1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Father Christmas Highland Ale - The Olde Burnside Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Father Christmas Highland AleFather Christmas Highland Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

50 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 50
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 5
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
The Olde Burnside Brewing Company visit their website
Connecticut, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Legend has it that Father Christmas wandered through Scottish villages gathering a merry following and distributing sweets to children and "wee heavy," a cheery libation, to adults. Like its predecessors, Father Christmas is heavy and potent, tremendously and uniquely satisfying and flavorful. The aroma of toasted grain and mocha are mouth-watering. Father Christmas Ale is ruddy and ruby-brown, topped by a thick, loose, tan head. Sweet, roasted malt and mild smoky tastes merge into a phenomenal finish. The tall, cobalt-blue bottle, brightly labeled, makes for a wonderful presentation and host's gift. Delightful in every respect, Father Christmas Highland Ale is a Yuletide staple and Santa's favorite. He enjoys a pint at my house annually and never spares a drop.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-04-2005)
View: Beers (11) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Ratings: 50 | Reviews: 30 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 420Rick
420Rick

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

03-13-2014 18:44:42 | More by 420Rick
Photo of KelsoSaaz
KelsoSaaz

Connecticut

4.16/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into snifter

A: Pours a deep mahogany brown that shines amber when held to light. Thin, quickly dissipating, khaki head.

S: Woody, peaty and rich cherry aromas up front. Caramel and other sweet malt tones are apparent as well. Earthy and boozy notes too.

T: Sweet and rich malts up front dominate flavors. Not as much cherry flavor as I would have expected. Very soft, medicine and cherry flavors are what you taste here. Earth and slightly tart dark fruit flavors lurk in the background.

M: Very slightly viscous body. Moderate to mild carbonation.

O: A nice winter treat. Malty and sweet with deeper cherry flavors than other similar beers this beer sets itself apart from the pack in a good way. Not your typical scotch ale; this beer is great for philosophical evenings in the dead of winter.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2014 02:31:17 | More by KelsoSaaz
Photo of edhizdeid
edhizdeid

Kentucky

4/5  rDev +3.4%

02-16-2014 05:05:32 | More by edhizdeid
Photo of Mess
Mess

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +3.4%

01-20-2014 03:31:36 | More by Mess
Photo of tigg924
tigg924

Massachusetts

4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

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

Smell: peat, caramel, and berries

Taste: big time caramel and cherries, light chocolate and bread

Mouthfeel: very sweet, medium body, moderate carbonation

Overall: I loved this beer and is now one of my favorites coming out of Connecticut. This is a malty dessert beer and not an everyday drinker. The caramel works perfectly with the cherry for a holiday treat. I will be getting this again.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2014 13:50:13 | More by tigg924
Photo of JTomczak
JTomczak

Connecticut

4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

12-29-2013 17:20:07 | More by JTomczak
Photo of Robtobfest
Robtobfest

Connecticut

3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

12-25-2013 03:06:38 | More by Robtobfest
Photo of ejane
ejane

Connecticut

4.75/5  rDev +22.7%

12-23-2013 16:21:59 | More by ejane
Photo of PicoPapa
PicoPapa

Connecticut

3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle. Part of the ever so popular 2 pack.... Pours a dark brown color with some medium brown ruby hues and a half inch of head. Minimal lacing. Aromas of caramel and butterscotch. Malty and boozey. The taste is more of the butterscotch with lots of caramel malts. Slightly watery with lots of alcohol flavor. Earthy towards the end. Slightly medicinal. Butterscotch finish. Mouthfeel is a bit thin. Overall, a decent Scotch Ale I'd buy again, but I'm not a big fan of the 2 pack format.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2013 02:10:10 | More by PicoPapa
Photo of Atomicskis5
Atomicskis5

Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

04-11-2013 00:59:59 | More by Atomicskis5
Photo of thegerm87
thegerm87

Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

03-16-2013 03:11:17 | More by thegerm87
Photo of Thads324
Thads324

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

01-08-2013 21:16:30 | More by Thads324
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Capone's, Norristown, PA

Served in a snifter, a garnet-brown liquid, hazy, with a thin cap of beige bubbles on top; minimal retention and lacing. Muted aroma of caramel, nutty, woody, touch of brown sugar and cocoa. Taste was fairly mild, caramel malts, brown sugar, light fruity esters, hints of cocoa cobwebs, and smoked wood. I find some beers of this style to be bland and flavorless, and others to be overblown and even sickeningly sweet. This one was at a pretty solid mid-ground, though overall not very interesting. Medium body, perhaps thin for the style, but easily drinkable; soft carbonation, and ABV fairly well-hidden.

Serving type: on-tap

12-24-2012 06:05:41 | More by Rifugium
Photo of davey101
davey101

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

12-21-2012 05:40:18 | More by davey101
Photo of Casterbridge
Casterbridge

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

12-20-2012 12:55:13 | More by Casterbridge
Photo of rolltide8425
rolltide8425

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +3.4%

12-20-2012 01:59:03 | More by rolltide8425
Photo of yeti123
yeti123

Connecticut

4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

12-04-2012 02:46:45 | More by yeti123
Photo of jrfehon33
jrfehon33

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +3.4%

12-02-2012 23:10:24 | More by jrfehon33
Photo of raythealeman
raythealeman

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

04-05-2012 01:14:16 | More by raythealeman
Photo of chrispoint
chrispoint

Connecticut

2.5/5  rDev -35.4%

02-18-2012 09:02:32 | More by chrispoint
Photo of jfcaa193
jfcaa193

Connecticut

3/5  rDev -22.5%

01-30-2012 02:10:41 | More by jfcaa193
Photo of HopsHopenstein
HopsHopenstein

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

01-01-2012 19:26:45 | More by HopsHopenstein
Photo of wowbagger
wowbagger

Virginia

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this while traveling for the holidays. Decent head. Pours dull brown with reddish notes. Smells of yeast and cherries. Sharp flavor, but mild hops and malt. Sweet but only just, which balances well. Aftertaste is bready.

Overall, very pleased with this one. I would recommend it to anyone who can find some.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2011 17:39:52 | More by wowbagger
Photo of Pahn
Pahn

New York

3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 liter swing top bottle into Duvel tulip. It's Christmas Eve, may as well start into this giant Father Christmas Highland Ale from my hometown brewery.

Appearance: Free pour yields a 2 inch frothy offwhite head that dissipates steadily and lacelessly. Pours a hazy red orange, and leaves small streaks and spots of lacing.

Smell: Butterscotch and caramel at first. Very rich and dessert like. Soon, a strong cherry cordial note emerges (it's not like cherry, or chocolate, or chocolate covered cherry, but the full on, syrupy flavor of eating a cherry cordial). The cherry cordial and caramel sort of vie for prominence. Faint sourdough aroma present underneath.

Unique and inviting.

Taste: Like the nose, but with a watery and sour Euro-lager-like tang, with cherry cordial in the middle and caramel in the crisp finish. Takes some getting used to, but after a few sips, I'm on board.

The two main players in the flavor and aroma remain prominent... in fact, this beer doesn't change much from start to finish. Alcohol is completely masked. Some toasted bread flavor is there under the fruit and caramel. It's good, and well balanced, but a bit bland.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. At times creamy, at times watery. High side of moderate carbonation. Crisp, semi-dry finish.

Overall: This is an interesting beer. Despite being decidedly less complex than the better Scotch ales of the world, the flavors here aren't something you often find in a beer. Nor is anything really out of place.

Father Christmas Highland Ale is a good one for celebrating. It doesn't have the character to stand up to the kind of "sit there, drink, think," kind of drinking that I often do, but it would be perfect for getting merry in the company of friends. Hidden alcohol, pleasant taste, giant bottle.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2011 02:21:33 | More by Pahn
Photo of layapandora
layapandora

Connecticut

4/5  rDev +3.4%

12-22-2011 20:52:19 | More by layapandora
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Father Christmas Highland Ale from The Olde Burnside Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 50 ratings.