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Wreck The Halls - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

Not Rated.
Wreck The HallsWreck The Halls

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

271 Reviews
THE BROS
85
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 271
Hads: 480
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 8.09%
Wants: 11
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: dolem98 on 11-19-2002

"This annual favorite is a sublime hybrid of an American style IPA and a winter warmer. The result is a bold brew that celebrates the holidays with an intriguing blend of Centennial hops providing elegant citrus notes balanced by a backdrop of a rich caramel malt body. Dry hopped to amplify the aromas and flavor. Available in 22oz. bottles and draught. ABV 6.5% IBU 68"
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 271 | Hads: 480
Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Xmas image, so was looking for something spicy. Mahogoney coloured body with a good head. I was getting hops and spice in the aroma. The taste is some yeast, corriander, with pepper in the finish. The bitterness was unusual, but grew on me.Another fun beer from Full Sail, Thanks Jason. (286 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Best by 2/13/12.

Pours a slightly hazy honey orange with a 1 inch puffy light brown head that settles to a small cap. Thin foamy rings of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt and some herbal/vegetal hop aromas. I am getting a bit of onion in the smell. Taste is of toasty malt with herbal and citrus zest hop flavors on the finish. There is also a slight onion quality in this one just like the smell but not as noticeable in the flavor. There is a mild bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and clean mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty average IPA and the vegetal onion aroma/flavor sort of ruins this one for me. (697 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.67/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

one of the more clever and enjoyable full sail beers ive had. 2011 vintage has lost some of its hop intensity, particularly aromatically, but this is still drinking really nicely. copper in color, mostly clear, with a patchy white head that sticks around. the nose is akin to an English ipa, sweet caramel and toffee and butterscotch and honey all coming from the malt, big and sweet, but there is more hops than just bittering balance. there is an oily hop aroma, not as fresh as it probably was, but it transfers a ton of flavor. citrusy and bright hops compliment and contradict the sweet grain complex, its really well balanced and chock full of flavor. I also appreciate the relative lack of holiday spice flavors, but rather a good drinking beer for the holiday season instead of trying to bottle the holidays. not a huge fan of English ipas, but this one is great. also love the name. well carbonated still and full enough bodied to suit colder weather yet remain drinkable. I like this one a lot. (1,004 characters)

Photo of brentk56
3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a rocky head that sticks and laces, too

Smell: Big caramel blast with a piney hop aspect

Taste: Opens with a caramel flavor that is joined by piney bitterness in the mid-palate; after the swallow, the bitterness dominates, though the caramel lingers underneath, in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A style bender that is a bit too unbalanced to be that enjoyable (458 characters)

Photo of largadeer
2.9/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Dark, clear amber; darker than your average IPA. Pours with about an inch of head, which settles into a ring.

Smell - Herbal and citrus hops with a big grapefruit character and faint dry malt. It smells like a generic IPA.

Taste & mouthfeel - Moderate bitterness with flavors of grapefruit and orange peel; subtle herbal/medicinal notes. A thin and fairly dry malt flavor is present but lacking in character. Medium in body, slightly slick on the palate - pretty standard for an American IPA.

Notes - Blah, yet another uninteresting IPA. Nothing particularly wrong with it; nothing particularly good about it either. People that can't get enough IPA may find this interesting, but I personally struggled to finish my glass. (739 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.45/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Murky rustic orange with sunflower yellow accents at the margins. While there's very little visible carbonation, the firmly creamy head doesn't seem to need the help. The cap is the color of rich, polished ivory bathed in a softly glowing orange light and eventually deposits shards of lace that stick to the glass with tenaciousness.

The nose is sparklingly bright and easily earns the moniker 'hoptastic'. It's much more orange zesty than grapefruit zesty and there's some tropical fruit juiciness in the mix as well. I can't quite pull the trigger on perfect, so 'merely excellent' will have to do.

Whereas the nose just misses greatness, the flavor just achieves it. The flavor is dominated by a sweet hoppy goodness that keeps the lion's share of bitterness at bay. Ripe oranges still lead the way with accessory flavors of pine sap and, oddly enough, pear syrup. White grapefruit is never very far away when one or more of the 4-Cs are in use, and such is the case here. Another thing that I love about this beer is that it's different enough to make it stand out from the crowd of highly hopped Pacific NW IPAs.

The finish is long, lingering and wonderfully mouthcoating. Bitter tries valiantly, but ultimately in vain, to supercede sweet. That isn't to say that this is an overly sweet IPA, just that it uses its sweetness well. The body approaches medium-full and almost reaches it as the beer warms.

Wreck The Halls isn't a palate wrecker of an IPA, but it is a damn good one. Through a truly masterful choice of hops and a brewing alchemy that only the best brewers possess, the boys at Full Sail have impressed me yet again. I could drink beer like this until the end of my days and not tire of its myriad charms. It's a shame that this particular offering is a seasonal and even more of a shame that I don't have ready access. (1,844 characters)

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

nice amber, not as dark as years past, but with a very sticky and foamy head on top, this one was here for a while. The smell was obnoxious, it was so sticky and fresh with hop resin, I did not even know what to do. Such a great mix of pine nugget freshness with a little bit of spice mixed in, dare I say perfect. The flavor was nothing short of extraordinary with a deep rich and stick hop profile, it was much better then any I had tried the last few years. Overall this was great and far exceeded last years version. This is a huge hop monster this year and it really needed to be. (585 characters)

Photo of oberon
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazy dark orange with a huge blooming head that sits for awhile before coming down leaving huge amount of lace very nice.Whoa hops and more hops in the aroma some spruce and evergreen dominate with an underlying nuttiness oh man I can feel the tongue curl now,piney and citrusy up front but doesnt hit quite as hard as expected as the beer warms medicinal flavors come thru a lightly sweet caramel malt flavor comes thru but is not in balance with the big dose of hops.A hopheads brew here a big Pacific NW IPA true to form. (532 characters)

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

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber body with a thin, wispy, white head.

Smell: Aroma of pale and caramel malts along with some citrusy hops and grandma's bowl of wrapped spiced candy.

Taste: More pale malts, as the caramel seems to have gone absent and with only a subdued sweetness. Spicy throughout. Resinous, citrus hop flavor with a moderate bitterness. Hoppy, lingering finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Looked nice and smelled good, but it kinda lost me on the flavor. (508 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow! What a festive beer! Rich, malty and hoppy with just enough alcohol... ... ...perfect for enjoying during the holiday shopping season!!!!
It pours a hazy copper with crimson highlights and a short but creamy ivory head that holds fairly well at the offset, but drops to a thin collar and lacy surface covering once things get started. The nose expresses bright piney and gently citrusy hops (orange, grapefruit) over a sweety caramelish (and lightly maple syrupy) malt. The full body is accentuated by its very fine and natural carbonation from bottle conditioning, leaving it creamy and smooth across the palate. Its rich, sweetish toasted caramel malt is dripping with piney/spruce-like/grapefruity hops. Well balanced with a firm bitterness that never oversteps it bounds. It finishes clean and dry - surprisingly refreshing for a beer of its size! Very nice and well worth searching out. (897 characters)

Photo of Kegatron
2.71/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

22 oz bottle into a couple of tulip glasses.

Pours a hazed copper rose, with a finger of foamy off-white head. This retains with a smooth layer of creamy foam that skims the surface of the liquid, stays frothy, and leaves back some thick patchy lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma is floral, herbal, and bitter smelling with grapefruit character, which just dominates this. There seems to be some spicing underneath, which combines with sweet breadiness across the back and fruity citric orange notes to give off a bit of a holiday cookie feel but the strong hop presence just seems to run those flavors over at times.

Hops are bitter in the taste, with a good bit of grapefruit, pine, and citrus rind being present. The malts are sugary and bready feeling and much like the nose, I'm also picking up some sweet citric fruit notes as well. Festive feeling spices (it's hard to tell if they were coming from the hops themselves or maybe something else was added, that's how aggressive the bitterness is) linger in the back end of the profile but the flavors get leveled by a gritty lingering finish of earth and rind. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a crisp feel to the carbonation but there is a tad too much hoppy oily slickness going on in the body. I will say that the alcohol is well hid here though, so at least this has that going for it.

It seemed like they were shooting for a holiday IPA or Hoppy Amber (akin to Alesmith Winter Yulesmith) with this one but it unfortunately seemed to lack balance and the hop varietals they used clashed fairly heavily with the more festive flavors that were present. This one just didn't work for me at all. I had trouble finishing even my 11 oz portion of the bottle. (1,732 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Acquired via trade from Wasatch, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him.
Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial tumbler pint glass.

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

S: The aroma is a good blend of hops and caramelized malt but isn’t very strong. There’s also a little bit of spice and citrus mixed in.

T: The taste starts out sweet and spicy with flavors of caramel, cinnamon and citrus, then a good burst of hops bitterness follows. The malt character isn’t too heavy but is quite complimentary. As the beer warms, all of the flavors start to come together. The after-taste has a little bit of sweetness, but is mostly bitter.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, dry and slightly sticky finish.

D: Tasty, goes down easy, slightly filling, decent, kick, good hybrid of two styles, overall it’s a pretty good beer. (940 characters)

Photo of mactrail
2.99/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Oh, arf! A wet dog sort of bite to the flavor. Smell is canned tomato soup and some spoiled canteloupe. It's the 2010 edition, but I don't think it is aging well. Looks OK, though, with a classic dark amber, nice head, and lacing along the snifter. Thinnish body.

Very dry and austere, yet with a touch of Old Ale fruity funk. The hops are just plain bitter and sharp. Very harsh for an IPA, where you hope for some mellow resins or something to balance the bitterness. Aftertaste makes me not want to have another mouthful. (525 characters)

Photo of russpowell
4.29/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This 2006 22 oz gem pours amber/copper with 3+ fingers of rocky eggshell white head. Insane lacing & head retention

S: Pineyness & a little fruittyness, not much else

T: Piney hops, maltsweetness & a hint of breadyness up front. Some fruittyness & grapefruit hops follow as this warms. Finishes slightly dry, fruitty & uber piney/citrussy

MF: Medium bodied with pretty healthy carbonation & love the balance

Very drinkable this is to my tastes, enough malts to back up the hoppyness. This should be year round IMO, this is the way I like my AIPAs! (560 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
2.62/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

6.5% ABV confirmed. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard Full Sail label art and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired at me local HEB grocery and served into an Avery stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are below average given the brewery, which tends to disappoint. Best before: 01/22/14. 68 IBUs. Reviewed as a hybrid winter warmer/IPA because the label description identifies it as such.

Served cold, straight from me fridge, and allowed to warm slightly over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a one finger wide head of dull white colour. Decent creaminess and thickness. Okay complexion. Decent uneven lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is bad - about 40 seconds.

Body colour is a dark auburn red. Translucent. Nontransparent. No yeast particles are visible.

Overall, it looks terrible for an IPA and underwhelming for a winter warmer. I can't say it's horribly inviting, but outside of style conventions it's decent. Not unique or special.

Sm: Floral hop character is dominant. Some resinous hop character. A touch of pine. Pale malts. Caramalt. Amber malts. Bread crust/brady malts. Light burnt sugars. Some toasted malts. Light onion. An inoffensive aroma of mild strength. Not spicy or toasty enough to be within winter warmer conventions, but not hoppy or bright enough to be within IPA conventions. I'm optimistic.

T: Burnt sugars. Bready malts. Amber malts. Char. Toasted malts. Poorly integrated floral hop notes along with some oniony/garlicky character and a hint of pine. Way too much caramalt is present, which lends it a sickening sweetness about the climax. The hoppy bitterness on the climax goes untamed, tanking the balance. Lacks complexity, subtlety, nuance, and intricacy. I'm not a big fan. Overripe orange.

Below average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour.

No yeast character or alcohol comes through. There's no spicing here. Should be toastier. I'd like it to commit more to the winter warmer aspect, and to abandon the IPA aspect. The two different builds are clashing here, and the beer isn't better than its constituent parts.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Strange unbecoming presence on the palate: it's too light up front and too heavy towards the backend, lending it a lopsided structure. Overcarbonated. Unrefreshing. Weird body. Too thick. Doesn't suit the flavour profile all that well.

Not oily, harsh, rough, astringent, gushed, hot, or boozy.

Dr: Drinkable but unremarkable. I wouldn't get it again or recommend it to friends. Even its seemingly low price point doesn't justify a second purchase. Not terrible, but pretty mundane.

A largely unsuccessful attempt at merging two styles that just don't go together. Not sure what they were thinking. More mediocrity from Full Sail.

C- (2,974 characters)

Photo of smcolw
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rocky head but it leaves little lace on the glass. Amber color with a large amount of cloudiness.

Surprisingly mild hop aroma. This actually smells well-balanced like a regular APA. Pale malts and flavoring hops predominate the smell.

Mixed malt flavors of pale and crystal, but soon the bittering hop takes over. Slightly on the thin side but not enough to detract. The swallow is predominately hoppy with a long aftertaste. (427 characters)

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

Glad to finally get this, and in growler form, too!

Pours out a hazy dark orange, with minimal head, some glimmers of white foam, but maybe it's lost something in the travel.

Aroima is beautiful, lovely, sparkling mix of potent, fruity hops, mainly the Pacific Northwest variety of course, Cascade, Centennial, ...Mt. Hood? Now, I'm just guessing, but it's spilling over with citrus, pine, and spice. Nice.


Taste: fresh, vibrant, alive, bubbling with brisk, hoppy flavor. Love it. Clean, classy, and bristling with crisp hop bite. Wait, I think I wrote the same sentence twice, two different ways. Whatever.
Tasty, biscuity caramel malt underneath. Snappy.

Lean, but not light bodied, and never too bitter, either. Terribly drinkable. I will polish off this growler with no trouble at all.

big thanks to skyhand! (831 characters)

Photo of chinchill
3.51/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2011 22oz. bottle served in a pint glass. Pours a cloudy orange-amber with a light tan head and lots of visible carbonation. Smooth, medium-full body with excellent carbonation. Excellent flavor of a lightly spiced winter warmer mixed with a West Coast IPA, but marred by a somewhat unappealing, overly earthy aroma. (316 characters)

Photo of jwc215
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wasatch for including this in a trade!

Pours hazy copper/amber with a thin lasting head.

The smelll is of the signature Full Sail yeast strain with orange, caramel and a bit herbal.

The taste is of caramel/toffee with floral/herbal and citric/orange hops and the Full Sail yeast strain. Slight alcohol in the dry finish.

A tad thinner than expected for an IPA/winter release, but hits medium-bodied.

Easy enough, and tasty enough to be quite drinkable. A nice, balanced IPA. (489 characters)

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

The beer pours a nice amber color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a solid pale and crystal malt scent along with a mildly bitter hop nose. It's well balanced with some excellent citrus notes. The taste is good. It has a smooth, bitter flavor that's mildly hoppy, yet balanced with a good deal of pale and crystal malts. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an exceptionally smooth beer. It's not great in any one category, but it drinks well. (553 characters)

Photo of GClarkage
3.62/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12/10/04- On tap at the Toronado in San Francisco, CA

Presentation- Poured into a generic pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a dark amber color. Smallish head and sub par lacing.

Smell- A very light smelling IPA. Sensed some hops, but also sensed a bit of spice.

Taste- Odd tasting beer this is. A tad bitter as expected, but not a whole lot of hops. Maybe like a cross between a pale ale and an IPA. There was also some weird taste at the back of my tongue. A very dry taste, but other than that I can't describe it.

Mouthfeel- Carbonation level was very good. Pretty smooth drinking.

Drinkability- Odd taste, but I likened to it more as I consumed it. I may try it again as my first beer rather than my last. (723 characters)

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

Appearance: pours a clear amber color with a 1" head that lasts a while.

Smell: floral hops, citrus, and some softer earthy tones are pleasant on the nose.

Taste: caramel, floral hops, light grapefruit, orange, and some mild earthy tones create a nice balanced flavor.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Lightly crisp from start to finish. Aftertaste is short as the flavors quickly leave the tongue.

Drinkability: very easy to consume this beer. Nice flavors and this isn't your typical west coast IPA which is what I was expecting. (533 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.26/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a deep, brilliantly clear, amber-tinged, copper color. It is topped by a frothy, three-finger thick, tan colored head. The aroma is redolent of hops; I get notes of pine, a bit of menthol and some definite notes of grapefruit. There is also some notes of something like plastic or wax, which is a bit too dominate of the finish.

The palate is a bit lighter than I was expecting; initially this is pretty nice though. The beer is not quite as hoppy as I was expecting either, it is nicely bitter throughout and notes of pine dominate the flavor profile. The pine is supported by orange-like notes of citrus. Interesting, this beer is just weak, which in an of itself is not necessarily bad, but there are not shining flavors and the beer seems to melt away to nothing. The beer is quite clean and I don't notice any flavor flaws, but this beer is just plain lacking. (874 characters)

Photo of BARFLYB
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle of this in Dirty Jersey. My 2nd from this brewery. Will have more 12oz bottles soon when I find singles. Into a big ass Chimay goblet.

Wreck the halls looks lighter than a normal WW in that this is actually labeled an American IPA, I love IPA's so score for me. A bright red mixed with tangerine orange with a slight haze and minimal cap about a 1/4 of an inch, no lace. A huge amount of grain in the nose followed by some bittering hops, this still smells hoppy after two months on the shelf. Some spice with warming but nothing to overkill, it's fairly faint. Some caramel and sweet scents as well. Taste is pretty carmel forwward with hops backing that and spice in the distance. Small amounts of grapefruit and some earthiness towards the warmth. Some candi cane and grain. Pretty simple and str8 forward. I would say this is more IPA than WW and it aint all that bad. Feel is less than medium with a bitter aftertaste. Carb is minimal and just right. I drank my bottle with ease and suggest you get one to try something worth trying. (1,058 characters)

Photo of billab914
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into my Stone nonic pint glass. It poured a darker amber, almost caramel like in color with a full frothy white head filling the top inch of the glass. Decent head retention and excellent lacing as I drank it.

The aroma has a fresh and juicy hop profile to it. I get some grapefruit and mango notes mixing with a bit of a herbal hoppiness. A little bit of the bready, pale malts come through as well.

The taste shows a little bit more of the herbal, bitter hoppiness to it up front. Towards the finish the juicy and citrusy hoppiness starts to come out with more of those mango and grapefruit notes. A little bit of the sweeter, bready pale malts come out in the finish as well.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with carbonation being moderate. Overall I thought it had some great hoppiness to it. It was very flavorful and drinkable and just an excellent beer overall. (885 characters)

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Wreck The Halls from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
86 out of 100 based on 271 ratings.