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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 wrightst
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

wrightst, Jul 07, 2014
Photo of John_M
3.88/5  rDev +4%

On tap at Claudia's today.

The beer pours a light copper color with OK head retention and lacing. Don't get a whole lot on the nose, though what I detect is pretty nice. There's a nice mix of sweet malt, spice and hoppy citrus in this beer, which is replicated pretty closely on the palate. However, the beer has a considerable amount of flavor on the palate, and finishes with a very dry, very hoppy/bitter finish. Mouthfeel is fairly light, but the beer has plenty of flavor. Drinkability is pretty good, with the alcohol well disguised.

This is a solid beer, but I don't think it's anything spectacular. Unfortunately, I had it after a glass of the HUB abominable winter ale, and I think it suffered a bit by comparison. This is a very good beer, but needless to say, it doesn't compare to the abominable.

John_M, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of Viggo
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%

12 oz bottle, no idea where this one came from! To whoever, thanks!

Pours a hazy orange, almost a dark golden, medium sized white head forms, decently thick, settles to a thick ring, some nice lacing on the glass. Smell is neat, sweet and malty, honey and bread, biscuit, caramel, some light floral, toffee, raisin, dark fruit, pretty nice. Taste is similar, a malt bomb, honey and biscuit, toffee, huge malty middle, lightly spicy, bread, brown sugar, very rich. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation, real nice body. This is a great winter warmer, nice maltiness, and not too sweet.

Viggo, Sep 09, 2009
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 beertunes
3.23/5  rDev -13.4%

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.

beertunes, May 21, 2011
Photo of harpus
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

harpus, Jul 22, 2013
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 dirtylou
4.4/5  rDev +18%

12oz, bought a 6 pack at sadhanna for like 8 bucks maybe

appearance: pours a slightly cloudy perfect orange/copper with a goldish hue, beautiful cream head and nice lacing

smell: wow, upon first smell, tropical fruit aromas stick out above the rest...floral citrus and piney hops underneath, some grapefruit, orange, but mostly tropical...one of the best smelling ipa's i have come across

taste: i think i am in love...this stuff is wonderful... sweet and juicy hops, loaded with tropical fruit, mango, grapefruit, orange, apricot, slightly pined, some sweet malts underneath, hop bitterness big in the aftertaste. I am getting more of this tommorow! This is one of the best IPA's I have had in a while

mouthfeel: juicy, oily, hop bitterness

drinkability: all too drinkable

dirtylou, Dec 16, 2005
Photo of LiquidAmber
3.93/5  rDev +5.4%

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.

LiquidAmber, Aug 03, 2012
Photo of GraduatedCashew
3.25/5  rDev -12.9%

GraduatedCashew, Aug 29, 2013
Photo of ccrida
4.47/5  rDev +19.8%

12 oz bottle poured into my large St. Feuillien goblet, Winterfish is a clear rusty orange with a fluffy, off-white head that leaves heavy lace.

Smell is awesome, huge fresh hops, citrus and resiny, with darker, sweet grains, caramel and gingerbread, there is a nice vanilla aftertaste, with the phenols, desert like.

Taste is very estery, a big apricot, but rounded rather then sharper, English ale style. Sweet dark grains, caramel and gingerbread, mildly phenolic with a nice vanilla aftertaste, desert like - chunky apple pie, complete with the cinnamon - most importantly, lusciously a la mode! A nice spice, but the pungency of the hops is lost in the depth of the malt.

Mouthfeel is sharp and very creamy, medium bodied, with sticky malt and a spicy, bitter finish.

Drinkability is pretty high, but it's a big, rich beer. I love this style of winter warmer, the PNW Red IPA! 7.5% is just strong enough to warm while style allowing me a few, and I love the hoppy bite and play of the citrus with the darker crystals. Great price and a great winter warmer

ccrida, Dec 02, 2008
Photo of tavernjef
4.58/5  rDev +22.8%

Glowing orangish gold color with a slight smear to it. Thin, off-white cap. Finely placed, closely scattered, spotty sheets of lacing sticks across the glass.

Toasty with a big orange oil aroma starts from the pour. Very pungent, rich, oily, and deep with a well-rounded citrusy realm with notes to cannibus, the sister of hops, and some doughy fresh malts.

Taste is well oiled in citrusy hops, oily, flavor heavy with oranges, a flint of lime, lemon and tangerine, yet calmly bitter with rinds and resins, somewhat smokey with herbal nuances. Quite a nice taster. Nice malt backing thats lightly toasty and bready/doughy. The bitterness closing in the finish is delicate and nurtured to perfection with a nice amount of citrus rinds, oils, and smokeyness.

Smooth and oily textured feel from front to back. Quite silky for an IPA, even its bite tends to be smoothed out in oils and resins. Body is moderate in mediumness with a rich, soothing, quaffable, drenchable, lower carbonation that is utterly beyond average in drinkability. Damn good stuff. Winterfish would be one to bring to the frozen lakes while fishing through the ice if it were here in MN.

A "brake the chill" thanks to cvschaller for the many samples!

tavernjef, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of Cyberkedi
3.15/5  rDev -15.5%

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.

Cyberkedi, Mar 04, 2012
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 Boone757
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Boone757, Nov 30, 2013
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 drpimento
3.88/5  rDev +4%

I like this much more than their organic IPA. More balance. Poured with a small white head and decent lace. Odd reddish amber color wih traces of pink?!?!?! Aroma is very hoppy rounded off with some caramel malt and accented with spice and resin. Flavor is BIG in the hop department. Some residual sweetness. Long hoppy finish. Decent beer.

drpimento, May 02, 2007
Photo of cokes
4.7/5  rDev +26%

Pours a gently fogged orange-gold gourd color stacked with a modest cap of soiled white.
Pungent nose full of wafting reefer tendrils and dripping tropical fruit, mostly pineapple and assorted citrus rinds. To say the nose is bright is an epic understatment.
It gallops into the mouth with a workmanlike malt backing of shortbread and caramelized marshmallows, and grows slightly fuller and breadier by midway. The hops are obviously huge, but moreso in flavors than bitters....though there is a fair amount of later here too. Explosive with its pithy tropical fruits, more pineapple, mango, fried plantain, and orange- and lime rinds. Resinous gan-J tackifies the close with its piquant smoky herbalisms.
Medium in the mouth, sturdy in build, moderately low in carbonation.
This is a tremendous Holiday quaffer and likely the best "winter" IPA I've had. This makes Celebration look a lot less festive.

It should, however, be noted that it doesn't age worth a shit. Even after 4-5 months, it's notably degraded. So if it ain't absolutely fresh, throw it back.

cokes, Dec 03, 2005
Photo of blackie
3.58/5  rDev -4%

appearance: The fluffy, white head partially recedes after awhile. The beer is a slightly burnished copper color.

smell: There's a good amount of fruity sweetness here...apples, pear, some tropicals (guava? yes, guava). Tame hop presence for the IPA style, but the green leafiness is still nice.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is on the soft side, and the body just under medium.

taste: Slight esters, sweet tropical fruit (mango, for example), a little cidery, and mild hop bitterness. The hops are way too subtle for an IPA. A good tasting beer, nonetheless.

drinkability: good, but not much of an IPA

Another bottle from dirtylou's stash during my stay.

blackie, Jan 02, 2006
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 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 Deuane
3.58/5  rDev -4%

A-Bright amber with a thin off-white head that degraded to a thin film that left some lacing.

S-Light piney/peppery hops. Some citrusy notes too. A complex hop bland for sure, but light overall.

T-At first, while cold, I did not like the tatse of this brew. Tatsed a bit "fake" to me. But, to give it a chance I let it warm and I am glad I did....the piney hop essence came through and turned a beer that was almost undrinkable into something fairly enjoyable! That unusual "fake--chemical-like" tatse is still there, lightly in the aftertaste.

M-Medium body with a nice bitter kick. A bit of alcohol coming in at the end.

D-A decent brew...but there is a strange ending(aftertaste) that I do not care for. Classified totally worng, but oh well...I didnt list it!

Deuane, Mar 16, 2008
Photo of Reidrover
4.22/5  rDev +13.1%

12 oz single. Darkish orange beer with a small off white head, that goes fast, leaving some lace. Great sweet spicy hop aromas more grapefruit than pine! Lovelly tasty IPA indeed..great flavors of pink grapefruit and sour berries and a wonderful honeyish sweetness to balance the tartness. Very nice mouthfeel quite smooth and delictable. Overall a very very nice IPA.

Reidrover, Nov 22, 2006
Photo of msubulldog25
3.9/5  rDev +4.6%

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...

msubulldog25, Jan 19, 2010
Photo of thecheapies
3.93/5  rDev +5.4%

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.

thecheapies, Dec 27, 2012
Fish Tale Winterfish from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
84 out of 100 based on 145 ratings.