Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

Full Sail Wassail - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

Not Rated.
Full Sail WassailFull Sail Wassail

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

476 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 476
Hads: 832
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 8.36%
Wants: 38
Gots: 50 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2001

"A deep mahogany color, Wassail is brewed with four different malts and a blend of Pacific Northwest hops, giving it a malty full body and a pleasantly hoppy finish that appeals to both hop and malt lovers alike. In other words, a Christmas miracle."

ABV 7% IBU 56
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Full Sail Wassail Alström Bros
Reviews: 476 | Hads: 832
Photo of mat5175
3.11/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is a gorgeous beer. Wonderful deep reddish brown, clear. Not too thick a head, dissipates rapidly, but leaves a decent lacing.

Unremarkable nose. Rich, a little sweet, a good deal of hops in the nose.

Fairly light and silky on the palate, with a more than fair amount of carbonation. Very lively, bubbly beer.

This is a very prototypical winter warmer. Mild sweet dark flavors on the front; finishes with a good deal of hop bitter. This has a high enough ABV to serve its purpose, but this is never in the forefront. Like others of the type this becomes more intense as it warms, but can be enjoyed almost to room temperature.

i have had several of these without tiring of it, but not interesting enough to keep going through a six pack over an evening. Good offering for the season. (793 characters)

Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.12/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- poured into a Duvel glass. Color is dark ruby/rich mahogany. Head is a light brown that dissipated rather quickly.

S- I love the esters in this, brown sugar, toffee, light bananas and toasted pine nuts.

T- well-balanced blend between the malts with a great hoppy finish. A little tart, that reminds me of bing cherries.

M- not the best winter warmer but not bad either. Leaves the mouth warm, which is probably due to higher alcohol content.

D- this beer is definitely drinkable, but it isn't outstanding. Honestly, I expected more from Full Sail's winter brew. Better than most, but could be better. (607 characters)

Photo of brewmudgeon
3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

latest review

the coffee quality does not seem so strong in subsequent tastings and the beer strikes me as far more drinkable than before. think i was starting to get a cold the first time. still, not as complex as i'd like and it lacks the full bodied, nourishing, spicy qualities i think it ought to possess. mouthfeel upgraded to 3, drinkability to 3.5.

3.5 opaque milk chocolate, nutty brown. thin cap, ring. occasional large chunkies.

3 smells like a porter w/ some crystal malt? fairly reserved aroma, or perhaps it's still too cold.

3 moderate to strong coffee bitterness. seems pretty astringent and alcoholic. not detecting a whole lot going on.

2.5 medium body, plenty carbonation. not enough body to support the bitterness and alcoholic presence.

2 maybe i drank it too cold. maybe my palate was off. maybe this 6-pack was mistreated. so far not my cup of coffee, er beer. next time i'll try sipping very slowly and letting it warm up more. (957 characters)

Photo of tchenery
3.15/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Beer has a nice slightly off-white lacing head to it. The body is a deep russet color with hints of red hues.

It smells of all dark malts. I'm picking up amber malts, crystal malts, caramel malts, and on the tail end there's a bit of cranberry or cherry or some other holiday fruit.

Very malt forward beer. Wow, this one is thick. It is almost chalky. It tastes much like it smells except maybe with a bit of chocolate in there. It doesn't seem like they use spices like other winter warmers do.

Chalkiness takes away from the mouthfeel and drinkability of this brew. (571 characters)

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.2/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A slightly creamy head tops a body of bright mahogany, light ruby brew. Little retention of head, a quick swirl brings it out again for a bit.
Soft hints of alcohol, nutmeg, earth-tones and malt in the nose. Caramel and nut bring up the rear. Sweetness becomes more noticeable after initial sip, so, too, the winter spices. A bit of nutmeg and ginger, but not much. Malt takes over the taste. Alcohol comes around in finish.
An average beer, would not be my choice for winter warmer (482 characters)

Photo of ppoitras
3.21/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle obtained via trade with skyhand. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" thick tan head above the clear brown brew. Head lasts well, with layers of thick coating lace. Aroma is worty and fruity. Taste also is reminiscent of wort, with spicing and balancing bitterness near the end. Mouthfeel is reasonably smooth, and drinkability is okay. Have to admit the name had me thinking cider, not winter warmer, but I adjusted. (474 characters)

Photo of hailyeast
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Poured into a tulip because I'm anticipating following this with a sour, maybe. Couldn't get a head noticed 1/2 way n poured hard to finish but just a lace of head.
S-malty and earthy , maybe vegetal herbal. Like a barley wine made with nugget or columbus or something
T-more of the same thick, sweet, malty, alcholic, herbal, vegetal all hop bitterness like no aroma hops were used.
O-not a bad beer, just not a memorable one, I like it but wouldn't want a 6er too many other good /better beers out there for me. Solid average beer. (536 characters)

Photo of harrymel
3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Best by 23FEB12

A: deep brown with cherry hues. finger of light tan head falls quickly to a sheet of the same. spotty lace.
S: smells of metal with some malts and some herbal hops. Pretty weak.
T: Dark cherries, sweet malts, some tannins, some hops. Interesting. Nice at warmer temps.
M: Medium with fine and prickly carb.
O: I'd drink it again, but I won't stock in the house again probably. (394 characters)

Photo of Bfarr
3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear, slightly red brown with medium fuzzy head with okay retention and lacing. Caramel aroma with a bit of roasted malts. Sweet and tangy citrusy hops abound with a little pepper and roasted malts in the background woth a hint of peat. Moderate-high hop lingering. Semi-dry with sharp carbonation.

There is a lot of flavor here but the blend of flavors isn't optimal. The slight peat flavor seems to clash a bit with citrus. Not a lot just enought to give me a second pondering thought to wondering just what that flavor was. All in all, this reminds me more of a cascadian IPA than a winter warmer due to the very prominent hops. (633 characters)

Photo of OakedCanuck
3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz poured into standard shaker.

This beer is very clear, reddish brown with a nice, off white head that leaves nice lacing. The nose is not prominent but I pick up on some darker fruits, spices and muted hops. I was a bit disappointed with the taste, because, it was just average. The flavors were not forward and kind of hidden behind the alcohol heat. I did taste some toffee, caramel, cherries, and bread. The mouthfeel was decent and a bit sticky. The drinkability was good but this beer did not make an impression. (523 characters)

Photo of Nerudamann
3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Look - dark brown in color until held closer to the light, which reveals a more deeper crimson. About a finger's worth of beige or khaki colored foam that lingers for a while. Good carbonation.

Smell - crisp, slightly hoppy-smelling brew with a fresh, fruity hint to it.

Taste - Fairly hoppy, but balanced out with the malts. So-so at the start, but an intriguing flavor hits the side of the tongue in the middle..can't really describe it unfortunately. Finish is bitter and hoppy. Texture is thicker and a little filmy.

Drinkability - Very interesting brew, not terribly complex, but complex enough. Might be worth a six-pack just to figure it out. (653 characters)

Photo of DiabolikDUB
3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On-Tap @ Bailey's Taproom poured into Shaker glass. Winter in July.

Pours a murky deep copper color with a finger of tan colored head that never fully dissolves and remains a heavy layer atop the glass through-out the session. The aroma is toasted malts, spices and some earthy hops. The flavor has similar notes with toasty malts and nuts, slight brown sugar and some other spices. Wassail has a creamy medium body. The hops are more present in the aroma than in the taste which actually makes sense, since this was a dry-hopped version of the Wassail. The flavor is nice but could use some more noticeable hoppiness. (619 characters)

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.29/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle stamped 02/28/14 69 at reefer temp into goblet.
Head virtually non-existant, off-white, completely diminishing
Lacing - virtually none.
Body reddish-brown, hazy (chill haze?)
Begins slightly bitter with something close to black cherry/date flavor and ends with the date predominating. No diacetyl, no hops, no alcohol after taste.
Medium to full body with a creamy texture.
Carbonation lively, quickly softening.

Overall, a winter warmer I can appreciate; not overspiced and not so sweet you have to chase it with insulin. Delightfully chewy. Drives, IMHO, Mad Elf back into the underbrush. (598 characters)

Photo of blitheringidiot
3.3/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured out a dark russet clear carbonationless appearance with a settled khaki spotty coating that leaves decent lace spots.

Nutty Earthy aroma. A malty mix of walnut and light berry.

First swigs: Balanced cherry soda meets pancake. Just a mix of fruity apple and pie crust blend. A bit mish-mashy to me. Clean red apple finish.

Feel is fine with a medium body and gentle carbonation. No clinging aftertastes.

Last swigs: Thanks to G.D. for the bottle. It's not really what I think of as a Winter Warmer. More of an Amber, to me.

Let every man take off his hat
And shout out to th'old apple tree
Old apple tree we wassail thee
And hoping thou will bear. (674 characters)

Photo of Gump
3.32/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

At first I noticed an earthy flowery, rose-type of aroma without the sweetness. After that came a stinky septic smell. I take a deep whiff and I'm reminded of an outdoor porta-jon that was recently disinfected. I guess it's a byproduct of the yeast during fermenting.

The pour looks good enough, so I take a sip.

The flavors are quite good and easily drinkable.
Malty, nutty, some bitterness at the tip of my tongue. (418 characters)

Photo of tburkhart
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Wasatch for this one.

Poured into a pint glass.

Pours a deep ruby/mahogony with little head that clings to the side of the glass.

Smells a bit roasty with a hint of spice.

Tastes of roasted malts and slight alcohol.

Fairly creamy feel.

Not what I expected for a Winter Warmer. (292 characters)

Photo of argock
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. Enjoy by 031311 on bottle neck. Single purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $1.70.

A: Dark brown with plum highlights and solid 1-2 finger beige head with good retention and nice lacing.

S: Dark fruits and woody, musty maltiness witha kiss of orange and grapefruit hoppiness.

T: Unfortunately the hoppiness is only a shadow of the nose, and the flavor is a bit too woody and cardboardy for my taste. There is a pepper type of spiciness in the middle, but mostly bland, blunt woodiness reminiscent of green, not-quite-conditioned homebrew is the dominant flavor. The sweetness is pretty muted with a little bit of brown ale sour.

M: Medium-bodied with active carbonation and a cardboard aftertaste without much sweetness.

D: I thought this brew would be right up my alley -- a winter warmer without spice -- but unfortunately the hops-malt mix in the brew doesn't hit it for me at all. (956 characters)

Photo of Mahlik
3.35/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A - As the description states, this beer pours a deep mahogany with a one-finger bubbly, khaki head. Head dissipates to leave a bubbly ring around the glass.

S - A nice holiday aroma. Very malty up front. Biscuity and sweet with some caramel and bread notes. Dark fruits, cranberries and spices really help bring out the holiday vibe. Grass and hay notes from the hops help balance it out.

T - A seemingly balanced combination of malts and hops. Toffee, biscuit and caramel blend with spices and hints of dark fruits. The grassy and piney hop profiles help balance everything out. There is a slight metallic flavor.

M - In terms of body, this beer is on the heavier side of medium. Moderate carbonation. Finishes with a bitterness that lingers a bit. Definitely not a sipper but still not something you are just going to down with ease.

O - Not bad. I had this beer a few weeks ago and thought it was a complete failure. I decided to give it another try. I'm glad I did. While I don't think this beer is great, I do think it's a decent winter ale to have when you want to grab a sixer of something. I don't see myself grabbing this beer a third time though. (1,201 characters)

Photo of sulldaddy
3.35/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I am reviewing a room temp bottle poured into a pint glass. The beer pours a clear mahogany with ruby highlights and a fluffy beige head of 2 cm foams up easily.
The aroma is sweet. There is caramel and toffee with some slight spiciness that I think is nutmeg. Also some citrus notes but not rindy, more fruity like an orange.
I take a sip and discover a finely carbonated beer with average body. The texture is a little watery.
Flavor starts of sweet caramel and toffee and rolls quickly to some bitey hops that carry some piney and rindy characteristics. The hops linger on my palate and dry out my mouth after each swallow.
The beer is easy to drink, but I was hoping for more complexity in the beer per winter warmer style. Seems to be more of a decent pale ale.
I wouldnt hunt it down to try it again. (813 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.36/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Acquired via trade from Wasatch, so a big "Thank you" goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color with a thin but dense off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is malty with notes of caramel, hops, cinnamon and a little bit of dark fruit.

T: The taste is likewise malty, but quite tart and bitter, with flavors of dark fruit, hops and a little bit of spice. It seems a lot like a Scottish Ale to me, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. The after-taste is bitter, but not-so-much from the hops.

M: Crisp with a little bit of smoothness, medium carbonation, medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish, which is surprising for a beer with very little sweetness to it.

D: Not all that tasty to me, goes down ok, good kick, decent representation of style with a few quirks to make it different, to be honest it’s a decent beer, but there are a lot of others that I would choose first even within the style. (1,016 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.37/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a dark, walnut-hued body with a thin, white head.

Smell: Meek, meager nose smelling only lightly of chocolate-covered nuts and sprucey hops.

Taste: Plenty nutty upfront with lesser tastes of roast and chocolate. Earthy blend of spicy, sprucey flavored hops. A deep bitterness lasts until the dry finish with a lingering roasted nut taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A middle-of-the-road winter release for me that, while not bad, certainly didn't do anything for me. Especially with so many other fine wintertime brews rolling around. (589 characters)

Photo of younger35
3.38/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed this from my local brew shop along with a couple other winter warmers. I’ve had this brew before but finally getting around to reviewing it tonight. Drank from my Bear Republic Red Rocket Ale pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a really dark brownish red with a small half finger head with a light sandy color. Leaves almost no cap and a very small collar. Not much lacing present.
Smell- Some roasted malts and burnt brown sugar is the vast majority of the nose on this one. Some dark fruits are also present (plums, cherries and a touch of raisin) but not in much strength.
Taste- Starts with a bit of a over-roasted malt and some alcohol drenched cherries. A tad bit of sweetness reminiscent of brown sugar is present to semi-balance the slight citrus bitterness. The dark fruit in the nose is kind of present but really only in the aftertaste. It’s rather enjoyable until the finish when it becomes a bit cloying.
Mouthfeel- Medium body with a lot of aggressive carbonation and a hint of alcohol warming.
Drinkability- For the most part (other than Vesuvius) I’m a Full Sail fan. The nose is a huge disappointment but the taste isn’t bad. It becomes a little much after a while though because it is fairly cloying. A bit more hop (or full fermentation) may reduce this (what do I know…?) and make it a bit more enjoyable. (1,333 characters)

Photo of silentjay
3.38/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours to a deep mahogany brown that is still translucent with a disappointing light tan head that quickly settles to a spotty film, yet sticks well to the glass.

pretty faint aroma of dark breads, nuts, and some herbal hops.

more flavorful than aromatic with plenty of sticky sweet caramelly malts and a considerable nuttiness. hops are a bit earthy and spicy but mostly herbal.

medium bodied and syrupy with way too much carbonation for my liking to complement the flavor profile.

drinks okay. overall, it brings to mind an english brown ale with a bit more spicy hops. not bad, but not great. (599 characters)

Photo of ColoradoBobs
3.4/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a sixer at Liquor Max in Loveland, CO, on March 25, 2006: the Christmas 2005 brew. On sale for $5.99 for the six-pack.

Pretty dark mahogany brew with a minimal head, that leaves surprisingly thick and sticky lacing. Smell of toasted malts, spices (nutmeg, ground pepper), and some piney metallic hops. Taste is far hoppier than I would have looked for in a winter warmer, but then this is a west coast brew, so what did expect? Actually reminded me a great deal of the Arrogant Bastard I had yesterday. Toasted malt notes are all but covered up by the hops. I don't think this is to style: the malt should be much further forward and the hops should be more restrained. It's okay for what it is, but my taste score is primarily a reflection of the fact that winter warmers are SUPPOSED to be malty sweet with low hops (See this style descriptor: http://beeradvocate.com/beer/style/47.) According to this definition, this beer is definitely not to style. Fortunately the taste mellows and the malt comes up a bit as the beer warms.

Good mouthfeel, and pretty drinkable. Calling this a winter warmer seems a misnomer. Tastes more like an American Strong Ale, though at 6.5%, it wouldn't fit that category either. (1,222 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
3.41/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle in to a pint glass. Big bubbles of a light brown which recedes at a good pace. Color is a walnut dark brown ending off in a redish hue in the bottom.

Malt nose, not any spices, some nut. Nothing really jumps out and the nose is quite small

Tastes like a regular bitter with no fruit, nothing spicey but highly tobacco in nature and flavor.

Not very watery beer with a decent body but easily drinkable. (424 characters)

Full Sail Wassail from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
86 out of 100 based on 476 ratings.