Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

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

Not Rated.
Full Sail WassailFull Sail Wassail

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

478 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 478
Hads: 842
Avg: 3.83
pDev: 15.93%
Wants: 42
Gots: 52 | 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: 478 | Hads: 842
Photo of Zraly
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A beautiful ruby brown. A wonderful lacing follows suit. Smells of heady hops and the crisp, NW wind in late fall.

Full malt flavor that finishes with dry, but smooth, bitter hops. Notes of berries, caramel, a touch of coffee, alcohol, and a bit of spice. Hops are citrusy and carry a slight sting in the mouthfeel...but rounds out nicely. Warming all the way down into the belly.

What a great beer to have with game and root veggies. Might even be nice to go with a spicy, homemade pumpkin pie. Bonus.

 508 characters

Photo of rkhaze
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish-amber with a small but dense head that leaves good lace. Aroma of sweet malt, candied red fruits, mild hop spiciness and a bit of yeast. A smidge Belgian-like in a way.
Flavors of rich roasted malt, berries, nuts and a hint of licorice. A hoppy bitterness that lingers on the tongue. A lot of good components but they don't seem to all quite come together.
Medium bodied and good drinkability.
I don't know if they change the recipe yearly, but this was enjoyed more than in past years.

 505 characters

Photo of Mustard
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz. brown bottle; "enjoy by" date -- in this case 011604 -- printed dot-matrix style on the label's bottom, left edge; purchased as a "busted" single from Trader Joe's for $1.00.

Appearance: Pours a dark, clear, ruby-brown; sizeable, batter-like, beige-hued head; fine, understated lacing; head hangs around for about a minute or so.

Aroma: Sweet and spicy and nicely so.

Taste: Lightly sweet upfront with firm notes of toffee, brown sugar and molasses coursing throughout; beautifully spicy; secondary flavors include those of bubble gum, nutmeg and a host of other things.

Notes: Wow, pretty interesting stuff; will definitely seek this out in the future.

 685 characters

Photo of Rumrunner
4.32/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle. Enjoy by date is 11/04.

I believe this is the 2003 version. The sticker shows a winter scene with a snow covered tree on the right and the Full Sail red logo to the left. The neck has a 'happy holidays' greeting and a 'Cheers!' in white lettering. Cheers to Full Sail as well for this wintery ale.

A deep dark reddish mahogany color. A burnt quality to the color as well. A small to medium off white head. Not much lacing from this one. Scents are bold sweet malt and earthy spices. Some cinnamon and a hint of clove. There is some softening grain and oats. A slight bite of alcohol and fruits with a brown sugar quality. Very enjoyable.

Flavors are many and complex. The malts are sweet. Caramel and molassas. Wonderful earthy spices with a pine crispness. Cinnamon and a burnt spicey flavor. A dash of pepper as well. This ale has a wood flavor quality. Hard to follow that one but it is enjoyable. Some coffee grounds and a good bite of hop bitterness. A finish of oats, brown bread and dark fruits with brown sugar and even dates. The flavors represent the season exceptionally well. Flavors evolve as ale warms.

The mouthfeel is bold. It is very present. It has a bit of an alcohol bite and some slickness. The drinkability falls in the sipping category for me personally. It goes down very easily but I will still sip. All I need now is for it to snow in So.Cal. and a fire place.

 1,414 characters

Photo of BeerResearcher
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle. No freshness date.
Love the name 'Wassail'. Dark mahogany with a very sturdy beige head and loads of sticky lace. A nice fruity aroma mixes well with sweet malt and floral hops. The sweet and smoky heavy malt blends nicely with the complex (berries, citrus and lightly metallic) hop bite. This is a strong and hearty winter offering. I hope to find some more this coming winter. Thanks Genaro!

 412 characters

Photo of beerguy101
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2002 version - Deep red color, medium foamy head. Malty and smooth. Spice with nutmeg and ??. Flavor is complex. A little taste of raisins and figs. Malty and not very hoppy. Lots of flavor, subtle and diverse. Nice beer. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and a little dry. Aftertaste is malty and a little bitter.

2000 version-Deep Red color, medium head. Roasted malts, full flavor, aggressively hopped. Robust full mouthfeel. Very malty. Finish is crisp. Aftertaste is malty and somewhat bitter.

 513 characters

Photo of jcalabre
2.67/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I originally sampled this beer on 4 December 2002. I am writing this review from my notes.
This brew has a nice malty nose. What really ruined it for me was the astringent aftertaste. I may try it again next year when it's out, but this was a big disappointment. You win some, you lose some.

 292 characters

Photo of Reidrover
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ok i found this bottle of wassail in the back of my garage fridge today..had been there since January I guess...says best by 02/14/03..so only 4 and ahalf months over !!
The beer pours a nice dark garnet almost brown witha lovelly thick inch high creamy off white head..that stayed quite some time
Nice aroma..chocolaty and spicy tones..though well done.
I dunno but this seems to taste better than when I had the rest of the six pack..its flavourful yet smoother and less aggresivesweet malts followed by a creamy chocolaty taste followed by a nice "zap" of hops at the end ..very nice.
Nice and smooth and creamy on the palate.
Pretty drinkable even for a hot sweaty night.

 680 characters

Photo of ZAP
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another re-rate..I ws new at this when I rated a lot of these winter beers and have since retasted and lowered their scores slightly..

-Beautiful flowery hop flavor nestled into a fine malt base. Sweet malt up front with perfect hop balance...really nice flavor...more hops evident deeper into the beer..mahogany reddish in appearance...this is a splendid beer...

 368 characters

Photo of Morris729
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish brown color with a foamy light tan colored head that fades into a bubbly lace. Nose is fresh cedar and pine with notes of floral hops, citrus, and spice. Medium in body with a bit of a slick mouthfeel from the hop oils. Taste is sweet malt and dark fruit at first followed by a touch of chocolate and some earthy herbal flavors. Bitter hop resins are present towards the finish and remain in a lingering aftertaste. A nice winter warmer.

 458 characters

Photo of usualpulp
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a deep brown color with a thin white head. There are many smells to this beer, most notable are hop and floral. Based on the smells of the beer I was expecting a strong hoppy beer, somewhat similar to the sierra nevada celebration ale, but this beer was surprisingly subtle. It is hoppy without being overwhelming. I was expecting more malt flavors, but they were'nt missed. Once the beer warms some, a slight cranberry flavor arises, and the hops become more present. This gives the beer a very nice character. Overall this is a very good winter brew, very drinkable with decent complexity. definately something i could drink often. I almost wish it wasnt a seasonal brew, because I would enjoy this beer any time of the year.

 743 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First off, I found that this beer only really reveals itself as it warms and I'd suggest that you enjoy it starting at @ 50F. Additionally, as it warms the carbonation subsides a bit allowing it to become more creamy in the mouth; and rounding it quite a bit.
The body is a hazy mahogany with hard to find orange and ruby highlights. A short and very creamy light tan head comes up during the pour, but it drops off almost as quickly. It does, however, maintain a nice creamy collar, and leaves some spotty lace. The nose is subtle but enticing. It offers some light-toffee-ish maltiness, some gentle fruitiness, a touch of almost indistinguishable spice (nutmeg, all-spice?, light cinnamon?, coriander?) and some mild floral hops. The body is medium/light with an exceptionally fine-bubbled, mild carbonation that's creamy and smooth in the mouth. The flavor starts with some soft berry-like fruitiness that develops into a light candyish note before revealing its caramelish malt character as it crosses the palate. It finishes with a flair of spice that dries more than the underlying bitterness. Generic spice and candyish sweetness linger in the mouth and throat along with some piney hop character. Definitely and interesting brew if given the chance! Worth trying.

 1,272 characters

Photo of DerKaiser
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beers like Wassail and also Widmer's Winternacht make me wish that holiday beers were brewed year-round. I guess I'll just have to stock up. Wassail pours a dark garnet color with a pungent malty, hoppy aroma.

This ale is very full-bodied and well hopped, with nice chewy toasted malt flavors. It's also quite spicy as well, with an oily texture and a dry, brandy-like finish. The 6.5% abv warms the face and nose nicely. I initially made the mistake of drinking this beer too cold. The flavors really come alive when this brew is drank just below cellar temperature.

Overall, this is a really nice winter sipping brew to be drank on cold nights next to warm fires. I recommend it.

 687 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.47/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fine, sturdy, off-white head, dark brown color. Sweet aroma, but nothing too distinctive coming through. Faint hints of toffee, nuts, spices. Mild hoppiness, medium carbonation. Sweet maltiness. Very mild, very mellow, but to a fault. I like my winter ales with more of a kick, and this slides down too smooth for my tastes. Feels as if they were shooting for something like Anchor's Our Special Ale, but something held them back.

 430 characters

Photo of aracauna
3.08/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Nice color, deep, deep red-brown. The head is average size and dry and sandy looking. The aroma is warm malt and is a bit spicy. The flavor is less malty than I would have thought with the appearance. A bit sour in the finish. Coriander? The mouthfeel is a bit fuzzy.

 267 characters

Photo of yen157
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear and garnet in color with a puffy tan head that left lace on the glass that sparkled as the level of the liquid went down. Crisp fruity, floral hop aroma with a tiny bit of toastiness thrown in.It could have been just another tasty beer, but there was a slight sourness that pushed the brew from good to good and interesting. Hop flavor and bitterness are a major part of the beer, and both manage to be strong but not dominant and overpowering. Caramel, alcohol, and big toasted grain flavor with only a trace of burnt grain characteristics fill the mouth after the hops leave the palate. Fairly malty without being overly sweet, this beer was very well balanced.

My first Full Sail beer and if I can help it, it won’t be my last. Thanks to TXHops for the brew.

 771 characters

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For those that don’t know Wassailing, is attributable more to Cider in England, than Ale - but hey, why ruin a bloody good drinking celebration.
In the west of Britain the good health of the apple trees was toasted on Twelfth Night. The luck of next year's crop of cider apples was wished. Bread soaked in cider was put into the branches of trees to keep evil spirits away. Ritual songs were sung. i.e. Wassailing. This is also done on 17th January: the Old Twelfth Night. Hot cakes were a popular accompaniment. Cider was often splashed on the apple trees while men fired their guns at the tree and banged on pots and pans.

Here we come a-wassailing
Among the leaves so green,
Here we come a wand'ring,
So fair to be seen.

Erm, well I picked this 12 fl.oz. Bottle for just a Dollar. Pours a deep reddish-brown color, held to the light it has mahogany characteristic and a deep ruby red hue. Head is a slightly off-white color, a complex lace is spattered on the glass sides. No Cider here – this is definitely Ale. Pours with a medium carbonation, and a reasonable head, that settles to a ¼” brown collar throughout the duration. Nose is strong, of dark roasted biscuit malt, digestive oats, burnt barley and some strong olde worlde spices, including a strong cinnamon odor. It also has a piney coniferous Christmas Tree smell in the background.
Introduction is immediate, powerful roast malt leads to a strong mouthfeel, and a deeply robust body that carries this beer throughout. Middle is of spicy hops, and a bitterness that is unrepentant in its sole mission to devour the sweeter malt characteristics of this beer. The end is dry and quite acidicly sour at times; the finish almost reminds me of a sour Belgium brown ale.
I like this beer and I find it very drinkable - but why it is called Wassail - I have no idea at all.

A totally unexpected pick-up for a $1 = well worth it.
I will investigate other Full Sail beers from hereon in.

 1,963 characters

Photo of Pegasus
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Sparkling clear mahogany in color, roils in the glass when poured for a spectacular visual experience. After the beer settles, the tan head is still at least one half inch tall with lots of sticky lace.

Aroma: Rich aroma of toasted malt with a strong juniper note from the hops and winter spices, probably cinnamon and nutmeg.

Taste: Taste begins with dark, toasty malts, dark fruit, and a coffee and dark chocolate bitterness. Toward the middle of the taste, mild grapefruit-bitter hops appear, although less than the aroma led me to expect. The relatively subdued hops nonetheless lingered well past the end of the taste. Fairly pronounced alcohol flavor is notable in the taste of this strong and warming beer. It is better consumed at cellar than refrigerator temperatures.

Mouth feel: Soft, with a quite full body, slight tingle of carbonation at the tip of the tongue.

Drinkability/notes: An absolutely superb Christmas ale, well worth finding.

Presentation: Packaged in a twelve-ounce brown glass bottle with a twist-off crown, served in a standard Pilsener glass.

 1,091 characters

Photo of hyuga
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2002 release. Very nice looking brew. A dark, dark red body, almost brown, very much like the color of a barleywine. The head is light tan (also like barleywine) and retains exceptionally. Aroma is that of pine and Christmas tree-like hops, very nice touch, I was waiting for a Christmas beer that was hopped like this. Combined with that is a toasted malt, making a very unique aroma. Just a touch of fruitiness is in there as well. As for the flavors, wow, this is very unique as well. The hops are definitely American-style, while the malt is very English. Hops are more spicy here, with the Christmas tree/pine character being more of an undertone. A bit of citrus is noticeable as well. The malt is toasted, sweet, and bread-like. In addition to all of that, I'm getting some dried fig. Excellent beer, very drinkable. Definitely much more than I was expecting from it. I'll definitely have this again, and again, and again...

 931 characters

Photo of PhantomVodoo
4.18/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First, thanks to Bighuge for enabling me to sample this beer! It pours a dark reddish brown with a light tan head. Roasted malt is what I mostly detect in the aroma. Roasted malt and spices dominate the flavor up front. The beer is well balanced with hops and finishes neutral to slightly bitter. Very drinkable with a very good flavor, although I might prefer it to be just a bit bolder. Great Winter Ale!

 406 characters

Photo of DrewS
4.4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I must say, this is one of the better winter seasonals I've tried thus far. This beer pours out dark brown with a reddish tint. It has a decent off white head that falls to a thin layer on top. The balance can be detected right off the bat on the nose with both malt and hops competing for attention. Malt speaks up first on the tongue while the hops get in the last word and speak bitterly into the long finish. A good balance of sweet malt with a touch of molassas and hops with a piney earthiness make this beer a delight to drink. Throw in a touch of warming alcohol and you have yourself a hearty brew that chases away the winter blues. Thanks to dolem98 for enabling me to enjoy this great west coast treat.

 713 characters

Photo of ADR
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2002 edition...

Dark ruby-brown appearance...nicely mannered head at 1/4 inch after settling. Malty aroma, a sense of brown sugar. Nice body, satisfying caramel and spiced taffy quality, just a bit of citrus mid-mouth. Generous, but not overbearing hops at the finish with a smooth swallow. Very pleasant, one of the non-agressive Old Ales. Nice middle-of-the-road Winter brew to have in the rotation "arsenal", sort of "session" in flavor profile.

 456 characters

Photo of proc
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very enjoyable! Initial aroma is of fruit. The first taste is very complex and gets better as you drink it and as it warms up some. It warms you up too. Excellent hop/malt balance.

 180 characters

Photo of jreitman
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark reddish brown and nearly opaque in color. Very little white head ringed the glass. Sweet grain and citrus smells were the most evident with a slight spicy undertone. Mouthfeel is very creamy and adds a lot to the beer. Caramel, fruit and a hint of chocolate compromise a majority of the malt flavors. As the beer works itself to the back of the mouth, the bitterness really kicks in and rounds out the flavor profile.

 427 characters

Photo of Jason
4.23/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz brown with a "enjoy by" date clearly marked. X-mas seasonal themed label

Appearance: Deep dark reddish brown with a fluffy light tan head that is really amazing, even pouring the brew was a treat on to its self ... medium sized bubbly cascading effect when poured vigorously.

Smell: A rich piney citrusy hop and almost rustic aroma of dark grains ranging from toasted to roasted to hints of chocolate and caramel. Very inviting with a pleasing fruitiness to boot.

Taste: Big, full bodied and creamy smooth ... lots of malt and fruit up front with flavours of raw honey and pears. Though a blend of alcoholic esters and aggressive hop bitterness wedge right in the middle and give off a warming feeling plus bitter / sweet earthy citrusy piney flavour. Hints of chocolate and prune in the back end with a dark chocolate cake like finish from the decent amount of residual sweetness in the end.

Notes: Very much a winter warmer with an American flare ... very impressive and a sheer joy to sip at cellar temp (55*F). One of the hoppier winter brews to be had. If you see this one on the shelf, buy it and sip the cold winter away.

 1,159 characters

Full Sail Wassail from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
86 out of 100 based on 478 ratings.