Samuel Adams White Christmas - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams White ChristmasSamuel Adams White Christmas

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BA SCORE
80
good

282 Reviews
THE BROS
78
okay

(Read More)
Reviews: 282
Hads: 1,531
rAvg: 3.49
pDev: 13.47%
Wants: 21
Gots: 269 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Witbier |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TMoney2591 on 10-22-2012

As crisp as the first snowfall of the year, this unfiltered white ale is blended with holiday spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, & orange peel. The familiar citrus and wheat characters of the ale are complemented by the warmth of the spices for a festive brew that's perfect for the season.
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Reviews: 282 | Hads: 1,531
Photo of brentk56
3.17/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy honey color with a rather modest head; the retention was not very impressive nor was the lacing

Smell: Banana, orange peel, cinnamon and nutmeg; more sweet than spicy

Taste: Overripe banana and spice cake flavors, up front, with increasing sweetness developing in the middle; though the orange peel was detected in the aroma, it is only vaguely present in the flavor profile, as this is much more about the banana and holiday spice flavors

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall: Wits aren't my favorite style and this is not one of my favorite Wits (599 characters)

Photo of PintOHops
3.16/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Glass - Pint

A - A hazy apricot colored brew with high carbonation and lots of haze. Small head fell quickly. No lacing.

S - Sweet bubblegum upfront with soft cracker and grain throughout. I get a bit of zest and subtle spice like quality in the way of cinnamon. That bubblegum like aroma is pretty over powering to me.

T - Wow, just about as sweet as I expected. Bubblegum, cinnamon, banana, and bread upfront. That cinnamon really comes through in the taste, a bit too much almost. It finishes with bread, cracker, malty sweetness, and a touch of bright citrus. Bitterness is almost absent.

M - Nearly full bodied with a smooth and chewy like feel. Carbonation is medium.

O - I think the beer is good. I can't say I would buy it again though. Tasty, looks good, smells inviting. The whole cinnamon/winter spice thing in a white beer come off a bit strange to me. Sam Adams makes it work decently though. Worth a try. Cheers! (931 characters)

Photo of are_doubleyou
3.14/5  rDev -10%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

L: Pours a pale orange with minimal white head that didn't retain any lacing. The beer is very cloudy, but has a good number of carbonation bubbles. Not very appealing overall.

S: Moderate aroma of spices. I smell orange peel, ginger and netmeg over some very light wheat notes. Nothing outstandingly aromatic, but decently pleasant.

T: A bit bland to start with, a light bread flavor hits the tongue initially. Light orange peel notes and nutmeg with a faint touch of cinnamon and the faintest touch of spicy hop flavor. The finish is mostly nutmeg with the orange peel lingering in the aftertaste. Nothing very bold, but this isn't a very bold style. It's light, balanced and refreshing, but forgettable.

F: Very light and watery. Some zest, but not enough to make up for the watery feel.

O: A pretty average Witbier. Nothing too offensive, but nothing that makes it pop. I'm mostly disappointed by the lack of zest and think the spices could be a bit bolder for a Holiday example of the style, but happy with the balance of the beer and the orange peel and nutmeg flavors are tasty enough to make it every so slightly above average for the style in my opinion.

This beer was poured from a 12oz bottle into a Blind Pig mug and enjoyed at apx. 55F. (1,254 characters)

Photo of Hopswagger
3.13/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

P: Cloudy piss yellow with a thin white bubbly head. No retention and minimal wet lacing.

S: Sparkling apple cider, wheat, nutmeg, cinnamon candy, mandarin oranges and dry yeast.

T/M: Taste follows the nose and packs a nice warming spice profile to tingle the palate. Powdery drying Belgian yeast hints of tobacco and apples. I get more apple than I get orange but its there. Spicy and citrus hops hit on the finish.

O: A nice blend of yeast and spices. Not overly dramatic but a nice sessional brew to enjoy during the holidays. (535 characters)

Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.13/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The beer pours a dark golden color with modest foam. Nothing special, but not too bad either. The aroma comes across with a bit of a sour lemon aspect mixed with spices vaguely reminiscent of the holiday season. This trend continues onto the palate with lemon leading to a sturdy wheat center. Cloves, nutmeg and other spices pick-up at the end. This brew has some odd notes to it and isn't put together in a particularly cogent way. The idea is just fine, but it could use some more tweaking. (493 characters)

Photo of tigg924
3.12/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance: 3/4 inch head, hazy, orange-brown in color, high carbonation

Smell: orange, cinnamon, and Belgian spices

Taste: bread, cinnamon, clove, light orange, an other Belgian spices.

Mouthfeel: sweet, light bodied with medium-high carbonation

Overall: An average witbier. I like the light holiday spices, but I would not get this outside of the holiday sampler. One of the weaker beers I have seen in the winter sampler. (428 characters)

Photo of portia99
3.12/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle (best by March 2013) poured into an Allagash stemmed glass.

A - Pours a muddy/cloudy pale orange color with a two finger cap of dense white foam with good staying power. Rings of foamy lacing are left on the glass. A bit darker than I expect out of this style.

S - Very fruity and spicy on the nose...oranges, nutmeg, cinnamon, brown sugar. Light malt backing - wheaty, bready and a bit yeasty.

T - Consistent with the aroma...lots of spices - same orange, nutmeg and cinnamon. Grainy malt flavors, wheat, good amount of yeast, sugary sweetness, estery. Spices weigh this down a bit.

M - Medium body with a higher level carbonation. Fruity and spicy...a bit heavy for the style. Juicy oranges, faint Belgian character - estery.

O - Overall, seems like a bit of a bastardization of the style. Tastes a bit "artificial" and forced to me. The added spices weigh things down and takes away much of the refreshment aspect I come to expect out of a witbier. Glad to have one, but think that is where it will end for me. (1,030 characters)

Photo of rundocrun
3.11/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Body is a hazy honey gold color. 1/2 inch of coarse white head forms and then fades to nothing. No lacing.

S - Candied oranges, funky hops, peppery belgian yeast, and an underlying vegetal smell not unlike many pumpkin ales I've had.

T - Sweet and tangy up front. Mild orange peel flavor as well as a healthy dose of dry wheat flavor. Hints of nutmeg and clove through the middle. A bit tannic in the finish with some white pepper and a metallic flavor.

M - Thin body. Vibrant carbonation. Dry finish. Quite drinkable. (525 characters)

Photo of bluejacket74
3.1/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle, best before March 2014. Oh well, better late than never! Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a hazy golden/amber color with a half inch off-white head that stayed around for a good amount of time. There's a small amount of lacing. The brew smells like nutmeg, cinnamon, clove and some orange and orange peel. It tastes pretty much just like the aroma, but with the addition of some wheat/bready malt. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit coating with moderate carbonation. Not a bad brew, but I wish I would have been able to try this when it was fresher. Hopefully I'll be able to this upcoming winter! (623 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.09/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a hazy, dark golden yellow color with lighter banana yellow hues and a one finger, frothy white head that quickly settles into a thin, lasting ring. Minimal spotty lacing left behind.

Zesty autumnal spice aroma with sweet citrus, malted wheat and a strong bread/yeast presence. Smells more like a fall beer than a winter/Christmas ale. Reminds me of a pumpkin wheat beer with lots of cinnamon, allspice and ginger followed by bread, banana, clove, cider and orange peel. Interesting approach to the style but not very inviting.

On the fuller end of medium body with a peppery spice presence that lingers over the yeast and sweet citrus notes into a slightly dry finish. Prominent zesty spice up front with clove, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and nutmeg followed by strong bread/yeast flavor, sweet citrus rind, banana, bubblegum, apple cider and subtle pumpkin. Tastes appropriate for the season but it's slightly watered down and the flavors don't mesh very well. Kind of bland except for being heavily spice and having strong wheat/bread flavor. Even the spice blend feels a bit generic and the orange peel is buried underneath the other notes. Okay for this time if year but not something that I would want to drink more than once. (1,242 characters)

Photo of Domingo
3.08/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Oh Sam Adams. Just when we think we're getting rid of the abundance of random wheat-based seasonals, another one comes out.
This one is essentially a holiday spiced witbier.
Looks more or less like a standard witbier. Light in color, foamy, cloudy. No issues here.
The nose has a little cinnamon and nutmeg, plus a distinct wit cirtus-y sourness. Maybe this won't be bad?
The flavor department is really where this one falls apart. Strong cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg hit right away. It's like a pumpkin or holiday beer gone wild. the problem is that on the back end, there's the Sam Adams wheat roughness that only works in a few beers (like Summer Ale). Here it doesn't. Instead it's all spice on the front, wit sourness in the middle, and all husky bitterness on the back end. I don't mind spiced beers, but this one is all out of whack.
No problems with the texture, and I suppose if you're really really into massive spice notes or don't mind that weird back-end, this might be drinkable for you. Maybe non-beer drinkers would like it, too.
A novel idea that just doesn't work. I really wish Boston Beer would stop with the forced wheat seasonals. This might work as a blonde, lager, or porter but as a wit it just doesn't...at least for me. (1,246 characters)

Photo of AgentMunky
3.08/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a tulip glass. Best before February 2013.

A: Hazy honey-brown with noticeable effervescence and a short-lived white head.

S: Sweet fruit. White peaches? Lightly tart. Spicy clove.

T: Not the best. Fizzy and drying, with spices that are simultaneously heavy-handed and underwhelming. The body is light and wheaty, with a vaguely soft-fruity endtaste.

O: Meh. Mediocre beer, but still not bad. Drinkable, but not recommended. A 'meh' witbier. (479 characters)

Photo of tjsdomer2
3.07/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Tradition orange wit color. Definitely flat, with no foam or lacing at all, but the color makes up for this.

Smell: Lots of nutmeg and clove with a hint of orange peel as advertised. Kind of a fruity eggnog. A bit sour in the finish.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Just a hint of nutmeg. There's really nothing else in this. Quite watery also. There's really just no bite in the finish.

Overall Drinkability: One of the most average beers I've ever had. I rate it as such overall. (481 characters)

Photo of RJLarse
3.07/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Part of the Sam Adams Holiday Sampler. Only this and the chocolate bock are left. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a pale yellow gold color, clear with a thin fizzy white head.

Smell is sweet, soft fruit aromas, pears and raisins, with some spice notes.

Taste is also sweet with a sharp cidery flavor. Mildly bitter sweet after taste.

Moutfeel is crisp and clean, with a dry feel.

Overall not a great wit. The flavor is a bit off. It tastes un-fermented. Blue Moon is better. (480 characters)

Photo of Jadjunk
3.07/5  rDev -12%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3

"As crisp as the first snowfall of the year, this unfiltered white ale is blended with holiday spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, & orange peel. The familiar citrus and wheat characters of the ale are complemented by the warmth of the spices for a festive brew that's perfect for the season. Cheers!" White Christmas is brewed in the style of a Witbier. Date ticked on bottle is mid-April 2013. Available as a part of the (now waning in availability) Winter Classics holiday pack, in pairs of two each. I am curious to see how this compares to the Samuel Adams White Ale, which was last available (in my region) in the Spring of 2011.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a Samuel Adams pint glass. Served upwards of 49º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours fizzy head of a golden white complexion, very crisp and loud and somewhat hasty to recede. Body color is a pale golden yellow with a great deal of murky haziness. Visible carbonation is plentiful. Even on a beer clean glass, there is no lacing to behold. Head quality and the overall appearance is underwhelming. 2.75

(Smell) Aroma is reminiscent of candied ginger, dry cinnamon sticks and a pinch of ground nutmeg, with tart orange rind, unripe raisins and cereal wheat malt body lying underneath. There's potential lemon juice characters too; the aroma is slightly tart with a lesser sweetness. Spices are forward but closely balanced with the body; there's nothing overly "perky" about the aroma, causing for an approachable aroma if not all that exciting or merry. Potency is medium at best. Murky is another adjective I'd give to the aroma as well, it's just not as striking as I'd have hoped and none of the plentiful characters that I picked up on really take the foreground to define this beer. 3.25

(Taste) Wheat presence is certainly more evident in the flavors than I picked up in the aroma, but the cinnamon and nutmeg spice blend and much of the bright citrus notes take a back seat to an ordinary wheat malt profile with a chalky drying finish. In the depths of the flavor are faint notes of cinnamon and nutmeg but overall the taste is even more one-dimensional than the aroma was, with many of the subtleties drowning out in the wheat malt base. Aside from an unusually dry finish and a faint spice profile, there is little else about the flavor that differentiates this beer from a more summery and bright Witbier. Some increased sweetness would have also been more enjoyable. Underwhelming in flavor. 2.75

(Mouthfeel) One of the more perky things about this beer is the texture. The carbonation is just shy of full-on spritely, accentuating the spice blend and balancing out the chewiness of the wheat malt textures. Body is medium amongst Witbiers and light amongst all beers. Alcohol presence is faint. This is an enjoyable carbonation level and would even better compliment a more flavorful Witbier. Unfortunately, it only further calls attention to what the beer lacks in flavor. 4.25

(Overall) When it boiled down to flavor, White Christmas came down to little more than a chewy wheat beer with a faint and dry cinnamon spice blend. I was hoping more ginger and citrus character would be preserved and a touch more sweetness would have also helped improve drinkability. I distinctly remember enjoying White Ale significantly more and hope they either patch up the issues with this beer or return that old classic next holiday season. 3

Boston Beer Company's
Samuel Adams White Christmas Ale
3.05/5.00 (3,478 characters)

Photo of SAxDRC5
3.06/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: hazy yellow with a white head. leaves no lacing, no head retention.

S: nutmeg, cinnamon are very noticeable. there is also corriander and slight citrus

T: Spice is overpowering for me. It's like the smell of my grandma's house is covering up a pretty decent witbier.

M: light, bubbly on the tongue. I personally would prefer less carbonation. not bad by any means but nothing special.

Overall a pretty average beer. would be improved with better head retention, less spice/more beer taste, and slightly less carbonation. (527 characters)

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.06/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up at the COOP today and enjoying while making dinner.. great foamy white head... nice retention and lacing.. the brew is standard hazed light golden..

Nose is warm spices.... nutmeg and a lesser but present cinnamon... orange peel is also there.. pale maltiness helps bloom the spices and makes them really jump out of the glass.

Flavor mirrors the nose with a sorta flat doughy malt profile.. Thankfully the spices are not as prevalent as the aroma.. still though, the nutmeg and cinnamon are the major players.

Body seems thicker than normal for a witbier, but somehow is right in line for a winter spiced beer.. Decent for what it is despite my aversion of spices in beer.

Okay... Not my cup of tea (though Xmas spices belong in tea, not beer).. I will not buy it again, but I think it will be a hit with folks who like this type of brew.

4/3/3/3/3 (865 characters)

Photo of gcamparone
3.06/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Samuel Adams pint glass. Purchased at Wakefield Liquors in Wakefield, Rhode Island.

A- Pours a very hazy, golden orange with a 2" white head. Little lacing/retention.

S- Oranges and corn. Maybe some faint clove in the background.

T- Oranges and citrus, but really no authentic spice flavor here except maybe a hint of cinnamon. Tastes like a cheap version of blue moon.

M- Medium carbonation, slightly thick.

Overall I was unimpressed with this one. I had to choke down the last few sips. Not a winter style in my opinion, either. (573 characters)

Photo of VelvetExtract
3.06/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Cloudy orange. Huge, downy white head. About an inch and a half of height. Leaves mild lacing. Body is far more orange than the pale white normally associated with a Wit.

S-Orange peel and coriander. Spiced wheat. Mulled cider. Quite spicy. I quickly notice the sweetness that I will soon be experiencing. A spicier Witbier.

T-Sweet and spiced. Toasted wheat. Nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger. A tickle of pepper? Gingerbread. Caramel covered nectarine skins. Consistent maltiness.

M-Fuller bodied Wit. Massaging carbonation. Slick and semi-sticky.

O/D-Sam has put out a couple neat beers recently. This one is more dud than stud. 85% Witbier, 15% Winter Warmer. Weird little guy. Damnit, I can see two or three bottles from this six-pack becoming refugees in the fridge for a month or so. (791 characters)

Photo of GregBlatz
3.03/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Golden in color. Yeast suspension causes an expected haziness. Head is white and settles quickly. I imagine that this is going to be like a Wit with some additional holiday spices. My first impression is that this has more color than a typical Wit.

S - Orange peel, coriander and I'm guessing grains of paradise. Sam Adams can't seem to resist the 'grains of paradise'. I just read the bottle and it mentions nutmeg but no GOP. Not a lot of phenolic or yeast character in the aroma.

T - This is on the sweet side for a wit. Think more along the lines of Blue Moon than Hoegarden. Not necessarily a bad thing, but I tend to prefer things a bit dryer. The spices are a bit on the aggressive side for my taste. There is a bit of phenol character shining through.

M - Fuller mouthfeel than I expected. Very carbonated.

O - It is a nice beer. Not my favorite but as always, Sam Adams makes a competent brew that may please a lot of people. (943 characters)

Photo of Zachior
3.03/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.25

Pros
- Very smooth almost to a fault
- Balanced spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, orange peel)
- Great lingering aftertaste
- Creamy finish

Cons
- Milky texture that may venture to far away from beer.

Notes - A safe brew by Sam Adams yet compelling enough to bring the similar nostalgic feeling of hot chocolate on a cold winters morning. Another great beer by Sam Adams, thanks again my friend! (389 characters)

Photo of Retroman40
3.01/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A - Pours out a somewhat cloudy with an almost orange tint.

S - The added cinnamon and nutmeg are very dominant, particularly the nutmeg. I could not sense any malt or hops.

T - As expected, the added spices overwhelm the malt and hops. The finish is very much nutmeg.

M- A very rich mouth feel, almost creamy.

O - I got this as part of case of "Winter Favorites" but it's not a favorite of mine. I don't mind a little spice in seasonal beers but this was just too much. Even a spiced beer should still taste like beer. If you like a lot of spice, this one is for you; otherwise not so much. (595 characters)

Photo of JohnnyI
3.01/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured aggressively, creating an enormous white head that fills the tall weizen glass to the rim. After a minute or so, the foam receded leaving a rice-cake like layer floating atop the golden, honey-colored ale. Minimal lacing. Although slightly hazy, the appearance more closely resembles a blonde ale than a wit. The label promises cinnamon, nutmeg and orange peel. True to form, bright citrus scents greet the nose. Sweet pineapple, blonde malts and popcorn compete with hints of the aforementioned spices. The flavor is maltier than I expected, and the citrus is dialed in more than the aroma would lead one to believe. Pretty well balanced, as there is a fair amount of complexity, but it comes together in a way where little comes to the fore. The thin mouthfeel and light carbonation are bolstered marginally by the faint wheat haze. Ginger, nutmeg and a hint of grain in the finish. On the positive side, this is a pretty non-controversial beer. One could easily mistake this for a somewhat generic American lager with a little holiday spice added. I would have liked to see them go a bit bolder with this one. Also, if they are going to market this as a witbier, aptly named "White Christmas", then it should at least stay more true to the style. A whiter, wit-like appearance & less clarity. The underlying brew in this one is just not up to the task. The refreshing summer pale wheat ales just don't have the chops to compete with the darker spiced holiday offerings. I get what they were trying to do, but this one just doesn't move the needle much for me. I would gladly trade this beer for more Old Fezziwig, or even some of the past beers that have graced the winter seasonal 12-pack. Holiday Porter & Cherry or Chocolate Bock are all welcome replacements. (1,773 characters)

Photo of NilocRellim
3/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer poured from the bottle and was cloudy gold/yellow in colour. Smelled slightly of hops and spices; mostly ginger and cinnamon. The taste instantly reminded me of gingerbread. Slight hop and wheat after taste.

Would I buy this beer again? Probably not. (262 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - Pours cloudy, pale orange with a white, half finger head. Subpar retention results in sparse lacing.

Smell - Smells of pie crust, nutmeg and cinnamon.

Taste - Follows the nose. Heavy on the nutmeg and cinnamon spices, with a pie crust malt flavor. Faint hint of coriander as the beer heads for the finish, and a subtle wheatness peaks through at the tail-end of the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Light in body, with an almost fizzy carbonation.

Overall - Not very impressed. Reminiscent of their Harvest Pumpkin ale, minus the hints of pumpkin. Is it drinkable? Yeah, but I wouldn't want to buy it again, and I'm hoping it's a one-and-done in the Winter pack. (672 characters)

Samuel Adams White Christmas from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
80 out of 100 based on 282 ratings.