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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.

1,192 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,192
Reviews: 517
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 12.74%
Wants: 33
Gots: 46 | 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
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Ratings: 1,192 | Reviews: 517 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tgbljb
3.28/5  rDev -11.1%

Poured a deep chestnut color with attractive off-white chunky head. Modest retention with great sticky lacing.
Smell is notable only for distinct alcohol note.
Taste have lots of caramel-toffee malt, but an overabundance of hops overpowwers all other taste sensatios.
Leave an austerely dry feeling in the mouth.
Very dissapointling. I expected much more.

tgbljb, Dec 14, 2007
Photo of John_M
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%

Had this on tap at Mahaffey's the other night. Franklyk, I'm amazed southern tier was able to make a special seasonal beer that is under 10% abv.

The beer pours a darkish copper color with a creamy looking head. There is good head retention and decent lacing to this one. The aroma is pretty enticing, with noticeable sweet malt superimposed upon a back bone of bitter citrus. There is a hint of spice, but the malt and hops really dominate the nose on this beer. On the palate one gets the sense of an aged ale, with nuances of sherry, along with some citrus and astringency in the finish. The beer is medium bodied and frankly the abv. is a bit more noticeable then I would like. That detracts from the drinkability, although the alcohol is not overly obtrusive.

This is a good beer, but not what I would call outstanding. I probably will not order it again.

John_M, Dec 07, 2007
Photo of dirtylou
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

12oz single, scooped a 6 pack at Riley's when looking for something different to quaff down as the heavy snows come. I drank this particular bottle in my Lake Geneva on a very snowy night

appearance: dark amber-mahogany body with a light tan head and minimal lace around the rim, clear body

smell: notable hop presence, caramel and nutty aromas, roasted malt, mollasses

taste: some sort of combination of a porter and an old ale and a few other things, but certainly not what comes to mind when i think of a standard old ale. strong roasted malt torched in a light boozy sauce, piney hops with a slightly metallic aftertaste, a touch spicy

mouthfeel: medium body, slick

drinkability: pretty good, but my limits 2

dirtylou, Dec 05, 2007
Photo of BeerBelcher
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%

This is an extremely nice, hoppy (not spicy) winter beer. I've been extremely impressed by the sudden array of Southern Tier beers available here in southeastern Wisconsin, and this is no exception.

This beer pours a rich amber color with perfect head formation of tiny bubbles compressed into a thick lid. Like all Southern Tier beers I've had, the body is clear and brilliant. Aroma is hoppy and very phenolic. Flavor is also hoppy, but balanced with abundant amounts of caramel malt (and I think a bit of diacetyl). Mouthfeel is smooth (the diacetyl helps, if it is in fact there) but a bit flat.

Quite nice, and definitely recommended.

BeerBelcher, Nov 28, 2007
Photo of ndekke39
4.2/5  rDev +13.8%

Drank a 12 oz. bottle of this, poured into a pint glass. Comes out a reddish-copper with a thin, white head. Good retention, a little bit of lacing on the glass. Nice winter smells of nuts, nutmeg, cinnamon, toasted grains. Dark, toasted malt at the center of the flavors. Again, a good warm quality. Mostly sweet and nutty on the tongue, like a lightly-spiced Brown Ale. Touch of bitterness in the aftertaste, almost like a dark macadamia nut. Medium-bodied mouthfeel, appropriate for the style. Overall, a nice, balanced session ale. Good for the season. Doesn't rely too heavily on gimmicky spices. Good example of the style - I will definitely remember this one!

ndekke39, Nov 25, 2007
Photo of iceball585
3.88/5  rDev +5.1%

A- Dark reddish brown color, non-transparent, very thin lacy cover head

S- Flowery hops, spices, scotch, hint of citrus

T- Strong hops flavor, burnt malts, spices, oranges, raisens, scotch, hint of cocoa

M- Medium body, low/medium weight, smooth, slight warming of alcohol near the end

D- Good but not quite a session beer

Not too complex but the flavors mix very well. The more you drink of this one the more you start to taste the alcohol.

iceball585, Nov 18, 2007
Photo of Jmamay22
3.2/5  rDev -13.3%

No bottled or best by date, but I believe this one is left over from last year. It should hold up well, but every bottle should be dated.

This beer pours a deep ruby red and not the typical murky brown I have grown used to for Old Ales. Nice sized head and retention that's slightly off white. Good sticky lacing no doubt aided by the hops.

Smells of citrus hops and orange rind. Very solid and smart use of hops. If this has aged it has aged beautifully. Smells a bit like a sedated IPA with spice.

Tastes hoppy still. I'm not sure how I feel about the current trend of winter brews that are big on hops and small on spice. I may not represent the masses, but I prefer a spiced winter ale. Mostly citrus hops, but there is a caramel malt background to hold things together. This really isn't an Old Ale at all. This is similar to SN Celebration or Santa's Private Reserve from Rogue. Enjoyable, but not what I expect or had originally hoped for.

Mouthfeel is disappointingly thin and rather lifeless. Very drinkable for its abv, but this will not serve as a winter warmer in the least. Really an improperly labeled beer.

Jmamay22, Nov 11, 2007
Photo of GFSchwab
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

A goood tasting beer, with a lot of unique spices to compliment the malts. yet at the same time you get a wollop from the hops. This is just in the nose of the beer. Upon tasting it I immediatley was overwhelmed by the alcohol content, which was much higher then I had expected, although it went along with the hopps quite well. Although that quality is something you would expect in an IPA and not a winter ale. That was the main thing I found odd about this beer, it was like an IPA with an identity crisis.

The aftertaste had a distinct reminance of the alcohol and hops, with sublt notes of dark cofee, and faint malts.

Overall a good beer, it just seemed like it was in between types, which took away from the overall intent.

GFSchwab, Nov 05, 2007
Photo of NJpadreFan
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

Southern Tier- Old Man

Singles at Circle Liquors- Pennington, NJ

A- Light cola brown with a small bubbly head.
S- Slight ash/ roasted hop, cocoa, and sugary malt.
T- Sweet, slighty burnt, brown sugar with a touch of cocoa powder.
M- Sweet and syrupy up front, finishes oily with a bit of alc. heat.

Overall- A session Winter Ale. Slighty sweet and cloying but polishing off 3-4 would be no problem.

NJpadreFan, Nov 04, 2007
Photo of merlin48
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%

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.

merlin48, Aug 11, 2007
Photo of IntriqKen
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%

Poured an orange-amber with a smallish white head that melted to a film of white and sticky white lacing.

Aromas of sweet amber malts and pepper with a hint of orange peel and bread dough.

Sweet malt only barely shows itself in the mouth with most of the flavors going to the bread dough, black pepper spice, and an orange peel hop finish. Bitter orange peel makes itself more well known as it warms and is quite pleasant.

Mouthfeel is slightly thin with a bitter finish that works well at drying the palette and making you look for another sip.

7.5% ABV is very well hidden. This feels more like a drinking than a sipping beer. Much lighter than the Old Ales I am used to.

IntriqKen, Jun 15, 2007
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.

jwff, May 31, 2007
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.

Grundle20, May 16, 2007
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.

bigdeuce, Apr 13, 2007
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.

Wildman, Feb 20, 2007
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

Atron67, Feb 18, 2007
Photo of trive
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.

trive, Feb 06, 2007
Photo of TheManiacalOne
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.

TheManiacalOne, Feb 05, 2007
Photo of rarevos
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.

rarevos, Jan 27, 2007
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.

Imstillthegman, Jan 16, 2007
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.

BEERchitect, Jan 16, 2007
Photo of RonfromJersey
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.

RonfromJersey, Jan 03, 2007
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.

Wasatch, Dec 29, 2006
Photo of SixpointJMH
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.

SixpointJMH, Dec 19, 2006
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.

Jredner, Dec 18, 2006
Old Man (Winter Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 1,192 ratings.