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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
83
good

146 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 146
Reviews: 97
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 14.17%
Wants: 4
Gots: 3 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Fish Tale Winterfish Alström Bros
Ratings: 146 | Reviews: 97 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 57md
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
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.

57md, Mar 05, 2012
Photo of DOCRW
4/5  rDev +7%

DOCRW, May 07, 2014
Photo of beernut7
4.43/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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
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!

Spikester, Dec 15, 2008
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.

mvanaskie13, Dec 24, 2013
Photo of meathookjones
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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 bmjivi221
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

bmjivi221, May 20, 2014
Photo of LampertLand
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

LampertLand, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

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.

CalgaryFMC, Aug 27, 2014
Photo of udubdawg
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%

udubdawg, Sep 13, 2012
Photo of fishguyac
3/5  rDev -19.8%

fishguyac, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of hayesjw
4/5  rDev +7%

hayesjw, Dec 20, 2012
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.

Shadman, Feb 08, 2011
Photo of beveragecaptain
3.13/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle. Fish Tale Winterfish pours out a hazy amber color with small head. The aroma is piney and herbal. Sweet caramel flavor balanced by piney hops. Some lemon iced tea flavor. Tropical fruit flavors too. Nice balance, but I'm not very impressed with the flavor in this beer. Mouthfeel is medium. Very low carbonation. Drinkability is ok. I didn't detect the frsh hop flavors described by other reviewers. Perhaps mine was an older bottle.

beveragecaptain, Jan 28, 2006
Photo of Imstillthegman
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to AlohaC for this bottle.

Pours an orange-amber color with a thin white head. Some speckles of lacing.

Smells of citrusy hops and biscuit dough rise from the glass. The citrus seems to run the board from grapefruit to tangerines. Touch of floral in there, also.

Flavor is decent, good malt background balances the hops nicely. Bitter citrus beginning and end with sweet caramel malts in the middle.

Medium body brew with a nice bitter dryness to the aftertaste. Nothing spectacular, but easily a beer that I could sit and enjoy a few of.

Imstillthegman, Mar 02, 2007
Photo of carln26
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark copper color with a thick white head of tight bubbles. A nice sheet of lace is left down the side of the glass. The aroma is dominated by the hops. As discussed amongst some Bas attending a tasting, the aroma smells like Simcoe, mandarin orange, a little grassy character. The site says Chinook, but it really does taste like Simcoe. Not sure, but I like it. There is a little caramel back on the nose. The taste has the sweet/citrus character backed by toffee malt. Nice, sharp (not over-the-top) bitterness. Very slick mouth feel, great drinkability.

carln26, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of atigerlife
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a light hazy brown, looking like apple cider. Light head.

Smell of dark fruit and grapefruit. Taste of hops immediately jumps out. Very dry. Still dark fruit and grapefruit in the taste. Yeasty.

Has a low carbonation. Seems to be lacking a little complexity. Overall, I found this moderately drinkable. Not something I would pursue, but nice to have once in a while.

atigerlife, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of kylemckinnis
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

kylemckinnis, Dec 30, 2012
Photo of Thrasher
2.8/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is a 6 month old sample and it's appalling. The beer has deteriorated -- the chance-y, buttery yeast flavor has breeded with the overly piney hops to create something truly grotesque. Akin to a deep fried pine-tree car freshener. The alcohol burns, badly. Atrocious. I am hoping there is something wrong with this.


Re-review 5/1 Ok this is better. It's not great but at least it's drinkable. Hops are bitter and grassy, almost like stinging nettles. The malts are a bit too smooth, lapsing into a green-apple, butterscotch yeast flavor, but on the whole the beer is not nearly as offensive. The hops are probably the highlight; the rest of the beer ho-hum. Upping the score accordingly.

Thrasher, Apr 29, 2006
Photo of Mojo
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
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.

Mojo, Aug 14, 2012
Photo of djeucalyptus
3.23/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've had a few different bottles of this beer, wanting to be sure I'm getting it at it's best. Poured a 12oz bottle tonight into a goblet.

a. Pours a crystal clear golden straw-honey color with a full two-finger bubbly head of a light pink grapefruit hue. The full bubble head faded leaving an interesting crumpet-like lacing with a ring following down the glass.

s. caramel and toffee yet no malt aroma, followed by floral and citrus hops. Marigolds, grapefruit zest, lemons and lillys create a sweet and fruity aroma.

t. Definitely an IPA. An interesting blend of citrus, floral, and pine hops. A bit of toffee sweetness at the front, then a definite hop bitterness in the middle with a solid bitter hopping. Some odd flavors as well - raw turnip, celery, potato and walnut skins. Maybe some yeastiness, akin to mediocre belgian yeasts. Astringent bread and vegetable undertones. (the first bottle I tried this year had the most powerful presentation of these flavors, but all bottles I've tried seem similar... and it does significantly fade as the beer warms. I left some sit to near-room temp and it seems better)

m. Solid IPA mouthfeel... smooth and a hint of creaminess, medium-light carbonation, and a decent balance of pine hop bitter and sweetness on the front of the tongue.

d. Not a bad beer. Definitely more of an IPA than a Winter Warmer, as categorized. Everything is decent except for the oddness that's throwing me in the taste. Maybe it's just me? or maybe this year's batch is slightly off. I don't distinctly remember this one in past years, so i can't say for sure. If you like west-coast citrusy IPAs, it may be worth a shot.

djeucalyptus, Oct 22, 2008
Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
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.

SolipsismalCat, Nov 21, 2011
Photo of philbertk
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fish Brewing Company--WinterFish Seasonal Ale--2005 Release--12 oz. Bottle--7.50% ABV--70 IBU's. (4.75 / 5.0) Winter Ale--IPA--Mild lacy head. Clear bright thin amber color. Rich spicy floral hop front. Wow. Creamy citrus sweet rich crisp doughy caramel subtle fruit body. Unique mellow Vanilla? flavor. Malt balanced hop spice end. Sampled 10/21/2005.

Fish Brewing Company--Fish Tale Winterfish Seasonal Ale--2006 Release--12 oz. Bottle--7.50% ABV--70 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Winter Ale--IPA--Mild lace head. Slightly cloudy bright light amber color. Vanilla floral hop front. Mild fruit yeast ester hint dry sweet complex crystal malt body. Mild hot hop spice clean sweet end. Not as good as 2005. Sampled 3/5/2007.

Fish Brewing Company--Fish Tail Winterfish Seasonal Ale--2009 Release--12 oz. Bottle--7.50% ABV--70 IBU's. (4.25 / 5.0) Winter Ale--IPA--Thin lacy white head. Clear thin bright light gold color. Rich floral mild vanilla hop front Earthy tangy mild sweet thin crystal pale malt hot hop body. Rich earthy hop spice bittersweet Yakima Chinook hop end. Big earthy IPA missing Winter Seasonal Notes. Sampled 10/28/2009 et. al. $7.99 / 6-Pack.

2009 Release. Thin lacy white head.Clear thin bright light gold color.Rich floral mild vanilla hop front Earthy tangy mild sweet thin crystal pale malt hot hop body.Rich earthy hop spice bittersweet Yakima Chinook hop end.Big earthy IPA missing Winter Seasonal Notes.??

Fish Brewing Company--Fish Tail Winterfish Seasonal Ale--2010 12 oz. Bottle. 7.50% ABV. 70 IBU's. (4.25 / 5.0) Winter Ale--IPA. Thin mild lace light white head. Clear pretty bright rich dark gold amber hint color. Herbal floral hop front. Dry sweet mild caramel crystal malt hop infused subtly Winter spiced rich body. Rich spicy clean hop end. Flavor beats bad buds tonight! Sampled 11/4/2010 from 6- Pack purchased for $6.99 @ The Ballard Market, Seattle on 10/19/2010.

philbertk, Nov 05, 2010
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

djbreezy, Dec 14, 2011
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.

CHILLINDYLAN, Oct 05, 2010
Fish Tale Winterfish from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
83 out of 100 based on 146 ratings.