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Fish Tale Winterfish - Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub

Not Rated.
Fish Tale WinterfishFish Tale Winterfish

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

102 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 102
Hads: 158
Avg: 3.79
pDev: 16.89%
Wants: 3
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-04-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Fish Tale Winterfish Alström Bros
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Reviews: 102 | Hads: 158
Photo of delta490
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice hazy orangey gold with t a thick white cap of head that has good retention and leaves some medium-sized sticky lacing. The aroma is mild and predominantly malty, with maybe a hint of pine hops but without any really distinct characteristics. Certainly nothing off but just not very noticeable. The taste is a little more robust, but still not very pronounced in any aspect. There's a bigger hops hit, mostly pine and spice, and just a little malt sweetness in the background. The body has a nice feel to it, not to heavy or light, and little bit of spice pops at the finish. Reminds me of a solid American Pale Ale more than a Winter Warmer. Maybe they do winter differently in Olympia.

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Photo of mactrail
4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Trumpeter Public House in Mt. Vernon. Big foam on the first glass from the keg. Amber color with lots of lacing in the tall monic. Flowery and spicy aromas.

Pleasantly sweet with a medium body. wonderful malt taste with zingy aromatic hops. The spiciness fills the nose and lingers on the palate. Fruity hops with mango and apricot flavors.

Delicious malty brew that is totally drinkable. It's an interesting paler sort of winter brew. My favorite of the 2014 winter beers.

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Photo of SitkaSteve
3.91/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oh yeah, this thing. This was poured into a pint glass.
The appearance was a decent looking dark red to slightly brown color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated to fine glazing speckling around the glass. A decent lacing appeared in some rings.
The smell had a sweet and light weird spice arranging itself decently under my nose (ginger maybe, uh...but somewhat cooked, perhaps).
The taste followed the nose and had a decent sweet to spicy conglomeration on my tastebuds. A light sweet aftertaste leads to a sweet and dry finish.
The mouthfeel had a decent spice rolling over my tongue and sat about a medium on the body, fairly sessionable for 7.5%.
Overall, not a bad winter warmer, I'd have it again.

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Photo of PacNWDad
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Pours with 2 fingers of frothy white head that dissipates slowly. Lots of little blobs of lace on the side. Color is golden red, clear. Aroma is of roasted malt and piney hops. Starts mild and sweet, but the bitterness of the hops quickly takes over. This has a long finish. It is pretty full-bodied and solid. A very enjoyable beer - I will have to visit the brewpub on my next trip down I-5.

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, December month notched with no year for dating. Pours moderately hazy/cloudy bright orange color with a 1 finger dense off white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of grapefruit, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, caramel, honey, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance of citrus/pine hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; with solid strength. Taste of grapefruit, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, caramel, honey, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Fair amount of pine/grassy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, lemon/orange zest, pine, caramel, honey, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice balance and robustness of citrus/pine hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; with a good malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, fairly sticky, and lightly creamy mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice IPA. All around good balance of citrus/pine hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; and very smooth to drink. It is at least a year old in age, but still a nicely enjoyable offering as it stands now.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Poured from a 355 ml bottle into an English pub glass. A dark orange-yellow amber with a half-finger of off-white foam gracing my glass. Looks like a pale ale or IPA, smells like a pale ale or IPA ... Lots of tropical fruit (mango), floral, and piney hop notes on the nose along with a brown sugar sweetness. Certainly more hoppy than your average winter warmer but quite sweet as well. I get more of the dried mango from the nose along with apricots, tangerine, pine needles, dried currants and sultana raisins, pancake syrup, and a faint nutty note. Although maltier than many of the aforementioned pale ale family, this is still a straight up kissing cousin to said clan. The finish starts sweet but dries out over time. Has a borderline syrupy mouthfeel that may or may not jive with the aggressive hop bill and the carbonation is at the low end of moderate. Enjoyable if a tad rough around the edges.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
3.89/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, color is light gold, head is bright white nice bubbles, some lacing; it is a bit opaque, not looking like a winter warmer to me.

Aroma is pale malt, light booze and citrus and pine hops, nice scent for a winter ipa.

Taste is very good, pretty clean malts, not too sweet, crisp and bitter hops, with the hop flavor a good mix of pine and grapefruit.

Mouthfeel is a little sweeter than some ipas, lingering malt flavor but the hops are big enough to dry it out.

Overall, slight knock because this is not a winter warmer and I thought it was when purchasing, but it is a good beer.

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Photo of Givemebeer
3.53/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm rating this as an ipa because that's what it is...

A: pale orange yellowish nice lacing and good head retention

S: citrusy slight malt backbone

T: grapefruit pineapple a touch of lemon

M: doesn't come together perfectly at the end but still a pretty nice lingering citrusy finish

O: nothing like a winter warmer. Maybe it's a different formula this year? No spices and not malty hops dominate. For an ipa, not half bad.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I bought a 12oz bottle of this on sale at Total Wine. Who knows how old this is but it is a winter warmer: which winter? I am not sure. This one looks different than most winter warmers. This one is golden orange in color as opposed to the typical chocolate/brown/caramel colors associated with the style I don't know how to score the look, but there is a nice frothy head on top. Nice lacing too. Cloudy due to the yeast sediment on the bottom of the bottle. Looks a lot like a wheat beer.

Aroma is filled with sweet caramel, yeast, alcohol, and some citrusy and grassy hops. Somewhat fruity but certainly on the sweet alcoholic side.

This one has some hop bite to it. Starts out kind of sweet and fruity and finishes hoppy bitter with a warming alcohol feeling. Borders on cloying, but still a decent, balanced beer. Bitter grapefruit, caramel malts, alcohol, more citrus. Oily and resiny.

Not a bad beer, I must say. The alcohol is kind of front and center, but I guess a winter warmer is supposed to be warming. A different interpretation on the style and I quite like it. More geared toward hops than brown sugar and malt. I could see myself drinking this after hitting the slopes for some backside grunge nose grabs.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.92/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Caramel orange color. Lacing looks good. White and airy head, but it fell fast. Nice light color.

Caramelized peach and mango in the nose. Assuming it's from the hops, but there's no perky bitter leafy notes that rise up. Just tropical fruit nuances. Very mild and biscuity. Quite the departure from a winter ale.

It IS from the hops. Soft peachy hops with notes of mango, papaya, and nectarine. A little muddled with light caramel from mostly pale malts. Not much toastiness. Malts are a little flat, but they apply their own attributes with light balance. Alcohol is staved off a bit. This is close to a winter pale ale or weak IPA.

Thick for an IPA, which it is not, but it's pretty juicy for a warmer with that light carbonation that doesn't draw much attention. Booziness is light, but spicy.

Not an ideal warmer, so no props for the style. Still delicious and almost hoppy. Recommended.

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Photo of sam_bliss
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler into glass

A- Golden translucent light copper with an off-white head and decent lacing as we worked our way down the glasses.

S- Some fruity esters and sprucey hops. Tropical and fruity sweet scents remind me more of a pale ale than a winter warmer, but it smells great.

T- Tastes like a bigger Belgian dubbel. Some saison funk or perhaps another flavorful yeast compliments banana and hoppiness with just a smattering of caramel malt. Super tasty but like the aroma, it's a bit off style.

M- Plenty of body but not thick-feeling or syrupy. Good after-feel.

O- This is a great winter beer for those who like hoppy beers and Belgian-style beer. IPA meets trappist dubbel meets winter ale!

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.41/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fish Tale WinterFish Seasonal Ale

LOOK: Clear gold with a white soapy film, leaves a ton of lace on the glass. Looking like a well made, sticky IpA style beer.

SMELL: Bready malts, strong earthy hops, some cat pee (not uncommon) and dusty cocoa.

TASTE: Some grapefruit influence, strong bitterness, resinous qualities, and a solid malt body. Alittle citrus, some cocoa, and a bit herbal and tea like.

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Photo of Mojo
3.59/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a cloudy orange/amber with a little sediment observed. (In fairness this bottle might be a little past prime.) The head is minimal and so is the lacing. The smell is subtle with a hint of citrus. Taste is an initial malt with grapefruit overtones giving way to a not unpleasant hoppiness for the finish with no aftertaste. Basically pretty average.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.92/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a coppery orange amber with a thin white head and light lacing. Citrus and pine aroma; hops. Citrus and citrus hops to start, slight malt and caramel with a hoppy finish. A little subdued compared to a IPA, but pleasant. Not getting any holiday spicing here, but a nice hoppy ale.

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Photo of 57md
3.64/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is light copper with little head but enough retention to leave some lacing. There is a pleasant hop nose to this offering. The upfront taste is dominated by a cidery alcohol feel that is not unpleasant, but not terribly tasty either. The finish, by contrast is pleasantly hoppy.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.18/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hoppy aroma has a sour citrus note that has both grapefruit and orange elements plus a woody underpinning. It pours a pretty clear amber with a thick, fine-bubbled white head that leaves some generous lacing. Flavor is hoppy and woody, a little bitter, with more than a hint of fruity sweetness and some citrus. Smooth texture has about average fizz and body. Overall, not terrific, but worthy of a try.

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Photo of arizcards
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a single at Total Wine in late November for $1.99.

Beer poured a murky amber orange with a decent white head that is leaving lacing behind.

Nose is light grapefruit rind and slightly sweet.

Taste is bready malts, slightly sweet, finish with strong grapefruit rind.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and fairly smooth.

Overall this is a pretty decent beer. Taste does not flow well together though i like the breadt APA malt profile.

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Photo of Haightfulbrew
3.1/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pour: Sunset cloudy orange, produces a thick finger of off-white, determined head, that settles slowly into patches and leaves 360 degree lace.

Nose: Sour lemon, fresh citrus, grapefruit, honey, fresh cut grass, toasted white bread. Hint of fish?

Taste: Starts hoppy. Citrusy, crisp and grassy. Then a millisecond of sweet honey malt, then a big bitter finish. The end of this beer overwhelms everything else. Quite hoppy, to the point of being a bit unpleasant and vegetably .

Mouth: Medium body, with a spritzy carbonation that comes on in the finish.

Overall: Not incredibly interesting. Not sure why this is being called a winter beer. Somewhere between a light IPA and a dry hopped pale ale.

The website says the grain bill is all Pale and Honey Malt. Hops are Chinook throughout the boil, and Chinook to dry hop. This is a dry hopped pale ale, through and through.

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Photo of djbreezy
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

appearance - bright orange, mostly transparent, white frothy head, excellent lacing left on the glass

smell - a nice mix of pine and citrus hops up front, excellent aroma

taste - pine up front with some notes of citrus that round things out, a nice subtle malt body to give the hops a boost, some honey mixed in there as well that shows on the finish

mouthfeel - medium/full body, heavy carbonation

overall - not sure why this is categorized as a winter warmer, it's very much an ipa in flavor profile and appearance, hops are plentiful and it's great tasting

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed 9/2011.

Pours a slightly hazy honey orange with a 1/2 inch bone colored head that settles to a thin cap. Thin foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt and some spicy herbal hops. Taste is of sweet malt with a very spicy herbal and pine hop finish. A medium level of bitterness lingers on the palate after each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp yet smooth mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer but I wouldn't necessarily categorize it as it stands now (a solid IPA for sure). Doesn't hurt that the beer is organic either.

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Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.86/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Reviewed alongside Anchor Christmas Ale 2011.

A: Clear light amber with two-finger, white, foamy head that lasted more than a few minutes. Phenomenal lacing.

S: Light floral malt and pine. Honey.

T: Light sweetness and pronounced hop bitterness. Floral and piney. The bitterness lingers quite a while. The malt flavor is kind of subdued.

M: Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Smooth, dry, and warm.

O: This was pretty good. A little hoppier than I like personally, but definitely one of the better winter warmers out there. I liked the Anchor one better.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $1.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, golden-tangerine body with a goodly-sized, foamy, white head. Thin smattering of lace on the descent.

Smell: An opening sniff of pale malts, with bits of grain and sweet-scented honey, folding seamlessly into hoppy aromas of herb and citrus.

Taste: Pale malts, minutely bready, and with a clover honey-esque sweetness. Grassy, herbaceous hops giving over a bit of grapefruit as well. Moderately bitter. A little more maltiness loitering on the back half, but, predominately, it's hoppy until the bitterish, long finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation. A bit of creaminess there, too.

Overall: It can be a surprise (good or bad) sometimes to pick up a beer with the word winter as part of the title that isn't a spiced ale of some sort. Listen, I've got a beat-up Nokia phone from 2003. No interwebs access, no fancy-schmancy beer apps, so, I gotta go with what the beer bottle tells me. 'Winter' on the label can usually imply a malt-forward brew or something potentially packed with spices, the only ingredients listed were "water, orange barley, and hops". I assume yeast was utilized as well at some point. At any rate, a nice brew.

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Photo of notsoprobeer
3.67/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden straw in color (hazy) with a white head that dissipated fairly quickly. Aroma of mainly citrus and pineapple. Grapefruit hops dominate the flavor, but there's bready malt backbone to it. Medium bodied with an effervescent mouth feel. The finish is very dry and grapefruit hops linger along with a touch of alcohol. I was surprised to see that this is 7.5% ABV. Very drinkable—if you can deal with a high dosage of hops.

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Photo of beertunes
3.27/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a clean, clear copper/gold color, MUCH lighter than is typical for the style, with about an inch of slightly off-white head that had good retention and lacing.

The aroma had a nice spice and malt scent with some hops and yeast floating around in the background. The flavor did not live up to the promise that the aroma made. All the notes were there, but very subdued and calm, especially after the scent made such a big impression.

The body was much thinner that is expected for the style. Drinkability was decent but not special. When I first moved to the area 11 years ago Fish quickly became one of my favorite breweries. Maybe it's my palate changing, but it seems that over the last 5-6 years Fish's brews aren't as noteworthy as in the past. Still, this beer is worth a shot if you see it.

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Photo of Shadman
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Has an AIPA look about it. Hazy orange, cloudy( unfiltered) frothy rich head. tons and tons of gooey lacing.

Faint caramel malts which is impressive given the powerful citrus and mostly pine aroma. It's like a christmas tree and fresh peeled grapefruit rind had a baby.

Same caramel malts have a tough time against the twin titans of graefruit and pine. Grapefruit citrus seems to be the winner. Pine left to provide a bitterness that almost begs you to take another sip. Alcohol is barely discernable.

Thick, almost chewy mouthfeel.

Not what I was expecting given the usual suspects in this style. Very much, as others have noted, like a double/imperial IPA in the character of this beer. After getting over the initial surprise I have to say I'd have it again.

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Fish Tale Winterfish from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
85 out of 100 based on 102 ratings.