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St. Peter's Winter Ale - St. Peter's Brewery Co Ltd

Not Rated.
St. Peter's Winter AleSt. Peter's Winter Ale

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

227 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 227
Reviews: 175
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 18
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
St. Peter's Brewery Co Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-09-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 227 | Reviews: 175 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Traquairlover


4.05/5  rDev +4.1%

1 pint, 0.9 fl oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A = Deep ruby (almost garnet) red, small tan head, light lacing.

S = Sweet fresh uncooked bread dough, light scents of spices as if some winter treat were cooking in the other room, very light but warming smells.

T = Sweet flavors of soft doughy not quite fully cooked biscuits sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar but also with a slight perfectly balancing bitters that shows up at mid-palate and lasts well into the long finish.

M = Smooth foamy feel of medium body with very good mouthcoating.

D = An easy drinking Winter warmer that I look forward to in the cold months.

01-23-2009 23:14:48 | More by Traquairlover
Photo of smcolw


4.05/5  rDev +4.1%

Pours like a dark brown ale, where the faintest of light will shine through. Solid head with great retention. Spider web lace on the glass.

Warm molasses-like malt aroma. A strong whiff of alcohol as well. No discernible hop, though.

This taste has elements of three different beers to me. It starts off as a un-hoppy brown ale. Soon, the alcohol makes its presence known and the beer becomes closer to an Old Ale (not quite enough to make it a barley wine). The swallow features a strong black patent malt bite that is reminiscent of a Stout. This finish provides good balance. The body is also quite rich with a minimal amount of carbonation (makes the head even more impressive).

If memory serves me correctly, I imagine I'm rating this the best of the St. Peter's offerings. It is a deceptive beer. I would also describe it as being "very English" in style and flavor. Think Samuel Smith.

06-07-2008 19:59:35 | More by smcolw
Photo of srandycarter


4.05/5  rDev +4.1%

A - Near black. Gigantic, thick creamy head that stays for some time. Lots of cling lace that would need a chisel to remove.

S - Earthy malt. Cocoa. Some bitter hops note in there.

T - Taste matches smell pretty well. Very earthly, with a base like cocoa feel. Sweetness is slapped down with just enough malt. Nice clean finish.

M - Creamy, good balance, good carb. Nice.

D - I could have a few of these. Reminds me of the British family of beers for sure. It's a good one.

02-13-2011 06:59:23 | More by srandycarter
Photo of hegelec

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +4.1%

Served from a 500 mL bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Lovely dark, nearly opaque brew with ruby highlights. A single finger of tan head, decent retention. Very good lacing.

Aroma is primarily of roasted malts -- rich chocolate and coffee. The profile seems similar to a nice porter. A little agitation yields juicy, dark fruit smells -- especially cherry. Very enticing.

Taste follows aroma, very deep, malty and a little smokey. Modestly sweet, but very well balanced with hop bitterness. Very tight! A touch more floral hops flavour is now obvious. The finish is bitter and somewhat dry and metallic. A hint of butterscotch in the aftertaste. This is a tasty beer.

Mouthfeel is luxurious. Fairly low carbonation, so smooth and creamy. Moderate fullness, but not nearly overwhelming. Slight warming sensation from the higher alcohol. I could indulge in a pint or two of this without being too weighed down. A good sign.

12-21-2008 23:30:18 | More by hegelec
Photo of baiser


4.08/5  rDev +4.9%

This is an ale packed with flavour, and alcohol. A great winter ale. Only downside was the appearance. Not much of a head. Soapy appearance much like alot of other st peter offerings, no lacing. Colour was a dark ruby red, almost opaque.

Aroma of roasted malts, raisins, coffee. Taste was superb. A rich, complex beer. Full of burnt coffee, smoke, caramel, licorice and molasses. Alcohol is warming. Mouthfeel is slick, moderately carbonated. Drinkability is alright, the smokiness is a bit much after a while.

11-28-2004 00:45:26 | More by baiser
Photo of stjarnflikka


4.08/5  rDev +4.9%

Pors a dark reed beer that relaly doesnt let through light. There is a thin foam thats rappidly dissolved.

Smell is bread, dried frutis and some figs. There is some sourness to it combined with a surypy sweetness, really fruity and rich.

Taste is mainly coffee and malts that has a nice bitterness to it. There are som roasted tones with traces of carbonation, fruits and spices. Well balanced and buttery smooth.

A nice beer with good taste, has a nice sting to it.

01-11-2005 18:23:37 | More by stjarnflikka
Photo of bmwats


4.08/5  rDev +4.9%

Poured from 500 ml. bottle into standard pint.

A: Very dark brown. Pours a slight, bubbly, brownish head. Dissolves quickly and almost completely, but not much to begin with, anyway. Just a little beer ring lacing remains as you drink.

S: Coffee roasted malt, dark bittersweet chocolate, a little butterscotch, and just a little pungent peatiness.

T: Deep roasted malt with just a touch of sweetness. That pungency is much stronger on the palette than in the nose (but not in a bad way). Strong alcohol, maybe bourbon, note.

M: the pungency introduces itself in the front, and lingers throughout. Despite the rich and robust flavor, it doesn't feel heavy on the palette. Has a certain light, refreshing quality. Kinda' weird.... because it's a bit unexpected.

D: Good sipping brew to savor and enjoy.

Good atmosphere. Bold, intimidating appearance, although nothing too exciting, and not much in terms of a head or lacing. Nose is great though. Great combination of deep, rich roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate hints. Flavor follows suit. Deep, rich, and robust, and a clean palette with a good balance of tones. Overall, this is a really good quaff.

11-21-2010 04:36:59 | More by bmwats
Photo of kristiekatk


4.08/5  rDev +4.9%

I love the fat little bottle this beer comes in. Makes me think that I’m drinking an olde timey home remedy for something. Let’s say gout.

St. Peter’s pours a deep ruby, almost black, with a head that fades into a thin and bubbly ring. The aroma is all malted milk balls and roasted malts, very porter-ish. There’s also a good tinge of leafy hops, molasses and burnt caramel.

Vanilla, fruit, and English hops dominate the front end of this beer, resting on a roasted malt base. A lot of char notes mixed with the hops provide for a great balance between sweet and bitter. The mouthfeel is slick and well-rounded, though it feels a lot lighter than what I would like it to be.

Overall, I’m not exactly sure what is overly winter-y about this beer, but I did enjoy it and think it would taste great paired with a warm winter meal.

12-07-2012 03:26:26 | More by kristiekatk
Photo of Fatehunter


4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

Two and half fingers of light tan head on a just-short-of-black body.
The aroma is roasted malt, black licorice and caramel. Great depth here.
The taste is strong on the black licorice, backed up by the roasted malt. There’s a mild bitterness to balance out the malt sweetness.
This has a heavy body with low carbonation. The texture is oily.
A wonderful ale.

02-01-2013 02:14:41 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of dsa7783

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

My first-ever brew from St. Peter's, and I was really impressed with their Winter Ale - a true-to-the-style depiction of a winter warmer with a chracteristic malty, warming flavor... pours a jet-black ebony hue with a decent head with nice lacing... smell was complete with roasted malts, espresso, and cocoa... flavor boasted hints of burnt, dark chocolate, toffee, figs, prunes, malts, coffee, and dehydrated fruits... caramel, nutty, butter taste was also evident with candied, brown sugar pouring through, thick, rich, and full of flavor make this a superb beer and an awesome representation of the style... one of the better Winter brews I've tasted for sure... good mouthfeel with easy drinkability and a relatively modest 6.3% ABV make this an easily enjoyable brew that fits perfect for the cold season... St. Peter's did really well with this one... excellent sample... Recommended...

01-31-2008 00:35:19 | More by dsa7783
Photo of case4816

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

A- Poured into snifter glass a very dark brownish, red colour. like strong tea. Very bubbly head that thinned to an almost non-existent lacing.

S- Very heavy smell with lots of chocolate on the front. Caramel and some coffee also comes through, as well as a little of the alcohol. Also a light hint of some cinnamon.

T- Fairly strong coffee essence, lots of chocolate flavour with the caramel complimenting that profile. Cinnamon comes through, as well the alcohol comes through quite strong, with some light coffee on the finish that is noticeably bitter.

D- I'm going to get a few more of these for sure. Very enjoyable to drink; a very delicious winter beer.

11-11-2010 05:32:26 | More by case4816
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

The distinctive green flask reveals sooty, coffee bean brown contents that don't seem to be very friendly with the light. Discovering its clarity comes as a slight surprise. This thing is flat as the prairies; I'm beginning to understand that St. Peter's Brewery does head retention about as well as the oil companies do environmentalism.

I know this goes by the 'winter ale' moniker but I'm going to go ahead and call it a porter so as to have more of a stick to beat it with. In truth, that's how I perceive it and besides, it makes a fine porter; it has a definitive coffee-like character, in regards to both its roastiness and its flavour, and it is layered with hints of bittersweet chocolate too.

And in tasting the beer you really hit the motherload of those coffee and chocolate flavours. As appreciated as they are, however, there are plenty others that vie for the taste buds' attention: stale mint, cinnamon cane, dark toffee, chewing tobacco, pine bark and an ample amount of leafy, pungent, typically English hops. Mmm mmm.

And all the aforementioned play a part in the mouthfeel, too. The hops lend a very herbal bitterness. The malts add elements of smoke and heavy roast. The hints of pine and cinnamon procure a wintry spiciness. The lack of carbonation was terribly distracting at first but in the end doesn't seem to detract anything from the beer's enjoyment.

St. Peter's Winter Ale certainly has an oddness against its counterparts, I will say that much, but strangely it works - and I'm happy to have a full pint of it. I can't offer any food pairings but might I suggest an armchair by a fireplace, frosty windows and the company of fragrant evergreen? This is definitely a guest you want in your house for the holidays.

05-17-2010 00:14:35 | More by biegaman
Photo of HATS4BATS

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

Complex and layered. Powerful nose of coffee and chocolate in balance. Flavour leads with smack of toffee with enduring notes of burnt coffee, salted chocolate and malt. At times struggles to conceal ample alcohol content. Feel of a traditional ale with pleasant after-taste that holds complexity in balance.

12-30-2012 01:44:17 | More by HATS4BATS
Photo of bobsy

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

Wonderful dark red pour, which is almost off-black until you hold it up to the light. A finger of creamy light tan head forms and then drops to a collar and fine film, leaving some spots and streaks of lace behind. Chocolaty, herbal aroma with the hint of pitted fruit and coffee grounds. There's definitely something almost stout-like or porteresque to it.

The flavour also has a strong chocolate element, but is more than capably backed up by coffee, honey, and a certain spiciness. Kind of similar to a stout, in that its flavour profile seems to lean towards deeply roasted malts, and the tastes associated with that. There's a nice peppermint tinge to the finish, which makes this refreshing and intriguing. Smooth, almost oily mouthfeel, with little carbonation.

This is a prime example of a winter warmer and one of the most drinkable examples I've come across. The sweetness is in check and the spices don't run wild, in fact its so similar to a stout I probably wouldn't be able to pick it out of a lineup. Highly drinkable and recommended.

01-09-2010 23:49:47 | More by bobsy
Photo of whynot44


4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

Dark cola brown with ruby highlights and a modest tan head that retains fairly well and manages some nice lacing.

The aroma is dark caramel malt, dark fruit, molasses, a hint of nuts and chocolate. The taste is dark bread, plums, toffee, carmel, dark chocolate, coffee and spices. The finish is fairly dry, spicy, with a bit of hops bite and a definite alcohol note.

Medium bodied, smooth, drinkable, but really more of an after dinner sipper. Altogether a very nice cold weather brew. Could be good following winter activities.

11-14-2008 03:11:00 | More by whynot44
Photo of dacrza1

New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

Date Rated: April 5, 2013...
Glassware: Victory Hop Devil nonick...
Occasion: The Hobbit on DVD--this will be a good pairing...
Appearance: cold black body (not quite a necromancer) with gray, dirty-snow-colored head that sinks swiftly into a thin halo...
Aroma: malty and robust--a roasted ale more in line with a porter than a special ale...
Palate: medium-bodied and porterly, almost soda-like in its slickness--more a Gamgee than a Baggins; not a fan of the consistency, admittedly...
Taste: wine-like astringency finishes what becomes a softly warming, fruity/grape flavor--late hints of vanilla suggest complexity...
Overall: an earnest strong ale that gave me a heightened, mellow ripple trough the body as it finished--like besting Gollum in a game of riddles...

06-14-2013 01:57:16 | More by dacrza1
Photo of dgallina


4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

1 pint, 0.9 fluid ounce rounded green bottle. No apparent date. I wish St. Peter's were still using their unique gin-flask style bottles.

Pours a good-looking ruby-edged dark brown with two fingers of creamy tan head and superb lace. The beer smells of medium-toasted malt and sweet caramel with an herbal hop counterpoint. The flavor is very similar; mellow toasted malts and carmel with light hop balance. Body is light-to-medium, crisp and clean. Very drinkable, but doesn't raise itself above the pack.

02-20-2008 03:58:19 | More by dgallina
Photo of RonaldTheriot


4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

St. Peter’s Winter Ale has a thin, off-white head, a very dark brown (essentially black) appearance, some visible bubbles steams on the side of the glass, and not a whole lot of lacing left behind. The aroma is of rich, dark-roasted barley malt, black cherries, sugar, a bit of chocolate, and maybe a trace of added spices. Taste is of all that, with a fruit cake note, some bitterness, and a bit of charcoal. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy and slick, and St. Peters’s Winter Ale finishes semi-dry, refreshing, and moderately drinkable. Overall, this is quite delicious.


11-03-2013 17:48:53 | More by RonaldTheriot
Photo of liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

Bottle from the LCBO, part of the winter release. 500ml into a balloon tulip.

Poured a dark burgundy, bordering on black. A finger of tan head fades to some big bubbles, and retains a collar of head with minimal lace. Nose of dark fruits, milk chocolate, plum, figs, bit of roastiness and some warm winter spices (cinnamon, nutmeg) which aren't prominent, but are interwoven amongst the others. Taste has more of the dark fruits and chocolate battling for supremacy on the palate, with some roastiness in there for good measure. Good smooth mouthfeel, with a quick hint of the alcohol in the finish. Solid drinkability, a winner.

01-21-2011 14:35:05 | More by liamt07
Photo of champ103


4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

A: Pours a dark brown, nearly black color. Some ruby highlights around the edges. A large tan head rises to over two fingers. Plenty of lace is left behind.
S: Toasted malts, baked bread, chocolate. Very nice in the nose.
T: Again, very nice. Toasted malts with a toffee like sweetness. Baked bread and finishes with a nice bitter chocolate bite.
M/D: A medium to full body. Medium carbonation, but overall very soft in the mouth. So easy to drink. A great winter warmer.

This holds up very nicely in the bottle. I wish I could have this on cask. I am sure that would be a great treat. Still, as is, something I would highly recommend and something I am sure to buy more of before the season is over.

11-02-2011 01:50:28 | More by champ103
Photo of OskarL


4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

Appearance - When you hold it to a light you can glimpse some redness in this otherwise black beer. A light brown head that stays for a while an leaves a lot of thick lacing that covers the whole glass.

Smell - Dark roasted malts, coffee, chocolate and toffee with a faint banana smell.

Taste - Pretty much as the smell. Roasted malts, chocolate in the start, then ripe banana and some hop bitterness. Well balanced.

Mouthfeel - Very smooth and creamy with a medium body and medium cabonation.

01-27-2010 15:32:33 | More by OskarL
Photo of mintjellie

Ontario (Canada)

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Dark brown, almost black, with ruby highlights. A fingers worth of somewhat retentive tan head leaves behind a spotty lace. Mild aroma of coffee, cocoa powder, and plums. Tastes of black coffee and bakers chocolate. Plums provide a fruity counterpoint. Moderate roasted malt bitterness lasting long into the aftertaste. Medium bodied with low carbonation; smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Opened it a bit too soon after taking it out of the fridge, so it took a bit of time to open up. Once it opened up it was quite easy to open up to it. It's not a big beer. It's fairly simple too. The flavour has a certain depth to it though, the sort of simplicity that goes a long way.

This beer is similar to their cream stout, but drier. Coffee is a little bit more prominent, and chocolate less so. If you we're to give this to me blind, I'd probably think this stout. Regardless of what it is, this is a tasty beer. I had one for the first time last Christmas, and I have no idea why I didn't pick up more at the time; I'll be sure to pick up more this time around.

12-16-2009 21:28:52 | More by mintjellie
Photo of GimmeAles


4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Served at cellar temp. A cool, high-shouldered St. Peter’s bottle, sadly it seems they’ve done away with the cool, oval-flask style bottle in favor of a similar (but not as unique), round one. A simply, classy salmon shield, ringed in Gold with the distinctive script announces a special seasonal on the label.
Pours a brooding sable into the snifter with only the faintest ruby edges coming through in the light. Lovely. Subdued, mildly active carbonation never managed to cap the beer, even with firm pour. Light ring of beige foam stays to the end though.

Wafts of caramel and toasted grain first greet the nose. Closer inspection reveals a hint of smoke, and subdued, vinuous fruit, skunk, vanilla, and hazelnuts. A soft, subtle, but very complex nose.

Flavours are of toasted husk, caramel and gently smoked wood. Biscuity and nutty with leather and tobacco also present (maybe a good cigar-beer here). Just enough hop bitterness to balance the malts, though no distinct hops character really comes through.

Light and smooth mouthfeel for a ‘strong’ English beer. Finishes fairly dry but with a pleasant lingering caramel sweetness. A fine ale indeed – done in the subtle, classy way that all St. Peter’s brews are. Warming me nicely on this cold, wet January evening.

01-10-2008 05:31:55 | More by GimmeAles
Photo of scottoale


4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

500 ml. olive green embossed bottle with foiled labels and no freshness date. It pours a very dark brown with ruby red highlights when held to the light. A thick and creamy 1/2" tan head adorns the liquid, but settles eventually.

Sweet malty nose comprised of toffee and caramel, some oak, vanilla and tannins in general. A bit earthy as well. The taste is truly the same as the aroma...nice sweet complexity of malt and roastiness, even slightly smokey at times with butterscotch, toffee and caramel flavors from the start, right down to the bitter char of a finish. A great tasting English style winter brew. Classic.

Medium bodied with a smooth creamish feel in the mouth, just the right carbonation for this style, the alcohol is barely detectable and just slightly warming...drinkability for sure!

Very enjoyable brew.

12-30-2008 09:22:36 | More by scottoale
Photo of Patrick999


4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

A - pours a reddish dark with a stout-like head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Mostly caramel and some buttery diacetyl. Smells a bit like candy, like a quality piece of English toffee.

T - Anise and chicory through in the taste along with some lightly roasted malt. Very good, though still has that odd, unpleasantly non-hop bitter aftertaste I get with all winter warmers. It has less of it, though, so this shoots up to my #1.

F - Smooth, almost as if nitro-tapped. The little bubbles don't bite much, contributing to that lush feel.

D - If I had to choose a winter warmer from those I've tasted, I'd probably reach for this - less of that funky bitter spice I don't really like, and more like a well-made English brown.

01-27-2008 04:50:48 | More by Patrick999
St. Peter's Winter Ale from St. Peter's Brewery Co Ltd
87 out of 100 based on 227 ratings.