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Brooklyn Winter Ale - Brooklyn Brewery

Not Rated.
Brooklyn Winter AleBrooklyn Winter Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

971 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 971
Reviews: 463
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 13.33%
Wants: 20
Gots: 41 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brooklyn completely changed the recipe in 2006. It’s now a Scottish-style ale. Brewmaster Garrett Oliver explained to us that: “There are no spices at all. Good British floor malts and hops along with our yeast strain account for all the flavors. It has a Scottish-style cooler fermentation, which pushes malt to the forefront rather than fruitiness.” It was brewed with Scottish Floor-malted Maris Otter, English crystal malts, Belgian Aromatic malt, American roasted malts, American oats and hopped with Willamette.

(Beer added by: Todd on 12-02-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 971 | Reviews: 463 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 1Sundown2C
3/5  rDev -16.7%

1Sundown2C, May 29, 2014
Photo of VictorWisc
3.1/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

First striking thing is Brooklyn's insistence on printing date codes in dark ink on amber bottles with dark contents. Zero visibility under fluorescent lights in the store, and that's with plentiful lighting at a supermarket, let alone in the darkness of some beer cave. I could barely discern the digits when I got home, but ended up not bothering with it out of frustration. Suffice it to say, it was about to be a total shelf turn on a Waldbaum's shelf--the only one that was moderately drinkable.

Liquid is discernably brown, semi-translucent, with very little light head and no lacing. Hard to see the carbonation. Didn't taste a whole lot of it either.

Nose is clean. Too clean. A whiff of straw is about all I noticed--a feint fungal, yeasty smell that's more at home with barleywines and porters.

The taste was very much the same. Nothing striking. A bit of sweetness, slight metallic aftertaste. Tasted more like a mix of a thin porter with Oktoberfest than a winter ale. Barely any hint of spicing or hops. Just not a good beer.

Medium to heavy body, but not really strong alcohol. If they aimed this to be mediocre at everything, they certainly succeeded.

I initially thought this was just an old bottle, poorly stored. But, judging from other reviews, the reaction doesn't appear to be atypical. Still the best choice of the lot at a Queens Waldbaum's but I'd have to be really desperate to buy it again.

Although Brooklyn has had some hits, most of their product is mired in mediocrity. Frankly, I've never been able to understand the following. I could have picked up some rare bottles at what approached $30 for a 750cc, but, with their history in mind, it just didn't sound like a good idea. A few more beers like this one, and I'll be done with them for good.

VictorWisc, May 28, 2014
Photo of CAD22
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

CAD22, May 19, 2014
Photo of MattXT
3/5  rDev -16.7%

MattXT, May 18, 2014
Photo of hopsolutely
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

hopsolutely, May 17, 2014
Photo of Gator_Nation
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%

Gator_Nation, May 12, 2014
Photo of HuntDaddy540
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

HuntDaddy540, May 08, 2014
Photo of Whsrickqb12
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

Whsrickqb12, May 04, 2014
Photo of LXIXME
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

LXIXME, May 02, 2014
Photo of wisegreensoul
3.4/5  rDev -5.6%

wisegreensoul, May 01, 2014
Photo of avas
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%

avas, Apr 30, 2014
Photo of DmanGTR
3.13/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Review from notes

Brown, but with deep ruby/garnet hues when held up to the light. Cream colored head that retains decently. Deep caramel, hint of raisins. Touch of cocoa. Bitterness in the finish, but really no hop flavors at all. Mineral flavor. Smooth and prickly.

DmanGTR, Apr 29, 2014
Photo of Mini4x
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

Mini4x, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of SkinniePost
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

SkinniePost, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of Hairrrrrrrr
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

Hairrrrrrrr, Apr 15, 2014
Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best before 3/2014. Pours fairly crystal clear ruby red color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with some moderate streaming carbonation. Aromas of caramel, toast, biscuit, raisin, plum, apple, molasses, brown sugar, light roast, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/bready malt and fruity yeast ester notes; with solid strength. Taste of caramel, toast, biscuit, raisin, plum, apple, molasses, brown sugar, light roast, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Minimal bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, toast, biscuit, raisin, plum, apple, molasses, brown sugar, light roast, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice robustness and complexity of dark/bready malt and fruity yeast ester flavors; with a nice malt/yeast balance and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, moderately creamy, and lightly slick/bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice Scottish ale. Good balance and robustness of dark/bready malt and fruity yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

superspak, Apr 11, 2014
Photo of krampert11
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

krampert11, Apr 10, 2014
Photo of spazx
5/5  rDev +38.9%

spazx, Apr 09, 2014
Photo of tmaury
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

tmaury, Apr 03, 2014
Photo of devilfluff
3/5  rDev -16.7%

devilfluff, Apr 03, 2014
Photo of ShepardCommander
4/5  rDev +11.1%

ShepardCommander, Mar 30, 2014
Photo of Bdel34
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

Bdel34, Mar 29, 2014
Photo of carolinared
2/5  rDev -44.4%

carolinared, Mar 29, 2014
Photo of StuyBeerGuy
3.76/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I bought this winter season beer on sale because the store must have found a few crates in a corner during spring cleaning. Initially, I was hesitant that they must have been on sale because brew aficionados would not purchase them otherwise, fortunately, the taste proved I just happened to have found a good deal.

The beer pours thick and has a slight white head. While I enjoyed the burnt toffee smell my nose could just barely discern. The mouthfeel feel is front heavy and short with powerful malt flavors reminiscent of a light Scottish ale. The burnt toffee notes linger on the palate pleasantly.

StuyBeerGuy, Mar 28, 2014
Photo of Mtn
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

Mtn, Mar 28, 2014
Brooklyn Winter Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 971 ratings.