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Old Man (Winter Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

539 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 539
Hads: 1,438
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 10.11%
Wants: 47
Gots: 163 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Man (Winter Ale) Alström Bros
Reviews: 539 | Hads: 1,438
Photo of shand
3.06/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a mug.

This beer pours a very deep brown, wood-esque colour with a fingers wroth of head that retains well. The aroma is a little strange. It's a mix between heavy, sweetened malts and bitter, floral hops. The taste is also a little out there. It's a mix between an old ale, and an imperial IPA, in a way. It's both heavily malted, and heavily hopped. However, I feel that the malts are just way too strong, making this an extremely unbalanced beer. The fig/raisin notes don't help this matter. The hops remain, trying to shove their way into the forefront, but all they do is unbalance the beer and make it a difficult drinker.

The mouthfeel is alright, it's medium thickness and carbonation. The drinkability is alright as it goes down, but the overwhelming aftertaste really hurts it. As a Southern Tier fan, I'm a little let down by Old Man. It's just not very good, the flavor never quite meshes together correctly. It's almost like they threw everything they had in the bottle, and it never quite works right. (1,053 characters)

Photo of tai4ji2x
3.06/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle. no date found. poured into tulip.

dark, deep copper. clear. moderate, off-white head fades to a single wisp and thin ring. some lace.

resiny pine hop aroma dominates, with hint of citrus zest. some caramel maltiness and esters in the background, but very faint. almost metallic at times.

flavor is hop-forward as well, resinous with pine and grapefruit rind. caramel is far off into the background. aggressive hops give a bold bitterness as well. trace of alcohol and phenols in the back end.

body is light, almost watery, but some resinous texture. carbonation is a bit too prickly.

too one-dimensionally hopped, with almost no malt presence. will this age well? i don't think i'll even bother to find out... (727 characters)

Photo of Naes
3.08/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This ale is dark amber in color with a small white head.
The aroma is not much to speak of, but has a slight hop nose.
The flavor has more hops than I expected; moderately bitter with a caramel malt base.
Mouth feel is medium bodied and moderately carbonated. (262 characters)

Photo of waughbrew
3.09/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear mohogany with a thick creamy creme-colored head that laces very well. Piney, woody, and molasses aroma. Smells earthy like a brown ale but as it warms some spiciness appears. Fruity hops that have gone papery. Toasty, toffee, ginger, and molasses in the flavor. Thick and slick, this comes off a little candyish, which I tend to like in a beer, but this is kinda dull. A refreshing bitterness comes in at the finish, but the flavor just seems weak. Overall it is not something to seek out, but certainly pleasant nonetheless. It improves as it warms, so serve this one barely chilled. (590 characters)

Photo of Jeffreysan
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a pretty, cloudy, golden, copper/amber color with a quarter of a finger of white-colored head that quickly dissolved into a thin lacing of foam that almost completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Very aromatic. Lots of floral, grassy, piney hops, blending with the bready aromas of toasted malt.

Taste: Hoppy up front and slightly bitter, but the hops quickly fade to a malty backbone, which imparts notes of freshly baked bread, some brown sugar and caramel-like sweetness. The hops returns at the finish to provide a slightly bitter finish. It’s ok, but not really my cup of tea, or rather, my pint of beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, with some ok carbonation. With an ABV of 7.0%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is not one of my preferred beers from Southern Tier, or in general, in fact. It just has too much hoppy bitterness for my tastes. Hop heads should love it, though. (978 characters)

Photo of TopherRI
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I ahve come to expect much more from southern tier. the old man winter ale tasted like nothing more than an ipa with the possibility of some seasonal spices. definitely the least impressive product to bear the souther tier name. I suppose it is difficult to follow the PumKing up with any other seasonal. (304 characters)

3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a wine glass.
A: Nice bit of head retention, with a quality coating of sticky lace. The body is a amber that has a very clear appearance to it.

S: low on the intensity spectrum, with a subtle note of a sweet oak, that is a classic old ale aroma.

T/M: A bit weak for an old ale, while still holding true to being a nice winter warmer. The front is a spice that rounds out into the middle of the body. The consistent taste of Southern Tier is present. While being a nice light malt profile there is a need for more flavors, the end is much too quick and in need of some age or something beyond my powers. Malts sweetness peaks the body to a quick release that shows expressions of toffee and ends with a nice and very subtle roasted note.

D: This was a very good brew to do in a tasting, But I would not come back to this brew or even get more to see how they age, because fresh was a little bit of a weak, let down. Goes down easy. (950 characters)

Photo of CraftBeerTastic
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ba Review #91
Served On: 12/16/2011
Glassware: Pint Glass
Labeled ABV: 7.7%
Date/ Code: 2011 Release

Scored a 6-pack of this at Ye Old Spirit Shop in Frederick, MD. This was my first experience with an offering from the infamous Southern Tier.

Look: Poured a clear medium copper color. Reviews of this brew from years past (on YouTube) seemed to suggest a darker color than what I got. It sort of resembled a darker East Coast IPA as opposed to an Old Ale. Head was a single finger of tan foam with a frothy consistency. Had typical carbonation levels.

Smell: Slight hops with some sweetness. Again – reminiscent of a darker East Coast IPA with the pine and spice.

Taste: I had some trouble finding any characteristics of an Old Ale here. First was a resiny pine with some light spice. Middle was a bitterness that coated the entire mouth. Finish was a light bitterness that faded into a semisweet malty aftertaste.

This was an average brew that I don’t believe lived up to an Old Ale, but would make an excellent IPA for the winter season. One comparison that came to mind was Heavy Seas Winter Storm - based on the hop profile and bitterness levels. Also Winter Storm didn’t seem to match its style either (labeled as an ESB). (1,242 characters)

Photo of HappyHourHero
3.11/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a small off-white head that faded fast and left a smattering of lace. The smell is funky, a combination of hops and burped up corn. It's a fairly transparent beer and dark amber in color. The body is on the light side of medium, and the carbonation makes for a smooth mouthfeel. The flavor reminds me of a hopped up lager, and the finish is only slightly bitter. (369 characters)

Photo of Lerxst
3.11/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Love ST and love Old Ales, so I was pumped to see this on the shelves. This is the first release of Old Man since ST started distributing in my area. 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A-Pours a clear copper with a substantial off white head that has good retention and leaves much sticky lace. Looks good.

S-Faint wisps of bready malt and earthy hops. Thats about it. Nose is not unpleasant at all, but very subdued and understated.

T-A slightly sweet malt hits first then a bitter bite from the earthy hops come in. Maybe a touch of molasses as well? As with the nose, the taste is pleasant but subdued.

M-Almost medium bodied. Crisp carb bite that I thought was a bit distracting, but still slightly creamy.

D-It just doesn't inspire me to have another.

Overall, I love ST. But I'll skip this one from now on. Its not bad, just not memorable. (854 characters)

Photo of PorterLambic
3.12/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours the color of iced tea, a dark orange with brown throughout. Good sized head that settles to 1/2" of foam. Some nice lace left behind.
Smell is good with a balanced attack of malt and hops, citrusy with a touch of smoke and pepper.
Taste is quite a bit hoppier with malt playing a supporting role. Alcohol shows up then splits, a cameo role.
Not as full-bodied as one might expect. Carbonation is pretty strong. Finish is dry. Though there is an aspect of warming, it fades pretty quickly. (496 characters)

Photo of hippityhops85
3.15/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured on draft into a 3 oz tasting glass.

Pours a crystal clear burnt umber with a thin eggshell head. Reminds me of some of the English barleywines I've had.

The nose has lots of cinnamon, nutmeg, piney hops. Not bad.

The taste is pretty one noted with a malty bitterness with a dash of cinnamon and hops. Flavor falls apart at the end palate.

The mouthfeel is overcarbonated and thin. Not desirable.

There are much better examples of and Old Ale I would reach for before trying this again. (498 characters)

Photo of DagFishHead
3.16/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Copper-amber body with reddish highlights. Head is frothy and reddish tan. It faded quickly to a thin cap with spider-web lace.
Smell: Strong, pepper-spice hops, sweet caramel malt, hints of banana, butterscotch, and vanilla.
Taste & Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied semi-sweet malt with smoke, some mustiness and even a slightly burnt character, subdued carbonation and mellow alcohol warmth at the top... then finishes dry with a bitter/spicy aftertaste.
Drinkability: This is a decent old ale, but too hoppy IMO, and the burnt characteristics were somewhat distracting. (579 characters)

Photo of JamnesCameron
3.16/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a MJ tasting glass.

Pours a deep copper with an egg shell head of about two fingers. Head drops after a few minutes for about half a pinky, with some lacing.

Aromas of caramel malts, citrus hops. Not a very complex aroma mix.

Flavors of citrusy hops, grapefruit and orange, caramel malt. More of an APA, not my idea of an old ale. Missing the malty complexity of an old ale. Finish is rather short, with the grapefruit and orange hops lingering toward the fade.

Mouthfeel is medium. A little sticky.

Overall, misses the mark as an old ale. Good winter warmer/ESB (americanized). (595 characters)

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.18/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

appearance: Clear orange brown with a big fat off white head.
smell: Doesn't sniff like an old ale. More like an IPA that's on the mildly hopped side.
taste: Not sure what to make of this. Not bad, but not particularly good. Tastes like an AMerican IPA and an ale all mixed up.
Maybe I'm a little too hyped since most ST brews I've had have been kick ass. Hoped for a heavy duty Old ale or Winter Warmer. (404 characters)

Photo of williepep
3.18/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark amber color. Medium head that clung to the mason jar mug all the way down, though it did not leave distinct rings.
S- The nose was very hoppy which dominated the sweet maltiness that was barely detectable.
T- The taste was similar to the smell with the hops nearly overwhelming the malt. However, it was quite smooth, especially considering the somewhat high alcohol content.
M- A medium-bodied, medium-carbonated brew. Could have had more of the former and less of the latter.
D- Quite drinkable even for a beer of relatively high alcohol content.

I was somewhat disappointed in this brew, as it did not meet my expectations for a seasonal winter ale. I am not a hop-head, nor do I think a seasonal brew should be heavily hopped. I do think that spice should play a part, however, and I detected very little if any spice in this beer. Nevertheless, it was a pleasant and drinkable beer (895 characters)

Photo of champ103
3.18/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear copper/orange color. A two finger white head forms and recedes in a minute. Some sticky lace is left behind.
S: Up front is a zesty and spicy hop aroma with some citrus. That fades to some caramel sweetness.
T: Follows the nose. Kind of hoppy up front, and finishes with some malty sweetness. That is it.
M/D: A medium to full body. Low on the carbonation. Fairly creamy and smooth. Not a huge alcohol content for the style, but still some burn. A sipper.

Just kind of bland. There is some hops and sweetness, and that is it. Not really an Old Ale to me. Nothing bad, just middle of the road. Especially for one of my favorite styles. (652 characters)

Photo of ChadQuest
3.18/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear copper color, with a huge sticky head, with tons of lacing.

Sweet malty aroma, with grassy/floral and citrus notes.

Sweet malt, nice crisp hops that balance it perfectly, ever so slight fruity presence. Nutty start that finishes a bit more citrusy.

Smooth mouthfeel, with a very clean finish that's very inviting. Very easy drinking for an Old Ale, the 7.2% helps with that too.
It's a Nice Old Ale that's quite on the Milder and Lighter side of the style, yet very nice. (486 characters)

Photo of russwbeck
3.2/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Golden brown pour, head boasts minimal retention, but some lacing.

S: Smells of a bit of piny hops and caramel malts.

T: Taste starts of a bit with spices, which give way to the hops. A sweet and malty aftertaste with some hop bitterness.

MF: Medium bodied with a nice amount of carbonation.

D: Not all that high. The aftertaste began to get to me after a while. (369 characters)

Photo of Jmamay22
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

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. (1,125 characters)

Photo of dgilks
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Lovely copper colour with a small, but persistent light tan head.

The aroma is a little musty with some light caramel, toffee and earthy hop notes. I'm getting the feeling that Southern Tier likes some hops more than others as I am getting a similar hop aroma here to that in their Raspberry Porter.

This is an interesting take on a winter beer. The initial attack is full on with lots of malt and toffee flavours. It then flows into a lot of bitterness without much hop flavour. What is there is a little earthy (Willamette maybe?). As a whole it doesn't do much for me as it seems unbalanced.

Medium-light body with moderately high carbonation. It's okay but not what I expected.

This is an okay beer. It has flavour but the bitterness is out of balance with the rest of the beer and adds a harshness which I don't appreciate. (832 characters)

Photo of HopsYeast
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a-pours a medium dark amber color with a clear body and zero sediment. has a 3/4 finger pale head that actually holds for quite some time and leaves a decent amount of lacing.

s-mostly smell hops with some subtle malt aroma. there is a sweet spiciness lingering in the nose that is a vanilla/chocolate smell. spicy citrus with cloves.

t-has a somewhat unimpressive flavor. there is a nice hop hit in the beginning that is then quickly muted out with a a fruity flavor. i honestly dont find it too complex. tastes is one dimensional.

m-light body and drinkable with a tingle of low to medium carbonation. this beer can be consumed quickly but there isnt much to the body at all. watery almost.

o-its not horrible by any mean. but it is a somewhat let down from S.T. as i have grown to enjoy more and more of their beer this year. will try again in the future but look more forward to their fall releases than this winter one. (931 characters)

Photo of MaineBeerGuy
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Beer pours an amber brown color. Beer has a white head with lacing that follows the beer down the glass. The Beer has a bitter sweet caramel flavor. Alcohol comes through; I was actually surprised that it was only a 7.2% beer.

I can't place it exactly but this beer doesn't work for me. It seems to be just missing something.

Not a bad beer; just not for me. (415 characters)

Photo of tigg924
3.26/5  rDev -13.3%
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. (480 characters)

Photo of peabody
3.26/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

This is a very filtered brew. Clear amber liquid with 1 finger of slightly off-white suds. Some lacing around my glass.
Aroma is charred malts and pungent hop/yeast burn in the nose. As it warms it gets a little more sugar in the nose with molasses and brown sugar.
Taste is a tad watery for an old ale but the alcohol is very well hidden. A slight dirty flavor at first then the malt coats the back of the mouth and the bitter hop comes to the front. There is some booze left on the palate at the very end of the taste right before the black bitterness of the charred malts takes over.
Mouthfeel is very sharp and black for the most part. You don't get the alcohol burn at all as you do from most old ales. So I take it this one is slightly weak.
Overall I still like this mishmash of flavors and wouldn't hesitate buying this again.
Pretty nice beer. (853 characters)

Old Man (Winter Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 539 ratings.