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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

2,137 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,137
Reviews: 770
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 12.88%
Wants: 98
Gots: 198 | 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: 2,137 | Reviews: 770 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ortie
4/5  rDev +1%

ortie, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of WastingFreetime
3.43/5  rDev -13.4%

Transferred from the recent Christmas beer session in my tasting notebook.

Pours out nearly dead flat. No head at all, period. Only a few sad spartan bubbles occasionally rise from the bottom of the tulip glass. I am disappointed. This lack of carbonation causes the heavy body of this beer to feel unpleasantly syrupy in my mouth. Now that I've gotten all the bad things about this brew out of the way, lets talk about the good things. Color is a brilliant ruby/amber with minimal haziness, smells of honeyed ginger and spice exactly as promised on the label, flavors of gingerbread and spiced Christmas cookies come through cleanly just as promised by the nose, fresh, sharp, and clean flavors overall that really make me feel like the holidays... If only there was carbonation, it could have been something stellar.

WastingFreetime, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of DoctorB2B
4/5  rDev +1%

DoctorB2B, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of vicsju1991
4/5  rDev +1%

vicsju1991, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of pumarocks
5/5  rDev +26.3%

pumarocks, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of thearsenal
4/5  rDev +1%

thearsenal, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of Fallingonwater10
5/5  rDev +26.3%

Fallingonwater10, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of richardflyr
4/5  rDev +1%

richardflyr, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of stxSS07
3.55/5  rDev -10.4%

Best by 2/24/12 into a Killian's Pint

A- Pours a clear copper color with maybe a finger of off-white head that fizzles away pretty quickly. Not much lacing.

S- Sweet malts and maybe some honey? I definitely get the cinnamon and a bit of ginger. Really comes on strong on the back end.

T- Again, big sweetness followed by waves of cinnamon. I can really pick out the honey subtlety along with a bit of the ginger, but I have to work for it.

M- Pretty thin with high carbonation. I expected it to be thicker/fuller for a winter warmer.

O- This is a pretty one-note brew. I think I came into it with too high of expectations generated by this site. I really think that Lakefront Holiday Spice is still the king of winter warmers for me, but this isn't a bad brew by any means. Really drinkable with a deceiving ABV...perfect for the cold months.

stxSS07, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of magine
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%

Poured into a nonic.

Pours a nice copper amber. Has a bubbly light cream colored head, real nice carbonation with some lively action. Leaves a nice sticky ring along the edges. Head settles to a pocketed wisp lace. Good looking brew.

Brews smells nice and malty and spicy as well. Subtle honey and ginger is noticed as advertised on the label. Good smelling brew.

Brew is nice a spiced; ginger and honey are in the forefront of the flavors. Good peppery spice and very nice creamy middle. A very nice balance to the feel of this one. Good creamy smooth malts and some nice hops peak through. Brew finishes slightly dry and leaves the tongue peppered. Wow good stuff here.

This brew is an excellent holiday treat. Great complex flavors here and a nice hidden higher abv. Great stuff here - highly sessionable.

magine, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of plumcrazyfx
4/5  rDev +1%

plumcrazyfx, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of BradtheGreat7
4/5  rDev +1%

12 oz. Brown bottle with GLBC Christmas label. Classy look. I poured one into the proper Great Lakes Christmas Ale snifter and one into a standard pint glass.

A - dark translucent red with some hughes of dark copper. Great clarity with a nice rising bubble effect. Thin off white head and lacing.

S - all of the holiday spices one could ask for. Cinnamon, all spice, and ginger. Sweet whiff of honey and maybe some nutmeg. Good fruity aromas of what reminds me of cherry pie. Smells a lot like Christmas!

T - lots of spice. Clove, cinnamon, ginger, and all spice. Nutmeg notes give the sweetness needed to give it the balance needed. A hint of caramel just before a somewhat light spicy hop finish.

M - nearly full bodied. A little thin, but a very smooth mouthfeel. Alcohol isn't noticed at all. Though it still provides that warming feeling in the throat and stomach. Which is nice this time of year.

O - best winter warmer I've ever had. Period. Continues to be my Christmas ale of choice. This beer just screams Christmas. This is the brew that's meant to be experienced on that cold christmas eve night. It has the look, smell, and taste of the holidays. This is the best of the best this time of year.

BradtheGreat7, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of pest
4/5  rDev +1%

pest, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of MacStinson
4/5  rDev +1%

MacStinson, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of millelacsmark
4/5  rDev +1%

millelacsmark, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of bpgpitt10
5/5  rDev +26.3%

bpgpitt10, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of gdhawley
4/5  rDev +1%

gdhawley, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of teyuders
5/5  rDev +26.3%

teyuders, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of nhindian
3.28/5  rDev -17.2%

12oz bottle poured into a Great Lakes snifter.

A - Pours a burnt, rust orange like burnished copper. It is essentially see-through with about 1.5-fingers of head. Retention is pretty good, and the lacing isn't bad either.

S - The nose brings full aromas of holiday spices, especially cinnamon and honey. A strong caramel malt backbone keeps everything balanced, and the back-end carries a hint of ginger spice.

T - The flavor seems to be a little more disjointed than the nose, with the flavors muddled and unclear. While easy to get the influence of the spices, ginger, and honey, they clash all at one point rather than having clear transitions. The sweetness tends to harm this beer as well, since there are two disjointed flavor profiles combating for top dog. It becomes a little better as it opens up, but it still isn't the most balanced.

M - Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with good carbonation. Slick and sweet, with a decently long finish with a spicy aftertaste.

D/O - Drinkability is moderate. I was hoping for a little more from this beer, but as it stands this is about a middle of the road Winter Warmer. A bit too sweet for me, and the spices and additional flavors just don't seem to play well together.

nhindian, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of SalukiAlum
4/5  rDev +1%

SalukiAlum, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of biggred1
3.78/5  rDev -4.5%

Coppery amber with a creamy sand colored head that leaves blobs of lace on the glass as it melts. The nose is spicy cinnamon, ginger snap cookies and honey with underlying toasted barley. This is good ale for sure, the honey is certainly more evident in the flavor than the aroma and the ginger is a tad heavy handed for my liking. All in all though the flavors work well together and the alcohol is well hidden. Medium light bodied with prickly carbonation. A fine take on the style, I could certainly see drinking this around the holidays.

biggred1, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of brycevolk
5/5  rDev +26.3%

brycevolk, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of OneEyedJack
5/5  rDev +26.3%

OneEyedJack, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of ninner00
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

ninner00, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of mjtiernan
3/5  rDev -24.2%

mjtiernan, Nov 15, 2011
Great Lakes Christmas Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 2,137 ratings.