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Bison Organic Gingerbread Ale - Bison Brewing

Not Rated.
Bison Organic Gingerbread AleBison Organic Gingerbread Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

262 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 262
Reviews: 143
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 14.96%
Wants: 6
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bison Brewing visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
20 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-03-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 262 | Reviews: 143 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by silverking:
Photo of silverking
3.61/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- deep garnet with a thin tan head. Poor head retention and lacing.

S- roasted coffee and ginger. Toasty malt backbone.

T- chocolate, ginger, lightly roasted coffee. Lightly bitter finish.

M- light bodied, velvety carbonation.

O- not bad, but not great.

silverking, Nov 24, 2013
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is truley a winter warmer,why I bought it in hot June is beyond me but its pretty darn good.Poured into a standard pint glass a deep mahogany brown with a tight fluffy beige head that kept form well for quite some time.Ginger is the main element in the nose wich is expected along with some earth and brown sugar,a little thin and sharp in the mouth but it mellows after a bit.A good mix of spice and earth on the palate,the ginger doesnt overpower but is the main attraction,ther is a solid dry earthiness in the finish.Bison makes some decent organic beers and this is no different.

oberon, Jun 25, 2008
Photo of JudgeRoughneck
2.93/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This is a mohagany-colored beer with a huge chocolate-colored head maintained by vigorous carbonation. Smells are very light and prettymuch smells like a molasses cookie with a wisp of English hop in the background. Ginger taste takes the forefront, backed by cidery tastes of light molasses and brown sugar, along with a light roasted character. Not a bad beer, but lacks robustness. Mouthfeel is light and thin. I have no specific complaints, but didn't find this beer that drinkable. I think as much as I like it other places, ginger is a little off-putting to me as a beer ingredient.

JudgeRoughneck, Dec 26, 2006
Photo of Shakerman
3.25/5  rDev -4.7%

Shakerman, Dec 26, 2012
Photo of SmellsofMahagony
3.25/5  rDev -4.7%

SmellsofMahagony, Apr 12, 2013
Photo of iemailjack
3/5  rDev -12%

iemailjack, Dec 09, 2011
Photo of aquazr1
3/5  rDev -12%

aquazr1, Jan 04, 2014
Photo of magictrokini
3.13/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Surprisingly dark pour with a solid tan head. Gingerbread aroma with some malt. Taste was unexpectedly good, given Bison's track record. The porter quality really comes out; malty, roasty, and chocolatey. Nice hop bitterness works really well with the gingerbread in the end.

magictrokini, Dec 05, 2008
Photo of juicebox
3.75/5  rDev +10%

juicebox, May 09, 2014
Photo of masikon
3.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

While perusing the beer section at my local grocery I came across this interesting sounding beer. "Gingerbread ale", the text described it as a porter but after pouring this into my glass i realized it really isn't a porter at all, far too light. A pretty brew nonetheless, dark brown and only slightly translucent, the head was small and faded quickly with no lacing. Smell was very interesting with clear ginger scents at the nose. Unfortunately this scent doesn't transfer to the taste as well as I hoped with the ginger being noticeable but very faint. Tastes like a flat brown ale, or a very light porter without much in the way of roasted flavors. Mouthfeel was extremely light considering the dark hue of this beer, very confusing. After all this beer is interesting and worth trying, its just that nothing jumps out to make me want to try it again.

masikon, Dec 02, 2005
Photo of HeyYoMar
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%

HeyYoMar, Jan 19, 2014
Photo of dmk91
3.75/5  rDev +10%

dmk91, Nov 13, 2013
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears a deep dark almost black hue with some mahogany brown highlights coming through the dark color of the body this beer has. Head forms thick, foaming khaki tan head forms fine even lacing as it dwindles down. Aroma is super spiced especially after finishing an Anchor OSA with the subtle spice this one is really popping with Christmas spices. Nutmeg, ginger, allspice, cinnamon with caramelized sugars and a touch of dark roasted malts. Flavor is really harsh with spices, dark roasts, and a slightly burnt roasted malt coffee accent. It clashes with the base beer which is an organic porter. Wtih my next few sips I'm starting to adjust with the high level of spices and dark roasted malts, minimal herbal hops are masked by those spice additions. Mouthfeel is medium bodied finishes super dry with the bitterness from the spice additions. Overall a decent Christmas beer experience I'm glad I just picked up a bottle, good in small quantities, definitely a specialty holiday ale.

WVbeergeek, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of chinchill
3.68/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle. Poured very dark brown with a semi-durable beige head.

Aroma: excellent balance in a blend of porter and gingerbread.
Flavor: not so balanced as the aroma, but richer and with more ginger. Also a touch of spicy hops. Lingering bready malt and ginger flavor.

Feel: medium body and carbonation; lively; enough ginger to add to the feel.

O: good but may improve with a little aging.

chinchill, Jan 27, 2014
Photo of OStrungT
4.47/5  rDev +31.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a brownish red color. It has a light brown head that fades quickly, leaving very few laces. The aroma is a little hard to describe. It smells like a gingerbread man. It has a spicy aroma also, but mostly, just gingerbread. It also tasted like a gingerbread man. A liquid alcoholic gingerbread man. It is better than I expected. It is quite good. It has a spicy taste also. Ginger, nutmeg, cinnimon. It also tastes a little sweet. I cant really detect any hops over the spicy flavors. This beer is mild, and refreshing. It leaves a spicy ginger aftertaste. It might be a little overcarbonated, but not so overcarbonated that it detracts from the beer. I think this beer would make a great session beer. The flavor is quite appealing, and I dont think it would get old. Also, the alcohol content, while not stated, is rather low, I think, and that means you could drink a few of them. If you see this one, buy it. Try it. You might like it.

OStrungT, Jul 13, 2005
Photo of Adkins1203
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%

Adkins1203, Feb 28, 2013
Photo of watermelonman
3.6/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured to medium brown color with a small head. Lace is minimal.

The smell is unique and appealing, with plenty of gingerbread flavor. Vanilla comes through too. The taste also has a lot of gingerbread, but it doesn't come out as well. Malt content seems minimal. It is pretty light in the mouth.

watermelonman, Nov 26, 2006
Photo of wildcatboy
3/5  rDev -12%

wildcatboy, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of IntriqKen
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not just a holiday ale...this seems to be a respectable Porter underneath it all.
Pours very dark amber...almost black with a tan head that becomes a sticky ring of lacing.

Aroma is dusty cinnamon and very light ginger spice with a lot of toastiness going on in the background giving it a bready aroma.

Flavors are smokey, toasty malt without a lot of sweetness, followed with spices such as powdery cinnamon and dry gingerbread spice...again without a lot of sugar.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with tiny carbonation and aftertaste becomes dry and quenching from noticeable hops.

Very interesting spiced holiday brew, to be sure.

IntriqKen, Mar 10, 2007
Photo of Metalmonk
3.58/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a soapy head that reduces to a thin skim quickly. Shoe-polish black in color, with very quiet, mellow bubbles.

Spices hit the nose immediately, reminding of a fragrant pumpkin ale. And, indeed, it reminds of gingerbread with each whiff. While the other, more everyday beer elements are missing in the aromas, this smells so good that I don't mind.

But when the spices are the only thing present in the flavor, I start to wonder where the beer is. They got the spice combination right, resembling gingerbread in the flavor, but some of the heartier, more robust elements central to any good ale have been left behind.

Mouthfeel is too thin, especially when the spice flavors would demand something stickier and thicker.

A nice spicey indulgence that was not a pain to drink, but it lacks the complexity it needs to be a super-recommendable beer. An enjoyable beer with a bit of a difference, just nothing outrageously good.

Metalmonk, May 14, 2006
Photo of Magpie14
3.93/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: poured much like a thin porter with a ruby crusted brown being the dominant hue. Closer inspection displays dark oranges and murky burnt brown shades. Lacing is subpar and a foamy top ceased to exist after a rigorous pour

S: delicately sweet gingerbread smells with some toasted caramel malts. As my whiffs continue, I find this brew relies on a hearty dose of spices mostly cinnamon, sugar, and a pinch of cloves. It is by far the best gingerbread smell I have partaken in without actually having a piece in front of me

T: the flavor profile has much of the spiced whiffs already mentioned. Cinnamon, brown sugar, and ginger play gingerly on the tongue. In addition to this, the maltiness is taking on a molasses sugar cookie with toasted crystal malts flavor. Along with this is a light chocolate bitterness floating about. I am digging this brew for its unique flavors and style. It finishes just a touch dry and grainy

M: if any improvements could be made it would be here. I think the feel, considering the flavors, is kinda thin and would gain strength with a heavier body. I classify the body pretty mild that is just shy of being creamy. Still, it moves pretty slick down the hatch and overall it has a decent feel

D: tasty flavor experience and a nice compliment for the season. I give props to Bison for the adventurous style of melding gingerbread and beer together. I think it works!

Magpie14, Nov 26, 2009
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.58/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It's extremely deep chestnut body appears black in the glass, but displays brilliant ruby highlights when held to the light; and the creamy, yellowish-tan head maintains a solid 1/4" cap throughout the glass and leaves some nice lace along the way. Cinnamon is evident in the nose along with some mild, dark fruitiness and a dry, bready maltiness. It's mildly crisp in the mouth to start-off with as its medium body releases its median carbonation; and it warms to become lightly creamy as it crosses the palate. At first its flavor is dominated by a cinnamon spice that seems to dull it's bready, lightly toasty, and even slightly chocolatey malt; and then a ginger note steps forward to totally eclipse whatever maltiness may have been there - and it finishes very dry (but not bitter) with a lingering note of ginger. The spices are there, clearly; just not the sweet malts needed to back them up.

NeroFiddled, Aug 28, 2003
Photo of cjgator3
3.43/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brownish black color with a light tan head with good retention and lacing. The aroma is holiday spices and dark roasted malts. The taste like the aroma is dark roasted malts up front with some sweetness and the spices coming through in the finish. The mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount if carbonation. Overall, not a bad little holiday porter that is worth a try.

cjgator3, Dec 06, 2012
Photo of freewill35
3.25/5  rDev -4.7%

freewill35, Dec 17, 2012
Photo of jheezee
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%

jheezee, Feb 04, 2013
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Bison Organic Gingerbread Ale from Bison Brewing
78 out of 100 based on 262 ratings.