Old Man (Winter Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Old Man (Winter Ale)Old Man (Winter Ale)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

1,436 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,436
Reviews: 549
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 12.23%
Wants: 44
Gots: 161 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 12-17-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,436 | Reviews: 549
Reviews by TheBrewo:
Photo of TheBrewo
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This brew was served on tap at MacGregor’s Grill and Tap Room in Canandaigua, NY. It arrived in a dimpled house mug, showing a rich nut brown coloring, with cola hues shimmering around its edges when held to light. One finger of almond colored bubbles sat atop the liquid, showing nice retention, and thick sheets of lacing as it disappeared. No haze or sediment was noted, and carbonation appeared to be active. The aroma sang of heavy, sodden moss, musk and dust, aged cheddar cheese, pale and syrupy caramel malts, fusel booze, ground mustard, cherry and strawberry fresh fruitiness, light floral hop oils, lemon essence, and sweaty saltiness. Our first impression was that there was a deep fruity sweetness that wasn’t entirely expected, but by the end there was enough muster and toast from the malts for a fine balance. As we sipped, the taste began with soapy and floral hops, maraschino cherry fruitiness, tangerine rind bitters, brassy metallics, brown and toffee malts, and fermented apple and strawberry fruitiness. The middle came to a peak with raspberry tea tannins, lemon and soapy hops, gravel, chunky yeast grit, toasted pine bark, brown and caramel malts, eucalyptus, and peppery booze. The finish came with nutty oiliness, port booziness and sweetness, pencil woodiness, lemon and orange flesh, phenolic chemical cleaner, dusty stone, and chalked yeastiness. The aftertaste breathed of tobacco leafiness, light charcoal smoke, wood lacquer, straw and dirty caramel maltiness, bitter cough syrup cherries, wheat bread toast, light buttery diacetyls, and orange rind bitters. The body was medium, and the carbonation was the same. Each sip gave great froth and slurp, but with lesser smack or pop to the lips. The mouth was crisply warmed, with biscuity dryness, and the faintest astringent lick to the tongue. The abv was appropriate, and the beer sipped well.

Overall, the best thing about this brew was its flavoring. While the aroma was nice and fruity, it gave way to a much more complex and bittered, with bite and metallic grittiness to the bone. All the while the fruit was echoing across the top, but dynamically, and not as strongly as the nose would suggest. This is not what we would classify as your typical “old ale”, but it did show strength of musk and depth to the grain bill throughout. This is one of Southern Tier’s last “major-line” beers for us to rate, and we feel it fits the pedigree well. We’ve probably been avoiding this guy in particular for so long on account of some local friends warning us away from it, but as locals ourselves, we will stand by this beer as a decent upstate seasonal.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Beerma
2.5/5  rDev -32.1%

Very bitter and heavy!
Bad after taste!

Photo of sharpski
2.5/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had better winter warmers from local breweries, no need to keep this middle of the road example from across the country.

Photo of oberon
4.11/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice clear bronze with a very tight,sticky white head that very slowly dropped leaving a sheet of lace behind.Aromas were not as big as I thought they might be brown sugar hard water and caramel mainly appetizing but not assertive.Great complexities and more assertive flavors though starts out with notes of brown sugar and roasted malt I noticed a hint of molasses but its not strong the flavors meld into a spicey,dry earthy finish showing off some hop muscle.Quite warming,yeah I know its a little late in the season for this beer but on a cold blustery damp day here in the Buffalo area it really hits the spot Iam gonna pair with some hearty meatloaf in mushroom gravy and mashed red skins Iam sure it will hit the spot.

Photo of MadScientist
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It only seemed appropriate to review Old Man Winter after snowshoeing in the 12 inches of snow that we got today.

A: A medium copper with good clarity. The head is thin but long lasting with creamy light-tan bubbles.

S: The aroma is kind of faint when it's cold but gets strong as it warms having a moderately-light hops aroma that is mostly citrus and a little bit resinous pine. There is a moderate malt with a clean sweetness, a touch of fruity esters and a slight peppery aroma.

T: A firm hops bitterness with a moderate hops flavors that are earthy, pine and citrus peel. There is some malt sweetness with a light bitter cocoa flavor but the balance is decidedly bitter. There is a low fruitiness from the yeast that is of light fruit. The finish is slightly sweet.

M: A slightly creamy, medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation.

O: Nicely bitter for an an Old Ale with a bit of hops in the and peppery phenols in nose. Many of Southern Tiers beer caters to the hops lover and this is one is no different but mostly just the bitterness. I has a good hops bitterness but still manages to be a bit on the sweeter side, though no where near as sweet as most Old Ales.

Photo of brownbeer
3.52/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear bronze color.

More hop forward on the nose than expected. Smells like a piney christmas tree dipped in caramel malt.

The taste is also leaning heavily toward the hops, with pepper and pine, and a malty strong ale backing.

Pretty middle of the road for me. Hop it and they shall come.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer was an amber color with a medium-sized tan head and a fair amount of lacing.
Aroma of caramel, brown sugar, citrus. Some sweetness also.
Caramel taste, grapefruit, a little piney hops. There was also some spice that I didn't notice in the aroma.
This was a real easy beer to drink. I think I found a new winter favorite.

Photo of shapudding
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured out a deep golden amber with huge amounts of milkshakey eggshelled colored head that finally settled down as about a quarter inch of froth. Killer head retention, very impressive. Tons of carbination seen rising up. Mainly malty scents, could not really get anything else from it. Creamy and thickish feel, very smooth. Alot of nice bitey hoppiness, peppery and dark toasty. Nice and spicey tasting, white grapefruit juice and grapefruit rind. Leaves a ton of flavor in your mouth -mainly the burnt toast and blackness. Schweeet....

Photo of Doomcifer
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clear darker shade of amber with a very good head that retains very well and leaves behind good lacing. Smells of citrus hops and some maltiness. Taste is very hoppy. This is not what I ws expecting at all...more like a very good IPA. Very well balanced between the great hop character and the malts. A certain spice element is present in the background but not along the lines of a traditional holiday spice like nutmeg or cinnamon..more like a spiciness from the hops. Good deal of carbonation, drier finish, and pretty crisp. Very drinkable and enjoyable. This belongs in the same vein as SN Celebration Ale. A Holiday IPA....only much better imho.

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Soft nose of toasted malts under a thin, subtle blanket of piney hops. Much more hop-forward in the taste, with the malt and hints of caramel quickly surrendering to pine and dried floral hops along the sides of tongue. Too unbalanced, especially given the style.

Photo of Jason
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Head retention is remarkable with a sizable froth to start and lots of stickage after. Clarity is fine. Deep malty aroma of dark sugars and raisins, hops are not to modest at all with a thick oily nose of tangerine and wild flowers. Creamy slick mouth feel with lots of body, maltiness tries to set in but the bitterness from the hops up roots almost all of the sweetness and holds fast with bitter herb and hard a dried orange peel flavor. This does fade a little and some warming alcohol and caramel sweetness comes through. Finishes bittersweet.

Perhaps some age would be good or not, I like it fresh right now. Bitter and heady. I am sure a little age will dull the hops and bring forth the sweetness in hopes that the alcohol ages just as well. A solid pick for the season.

Photo of merlin48
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear cola brown body with a small and creamy ecru head. Attractive patchy lace clings to the glass. Malty aroma with a hint of chocolate, spicy notes of ginger and orange peel, and some pine hops. Medium body and low medium carbonation. Taste is malty caramel with a hint of chocolate, atop spicy ginger and pine hops. A hint of orange peel. Very dry finish. Decent winter warmer.

Photo of Billolick
3.91/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A few 12 ounce bottles sampled, no freshness indication offered. Pours a deep, rich, glowing medium almond shade. Nose is tan and of typical size, the lacing here is quite impressive, fine, scattered, extensive. Nice looking brew. The nose is muted and just a wiff of malt came to me. This is a tasty, warming winter sipper.notes of maple, whisky and grainy hops late. Malty and smooth, I found this one to be quite pleasant and worthwhile for cold weather and holiday imbibing.

Photo of warriorsoul
3.91/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of many thanks to shippos for this winter ale from ST.
Pours a nice dark amber w/ a full finger and a half of light brown head...creamy and bubbly, but quickly reduces to half its original height.
Lace is real attractive...leaving a ring around the glass that holds on forever.
Aroma is a nice touch of carmelized malt...just a hint of hops. Semi-sweet at first w/ no alcohol present...7.5% ABV?
The taste is a real surprise...much sweeter than expected, but it is reminiscent of a aged barleywine...brown sugar and hops dominate for the first sip or two, until the malt backbone brings you back to reality.
Texture is real nice...not a thin beer. The aftertaste lingers a bit...leaving a bittersweet flavor.
This is my 3rd brew from Southern Tier and I am impressed. Nothing over the top...just great representations for the styles they offer.

Photo of Homebrew35
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a modest one finger head of off white foam. Nice clear light brown body. A good ring of lacing and some big bubbles remain. Smells initially of some earthy english hops. I also get some carmel, slight citrus, sweet malt. On the taste I get some carmel toffee sweetness at first. Then some resinous piney bitterness. A pleasant neutral moist finish. Maybe some smoky notes in there too. Light carbonation. Medium bodied. I enjoy the finish this neutral balanced clean finish. A touch of lingering bitterness but I can drink this quite easily. Nice job ST. $1.75 for the single.

Photo of tigg924
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: medium head, clear, copper, high carbonation

Smell: hops, pear, spices--maybe cinammon, and a touch of apricot--This one smells great

Taste: For all that wonderful smell, hops and grapefruit take over this beer

Mouthfeel: bitter throughout with a medium body

Drinkability: I expected more-especially coming off of the smell. This is very one dimensional as it is bitter and hoppy. There are better offerings in the style and Southern Tier has way better offerings.

Photo of Kraken
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard beer mug. Firm pour yields one inch of off white head that fades quickly. Nice lace. Pours a moderately dark copper amber.

Nose- Citric hops, lemon zest and grapefruit. Plenty of caramel and toffee notes.

Palate- A well hopped winter warmer. Light lemon zest, plenty of toffee and caramel notes. Some what thin. Immensely bitter and long finish. Very pleasant.

Mouthfeel- a bit thin with very active carbonation.

Drinkability- Very Good.

Photo of dogfishandi
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle at cellar temp poured into a pint glass. pours a maghony, bronze amber. nice off white biege head with goood retention and plenty of sticky lacing. clear, no visible sediment or cloudiness.

hops very noticable off the initial nose. light fruitiness, some cedar like wood, cherry, caramel malts. very interesting malt aromas.

resiny, citrus, piney hops perfectly balanced with a tasty malt profile. caramel, crystal malts, slight citrus- orange from the hops.

nice smooth mouthfeel, light on the carb, which compliments the taste nicely. some sticky resiny aspects from the hops. would not have guessed this one is 7.2%, drinks very easy, has somewhat of a warming effect, nice sessionable choice for the winter time.

had this one last year around this time, and seems very much the same. this is a wonderful truly balanced choice for the season, im very interested to see how this one ages and how the malt profile changes.

Photo of MattyG85
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep and clear amber orange with a moderate amount of rising bubbles. Decent three finger white head that quickly fades into a thin patchy layer. A good amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: Hop forward but fairly subdued. Citrus orange, grapefruit, and pineapple. Some bready malts in the background with some caramel and toffee. Also some hints of nuts and nutmeg. Aroma has a buttery characteristic.

Taste: Like the nose leads, forward with citrus hops but a lot more laid back than a IPA. Notes of grapefruit, oranges, and pineapple. Bready caramel and toffee malts in the background. Hints of nuts, butter, and a little nutmeg spice. Finishes with some earthy hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Finishes a bit dry. Very smooth.

Overall: A pretty interesting take on an old ale. Flavors are pretty laid back but whats there is tasty and well balanced.

Photo of far333
4.47/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Different label from the bottle pictured at top.

Clearr, light chestnut colored with a full inch high frothy head of meringue. Full of dimples, and sits right up and stays a while. Inviting aroma of malt and cocoa and spices.

Rich and thick mouthfeel leads to full-on flavors of caramel malts, cocoa and cinnamon, smokey bark, a touch of molasses and brown sugar. Flavor is rich and complex, lots of stuff going on here. A hop bite emerges in the finish and hangs out for a lingering piney/citrus peel aftertaste. ABV doesn't hurt the flavor but warms the throat and stomach. A very enjoyable winter brew.

Photo of yankeeheel
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very lovely amber with an equally lovely creamy eggshell head. Lots of lacing here. Smells faintly caramel in it's malt with the citrus of the hops coming to the forefront. Definitely a little estery. Tatses very smooth with a lot of chunks of some big sweet malt. A little nutty, a little toffee and then a really fast switch to a fairly hoppy ending. Mouthfeel is medium with carbonation present, but not overbearing. Very drinkable.

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip; deep brown-ish orange, like maple syrup. Moderate slimy white head that slides down and leaves wet lacing on top of a half-finger cap of foam.
Smell is bready sweet malt with sparse hints of fruitiness.
Taste is sweet malt, lots of dark bread, dark earthy herbals, and lesser dark fruit. Slight twist towards sour but doesn't quit get there, just ends with a dark, sweet fermented fruit flavor.
Mouthfeel is medium and smooth, finishes wet and sticky.
Overall, this is the lowest %abv old ale I've had (in fact I think it's the only one under 10%) but it still holds up pretty well against its high-gravity brethren. Good flavor, and still that 7% isn't anything to sneeze at, and a few of these will certainly warm you up on a winter's night.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.65/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Let me start with just stating how outstanding this brew is. Appearance: Ruby amber brown with a nice creamy tan head leaves a good amount of lacing not too shabby at all very nice appearance going down. Aroma: Piney hops awesome aromatics here huge caramel malts giving a roasted malt character that's well needed in the wintertime. Taste: Deliciously spicy this is where it's at the hops play their role down to the T with the caramel malt presence tying it all together what a dream beer Southern Tier strikes again my favorite new micro of the year by far. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with slightly oily texture just due to the amount of hops playing a role in this brew. Drinkability: Perfect winter in my eyes not too sweet perfect hop profile a masterful job done by an inscenduary brewing team up in New York some where.

Photo of chinchill
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.

Pours a clear brown with a thin off-white head. The head has rather poor retention and leaves almost no lacing lacing on the glass.

A fine mix of malts and earthy hops, There's a hint of cannabis in both the aroma and the flavor -- a reflection of the biological affinity of hops and cannabis? This "winter ale" is not spiced, at least not perceptibly so. Good, lingering, hoppy aftertaste.

Photo of glid02
4.17/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Porter Beer Bar in Atlanta.

Pours a slightly hazy dark copper color with a one-finger cream-colored head. The head recedes into a wispy layer ont op leaving decent lacing.

Smells of robust caramel malts with large amounts of pine hop aromas. Also present are lighter amounts of herbal hops.

Tastes good. Large caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined almost immediately by solid amounts of pine hop flavors. Midway through the sip the pine flavors fade just a bit, allowing a more earthy and slightly spicy hop flavor to come into play. Near the end of the sip a slight amount of toffee makes a brief appearance before giving way to the hops to carry through to a solidly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a nice thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I had no problems finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall I was a fan of this beer but I was expecting more a winter warmer, or at least some spices, after hearing the name. At times I thought I detected some spices but I'm fairly certain it was just from the hops, if anything. Still, this is a good beer that's worth a shot.

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Old Man (Winter Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 1,436 ratings.