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Holiday Spice Lager Beer - Lakefront Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Holiday Spice Lager BeerHoliday Spice Lager Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

142 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 142
Hads: 299
Avg: 3.76
pDev: 16.49%
Wants: 12
Gots: 24 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lakefront Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-03-2002

Spice beer brewed with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, orange peel, and clover honey.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 142 | Hads: 299
Photo of WVbeergeek
1.48/5  rDev -60.6%
look: 1 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

The website states that this beer weighs in at 11% abv it's hard to believe that one. All I get fron the nose is holiday spices with a bit of honey sweetness, dark fruits. Mind numbing spices including cinnamon, ginger, allspice etc. Hints of vanilla and clove dance around as well there was a thread about some guy talking about how he was able to finish a whole six pack of this beer and he called it the Holiday Spice six pack challenge now that's what I call the Biggest Loser. Cloyingly sweet honey tones coats the palate with this shite, what a mess of a beer. Dark syrup with spice infused layers some orange peeel and honey with holiday spices. I can't finish this is pure shit. Mouthfeel is like lighter fluid with spice and booze burn as it warms. Drinkability sucks and I can't make it any more intricate than that.

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Photo of ch473
1.6/5  rDev -57.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

This beer pours a cloudy burnt sienna with cream colored foam. An unusual looking beer, but inviting.

Smell consists of banana, clove and brown sugar. The scent does make me want to drink it. Smells very sweet, but I don't pick up much of the added flavors like clove and cinnamon. Maybe a bit of nutmeg.

The taste is terrible; I taste metal (like a penny) and cherry cough syrup. I can barely finish this one. The lackluster aroma was much better than the flavor. I don't even get a hint of the 11% alcohol content because it's completely covered by the cloying sweetness.

No way I would drink another one of these, I can barely finish one. The sweetness is overwhelming. I could never drink this to complement any food. It reminds me of overly sweet, cheap whiskey. It's not enjoyable to drink; I found it hard to get down. I don't often give bad reviews but this beer is nearly undrinkable.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
1.71/5  rDev -54.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a bomber to a pint glass the liquid is dark copper with OK carbonation. The head is small tan and leaves no lace.

The smell is a overly spiced malt, Hops are hard to get.

The taste is gross, like spooning pumpkin spice. Just nasty.

The mouthfeel is, yuck just can't get that taste out of my mouth, body ok, carbonation, ok. Yuck.

Drinkability... NOT

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Photo of Pauly2X
2.37/5  rDev -37%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A- Cloudy deep amber color, half finger head faded fast to a wisp.

S- Strong smell of cloves, followed by lighter honey aromas. Hmm Ham anyone?

T- A dance of sweet caramel malts being drowned out by cloves, hops are forced into hiding.

M- Smooth moderate carbonation.

D- No thanks, I'm good with one.

I think this beer would be much better if the spices were toned down to work with the malt and hops, rather than trying to bully them out.

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Photo of geexploitation
2.43/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a very dark brown, with reddish edges and a black center. Very little head. Big spice aromas first off -- nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice -- and something that reminds me of diacetyl that I can't put my finger on. The spice smells get in the way of the malt smells, which show through with only the faintest glimmer. On the palate, huge, bludgeoning sweetness hits at first... though you become habituated to it with time. Cloying spicyness melds with the sweetness, yielding something like spiced eggnog mixed with a can of One Pie. Not too appetizing. Thick mouthfeel, relatively mild carbonation. With this and many other winter warmers, I keep thinking of the word "restraint!". As in, the brewers should use some. Too much spice, too much sweetness, nothing subtle or balanced here.

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Photo of aaronbeach69
2.63/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

appearance: good appearance nothing amazing, a cloudy hazelnut brown, off white yellow/creme with decent lace

smell: this is the most definitive part of this "spice" lager... sooo much spice... oh wow... where to start cinnamon... almost egg noggish.. bananas... peanut butter cookies.. .they stuffed christmas dinner in the bottle... and it's too much for me to handle

taste: the smell seeps into the taste, wtih any beer tastes being completely muffled by the strong alchohol and the much stronger spices..

mouthfeel: mouthfeel?? no mouthfeel, becuase all nerved in my mouth were rendered useless by the spices and alchohol

drinkability: well after the first few you just can't taste or anything so then it's OK but in real respect this beer is just not drinkable at all

notes: sorry for saying such things about a beer respected by others.. maybe I got a bad pack but I struggled through these beers honestly, I just couldn't handle the smell, if others can I could see them really enjoying this around chrsitmas.. maybe mix it with egg nog or something .. but I cant' handle it

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Photo of beerthulhu
2.64/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

A: Coppery exit from the bottle turns a deep christmas burgundy in the glass with a dark tan head that is skimpy, washy, and quick to dissipate. Large collection of macro-bubbles stick to the glass walls.

S: Cinnamon, cold cola, and nutmeg are very soft, low key with no real contributer stepping up.

T: Flavor was spicy, with some cinnamon-nutmeg, toasted caraemel sweetness and a hint of clove and toffee. Cypress and some saffron are also evident. The spicing is heavy handed, perhaps a bit to much so. The flavor is sickening sweet, with some dry cherry coughsyrup and a touch of pine-scotch alcohol coming there-after.

M: sticky, bubbly on the tongue with a medium bodied with some alcohol warmth.

O: Overall a bit unbearing sweet and over-spiced and one that didn't sit well with me. A hot mesh of spicy sweetness, unbalanced, a hard one to consume and not one that i will miss next holiday season.

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Photo of mikereaser
2.64/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours a nice chestnut brown with about a 1/4 inch of off white foam that quickly disappeared and left only a ring of fine bubble around the glass

S - strong smell of spices that almost smell chemical, sort of funkiness to it that just doesn't seem right for this one

T - licorice, hints of alcohol, and spiciness.

M/D - A little bit too fake spice for me. I like winter beers, but this one just seems a little bit over the top and reduces its drinkability to just one and probably not again.

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Photo of WJVII
2.7/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass this brew has a deep orange, red tint color, with a off white head that leaves minimal lacing and doesn't last long. The aroma is extremely strong with orange, spice, honey, and clove very present. The taste is very over powering with spice notes. This is just not my style. It is hard to say if this represents the style b/c it is not a usual brew for my taste. It seems to stand for what it is and I respect that.

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Photo of jeffmonarch
2.79/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Dark semi cloudy red/brown. Tan head that thins out quickly.

S - Lots of spices, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves.

T - Taste them all. Ok flavor. There's too much going on here.

M - Too overpowering and too much going on. Slight after taste that lingers.

D - Not great. This beer smells great and looks good but the flavor is so confusing for you tastebuds. One or two strong flavors with a bunch of supporting spices is ok but this has a ton of all of the spices. It's too much.

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Photo of tigg924
3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, clear, reddish brown in color, high carbonation

Smell: cinnamon, clove, and citrus

Taste: toasted malt, cinnamon, clove, brown sugar, and citrus

Mouthfeel: sweet start with slightly bitter end, medium bodied, medium/low carbonation

Drinkability: An average winter warmer that is at minimum slightly overspiced. I have had way better this holiday season. Not a bad beer, but nothing I would search for again.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Lakefront- Holiday Spice Lager

A- Hazy red/ brown with a small light lacing head.
S- Sugary sweet candy and malt. Slight touch of cherries and cinnimon.
T- Super sweet sugary cherry, with hints of caramel, cinnimon, grape, and orange.
M- Varying between sweet and sour. Very fruity, barely any spices other than dry cinnimon noted. Fruity tartness dominates.

Overall- Too tart and fruity sour.

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Photo of cyraxx
3.01/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This ones been sitting around for a while, so I finally got to it...
12oz bottle poured into my Mad Elf snifter:

A - Best part of the beer. Pretty chestnut/ruby color with a bit of eggshell foam that lingers.

S - Blast of artificial cinnamon with most other spices faded and a bit of caramel malt aroma.

T - Sweet up front with the cinnamon from the nose which then moves into a decently sour flavor, which I am assuming is not intended and out of place. Pretty odd, and isn't terribly lager like. The flavors are pretty muddy and not clean.

M - Decent mouthfeel with decent prickly carbonation on the tongue.

D - Drinkability is fairly high considering the ABV, but the tasted kind of knocks it down for me, personally.

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Photo of KarlHungus
3.05/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer pours a cloudy brown color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into nice lacing. The aroma is of vibrant cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, with a firm malt backbone. The taste is even more spicy than the aroma, and I'm not sure that is a good thing. I really like the aroma, but the taste is just too much. The mouthfeel is full bodied with lively carbonation, and a smooth texture. Overall, this would be a really good beer if it were a bit mellower. As is I don't think I'll be drinking this again.

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Photo of iasanlee
3.07/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy honey amber with quickly dissipating off-white head.

Aroma of cherries?!? and potpourri like spices. A light earthy hop note detected.

Somewhat of a mess of ginger, sweetness, nutmeg, toffee, sweetness, clove, and sweetness. Bitterness is moderate, but the beer finishes incredibly cloying.

Medium-full in body with smooth moderate carbonation. Alcohol warmth is considerably low for the ABV, a plus.

The spice joined with the cloying sweetness dominates the palate. If the unfermentable sugars and spice additions were cut back, this could be a nice beer in my opinion. I have a hard time believing the ABV, but if it is true, it is VERY well hidden...maybe behind that extra ginger they threw in.

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Photo of Risser09
3.11/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a snifter - Fridge temp - 2008

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with a slight garnet highlight. The head goes up to 1/2" and is ivory in color. Okay retention and zero lacing.

Smell: Spicy yeast. Clove, orange, funky farmhouse and cinnamon. This lager smells like it was infected with brett. Awesome!

Taste: Smooth lager flavor has a spicy bite. Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and many others are kind of cloying. Slight citrus and a lager yeastiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with lots of carbonation. Yeastiness and spiciness create a cloying distraction to what could be a better beer. Over-spiced, IMHO. Alcohol is noticeable.

Drinkability: Not good. Too spicy for me. All these winter type beers are very spicy. Not for me.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
3.2/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a balloon glass.

The beer is a really dark mahogany with ruby hues. A cream colored head recedes to a light wisp, little or no lacing.

The aroma is a blend of ginger, faint orange peel, brown sugar, and some booziness from the 9.4% ABV.

The taste spicy cinnamon, ginger, and again, some booziness.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall, not that complex. The high ABV helped keep this beer from a lower score.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.22/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a caramel brown color with a cap of foam that dwindles to a wisp. The aroma is bursting with nutmeg and clove and orange. This a very flavorful brew. Malty, but mostly fruity and sweet, perhaps a bit too much. The fruity sweetness plows through the center and finishes with sweetness and a dash of spice. The chest fills with warmness after a few sips. A big beer for the holiday season. The large ABV makes me wish I would have saved it for when the in-laws come over.

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Photo of tjkurz
3.22/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Deep amber/brown smells of cider/cloves spice. Tastes pretty much as it smells - a little stong on the back of the pallet finishes dry and spicey. Well carbed not great mouthfeel. Drinkability okay, I guess would tire on you after more than one or two.

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3.28/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle slowly into 8oz tasting chalice.
A: A dark and hazy body of deep amber. The head sinks quick, but holds a bit around the edges. Lacing is very little at that.
S: The aroma shows a very strong use of spice in this brew. A roasted malt character, but the presence.
T/M: The front is a big blast of spice with a full warming mouthfeel. The caramel presence is nice and creamy, while the use of the nutmeg was a bit harsh and over used. Nice balance of roasted malt and barley, on the overall taste. This brew is a bit over spiced and there is a reason, seeing that the 11% abv is very well hidden.
D: This is a nice brew to try in the winter months, one that I would get a six pack of and save some for years to come. A nice warmer for sure.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.32/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours as a deep amber color with a nice white head on top that doesn't leave much in way of lacing. The aroma is heavily spiced to the point where it almost doesn't really have aberration aroma. The taste was pretty strong, found that this beer goes well with food because the spices are really powerful in this brew. The mouthfeel was a little thick and very warming. Not a terrible brew, I'd drink it again.

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Photo of blackie
3.33/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance: The pour into my pint creates a big, fizzy light tan head that gradually recedes. There is some yeast on the bottom, which I didn't expect from a lager. The beer is a hazy orange-amber color.

smell: Decent malt/hop balance, I think (the hops are hard to pick out). Aromas of nondescript holiday spice, winey cider, overripe orange, and a moderate sweetness.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is between medium and high. The body is on the lighter end of the medium range.

taste: Pretty messy mix of flavors, with no real standout characters. There's a cidery appleiness, spice, yeast, malt. There is a general off flavor that is above all others. Lightly sweet with a bitterness that throws things out of balance.

drinkability: The high carbonation and general average quality of this beer limits drinkability. It seems as though a nice beer is hiding in there, though...the cidery character is what really throws it, I think.

dirtylou saved a bottle of this for me to bring back from my trip to Madison

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.35/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a dark red/brown color. The head is at least two inches. It leaves a spot of lace around the glass after settling. The aroma is quite spicy. I also smell fruity hints. A kiss of hops is present as well. The flavor is cinnamon all the way. A bit of clove and a definite alcohol flavor bites on the backend. This beer feels substantial. Which it should since it's a winter warmer. I've spent a few christmas get togethers sippin on this beer. I will most likely be pickin it up again this year.

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Photo of BeerBelcher
3.35/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Some brewers make "big" beers with over-powering hop, others with tons of maltiness; this beer overpowers you with spice. I might describe this as a "Yule Tide," but a tide that would pull you out to sea with its overabundance of spiciness. It is probably the spiciest beer I've had and I'm having a really hard deciding whether or not I liked it.

This beer poured a dirty, hazy-brown with some head. Aroma was very powerful spiciness; I caught nutmeg and my wife identified cinammon and we both were reminded of pumpkin pie.

Taste was an alcohol-spice infusion. It was novel and a bit punishing at the same time. Mouthfeel was thick, and combined with all the spice, I would not say this beer is very drinkable; yet it is very festive.

I would recommend you it, based purely on its polarizing nature.

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Photo of sweemzander
3.42/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. Bottled week 1, Dec. 2009. Thanks to BeerFMAndy for the bottle.

(A)- Pours a clear brown amber color that produced an immediately dissipating off-white head.

(S)- A maltiness of vanilla & brown sugar with bits of ginger and cranberry.

(T)- Same as the smell only with a much spicier ginger presence.

(M)- A good carbonation level & balance. A good maltiness & spice.

(D)- A good beer that I enjoyed, but much more fitting for the holiday season for sure. Good stuff.

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Holiday Spice Lager Beer from Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
85 out of 100 based on 142 ratings.