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Fish Tale Winterfish - Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub

Not Rated.
Fish Tale WinterfishFish Tale Winterfish

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

145 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 145
Reviews: 97
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 14.21%
Wants: 4
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-04-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 145 | Reviews: 97 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ALESwhatCURESya
4.72/5  rDev +26.5%

Pours a burnt orange gold with a very sticky head that fades fairly quickly but sticks to the glass with a vengence. The aroma is filled with hop oils and the ripeness that comes from the dry hopping. The taste is sweet up front, and the hop bitterness follows with power. The flavoring hops are very nicely done and make a huge presence, but don't outstay their welcome. The pine-like bitterness that comes through is absolutely great. The roughness of the hops are so fresh and pure that it actually feels as though it is scratching your mouth (which is surprisingly awesome) but it completely smooths out in the finish. This stuff goes down incredibly smooth and I could handle this all night. They definately used some huge NW hops in this brew and it all paid off. One of the best IPAs I have had in a while.

ALESwhatCURESya, Nov 18, 2005
Photo of unklesyd
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

This is a really great take on the winter seasonal!

Instead of a heavier, spiced winter warmer, this is a very fruity, medium bodied ale with tons of floral character that remind me of a fruitcake, without the glazed fruits.

This is classified here as an IPA, but it's on the fringe end. Kind of like Steelhead's Peregrin Took IPA, not like SN Celebration. The hops are mostly in the aftertaste, though melded really well with the sweetness of the malt. Robust rather than dry.

After trying the Leviathan BW and this, I'm gonna have to give Fish another spin or two when I hit the store again!

unklesyd, Nov 06, 2005
Photo of lostbearbrew
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%

Very orangey-red tones of early sunset...a thick look, as it didn't allow much light to pass through. Driving sheets of lace down the glass, underneath a foamy, chewy white head.

Citrusy and spicy in the nose. Very distinct smell inside - maybe an oak aging or perhaps a distinct yeast? Bartender was nice but had no clue as to the ingredients, so no help there - have to rely on instinct and instinct says an offbeat yeast, or perhaps oak aging.

Strong hops flavor overrides almost all else to start the sip, and then chews on the tongue a little longer. My, I like this. Just enough malt to not make you wince from the hops - in fact, enough to make you taste sweetness on the final part of the sip. This is about ideal for my palate. Somewhere in the mix is an oak or peat taste...sort of like a sherry or whiskey flavor buried deep inside the profile.

Mouthfeel is solid, and gives a nice finish on each sip. Somewhere along the first pint, I fell in love with this brew and had another before we headed down the road. The second was in many ways much better than the first. A truly unique and satisfying brew. I enjoyed it along with my remaining seafood chowder.

lostbearbrew, Oct 24, 2005
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

A hazy (bottle-conditioned) orange/copper body rests sleepily beneath a good-sized head of fine-bubbled, creamy white foam. The head retention is quite good and it leaves some very nice Brussels-style lace about the glass. The nose is a touch fruity from the yeast, sweetly bready, and hoppy with pine and grapefruit (Centennials? Or perhaps a Chinook/Cascade combination?). It's quite smooth and creamy in the mouth, starting with a delicate caress from it's exceptionally fine-bubbled natural carbonation and becoming more solid as its full body becomes apparent. The interplay between the yeasty fruitiness and grassy, subtly pine/spruce like hops is interesting with a speedbump of lightly sweet malt thrown in the middle there. It's not overly complex, or as rich, brash, or bold as some examples, but it is quite enjoyable in its own right - hence, a great drinkability. The only thing that might hold back its drinkability is its 7% abv; but the alcohol itself never shows or becomes a problem, it's just that you can't drink too many in one sitting. Or course the question is "would you want to?"... I think perhaps yes!

NeroFiddled, May 06, 2005
Photo of meathookjones
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%

Body is a deep orange color with a cap of white foam. Foam disappears quick leaving the slightest scattering of lace on the glass. Some caramel malt and a nice bit of citric hops make up the aroma. Fairly mild aroma but pleasant. Flavor starts of a bit sweet with malt upfront before the bitter grapefruit takes control. Tastes quite juicy with hops and is pretty solid. Ends on a slight bitter hop note. Medium body and it goes down smooth with a slight prickling from the bitterness. Good drinkability, while its not a favorite of mine it’s a good solid IPA.

meathookjones, Mar 31, 2005
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.13/5  rDev +10.7%

Dusky, dusty nectarine. The occasional stray bubble struggles to find its way to the surface through the storm of what I presume are yeast. Atop the beer sits a firmsticky cap of lemon chiffon that deposits nearly solid sheets of lace as it slowly fades away. A wonderful look.

So this is what pure Chinook hops smell like. I have to say that I prefer them in combination with other varieties if this nose is representative. It's as citrusy and as spicy as expected, but there's also an odd sort of phenolicity (think Band-Aids) that is reminiscent of Scotch whisky. Now that I think about it, that aspect of the aroma is almost certainly due to the yeast, not the hops. There is, however, more than enough pungent citrus fruit to keep me as happy as a clam.

Winterfish is generously and beautifully hopped. It doesn't taste like any IPA that I can recall, probably because I can't remember drinking a Chinook-exclusive IPA before. Thankfully, it loses most of the phenols on the palate. The central focus is a firm, resinously hoppy bite from beginning to end... with enough malt on hand to smooth things out and sweeten things up.

If I had to describe the flavor profile in one sentence it would be: candied grapefruit and orange peel lightly smoked over a Scottish peat fire. Strange, and yet, strangely appealing. The finish is long and lingering--thanks to the firmly medium body--and oscillates between bitter and sweet.

I can't decide if I like Winterfish or if I love it. If you're looking for something different and consider yourself a hophead, give this one a whirl. It's a fascinating, an original and a delicious ride.

BuckeyeNation, Mar 16, 2005
Photo of RedDiamond
3.63/5  rDev -2.7%

Winterfish is a seasonal winter warmer whose pale and honey malts impart a brighter, golden color to the brew in contrast to other, darker winterbräus. In fact, the color is near copper. This may not be entirely traditional, but Winterfish’s festive overtures are intact with abundant fruit and notes of melon in both the nose and flavor. The taste also speaks of nutmeg with just a touch of alcohol and is punctuated in the finish by crisp, sensible bittering.

Nothing in Winterfish is overstated. It is proudly brewed “in the Republic of Cascadia” with Yakima Chinook hops and leaves behind a lacy tailing of foam on the glass. When served from the bottle, this beer is highly particulate. Pour it slowly to maximize clarity.

RedDiamond, Feb 19, 2005
Photo of WesWes
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

The beer pours a hazy golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is excellent. It has a mildly malty scent that is complemented with a wonderful floral hop aroma; very refreshing. The taste is good. It has a sweet malty flavor that is fruity with yeast. It goes down easy and finishes bitter with a hoppy aftertaste. It has a powerful malty presence and a well hid elevated abv. . The mouthfeel is great. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good seasonal. It has the whole package; a good drinker.

WesWes, Dec 27, 2004
Photo of PopeJonPaul
2.55/5  rDev -31.6%

I have to say I wasn't impressed with this stuff at all. Judging by all these reviews, maybe I got a bad or infected bottle?

Beer started off well, poured a glowing orange color with a good head and a spicy-sweet and floral aroma. The taste was strange though, only lightly fruity with more bitterness than sweetness, and a thin only slightly malty body. It was definitely spiced up, but the spices seemed "off" (I don't know how else to describe it) and the dry and slightly piney finish turned the spices to ash in my mouth. Honestly I could only finish about half a glass, it seemed like it had been watered down or something. If I see one of these I'll try it again just to be sure I guess.

PopeJonPaul, Nov 30, 2004
Photo of ark57
4.03/5  rDev +8%

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.

ark57, Apr 22, 2004
Photo of RoyalT
4.5/5  rDev +20.6%

Appearance – Cloudy and orange in the body with a thick, staying head that left some lacing. This one looks terrific.

Smell – The sharp piney hops jump right out of the glass. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find some softer hops and a balancing malt base.

Taste – This one is something else. The malts come up a little bigger at the tongue, but it is the dept of hop flavor that makes this ale. The piney hops are there in force and seem to go on forever right through the finish.

Mouthfeel – On the heavy side of medium-bodied and very dry.

Drinkability – This has instantly become a personal fav for me. It looks and smells great, tastes exceptional, and went down beautifully.

Comments – My bros BigHuge and ZAP saved me from being the high ball here, but I just love this stuff. Too bad my wife took the rest of the bottle.

RoyalT, Nov 27, 2003
Photo of marc77
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%

Tawny copper with a slight haze. Dense, mountainous, persistent ivory white head leaves muddled lace. The aroma is comprised of rounded tangerine citrus accompanied by sharper hints of pine sap and lemon rind. Soft medium lovibond caramel sweetness offers contrast. Well balanced aromawise. Pronounced toffee upfront in flavor is quickly ensued and nearly overrun by assertive, quinine like hop bitterness. Bitterness is quickly fleeting, however, and malt of a brown sugar sprinkled burnt biscuit nature surges in mid palate. Residual sweetness persists and a combines with the citric hop undertone to lend a toothsome orange marmalade impression. Seemingly moderately attenuated, with both ample dextrins and residual sugars facilitating a firmly viscous, somewhat syrupy mouthfeel. Caramel presence augments as it breathes, leaving the lasting impression skewed towards malt sweetness. Finishes appropriately bittersweet, with a lingering note of candied lemon pith. Quite an enjoyable brew, but a touch heavy on the palate for regular quaffing. Winterfish is simple, but malt driven in its overall character. Hops provide apt balance. Very tasty.

marc77, Nov 08, 2003
Photo of beerguy101
3.38/5  rDev -9.4%

2001 release. Light brown color, medium head. Aroma is fruity and slightly sweet. Lightly malty, somewhat hoppy, spicy. Rather dry and somewhat tart. A lighter flavored winter ale. Mouthfeel is full. Finish is dry and clean. Aftertaste is slightly bitter. Interesting beer.

beerguy101, Aug 14, 2003
Photo of JeffreyG
3.73/5  rDev 0%

Orange in color with a thin head. Citrusy aroma, smell warns of the hops to come. This IPA is dominated by hops and the citrus-like taste comes on strong here. There is a hint of maltyness, but not enough to the balance that I would prefer . A well crafted and beer, but not totally unique. If you lean toward a hop dominated beer this might be up your alley.

JeffreyG, May 21, 2003
Photo of canucklehead
3.9/5  rDev +4.6%

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.

canucklehead, Apr 05, 2003
Photo of zacharius
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

This beer pours a slightly hazy amber color with a white head. It smells hoppy and piney. This beer tastes hoppy with residual flavors of malt, pine and fruit. A very complex flavor. Apparantly this beer has some spruce and juniper in it but not so much that I could notice without coaching. I've drank quite a few of these in a row with no ill effects, some other juniper berried beer is tough on my body. This beer is a cross between an IPA and a winter warmer.

zacharius, Mar 04, 2003
Photo of Gusler
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

The pour somewhat hazy amber color, the head is modest and frothy and a winsome beige color, the residual lace a fine covering upon the glass. Hop floral dominates the nose, sweet and malt laden, crisp and clean to boot. Start has a lot of malt, lightly sweet with a middling top and the finish biting in its hop spicy bite, the carbonation moderate, the aftertaste dry and long lasting and another great beer from “Fish tale”

Gusler, Mar 02, 2003
Photo of ZAP
4.5/5  rDev +20.6%

Grapefruit on the nose....grapefruit on the buds....grapefruit everywhere and I love it....This is a tasty little beverage...pours a hazy deep orange....smells like a glass of grapefruit juice....a full mouthfeel with a very nice malt sweetness that balances this bad boy off nicely....the juicy, grapefruit hop flavors take center stage but the unsung hero is the nice malt sweetness...This is very,very good bordering on outstanding...

ZAP, Dec 02, 2002
Photo of Bighuge
4.83/5  rDev +29.5%

Hazy orange tinted copper color with particulates in suspension. A small head becomes a bubbly film in a few seconds. Lacing is very nice. Huge pine syrup, pungent medicinal aroma. I love it. The taste reminds me of cannabis. Its very resiny. Man I love some of these West Coast brews. What they do with hops out there is similar to what Brett Favre does with a football. Pure magic. This is a bitter beer. In a great way. I liken it to the Bastard a little bit. The oily, resiny, pungent hop contributions are just magnificent. There appears to be some decent malt backing as well. Body is about medium-full. This beer is not for the weak of heart. Gotta thank Matt Maples for recommending this one to me on the horn a few weeks ago.

Bighuge, Nov 15, 2002
Photo of beernut7
4.43/5  rDev +18.8%

This winter ale is truly unique. Pale color, but with quite a heavy body. This is also one of the most heavily hopped winter ales I have ever experienced. Plenty of IBUs to go around. Alcohol content gives another reason to stay in out of the cold.

beernut7, May 04, 2002
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Fish Tale Winterfish from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
84 out of 100 based on 145 ratings.