Holiday Spice Lager Beer - Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
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Ratings: 260 | Reviews: 138 | Display Reviews Only:
4.93/5 rDev +32.9%
Since this beer is brewed less than 2 miles from my house, I cant be anymore thankful for such a wonderful local creation. I really get excited each december for the seasonal beers that surface in local shops. I first tried this beer last winter and was floored with perfection of it. It is a very complex holiday brew with tons of different and fabulous flavors. It pours a burnt orange color with a small head on it. The nose of this beer is full of coriander, honey, and other spices, but it isnt overpowered by any one specific ingrediant. With each sip, the flavors just jump out at you. This review was sampled 12/7/03 from a bottle that was brewed the 2nd week of 12/02. The high abv is not noticed at all. I suggest to anyone that has the ability to get this beer; STOCKPILE if you have the room for it. It only gets better with storage. This is truly one of my favorite beers!
New Review....2004 Version
I got the first batch off the line and this year's may blow other years out of the water. Last year's weaker ABV is no longer present. This baby packs old school Holiday Spice punch. The Spices are blended masterfully and the aroma screams Winter! I have been waiting and it paid off! On Thanksgiving, sip this with a nice turkey dinner and give thanks that you are in Lakefront's distribution radius.
11-16-2004 22:39:22 | More by ALESwhatCURESya
4.9/5 rDev +32.1%
One of my favorite winter beers I've tried...I'd love to have a keg of this $hit on tap for the cold winter months....hard to believe this is close to 10%..thanks to BigHuge via Pieman for the bottle...
Aroma is awesome...strong strong spicy ciniman and nutmeg...The aroma is dang near perfect and I'm rating it that way...I could smell this b!tch all night long....
The taste isn't far behind..for a winter beer it is spectacular...make that for a spice beer it is spectacular...amazingly the spiciness does not overwhelm...there is a incredibly tasty bready malt base to go along with the excellent spicy flavor..
It poured a dark cloudy orange...feels nice in the mouth...not overly sweet or overloaded with spices...I rate drinkability very high as this may be my favorite winter of the year along with Winter solstice from Anderson Valley...
I've found Lakefront to be a bit of an odd brewery...their regular beers are solid but not worth jumping up and down over...but their hard to find seasonals like this...their Bee Line Barley Wine and their Big Easy Blonde Doppelbock are truly special...
I'd pay up to $20 for a sixer of this I love it so much...What I wouldn't do for a kegger of this on tap in my basement....2-or 3 a night would help me fight through these -25 below Northern Minnesota Winter nights...If you see this buy it and drink it...and hord it for the future...
01-28-2003 22:20:12 | More by ZAP
4.75/5 rDev +28%
This was a gift form upper Midwest relatives, when here at Christmastime, oh my Gawd, didn't know this was 11% until I opened this review page, might be a record for me (on second check it's #2 on my personal ABV). Well then, let's give it a whirl! Serving slightly chilled, not cold as this should bring out what this selection has to offer. Popping the top I get a big waft of cloves, allspice and cinnamon, not unlike a pumpkin pie. Pours into a tulip glass a deep root beer color with a medium bubble head that wisps away. On the taste, this brew start with a big syrup-thick mouthfeel, very high viscosity. The taste has an upfront spicyness just like the smell. The middle taste has some roasted malts, then the finish has a dry chocolate slight bitterness. All this while maintaining spice flavors through the whole taste. This is one holiday brew.To sit next to the fireplace or as a desert beer, I don't know how this brew could be beat. Outstanding.
01-08-2011 19:07:06 | More by mooseisloose
4.72/5 rDev +27.2%
Clear maroon color, small off-white, slightly red head. A very well spiced beer, lots of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves in the nose. Really doesn't smell or taste anything like your average beer of any style, that's what's great about the winter warmer, it's a style based on a goal, rather than ingredients or brewing style. Taste is dominated by mulling style spice flavors combined with alcohol to do exactly what the style suggests. Medium mouthfeel, with some alcohol burn. Good drinkability. A perfect beer for a cold winter's night.
12-29-2004 22:26:40 | More by TastyTaste
4.68/5 rDev +26.1%
Bought in Manhattan, KS but enjoyed at home in OKC.
Pours a dark coffee brown into the glass with a big fluffy tan head. Pleasant spicy aroma, but fairly subtle.
Flavor is rich and deep. Raisins, nutmeg, cloves, and hint of cinamin, lots of maltyness, tiny bit of lingering chocolate, maple syrup, caramel, tiny bit of orange, just a bit of black pepper and ginger. Very complex. Some nice balanced toastyness, but not too much. Very smooth. Maybe even a little bit of cream in the mix.
Mouthfeel is glorious. Perfectly smooth.
Long linger aftertaste. Alcohol is high but you can't taste it. Very well hidden. Dark chocolate and pepper is what lasts.
Overall, a very good beer.
07-26-2011 03:50:14 | More by jmbranum
4.65/5 rDev +25.3%
What a surprise...to find Lakefront's 2002 Holiday Spice on tap in northern Wisconsin was like finding a pearl in an oyster.
This specialty beer pours a dark peach with a pleasant frothy head forming and lingering throughout.
The aroma screams spices and malty sweetness. I detected, I think, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and perhaps cloves.... all balanced with an ever present honey and malt base.
The taste is very sweet, perhaps from the honey, but the spices and high alchohol, along with a generous hop presence blance this beer very well. A potent brew for the holday season.
I first sampled Lakefront's Holiday Spice back in 1993 or 1994 in a special tasting held in the old Riverwest brewery...since I moved, I have missed its yuletide presence every year...it is a great beer to go out of the way to purchase if you are ever in Milwaukee when the mercury drops below zero.
12-20-2002 18:04:02 | More by brakspear
4.47/5 rDev +20.5%
I started sipping away at this brew and felt inspired to review it. It wasn't until I saw the BA entry that I discovered it was 9.5% ABV. This is a sneaky beer.
A - I love the color. Fairly dark but a nice ruby hue. The head dissipated rather quickly but each time I raise the glass for a sip the resulting lacing was slick yet nice. There is a good circular presence of lacing/head around the glass throughout the entire drink.
S - Spices. And even most noticeably, licorice.
T - Spices and a subtle amount of licorice. I also sense a bit of apple in that initial sweet sip. This is what I expect a winter warmer to taste like.
M - It has a pleasant thickness to it. Carbonation feels good. My mouth is happy to pass this one on.
D - As I mentioned, this one is sneaky. It goes down super easy. Definitely the type of beer I'd like to have while I sit around the fire at the theoretical family lodge.
12-30-2008 01:56:05 | More by chakadrum
4.45/5 rDev +19.9%
Had this at a work Christmas party, now I'm on my second six pack. I'm not usually a fan of holiday beers/ spiced beers but I tried after a recommendation from a friend. For me this spiced beer hits it right on the head. It's not over the top but is very spice forward. I feel like all of the spice have their place on stage with this one. It's a little sweet but just what I'm looking for after trying all the messes of Christmas past. And at 11% this beer is crazy drinkable. I almost think it has to be a typo, haha.
12-13-2012 00:34:07 | More by Ohiovania
4.43/5 rDev +19.4%
Light brownish, burnt orangy yellow color thats quite clouded and has a strange glow from the bottom up with a medium ivory colored head from a vigorous pour, sits soft and thick but dwindles down somewhat fast; minimal stringed lace. Aroma is a whole lotta spice! Allspice, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, fly across the air and is very fresh and lovely into the nose, a light touch of dulled plum and sweet potato and toasty malts are in the back but are hard reaching due to the very spicy array this holiday keeper has. Taste is much more subdued then the smell gives way too, which is a good thing, I don't think I would like a glass of allspice, would you? But the spices are there but favorably mixed with a soft toasted Vienna-like maltyness with a slight sweetness underneath some of the allspice and ginger. Quite a nice semi-milding taste thats very pleasant and subtle. Good medium body feel and has a lingering spiced dryness for the finish. The 9.5% ABV surprised me, its no where to found if that is truely the ABV, no where. This was gone in no time and goes down super easy with a good little zip of spice. More please. Thanks jeffboo!!
12-09-2003 04:34:41 | More by tavernjef
4.43/5 rDev +19.4%
Pours a reddish brown sort of hue with a very long lasting white head which leaves nice lacing down the sides of my glass. A strong but not overpowering cinnamon/nutmeg aroma. A very smooth spicy malty flavor, ABV is very undetectable. An outstanding winter warmer.
02-01-2004 00:32:43 | More by jtw5877
4.4/5 rDev +18.6%
Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.
A strong pour yields a 1-finger tan head that fizzes and crackles away until all that is left is a thin dusting covering a blood clot-red body. Lacing is nearly non-existant.
The first thing noticed is bananas. They are ripe, ready for eating, and beckoning. A sweet maltiness, and some spices (nutmeg and clove, specifically) are also noticed. Which is rather odd as I can normally pick up cinnamon.
Dark and sweet malt flavors hug your taste buds leaving little (but some) room for the spices. Clove and cinnamon are quick to join the party but fall into the shadow of a long-lasting banana note. Odd though it may be in a dark lager, I really enjoy the banana as it plays quite nicely with the spices and sweet malt.
Thick and full bodied, this beer hits your mouth hard. Sticky and somewhat syrupy, it coats your mouth very well, but decent carbonation helps to prevent this brew from being too sticky.
The 11% ABV is completely masked and is nearly undetectable. The thick mouthfeel makes this a definite sipper but the excellent flavors and smells keep me wanting more. This will definitely be in my glass next Christmas morning.
03-29-2011 06:57:05 | More by output01x
4.4/5 rDev +18.6%
I had to drink this one out of the bottle, but it still was one of my favorites of the night. Aroma was mostly of spices with cinnamon dominating. Flavor was of cinnamon, orange, hops, and some alcohol. A good holiday beer to make the conversations with relatives a bit more lively.
12-25-2002 17:30:50 | More by ethosx19
4.4/5 rDev +18.6%
Dark brown with plum colored highlights, got 1 finger head out of an aggressive pour and thick, creamy lacing afterwards. Carbonation appears moderate.
In the nose I get pumpkin pie spice, or the collection of spices in pumpkin pie spice rather, a little warm alcohol, vanilla, banana, clove and a slight roast aroma.
This tastes like a mix between bananas foster and creme brulee to me. I barely taste the alcohol at all and I am hard pressed to believe this is 11%. Spices are blended well with the big malt profile, which I would assume left plenty of extra maltose in this brew, and some Noble hops. Almost belgiany in character and my theory is that the spices imitate the by products of belgian yeast pretty well.
Perfectly chewy for this type of beer with enough carbonation to keep it from getting syrupy.
This beer is pretty good. I couldn't drink too many as the high alcohol is getting to me already. I compare this to Anchor's Christmas ale which in my opinion has a better appearance, a richer, more unique aroma and taste as well as a silkier mouthfeel, but that's it. I like this one better than all the rest of the winter warmers I have had this year next to Anchor's.
01-04-2011 04:16:57 | More by tapman
4.38/5 rDev +18.1%
Pours a light brown with an orange hue. Medium head is white. Generous nose - holiday spice indeed....ginger, cinammon, and the orange mentioned on the lable. Christmas spices in a bottle.
Nice velvety mouthfeel. Smooth, but full of flavor. Great balance between the spices and rich malts. The hop bill seems turned up on this years version. Alcohol warmth is also present.
A significant amount of ginger, but not overpowering.
Great beer for holiday parties or just by a warm fire.
Lakefront has always produced a fine beer with this style, this year it is hoppier, a little less spicy - but still well spiced - and significantly higher in alcohol.
A fantastic holiday beer.
02-27-2005 02:50:51 | More by sweethome
4.38/5 rDev +18.1%
12oz bottle poured into a Brewers pint glass
Appearance- A mahogany color with tiny white bubbly head have widdles down to a cloud like layer.
Smell- Lots going on here. Reminds me of Christmas in September since that is when I'm drinking it. Nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, all spice are heavy in the nostrils.
Taste- Pretty much a heavily spiced lager with a slight char flavor on the back side. Spices include clove, all spice, cinnamon. Also nice tiny booze taste on the back.
Mouthfeel- Medium body, but would prefer it to be a little lighter without going watery.
Overall- A beautifully spiced lager that smells out of this world and tastes very nice. The very well hidden abv doesn't hurt either.
09-08-2012 16:24:46 | More by BrownAleMale
4.33/5 rDev +16.7%
Poured into a pint glass.
3.0 A: Lightly hazed dark orange amber color. Just half a finger of frothy beige head that fell quickly, leaving no lacing.
4.0 S: Very nice mix of spices. Nutmeg stands out the most, followed by cinnamon and honey. Clove adds that extra something to really make this a great spice blend. Orange is somewhere underneath. Malts give a pleasant caramel aromas. Quite clean overall.
4.5 T: I didn't expect a lot from a brewery that I've never heard of, but it appears that this is a sleeper. I have to say this is the best winter warmer I've had this year. Spices follow the nose and as an added bonus, the cinnamon isn't strong enough to add that goofy flavor that cinnamon tends to add. Caramel maltiness with a slight graininess. Again, quite clean allowing the malts and spices to do their thing.
4.5 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Very creamy given the body. Super smooth.
4.5 D: I'm going to have to look for this next year. I only wish I drank this a few weeks ago when I first bought it so I could buy some more. Very good example of the style.
01-03-2012 21:58:37 | More by DavoleBomb
Holiday Spice Lager Beer from Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
84 out of 100 based on 260 ratings.