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!

Old Man (Winter Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,181 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,181
Reviews: 516
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 13.01%
Wants: 33
Gots: 43 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Jason on 12-17-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Man (Winter Ale) Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,181 | Reviews: 516 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jwff


4.3/5  rDev +16.5%

Pours a dark orange with red hue and very little carbonation/head. Smell is sweet english malts with orange rind/pepper/bread. Taste is a blend of pepper, tea, sweet malts, orange peel oils, and bittering hops in the finish. Very interesting beer that keeps me guessing. Solid mouthfeel with just enough carbonation. Not really thick, but a little slick. This beer has a lot going on and I'd love to sit down with a 6... on my day off of course.

05-31-2007 05:40:42 | More by jwff
Photo of Grundle20


3.68/5  rDev -0.3%

From a rough pour a semi viscous dark brown beer produces a small off white head. There's little head retention to note but some patchy lacing is produced.

Some sweet caramel malts blend well with some fresh citric hop character to build this beer. There are some underlying notes of dates and raisins with the malts.

Taste and Mouthfeel:
There's some up front grassy hop character with a raisiny bitterness. This melds in to a smooth and semi viscous middle with a raisin and bittersweet chocolate taste. In the finish there is just a touch of sulfur and some mouth coating bitterness in the finish.

With a semi high ABV and rich malty flavors this is striking me as a cold day kind of beer. It's pretty good but not something I would want to drink too many of.

Bottom Line:
It's a pretty decent beer. I doubt how true it is to other old ales with a hop profile like this one has. I would almost call it a barley wine but who am I to make the rules.

05-16-2007 01:23:55 | More by Grundle20
Photo of bigdeuce


3.65/5  rDev -1.1%

A pretty nice warmer here, not sure if it is an old ale. More of an American strong, but yet, not overly hoppy in the slightest. Some nice tangy malts on the front end, bordering on overly sweet. Can't detect the actual fruits but it is somewhat fruity. Nice head great lacing also. Pours a dark, dark ruby red almost black. Smells of sugary plums and peaches. A nice brew, very strong, and highly drinkable.

04-13-2007 00:13:19 | More by bigdeuce
Photo of Wildman


3.63/5  rDev -1.6%

This beer poured a dark red amber color and formed an off-white foamy head that coated the glass with lace as it subsided. A medium amount of carbonation is also present. An aroma of malt, hops, with caramel and spices. The flavor was of malt, slightly of chocolate and pepper. The body was medium light and the finish was a bit bitter. Not really sold on this one, but then I am not big on Christmas style ales anyway.

02-20-2007 03:26:00 | More by Wildman
Photo of Atron67


3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

A- pours a pretty dark, brown, but not dark enough to trap all the light coming through, had a slightly small head but stuck around for awhile.

S- a little woody, sweet malt with a real nice smell very nice

T- has a very earthy taste, kinda a bit of caramel but some definet wood tones, spicy, maybe a little cinnamon. pretty good but caramel isnt a personal favorite flavor

M- kinda light for its darkness but overall a medium body pretty solid, hits the tongue well and lingers a little while

D- a nice beer, the caramel isnta personal like but for those who do its a really good beer

02-18-2007 02:28:35 | More by Atron67
Photo of trive

New Jersey

4.08/5  rDev +10.6%

poured into a pint glass: this beer has a light brown/amber color and smells primarily of hops with substantial malt in there too. the taste really reflects the smell nice and malty but with a pleasant hoppy taste and a nice, smooth mouthfeel, crisp without being too carbonated. i'm not the biggest fan of hoppy beers but this beer really impressed me. good job, southern tier.

02-06-2007 03:12:27 | More by trive
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

2.55/5  rDev -30.9%

On-tap 2/4/07 at Pitcher’s Pub in Cumberland, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color, with a decent-sized off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malt, spice and a good amount of hops.

T: Pale hops along with some dark fruits are the most prevalent flavors in the taste. I found it to be quite bitter, but it was not a pleasant hops bitterness. It was more like a bitterness that comes from a lack of flavor. Some vanilla flavor comes out a bit in the after-taste, which is also mainly bitter.

M: Very crisp but not very smooth at all, medium body, medium carbonation, very dry finish.

D: Not very tasty and doesn’t go down very easily, this one just seems to fall short on many levels. I just didn’t like it, which surprises me because I’ve really liked everything else that I’ve had from Southern Tier.

02-05-2007 23:41:41 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of rarevos

New York

3.88/5  rDev +5.1%

Poured into pint glass.

A: Pours a translucent copper with a 1/2 finger's worth of white head. Head becomes a crown and a big island pretty rapidly. No lacing left behind.

S: Can immediately smell fruity hops, with a sweet malt presence underneath. For specifics: a bit of citrus, some dry (and earthy) herbs, like basil. Also has brown sugar and raisin. Almost vinous-like grape kick at the back of the sniff.

T/M: Lightly vinous and malty up front, with some dried fruit sweetness (raisin) and spice (cinnamon, hint of licorice). Finish has a slight bitterness to balance some grape-y sweetness, and it finishes dry.

D: I don't think the point of a fairly strong winter beer is to drink a few, so I'm not sure how drinkability works into the equation here. The first time I had this, I didn't care for it so much. I'm glad I didn't review it then, instead waiting to read up on the style, try another Old Ale (Southampton 10th Anniversary), and give it another go later on. I'm glad I did, as I'm enjoying the beer far more this time around.

01-27-2007 04:19:05 | More by rarevos
Photo of Imstillthegman


3.98/5  rDev +7.9%

Is it just me or does the bottle in the hand logo on the bottle caps look like a gun? Anyway...here's my review.

Old Man pours out a darker copper with a light tan head. There is a little bit of lacing sticking to the glass.

Aroma consists of caramel, brown sugar, spices, citrus hops, and a touch of yeast.

The flavors mimic the smell and adds some nuttiness to it. Nice blend between the malt and the spice of the hops.

Medium body with good carbonation. Tacky dryness with a semi bitter aftertaste. Not bad...not bad at all.

01-16-2007 16:40:26 | More by Imstillthegman
Photo of BEERchitect


4.22/5  rDev +14.4%

A beer truly worth warming up with. Pronounced malt flavors and feel, but balanced and spiced with flavoring and bittering hops (I'm guessing English?) The malt presence is firm and shares flavors of caramel, dates, nuts, pecans, and toffee. These are equally present in aromas as flavor. However the hops lurk in the background aromas, but are bold in their bittering. A medium grassy / piney hop flavor spices up the flavors and linger a bit longer than the malts. The beer is bold, solid, and firm, yet not heavy, cloying, or chewy. A good beer that eats like a meal. I do recommend.

01-16-2007 02:41:22 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of RonfromJersey

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +8.4%

Rddish copper body, good clarity, still, topped by a healthy hefty slab of oatmeal colored froth. Slowly breaks down into a concave snowscape. Good lacing.

Earthy nose, with a faint wisp of vanilla. Some hint of a Christmas sugar cookie. Smidgens of fruit. It's not big, but its nice if you work at it.

Sweet caramel and toffee taste base slides gracefully across the tongue. Quick lick of warming alcohol is then swept up in a big wave churl of earthy hops that balance the sweet and clear out the alcohol in a big and quick splash. The tide rolls down the throat and the aftertaste manages to feature a turn from both the candy and alcohol sweet malt and a low level hop tingle.

Fine full mouthfeel, not syrupy, but substantial.

As winter warmers go, good drinkability, though I'd probably hold at two at a time, just in search of variety.

While not a big epic, it's still good for sipping before the fire, and can go with food. A solid multi-purpose winter beer.

01-03-2007 23:51:08 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of Wasatch


3.88/5  rDev +5.1%

Thanks BuckEyeNation

Pours a clear dark amber color, nice big creamy off-white head, nice carbonation, lots of lacing afterwards. The nose is sweet/malty, slightly hoppy, some citrus going on, licorice, and some caramel. The taste is sweet, malty, slightly hoppy, nice bitterness on the tongue. Medium body. Very drinkable, quite a nice/different Old Ale, recommended.

12-29-2006 01:40:16 | More by Wasatch
Photo of SixpointJMH

New Jersey

3.85/5  rDev +4.3%

Pours a crisp amber colour with a fairly big somewhat creamy head that dissolves fairly quickly but leaves a nice mess on the glass.

Aroma is a nice blend of sweet caramel malt, some orange and/or other citrus notes from a nice hop balance that counters the malt and provides a bit of pine aroma as well, along with a touch of spice here and there.

The flavour is sweet and a touch juicy basically all the way through but is cut nicely by a bit of hearty, bready earth flavour and some spice once again. Hop burps are a bit bolder than expected as well .Mouthfeel is medium bodied and just about what was expected.

This one was good overall. Nice flavour and nice balance. A good winter ale to pick up if you see it.

12-19-2006 04:14:09 | More by SixpointJMH
Photo of Jredner


3.85/5  rDev +4.3%

The body is a dark ruddy brown with a firm, creamy and quite lasting off white head. Very attractive beer. The aroma is hoppy with some sweet crystalized sugar spiked malt and a faint hint of toastiness.

Fore is medium hop bitter with pine notes, medium sweetness malts and more mild toastiness. The aroma tells you exactly what to expect. Added warmth gives it nutty and sweeter malt flavors. No real faults with it. No real stellar pluses either, save the beautiful appearance.

12-18-2006 17:08:40 | More by Jredner
Photo of klewis


2.9/5  rDev -21.4%

A: Pours a drak copper with a small bubbly head. Specks of lacing on the glass.

S: Yeasty phenols and a bit of citrus.

T: Overall, the taste is bland bitter with a slightly spicy taste that reminds me of oxidation.

M: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation.

D: This is definitely not an old ale. Drinks more like an overly hopped winter warmer. Drinkable, but nothing special.

12-06-2006 20:21:52 | More by klewis
Photo of Px2GrafX


3.68/5  rDev -0.3%

clear burnt red with an off-white fluffy head. very nice lacing. aroma is of clean american hops. smells like an ipa. very clean mouthfeel as well. initially sweet, maybe caramel apples, with a mildly hop bitterness and a nice hop flavor. lightly citrusy and grassy. finish is dry, a little bready but clean and lightly bitter. little to no aftertaste. very easy to drink. this is not a bad beer at all, but it's a far cry from an old ale. more like an off-color, high gravity apa.

12-05-2006 03:19:23 | More by Px2GrafX
Photo of far333


4.47/5  rDev +21.1%

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.

11-11-2006 01:32:37 | More by far333
Photo of GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +8.4%

The beer poured into the glass lightly hazy deep copper wtih a low tannish head which lasted well enough to lace the glass, but never got any higher than 1/4".

The aroma was malty with a strong caramel malt presence. The aroma had a lightly mineral character and an earthy and slightly piney hop presence in the background. The aroma was lightly floral and somewhat fruity with just light hints of alcohol.

The flavor was malty but with a strong kick of hops. The hop bittering kept the malt in check and in the end the balance was more toward bittering. The hops were melded but were earthy and lightly piney with an aged resinous presence. The malt was filled with caramel and some mineral presence.

The finish was even heading toward dry with a lasting hop presence on the palate into the aftertaste. The body was just below medium full and the carbonation was on the lower side. A nice winter ale, listed as an old ale, but more hoppy than many old ales tend to be.

12 ounce bottle. Thanks hoppedup!

09-01-2006 23:39:33 | More by GCBrewingCo
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +12.5%

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.

05-22-2006 22:57:13 | More by oberon
Photo of Kendo

New York

4.1/5  rDev +11.1%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Coppery in color with a small white head that left some decent lacing.

Smelled malty, perhaps yeasty, with just a wee bit of hops.

Taste surprised me. I was expecting more of a spicy, "winter warmer"-style ale but it seemed more like an IPA or an APA, though with just a touch of piney, citrusy hops to justify the "winter" designation. The hoppy bitterness dominates, but there is a malty balance underneath those hops. I noticed a tad bit of alcohol; more so as it warmed up.

As for mouthfeel: moderately carbonated and medium bodied. Again, a tad lighter than I expected for a winter brew, but not a light-bodied beer at all.

I felt this beer was highly drinkable, though I was sampling it in May, not on a cold winter's night when maybe I'd want more spicy notes than hops. The hops dominated, but with a decent malt undertone. In some ways it's similar in style (though not necessarily in head-on hoppy taste) to the Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale.

All in all I enjoyed this beer.

05-20-2006 13:27:45 | More by Kendo
Photo of garymuchow


3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

Sample courtesy of SS '05. Thanks fella's

Aroma is a sweet fruity malt with a nice hop balance of some flower and grass. Fresh and pleasing
Dark amber of browns with orange. Clear. Nice sturdy and stable head with drippy lacing. Good looking beer.
Flavor is less sweet yet still malty up front. Stronger hop presence with both bitterness and flavor, which leads to a dryness experience without being that dry. Hints of bittersweet chocolate. Ultimately short on the malt experience.
Nice fullness and heaviness. Warmth.
Not a traditional old ale with so much emphasis on the hops and a significant lack of sweetness and malt complexity. Taste is good, just lacking malt.
Year of sample is uncertain, but I'm guess late fall '05.

04-15-2006 19:06:09 | More by garymuchow
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +7.9%

A nicely hopped old ale. The hops first come forth, than a bit of roastiness, mollasses like a porter , and then the full old ale. Satisfying finish.Spicey aftertaste. Caramel and sugar. Medium plus mouthfeel. Another good one from this brewery. Very drinkable with food.

03-26-2006 04:06:25 | More by Sammy
Photo of Celt44

New York

3.9/5  rDev +5.7%

Appearance is a dark copper. Head dissipates rather quickly but lacing last throughout.
Malt is the aroma that jumps forth first - hints of ginger and cinnamon spice present also. Hints of coffee there, similar to a good stout. Alcohol is present.
Mouthfeel is excellent and malt taste is not overbearing. Hints of ginger are present. This is probably the best tasting Winter brew I've experienced in quite a while. This is the first time I've been able to get Old Man which is unusual because the brewery is right down the road here in upstate New York.
Overall I highly recommend this seasonal winter brew. I like SA Winter Lager, but this is by far a superior beer.

03-25-2006 01:43:27 | More by Celt44
Photo of edchicma


4/5  rDev +8.4%

Dark copper with a pillow head that dissipates quickly, but with decent lacing. Smell is very inviting..a combination of sweet carmely malt wioth nice hop notes. Taste has an initial sweetness that reminds me of molasses but with a hint of undefined fruit. After the initial sweetness, there is a definite hop presence that hits past mid-palate and remains throughout...an interesting combination. Mouthfeel is initially chewy, but fades into dryness. I can sense the alcohol underneath this all and this was a tad harsh which affected drinkability.

03-16-2006 23:07:16 | More by edchicma
Photo of babydoc


3.58/5  rDev -3%

Poured from a 12oz bottle kindly provided by shippos as part of SS-05. Color is clear, diluted cola, with a foamy head that faded fasted than I'd hoped. Sticky bits of lace persisted. Nose sweet, with a surprising amount of hops for a winter ale- but I like hops! Creamy, moderate mouthfeel, drying towards the finish.

Taste is malt tempered with sweet grapefruit zest. There's a bit of alcohol there as I'd expect in this breed. As it warms there's a hint of cinnamon. Hops predominate in the aftertaste, and the malts back away...

Thanks, shippos, for the chance to try this one.

03-11-2006 05:04:37 | More by babydoc
Old Man (Winter Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 1,181 ratings.