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Winter Ale - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Winter AleWinter Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

621 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 621
Reviews: 354
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 14.66%

Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is not spiced.

(Beer added by: Todd on 09-24-2001)
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Ratings: 621 | Reviews: 354 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of superspak


3.68/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, 2013 bottling. Pours lightly hazy deep ruby brown color with a 1-2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of raisin, plum, prune, fig, caramel, toast, molasses, biscuit, brown bread, herbal, light chocolate, and toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of dark malt and fruity yeast ester notes; with solid strength. Taste of raisin, plum, prune, apple, caramel, toast, biscuit, brown bread, molasses, light nuttiness, light chocolate, herbal, and toasted earthiness. No bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, plum, prune, apple, caramel, molasses, toast, biscuit, brown bread, herbal, and toasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice balance and complexity of dark/bready malt and fruity yeast ester flavors; with great robustness and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a creamy and lightly slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice english brown ale. Good balance, complexity, and robustness of dark/bready malt and fruity yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 01:53:38 | More by superspak
Photo of JD_Lombardi


3.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was a refreshing change of pace for a Winter Ale. To the nose, I found it to smell slightly of bitter chocolate, with the same in the taste.

It reminded me of a lesser Young's Double-Chocolate Stout to some effect. But for me, in terms of winter seasonals that is a compliment.

Not overly carbonated and not something I could see chugging. More of a sit back and relax-er.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2014 00:52:48 | More by JD_Lombardi
Photo of ONUMello


3.05/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass
A: Dark brown color with a one-finger head that quickly settles
S: Nutty, malty, some sweet caramel but I can also smell the metallic note that is somewhat of a detractor. Average overall
T: Matches the nose. Toasted walnuts, caramel, sweet malt up front but the finish turns bitter and metallic with an unpleasant finish
M: Medium-bodied initially, pleasant carbonation but thins out a bid towards the end with a bitter finish
O: It's rare that I dump a beer but I wrote the review drinking half of the glass & the rest went down the drain. I usually like Weyerbacher's beers quite a bit but this was a disappointment

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2013 05:52:14 | More by ONUMello
Photo of rangerred


2.95/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear dark brown with a one finger white head that fades fairly quickly into a thin cap. No lacing at all.

Aroma is toasty and a bit nutty There is a sharp and fairly prominent metallic note that distracts quite a bit from the aromas that are supposed to be there. Maybe a tiny bit of grass underneath.

More metal immediately in the flavor. Once again this is a big drawback. Dark caramel and toast along with some light milk chocolate. A hint of grass from the hops underneath but it is quite faint. Bitterness is on the light to moderate side and the mouthfeel is quite watery.

Overall, a very lackluster beer. Way too much metal and watery. Underwhelming all around.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2013 02:22:28 | More by rangerred
Photo of Fergyx825


3.29/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: a dark brown/black beer. Mild head on the pour, it sticks around for a little while. This meets the description of the beer style. There is no description on the bottle!

Smell: Very nutty, and malty. I don't smell much in the notion of fruit, but this is definitely dry.

Taste: malty taste, then it goes to alcohol. Very dry. Not very hoppy, and its just a plain taste. You can taste the hints of alcohol in the beer itself. I am not a fan of this, but i guess it is accomplishing its taste via its style.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation, but its more thick than normal. This beer is harder to drink in quantities regardless of its attributes.

Overall: This accomplishes what it set out to accomplish, but this is nothing to brag about.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2013 01:09:02 | More by Fergyx825
Photo of dvmin98

North Carolina

2.78/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

Bottle, served in a Founders Pint Glass

Nice amberish color with very little head and a small amount of lacing that lasted for about a couple minutes.

Smell of raisins and figs

Taste is raisiny and dark fruit with a with some maltiness

Mouthfeel is very thin bodied; almost watery. Get a fairly decent alcohol presence. A little burn in the back of my throat.

Overall, I am drinking this in July as I got the 6er for a $1.99. What the heck, right? I got about 3/4 through it and drain poured the rest. Will give the rest away. May try it fresh to see if its any different.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2013 01:11:47 | More by dvmin98
Photo of dacrza1

New Jersey

3.05/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Date Rated: Feb. 2, 2013...
Glassware: Corsendonk tulip...
Occasion: Hunger games watching....thirsty work...
Appearance: dark ruby-purple body with a decent off-white head; laces sporadically...
Aroma: fruity, peaty with doughy malts and some smoky hints...
Palate: fizzy and warm--a Weyerbacher hallmark--and a bit dry; full-bodied and lasting in its finish...
Taste: grapey, wine-tinged porter with a cola flavor, black and caloric; neither here nor there in terms of memorable...
Overall: the W brand has settled slightly with its alcohol overload mission and seems to have attempted a more restrained approach here; the winter may need more distinguishable notes, but its serviceable at house parties and before the fireplace...

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2013 01:29:04 | More by dacrza1
Photo of dheacck11


3.25/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pour is a pale mahogany, very cola like. Thin tan 1/4 finger of head that vanishes instantly.

nose is raisiny sweet. Not really in a good way.

Taste is again just too sugary sweet. Some notes of raisin, bread, malt, but overwhelmingly like brown sugar. Almost tastes like coke with booze.

Feel is medium thick. Has a little chew to it.

Meh. A beer to drink in a pinch. Not really worth a re-visit in the future either. Just very average and too much sweetness for a winter ale.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2013 00:23:12 | More by dheacck11
Photo of linnymtu


3.05/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A very unoffensive beer. The best attribute is its color, a nice rich brown. However, the taste is very average, no discernable flavors jump out. I would almost call it an Amber beer. The smell is non-existant. A easy drinking beer, but not for a beer enthusiast.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2013 03:09:24 | More by linnymtu
Photo of DaveBlack


3.31/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

A: Dark, mahogany colored beer. An aggressive pour gives about 1 finger's width of tan head. Short retention, very little lacing.

S: Molasses and nuts are the primary smells in the aroma, and there isn't much else going on. Smells deep and sweet, but not particularly strong or interesting.

T: Taste of brown sugar, roasty malts, there's a bit of a cherry taste. in the background. Some slight hoppiness at the end, but the overall effect is that the beer is unfinished. Makes me want to keep drinking so I don't lose the initial burst of flavor into nothingness.

M: Moderate in both body and carbonation.

O: Meh. Pretty unremarkable in every way. It's not bad, it's easy to drink, but it comes off as out of balance. It's not a bad beer, but it's not really worth drinking. A big letdown from Weyerbacher, who's beers are generally stellar.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2013 22:34:13 | More by DaveBlack
Photo of dirtylou


2.29/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

12oz single, new holland 2009 pint

A winter ale, an english brown, a beer. A rather lifeless, mostly clear cola-brown body - odorless, mostly flavorless. Some chocolate malt, a bitter dryness in the finish, really just nothing to say about this one. Weyerbacher tends to be all over the map - this is a low point.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 02:15:26 | More by dirtylou
Photo of riversider76

New York

3.44/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Pours a redish brown with a thin tan head. Abit of retention, and a nice lace. Aroma is of toasty, grainy caramel malts, and brown sugar. Body is light with some carbonation. Taste ia toasty with hints of fruity sugars, and bready malts. smooth finish. Not bad,but far from outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2013 20:32:35 | More by riversider76
Photo of keeganfrank


3.23/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark cherry-colored ale with a sudsy, beige head about one finger thick. Aromas of brown sugar, tart fruit and bread. Mild fruit and caramel flavor. The taste is somewhat bland and disappointing, given the decent aroma it has. Weyerbacher is one of my favorite brewers and offers some exceptional styles of beer...unfortunately, this isn't one of them.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2013 16:43:05 | More by keeganfrank
Photo of Cylinsier


3.4/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz.

Pours a deep brown with a tan film for a head.

Brown sugar, buttered toast, and hazelnut in the nose.

Flavor is a light mix of caramel, toffee, buttered toast and honey.

Medium body with stinging carbonation on the tip of the tongue and the roof of the mouth.

A fairly decent ale, a bit bland in the flavor but otherwise nothing to complain about. Easily drinkable but potentially unmemorable. Would have it again in the future depending on the alternatives.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2013 23:29:37 | More by Cylinsier
Photo of JohnFatAss

New Jersey

2.45/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Some of Weyerbacher beers are fantastic, So, I always get axcited when I get a chance to try something new from them.

Weyerbacher Winter Ale is dull , boring and lacks flavor.

I always like the art work on Weyerbacher labels. To me, the bottles, labels, and names of the beers are part of the fun of drinking craft beer, so this winter ale will get a half point from me just for the packaging.

The beer irself is a bit of a disapointment. I can hardly pick up any aroma. It has a bready malty flavor, and some spiciness from the hops but it is just not that good.
The mouthfeel is a little thin and watery that leaves behind a chalky after taste.

To my surprise, the beer actually improved as it warmed up, but not enough to chang my rating.

It is not terrible, just a disapointing effort from Weyerbacher.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2013 04:11:36 | More by JohnFatAss
Photo of wac9


3.95/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

my god what a great beer if you love english brown ale with some chcolate in it this beer for you smooth tasty wow the taste jumps out in the beer and its so good looks great in glass and love it what can i say its english a brown ale and has chcolate dont walk to the store run to it great beer

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2012 01:30:37 | More by wac9
Photo of Silverchels


4/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice winter brown ale, with a chocolatey taste. I poured it into a frosted mug, and saw it was a rich dark coppery color though it quickly disappeared. Smooth finish left me wanting more. Lower abv allows that, unlike its cousin the Merry Monk by Weyerbacher.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2012 20:00:11 | More by Silverchels
Photo of KTCamm

New Jersey

3.7/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ouncer into a pint glass.

Pours dark brown, some reddish tones, white ring of foam. More on edges than in middle. Light smell. Faint cherry tones. Taste is a lighter watery than malt, raspberry fruit beneath. Smooth and subtle. Clean finish. Different and interesting.

Read now that this is an English Brown, which explains a lot.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2012 12:12:06 | More by KTCamm
Photo of MacQ32

South Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Appears near black in my signature DFH glass, I can see the deep amber color at the bottom of the glass when I hold it tot he light, but quite dark in this girthier glass for sure. Nice finger of perfectly dense tan head, dissipates after 15 minutes leaving a thin (but not too thin) layer across the surface. Decent lacing hangs off around about half of the glass.

S - A decent amount of toasty/grainy caramel malts, brown sugar and some sweet chocolate. Maybe a little apple. Pleasant but faint.

T - Wow! Delicious smooth coffee/roasted caramel flavor. Some grainy bitterness up front transcends to coffee/sweet flavors and finishes with a mild dark fruit flavor.

M - Minimal carbonation, which is perfect for this brew. Very very smooth, medium bodied+, not chewy thick but its definitely got some body to it.

O - Not a flavor explosion but very surprising/nice flavor mixed with a wonderful mouthfeel. Really nice to drink, really smooth. Gone in 5 minutes (after letting it sit for 15-20). Definitely getting more of this, much better than I remember in years past. (New label = new deliciousness??)

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2012 23:15:19 | More by MacQ32
Photo of JWU


3.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into a curved pint glass

A- a nice deep, translucent brown with ruby highlights. One finger of light mocha head, nice lacing.

S- Pretty generic, but pleasant. Brown ale malts, a little caramel, and some english/earthy hops are in the background.

T- Some grany malts, a little caramel and brown sugar sweetness, and a pinch of bitterness. Ends with Weyerbacher's typical metallic/sour twang.

M- light to medium carbonation, lighter bodied than you would think by the look.

O- Another underwhelming offering from Weyerbacher. Nothing specifically bad (other than their typical yeast profile which I don't really care for), but I wouldn't seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2012 18:34:44 | More by JWU
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.9/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - very dark brown with a thin, off white head

S - grainy, sweet, faint caramel

T - caramel, apples, bitter, nutty, faint plush fruit

M - medium bodied, well carbonated

This is a pretty simple, typical English Brown Ale. The nose wasn't impressing but the flavor hits most of the right notes. Anyone who likes an English Brown Ale will probably enjoy this one.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2012 21:42:07 | More by tdm168
Photo of thlayli87

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a rich dark brown with ruby highlights. One finger of cream colored head that dissipated quickly. Very little, lacing.

S - Sweet and toasty malts with notes of chocolate and caramel. This smells absolutely delicious.

T - The taste doesn't disappoint at all. Toasted caramel and chocolate malt flavors mingle with brown sugar sweetness. Very mild hop presence toward the end that is almost obscured by the malt flavors. Some hints of spice as well, notably nutmeg.

M - Medium bodied with lively carbonation. Alcohol is well hidden.

O - This is the best winter/Christmas brew I've had so far this year. Very tasty and highly drinkable. I only got one bottle but now I'm wishing I'd gotten more.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2012 21:21:47 | More by thlayli87
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic.
5.6% ABV,

A - Dark chestnut brown colored and clear, this beer pours with a short-lived light khaki head that drops to a thin skim and ring of foam with minimal lacing on the pint.

S - Weyerbacher Winter Ale has a very gentle malt aroma that encourages exploration of it's toffee and caramel nuances. Soft wheat bread and undertones of earthy hops come from a swirl but remain somewhat partitioned. It's not your typical winter beer smell but it's got a nice brown ale nose.

T - Roasted malt introduces bittersweet chocolate notes and burnt toast with a pinch of caramel sweetness and dry, earthy finish of dust and cocoa. The flavor strays considerably from the aroma but it's not bad until the finish is capped off with a metallic tin foil taste.

M - This winter ale is medium light bodied and incredibly dry from roasted malt and earthy English hops. The metallic taste carries over into the feel with a bite to the finish but it's not quite as insulting in the beer's feel.

O - Weyerbacher's Winter Ale doesn't do much to suggest winter to me, or even offer a nudge towards the season with spice or alcohol warmth for that matter. It's certainly not an awful beer but the roasted malt flavor which comes out of nowhere adds a poor metallic flavor to it that strikes me particularly hard. An average brown ale, I could take it or leave it.

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2012 01:53:32 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of farrago

New Jersey

3.18/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Close to no head, just a think layer of light brownish tan across the surface, swiftly gone, virtually zero lacing as well. The liquid is murky enough to achieve opacity, otherwise some brightness to the reddish brown color, some lighter orange tones further out, only the merest trace of bubbles. The nose emphasizes soft sweetness in the form of caramel, molasses, brown sugar, roasted nuts and soda bread, some carob and cinnamon like spices too, no real fruit or citrus presence, you get more oats and general grains as it warms. In the mouth it’s full-bodied, somewhat bottom heavy, paucity of carbonation does not help this situation, just sort of lays there until it suddenly loses weight through the finish, ends short. More bitter dark chocolate and cocoa here, hints at a sort of burnt quality. There are softening vanilla, hazelnut, caramel, toffee, nutmeg, creamed coffee and some cola bean notes as well as that soft baked dessert goods quality. Given the general sweetness of the flavors curious how texturally dry it is. Nothing which meaningfully bespeaks the presence of hops. Flavorful, can’t say there’s anything wrong with it per se but you forget you’re even holding a half full glass, not a good sign.

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2012 00:57:24 | More by farrago
Photo of BuxMontBeerLover


3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased a 6pk at Wegmans in Warrington, PA

Poured and sampled from a DFH Pint glass

A - Pours a very dark, mostly opaque, dark drown color. A one finger head on the initial pour. It fades to a light skim. A small amount of lacing left.

S - A underwhelming aroma of some sweet malts and spices.

T - The taste is a mix of sweet malts along with cinnamon and nutmeg. A slight toffee-like taste as well. Slightly bitter. Very middle of the road with nothing that says "Wow". It's very easy to drink and you could easily down several of these in a sitting. The ABV isn't noticeable.

M - Moderate carbonation. Thinnish consistency.

O - A good tasting beer but again, nothing that is mind-blowing. It reminded me of a Samual Adams-type winter lager. That's not a bad thing since both are tasty but just middle of the road for me. A nice segway beer to give to your friends that are not normally craft beer drinkers since it's rather tame.


Serving type: bottle

12-10-2012 15:05:51 | More by BuxMontBeerLover
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Winter Ale from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
78 out of 100 based on 621 ratings.