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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams White ChristmasSamuel Adams White Christmas

Educational use only; do not reuse.

282 Reviews

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Reviews: 282
Hads: 1,541
Avg: 3.48
pDev: 15.52%
Wants: 22
Gots: 284 | 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: 1,541
Photo of JamesMN
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Enjoy by April 2014.

Appearance: Pale golden and ultra hazy. One finger of off-white fluff.

Aroma: Dry yeast, esters of candied fruits. Almost a pumpkin/squash quality to it but without the added spices of a pumpkin ale. Hints of citrus.

Taste: Falls right in line with the aroma. A buttery squash flavor adds depth and some sweetness. Some lemon cuts through, keeping the buttery flavor from becoming cloying. The spices are somewhat subdued but it works well that way. Finish is bright and the high point of the spice contribution. Aftertaste of ebbing spice. Not much for hop character in general, but enough bitterness for a crisp feel. At 5.8% ABV its got the right amount of flavor and robustness at a drinkable ABV that warrants a second glass.

Mouthfeel: About medium in body with a great soft texture. Carbonation is right where it should be, my pour was semi-aggressive. Solid drinkability and in that sessionable range, though the flavor may get cloying after the first.

Final Thoughts: I'm not a Samuel Adams fanboy, far from it. However, White Christmas proves that the brewers over at Boston Beer Co know their stuff. Crafting a beer that could please joe six-pack and serious beer geeks as well is rare. Nice job. Would I drink it again? Yes.

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Photo of TheMarkE
3.74/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Cloudy orange/gold with a quickly disappearing head.

Smell: Orange, cinnamon, nutmeg.

Taste: Orange, cinnamon, nutmeg, and malt.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied, slight aftertaste from the spices.

The Verdict: Very good. A witbier with a subtle blend of spices that don’t overpower the tongue, this is one of SA’s better seasonal offerings. If you’re a Blue Moon or Shock Top drinker, give this a try.

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Photo of Das_Reh
1.5/5  rDev -56.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

I'm not rating this one accordingly, as I'm fairly positive I had a bad bottle. It was actually my cousin's, who is just starting to get into craft.

Tasted straight from the bottle. Didn't take the time to take in the aroma, but assume it is the typical wit nose. Taste was very bland and watery, no flavor, with a sharp astringency that left me with cottonmouth. No wheat, coriander or orange peel, just astringent seltzer water.

As aforementioned, pretty sure it was a bad bottle (my brother did drop this one, perhaps he broke the seal and it went flat or something). May try again in the future.

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Photo of watermelon
3.89/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Part of Sam Adams holiday sampler.

A: Cloudy gold color with a white 2 finger head, fair amount of lacing.

S: Lots of allspice and coriander as well as some orange.

T: Follows the nose, could be a bit more complex.

M: Creamy texture nice crisp carbonation.

O: I really enjoyed this I found it to be an excellent Witbier with a holiday twist.

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Photo of Zachior
3.03/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.25

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

- 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!

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Photo of dogfishandi
3.92/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter. Best before APR 2014 notched.

Pours out a nice hazy glowing light orange color, creamy white head off the pour, after a few minutes fades to a ring, no real lacing.

Decent aroma, has some nice but somewhat subtle Christmas spices you'd typically find in a winter warmer in a witbier. Nutmeg and cinnamon most noticeable, some orange peel as well

Again, a nice combination of those winter warmer spices and crisp, tangy wheat malt.

Fairly light, crisp, refreshing, and drinkable.

A pretty decent example of a wheat beer with a nice twist.

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Photo of Captain_Komamura
3.66/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - it is a hazy amber color, with a head that goes flat.

Smell - it is of the spices and the orange peel, with a hint of the wheat.

Taste - a nice orange/wheat taste; with the spices giving it a dessert like taste.

Mouthfeel - good-bodied, although a bit too much carbonation.

Overall - This is a really good Christmas dessert beer from the holiday spices.

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Photo of jadpsu
3.19/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Not a wheat beer guy. As wheats go this one is subtle enoughwith the wheat, clove side that I can rate it.
Pours a very hazy yellow with a white head.
Surprised at how little I pick up in the aroma area. A little orange peel and a slight clove spice.

Taste: Like I said the wheatiness of this wheat beer is not strong, but nevertheless (and as it should be) you pick up what characteristics.

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Photo of PaulyB83
3.35/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured from 12oz glass into a Guinness glass

A- Pours a medium hazy golden wheat color with a medium white head that dissipated to a thin film.

S- Spice from both added spices and yeast, some orange zest is detected. Some banana from the yeast.

T- Kinda of thin for what I was getting on the nose. Some more of the orange zest, and more subtle spices in the taste compared to the nose. Not a big lingering aftertaste, slight bitter citrus.

M- Pretty light and thin, could use more depth.

O- This is an okay beer, nothing that great, probably comparable to Blue Moon which I would go with over this one. Got this one in the '13 Winter Favorites pack and wish they would have left one of the 3 spice beers in there out and put the Holiday Porter or something in instead.

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Photo of scratch69
3.7/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I poured a bottle into a Samuel Adams glass.

Appearance- Hazy, light gold color with a fingers worth of rapidly disappearing head. Light amount of runny lacing.

Smell- Strong orange peel aroma with a hint of wheat malt and some spices.

Taste- Orange peel flavor with some wheat malt and just a touch of nutmeg and cinnamon.

Mouthfeel- Light bodied with an average amount of prickly carbonation.

Overall- I like the holiday spices they used, I just wish they would have toned down the orange peel a tad. Still it is an interesting take on a witbier and I would drink it again.

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Photo of tigg924
3.12/5  rDev -10.3%
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.

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Photo of JackMcAwesome
3.71/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Included in the 2013 season of the Winter Pack.

Pretty standard affair, label-wise. Not as majestic as a couple of the others.

I poured this into a pint glass. It pours a hazy light gold, with a one finger head that shrinks rather quickly to a thick ring around the sides. Lacing is on the minimal side. Not bad in any way really, so a standard 4 from me.

Smell: I'm not really picking up anything but the orange peel. There's also a wheat-like aroma as it warms up, but not much else. The orange peel is nice, but it'd be nice if there was a bit more of something else to mix it up a bit.

Taste: Yep. Orange peel. I'm getting nothing of the nutmeg and cinnamon they claim on the bottle. A wheat/malt factor at the end, but it's mostly just the orange peel. With that being said, it still taste pretty decent, just not much in the way of complexity.

Feel: Light and silky. Moderate carbonation.

Overall: Not bad, not sure I'd pick up a six of this, but pretty decent in a seasonal pack. I've only had three other "Witbiers" so I can't really compare too much to the style, but as a beer, it's pretty decent.

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Photo of DeFaz
3.46/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Pours a somewhat cloudy white color with a yellow tint. Head is medium and retention is pretty good.

Smell: This smells unlike any other beer I've had, and it smells great. There are aromas of orange, cinnamon, and nutmeg. It smells just like Christmas.

Taste: As good as it smells, the taste is rather disappointing. The spices are fairly faint and the citrus and spices is a little odd. There is no hop presence at all, and it's not as yeasty as it could be.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is fairly low and the beer is on the thin side, even for witiber. It goes down very easy but is just a touch too thin. However, it is refreshing.

Overall: It's hard to deny that this beer will satisfy most beer drinkers and even those who generally avoid beer during the Christmas holidays because it is refreshing. The smell is fantastic, but the taste is not very bold, and like most Sam Adams beers, it seems more tailored to the commercial audience.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.29/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle with an expiration date of March 2014. Sampled on November 15, 2013.

It has a mostly golden to orange pour. The fizzy white head erupts than diminishes.

The aroma brings out some malt characters along with citrus and spice as well a slight hope note.

The body is light to medium

The taste is really quite typical of a wit with the toasted pale malt notes, citrus, and mild hop bit. But it feels generally clean all the way through.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours golden with a nice frothy head that lingers and laces well. Nose is of spice, mostly nutmeg. Light body with good carbonation. The taste is subtle, but of spice, with it being more nutmeg than anything else. Finishes cleanly with a slight spiciness that lingers. A solid non-complex beer, but not outstanding. It needs more flavor, be it from more spice or dark malt.

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Photo of vkv822
3.31/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz : pilsner glass

Very slightly hazy golden yellow with a fizzy, foamy white head.

Nutmeg, cinnamon upfront, light floral and crackery notes.

Light blend of cinnamon/nutmeg spice, subtle citrus, and a grainy, malty backbone.

Medium body, crisp finish. Light, fizzy carbonation.

A good beer, though a bit subtle flavor profiles overall.

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Photo of Hopswagger
3.13/5  rDev -10.1%
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.

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Photo of zac16125
3.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a hefe glass
Best before: April 2014

A: Pours a golden apricot orange with 1.5 fingers width of white colored head. Lots of carbonation bubbles can be seen rising to the top of the glass and help to keep a think film of head retention throughout the entirety of the drink. Leaves a few small patches of lacing.

S: Orange, clove, nutmeg, wheat. Really nice.

T: Pretty sweet upfront with lots of wheat on the backend. A bit of citrus. Not much spice at all. Ok, but not nearly as good as the aroma implied it would be.

M/D: Full body, heavier than many in the style, moderate carbonation, pretty filling. Drinkability is average.

O: Overall, not bad, but not great. I'm not a huge fan of witbier's, and dont really consider them winter seasonals, so I likely wont be purchasing this one again. Worth a try though.

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Photo of goochpunch
2.48/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours out a hazy brass with a barely there head. Smells of crackery wheat with definite cinnamon and orange. Not picking up much Belgian yeast. Spices are pretty strong in the flavor. Too sweet and not enough yeast character for my expectations of drinking a white beer. Mouthfeel is way to sticky and definitely lacks carbonation. I don't get why they have three beers in their holiday mix pack with essentially the same spice profile (White Christmas, Winter Lager, and Old Fezziwig). Not feeling this.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.48/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with typical simple Sam Adams label art and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired as part of the 2013 winter variety 12 pack box at me local HEB grocery and served into an Avery stem-snifter in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are average given the brewery. "Ale brewed with spices." Reviewed as a witbier because the label identifies it as an "unfiltered white ale." Best before: March 2013. 5.8% ABV confirmed.

Served cold - straight from me fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a 1.5 finger wide head of white colour. Average thickness. Subpar creaminess. Decent consistency. Inconsistent but even lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. No "legs" on this one. Head retention is average - about 2 minutes.

Body colour is a cloudy lemon-orange - clearly unfiltered. Translucent yet nontransparent. No yeast particles are visible. Looks a bit too dark for a witbier, most are bright, vibrant, and yellow.

Not unique or special. I'm optimistic. There are no obvious egregious flaws.

Sm: Artificial lemon fruit. Nutmeg. Artificial orange peel. Pilsner malts. Belgian white malts. Belgian pale malts. Clove. Coriander. Floral hop character. Wheat. Some citrus zest. Some limited banana. Vague hints of bland fruitcake. Not a real fresh aroma.

No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

A pleasant if artificial aroma of average strength. Far from unique or special. A witbier should be fresh and inviting, with a crisp wheat aroma. This is not. The spicing and fruit are also underwhelming. Not real evocative or appealing, but it's not offensive.

T/Mf: Wheat, pale malt, pilsner malt. Too full-bodied and heavy on the palate for a witbier. It should be fleeting, light, and refreshing, but it isn't. Smooth and wet. Overcarbonated

The texture isn't perfectly married to the taste by any stretch, but it suits it in a general sense. Okay presence on the palate. Not astringent, harsh, oily, hot, gushed, or boozy. It hides its ABV pretty well.

Hop profile is entirely floral, though the artificial fruit could emerge somewhat from the hops as well as from whatever fruit extract/syrup they used. I get vague orange peel, a hint of lemon, and vague citrusy zest. Spices also feel artificial and in no way fresh: stale ginger, fake cinnamon (cassia), coriander, clove, and nutmeg. Boy, I wish the fruit peel was much more fresh and evocative, but there's zero authenticity there. Real fruit makes a huge difference.

Little complexity and subtlety here. Very shallow depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour. I'm not huge on this one, but it's by no means intolerable or offensive. Pretty boring. Misses the mark for a witbier.

Dr: The macrobrewing of Sam Adams definitely hit this one hard. I'll probably garnish the other bottles of this with some lemon; I rarely do that unless the low quality of the beer demands it (see Blue Moon). It's downable - I'll easily finish the bottle - but I'd like to see this winter seasonal go away. Not a keeper by any means. A throwaway witbier from Sam Adams that I wouldn't get again or recommend to friends. Well below average. I might honestly prefer Blue Moon.

Not worth aging.

Pair with mediocre food and/or bad news. Leftovers, take-out, getting dumped, and a bad day at work will fit the bill.


11.12.14: Truncated impressions:

A: Unremarkable appearance. Pretty generic witbier.

Sm: Lemon. Wheat. Nutmeg. Maybe ginger. Average in strength.

T: Generic, with some artificial spices.

Mf: Overcarbonated and biting. Crisp.

Dr: Downable but low-quality. Another garbage Sam Adams seasonal beer. I'll avoid this in future. Sam Adams' own Blackberry Wit is volumes better.


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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.84/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Type: 12-oz. bottle
Glass: Karl Strauss pint glass
From: VONS in Normal Heights (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $14.99 for a winter variety 12-pack
Purchased: Nov. 1, 2013
Consumed: Nov. 1, 2013
Misc.: Enjoy by March 2014

Poured an orange hazy color with 2-to-3 fingers of off-white head. Sporadic spots of lacing along the sides of the glass. Average retention on the top.

Smelled a lot of different notes combined into one. Got orange peel, cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread, molasses and even a bit of pumpkin. Some other wintry spices in there as well.

Tasted a lot like the smell, but a little lighter. Got orange peel, nutmeg, cinnamon, molasses, gingerbread, cinnamon sticks and honey wheat .

Light-to-medium body. Oily-to-creamy texture. Average carbonation. Long finish.

I really enjoyed this one. I’d definitely have it again. Just a lighter winter beer.

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Photo of Fergyx825
3.98/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: an orange cloudy pour with medium head and some remaining head after the pour. This is perfect for a witbier.

Smell: Smells of spices, coriander and a little bit of citrus hit my nose as i inhale this beer. This smells very similar of most witbiers. Nothing stands out to me.

Taste: A very sweet squashy taste. It is not so much a citrus smell consisting of orange or lemon, but more pumpkin or a sweet squash. I also notice the spices in this beer, this reminds me a lot of a pumpkin ale. I wasn't expecting this but its tasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, but a light beer. This doesn't couple itself nicely with the rest of the beer. Witbiers are supposed to be lighter than most beers, but this is a happy medium.

Overall: this was an interesting change up on a winter seasonal beer. It was a witbier with hints of a squashy taste. I really enjoyed it.

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Photo of Samp01
3.46/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy pale golden yellow with a medium off white head. Aroma and Taste of sweet biscuit malt, wheat, yeast, with some light spicy fruity notes and some mild bitterness. Palate is a medium body, crisp with moderate carbonation. Finishes with a combination of sweet malt, wheat, yeast with some light spicy fruity flavor and mild bitterness, slight nutty flavor on the end. Overall a good drinking session ale.

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Photo of claytri
4.66/5  rDev +33.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

The beer pours a nice light gold with a crisp white head that has real staying power. The aroma is pretty much aniseed, but at a very pleasant level and character. Since that's what I expected (and what I liked about it) it works for this beer. They really did a great job with the taste on this one. It has a nice light malty character with good fruitiness, and then the Aniseed at just the right level to be all over it, but still allow the other tastes there rightful place. A home run Wit in my opinion. The feel is light and a bit oily. This was one of the best efforts for a Wit I've had in a while. Great job with the spicing.

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Photo of gmfessen
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, White Christmas is a hazy, straw-golden color with a thin, creamy white head. The most obvious part of the nose is the spice boquete, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, nutmeg, ginger and allspice. The level of unchecked spice smell actually makes the nose a bit nauseating. The level of spice is fairly high in the taste as well; however the nice balanced, toasty, malty backdrop it enhances fares much better in flavor than in smell. The mouthfeel is quite pleasant, medium in body with a chewy, slightly creamy carbonation. Overall, not a favorite of mine by SA, not my favorite Witbier - but if you're looking for a "Holiday" beer, this would fit the bill.

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