1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Gritty McDuff's Christmas Ale - Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Gritty McDuff's Christmas AleGritty McDuff's Christmas Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

183 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 183
Reviews: 124
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 12.37%
Wants: 2
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 01-11-2002

If it looks like Ed just got merrier, you're right. Every November heralds the return of our holiday seasonal, Christmas Ale – available on draft and in six-packs. Our Christmas Ale is a robust E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter) full of holiday cheer. Christmas Ale has a lovely, dark red/amber color and a rich, full-bodied, malty taste with a slightly roasted undertone. We brew our Christmas Ale to an original gravity of 1064 (about 6.2% alcohol by volume) using only the finest English Pale and Crystal Malts, with a touch of Roasted Barley as well. A blend of Clusters, Styrian Goldings, Saaz and Yakima Goldings leaf hops round out this hearty brew. Gritty's Christmas Ale has no additives, fruits or spices. It's just a good honest ale, perfect for the season. And to top it all off, it's already gift-wrapped! Happy Holidays!

28.5 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Gritty McDuff's Christmas Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 183 | Reviews: 124 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ZacMetalFan
4.75/5  rDev +25%

Photo of abrodsky
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of brendaniel
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%

Photo of erlenmeyer
2.5/5  rDev -34.2%

Photo of kevgod
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of zapahoppa
2/5  rDev -47.4%

Photo of kaelingirl
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of 11millsown113
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of jski
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of McLaughlin5350
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of beerbiatchMD
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a stemless wine glass.

a: Pours a dark brown, amber when held up to light. Off-white head is about one fingers worth. Minimal lacing.

s: Bready, doughy, sweet, brown sugar/syrupy.

t: Caramel earthy malts predominate. Small hint of EtOH at the end of palate.

m: Nice, smooth, not boozy.

o: A good beer overall. Not a huge Gritty's fan, but this one is pretty darn good. Would recommend.

Photo of ale207
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of leafs93
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of Chugs13
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Reviewed alongside Heavy Seas Winter Storm ("Category 5" Ale).

A: Clear red-brown with two-finger, off-white, creamy head that lasted a couple of minutes. Good lacing.

S: Sweet roasted malt and cherry.

T: Light sweetness and moderate hop bitterness. Rich roasted malt flavor that lasts through to the finish. Has a taste I can't quite place though.

M: Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Smooth and warm.

O: This is close to a tie. The Heavy Seas looked prettier and smelled nicer, but this beer had a comparable taste and a slightly better mouthfeel.

Photo of BeerResearcher
3.97/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle. Served in a SA Perfect Pint glass.
Pours a dark amber with a very fast-fading off-white head.
A smell of fruit cake leaps out at first pour. Smells of caramel malt, toffee, tea-like hops, plums and a whiff of rum follow.
A sweet fruity malt flavor carries tastes of citrus, tea, berries, edgy hops and white rum.
This is a very fluid, liquidy slip & sliding brew.
Highly drinkable, plus a good value.

Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +31.6%

Photo of LostHighway
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of beyah
3.96/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Deep reddish brown, lacing sticks to the side of the glass head does not hang around very long..

Smell - Buttery Malty with a trace of earthy English hops

Taste - The correct carbonation, mild earthy hop and diacetyl. Alcohol is not overbearing.

Mouthfeel - Slick smooth, not overly carbonated, a slight hint of alcohol and a little hops flavor left after the beer has past the tongue.

Overall - Really like this Gritty's offering now the hard part Halloween Ale or Christmas Ale? Better yet keep 6 of each on hand.

Photo of smakawhat
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on tap into a shaker pint at Buck Naked's BBQ Windham.

A very creamy and very cask like looking head, one finger presented with an off tan color. Body is a great red copper dark amber and clear with some noticeable rising carbonation. Lots of great sticky rings of lacing around. Great looking beer.

Nose is a slightly spicy malt, but mostly kind of "stinky" a little. Some ripping grain slightly husky, a mild cherry fruit sense. Kind of a strong nose, but one to enjoy.

Taste is sort of weird but good. Chewy malt body with a nice mild hop pine finish. Stinky malt is almost taffy like tasting in texture with some powder. Cherry fruit on the finish as well. Creamy head makes for a nice body.

Overall, pretty good. Marketed as a winter warmer but definitely feels ESB like mentioned here on BA. It all makes sense now and feels alright.

Photo of BeerKangaroo
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

In a pint glass:

A: chestnut/copper colored body, small white one finger head, lacing slid quickly into the body

S: sweet subdued caramel, slightly bready

T: pretty much the same, but coming through in a bland sort of way

M: medium, slightly sessionable, creamy aftertaste, sweet bready finish

O: average for the style, but acutally I liked it and went nicely with some Christmas cookies

Photo of nlincoln
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of patm1986
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of TK5150
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Pours dark amber (bordering on ruby) with a beige head.

S- Bread, Ringwood yeast, plums, light hints of roasted malt.

T- Sweet malt, sour cherry, plums, Ringwood yeast butter, nutty, lingering continental hop bitterness.

M- Medium bodied, sharp carbonation.

O- When I first started drinking beer, this was my favorite. While not a great beer, the sentimental value makes this one of my favorite beers for the holiday season nowadays.

Gritty McDuff's Christmas Ale from Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 183 ratings.