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Pickled Santa - Ridgeway Brewing

Not Rated.
Pickled SantaPickled Santa

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

115 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 115
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 3.29
pDev: 18.54%
Wants: 1
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ridgeway Brewing visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: scottoale on 11-04-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 115 | Reviews: 76 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by WastingFreetime:
Photo of WastingFreetime
2.43/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours out an orangish-amber color with good clarity but only a single finger of off-white head that fizzles out to nothing in less than 30 seconds, no lacing at all on the inside of the glass. Lighter side of medium body thickness and carbonation levels.

Smells mostly like nutmeg and werther's original candies, with lighter amounts of cinnamon and cardamom aromas floating around the edges of the biscuit / caramel malt aromas. Taste is VERY much buttery, so very buttery that it becomes a bit of an issue for my tastebuds unfortunately. If I concentrate really hard, I can try to ignore the buttery flavors and find the spicing from the nose in my mouth, but it just really doesn't work out for me in the end. Way too much diacetyl ruins it for me, I'm left with the gustatory impression of a stick of butter that has been rolled around in a crushed holiday spice blend. If only there were more malt relative to the butter content, this one could have been tolerable for me.

WastingFreetime, Sep 08, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of Mora2000
3/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours a yellow color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the flowers with some wheat, grain and grass notes. I also get a little bit of cinnamon in the aroma, which is unexpected. The flavor is a mix of cinnamon, biscuits and bread. Fairly basic and one dimensional, but not too offensive. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Better than I remember some of the other Ridgeway Christmas beers being.

Mora2000, Jan 11, 2011
Photo of bsp77
3.18/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Imperial Pint.

Appearance: Light copper with thin white head and not much lacing.

Smell: Spicy, floral English hops, some light dry malt backing.

Taste: Biscuit and dry caramel malts with a lot of spicy and floral notes on top. Maybe some of that is from the spices but mostly seems like English hops. Fairly medicinal.

Feel: Moderately high carbonation, medium body, very dry but oddly tingly finish.

Overall: Seems more like an English Ale gone somewhat awry, as opposed to being spiced. Still drinkable, but nothing special.

bsp77, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of chinchill
3.35/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Portion of a 22oz bottle served in a pint glass.

Pours a clear amber with a bone colored head that has acceptable retention. The large head does reduce rather quickly.

A spicy and modestly malty aroma with hints of an ABV higher than the actual 6%. Plenty (perhaps too much) of spice in the long lasting aftertaste. Finish is slightly dry and mildly bitter.

O: not a great holiday brew, but drinkable, and with the cute label and name, capable of fostering holiday spirit.

chinchill, Mar 15, 2012
Photo of glid02
3.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours a clear dark copper color with a one-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of light caramel malts with moderate amounts of earthy hops and a good amount of indistinct medium fruit flavors.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Good amounts of caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by mild amounts of green apple and pear flavors. Midway through the sip earthy hop flavors work their way into things and carry through to a moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is OK. It's a bit on the thin side but with nice carbonation.

Drinkability is alright. I finished my glass without any problems however I'm not sure about another.

Overall this has the potential to be a good beer but the fruit flavors seem out of place and the rest of the flavors are lacking a crispness needed for the style. Not worth seeking out but not worth turning down either.

glid02, Aug 01, 2010
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a nonic)
A- This beer has a clear but slightly dense bright copper body with a strong carbonation of big bubbles and an off-white head that is porous with lots of big bubbles.
S- The dry almost salty spiced pale malt has a slight toasted malt note underneath. There is a dry cider aroma that finishes with a buttery quality.
T- The pale malt flavor has a faint toasted note and some dried apple flavors to follow. There is a corn flavor to the bitter finish and a soft caramel quality that lingers. When this beer is pretty warm there is a hint of stale cinnamon in the malt.
M- The medium mouthfeel has a slight slippery texture and a soft fizz note with no alcohol heat in the finish.
D- This beer starts of very bitter in the finish and it is more spice that hop bitterness, but it opens up more flavors come through and the bitterness subsides. There were some ok flavors but nothing really exciting it was just sort of bland.

rhoadsrage, Jan 05, 2011
Photo of jbphoto88
2.65/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The color of a genetically spliced citrus fruit, perhaps tangelo or orangerine? The head is weak and collects on the sides of the glass. Nothing lackluster just a regular looking beer.

Smell is on the thin side. Almost like a small Christmas candle that's been lit in a room to big. Chalky, sweet cinnamon wafts up but it's dull and expired as is a powdered malt bill.

Taste is kind of the same. Musty nutmeg flavor that goes back and forth between an eggnog taste and too big a breath of someone's clove cigarette. There is a hint of lemony promise only to be veiled by mediocrity. Very thinned stuffy malts in an all around to weak a body.

Dry finish, kind of powdery. All and all not impressed. It's a dull beer that has a touch of goodness but it doesn't last. I have yet to find a decent winter warmer.

jbphoto88, Apr 09, 2009
Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.75/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a fading top re to yellow bottom with thick bubble off white ahead, two fingers atop...

Smells of orange cinnamon, some sour yeast and light hops

Caramel and brown sugar some spicy pepper and pumpkin behind the sweetness. The sweetness seems to be carried by something similar to belgian candy

Medium body with a sticky ending and some warmth from the alcohol even though it is only six percent

Overall I had no big expectations for an english ale. I like big bang flavors and England usually delivers on the smoother side. However this took me by huge surprise as a fantastic bold palate. Spicy refreshing and sweet.

JoeAmerican77, May 26, 2011
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.9/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pickled Santa pours a mostly clear deep-amber body with gold and orange highlights beneath a creamy cap of white that settles steadily to a short, cottony surface covering. Lacing is average.

The aroma expresses dark skinned fruit, very gently caramelish malt, and dull spice (cinnamon, and perhaps anise).

The flavor is far more pronounced than the nose suggests, and it's decidedly spicy from the get-go through to the lingering finish (I don't think it's really over-done though). It starts with a dollop of round, sweet malt that's wrapped in yeasty fruitiness (some cherry) and sprinkled with spice (thin but brittle coriander and supple cinnamon). The fruitiness peaks across the middle, but then it's right back to the spice at the swallow as the malt starts to fade and the spices are left behind. A firm, underlying bitterness balances it, and it's just enough as the spices do their part to help out as well. As the spices fade I get notes of all-spice and nutmeg, and even cola (although that is probably just from the spices combined with whatever residual caramel-tinged malt is there).

Final swigs: a pretty decent spiced ale that's not over-done. It's certainly enjoyable through one serving, but as is the case with most spiced ales, I don't think it can hold up through a second - maybe - but certainly not a third. However, it may have its moments. I think it would pair well with a festive meal. Certainly worth trying.

NeroFiddled, Aug 16, 2009
Photo of ImusBeer
3.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a yellow amber with an off white head move than two fingers died to light covering quickly, beer was clear.

Smell of coriandor spice and cinnamon. Taste mimiced the aromas and no bitterness to speak of.

The mouth was light and spicy but not in a heavy way. A nice Christmasy beer not too high grav and enjoyable without being over the top.

ImusBeer, Jan 20, 2010
Photo of cliff1066
3.25/5  rDev -1.2%

cliff1066, Jan 12, 2013
Photo of Larrydoherty
3/5  rDev -8.8%

Larrydoherty, Dec 02, 2012
Photo of astidad
3.75/5  rDev +14%

astidad, Dec 20, 2012
Photo of russpowell
3.85/5  rDev +17%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent honey color with 3 fingers of sand colored head. Zero head retention & lacing

S: Biscuitty malt & grassy hops

T: Biscuitty malt dryness & a very dare I say west coast hop slant, grapefruit & lemony hops all over the the throat & tongue. maybe a whisper of spices too. Made for the Shelton Bros, this may explain a few things... As this warms, I pick up a bit more of the spice profile, especially coriander, but grapefruit & dryness dominate, along with a a faint bit of orchard fruit. Finishes fruitty & hoppy with faint dryness

MF: Medium bodied, moderate carbonation & nice balance

Drinks pretty darn easy, abv is well hidden. I would pick this up again, pretty tasty, not a typical winter warmer, but interesting enough

Scanning all prior reviews, I am the only one picking up on the grapefruit, not sure what that means...

russpowell, Nov 19, 2009
Photo of JamLand
3.25/5  rDev -1.2%

JamLand, Jul 01, 2013
Photo of tone77
3.9/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 16.9 oz. bottle. Has a copper color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is strong of spices. Taste also has considerable spice, nutmeg and cardamon standing out, a touch of hop bitterness. Feels full bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a very good brew.

tone77, Feb 14, 2011
Photo of puboflyons
3.23/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

From the bottle marked F15-282. Sampled on January 16, 2014.

It has a copper-orange pour with decent clarity and a head that whisks away as quickly as it forms.

It smells distinctively English with the roasted caramel malts and a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg along with a pear-like character.

Thin to medium body.

The taste is fairly sweet and caramel like but it is not anything I have not had before. Slightly bitter ending.

puboflyons, Jan 16, 2014
Photo of beerthulhu
3.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Poured a weak, watery orange, despite the labels claim that it is a ruddy chestnut color. The clarity was bright with a high visibility while the capping was frothy, short lived and light beige in color leaving a respectable thick, clumpy lacing around the rim. Visible carbonation was rapid, with a dense showering of macro-bubbles rising at a rapid rate.

S: The nose was sweet with hints of dried caramel grains, semi-dry oranges and a light helping of cinnamon sprinkled applesauce. A medium sense of strength gives you a good dose and appreciation. There was a light scent of freshly buttered croissant as well.

T: The flavor had a fruity sweetness of dried caramel grains, and cinnamon sprinkled applesauce similar to the nose. A fruitiness of melons, coriander and nutmeg also are well noted as well a light fresh biscuity nature. There is a flowery bitterness with a touch of sweet, dried maple syrup as well. The finish finds a combination of orange grinds, apples, pears and a dry spicing of nutmeg. After the swallow there is a light alcohol warming that ensures.

M: The mouthful had a nice medium-full syrupy thickness. Soft on the tongue carbonation wise with a light dry spicing coats the tongue.

D: average. A sweet exams drink with a soft complimentary spicing but not one I would want to drink in multiples. The label claims this can be drunk either chilled or at ambient temperature depending on your palate. I chose the latter like a good English ale should be consumed to bring out the warmth of holiday spicings.

beerthulhu, Dec 28, 2009
Photo of bluejacket74
3.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500 ml bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours a clear amber/orange color with about an inch off-white head that stayed around for a little while. There's a small amount of lacing. Aroma is nice but light, it smells like nutmeg, cinnamon, coriander, and some bready malt. It tastes like bready malt, nutmeg, cinnamon, and some apples. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's smooth and has low/moderate carbonation. I think it's an OK brew, but I probably wouldn't buy it again at $4.99 a bottle. Just seems average overall to me.

bluejacket74, Dec 30, 2012
Photo of goldbot
2.5/5  rDev -24%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours clear, medium copper with moderate active carbonation. Very thin, off-white head that dissipates almost instantly. Malty aroma with notes of caramel, bread, raisin and cherry. A slight earthiness hints at the addition of spices. Floral hops brighten the aroma up a bit. The flavor is a heavy, bready malt, on the bitter side and with medium body. No spice or hops notes that I detect. Really, it just plain doesn't taste that great.

goldbot, Jan 05, 2012
Photo of Dukeofearl
3.23/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Purchased at bevMo for about $4.99 (a guess) in December 2009; tasted in January 2010.

Pours a moderate caramel amber, clear as a bell, with little to no head, but there is a steady stream (really, more of a trickle) of internal carbonation rising up to form a thin cover of bubbles.

Aroma is very faint, a little grassy organics and a hint of spiciness. Gets better when tasted- the caramel, nutmeg and clove and almost banana flavors appear in the malt-dominated brew. Almost heading to being too sweet, but fortunately it stops before it gets there. No hop bitterness to speak of.

Overall a drinakble beer, not bad, but not anything to get excited about either.

Dukeofearl, Jan 17, 2010
Photo of theopholis
2.8/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Clear, golden body; the color of old honey. The head is not impressive, and has no staying power.

Smell: Slightly sour with a lot of spices such as allspice, clove, and nutmeg.

Taste: Shall we say....quite Christmansy. Failry malty. Slightly Burtonized. A little overspiced,

Mouthfeel: Thin. Decent attempt at carbonation.

Overall: Average. Great smell, disappointing taste.

theopholis, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of JohnGalt1
3.1/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

17oz bottle picked up at the Coop over the holidays.. sharing it with the bro.. my half into my New Belgium snifter...

2" head.. pillowy and leaving behind a ton of lace.. the brew is a glowing tangerine... pretty.

the nose is spicy.. sorta like a Belgian or German hefe yeast was used.. but more likely xmas spices are present.. clove and subtle orange peel.

Flavor is toasted malts mainly with spices throughout.. nutmeg is also present on the palate.. body is medium with quite a bit of carbonation.. not bad by any means.. it just seems waaay to average and the spices are probably a bit much.

overall.. I am not down with this one... I wanted to elaborate more.. but the brother is bitching and saying get off the complectron..

JohnGalt1, Jan 29, 2009
Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
3.7/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz bottle poured into a wine glass. A re-gift to me, the last of the re-gifting chain I suppose. ("I'LL put an end to this!") The bottle says 'English Xmas Ale...bottle conditioned...product of UK.' The batch number is F11 244. Not sure what to expect here with this goofy (and not exactly intuitive) name and label design...

A: A 1 finger, frothy, off-white head sits atop a clear, sparkling medium orange-brown body. Ruby lines the edge of my glass. I was pleased and surprised with the clarity of this bottle-conditioned brew.

S: The malts are closing in on heavy. Caramel, cookie and toffee - all toasted. The hops were light and not much to speak of other than they added a floral bouquet.

T: Spicey. And a pretty nice blend at that. I get allspice, nutmeg & chai. Other herbal tea character, some sweetness from honey, light brown sugar and maple syrup, and an appropriate oaky woodiness. A bit of warmth from the alcohol comes through as well.

M: The medium body was a bit thin and the carbonation was not soft but below average.

D: Well, my expectations were exceeded. This beer proved to be better than my 'judging a book by it's cover' notions and for that I am thankful. And thank you mom for the re-gift!

FeDUBBELFIST, Jan 03, 2010
Photo of FreshmanPour77
4/5  rDev +21.6%

FreshmanPour77, Nov 30, 2011
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Pickled Santa from Ridgeway Brewing
76 out of 100 based on 115 ratings.