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Brooklyn Winter Ale - Brooklyn Brewery

Not Rated.
Brooklyn Winter AleBrooklyn Winter Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

963 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 963
Reviews: 463
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 13.33%
Wants: 18
Gots: 39 | 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: 963 | Reviews: 463 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Thorpe429


3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

A: Pours a dark amber with a tannish head.

S: Some sweetness and some caramel/toffee.

T: Much like the smell, but adds in some of the spices.

M: Medium bodied with decent carbonation.

D: Fairly drinkable, but something about it just doesn't fit. Overall, a pretty decent beer, though.

04-24-2009 02:42:40 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of RBorsato


3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

Nice clear copper color with a decent tan head, nice active carbonation, and nice sheets of lace. A slightly funky sweet malt aroma and flavor, nutty character, and caramel standing out. Flavors are very similar with sweet nutty character ruling with caramel malts. Medium-full bodied with a lightly sweet finish.

Something seemed a bit off here... Not one of Brooklyn's best efforts.

Per label: "Marris Otter Malts"

Per BB website:
Malts: Maris Otter, English Crystal Malts, Belgian Aromatic malt, American Roasted Malts, American Oats
Hops: Willamette
OG: 16.5P

Best Before: April '07 (notched)
Tasted: 05/02/07

($6.49 / 6-pack with $2 discount)

06-19-2007 00:55:39 | More by RBorsato
Photo of woodychandler


3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

I recently was back up to Highland Pizzeria, this time with my Uncle Steve, and this was part of a mixed sixer that I brought home. For those that may be wondering, a Place Review will be forthcoming once they complete their planned expansion, sometime in late-Spring/early-Summer.

From the bottle: "We brew Brooklyn Winter Ale from heirloom Maris Otter malts to create a beer with roots in blustery Scotland. Brooklyn Winter Ale is richly malty, aromatic, full-bodied and perfect with stews, roasts and holiday dishes."

Today is totally appropriate for this beer as a) we still have four days left of Winter and b) it has been flurrying for the last hour! Grr. Die, already, Old Man Winter!

Nothing like an aggro pour to develop a nice cascading action, leading up to two-plus fingers of dense, deep-tan head with good retention. Color was a deep-brown with garnet highlights among the NE-quality clarity. A second pour released some lees hiding at the bottom of the bottle and while I did not mind, it may be something for others to be mindful of. Best Before Date read "4123117080220" but it was indecipherable even to my cryptographic mind. Nose smelled medicinal, like a combination of molasses and anise. Mouthfeel was medium, approaching, but not achieving creaminess. The taste was primarily of molasses, but it was nowhere near as sharp as it was on the nose. Finish was semi-dry, as though the fermentable sugars had been mostly converted, but it was still too sweet for my taste. It kind of reminded me of the finish of a traditional English barleywine. Overall, not bad, but just not my cuppa joe.

03-16-2013 15:11:46 | More by woodychandler
Photo of UDbeernut

New York

3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: deep amber brown, slight off white head with little retention

S: carmel malt dominates the nose, hint of alchohol

T: malt and spice on the tongue. Slight hop bitterness and fruity ester from the yeast.

M&d: full bodied slight carbonation full slightly chewy mouth


03-03-2009 01:31:03 | More by UDbeernut
Photo of Greggy


3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

A- Pours a tan soapy foam head over a dark ruby body. The head recedes into nothing after a minute.

S- Biscuit notes with caramel. A touch of meatiness/hint of smoke.

T- Starts out very malty and floral. The finish is a touch smoky with the floral notes coming through in the end.

M- The carbonation feels a little aggressive for the style.

D- Overall, not a bad beer. It's nothing I would seek out but it could hit the spot on a chilly evening.

12-12-2011 04:34:04 | More by Greggy
Photo of WesWes

New York

3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

The beer pours a dark amber color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a dry caramel aroma that's pretty nice, but nothing spectacular. The taste is decent as well. It has a very dry crystal malt flavor with little hop character. The mouthfeel is decent as well. It is a medium/full bodied beer with good carbonation. This is an above average beer, but a lousy Scottish ale.

08-30-2009 00:20:07 | More by WesWes
Photo of joefuzz

New York

3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

Pours a very nice deep copper with a decent sized off white head

Smells of bready malts and a kind of english yeast

Tastes almost like a english bitter with a heavier malt profile

Mouthfeel and carbonation are amazing for a sessionbeer

Overall a great suprise for something that was found at 711

11-27-2012 05:48:04 | More by joefuzz
Photo of NCSUdo


3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

12 oz bottle

A: Pretty clear brown/reddish body, with some lighter amber hints along bottom of glass. Big white head on top, good lacing, pretty nice lace left behind. Pretty good looking beer.

S: Big toasted maltiness, toffee and some burntish caramel.

T: Toasted malt, some bitterness in the finish, indentifiable sweetness in beginning, a little sourness but nothing close to puckering. Beer loses some points here with me. Just doesn't seem to bring a whole lot to the table in the taste department.

M/D: Mouthfeel is a lot lighter than I expected, a litte watery. Suprising little carbonation under such an awesome head, drinkability is pretty good as this one goes down smooth.

11-05-2007 02:07:46 | More by NCSUdo
Photo of MDekker


3.53/5  rDev -1.9%

Pours out darker than I expected, amber in color with some head. No floaties. The aroma is mostly malty, with some hints of pine. Satisfying. It tastes of caramel, some slightly fruity hints, and finishes with some clean hop bitterness that lingers for quite a while. Pretty good. It's soft in the mouth, although a little watery. Went down relatively easy. Overall, nothing spectacular here, but far from offensive. I could see myself having more in the future.

04-12-2007 18:04:43 | More by MDekker
Photo of aepb1


3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

A- Translucent amber body with a foamy white head and decent lacing

S- Caramel malts and some fruits in there too just not real strong

T- Same as nose, caramel malts and moves into a fruity sweetness in the end

M- Medium body, good carbonation

D- Very easy to drink and revisit

01-19-2011 15:42:34 | More by aepb1
Photo of mdm46410


3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

On tap at Bone Dry and served in a shaker. This beer poured a copper brown hue with a lasting head of creamy, beige foam. Decent lacing. The aroma was made up of lightly sweet caramel, bread crust, and brown sugar. The flavor mirrored the aroma. Nice and malty, but not too robust. The mouthfeel was medium-bodied and had moderate carbonation. Not too shaby, but I wouldn't mind seeing this one beefed up a bit.

12-02-2008 03:53:32 | More by mdm46410
Photo of pinotboy007


3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

A - Clear goldish-copper with a modest but creamy head that settles without lace.

S - Very nice aromas of peat, malt caramel and raw honey.

T - Malt and caramel with a nice touch of honey and leather.

M - Creamy, not too dense and enough carbonation to keep it interesting.

D - Food friendly and more than drinkable.

10-19-2008 21:54:01 | More by pinotboy007
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

Appearance: Pours a fairly clear amber color with a tight pillow of a head that leaves some shards of lace

Smell: Buttery caramel

Taste: Starts out with a caramel flavor that develops as woody notes join in, mid-palate; after the swallow, the buttery diacetyl kicks in to join the caramel flavor as does a moderate balsa wood, earthy bitter character; slightly metallic on the finish

Mouthfeel: Just a tad thicker than medium bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: An English take on a Scottish Ale, me thinks; not one I would return to in a hurry

02-17-2007 20:18:46 | More by brentk56
Photo of alee42


3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

Dark brown, slight reddish hue, with a foamy off-white head. Caramel and hints of chestnut hit the nose first, followed by a faint spices like ginger. The flavor seems bold after the soft, delicate aroma: bready, sweet malts, warmly spiced. Even a brief suggestion of chocolate. Alcohol seems to slip in between all the flavors which kind of breaks the balance a little. Malts and hops are well blended though. Medium-full and slick, yet crisp.

Good winter seasonal beer, nothing too impressive but very drinkable.

11-23-2011 17:50:17 | More by alee42
Photo of peensteen

Ontario (Canada)

3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

Pours a deep copper colour, one finger of white head with some lace on the glass. Smells of malt, hops, caramel and a slight sweetness of toffee. Taste is malty, spicy, warm cinnamon notes, firm bitterness and a good hop profile. Quite full mouthfeel, slightly creamy with good carbonation. Drinks well, with so many scotch and winter beers available it would be hard to put this ahead of most of them, it is good and I would have it again, solid overall.

03-06-2011 19:36:10 | More by peensteen
Photo of Scotchboy


3.55/5  rDev -1.4%

An extra received from Aaron, poured into a Stella Artois glass. BB date on the 12oz bottle says April 2012.

A: Slightly hazy brown with hints of burnt copper...light head lacing fades fast.

S: Remarkably malty; toasted grains, bread, caramel, smoked malt, oak, peat, and smoky earthiness...not much hopping or spices, maybe some light grassy notes.

T: Follows the nose, very bready malt bill; toasted rye bread (sans the spiciness), caramel and lots of oaky notes, almost to the point of tasting like vanilla, with an underlying smoky earthiness. Almost non-existent bitterness.

MF: Creamy and medium bodied. Light carbonation.

O: A decent Scotch. I'd prefer more hops and spices and bitterness to level this one out, 12oz of this was almost too much.

01-17-2012 13:35:13 | More by Scotchboy
Photo of dacrza1

New Jersey

3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

Part of a Christmas gift basket from Bob--thanks! Reddish brown body that allows some light to pass... consistent effervescence... hints a t a malty character... three-finger head is brown and settles with arches in its lacing... malt and a bit of something skunky (!) after cleaning a basement yesterday, this beer seems to reflect that dampness... medium-bodied, throat immediate impact... a bit of fizz but not bubbly... a reasonable aftertaste, compact but true... malts are predominant, giving this winter warmer a hardy, strong base with some fruit esthers late--a pleasant pint... a solid offering from Brooklyn, malty but not overstated... the hops are conspicuously restrained, mellowing its flavor... I'd six-pack this at a later date...

01-18-2009 04:26:59 | More by dacrza1
Photo of Chiefy770


3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

Poured from a 12 fl. ounce bottle into a nonic pint glass. "Best by" date of March 2014.

Appearance: Dark amber body. Somewhat of a weak light brown head formed. Modest lacing throughout.

Smell: Sweet and buttery. Toasted grains. Pinch of alcoholic esters.

Taste: Hops strike first and back off quickly. Warm and toasty malts kick in and create a sweet taste, a bit like toffee.

Mouthfeel: May have been a bad bottle but this seem a bit flat. It was not horrible but just a hair more carbonation. They claim a full body on the label but this is nothing more than a meek medium-bodied brew, if that.

Overall: Not a bad beer but definitely did not blow me away. The flavors are pretty straightforward. Not the most complex beer but hey, they can't all be winners.

01-04-2014 00:56:34 | More by Chiefy770
Photo of Shagtastic


3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

I really enjoyed this beer. Its a great wintertime beer that would be awesome on a cold night. I was expecting a little heavier on the body but I was pleasantly surprised at how thin and easy to drink it was. This is a beer I'd come back to again in the right circumstances.

01-10-2012 18:35:48 | More by Shagtastic
Photo of jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

Pours a four-finger light brown head that fades slowly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Nice crystal clear amber color. Malty nose. Light-medium carbonation and light-medium bodied. Flavor is malty slight bitterness at finish. This is the '07 version and it lacks the spices but doesn't have the smoothness of a scotch ale. Best before Apr 2008, 12oz bottle $1.50 from Capitol Convenience Concord, NH.

10-30-2007 22:49:10 | More by jdhilt
Photo of TMoney2591


3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

Served in a Walter Payton shaker pint glass.

It's starting to feel a touch like Winter out there, so might as well embrace the season with the "appropriate" beer, eh? It pours a slightly hazy tawny-russet topped by a relatively short-lived finger of dusty tan-cream foam. The nose comprises caramel, mandarin orange syrup, light spruce, very light honey, and a particularly small twinge of Laffy Taffy-style strawberry hidden in the background. The taste brings in more of the same, with a touch of graham cracker to round things out. I may or may not detect a pinch or two of nutmeg and brown sugar as well. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a very lightly chewy feel. Overall, a pretty nice beer, nothing exceptional, but a nice Winter quaff, if you're in the market for such a thing.

11-30-2011 03:42:54 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of smcolw


3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

Pours dark amber (like maple syrup); clear. Solid head that eventually dissipates to a single layer of bubbles. No lace.

Strong vanilla aroma, masks all of the other smells. It appears to be a very malty offering.

Quite dry but there is a notable alcohol warmth. Very creamy with a low level of carbonation. Nice but minor hop at the swallow. Overall, this is a very full bodied malty ale with a lot of vanilla.

12-07-2008 21:21:29 | More by smcolw
Photo of williamherbert

New York

3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

Glassy and clear dark cherry red color. Half finger of bubbly head.

The aroma is German hop at first, which is kinda odd I think. Confectionary sugars and dark cherry balance out the almost pilsner-like aroma.

Taste is heavy brown sugar and cherry liqueur. Some heavy roasted flavors as well, reminsicent of a Scottish ale. The brown sugar and cherry dominate.

The feel is thick and syrupy. Smooth and buttery. It's a decent, sweet ale. I would like a tad of a burnt balance but I'll take this one.

01-25-2009 02:01:08 | More by williamherbert
Photo of BeefyMee


3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

A: Dark burnt orange color to the body. Head is ok. No lacing.

S: Huge chewy malts with a little smokiness.

T: Robust, earthy malts dominate. There's a an odd booziness without the alcoholic bite that hangs around through the finish and aftertaste.

M: Nothing to complain about.

D: A solid beer that's quite sessionable even at 6%.

I like the idea of a Scottish style winter ale. I wish they did a little more with it.

02-24-2011 00:30:11 | More by BeefyMee
Photo of jwinship83


3.58/5  rDev -0.6%

12oz bottle from the most recent year poured into a standard american pint glass.

A- this one pours out a rich brown colored body with an off white colored head. the head lasts for a while and leaves behind tiny rings of lacing.

S- theres plenty of caramel notes coming from my glass. some of its sweet, and some seems to smell burnt. small amounts of cherries and plums in here also. i think i smell some grassy hops at the end.

T- once again, plenty of caramel. sweet and burnt. a little bit of toffee in here also. the fruits i could smell are back in the taste. the hop finish is light and grassy with a bit of earthiness as well.

M- medium to full bodied. pretty smooth. well carbonated.

D- an interesting idea for a winter seasonal. not many breweries are doing a scotch ale for their winter beer. id probably come back to this one again next year.

05-17-2010 15:32:09 | More by jwinship83
Brooklyn Winter Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 963 ratings.