Fish Tale Winterfish - Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub

Not Rated.
Fish Tale WinterfishFish Tale Winterfish

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BA SCORE
84
good

156 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 156
Reviews: 102
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 13.64%
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 156 | Reviews: 102
Photo of germaniac
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy brownish gold, with a dirty white head and considerable lacing.

Smells of ripe citrus, mainly orange zest with an oily,hoppy tang.

Taste is mellow, fruity hops, with a toffee-like sweetness in the finish complimented by a light hoppy bitterness in the aftertaste.

Easy to drink at 7.5%, maybe a little TOO easy.

Manages to pull of the IPA as a Winter seasonal, while going the
opposite end of the hop flavor spectrum from Celebration Ale.

Purchased at a Nugget supermarket in Davis, CA.

Photo of canucklehead
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just to prove how lucky Americans are ,this is the only U.S. ale
available in B.C. liquor stores at this time.

Luckily this is a big hoppy beer that tastes big and bold. There is hints of fragrant adjuncts that give off a oily, resinous note. I like
the complexity and high ibu's that make this a sipper and not a
simple IPA. If this part of the so called "New Imperialism" in
PNW brewing then bring on the rest of these big beers.

Photo of mvanaskie13
3.89/5  rDev +4%
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.

Photo of msubulldog25
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A pintful, poured at Laughing Planet. Can't recall ever trying this brew before...had it on a 'balmy' low-50's day at lunch...not exactly 'winter'.

A: Copper-ish tawny orange with a slim head of near-white cream. A decent amount of slow-rising carb bubbles. Very nice coating of suds curtains, breaking apart but holding true like rings on a tree trunk.

S: More 'caramel' than 'hops' in the nose, more sweetness and a moist/coffeecake-type candy aroma. Even a hint at 'raisin'-level sweetness.

T: Orange-like hops and a punch of bitterness (a bracing, almost burning, grapefruit), followed by slightly milder fruit and browned maltiness. Plenty of flavor, just over-the-top towards hops, which isn't really my thing. Good, still...

M: Thickening chewiness, more lip-smacking goodness building with each sip. Medium-full body with good carbonation.

D: Hmm...not exactly 'drinkable' by my definition, yet a nice one to hoist one of, and a brew I'd probably have again. 'Average' weight for a Winter Warmer (which means it packs a sneakily potent punch).Probably worth having again, though I prefer the more malty versions of the style...

Photo of SitkaSteve
3.91/5  rDev +4.5%
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.

Photo of oakbluff
3.91/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce Bottle courtesy of CBA via CdnBIF- thanks man! Great looking beer out of the gate. Clarity is top notch along with a fluffy white head and nice light orange glow. Smell is spicy malts and hops. Taste- very nice. Reminds of Alpha King. Malts are quite stong in a flavourful cookie dough kind of way and balance out the agressive hops nicely. Hops are predominatley of the bittering kind, but pop up in a citrus juicyness on the back end. Very dry finish. Carbonation is appropriate for style and brew is quite drinkable. No doubt much tastier fresh as this has a few months under its belt- held up well though.

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.92/5  rDev +4.8%
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.

Photo of andrenaline
3.92/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy golden orange, thin layer of head with little retention and no lacing.

S - Hop bomb... Not at all what I was expecting. Sweet lemon dominates and I'm struggling to find any spices that would be common in any winter warmer.

T - Strong citrus hops with an earthy finish that lingers, slightly peppery and the ABV is nicely hidden.

M - Fills up on the tongue and goes down smooth, though the finish is a little too dry for my liking.

D - Once I learned that this wasn't your typical winter warmer, I was able to better appreciate it. At first I thought they got the production lines mixed up and were pouring their IIPA into the Winterfish bottles! If you're a hop fan, this beer is definitely for you. Really tasty!

Photo of thecheapies
3.92/5  rDev +4.8%
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.

Photo of Shadman
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
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.

Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.94/5  rDev +5.3%
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.

Photo of CHILLINDYLAN
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Slight haze. Bright golden orange. Gold and tangerine Highlights. a finger of oily offwhite head. Big bubble sheets of foamy lacing.

Pine and Grapefruit. Toasty, caramel, buttery biscuit.

Juicy fruit, tropical, citrus. Buttery biscuit and caramel. Spicy herbal resins. Bitter resinous grapefruit and pine aftertaste.

Dry, semi sticky. smooth, yet slightly light body for style. low carbonation.

Good winter brew. could use a bit more malt backbone. Nice light and hoppy. Was considerably better when it first came out.

Reviewed on Feb 11, 2010.

Photo of Spikester
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber with a two-finger off-white head and copious lacings. Aroma is citrus and peach with floral hops.
Taste is citrus peach sweetness immediately pushed aside by bitter grapefruit and peachy hops. I can see why many see this as an IPA. Thankfully a winter warmer without the presence of brown sugar! Reminds me of a Red IPA I had a few nights ago. This beer masks the 7.5%abv very well, so watch out.
This beer was brewed in Oct. so it is fairly fresh. A fine pour, good job Fish!

Photo of IronDjinn
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked up the last 6 of this at Willow Park, and boy howdy was I glad I did.

Pours out a deep bright slightly hazed copper hue, lots of carbonation, massive foamy off-white head.

The aroma is chock full of citrus fruits: tangerine, some lemon zest, white grapefruit, with a biscuity caramel malt beneath it.

A well behaved IPA, flavour is all in the right places, but doesn't drive a grater over the palate while dropping napalm in its wake. Biscuity malt is the wave that all of that hoppy goodness rides into the shore on.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side, but in a way it parallels and compliments the tone of the flavour as well.

A pleasant IPA, easily a session ale if it weren't for the fact that the abv% should stop you after a few (or it'll end in tears...). A curious pick of style from Fish Tale for a winter seasonal, but the fruity hops hold their own against a lot of other winter warmers out there.

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - slightly hazy copper, one finger of head left a solid lace ring
S - citrus and pine, with a light grainy and sweetness
T - strong citrus zest and pine hops, biscuity malt with a some honey sweetness
M - good carbonation kick with a great hop bitter with some breadiness on the finish
D - was difficult to review at first as it was not what I was expecting from a "winter warmer", although I suppose that category is loose at best. This is like an American DIPA, and a good one. Nice hop backbone, and generally a refreshing bitter beer

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
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.

Photo of brewandbbq
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle at 55 degrees.

Pours hazy copper with a thin off-white head that dissapated quickly. A few whisps on the surface with dotted lacing throughout the glass.

Aromatics lead off with a substantial amount of hops and malt. Citrus, grape jam, mineral-dusted pine resin, and ripe malt. Crisp and fruity with a gypsum nod.

On the full side of medium bodied with a tacky, sticky mouthfeel.

A bright citrus and pine punch leads off the palate with a drying, firm bitterness following through. A solid malt base sustains throughout and gives the beer a nudge in the "Winter Warmer" direction.
Warming alcohol and lingering snappy hops follow through.

Finishes with lingering malt, a ridgid bitterness, and resinous hops.

Definately tasting like a big, malty IPA. Not the freshest but certainly holding up well and damn tasty.

Photo of jdense
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle purchased at John's Marketplace, poured during Twelve Beers of Christmas tasting, 12/22/09.

Golden amber body, one finger white semi-rocky head, medium dissipation with nice lacing. Big hoppiness in the nose, there may be some dry bready malts but they are subsumed by the spicy, floral Cascade presence. Taste is certainly more of an IPA than a traditional Winter Warmer, huge hoppy bitterness, and a big bitter finish. Big carbonated mouthfeel. Not the most drinkable of beers at this ABV. While the WW category lacks precise definition, this is certainly more of an (D)IPA than WW, IMO. However, a great hoppy holiday ale to counterbalance the spiciness and fruitiness of other beers served during this time of year. Worth a try for the hopheads.

Photo of djbreezy
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
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

Photo of Halcyondays
3.99/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours orange with a soft 1/2 finger head. Good head retention, no lace.

S: English toffee, sugar cane juice, apricot and orange.

T: Cedar hop hit immediately. Rum soaked oranges and sweet caramel round out the flavour. Ethanol is evident, but it melds well with the other components and doesn't take over the beer, just a complementary flavour.

M: Definite bit of smooth solvent booze character, medium/full body with a lingering bitter hop aftertaste.

D: A good winter beer, definitely a sipper, the flavours are powerful and direct. A satisfying after dinner beverage.

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

Pours a cloudy orange color, nice carbonation, nice little creamy tannish head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing. The nose is hoppy, nice touch of pines/citrus, and caramel. The taste is pretty hoppy, lots of pines/citrus, and caramel. Medium body. Very Drinkable, this is a very tasty IPA, definitely would recommend.

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

12oz bottle purchased at Huckleberry's in Spokane for $1.29. "Spawned on" date of December (presumably 2006). Haven't had this in a couple of years so it's time for another review.

Poured an orangey color with an inch or so of beige foam that took a couple of minutes to dissipate. A foam collar endured throughout it's tenure in my Boundary Bay pintglass. Lace was left in the form of what could be described as a beer neglige.

The nose of this beer was mainly of citrusy hops, more at the sweet end of the citrus spectrum. There was also a mild, malty sweetness.

Definitely an easy drinking IPA, with the hops at the lemon-orange end of things, as opposed to the more dry, grapefruit like flavors. That's not to say this isn't dry - it is, but in fairly restrained fashion. The malt backing, while subordinate, is stronger than many IPAs I have had, but it still tastes balanced.

This is medium bodied, with a moderately oily mouthfeel. Carbonation is about right.

This is a nice change of pace from more hoppy IPAs, which I tend to like. Definitely goes down easy, yet still remains hoppy enough to be interesting. I wish I would be able to encounter this on-tap locally, as I think a few of these would really hit the spot on a cold winter's night.

Photo of markgugs
4.01/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 12oz. bottle into a tall pilsner glass (bottled Oct. 2007 according to the notch on the bottle)

A: Poured a gorgeous, amber/reddish color with a nice solid finger of creamy, off-white head. A nice thin layer stayed with the beer the whole way down, leaving a satisfied lacing behind.

S: Not at all what I expected, lots of toffee-ish, malted aromas. I was expecting to be overwhelmed by tangy and/or citrusy hops. Slight citrusy zest on the finish.

T/M: Not really sure why this is listed as a "winter warmer," when it's far, far closer to an aggressively hopped IPA, as those PNW crazies love to do. Very bitter on the finish, but before you get there, a nice toasted blend of hops & malts blast the tongue. Slight aspirin-like dryness adds an ample dose of bitterness to boot. Just the right amount of carbonation makes this beer incredibly easy to drink.

D: This would be a very easy beer to polish of a sixer of. It's not too aggressive, it's not too over-the-top, it's a great drinking beer, just not a winter warmer.

Photo of ark57
4.03/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It is a dark orange gold color with a big, creamy off-white head. There is a slight haze and it leaves some decent lace as well. The first thing I notice in the aroma is a fruitniess. It reminds me of peaches. There maltiness is balanced out by some piney and citrus hop aromas. The medium body is fruity (apricot and peaches?) with a nice hoppy finish and a touch of alcohol. It is a nicely done bitter beer for the winter.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.03/5  rDev +7.8%
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.

Fish Tale Winterfish from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
84 out of 100 based on 156 ratings.