Schlafly Christmas Ale - The Schlafly Tap Room
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Ratings: 338 | Reviews: 156 | Display Reviews Only:
3.73/5 rDev +1.9%
Tasted On: 12-16-2013
Freshness: Bottled on 11-01-2013
Packaging: 12 oz. brown bottle, pry-cap
Glassware: Tulip pint
Purchased: Received from a friend
A: Clear, dark amber colored beer, with an offwhite head standing a finger high. Little in the way of head retention and just a little lacing sticks to the glass.
S: Aromas are not strong, but I get caramel malts with some spices such as ginger and clove.
T: The taste features a lot of various spices like allspice and cinnamon plus some apple cider-like fruitiness.
M: High carbonation with a medium body. The finish has a lot of the spice character noted earlier.
O: Overall I'd say Schlafly hit the mark they were shooting for as this beer tastes a lot like a mulled wine, grog or cider. Not something I'd reach for often, but a well-made beer nonetheless.
Thank you Kirk for the beer!
12-17-2013 04:38:46 | More by sommersb
4/5 rDev +9.3%
Pours a clear amber color with a thin slightly yellowed head. Decent retention, but no lacing.
The aroma is really nice. A big citrusy orange peel up front, with a bit of a hop presence as well and a nice touch of spice. Some sweet honey finishes out the nose.
The taste is nice. A gentle hop profile in addition to the orange peel gives a really nice citrus component. The holiday spicing is also really nice. Notes of cinamon, nutmeg, and cloves linger on the palate. I really love this beer.
Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and lightly carbonated with a gentle and fine bubble.
Drinkability is moderate to high. Certainly an easy beer to consume as it's tasty and simple, however spiced beers aren't generally sessionable which will limit this beer a bit.
On the evenings following this review, I also got a nice sappy piney hop presence (subtle), and a biscuity malt note.
11-18-2008 23:15:26 | More by Goliath
3.1/5 rDev -15.3%
I'm not crazy about spiced beers in general, but I guess it is the proper day to drink this.
Pours a cloudy red color with a nice white head. The aroma is has a bunch of malt and cloves. The flavor has a bunch of clove in it and a touch of bitter orange. The malt presence is strong but the spices overpower somewhat. The body is nice but I'm still not crazy about this beer.
12-25-2007 05:43:37 | More by drseamus
3.38/5 rDev -7.7%
Presentation: 12oz brown bottle, bottled on 10-28-2008, with a nice classy-looking Christmas label.
Appearance: A vigorous pour produces a pretty burnt orange/amber beer with some very fine sediment in suspension. This beer has very high, cascading carbonation (quite pretty) and an off-white head with great retention.
Smell: Sweet, spicy, and very "Christmas-y." This is somewhat like their pumpkin ale, in truth, minus the pumpkin aromas themselves. There are strong notes of clove, delicate but aggressive spicy/piney hops, and bitter orange peel. It's kind of like Christmas in a glass. Quite nice.
Taste: Sweet caramel maltiness, backed by a whallop of clove spiciness and a bit of spicy piney hops as well. It's definitely sweet across the palate, but ends with a small hop kick and a somewhat dry finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, a bit prickly from the high carbonation levels.
Drinkability: It's fairly tasty, but almost a little bit overpowering in the spice. I usually find myself picking up one or two of these a year in a mix-a-six...but a sixer might be a little over the top. I'm curious to see what a little aging might do to this.
Conclusion: Not a bad winter beer, and I like the balance between malt sweetness and hops (a lot of spiced beers seem to have little to no real hop presence) but at the end of the day the spices are just a little overwhelming for this to be truly great.
12-26-2008 06:04:33 | More by BedetheVenerable
3.9/5 rDev +6.6%
Orange amber ale with thick white head. Head sticks around in a thin blanket with some lace patching.
Smooth aromas of whole grains, caramel, spices, citrus fruits and mild alcohol flood the nose and lure me in.
Diverse flavor profile. Caramel malt sweetness with a touch of wheat. Semi-assertive citrus hop bitterness. Orange. Nutmeg. Mild alcohol warmth. All in balance.
Brawny medium-bodied with good carbonation and a crisp and semi-dry finish.
This is a solid winter seasonal. Seems to warm with each sip. Plenty of complex and interesting flavors that blend well together. One of the best brews yet from Schlafly's.
01-20-2011 04:38:09 | More by bnes09
3.88/5 rDev +6%
A - Red/brown hue. Full finger of off white head. head dissipates quickly. not much to any lacing.
T - smell the spices from my glass which is 2' away. carmel, nutmeg, pumpkin and vanilla. solid nut.
T - Carmel. A moderately sweet but Nutty, pumpkin and a bit bitter from the alcohol.
M - A bit frothy, alcohol tingles the roof and tongue. Viscosity is high.
O - I thick its a descent Christmas brew. 8 ABVs could be hidden a bit more. burns a bit more than i wanted. Missing all forms of lacing. Solid carmel malt. I would buy this a christmas next year.
12-16-2012 23:38:41 | More by weonfire
3.95/5 rDev +7.9%
Poured a 12oz bottle into my Smokestack goblet.
This beer poured a nice reddish brown with a fluffy 3 inch white head that left some seriously sticky white lacing. The aroma is really spicy. Clove, nutmeg, a hint of cinnamon, a just a bit of orange zest are apparent in the aroma. The flavor follows suit with what seems like my wife's hole spice cabinet thrown in. Clove and nutmeg are definitely the most prevalent flavors with orange zest, date and a bit of vanilla. The mouthfeel is quite a bit creamier then what I expected. Absolutely fabulous. This is a good beer, and I'm proud to call Schlafly a "local" brewery.
01-09-2009 05:20:32 | More by hwwty4
3.98/5 rDev +8.7%
Bottled on 11-14-2011. Poured into a Duvel tulip. Nearly clear amber body with a touch of red tint. Small, less than one-finger light tan head that dissipates rather quickly and leaves very little lacing.
The aroma starts like a hefeweizen with some bubble gum sweetness and the noticeable orange peel coming through as well. A few other spicy notes follow.
Tastes like a winter warmer-type brew. Sweet start and finish, with some added spices (not yeast) like the coriander coming through. Otherwise, drinks somewhat like a sweet wheat beer with the added spices.
Although the flavor is not off the charts, nothing offends and it is actually very drinkable. For the high abv, there is no real notice of alcohol. I will enjoy this as a dessert beer during the holidays and think it will be a good fit in that role.
12-11-2011 21:06:40 | More by FanofHefe
2.6/5 rDev -29%
My roomate brought me back some of this from a trip to St.Louis, which I shared with beer club.
It was not too good; I didn't think it was as bad as some others (aforbes) did, but the taste pretty much kills this beer. It pours a deep clear red brown, looks ok so far. Smells like christmas. Piney, nutmeg, cloves. Not bad. The taste is overload of ginger, nutmeg, cloves, orange, pine... pretty much tastes like a christmas air freshener in beer form. On the plus side, the alcohol is very well hidden (errr... covered-up?). Mouthfeel is ok, a bit dry. Drinkability is hurt by the taste. But I bet if you simmered this stuff on the stove it would make your house smell really good.
12-19-2006 05:24:31 | More by shivtim
3.78/5 rDev +3.3%
Clear cinnamon/copper color with a modest off-white headthat shrinks to barely a ring and leaves only hints of lacing.
The aroma is very spicy with citrus and pine notes.
The taste is also heavy on the spices - nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves - toward the middle some caramel malt sneaks in with orange/grapefruit flavors toward the end. The finish is slightly piney with lingering spice notes and some definite alcohol warmth for cool weather enjoyment. This is a lot like their pumpkin ale without the pumpkin and a heavier load of spices.
It would be nice after shovling snow or just for holiday enjoyment. Medium/full bodied, nice mouthfeel and drinkable, but better for sipping. A little heavy on spices for pairing with most food but should be nice after dinner.
11-29-2006 05:10:59 | More by whynot44
3.64/5 rDev -0.5%
A: amber, rich frothy light khaki head
S: deeply spiced (cloves/nutmeg/cinnamon) banana bread; in all of my times drinking schlafly's christmas ale - its a consistent. not bad - just very unique.
T: sweet light pale malts on front; very crisp spice (clove/nutmeg). peppery finish.
M: thin; medium to medium-high carbonation. makes me question if it couldn't be dialed back a bit.
O: definitely gets me in the holiday spirit. it's the perfect beer to consume pre- or post- holiday shopping - but next year i just need to remember, i don't shop enough to buy a case of it. the ABV is very well hidden, so consider that before you bust it out at the christmas office party.
12-05-2012 18:49:22 | More by craft_shannie
4.25/5 rDev +16.1%
Served in a smaller sniffer that shows off its chestnut amber, low head persistant ring. A fireside beauty!
Cinnamon, clove, and sweet caramel meets the nose at the taproom with all its competing aromas. Malts don't dominate but easily support the spices that give a gingerbread impression to the palate.
Well balanced with alcohol and IBUs easily handling sweet malts and dextrins that provide a nearly full mouthfeel. Still young but very nice as winter approaches. Pleasing carbonation that allows sipping without going flat.
Alcohol very nice and although apparent very nice in that it overall supports what the brewer is doing.
Hats off to Steve Hale and the rest of the Schlafly brewers.
11-07-2006 04:03:50 | More by karst
3.4/5 rDev -7.1%
poured into a snifter
A: An opaque cherry color. A tan one-finger head that dissipates fast. Frothy lacing.
S: Cinnamon, cloves, allspice. Biscuity malts.
T: Follows nose with a festive flavor. Caramel, sweet with a spicy finish.
M: Thin with a kinda watery carbonation. This is what ruined it for me. I miss the robustness from the Pumpkin ale.
O: Disappointed. Wanted to like it. But just too thin. Add some robustness and you have my vote.
12-25-2013 18:57:17 | More by brewskifan55
Schlafly Christmas Ale from The Schlafly Tap Room
83 out of 100 based on 338 ratings.