Wasatch Winterfest - Utah Brewers Cooperative

Not Rated.
Wasatch WinterfestWasatch Winterfest

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

113 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 113
Reviews: 64
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 10.57%
Wants: 6
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Utah Brewers Cooperative visit their website

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  7.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bitterbill on 11-29-2008

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (77) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 113 | Reviews: 64
Reviews by Pegasus:
Photo of Pegasus
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear reddish amber, with a small, dense, and quite persistent tan head. The lacing is glass-coating and fine beaded.

Aroma: Lots of pine hops and caramel, in equal measures.

Taste: Opens with a burst of moderate pine hops, soon followed by a very sturdy caramel malt presence. There is a flavor of dark bread as well. As the taste progresses, sweet alcohol flavors are also notable. Finishes with a long drawn-out hop note which is balanced by lingering caramel.

Mouth feel: Velvety soft, with modest carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: A very pleasing and drinkable example, well-suited to colder weather.

Presentation: Packaged in a standard twelve-ounce brown glass long-neck bottle with a twist-off crown, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Jason
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date.

LOOK: Dark chestnut brown, two fingers of head stays for a while

SMELL: Caramel, cake batter, toasted bread, ripe peaches, dired grass, faint alcohol, wild flowers

TASTE: Toasted grain, smooth, semi-creamy, dried grass, slightly roasty, bitter hop, dried plums, warming alcohol, brown sugar, faint hop spiciness, roasty semi-dry finish.

A solid winter seasonal, hits all the right spots ... warming alcohol, toasty-roasty character & a kiss of complexity. No spicing and pretty damn drinkable.

Photo of Mora2000
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours a reddish-brown color with a tan head. The aroma is very malty with some caramel and toffee notes. There is also some dark fruit and quite a bit of alcohol, which is kind of surprising since the beer is only 7 percent. The flavor is hoppier than the aroma. I get some pine and grass notes from the hops and also some toffee and caramel malt. There is also some dark cherry in the flavor. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. While there is quite a bit going on, the flavors don't really seem to meld all that well together and as a result, the beer falls a bit short.

Photo of dbossman
3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark amber with a steady but thin light tan head--foamy; lacing is good

S: Fairly muted but a nice carmelized malt quality--a bit of candied sugars; all on top of a citrus-like hop presence

T: Decent pine and citrus hop presence on top of a dry malt backbone; fairly simple and subdued but some spicy cloves shine through

F: Nice mouth feel and carbonation--beer evaporates off the back of the mouth

D: A decent little beer and drinkable

Photo of lawlerj
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.

A - pours a translucent brownish amber; big bubbly, off white head. NIce lacing, decent head retention. A very impressive looking beer. Very good.

S - biscuity malt, buttery toffee, and herbal and fruity hops. Very delicious smelling - a hint of booze in the mix as well.

T - a touch of bitterness up front, opening up to the rich biscuity malt. Brown sugar and dark fruit in the mix as well.

M - full bodied, crisp, well carbonated. Very nice.

O - overall, a great winter beer. A bit of that warming character that I enjoy. I'll be coming back to this.

Photo of HalfFull
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A deep ruby pour into a pint glass from a 12 oz. bottle. Somewhat sparkly with regards to carbonation yet otherwise quite clear. An inch of dense light tan foam rests atop the pour and lingers nicely. Initially I fought for said foam but alas it was hard to contain in the end, and offered good lacing on the glass.

Some caramel malts on the nose acquiesce in short order to pine and citrus hop notes along with a bit or toasted grain.

Moderate hops and neutral malts on the tongue initially with a light caramel finish. A good carbonation carries through the palate. Malt notes intensify a bit as the head settles, which does take some time, and become darker in nature offering a bit of chocolate and brown sugar on the finish with a slightly drying hop nature. Said carbonation works well with the brew and offers a good feel and drink.

Was a bit at odds with this beer initially, thinking it a 'Winter Warmer', but as a 'Amer. Strong Ale' it fits the bill nicely, particularly given how hop forward it is.

Photo of beveritt
4.11/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go out to wasatch for this one.

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Label depicts a snow covered mountain range on a predominantly blue toned label. No freshness date but I imagine it is at least 4-5 months old.

Appearance: Pours with 3 fingers of medium tan head. This settles slowly to a still substantial 1/2 finger of foam, leaving behind nearly complete lacing coverage. acing continues as I drink, with a distinct ring at each pause between sips. The beer itself is a deep, perfectly clear mahogany. No sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Slightly sweet caramel malt with nutty undertones. Hop bitterness in the finish.

Taste: Bready malt upfront with a slight caramel sweetness. Mild hop bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Slightly lower than average carbonation level. Body is good.

Drinkability: A nice sipper, I imagine great for a cold Utah winter. So many good beers out there, such poor distribution channels.

4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: fairly clear, dark amber, nice long lasting off white head

smell: caramel, malt with a pellet hop aroma

Taste: bitter hops with caramel malts, clean flavor overall

mouthfeel: soft, medium bodied

Drinkability: I could definitely enjoy a few of these, nice balance between the hops and malt

Born on: rubbed off, purchased at brewery

Served in burgandy glass at 50F

Photo of ocelot2500
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear garnet color with a frothy off-white head that leaves chunks of lacing.

Smells of sweet roasted notes with some fruit.

Tastes of sweet fruits and roasted notes. Fruits have a fig and raisin character. Roasted notes lie in the middle with some toasted bread and toffee with a bit of chocolate. Ends in a citrusy and herbal bitterness that ties everything together.

Mouthfeel is medium-full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, I find this very enjoyable and it was quite a surprise compared to the rest of the Wasatch beers I have had. This is definitely one to check out if you're in the mood for something rich and sweet.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz from my recent trade with Wasatch... I love it when I get Utah brews from John.. I know they are gonna be fresh. Poured into my shaped SA glass.

Easy 2 finger head lasted for a looong time. Tons of crusty lace and a meringue like cap that lasted the entire glass... the brew is crystal clear deep chestnut..

I am blown away by the nose.. I was expecting toasty malts and subdued hops.. Instead.. I was greeted with a big blast of citrus hops .. some caramel malts are there.. but play waaay second or third fiddle...

The flavor is much more in line with a winter brew.. but wow.. I am still reeling from the hoppiness.. The hops are met with a great nutty and only mild chocolate malt presence.. surprising hop bitterness.. caramel essence without the sweetness is hit with a nice punch in the mouth from citric hops.. I am trying to remember a brew that the Wasatch Winterfest reminds me of.. I am coming up blank.. I can easily see how this could be a great Winter Warmer.. I prefer my hoppy brews on the dry side .. this one delivers.. it tastes very fresh.. The body is medium with a smooth creamy yet everpresent carbonation.. drinkability is fairly high just because I want another sip to describe what I am very much enjoying... the finish is long and hoppy with an underground nutty component that keeps me coming back..

Wow John.. The Utah brewers are hitting them out of the park lately.. This is a great brew that should be in anybody's fridge in a cold winters night.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was a damn good beer, I just have to get that out of the way. I recieved this one along with the rest of my nice collection of utah beers recenetly and I thought they were all gone till I pulled this one out. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, it was consumed on 01/31/2009.

The pour was very nice. Rich copper colored amber with lots of reddish tint mixed in throughout. Nice clarity and some small carbonation coming up through the glass. Nice head of white on top settled down quickly and led to a thin covering of lace. The aroma was loaded with pine hops. Lots of nice balance though with hints of cinnamon and spices mixing in quite well. Lots of resin filled hops in on the flavor. Very smooth with with a nice medium boided feel that was very well placed. Well hidden alcohol was not much of an issue at all, in fact very drinkable and went down a bit too quickly.

Overall a very solid beer that was much different then what I was expecting. Solid hoppy strong ale that I would not turn down again.

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.75/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wasatch Winterfest has a thick, frothy, tan head, a clear, reddish-brown appearance, bubble streams, and a lot of heavy, splotchy lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of fruit and brown bread crust. Taste is the same, with caramel, toffee, and a very nice, pleasant hop bitterness coming in at the middle and staying through the end. Mouthfeel is medium to full, and Wasatch Winterfest finishes mostly dry, smooth, and delicious. The alcohol warmth kicks in in the throat and stomach as one drinks it down. This is the best winter seasonal I think I’ve ever tried. I rate it quite high. Get some!


Photo of twiggamortis420
3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle with a born on date of 02/03/11. Pours a rich brown color with a large froth of dense, creamy head. Retention is good, but lacing is downright gorgeous. Great looker. Bonus points for having a clear bottling date code, thanks Wasatch!

Nose is piney and citric with a minty, chocolate maltiness that is interesting. Smells like lots of hops were used here.

Nice use of flavoring and bittering hops with a lighter-than-expected malt bill. Roast and chocolate are there, but it could use some more body and even some sweetness would not be amiss. Not bad, perhaps a fresher sample might be better, but one would assume a 7% winter warmer would hold up for at least 5 months or so. It just feels a bit thin for the style. Id consider buying a sixer around Christmas if I saw it around, pretty easy drinking and the hops are nice as well as the lack of over-the-top spice additions found in many a winter seasonal.

Photo of Zorro
3.51/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Clear brown colored ale with a tall light brown colored head.

Smell is malty and hoppy with a little spice possibly spruce.

Starts out malty and sweet with a firm bitter finish. Lots of grapefruit and pine flavors with some cedar plank flavor. Faint spruce flavor.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a tasty winter beer with a strong hop bite.

Addendum: Friday 13th 2013 resample:

I detect a bit of cinnamon in the smell.

I definately taste strong spruce flavor and it is decidedly less bitter than I remembered it.

Not as sweet now as it seemed in 2011.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from Wasatch so a big "Thank You" goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, brown sugar, a good amount of hops and a little bit of fruit.

T: The taste starts out with sweet flavors of brown sugar, fruit and caramel that are quickly followed by a solid and complementary hops bitterness. The malt character is hearty and creates a good balance. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is very solid beer worth drinking for a long time.

Photo of jwc215
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wasatch for including this in a trade!

Pours mahogany with a rich tan head that has good staying power. Thin lines of lacing stick.

The smell is of caramel/toffee/nuts and citrus pine. Nice hop and malt aromas blend together. Not powerful, but very nice.

The taste is of caramel/toffee/nutty with a hop balance of grapefruit and pine. Both hops and malt show nicely and blend together well. It has a bittering, dry finish.

Close enough to full-bodied to work well. Carbonation stops just short of being a bit too much for the style, resulting in the benefit of the higher of two scores I had in mind, especially as it progresses.

Alcohol is well-covered in the aroma and taste. Comes across as easier-drinking than abv would have. Nice to see a well-hopped beer that still maintains a wintery maltiness. No spices here, either - so a good brew to just enjoy the maltiness and hoppiness of it. This hit the spot for me, and I probably enjoyed more than the individual parts/scores show.

Thanks again, John!

Photo of MrGraybeard
3.89/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a chilled bottle into a snifter glass. Clear mahogany, with a moderate, loose head that faded fairly quickly. Pronounced, balanced aroma with resin and malt evident.

Piney-citrus hops overpowers the malt at first, surprising for a winter ale. Malt shows up at midpalate, but IBUs prevail at the finish. With 7% alcohol, it's definitely a winter warmer.

I would have liked a more velvety mouthfeel from this beer. Also, the hops were a little over the top; I checked the brewer's website, which said the ale used Columbus and Amarillo, apparently a proprietary strain. They're tasty, but I wish they had played more of a supporting role.

Photo of bmwats
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a footed tulip.

A: Medium brown. Pours a 1 finger, bubbly, brownish head. Settles quickly but not completely, leaving a smattering of foam on the surface, a thick beer ring, and some persistent residue. Substantial, dry beer ring lacing.

S: Roasted malt, a little molasses and raisin, and a bit of pecan.

T: Rye bread, peat, bitter pecan shell.

M: Thick and hearty. High alcohol is evident, kind of boozy. Pungent, lingering finish. Seems to improve as it warms.

D: Sipper.

Atmosphere is pretty good. Fair head, and thick persistent lacing. Nose is roasty with sweet and nutty components. Pungent grains, and bitterness. Overall, this is an pretty good quaff.

Photo of crusian
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from local bottle shop... though I find it sad that we can get brewpub beer from Utah distributed in texas, but not texas brewpub beer... ridiculous.

Pours a nice dark rich brown with about a half finger of head. Lacing clings to the side very nicely as it dissipates.
The nose is wonderful... very nice citrus aroma, of simcoe maybe... not what i expected at all. Dark fruits and a hint of roasted malts.

Taste is what is expected from the nose, some dark fruits, nice hop profile with some roasted malt back end. Reminiscent of Black metal with all the dark fruits, very nice. Let this one warm a bit, as the cold suppresses the flavor profile a lot.

Pretty solid brew by Wasatch.

Edit: first review was right after I had a double IPA. Went back the next day and tried this first, and am now a bit underwhelmed by it. the nose is strong still, but the flavor profile seems to be lacking now. The hops from the first beer last night seemed to bring out the dark fruits more. Lowered my rating a bit on the taste.

Photo of CHL
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I am seriously impressed with this beer. I only got one bottle from the Utah State Liquor store in December, thinking it was a spiced holiday ale.

Instead, it's a nice strong beer, with heavy light malts and a not-insignificant citrus and pine hop kick. It's not a novelty beer though (like their less rounded "Hop Rising"). It's very tasty and enjoyable.

I think this is my favorite Wasatch "high point" beer. I hope they still have it in stock in April.

Photo of FranklinLOLOL
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Look - a slight red hue, with a decent head.

Smell - hops, lots of it, not overwhelming, but enough not to be able to smell the other flavors dwindling in the glass

Taste - sweet, the hops first come in, and after the notes of carmels then alcohol

Drinkability - simple, yet elegant, extremely enjoyable and a seasonal treat very much anticipated

Serving type: bottle

Photo of cvstrickland
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12-ounce bottle from the 2008 batch, courtesy of Wasatch. Thanks, John!

In my Sam Adams shaped pint glass, Wasatch Winterfest is sparkling-clear and ruby-tinted copper in color. A soft, creamy cap of pale beige foam settles to a finger's thickness and completely coats the inner walls of the vessel with a fine, sticky film of lacing.

The aroma is malty and laced with tree fruits; smashed red apples, fresh plums, toasted nuts and a vaguely spicy note predominate.

The taste is mild and toasty with a mellow backing of toffee. An unobtrusive note of alcohol masquerading as fermenting apple abounds without overpowering the palate or the dusty dryness that nicely balances the brew.

The drink is medium-fullish in body with exceptionally fine carbonation. A very easy drinker considering the 7.1% ABV.

Photo of Douglas88
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from the Utah State Store, thanks Mikey. Pours a clear amber color with a medium tan head. The aroma is very nice; just heaps of hops in here, citrus flavors explode, some light caramel and spices also. The flavor is also great; initially bitter, grapefruit and other citrus-hop flavors, some light spices and a balanced is achieved by a strong and rich caramel malt. Slightly warm, but nowhere near boozy. Just excellent. I second John, what a excellent addition, thanks Wasatch Brewing.

Photo of champ103
3.18/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a dark red, nearly brown color. A beige head rises to more than two fingers. Plenty of sticky lace is left behind.
S: Citrus hops up front. Followed by some dark fruits and wood aromas that mingle together.
T: A quick flash of some citrus like hops. Then an overpowering wood flavor. Some sweetness, but not much. Then finishes very bitter.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Surprisingly syrupy though. Which is an odd mesh. A bit of alcohol, but overall not something I am coming back to often.

Decent enough. The six pack will not go to waist, but not one of the better winter seasonals I have had.

Photo of bort11
4.01/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Courtesy of Wasatch, just like the last three reviews! Dude is beyond generous

12 oz bottle poured into a Corsendonk tulip. Thick tan head with big chunks. The lacing is unbelievable! Thick webs cling to the glass all the way through. Amazing retention. Does not stop. Color is a dark mahogany with very active carbonation streamers.

Smell has an oak and pine wood aroma. Slightly bitter but held in balance with sweet floral hops and brown sugar. Taste has a more caramel malt sweetness. Hops is there, but a bit muted.

Mouthfeel is a little thin for my taste, but it does have a velvety texture. 7% is hidden very well. It snuck up on me. Very nice.

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Wasatch Winterfest from Utah Brewers Cooperative
87 out of 100 based on 113 ratings.