1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

2,874 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,874
Reviews: 1,310
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 13.49%
Wants: 44
Gots: 90 | 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)
View: Beers (127) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,874 | Reviews: 1,310 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of OStrungT


4.72/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours a brownish red with a thick fluffy tan head that fades very slowly leaving lots of thick laces. It has a malty aroma. I also detect slight aromas of ginger and cinnimon. A slight hop presence is detectable. This beer has a spicy taste, but not overly spicy. It is mildly spicy. It tastes really good. I taste cinnimon, and ginger. Maybe cloves also. This beer has a slightly malty sweet taste. I do not taste any hop presence. This beer goes down very smooth leaving a spicy ginger like aftertaste. I think this beer would make an excelent session beer. It has a mild, very good taste. It is not strong in alcohol, so you can drink a lot. I think this is a very good beer. It is a shame that it is only available in a variety pack. I dont particularly want to have to buy Sam Adams Boston Lager and Winter Lager, and certainly not Cranbuerry Lambic just to get two of these.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2005 03:38:18 | More by OStrungT
Photo of santoslhalper


3.25/5  rDev -14%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearence: Looks identical to the Winter Lager I just had.

Smell: The smell is a strong cinammon/spice mix with toasted malt, caramel, and spicy hop notes.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Spicy and hoppy at first, it finishes rather sweet, with a strong molasses and caramel flavor. The cinnamon and ginger are present throughout, acting as balancer. The mouthfeel really lacks, being mostly watered-down and thin.

Drinkability and Overall: Not terrible. Not great. It's worth a try, put do not go out of your way to try it. Meh...

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2005 07:56:58 | More by santoslhalper
Photo of danielharper


3.33/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Purchased as part of the holiday sampler from Target on University, Huntsville, AL.

The appearance is very nice on this beer, with a dark reddish-brown almost black body which let only a bit of light through topped with a thick creamy off-white head.

Very nice aroma. Malty and flavored with nice "Christmasy" spices, the beer reminded me more of a dessert than a drink. Some citrus aroma, a touch of cinnamon perhaps? Pleasant and inviting.

Taste is less good. Up front with the same spiciness I got from the aroma, but with a dry astringent finish and a bit of a rough aftertaste. Not exactly bad, but it doesn't make me yearn for more.

Mouthfeel is moderate, with mild carbonation. Enjoyable without being overwhelming.

For me taste is king in drinkability, and here I find myself not really wanting another, unfortunately. It's a decent drinker, and I think it'll go well when it starts to get colder, but not a favorite of mine.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2005 00:08:43 | More by danielharper
Photo of Stimack

New York

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

Brew pours to a reddish color with a large light tan head that breaks down quickly leaving nice lace rings around the glass. The aroma is dominated by malt scents, chocolate and caramel, along with an alcohol like smell. Can pick up some spices but seem to be over shadowed but the malt, even with this it is a fine smelling brew. It is in the taste where I am able to pick up the spices, at lease cinnamon, which goes well with the malt flavors. The malt flavors seem to lend themselves to being more caramel, than the chocolate that was also picked up with the nose. Over all this is a fine brew and a favorite for a number of years at the holiday’s. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2005 02:53:26 | More by Stimack
Photo of Celt44

New York

3.28/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle reviewed came from a Sam Adams Holiday 12 pack - great packaging!
Appearance is a very dark copper with a medium head - lacing lasts throughout.
Aroma is spicy - strong cinnamon. Alcohol is present
Tastes of citrus/orange but cinnamon is definitely upfront.
Mouthfeel is smooth without too much carbonation. Spicy cinnamon adds a kick.
Overall a pretty decent holiday offering from Sam Adams - It definitely warms the belly! I prefer the Winter Lager and Holiday Porter as seasonals.
Is it just me, or does the chick on the label look exactly like Madonna??

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2005 23:44:59 | More by Celt44
Photo of cubedbee


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

This is my first beer from my first winter sampler pack. Pours a dark reddish brown with a huge fluffy beige hea, good retention, nice lacing. Nose is fairly subdued, a slight cinammony malt, faint citrus, mild ginger, brown sugar. Taste is a nice slightly roasted malt, a little sweet, but blended nicely with cinammon and ginger spiciness. No real hops here, this definitely leans towards the sweetness. Mouthfeel is on the thin side of medium, and carbonation is fairly low, making for an almost slick feel. Overall I was a little disappointed with this, not bad, but not really that great.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2005 18:27:23 | More by cubedbee
Photo of grindcore666


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

Poured dark amber with a creamy off white head. Lacing is above average.

Aroma is cinnnamon and orange citrus. Smells tame and sweet like a relaxing winter brew should.

Tastes sweet but very well-controlled. Chewy ginger, orange, holiday spices. The advertised flavors are no lie. The ginger really comes out. Medium carbonation. Mouthfeel is light bodied but holds a lot of great character.

Excellent Winter. Buy this one with Alaskan's and you don't need much else this season.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2005 01:23:40 | More by grindcore666
Photo of ClearDog


3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance -- Filtered appearance with crimson color. Nice tall, creamy, dirty-white head. Very thin lacing. Almost like water.

Smell -- Pleasant enough. Buttery scent with cinnamon, spices, and a little bit of orange.

Taste -- Spicy . . . and just a little malty sweet. It's okay but it doesn't knock my socks off.

Mouthfeel -- Medium and creamy. Has almost a buttery feel to it. Very soothing.

Drinkability -- I'd be fine with just this one. Glad I tried it, but I wasn't overly impressed. I really liked the smell and found it to be the most interesting aspect about this beer. I'd drink this again if offered, but wouldn't seek it out specifically.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2005 01:56:28 | More by ClearDog
Photo of Xadoor


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

Poured a deep, dark amber colour with a minimal head that dissipated quickly. Aroma is slightly fruity and spicy. Sweet malt flavour to start with some citrus and spicy characteristics. Finishes slightly dry and bitter. Mouthfeel is a bit thin and the alcohol level could have been a touch higher so that it actually gives you a bit of a Winter Warmer affect when you drink it. Overall still quite drinkable, but not exactly what I was expecting.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2005 01:25:24 | More by Xadoor
Photo of Manosbeeroffate


4.22/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark orange/red pour, a bit of a head retained for a while, strong malt upfront with spices coming in afterwards. I was afraid that the spices in this beer would be too overwhelming, but they balance out perfectly. A very nice tasting holiday beer. Enjoy!!

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2005 21:58:37 | More by Manosbeeroffate
Photo of aquatonex

New York

3.95/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours medium red with a grayish foamy head, some retention. Unlike many winter warmers, this one actually has a spicy smell, along with chocolates and sweet malts. Taste follows well with a good balance of semisweetness, chocolate notes, and maltiness. Slight bitterness sticks around. Cinnamon is present as well. Finally, a drinkable winter warmer that actually has spice.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2005 02:27:56 | More by aquatonex
Photo of Naes

New York

3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This one pours out a dark brown with reddish hues and has a decent off white head.. The aroma is roasty and malty. Bits of chocolate surface in the nose. As for flavor, the chocolate and caramel malts are nicely balanced by the beers hop presence. There is also a bit of spice in there as well. Its medium bodied and nicely carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2005 05:40:40 | More by Naes
Photo of ghostwalker


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

Pours a deep, dark reddish brown. Nice 1-2 finger tan head.

Nose is malt and yeast with fruit and spice highlights.

Rich dark flavor. Malt up front, plenty of spice and fruit as the flavor spreads around the palate. Sweet finish with spices sticking around for the ride, cinnamon and nutmeg are noticeable. With all of the spices present, I'm not really getting any hops. Caramel flavors are also present in the dark malt body.

Mouthfeel is thin but zesty. The spices are definitely present with a very zippy tingle. That could be the ginger that others have mentioned.

Drinkability is pretty good overall. Like most winter warmers, I really wouldn't want to have more than 1-2, but they are great to sip sitting next to the fire.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2005 03:32:32 | More by ghostwalker
Photo of PBRstreetgang


4.6/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby garnet hue, dark but clear. Two finger head forms an off-white cream and shows excellent retention but not much lace. Wonderful chocolate and caramel malt nose, with some ginger and orange notes just coming through. Malts taste sweet and toasted, molasses and caramel flavors, with some background cinnamon and orange peel. Mild hops are present just to balance the sweetness and prevent any residual aftertaste. Medium-full body and slow carbonation. Some spice and earthy tones will linger, but mostly clean finish. This is a great seasonal with an intoxicating aroma and rich flavors that can produce some slight alcohol warmth, but it's smooth enough to polish off a few.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2005 06:13:41 | More by PBRstreetgang
Photo of beersarang


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

Pours a peachy orange with a whitish head.

Spicy aroma, with malts.

Malt dominated from the beginning. Sweet grain and caramel followed by a flash of bitterness. In place of a hop character lingering spices like coriander and orange hold in the back of the tongue and are perceived at the exhale. Complex. Finishes sweet.

Medium bodied, normal carbonation.

Interesting but not special nor impressive. The spices need to be more fine tuned and the malts need a more assertive character. Overall seems a bit thin in the flavor department.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2005 06:30:18 | More by beersarang
Photo of sacfly


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

Part of the holiday mixed 12 pack
Pours a clear brown with orange tint. Not much head, thin layer of off with to tan bubbles. Smell is nice and light with the orange peal and ginger taking the center.

First taste brings out the cinnamon at first, even nutmeg although it is not listed as an ingredient. The flavor turns to a spicy aftertaste. No hop character of note. Medium to heavy body, nice mouth feel. A bit of lingering spiciness, but not in an overbearing way.

Makes me think of a pumpkin ale light (on the spices), which is fine by me. Easy drinking. One of the best in the pack.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2005 19:56:06 | More by sacfly
Photo of walleye


3.5/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from the bottle. poured brown with a tan head that left some lacing. aroma, malts, brown sugar, toffee, honey, a nice sweetness, cinnamon, hints of ginger and orange. flavor bitter, malts, sugar, chocolate not to bad of a beer. nice mouth feel.would buy this again.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2005 01:36:12 | More by walleye
Photo of arguemaniac


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

Appearance: Pours a nice dark (very dark) copper/ruby color with a minimal head and light tan lace. Slightly oily. At the very least, this beer looks very enticing.

Aroma: Fruit and spice come through the most. Overall the aroma is that of moderately sweet maltiness. Not too much hop aroma though. Has some wine-like characters even

Taste and Motuhfeel: While the ginger and cinnamon are the first flavors to be noticable, the orange flavor eventually becomes the most notable, dominating in the finish as well (which is pleasantly long). There is also some nice roastiness to this beer, like toasted grain, etc. Medium thick mouthfeel with decent carbonation, quite drinkable. Very, very mild hop bitterness does balance somewhat.

A very unique and enjoyable brew, genuinely flavorful without being too rich or sugary. While not overwhelming, the orange flavor is as strong as fruit beer. In any event, this beer very drinkable and would probably go well with a holiday dinner (Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc), especially with desert.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2005 05:54:12 | More by arguemaniac
Photo of BeerNinja007

New Hampshire

3.5/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of two bottles from a 12-pack seasonal sampler.

Pours a red/orange color of medium darkness with a 1 finger head of small bubbles. Nose consists initially of weak notes of orange, licorice, spice, and medicinal alcohol that come alive with swirling of the glass/ oxygenation. Taste is light up front with spice and hops maturing to a dark heavy aftertaste. Now that the beer has woken up the orange head has dissipated but springs back to life with swirling and leaves lacing on the glass. Caramel and malt scents become apparent, and smoky malt and hops linger in the aftertaste. Becomes quite spicy. Very interesting to note the differences between the first sip and the last, this beer really comes to life. Mouthfeel is smooth and semi-creamy, carbonation is abundant yet soft feeling. Very filling.

Overall this is a good brew, but not something that'll knock your socks off. An interesting beer, though not one I'd go out of my way to find again.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2005 07:37:33 | More by BeerNinja007
Photo of ypsifly


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

Dark copper with a light tan head that falls rather quickly with good lacing.

Smells of ginger and oranges. Not much else is detectable as this suffers from the same problem as many SA products: weak aromas.

Starts off tasting smoothly of malts, then fades into a tingly spiceness, followed by a nice dry finish. The mouthfeel is a bit more than medium.

This one is a bit more complex than the Winter Lager. Well rounded and very drinkable. I just wish they could make their brews more aromatic.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2005 05:49:24 | More by ypsifly
Photo of kmpitz2


3.15/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a deep amber color with a finger of tan head. The nose is interesting. Definately some spices going on in there, wiht what I think is some orange peel over slight coffee and caramel malt notes. The flavor is not all that good. I don't like the spiced winter warmers. The spices have almost an anise like quality to it. Its just not woking for me. The feel is on the light side of moderate. Overall, the spicenes really takes away from this beer. I think the malty base is nice, but it just is not my cup of tea.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2005 02:47:15 | More by kmpitz2
Photo of ybnorml

Rhode Island

3.5/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clean brown beer with amber highlights. Has a small tight beige head. The aroma has nutmeg and cinnamon in it with a touch of dried fruit in the background. There is a malty sweetness at the start of the taste. With the spices coming in towards the end and a bit of roasted malt bitterness on the finish.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2005 23:37:23 | More by ybnorml
Photo of clvand0


3.35/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This one pours an amber/brown color with a small head that dies off quickly and doesn't leave lacing on the glass. The aroma is spicy with hints of cinnamon and maybe a slight citrus. The flavor is not what I expected. It has a spicy character of cinnamon, nutmeg and a hint of citrus. Very low carbonation and a slick mouthfeel. Body was lighter than I'd have liked. Something about the mixture of the spices in this one just didn't appease to my taste buds.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2005 18:42:04 | More by clvand0
Photo of twi1609372


3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I don't know why i found this beer wanting. It just didnt taste right to me. I like almost all other sam beers and i dont like to write a less than raving review on any of them, but i am guided by my concinse and taste. it was not a putred flavor, it was just a bit "off" from what i think it should have been. While not a bad beer by and definition, i would drink another sam over it.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2005 09:04:06 | More by twi1609372
Photo of babydoc


3.45/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This 12 ounce bottle was notched buy before Mar, and was sampled from a pint glass this January. The label describes the cinnamon, ginger, and orange used in brewing. Poured clear dark maple-syrup, with a diminuative ecru head that faded sooner than I'd hoped, leaving only bits of lacing. Nose was spices, gingerbread, almost a pumkin-pie scent there somewhere among the dark malt. It hits the mouth with a smooth moderate mouthfeel, velvety carbonation. Tastes initially of sweet malt and spices, overtaken quickly by some more astringent hops and spices while the malts persist there underneath. I like winter warmers, but am still trying to fit this one in somewhere...I enjoyed tasting, but it's not one I'd drink all night.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2005 04:30:36 | More by babydoc
Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 2,874 ratings.