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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.
BA SCORE
85
very good

2,972 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,972
Reviews: 1,311
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 13.79%
Wants: 46
Gots: 137 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,972 | Reviews: 1,311 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of skynxnex
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notched to drink by March, 2006. Poured into a Delirium Tremens tulip with a small white head with moderate lacing. Color is Brown transparent red.

Smell is sweet; some spice and a hint of ginger. Taste is sweet, toasty, and a bit of alcohol. There are also notes of that spice and citrus rind that balance the sweetness. Mild hops. Perfectly normal mouth feel and although one bottle is very drinkable, it's a bit sweet for more than one. Very nice beer.

skynxnex, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of evanackerman
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

this is a very interesting beer! the nose is oranges and ginger, the taste is very complex, the first thing i noticed was cinnamon followed by dark malt followed by hop bitterness with an orange aftertaste - this beer has an exeptionally long finish that rivals any wine i've ever tasted.

mouthfeel is superb. drinkability scores a bit lower simply because one is probably enough (this is in now way a bad thing).

great beer, i'll look forward to it on the holidays.

evanackerman, Dec 03, 2005
Photo of Zorro
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear chestnut brown beer with a tall light brown head.

Smell is clean and a little sweet with lots of fresh spice scents. Vanilla, chocolate, brown sugar, cinnamon, clove and ginger are the individual spices I can pick out.

Taste is brown sugar with a trace of bitterness, vanilla and ginger in the first taste. Fair flavor of chocolate in this and a good amount of Christmas spices. Mostly the flavor is dominated by chocolate; vanilla, pumpkin pie spices and a woody dry bitter finish. A tasty pleasant winter beer here. There is a bit of a tongue prickle here I can't tell if it is the ginger or the carbonation.

Mouthfeel is quite good, very fine carbonation gives this a creamy mouthfeel.

Very nice drinking beer here. Nice and tasty yet no overload on spice, alcohol or hops. Recommended for everyone.

Zorro, Dec 03, 2005
Photo of Hagbard
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Old Fezziwig, a holiday tradition! As much as I dislike not being able to buy sixers of this, it would almost seem disappointing not to have to purchase the whole Holiday mix pack. Old Fezzi pours a dark reddish amber with almost purple highlights. A large fluffy tan head forms, eventually yielding to lace. The aroma is very nice, a deep malty sweetness evokes many sweet flavors like sugar plums and candy. In the background is nutmeg and/or cinnamon. The taste is very sweet due to a very strong malt base. There are candy flavors and fruit flavors that meld to create a unique candied fruit impression. Sugar plum fairies maybe. There is some brown sugar towards the finish followed by a slight bit of cinnamon and nutmeg. The mouthfeel is silky and soft. The drinkability is good in the sense that I love drinking the stuff, but suffers somewhat in that I probably wouldn't ever want more than 1 (maybe 2) on a given night. Overall, this is one of my favorite Sam Adams' (maybe the favorite) beers and I look forward to it every year.

Hagbard, Dec 01, 2005
Photo of ColoradoBobs
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

After the truly gorgeous dark-red pour, this beer was only just above average in every way.

Smell and mouthfeel were pretty okay, and decently balanced. The ginger flavor is not something I'm crazy about: too pronounced.

It's a nice enough winter warmer, but there's really nothing to make it outstanding. Still, it's worth a try.

ColoradoBobs, Nov 30, 2005
Photo of metallistout
4.43/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought this in the Sam Adams Winter Pack.

Pours a reddish-brown color with a tan medium head

The Aroma of orange, caramel, cinnamon, ginger.

Tastes of caramel, nutty flavor, cinnamon, very malty, very little hop presence. A chocolate flavor noticed. Almost a brown ale or porter, but with a little spice kick to it. Also alcohol is noticed.

I would like to see this in replacement of THe Winter Lager that they make in seasonal rotation. I do like the winter lager, but would prefer to see this one in the taps of bars as the regular winter season brew for Sam.

metallistout, Nov 29, 2005
Photo of jakester
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is from the Winter sampler case. I drank it in a goblet. Expiry date clearly notched on the label.

Pours a crystal clear ruby red with a one finger head of beige foam. The head falls to islands and a ring, with decent lacing. Carbonation looks slow.

Aroma is wonderful cinnamon and orange, with notes of vanilla, and maybe even cotton candy. Gentle spicy hops are way in the back. This smells like it's going to be yummy!

Flavor is sweet cinnamon, caramel malt, a little orange, and spices like vanilla and nutmeg. The flavor is just a tad thin compared to the smell, but enjoyable, nonetheless. Aftertaste is spicy and sweet.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, just slightly thin; refreshing for a holiday beer. Carbonation is soft, finish is shortish and spicy.

The body is just a little thin, IMO, for this to be a great beer. The spices are smartly understated, the hop character rightly low, the smell is wonderful, and the taste is very good. A damn fine example of a holiday beer, and I would drink a sixer of this anytime.

jakester, Nov 28, 2005
Photo of LordChesterfield
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It pours like a translucent porter and the flavor begin like one too, but it's much more smooth. It has a light mouthfeel and it ends clean; not unlike a lager. Very lightly hopped, just enough to keep the malt in check. I don't get the winter warmer name, as It didn't make me warm....just drunk. Though it's not your typical beer as you can drink it cold during cold weather without feeling like an idiot. Anyone ever get this feeling? "It's so freakin' cold out, well time to settle down with a nice COLD BEER?!"

LordChesterfield, Nov 28, 2005
Photo of russpowell
4.08/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bright copper to red in color with a rocky tan head that held up great and left a significant lace trail down the pint glass.

Smell: Malt, cinamon, raisins & alcohol.

Taste: Some hop bitterness on the tounge with malt, orange, brown sugar & cinamon coming through.

Mouthfeel: Thick, balanced and carbonated just right.

This would go great with gingerbread or leiberkuchen (sp?). Will try to find if I can buy just sixer vice the holiday 12 pack. Better than last year's vintage IMHO

russpowell, Nov 28, 2005
Photo of whartontallboy
4.08/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a dark orange-brown with a finger of bubbly white head. Decent lacing left behind by this one.

Smell is spicy, with a lot of nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, and maltiness in there. Some little hints of cloves as well, and a light fruitiness, but I'm not getting the orange peel the bottle promised.

Flavor is nice for a winter warmer. It's malty and sweet, but the spices keep it from being cloying. The aforementioned blend of spices come through pretty clearly, particularly the ginger, which tempers the sweetness nicely. The finish is very spicy, but not in an over-the-top kind of way. Mouthfeel is medium and solidly compliments the flavor.

Overall: A very nice winter warmer; I can see what all the fuss is about. Just spicy enough.

whartontallboy, Nov 28, 2005
Photo of fromage
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not bad, nice and spicy.

Poured into a tumbler. Nice, big, foamy, tan head that left lacing for the glass. Deep mahogany color. A fair amount of bubbling.

Nice caramel, toffee, and molasses smell, with just a bit of orange and ginger. Orange is probably more from hops than the actual orange in it.

Taste is a good deal of malty, toasted caramel with a spicy finish. Not cloying at all. Not all that complex.

Good medium mouthfeel. Quite drinkable. Not strong enough to really stand up to pumpkin pie, though. Probably good with something mild like ginger snaps or other holiday cookies.

fromage, Nov 27, 2005
Photo of MUSHROOMCLOUD
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - 1 1/2" antique white creamy head atop a brown liquid with some amber tint. Good retention and great lace.

Smell - Great spice mingled with orange peels and toffee.

Taste - Sweet malt. Spice. Candied orange and cinnamon nicely placed in the background. Caramel. Slightest hint of maple. Nice hop tang in finish.

Mouthfeel - Creamy and medium bodied with mid level carbonation.

Drinkability - Great. Very enjoyable SA brew. It has been several years since my last Old Fezzi and I won't let that happen again.

MUSHROOMCLOUD, Nov 27, 2005
Photo of SteveO1231
4.18/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Working away on the Sam Adam's Winter Pack over the Thanksgiving weekend.

Pours an almost opaque dark red, nice ruby higlights. Nice bubbly tan head that thins out quickly.

Very nice malt smell, Spicy and fruity (cinnamon and of fruit cocktail.)

Nice on the palate, nice caramel matls. Nice mild fruity sweetness. Light citrus taste. Leaves a tartness on the tongue like cranberry sauce.

Very crisp, fruity and spicy. Nicely balanced but I can probably only tolorate a few at a time.

SteveO1231, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of mattcrill
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoy by March ('06 I'm assuming) notched on the label.

Appearance: A clear amber pour with golden honey edging. A small ivory head develops that retains nicely.

Smell: Honey, maple syrup, carmel malts. Almost smells like their Double Bock. Very dark and fruity. A nice inviting aroma.

Taste: More of the same...dark fruits, honey, a bit of yeastiness at the end. To me, it tastes like they poured their Winter Lager and Double Bock together to get this. That being said, those are two of my faves from SA. No bitterness or off flavors noted.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, a touch creamy with some balancing carbonation.

Drinkability: With the lower ABV and the maltiness of this beer, it's easy drinking. SA makes another winner with this one! A pleasant holiday treat.

mattcrill, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of KroMagnon
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Decent head but it descends rapidly. Beer is a nice amber color. The aroma is slightly malty with spices, most dominant to me is orange and vanilla. The flavor is smooth, clean, with some caramel and honey notes as well as some just plain sweetness. Hops seem present only for a little bitterness at the end. This isn't bad, its interesting, but kind of mild and also not very "ale-like"; it reminds me of a less complex, less strong Belgian ale.

KroMagnon, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of BrewRunner
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice reddish brown color with an off white head. It has a nice head retention.

The aroma is very nice. Pretty sweet with a fruity hint to it. I wouldn't mind smelling it more often.

Taste is very pleasant. The fruit comes through a little, but not enough to distinguish it. The mounthfeel also lacks. It's just missing some thing, it feels a little watery.

But overall I enjoyed it and wouldn't mind buying a 6 pack if I'm presented with the option.

BrewRunner, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of kmcnair
3.63/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another one sampled from the 2005 Sam Adams Winter Sampler.

Pours a deep dark garnet/brunette hue and makes an offwhite head. Leaves a nice bit lacing down my glass. Aroma is a hint of cinnamon and lots of roasted barley. Flavor is lightly spiced with a hint of bitterness and some roasted chocolate malts. Crisply carbonated, light to medium palate, a solid drinker with a clean dry finish. This is a solid offering from Sam Adams, I found it quite enjoyable. A brew that I am glad there are 2 of in the Winter Sampler.

kmcnair, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of mmmbeer
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. with purchase before March notched on the label. Pours reddish with a hint of red and is a deep ruby in the light. The head is about a finger thick, yellow/tan, and leaves lacing on the glass from most of the sips. Smells of cinnamon, ginger, chocolate, and orange, along with floral/green hops. Roasted malts and spices on the palate, along with some bitter chocolate, traces of alcohol, and floral hops that leave a mild to medium bitterness. The mouthfeel starts medium but thickens as it warms, becoming smooth but retaining some of the tingly carbonation. A good winter spice beer.

mmmbeer, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of jmz62565
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours a dark amber with a very large,three finger head,It really is a nice looking beer.The smell has a little bit of spices,but there also is alittle bit of cooked veggies.It's only a little bit,but it's there.The taste has a small amount of the usual holiday spices,but I don't think it's overpowering like some reviewers.There is a sweet maltiness thats nice,but you're not bombarded with cinnamon and nutmeg.The m/f is a nice even medium feel,a good distrobution of flavor.This is an OK beer,nothing great,but not bad.I would just work on the smell.

jmz62565, Nov 21, 2005
Photo of Vancer
4.4/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Geez, I wish I could get this in a 12 pack, instead of just 2 in the winter sample pack. What a great warmer, exceptionally rich and smooth, good for 2 or for 12. Nice pour, dark caramel brown in the light, almost black in the shade. Only drawback, somewhat weak malty aroma.

The cheater label told me about the cinnamon, ginger and orange – which were in the quaff, but subtle! A medium to full bodied brew, full carbonation.

The festive label really lets you know this one is gonna be fun to drink – gotta find more!

Vancer, Nov 21, 2005
Photo of shbobdb
2.25/5  rDev -40.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Let me start by simply stating that I do not like spice-beers. But, I decided that maybe I should try and expand my palate a little, so I was kinda excited about this beer. It pours pretty much like SA's boston lager, and it smells pretty good. As my girlfriend described it, "It smells very Merry Christmas". It even poured with a nice solid head, to help me enjoy the smells.
That was where my enjoyment of this beer ended. Baaag! The cinnamon and other spices just didn't do it for me. Nononononono. I didn't want to pour it down the sink, since I figured maybe it would get better as the temperature of the beer rose. Big mistake. The spice flavours continued to dominate, and even grow in strength as the beer warmed. Man, it was like dumping a bunch of mulling spices in SA Boston Lager. Gross!
If I want a christmas drink with these spices, I'll mull some cider, or (if I want booze) make some gluehwein or some mulled mead.
Then again, I freely admit that I just don't dig spice flavours in my beer. If that's your thing, then you'd most likely love this beer. Enjoy it. I've got one that'll be sitting in my fridge for a while if you want it.

shbobdb, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of Tim460
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark reddish brown. Off white head that shrinks quickly but never dissapears. Lace clings to side of glass. Smells like caramel and chocolate with a hint of malt sweetness and cinnamon. Tastes much like it smells but somewhat spicy. Medium bodied, creamy. This beer is very filling for me and probably wouldn't want to drink anymore than the two offered in the holiday pack at a time. This is the main reason I purchase the holiday pack and I look forward for its release every year.

Tim460, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of chOAKbarrell
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one seemed much like a porter to me. It poured like one, with a rich, deep hue, and attractive head that took its time dying down.

The chocolate malts are out in force in the scent. You can also detect the orange peel slightly.

Again, the taste reminded me of a better quality porter. The caramel & toffee were noticeable, but not too overpowering. This was a very thick, almost chewy beer. Big points.

Robust & full of character! Perhaps the perfect follow-up to the disappointing cranberry lambic (which also comes in the Samuel Adams winter classics 12-pack), as it will totally take your mind off that previous beer. Too bad you cant get Old Fezziwig seperately. I would imagine it would be a brisk seller.

chOAKbarrell, Nov 16, 2005
Photo of OStrungT
4.72/5  rDev +25.2%
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.

OStrungT, Nov 16, 2005
Photo of santoslhalper
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%
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...

santoslhalper, Nov 15, 2005
Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 2,972 ratings.