

As an aside, I would be interested in what Hardywood could do with the base of this beer. That is, what does their straightforward milk stout taste like? It seems like it is structured around a very solid milk stout formula and that could be interesting for a year-round offering. I really appreciate big beers or experimental beers that, underneath, remain relatively true to style. I feel as though GBS has that quality to it.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2013 00:42:34 | More by Zraly
Photo of dtivp
dtivp

West Virginia

4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very deep near black brown with a creamy one finger head that fades, very light lacing.

Aroma of roasted malt, ginger and a hint of cinnamon.

Taste of ginger, dark malt, cinnamon with a slight honey sweetness. As the beer warms the gingerbread dominates the taste.

Mouth Feel is medium body with light to moderate carbonation. Creamy and smooth.

Overall this was a very good stout, highly recommend it, if you can find it. I look forward to drinking this one again.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2013 21:54:35 | More by dtivp
Photo of cichief
cichief

Virginia

4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on draft at Mekong in Richmond, VA. It pours a beautiful dark ruby red, almost black with a deep brown head. Smells of vanilla and gingerbread, very sweet. Although sweet, it is well balanced and has a great finish. This is a wonderful dessert beer, and just a great beer overall. Very smooth, just enough carbonation. One of the best beers I've had this year!

Serving type: on-tap

12-18-2012 01:02:11 | More by cichief
Photo of BrewerB
BrewerB

Florida

4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Huge thanks goes to miikezombie for sending this my way. Apparently this one's quite highly rated here by both users and The Bros so I'm looking forward to it. Despite the recommendation of a pint glass, I'm pouring this 9.2% ABV stout into a snifter from Cigar City. Dark brown/black in color with a thick mousse-like light tan head. Ginger comes up quickly in the aromas with cinnamon and a touch of vanilla. There's a picture of a gingerbread cookie on the label and they certainly nailed the aroma. More of this cookie-like quality comes through in the flavor with cinnamon taking a bigger leap forward. Still lots of ginger. Milk chocolatey. Certainly hop flavor was an afterthought here though there's enough bitterness to keep things from going off-track. Silky velvety texture with sufficient carbonation. While it may be 5 months past Christmas this is still tasting fantastic. Certainly one I'd like to revisit again down the road, perhaps in the appropriate time of year and a tad closer to bottling.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2013 05:24:23 | More by BrewerB
Photo of siege06nd
siege06nd

Virginia

4.65/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to the brewmasters, who very graciously traded me a bottle of this to try...

Poured into a Hardywood Snifter...

A. Pitch dark, tarry, oily black. The head is pillowy and aggressive, a good two and a half fingers from a careful pour. It's medium brown in color, but effervesces to dark brown with a quick swirl. Pretty good creamy, consistent head on this. Really nice. Lacing is some of the thickest and most consistent I have seen in recent memory. As perfect as it comes.

S. Milk chocolate, cocoa powder, brown sugar, bread crust, and, yes, unmistakable ginger bread. I even get some mild, ripe dark fruit in the background. What's surprising to me is that the nose is not particularly strong. I really have to get my nose down into the glass to enjoy the full bouquet, but it's exactly like its name implies...gingerbread and chocolate. Excellent.

T. Chocolate, cream, some lactic kick. It starts out like a typical sweet stout, but then the ginger and roasted malt hit and boom: ginger-bread man with chocolate frosting. Wooow is this well-made, and very interesting. It's very sweet, but also very spicy. Like chocolate cake with gingerbread sprinkles. The taste on this is more of a dark chocolate profile. It's truly excellent. Standing ovation.

M. This is the only real deficiency I can find on this one...I think it's overcarbed. And it does it a disservice, but my mouth is so fizzy that it distracts from the amazing flavor profile. It also really takes away from what could be a much more cloying, coating mouthfeel to match the flavor.

O. Too bad about the mouthfeel, otherwise this would get a 5.0. Regardless, this beer is freakin' spectacular. A real achievement and a totally unique idea that Hardywood pulls off with aplomb. By far the best beer I have had from them and I can't wait for the bourbon treatment that is rumored to be making an appearance in the fall. It's not one I can say I would want a bottle of alone, so those of you who are wondering whether they should share this delicacy, I would recommend you absolutely open this with a friend as drinking this by itself would put you into a coma. That said, it is a great achievement. Nailed what they were going for. The hype is for real on this one, folks.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2012 23:10:33 | More by siege06nd
Photo of engagechad
engagechad

Virginia

4.6/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer at the Illumination event at the Brewery

Pours a very very dark brown with a nice tan head that sticks and drags. Very pretty brew. I had a tasting and a full pour.

Smells soooo good. I find it amazing that they were able to get the gingerbread smell while using actual ginger.. man.. incredible nose..

Taste follows, smooth and sillky while having the right prickles and tickles from some faint hop.

Feels great, ginger is there and it is awesome.

Overall this is a money stout guys. seek it out and get it.

Serving type: on-tap

12-13-2011 00:22:37 | More by engagechad
Photo of starrdogg
starrdogg

District of Columbia

4.33/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Been wanting to trying this for a long time, here we go.

Beer pours a dark brown/almost black with a fluffy tan head. There are a ton of bubbles, making it actually look almost like a glass of Coke. Smell is of winter baking spices primarily with some roasted malt in the background. I don't think I would think "gingerbread" based on the smell if this beer wasn't called what it is. That said, it smells quite nice. Flavor takes it to the next level, however, as I feel like I'm drinking a chocolatey gingerbread cookie. The same winter spices from the nose combine very nicely with the stout base to create something very tasty and well-done. It's sweet, but far from being overly so, and still maintains the roasty stout aspects of the beer without letting the spices take over - very nicely balanced. I get much more "gingerbread" in the flavor, though I still wonder if I would've come to that conclusion on my own. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with nice carbonation and works well for the beer. Overall, this isn't a beer I'd want to drink every day, but it's pretty damn impressive for what it is - a great, well-crafted, unique beer for the holidays.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2012 23:37:43 | More by starrdogg
Photo of MCain04
MCain04

Illinois

4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle, 2012 vintage, poured into a Surly Darkness tulip glass.

Pours a dark brown, with a large frothy beige head, good retention, some lacing.

Smells like cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread, other spices, some sweetness and toffee.

Taste is gingerbread and nutmeg, some milk chocolate and vanilla, nice spicy notes.

Mouthfeel is moderate to high carbonation, medium bodied, nice dry finish, a little too fizzy to be called smooth though.

Overall, this is probably better fresh, but is still a very solid spiced stout which is enjoyable by the fire on a nice cold night.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2013 03:43:41 | More by MCain04
Photo of mikeyv35
mikeyv35

New York

4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Date: 02/25/2013
Type: 750ml. Bottle
Glass: Southampton Tulip
Vintage: 2012

Pours a black in color w/ a 1 to 11/2 finger tan head that left medium lacing. Aromas of roasted chocolate, honey, ginger, and vanilla bean. The flavor is of a gingerbread cookie folded into layers of roasted chocolate notes w/ enough hop bite on the finish to prevent cloying. Medium bodied and very creamy and lush w/ a bit too much carbonation. Drank my 16oz. glass w/ ease as the ABV is not at all noticeable. This brew presents a liquified gingerbread cookie taste while maintaining the stout components which makes it a success.

Overall, a fantastic brew that tastes like what it was intended to taste like, a gingerbread cookie stout. After drinking this brew, The Boston Beer Co. should be ashamed of their horrid tasting Gingerbread Christmas Stout! This brew would be all-world if the carbonation was turned down a bit which was too high for my liking. The high carbonation keeps the beer from getting heavy and makes it more drinkable, but makes it too pillowy in the mouth for the rich flavors to grab hold and be enjoyed to their fullest. Anyway, I am glad I have 2 more bottles of this brew in transit to me as we speak, as I would gladly drink this again.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2013 09:16:44 | More by mikeyv35
Photo of TechTriumph
TechTriumph

Virginia

4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes on 12/28/12:
2012 Release (black cap/black cage)
Poured in a snifter.

A (4.5) - Over an inch of frothy tan head that lasts a long while; Very dark brown in color and approaching black; The lacing left behind is very impressive

S (4.5) - Pretty amazing aroma and never gets old; As close as beer can get to smelling like gingerbread; Though the ginger steals the show, other spices are present as well - cinnamon, clove, nutmeg; Deep, underlying chocolate and molasses

T (4.5) - Equally impressive compared to aroma; This is approaching liquid gingerbread territory - with a very subtle kick of alcohol; Overall flavor hits a nice harmony as the beer warms a bit; More on the sweet side up front with plenty of gingerbread cookie flavor and a touch of vanilla cookie frosting, as well as underlying milk chocolate; The addition of honey is a nice touch and noticeable; Sweetness fades towards the finish as molasses-like character steps forward with subtle roast

M (4.0) - Moderate carbonation; A bit above medium bodied; Not nearly as smooth as I remember from the previous year, but still good; Pleasant level of warmth in the semi-dry finish

O (4.5) - This is just a fantastic beer to enjoy during the holidays and is easily my first choice brew for Christmastime. I honestly think the overall package is better for the 2012 release as compared to the previous year (though the mouthfeel took a bit of a hit in my opinion). Gingerbread Stout definitely deserves the credit and recognition it's starting to receive. It even helped spark the interest of craft beer for a good friend of mine... I can't think of a better endorsement than that!
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From notes on 12/29/12:
2011 Release (gold cap/silver cage)
Poured in a snifter.

A (4.5) - Well over an inch of creamy tan head with excellent retention; Very dark brown in color with just a little light seeping through along the edges; Some scattered spots of lacing left here and there

S (4.5) - Ginger still has a presence, though it has faded big time; Quite a bit of caramelized and slightly burnt sugars; Somewhat tart dark-like fruits; Semi-sweet syrupy molasses and deep underlying chocolate; Smells similar to barleywine to me, minus any hops to speak of

T (4.0) - I actually detect less ginger in the taste than the aroma - it's just barely holding on with a light herbal-like presence; A lot of the character in the aroma is present here as well - lots of caramelized and somewhat burnt sugars; Faintly tart, but also sugary dark fruits - figs and plums, lightly dipped in rum; Quite a bit of molasses as well with hints of tobacco

M (4.5) - Carbonation held up well over a year - still moderate; Full bodied and coats the entire mouth big time - like a syrupy and somewhat sticky film all over; Finishes very similar to 2012 Bourbon GBS in that there's a very pleasant level of warmth that doesn't approach being too hot

O (4.0) - Well, I've heard both positive and negative opinions as to how GBS might age after one year, and have now finally found out for myself. As expected, the ginger spice did not win the battle against Father Time. What I didn't expect, but still rather enjoyed, was this beer's transformation into what I think most resembles a malty barleywine. The emergence of caramelized sugars, molasses, tobacco, and dark fruits is pretty fascinating. Having said all of this, I think GBS is without a doubt best consumed on the fresher side, though I'd still recommend trying it with some age if seeking out a different experience.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2012 15:19:21 | More by TechTriumph
Photo of stereosforgeeks
stereosforgeeks

Virginia

5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Deep dark brown/black color with a very nice head. Moderate carbonation. Nice head with moderate lacing.

Smell - Roasty chocolate, cinnamon, vanilla, ginger, pumpkin.

Taste - Chocolate gingerbread cookies. Simple as that. There are some nice vanilla notes in there as well, but you definitely feel like you are drinking a cookie without the super sugary tastes.

Mouthfeel - Silky smooth mouth feel. Moderate carbonation. The flavors stick around but there is no stickiness in the mouth.

Overall - Absolutely delicious. Way too easy to drink. It goes down like a dessert.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2012 03:47:04 | More by stereosforgeeks
Photo of stckhndlr
stckhndlr

Virginia

4.68/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A- this is pitch black. Wet sand color head. Light carbonation bubbles rising up the side of the glass.

S- boom! Big nose. Fresh ginger is the front runner. Some candied sugar. As simple as it seems it is complex. It really bombards the senses.

T- sweet ginger taste mixed with a malty molasses flavor. Tastes like a spicy gingersnap cookie. The spice lingers on the finish. As this warms up it begins to transform into a perfect gingerbread flavor. Absolutely spot on.

M- great full body. Creamy. Just the right amount of carbonation and spice on the tongue. As it warms it gets even creamier.

O- I only recommend this one if you are truly in love with ginger. Luckily I am so this beer is amazing. This one is perfect.

Serving type: on-tap

12-02-2013 17:59:55 | More by stckhndlr
Photo of rfbenavi80
rfbenavi80

Missouri

4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle received in a trade. Enjoyed with a friend. 2012 release.

A- Pours the darkest brown that you can get before it's called black with 1/2 finger of light tan head that slowly dissipates to a thin film.

S- Aroma seems very muted until it warms. Smells of warm winter cooking spices mixed with a solid amount of roasty chocolatey malt.

T- Wow, what this beer lacks in aroma it makes up for it in the taste. This is where the ginger shines through. Tastes like a warm gingerbread man complete with icing and no hint of the 9.2% ABV present at all.

M- Smooth and creamy easy drinking. Hardly any carbonation at all.

O- A superb holiday beer. Would recommend to anyone. Even to non-beer drinkers.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2012 11:29:46 | More by rfbenavi80
Photo of Beerisheaven
Beerisheaven

Pennsylvania

4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Decided to throw my hat into the ring as well and get on board the Hardywood train. Thanks to Gorilla Fist Brewing and Funkybottoms for hooking me up.

A- Pours nicely into my Selinsgrovebrewing snifter. Dark brown cola color with a slowly building head that is a little late to the party but sticks around after showing up fashionably late.

S- Slightly muted considering all the possibilities here. You get it but just not to the level anticipated.

T- Wow, this is wonderful. Lovely combination of ginger, vanilla, chocolate, and cinnamon. Pushes the limits and could be on the verge of being too sweet but it never gets there. This beer is the perfect holiday beverage to have around the fire or with a nice piece of holiday pie. On every level, I thought this was fantastic.

M- very satisfying, a little carbed but still is acceptable.

O- I was wondering if this was going to be hype but I think this is a wonderful and perfect beer for what they were looking to do. I am immediately going out to look for more in trade, it was that good.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2012 23:13:07 | More by Beerisheaven
Photo of ThePaleRider
ThePaleRider

California

4.31/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A - Rich coffee brown, with a think tan head that disappears but leaves a nice ring around the glass. Decent legs on the glass.

S - Nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, almost reminds me of a pumpkin pie.

T - Very smooth! Spices aren't nearly as overwhelming as they smell. Very nice cinnamon and cloves. Very sweet malts compliment the spices. Extremely drinkable for a spiced beer.

M - Pretty light and smooth for a stout. Leaves a nice sweet finish on the tongue with very little carbonation.

O - I can really understand the hype behind this beer. Especially coming out of VA, a state that's just getting started in the craft brew world.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2014 00:05:17 | More by ThePaleRider
Photo of standardcherry
standardcherry

Massachusetts

4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle thanks to Shilt! Served into a snifter.

A: Pours a dark brown but not completely black. Has a nice, big tan colored head.
S: Smell is spot on! Lots of ginger, vanilla, cinnamon, honey. Reminds me of a gingerbread cookie and creme brulee for some reason. Very nice.
T: I thought it would be overly sweet but it's very nice! Subtle ginger, vanilla, chocolate all blended into a perfectly balanced sweetness. Semi-bitter dark chocolate in the aftertaste.
M: Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Alcohol is well hidden. Carbonation gives a nice, crisp finish.
O: This beer is excellent, I am now on the lookout for the barrel aged version!

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2013 02:23:12 | More by standardcherry
Photo of TWStandley
TWStandley

Massachusetts

4.65/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a brandy snifter - shared with some family on Xmas.

Poured a dark brown color with minimal head. Didn't appear too carbonated. A bit thinner than I expected it to look.

Smell is awesome. Often times beers that are classified as a certain "smell/taste" don't exactly hit it spot on. This one does. Ginger and cinnamon, allspice and cloves. Christmas in a bottle.

Taste follows the smell relatively closely. Delicious ginger and cinnamon upfront. Not too overpowering or spicy. Alcohol content undetectable. Well balanced. Awesome!

Hardywood hit the "Gingerbread" spot on. If I could throw gingerbread into a blender, ferment it, and bottle it...this would be the outcome (though not as easy...). Well done.

Don't go into this expecting a heavy, bold stout. It is quite a bit thinner and more subdued.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2012 19:18:11 | More by TWStandley
Photo of mnphish
mnphish

Minnesota

4.61/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Consumed on Xmas! Thanks to CincyTrigger for sending me this.

Dark brown/black appearance with a the icing of a cinnamon role as the head. The aroma is of holiday spices, vanilla, loads of ginger, cinnamon, and milk chocolate.

The taste is spot on and this is an absolute knock-out. Extremely balanced spices give away to a delicious fresh ginger taste. There is lots of cinnamon present taboot.

This is an outstanding beer fresh. I will seek to consume this on every Christmas from here on out.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2013 22:26:01 | More by mnphish
Photo of circus_cat
circus_cat

Virginia

4.95/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

THIS. THIS. THIS.

The lactose sugars and rich chocolatey, coffee malt characteristics provide an incredibly smooth, velvety base for the vanilla, toffee, and molasses-like honey that springs forward. Then that ginger punch at the end that just lingers around after the silky finish just makes it perfect. This is the first overall 5 I've given and I did it without thinking twice. If you're lucky enough to swing through Richmond during the winter of see the opportunity to get this in a trade, don't you dare pass it up.

Serving type: on-tap

11-17-2013 14:41:37 | More by circus_cat
Photo of smokeypeat
smokeypeat

Maryland

4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep dark brown, almost black. Huge beige head on this one that is slow to die down. I got at least a three finger head out of it much more than a lot of stouts.

Smell is baking spices mixed with roast. Some molasses and cinnamon with bakers chocolate. Not getting a lot of ginger in the smell which is a little surprising.

Wow, taste is right up there. I'm not sure where all that ginger was in the aroma, but it is really prevalent on the first sip. Ginger, milk chocolate, spicy rye bread, nutmeg. It really is like a cookie, with a background sweetness present the whole time. Pretty wild, never had a beer like this before.

Mouthfeel is great. Good level of carbonation to deliver all the flavor. It's got a full body, but its not overly "sticky".

Overall this beer delivered a really unique experience. I'd love to know the recipe of this one to see how they pulled it all off. I would think this would be a really easy beer to screw up, but they have brought it all together to make a great holiday beer. Can't wait to crack one of these again on Christmas eve.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2012 20:28:16 | More by smokeypeat
Photo of maxk
maxk

Massachusetts

4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had a 10oz pour at Joe's Inn in Richmond. I went to the brewery as their website said they were still tasting GBS but they had just run out. Review is from notes.

A dark mahogany color, bordering on black. Very little head which quickly settled into nothingness.

Smells of ginger, honey, molasses, tiny bit of vanilla, and cream. Imagine the aroma of gingerbread in the oven, with a hint of booze.

It lives up to the hype. Tastes more or less like it smells. Lots of honey and milk sweetness, followed by heavy ginger. I get a little cinnamon spice rounding out the ginger.

Creamy and rich. I found the beer relatively heavy and filling. Still, considering the taste, it seemed like it could have benefitted from a little bit more thickness.

Overall, I was impressed. I went to Richmond with the hopes of getting to try this and a bunch of other Hardywood beers and I was not disappointed. One of the best tasting Christmas/spiced beers I've ever had.

Serving type: on-tap

12-24-2012 00:35:16 | More by maxk
Photo of rudolphjacksonm
rudolphjacksonm

Virginia

4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in an imperial pint glass on 12/18/11. Made with Bearer Farms Honey (local!).

A - Completely opaque black with a dark tan head. Amazing head retention and lacing clinging the whole way down the glass. Beautiful looking stout! 5.0

S - Malt, molasses, allspice and, of course, gingerbread. Possibly a hint of bread or fig. 4.5

T - Wow. Very sweet and instantly tastes of a fresh-baked gingerbread man. Polishes off with honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice. Hint of coffee as well midway through. Finish is very subtle and not too bitter, but with enough hoppy flavor to balance the initial sweetness. Man, this is exceptional! 5.0

M - Somewhat heavy-bodied but very little carbonation to speak of. Incredibly easy to drink. I do wish it was a bit thicker. 4.0

O - Oh Hardywood, how I love you. This new Hardywood Reserve Series is absolutely amazing. I'm just sad it'll only be around for the holidays. The gingerbread and honey flavor is fantastic, and it's perfectly complimented by all of its other parts. This is an exceptional brew that everyone should try. 4.5

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2011 21:15:43 | More by rudolphjacksonm
Photo of ncaudle
ncaudle

Virginia

4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

poured from cask into snifter.

pours a very dark brown, almost black with a tiny little head. little bit of lacing as you drink. typical cask.

cinnamon and ginger dominate the nose followed by the sweetness of honey and finishing with some chocolate and coffee notes. the spices stand out even more on the taste. the milk stout base sweetness helps balance it out a bit. the 9+% alcohol hides really well.

nice, creamy feel. how a cask should be.

I've now had this in every serving form with cask my favorite. it's a very good stout but my only complaint is maybe that the cinnamon/ginger is a touch too up front, at least fresh.

will be very curious as to how this ages/mellows...

Serving type: cask

12-27-2011 15:41:35 | More by ncaudle
Photo of brother_kenneth
brother_kenneth

Virginia

4.83/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle, poured into the GBS goblet/snifter, Christmas Eve night.

A- Dark brown in color, and looks somewhat thin for a stout. Very little head, which disappears very quickly.

S- Absolutely delicious smell. Lots of ginger and cinnamon. Also, some allspice, nutmeg, etc. There may be a hint of alcohol in the nose as well.

T- Just like the aroma. It is remarkable how well the ginger comes through. This is seriously like eating a slice of gingerbread. Loads of cinnamon, honey, ginger, and other spices. This is an incredibly unique, albeit delicious milk stout. Very, very sweet, and hardly no alcohol heat at all. Lighter body than most stouts, but has a wonderful milky and creamy mouth feel; minimal carbonation.

O- This will forever be my favorite Christmas beer. I will be attending the release every single year from now on. Don't pass on this one, folks. It is a delicious and unique stout. My wife got sick on Christmas Eve night, so I drank the entire 750mL bottle by myself. Loved every minute of it!

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2012 01:31:11 | More by brother_kenneth
Gingerbread Stout from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
95 out of 100 based on 488 ratings.