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Pickled Santa - Ridgeway Brewing

Not Rated.
Pickled SantaPickled Santa

Educational use only; do not reuse.

78 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 78
Hads: 122
Avg: 3.3
pDev: 22.42%
Wants: 0
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ridgeway Brewing visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: scottoale on 11-04-2008

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (29) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 78 | Hads: 122
Photo of scoobybrew
4.1/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was poured from the bottle into a pint glass.

A - clear deep copper color with a nice head that settles into a chunky lacing

S - seasonal spices out front with a hint of malt sweetness

T - rich malt with a touch of toasted character and prominent, but not overpowering, and of course there some hops in there as well; finishes slightly sweet

M - medium body, moderate carbonation

D - This is a nicely done Christmas/seasonal beer. The spices, malt and hops are all within balance and noticeable. It's complex, but not complicated.

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Photo of scottoale
3.95/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This came in a seasonal four-pack of Ridgeway brews from Cost Plus. The brown 500ml. bottle pours a deep copper with an off-white head of a finger. 6% ABV.

The smell is sweet and malty with a dose of spices. The taste is the same with apple, plum, grapes and a bit of citric hops. The addition of the spices pull through with notes of nutmeg, allspice, clove, cinnamon and a dash of corriander that bring the finish to a bitter spiciness. Alcohol is masked quite well.

Medium body with a bit of tartness on the tongue, overall it's a pretty tasty seasonal that suits the holidays.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.95/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a three finger cream head that fades slowly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Clear amber color. Slight spicy nose. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Flavor is light cinnamon and nutmeg, a not overpowering decent Christmas ale. Brewed for Shelton Brothers Importers for exclusive distribution in the U.S. $6.40 for a 500ml bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.

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Photo of tone77
3.9/5  rDev +18.2%
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.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.88/5  rDev +17.6%
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.

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Photo of chefhatt
3.88/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

when i poured this one into a pint glass, it has a nice light orange body with a nice creamy white head that hangs around for a little bit. The smell has a sweet aroma to it, with some spice, i sense cinnamon. The taste is a little malty but then the hops come in with a hint of spice(cinnamon and some nutmeg) The mouthfeel is good and crisp and overall this beer is a above average beer.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.87/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up at Coit Liquors about three weeks ago, and now it's going to be consumed. On to the beer:

Cough syrup orange in color with hues going into yellow. The head on top is solid, developing a little bit of gentle lace that sticks. The nose is distinctly English, or at least the soft, buttery, somewhat sweet yeast that arises from the beer.

Although the bottle says that it is a winter warmer style, the taste is telling me a different story. Don't worry, this is still a likable flavor. Buttersctoch, a little diacetyl and husk, also a subtle flavor of esters and vague spice. The package as a whole gets better and better tasting as the beer moves closer towards the bottom of the glass. The carbonation is low in this beer, the texture being soft and medium bodied. While I like the overall package, I would need to be in the mood for something like this, and I would take my time drinking it.

Pickled Santa isn't just for the winter time; it's well into the spring season and all is good around here. I'm already dreaming of a helping of Spotted Dick as I finish my pint.

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Photo of wangbruins
3.85/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Light copper/caramel color with a decently thick head that stayed until I started drinking

S- Cinnamon, paprika, nutmeg, and other spices with a kind of a cookie scent that seems fitting

T- Strong cookie taste with a little cinnamon but it has a nutty aftertaste

M- Bold at first and crisp at the finish. It's almost like a dessert or pumpkin beer

D- Since it's only going to be around for a bit, I've got to get more. It's pretty darn good

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Photo of JayS2629
3.84/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Light rusty orange with thin white head and little lacing.

S- Spices; ginger and nutmeg, hint of clove. Hints of toffee and dark fruit; plums?

T- Sweet,clean, hints of ginger and spice.

M- Clean, slightly watery with a dry sweet finish.

D- Very easy to drink. Good Christmas beer.

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Photo of Anaz
3.83/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this at The Kitchen in Boulder, CO.

A-nice rusty brown color, faint head that quickly dissapates, almost no lacing.

S-Smells really bright, some citrus, even a bit of juniper and white pepper. Wasn't sure if I liked it, but didn't not like it either.

T- Tastes very different than it smells. The closest I could come to describing it was rye toast with orange marmalade, fresh ginger and fresh cracked black pepper on top. It finishes dry with a slight sweetness and bready spice.

M-Not a lot of body, a very light and crisp beer.

D-I found this to be very easy to drink, and had two. It was nice after a long shift, and a pleasant break from the usual.

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Photo of russpowell
3.81/5  rDev +15.5%
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...

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Photo of DesMoinesMike
3.81/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This seems a bit lite for a winter warmer. It's a light brown with a finger of white foam and a medium amount of carbonation. The aroma has some notable amount of spice, like cinnamon/nutmeg mixing in with the malts. For taste it had the spices but there was a bit of a hoppy twang. It was an ok beer but seemed to lack the body of a WW.

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Photo of Amalak
3.79/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Got as part of a beer of the month package. Copper/red in color with a thick foamy head and decent lace and bubbly. The smell was tremendous, EXTREMELY spicy scent with a strong cinnamon. One of the best smelling beers I can remember.

Again, the cinnamon and spices really come through. I am impressed with the quality. I would only drink one or two of these, but it seems to be high quality.

Definitely worth a taste, but don't know about a six pack.

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Photo of pat61
3.75/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: Pours dark amber with a slight chill haze crowned by a clingy 1” dirty white foam collar that slowly recedes. S: Floral aroma edging on fresh laundry, spice, ligh fruit. T: Spicy fruit flavors, plum, malt, light treacle. F: Very creamy and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, soft on the palate. O: Easy to drink but not as big as most winter warmers.

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Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.73/5  rDev +13%
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.

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Photo of Offa
3.72/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is pretty good overall and the spices, though not clearly evident, appear to be somewhat noticeable in a lightly herbal-spicey quality and a hint of what seems like aniseed.

Copper, it has a big, airy, off-white head quickly shrinking to a foamy ring.

Aroma is strong toast, barley, stewed fruit, hints of coriander and spices faintly reminiscent of some Belgian ales.

Taste is light herbal bitterness throughout and lingering in the aftertaste, with hint of aniseed; toasted crackers through but in the aftertaste especially; alcohol is faintly evident, especially in the finish and aftertaste; barley throughout; a light citrus quality, slightly astringent. It is a bit dry, with light sweetness and bitterness only.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.71/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood,

A: Pours amber with a finger of white head, good lace and head retention.

S: Some cinnamon, allspice, English malt, but mild, pleasant, not mind-blowing in any way.

T: Upfront on the first taste it is a typical English bitter. Enjoyable off-sweet Maris Otter malt with a light hopping. At the finish the spices dramatically show up adding a lot of complexity - allspice, nutmeg and some bitter cinnamon.

M: Not as robust as I would have liked, smooth, easy drinking in the end.

D: A real nice winter warmer here from Ridgeway. I have been disappointed from a couple of their winter beers in the past, but this one was very well done, and one I have to revisit if the bottles make it over here.

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Photo of tvv375ia
3.7/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from 500ml bottle into imperial pint glass

A-poured a burnt orange/apricot color with about 2 finger head that faded quickly without any lacing

S-a lot of malt and some apricot fruit then some carmel and spice

T-carmel malt, nutmeg with some fruitiness

M-ok carbonation a fairly light body

O-not bad probably not worth the price but I would take one if it was offered

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Photo of pzrhsau
3.7/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A: A rich golden color with bright orangish notes. A slight head with a little dissipation.
S: Sour fruit aroma with hints of cinnamon stick and other holiday spices.
T: Controlled balance of tartness and a very strong malt flavor. The finish almost has an oatiness to it which really brings out the flavor from the cinnamon.
D/M: Crisp and bubbly feel on the tongue. Much lighter than I expected from a Christmas beer. Decent for a holiday beer but not the weight I was expecting. Very drinkable.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.7/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Has a rich, malty, yeasty aroma with an undertone of spice and sweet hints. Pours a clear coppery-amber with a white head that does not stick around. Flavor is yeasty and malty with a hint of spice and just a touch of hops. Texture is tingly and lively so it dances on the tongue and on the way down.

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3.68/5  rDev +11.5%
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!

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Photo of dismal
3.68/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly dark orange with a nice big white head. Within a minute or two the head is reduced to almost nothing though still leaves decent lacing down the side of the glass. The first thing I got from the smell was hops, not in your face like an IPA but it was very upfront. The hops were kind of earthy smelling. The other main aromas were fruits and malt. There are hints of spices but nothing really sticks out a lot. The taste is slightly bitter and ends with a mild sweetness. Spices in the background but not as apparent as I was hoping for. Also had sort of an English ale type smell and taste to it that I've noticed in some other beers from England. The mouthfeel is very smooth and medium bodied. A bit lower ABV makes it drinkable. Pretty good tasting, not as spiced up as I was hoping for a Christmas beer but it's definitely isn't bad. Next holiday season I will be thinking about picking another one up.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a mostly clear honey color with a thin off-white head that fades rapidly to a nice coating that does last till the final few sips.

Sweet and spicy nose, smells kinda like ginger beer soda. Extremely unique nose and it is easy to tell where they came up with the 'pickled' nomenclature. Loads of spices like nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves.

Could almost pass for a pumpkin ale, as it has a heavily spiced flavor as well. Thin bodied, low carbonation and slightly sweet. Has a spice laden bitter finish. Malts are pretty neutral and there are a bit of hops, but if you don't like spices in your beer, this one aint for you.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.58/5  rDev +8.5%
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.

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Photo of mountdew1
3.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Colod was a dark amber, almost an orange brown. A multi finger cream white made up of medium sized bubbles lasted for a few minutes. It receded leaving a thin head with a bit of side cling. Small streams of bubbles rose from the bottom. Aroma was slightly sweet with a small amount of spice. Over time, a molasses flavor arose. Nothing else was overly present. Taste was tangy, melted to vanilla, ended up with some pepper spicyness. Overall, not as developed as a winter warmer can be. Coated well in the mouth, was perhaps a bit over carbonated tingly. Easy and pleasant to drink, but not the best winter warmer I have had.

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Pickled Santa from Ridgeway Brewing
77 out of 100 based on 78 ratings.