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Christmas Ale - West Sixth Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Christmas AleChristmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

57 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 57
Reviews: 9
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 9.11%
Wants: 2
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
West Sixth Brewing Company visit their website
Kentucky, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: KingKat on 12-04-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 57 | Reviews: 9 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by McUbermensch:
Photo of McUbermensch
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.21/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

With a ton of anticipation, West Sixth wishes Kentucky a Merry Christmas in a big way- 9.0% alcohol in fact! Where many of their "flagship" beers have been accused of appealing to a mass audience; their Christmas Ale is meant for the connoisseur!

Pouring with a taunting viscosity, its like ominous eggnog as it crawls out of the can. Dark brown with embedded ribbons of garnet and crimson, a regdish tone transpires. As the ale patiently separates its rich body from its dark lather, the notion that this is going to be a sipper sets in. Its long lasting moussy head trails with a smattering of spotty lace in the beer's wake.

Its toasty sweet aromas are expected, but soon after the nose makes nice with its maltiness, here come the spices! Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger and clove are the usual suspects that peak from behind its malty shield. Developing into well-melded scent, other aromas abound: drunken fruits, spiced rum, fruicake and little gingerbread men all conjure memories of childhood Christmases- yep, even the rum! Love you Mama!

As the malt sweetness saturates the palate, its taste is of black-strap molasses, heavy toast, coffee, bittersweet chocolate and lightly peated scotch. Its fruit and spice medley really opens up across its long middle palate: Cherries, blackcurrant, figs, dates, plumbs, blackberry, raisins, red grapes, apples, orange peels and a hint of prune all express the beer's estery tone while its balance of dessert-type spices act as a ballast to its sweet and fruity upstart. As the ale turns to finish, its rummy spice flavor pulls from the maltiness of gingerbread and continues to satisfy the sweet tooth deep into its finish.

No doubt, the beer is full-bodied despite its dryish spice and warming alcohol. Its early carbonation weaves into its residual sweetness for a decadant and creamy feel that keeps its bready-sweet textures hanging on. About the time you think you'll need a fork and knive to finish the beer, its spicy and boozy character slices right through the beer's body and signals its closure. A deep and lingering aftertaste keeps its savory and spicy flavors alive for complete enjoyment for the most lengthy session. Relax and enjoy- this beer really opens up as it warms and reveals a plethora of complexity.

As I dive deep into the flavors of West Sixth Christmas Ale, I get a lot of Scottish "Wee Heavy" flavor from the base beer underneath the spice, except its got an English Barleywine tone and sense of power. Despite the ale's massive alcohol content, it is remarkably smooth because of its malt structure and its spicy balance. But take your time, this is a patient session- for the palate, stomach and the mind- too quickly and you'll be seeing in Santa Claus again!

Photo of sabitu
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Shagator
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Jason
3.96/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz can with no freshness date.

Dark, opaque, stable tan lacing. Smells of molasses, brownines, mild spicing, figgy, & faint caramel. Bold maltiness, mild roastiness, dark chocolate, full bodied, sweet, balanced cinnamon and nutmeg, dark fruit, hay, toasty, finished slightly dry.

This is a big winter seasonal, impressive all around as the spicing is at a perfect level and the rest of the flavors mesh well together.

Photo of NoetheMatt
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of juicebox
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of heystevec
3.91/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of KYGunner
4.14/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Deep raisin brown coloring gives it a black hued body but it lightens just a touch at the edges. The head was stout and thick with a nice coat of lace that did not stick to the glass.

The aroma is spicy at first sniff with a ginger and nutmeg profile. The back end is thicker with molasses and dried fruit but a tinge of booze.

The flavor is well balanced with just enough spice. The ginger and nutmeg support the overall malty flavor of caramel, molasses, raisin, date, prune and grain.

The feel is so smooth, almost viscous and thick, with a low carbonated feel but a bit of winter warmth.

West Sixth has hit a home run here with an ale that is different than their normal fare and perfect for the season.

Photo of JustinSparks
3/5  rDev -21.9%

Photo of Magery
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.41/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours to a deep warm dark mahagony brown body. Head is a biscuity light brown in tone. Head stands at just about and inch and fades to a skim in a couple of minutes. Just a skim is left behind but very little lace.

Nose is perfect for a Christmas ale laced with tons of nutmeg, clove and cinnamon. A bit of sweet malt is there as well. The smell just screams Christmas.

This beer is rich, flavorful and has wonderful depth of flavor. Dark fruits dance with brown sugar and a ton of spices. So many times these styles of beers are so overpowering with spices they are off putting, but not here. There is a wonderful balance to this beer between spice, dark fruit and sweet malt. So appropriate for the style.

Mouthfeel is comfortably thick and satisfying. The 9% alcohol is hidden incredibly well. I have found one of my favorite Christmas ales. I would love to try the Bourbon Barrel aged version of this brew.

Photo of BuckTuckian
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of fleurdelou
3.84/5  rDev 0%

Photo of gspeicher
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of CraftBeerSnob
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of crbnfbr
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of PassMeAZima
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of catfan2000
3/5  rDev -21.9%

Photo of midnightcowboy818
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of raisethejollybrewer
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%

Photo of threedaggers
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of jman005
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of KingKat
4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, thin head that dissipates quickly, no discernible lacing.

Spices predominate in the smell, mostly clove, some cinnamon and nutmeg.

Taste pretty much follows smell, plus some heat, hop bitterness follows.

Aftertaste is mostly bitter, slightly metallic.

Haven't had that many of this style, my favorite is Great Lakes Christmas Ale. This isn't quite as good but is very tasty.

Photo of beb86
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

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Christmas Ale from West Sixth Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 57 ratings.