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Great Lakes Christmas Ale - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Christmas AleGreat Lakes Christmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,171 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,171
Reviews: 772
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 13.13%
Wants: 107
Gots: 212 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: OldFrothingSlosh on 11-16-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,171 | Reviews: 772 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mscornwell
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

mscornwell, Jan 24, 2012
Photo of Clowerweb
4.63/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass. Freshness date: 03/22/2012. Says "best served at 55 degrees F", but I am drinking it from the fridge. I'll sip slowly an edit the review if anything changes.

A: Brownish orange with bright amber highlights, nicely filtered, very clear. 2 fingers of slightly off-white head with respectable retention, but little lacing. Great looking beer, aside from the lacing (or rather the lack thereof), not much to complain about.

S: Honestly, it smells skunky with some piney and citrusy notes, but the nose is on the lighter side with this one, so I'm not picking up much here. Almost smells like an IPA or APA. Definitely detecting hops, but the skunk is a little off putting.

T: Tastes nothing like it smells. Has a very nice depth of flavor with pumpkin, cream, cinnamon, hops and definitely nutmeg. Almost tastes like a swig of eggnog with your pumpkin pie - appropriate for a Christmas ale. It starts and finishes basically the same, no flavor twists to speak of in the mid palate or finish, although the cinnamon and nutmeg spices tend to shine through a little more in the aftertaste. I'm really digging the flavor, it tastes wonderful.

M: Moderate carbonation, body is on the more full side of medium, feels a bit chewy after the finish, doesn't really stick around too much, however it does leave a little bit of carbonation tingle in the cheeks and a creamy coating on the back of the tongue.

O: Oh yeah, this is an amazing beer. This is one of those "warm up with your significant other by the fireplace on a cold winter's evening" kind of beers. You could totally session with this one too. Looks awesome, tastes AMAZING, and leaves little to complain about other than the strange skunky smell.

I've never been disappointed with anything Great Lakes has to offer, and they make me proud to be from Ohio. I'd like to go tour the brewery someday, it's less than 100 miles away. With such a solid lineup of world class brews, who could resist? If you see this somewhere, definitely pick it up, you will have no regrets. Re-buy factor: very high.

Clowerweb, Jan 24, 2012
Photo of DrGonzoDDS
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

DrGonzoDDS, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of xavier390
4/5  rDev +1%

xavier390, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of challenja
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served On Tap at the Black Squirrel in Adams Morgan DC.

A: A Nice orange red glow with a head that dissipates quickly to no existence at all. A look of really well aged and expensive bourbon.

S: Now here is the stinker, not that it smell that bad but its not as powerful as most Christmas Ales. There is cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, breaded malt, and wild cherry. It could be that for a badly washed glass deadened the smells. Really good powerwashers are needed like in upscale beer joints.

T: Nutmeg ripe cherry pumpkin spice honey light cinnamon tast, subtle mid-western hops, and a light bready backbone. Subtle sweetness that entices the palate to have another!

M: Nice lingering medium carbonation that is passionate between the gums. I like how it lingers on the palate and entices the tongue.

O: A real winner in terms of a winter Christmas ale. I rank it third only behind the Mad Elf and Fireside Chat. Sorry Anderson Valley Winter Solstice.

challenja, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of Amyliz4
4/5  rDev +1%

Amyliz4, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of jacewg
2.5/5  rDev -36.9%

jacewg, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of jaredtuk
3/5  rDev -24.2%

jaredtuk, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of claytong
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

claytong, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of warelphant
5/5  rDev +26.3%

warelphant, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of nmeiborg
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

nmeiborg, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of scootercrabb
2.5/5  rDev -36.9%

scootercrabb, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of MuscleConfusion
3/5  rDev -24.2%

MuscleConfusion, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of syrupjoe
3.38/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into Swag Brewery pint glass. Celebrating MLK Jr. Day with brews and Xbox 360. This is leftover from the holiday season, so some flavors may be a bit faded.

Pours an almost crystal clear copper color with one finger cream colored head.

Nose is very strongly pumpkiny, giving off notes of ginger, cinammon, and perhaps nutmeg.

Taste is quite spicy, with the abovementioned smells coming through in the flavor with a significant amount of lingering bitterness. Rather sweet with a slight soap taste and slick finish.

Overall the spices in this are blended quite well but do not make for a very drinkable beer. After a few sips of this one I'm looking for someone to share it with.

syrupjoe, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of shand
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received as a gift from the ever so generous staff at Winthrop Liquors.

Pours an amber color with a tiny head. Aroma is very sweet and spiced - honey and a ton of holiday spices dominate the nose here for sure. The taste is very sweet and very spiced. It's almost like an imperial winter warmer, if such a thing were to exist. It's very well-done though, with a cutting, slightly alcoholic finish that stops it from becoming cloying. The mouthfeel is rather thick, but has a pretty good level of carbonation. It's also fairly drinkable, especially considering the sweetness. Overall, a solid winter beer for sure. Every beer I have from GLBC makes me kinda sad I'm outside of their distribution, as they'd be a staple in my fridge for sure.

shand, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of oldsmuggler
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

oldsmuggler, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of dgsumm
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

dgsumm, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of marct
3/5  rDev -24.2%

marct, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of atwooder
5/5  rDev +26.3%

atwooder, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of TheBrewo
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was served from the tap at The Distillery in Victor, NY. The beer arrived in a house pint glass, and looked the color of light copper. It held a one finger beige head, which receded slowly, leaving thick lacing, and an even thicker film over the top of the beverage. Carbonation was highly active, and no sediment or haze was noted. The aroma was of thick malts, steel, and a faint caramel. Once those initial notes cleared, the beer smelled like a holiday fruitcake. It gave off synthetic sweetness and candied cherries. On the far back were deeper notes of cinnamon, light clove, and finally a faint grassy hop, with inviting warm citrus. As we sipped, the taste began with beautifully deep malts that were a bit salty and cooked, but not to the point of smoke or char. Mixing in was a dried cranberry sourness, and an oaky smoothness. The peak of flavor was a veritable spice rack. There was gingerbread, nutmeg, bittering cinnamon, and an almond nuttiness, all mixing in with the deeper malts from the front. The finish was of soap and pine, as the hops roll through to take the malts by surprise. There was an additional orange cleanliness, with medicinal phenols and coppery grain to round things out. The aftertaste breathes of salty malts, clean citrus, warming fusel alcohols, and more “Christmas” spice and fruitiness. The body was medium, but thicker, and the carbonation was high to the point of being prickly. There was a steely coating and cooling to the sip, with a warming to the belly. Each sip had fine slurp and smack. The abv was appropriate, and the beer drinks easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the spicy, warming finish. It really does taste like winter and Christmas. They were able to maintain such stark spice, without forfeiting the other important qualities to the beer. The malts remained robust throughout, and the hops were appropriately light. This is the exemplary winter warmer.

TheBrewo, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of jackiek9
5/5  rDev +26.3%

jackiek9, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of nucmedmario
4/5  rDev +1%

nucmedmario, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of Pat316
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

Pat316, Jan 12, 2012
Photo of BLTalpos
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

BLTalpos, Jan 12, 2012
Photo of FirstBrewsoon
2.75/5  rDev -30.6%

FirstBrewsoon, Jan 11, 2012
Great Lakes Christmas Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 2,171 ratings.