Bone Warmer Imperial Amber Ale - Grand Teton Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Bone Warmer Imperial Amber AleBone Warmer Imperial Amber Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

77 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 77
Reviews: 22
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 12.67%
Wants: 3
Gots: 9 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Grand Teton Brewing Co. visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bitterbill on 01-13-2007

Our Bone Warmer is brewed the same way, using only the first runnings from an extraordinarily thick, strong mash of Idaho 2-Row Metcalfe and Harrington barley malt, along with dark German Munich and caramel malts. We subtly spiced it with Idaho Chinook hops, fermented it at cool temperatures and cold-conditioned it for smoothness and drinkability.

The resulting ale is the color of roasting chestnuts. It is voluptuously malty and only slightly sweet- with a hint of toffee and a warming dry finish. It’s an ideal accompaniment to rich meaty stews, wild game, roasted fowl or root vegetables, and aged cheddars.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 77 | Reviews: 22
Reviews by ToddKehoe:
More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.97/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #81 (Oct 2013):

“Malt bomb” is what comes to mind and in a very complimentary way; this is the American Winter Warmer. With each sip, this beer becomes more drinkable, though we had to remind ourselves that it is a very sizable brew. Seek this beer out.

STYLE: Imperial Amber Ale
ABV: 8.2%

LOOK: Hazed ruddy amber, tight lacing

SMELL: Heavy toasted malt, bread crust, fresh-cut grass, spice, floral, estery, browned apples

TASTE: Rich, very malty, sweet, warming, full bodied, smooth, creamy, very toasty, ample hop bitterness, mild chicory, slight peppery alcohol; sweet malty, toasty finish

Photo of russpowell
3.81/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2006 vintage pours a hazed chestnut with one finger of tan head. Appears fairly viscous, has minimal head retention & lacing

S: Caramel & appleskins. I also get woody notes & a bit of vanilla once warm

T: Caramel, brown sugar & oaky dryness, fruittyness (plums & apples) up front. I get dried cherry, dark fruits, boozey warmth. toffee, leafy hops as this drys. Finishes dry with toffee, raspberry & a bit of leafy hops & a bit warming booze

MF: Medium bodied with low carbonation, much warming & dryness

Drinks a bit slow due to the dryness & complexity. This a good, not great example of the style

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.27/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25


2013 750 picked up over the weekend at the Boise COOP... Finally getting around to trying it tonight.. Pours with the same color clear dark cherry wood... the 1/2" off white head rises up and dies back just as quickly.

Nose is thick caramel and toffee... some subtle background apple/pear fruitiness and lost in waves of malt complexities is just a whaff of hoppiness.

Tons of different malt notes but never really sweet... just huge and malty.... needs more hop bitterness IMO... and hop flavor for that matter....

Body is just shy of full... and the heavier body is accentuated by a lighter than needed small bubble carbonation.

Overall... Grand Teton hit the nail on the head by creating something that will only be appreciated in the winter months.. preferably by a warm fireplace... but for my palate, it is an unbalanced overkill.


Photo of LiquidAmber
3.74/5  rDev +0.8%

Pours a dark mahogany brown with a fine one finger khaki head with great retention and lacing. Aroma of rich caramel malt, brown sugar, lightly nutty with hints of oxidation and tartness; aroma profile similar to a doppelbock. Flavor is similar with caramel malt, brown bread, light nuts, mild suggestions of dark dried fruit, developing winter spicing in the finish, which has a mild hop bitterness and more light winter spicing. Light to medium bodied. The flavor is somewhat lighter than would be expected from the aroma and ABV. The profile is closer to a winter warmer, although less intense flavors. The flavors and malt profile are nice and this would be quite good with a bit more intensity. Bought this in the summer, so it is not freshly bottled, but it seems to have held up well; some slight oxidation in the aroma, but not the taste.

Photo of metter98
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy brownish red in color. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that died down, leavin two crescent shaped semi collars around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of caramel and toasted malts are present in the nose.
T: The overall tasting is rather malty and also has flavors of caramel and toasted malts along with some malty sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is a nice amber ale if you like malty beers. Although it is very malty, it doesn't feel overly heavy on the palate to the point where it is difficult to drink.

Photo of mwilbur
3.76/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter. Bottled on 8/12/13.
A: Pours a murky brown with a hint of orange at the edges with backlighting. 1/4 inch light tan head quickly recedes.
S: Fresh melon, caramel malt, spicy yeast, dark dried fruit, and a hint of sugar. Very nice indeed!
T: Cola caramel malt, toasted grains, rustic bread, and a hint of fruit in the background.
M: Light-medium body. Smooth with a bit of spice.
D: An interesting brew, but not one that is firing on all cylinders. Appearance and aroma were very promising, but taste and mouthfeel didn't hold up.

Photo of dstc
4.17/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark ruby brown color with big tan head. Head falls slowly leaving minimal lace.

Smells sweet with a hint of alcohol coming through. Also has burnt aroma to it and strong malts in the nose.

Taste mimics aroma. Sweet malty taste with the alcohol coming through slightly and a slight bitter hop finish.

Thick and smooth in the mouth with low carbonation.

Very nice, I would definitely drink again if I could fine it.

Photo of rdickey
4.2/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Source: 750 ml ceramic corked swingtop bottle, with a wax-dipped top a la Maker's Mark. I don't know about you guys; I love the presentation, but I find these bottles hard as hell to open. Date on the bottle tag is November 16, 2007.

Appearance: Pours a very reddish amber into a tulip. Two-finger amber head; somewhat rocky but with mostly fine bubbles. Moderate retention with nice lacing.

Smell: Malt sweetness comes across big time for me; after the nose I sort of expect to be drinking a heavy Scottish beer.

Taste: Nice. Balanced, but the scales still weigh on the malty side. Not necessarily what I expected after the nose -- there's plenty of malt sweetness, most of it fruity. However, there's a balance that comes from a hop backbone that isn't particularly strong, but is reinforced by an oakiness that reminds me of an oak-aged Yeti.

Mouthfeel: Definitely warming; it's a good one for a February Friday. The BA characterization of this as an American strong ale is the right one; it's in the vein of an Arrogant Bastard.

Drinkability: You're not going to spend the evening throwing these back, because of the sweetness. Still, it's beer, so...

Photo of jwc215
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presented in a bottle with a really cool skeleton in flames with a waxed-over (cool-looking, but kind of annoying) flip-top lid.

Pours reddish brown with a very brief appearance of a tan head (though nice color saves it), but a few tan bubbles. (A fleeting head very temporarily appears with a gentle swirl.)

The smell is of sweet caramel and berry-like fruitiness. Strong alcohol predominates over a barnyard mustiness.

The taste is similar to a fine cognac or sherry. After the initial liquoure-like sweetness, there is a toffee/caramel maltiness. Remains solidly sweet throughout. Berry fruitiness and prunes add to the deep complexity. Alcohol present, but not as overwhelming as in the aroma. Toffeeish sweetness with a balancing fruitiness in the finish.

Full-bodied and surprisingly smooth, this is a tasty brew to have with gamey meat. Pairs well with dishes such as venison stew, but a treat on its own.

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for bringing it back - Wish it were available around here!

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.06/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a balloon glass.

Beer Review #500

Look: Deep rich mahogany. Ruby comes through in the light. A cream colored head recedes to a cirrus cloud film. Spots of lacing if any.

Aroma: Sweet maple syrup, malts, brown sugar.

Taste: An immediate oak-aged woody note, then a marshmallow sweetness that makes this very good. A spicy ending from Chinook hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied if not somewhat sticky.

Overall: Definitely more of an old ale than amber. It's a good sipper, and very tasty.

Photo of DogFood11
1.44/5  rDev -61.2%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Big bottle that is caged and waxed. Poured into a mini tulip it forms virtually zero head with an aggressive pour. The large loose bubbles that remain pop down to an outer ring. Coka cola type color a deep amber to brown.

Large amounts of dark fruits abound in the nose and translates to the taste as well. A jumbled up beer that is pretty much a mess in my book. An Ajax type medicinal flavor is deep in the background but enough to annoy. Prune juice is a standout and fairly dominant at times. Rotting grapes. Lingering aftertaste has a filmy layering mouth that also gets difficult to overlook.

Notes: Its been a while since a reputable craft brew has totally dissapointed but this is in the awful category. Pass it up.

Photo of mactrail
3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Rich amber brown in color with a modest head in the tall Saxo tulip. An unusual and not entirely agreeable oxidized and fruity aroma. Rather sweet and really malty. Very little bitterness, though there is some scratch in the back of the throat, like burnt raisin bread.

There is not much in the way of hops here, although it does have an interesting spicy flavor. This tastes very much like an Old Ale, with the buttery and oddly caramelized flavors. This doesn't quite seem to have the intensity of flavor for sipping, and it's too murky and strong for casually drinking. From the 750 ml bottle purchased at Bine & Vine in San Diego.

Photo of Wasatch
3.85/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes to Bitterbill and JohnGalt1 for this one.

750ml Waxed/SwingTop

Pours a amber color, nice carbonation, not much of a head, not much lacing afterwards. The nose is of malts, prunes, apricots, figs, and some caramel. The taste is sweet/tangy malts, slight smoke/oak, and prunes. Medium body. Drinkable, I like it, it is not a bad brew at all, glad I have another bottle.

Photo of BigJTrucker
4.52/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up this beer in-person from Wasatch right after i moved to utah. Says 2006 Cellar Reserve. Pours a dark brown color almost matching the color of the bottle it came in. No head at all, but i bet it would develop a bit more carbonation with extended aging. Very nice malty aroma, i detect a hint of pear type sweetness. Tastes very malty, i'm not detecting any hop bitterness to speak of. also has a very "oakey" flavor, as if it was barrel aged. Mouthfeel is very smooth, full in body, but not to the point of being thick. VERY highly reccomended.

Photo of TheBullsHorn
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured out of the bottle, a deep reddish amber hue with a fleeting head. On the nose, the beer gave of notes of, caramel, toffee, and light pine, with slight undertones of cooked dark fruit, particularly plum or raisin. Caramel sweetness initiates the palate, followed by maltier notes with again hints of fruit. Finishes dry with honey lingering on the palate. This ale has a velvety mouthfeel with light carbonation. Alcohol is present, but not overpowering. The combination of caramel/ fruitier flavors in the beginning paired with drier honey-like tones at the finish of the palate, keep begging the drinker to take another sip. A beautifully made Imperial Amber ale.

Photo of beergoot
3.33/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Label info: Bottled on 08/12/13

Deep copper colored body with a thick, foamy, sticky head. Rather faint aroma, but what you catch comes across like lightly toasted grain and cereal; slight nuttiness. Light caramel and brown sugar flavor with a terse bitterness at the finish. Medium-light body; crisp.

A rather lightweight imperial ale, in my opinion. The taste is okay yet seems a bit thin; same with the body; and the aroma is surprisingly wispy, too. Still, there is gentle, grainy warmth nearly hidden beneath rather weak, up-front characteristics. Not bad overall, but not as boldly complex and deep and one might expect from an imperial ale.

Photo of Patrick999
3.78/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out of that big wax-coated swing-top bottle. Pain in the ass to open, but it sure looks nice. So, the dark brown liquid goes into my oversized wine glass, with a short but sticky head. Good sign, the last Grand Teton brew I had was poorly carbonated. This does not seem to be the case here, thankfully.

S - Don't know what's wrong with me, but I smelled more upon opening the bottle than now, when it has warmed up a bit. I do get a plummy aroma, some vinous notes, a bit of rum.

T - My first impression is that it tastes like a less oak-y, less smoky DFH Immort Ale. Big malts front and center, finishes with a kiss of hop. With the aftertaste comes a roasty, bitter note I didn't really care for, kind of a blackened hop if that makes any sense. After a little while, it gives way to a more pleasant chocolate sensation/taste.

F - Good feel to it. Full bodied strong ale that doesn't feel all that heavy.

D - Nice beer. It's going to be tough to finish this bottle, though. I hope it keeps fairly well for tomorrow.

Photo of Bitterbill
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 33.8 oz caged and waxed bottle a deep amber with a smallish head of foam that quickly shrank to some swirls on the surface and has almost no lacing.

The smell is quite fruity(citrus) with notes of sweet really has an unusual nose that I haven't experienced before.

The taste has a good malt bite, that is semi sweet, along with some roastiness and as I swish the ale in my mouth, I get some real tartness that reminds me of sour cherries. I'm trying to get the "feel" of this Strong Ale but it's kind of stumping me because I don't think I've ever tasted anything like this before. And the highish abv started warming me from the very first sip so I wouldn't recommend gulping this one down. ;^)

A few more sips in and the tart fruitiness dies down some giving me more of that semi sweet malt, which I find quite tasty, and some alcohol that I don't find so appealing. I think I'll buy a few bottles and let them sit for a while.

Bottom line: This one isn't on their website yet and the attached info card says it's a 2006 Bottle Conditioned Ale so I'm guessing some aging would really work for this brew. As is,
it's strange and interesting enough for me to say...try it if you see it.

Photo of vette2006c5r
2.97/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bone warmer pours a brownish color with a small lacing head. There is a light watery, and soury malt aroma. The taste is watery, sour and rather harsh. Watery and light body, weak flavors. Overall its a weak beer, flavors are noticeable, but barley, but even saying that it is by no means bad.

Photo of dnichols
4.17/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured a 33.8 oz waxed and flip topped bottle into a stemless wine glass.

A: It poured a mahogany body that had almost no head (only a few scattered bubbles) and no lacing.

S: It had an aroma profile that led with caramel, apricots, plums, figs and spices (nutmeg and all spice). The aromas were mellow and well balanced.

T: It began and ended with a consistent flavor that was exceptionally well balanced. It was like drinking a thick sweet iced tea. The sweet malts were accented with fruity flavors and spices.

M: It was medium-bodied with no carbonation. This "cellered" brew was well balanced, finished warm and clean and had nearly no aftertaste.

D: It was a great winter warmer with rich, smooth and balanced flavor. It was a bit stiff for a session beer but the alcohol was well hidden and the flavors were a welcome change of pace.

Photo of t0rin0
3.89/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This came from a large swingtop bottle. It poured a murky brown color. There were hints of red showing through. Very little head and no retention or lacing. The color was nice but the rest wasn't.

The smell was sweet and fruity. There was plenty of malt smell that hinted at an amber. But then there was the fruit and the hop smells that made it clear that this isn't actually an amber at all. The description provided here of Strong Ale makes more sense.

The flavor was pretty smooth and possibly aged. There was some developing malt flavors which is what inspired that last sentence. I didn't know what to make of the flavor as its kind of strange. Basically its got a mild to moderate hop bite, a small amount of hop flavor, and plenty of sweetness coming from malts and maybe even a little from the hops. I really liked this beer but I am totally confused by it.

The body was fairly heavy but I think that is because of all the particulate matter in there. I don't often advocate filtering but maybe a light filtration would do this beer some good.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.87/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a still, mahogany brown body.

Smell: Spiced caramel aroma with fruity accents of apricots and figs. Yes, there's even some salted nuts in there as well.

Taste: Sugary sweet cookie-like malts with a hit of juicy fig fruitiness and a handful of nuts. Light, spicy bitterness. A touch of booze on the fruity, sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Near still.

Drinkability: It's quite the fine, tasty beer but for the lack of carbonation.

Bone Warmer Imperial Amber Ale from Grand Teton Brewing Co.
84 out of 100 based on 77 ratings.