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Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig AleSamuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale

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

2,903 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,903
Reviews: 1,311
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 13.76%
Wants: 44
Gots: 102 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-28-2001)
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Ratings: 2,903 | Reviews: 1,311 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ThaBobfather


3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

*Notes from Holiday Sampler Session 1/23/09*

Pours a nice brown/ruby color with a lacing of off-white head.
Smell has an interesting butterscotch note, with some caramel behind it.
A dominant sweet malt flavor with a caramel taste that blends out a hop note at the end.
Finish is crisp with a great sweet topping after-taste.
Drinks very well, the caramel definitely makes it a drinkable warmer.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2009 20:18:08 | More by ThaBobfather
Photo of generallee

New York

4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. A best before date was printed on the label.

Appearance: The body has a deep amber color with a slight reddish hew. There is some visible carbonation that makes its way up to the head which has a light tan color and decent retention. Lacing is slick and quickly slides down the glass.

Smell: The aroma has soft sweet orange peel notes with some cinnamon and roasted malt.

Taste/Mouth Feel: The flavor has a bready malt presence up front that slowly adds in notes of cinnamon, ginger, sweet orange peel and finally some mild hops. It has a good medium to full body and the mouth feel is soft, well rounded with soft carbonation.

Notes: Overall a very solid holiday beer from Sam Adams and one of my favorites in there holiday mixed pack.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2009 17:25:08 | More by generallee
Photo of mralphabet


3.58/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: Deep ruby red, nice clarity... about 1/2 a finger worth of head with very nice lacing all the way to the end.

S: I'm getting the cinnamon right up front, some ginger, and some sweet caramel.... Smells pretty good.

T: Malt is front and center then the various spices following... splashing over the tongue.... cinnamon with some orange peel and some brown sugar.

M: Med bodied but pretty carbonated, I think the carbonation makes it feel a little thin.... Not what I expected from a Winter Warmer... I'm used to a Winter Warmer being a little fuller with more ABV.

D: With the various flavors and pretty low ABV you could drink a few of these....

To me it is not a great Winter Warmer but it is a Christmas beer... Not a bad little brew from Sam.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2009 03:20:59 | More by mralphabet
Photo of montageman


2.53/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured into a pint glass.

Finishing off my Sam Adams holiday pack. Not a huge fan of spiced beers, so didn't expect much from this one. Looks nice. Has a dark, almost gingerbread like color. Smell & flavor are similar to Christmas cookies & spices, which while nice, doesn't strike my fancy. This beer is heavily carbonated making it almost feel like soda going down. I can drink this, but having a hard time with it. Not something I'd ever seek out - not recommended.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2009 00:55:05 | More by montageman
Photo of saztheorybook


3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this on post-season clearance and poured it mid-April at the beginning of shorts weather. Whoops.

A- Poured a pretty beautiful reddish-brown, just like it says on the bottle. The head was a nice rich foam which died down pretty quick leaving minimal lacing. It was a bit see-through for a darker beer, but that said, it was pretty gorgeous.

S- Sweet and syrupy, but not in a sickly or gimmicky way. It does, however, smell so much like malt extract that you wonder at first if the wort really did ferment.

T- Right up front is that same syrupy flavor, though again, in a better way than other sweet beers. It makes me nostalgic for the Wassail even though I don't really know anything about it. I suspect that's the intention since it is both Dickensian and Christmas theme.
The finish is a nice smooth bitterness, featuring mostly roasted and chocolate malts.

M- Like silk, if silk were translucent reddish-brown.

D- I remember one night I had four Leinenkugel's Nut Brown (yes, I know it's a different style) that I bought when I was hard on cash. I'm doing my best to recode that memory with this there instead. Probably less of a headache the next day, too.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2009 02:56:10 | More by saztheorybook
Photo of jculler82


3.53/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle to pint glass.

Pours a nice brown with red edges. When held up to some light, the beer is pure red. Really nice looking beer. Three finger, not quite tan head that settles to a creamy 1/4' cap. Good lacing that stays through out.

Smell is licorice, sweet malts, dark fruits, and a faint hint of a metallic scent. Basically the taste is a carbon copy of the scent. The metallic flavor really came through. It wasn't unpleasant, but it didn't make me want to reach for another. No hop flavors to speak of, but I didn't expect any. This beer also had that signature Sam Adams flavor that all their beers seem to have.

Mouthfeel is between thin and medium.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2009 17:49:27 | More by jculler82
Photo of PirateUlf73


4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Clear, crimson-brown color with an off-white head.

S: Sweet, dark, malty caramel and toffee scents mingled with a hint of ginger and spice. A quite robust nose with a lot going on.

T: Like drinking a Christmas cookie. Nice and malty with a myriad of flavorful spices: cinnamon, ginger, clove, even a little allspice. Smooth and almost chocolaty at times. Quite delicious.

M: Medium-bodied and adequately carbonated. The feel is smooth and the aftertaste is sweet and spicy.

D: One of the more drinkable winter warmers, let alone sweet and spicy beers out there.

This is by far the best seasonal that Sam Adams makes. It's big and malty, sweet and flavorful. I would almost go as far as saying that it should be mandatory cold-weather drinking. An excellent beer from start to finish.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2009 08:06:11 | More by PirateUlf73
Photo of smibroncos

New York

4.18/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured this beer into a standard pint glass from the bottle. It poured a clear reddish brown color with about a one and a half finger reddish head. The lacing was fair.

The smell was like christmas in a bottle. Clove, nutmeg, vanilla, cinnamon. Strange but I couldn't stop thinking about family, and friends.

The taste hits you right away bitter, sweet, spicy. There is alot going on here.

To me the mouthfeel was the weakest part of this beer, but it was still average.

This ale reminds me of the holidays. One smell of the spices and aroma makes me think of winter, football, and the family gathered around for a big dinner. Lots of flavor and great character one of my favorite holiday spiced ales.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2009 15:44:51 | More by smibroncos
Photo of Riccymon


3.75/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the winter pack, best by March notched in the label.
Pours from the bottle a dark brown with ruby highlights and about a quarter inch of head. The nose is a little spicy with some muted maltiness, but not much to write home about. Sipping, I taste chocolate malt, a sort of lactic flavor, and quite a bit of spicy ginger. The beer is medium-bodied and leaves the mouth tingling a bit. On the whole, a nice holiday beer, though I feel the first one from the pack, which I drank a few months ago, was quite a bit better.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2009 03:57:34 | More by Riccymon
Photo of PeprSprYoFace


3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thekevlarkid below me said it best that it has a garnet color to it. A thin offwhite head formed but dissapeared fast. A little bit of lacing.

The smell is not super plesent. Not off putting but it first say to me "this beer smells good". Smells of spices I can't put my hand on and a caramel malt taste.

Tastes almost how it smells but better I think. There is a spice that I can't identify. The caremel malt is plesent and satisfying during the winter months.

Mouthfeel is fine for the brew. No complaints.

I can see why this is called a winter warmer because it seems like something I would want to drink during a cold night by a fire. Tasty but I don't think I would want to buy the whole case I had to buy of winter beers to get it.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2009 07:36:23 | More by PeprSprYoFace
Photo of thekevlarkid


4.05/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Out of a mixed winter pack this beer was a dark garnet color. The two fingers of beige head displayed decent retention and laced at first in curtains, then remained above average throughout the rest of the sample. The aroma was excellent, I distinctly detected gingerbread, lots of spices (notably allspice and nutmeg), orange and sweet malts. The flavors were also on-point for the Winter Warmer style and quite enjoyable. I tasted orange peel first, lots of gingerbread again, caramel malt, chocolate malt, cinnamon and nutmeg. As it warmed I began to taste the alcohol and the finish was nice and clean. The mouthfeel was good, the body medium and the carbonation just a little high for my preference. Overall I though this was a really good example of the style and one of the best beers this prolific company makes.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2009 23:31:56 | More by thekevlarkid
Photo of goblue3509


3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is citrusy. The orange peel and other citrus aroma's really come through. The taste is also very citrusy. The orange and cinnomon flavors come through. It taste pretty complex. The appearance is an off color like orangish color. The taste is light and refreshing. Very drinkable. You could enjoy multiple drinkings at one time.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2009 21:36:56 | More by goblue3509
Photo of jujubeast6000


3.23/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed 12/4/2007 (bottle):

Pours a dark brown/reddish colored body, with some head, tan in color, but small. Has a very sweet malty aroma. Slight alcoholy taste. Some spices taste, malts, mellow sweet taste. Watery, almost porterish. Tasty avererage beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2009 23:38:45 | More by jujubeast6000
Photo of wspscott


4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle in pint glass

A: Thin off-white head leaves lots of lace. Crystal clear, dark red color.
S: Sweet bread and spices are obvious as it is poured, smells like cinnamon toast.
T: Definite spices (maybe cinnamon and nutmeg) and bready malts. No hint of hops (no surprise) or dark grains. I would be interested in seeing the grain bill for this.
M: Crisp, with a bit of carbonation, seems to linger on the tongue.
D: A very interesting beer as it warms up. It is not as "heavy" as some winter warmers which makes it easy to drink. I don't think I would have more than one in a sitting, but this is a great way to end the night. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2009 01:31:45 | More by wspscott
Photo of Vengeance526


4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a reddish copper color with a 1 finger tan head that subsides to a light ring and leaves some nice lacing.

Smells of nutmeg and orange with a light hop presence. The mix of spices is quite inviting.

Spices come through pretty well in the taste. Cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger all evident with some orange notes in the background. Really good stuff right here.

Medium bodied and medium carbonation with a somewhat creamy mouthfeel. I would drink this all night but they only gave me 2 in the winter pack. Its too bad you can't buy a sixer of these because it really is one of the best offerings on the SA label.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2009 02:49:01 | More by Vengeance526
Photo of jkbusman

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - dark ruddy amber with a fizzy two-finger head that leaves some lacing on the glass

S - roasted malt with notes of clove, cinnamon and brown sugar

T - a wonderful roasted malty sweetness with hints of cinnamon and brown sugar and dark fruit

M - smooth and full bodied with a little sweetness on the finish

D - very drinkable; a session beer for a night at home by the fire; an absolutely wonderful winter ale and another top notch offering from boston beer

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2009 07:49:59 | More by jkbusman
Photo of remllof

North Carolina

3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle. Poured a about a one inch foamy off white head. Color is a dark red burnt color with mild carbination. The smell has a nice malty spicy attractivness to it with no hint of hops. Taste has a alright malt base nothing really stood out to it, nice bit of spicyness with a taste a bit of cinnimon to it but thats about it. Finishes with a clean aftertaste. Mouth feel is nice not real light but smooth. Overall a decent beer from Sam Adams, too bad can only get this in the holidays.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2009 19:57:12 | More by remllof
Photo of LyonsHead


4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12 oz. bottle

Rich color, in my opinion it just looks spicy, which it is soon confirmed on your first sip

First thing you notice is the smooth texture of this brew. Incredible mouth feel and full body. Starts with caramel notes and moves to cinnamon and ginger. This is quite a spicy beer. Not too bitter though, you can really taste the "holiday" spices used.

Beer finishes with a spice and an almost floral taste, leaves you wanting another sip
I would recommend this beer during the colder months. It leaves you a bit warmer than when you started.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2009 14:45:18 | More by LyonsHead
Photo of PintOHops


3.63/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance/Smell - Appears a dark brown to almost black color with a brownish cherry glow as you look through it. Thin bubble like head that reduces quickly to a spotty ring. Has medium carbonation & leaves spotty lacing. Pretty clear despite the dark color. Smells of sweet malts with chocolate notes, and a hint of tart grapes with warm peppery spices. There's a hint of earthiness in there as well, pretty well balanced.

Taste/Mouthfeel - Tastes of wonderful warm spices along with a sweet creamy vanilla like finish. Sweet caramel notes along with citrus flavors. Hop bitterness lingers on the palate as well. Very well balanced. Mouthfeel is just a little smooth but otherwise on the bitey side. Thin, and lite-medium bodied, there's some lively carbonation on the palate as well.

Drinkability/Final thoughts - Because of its liter body, its pretty easy to drink. I could enjoy 2-3 of these baby's on a chilly night. I really liked the creamy vanilla like finish on this beer, and the the great balance in flavors. Definitely worth a try. Grab your winter holiday pack while you can.

UPDATE NOV2010 - All flavors/aroma's are subdued but still has a very nice creamy feel and a vanilla finish. Not bad and worth a still worth a try.
Cheers and Hoppy Holidays!

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2009 00:58:34 | More by PintOHops
Photo of hoplover82


4.4/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear deep ruby red with a creamy tan head that leaves great lacing.

The aroma is of toffee, spicy with holiday spices. It has sweet malty aroma with cinnamin in the back.

Wow! The flavor is impressive. Very rich with malty toffee and caramel and spices.

Full bodied and smooth this is. Very creamy for the style.

I could have these all night.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2009 02:44:30 | More by hoplover82
Photo of BoitSansSoif


4.05/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Poured a clear, copper-ruby color w/whitish-beige 1-finger head of gentle pour. Decent retention, and thin cap remains as well as some lacing.
S-Sweet malt, candied fruit, strong raisin presence, orange peel, cinnamon, apple. The aroma is warming.
T-Sweet malt, raisins and hazelnuts, orange peel and apple emerge at the back of the tongue, and the finish is of toasty malt, ginger, cinnamon, and very light hops. A light spicy, malty and earthy finish lingers.
M-Balance is excellent, nice prickly carbonation, and body is silky. The finish is warming and satisfying.
D-Great drinkability, but short of session brew. It gets a little stodgy near the bottom of the bottle.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2009 07:00:54 | More by BoitSansSoif
Photo of davexisxrabid


4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a chestnut brown tinged with red at the corner and a half an inch head that fizzled down quickly. Good lacing left on the glass.

Aroma of caramel, floral hops, citrus, orange peel and cinnamon reminiscent of a clove cigarette (Djarum).

Smooth toasted malt flavor, slightly bittersweet in the aftertaste with a small hop prescence. Good combination of spices to give it a nice spicy kick but not overwhelming at all.

Medium bodied although the aftertaste doesn't remain for very long on the palate.

Very drinkable. A good offering from Sam Adam's. Not an exceptional winer warmer (I like the New Belgium 2 Degree Below a little better) but something I look forward to having again pretty soon.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2009 17:58:45 | More by davexisxrabid
Photo of Patrick999


3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Perhaps a bit more head on the pour than I expected - pint glass overflowing on a too-hard pour. Clear brownish-red. Lots of lacing and retention....pretty nice looking pour.

S - A little like a milk chocolate bar with a hint of nuttiness. Almost smells like a nut brown.

T - I think this just became my favorite winter warmer. Finally, one that doesn't kill me with nutmeg. Typical "Christmas" spices are played down here, allowing the nutty malt bill and sweet earthy British hops to pull through. A little alcohol noted in the finish, along with a hint of star anise.

F - Good creaminess and ample but not overbearing carbonation.

D - The Boston Beer Co. has done a great job with this one. A very tasty and somewhat complex under-6% beer, something we need more of.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2009 03:02:31 | More by Patrick999
Photo of MerkinMan


4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Review #100 -- Woo!

A: A lovely red, and I mean deep ruby red, not the usual red / brown. Wonderful color and clarity. Head settles down to a nice 1/2 inch or so.

S: The cinnamon, ginger, and orange mentioned on the label are all seeminly separate to the nose. A very sweet caramel smell as well.

T: Crystal malt character is immediately noticeable, followed by the spices, and then finishes with the orange peel. Nice layering, sweet flavors become more like brown sugar as it warms.

MF: Medium bodied and not over carbonated. Texture is a tiny bit thin for what I expect in a Winter Warmer / Christmas beer.

D: I miss the days when this was available in big bottles; now it is why I get the winter collection mix pack. It beats the Dickens out of most others in this style. (I hope I am not the 100th to make that obvious joke).

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2009 18:45:53 | More by MerkinMan
Photo of Duhast500

Rhode Island

4.22/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass

The color is a clear dark brown to maroon, with a brownish white foamy head and little lacing.

The smell is a bit cinnamon, slight malty flavor with a bit of brown sugar flavor.

The taste is of roasted malts, caramel, and a slight citrus feel. Also has a bit of a pepper flavor as well. Some noble hops are in the background and is keeping things from getting too sweet.

Nice heaviness to this beer but not too heavy. There is a nice smoothness that has an interesting mouth-feel help it go down well.

This beer is a nice seasonal beer. It only comes out in the Sam Adams holiday pack. Well worth buying the whole pack to have a try of this beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2009 15:06:38 | More by Duhast500
Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 2,903 ratings.