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Heavy Seas - Winter Storm ("Category 5" Ale) - Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Winter Storm ("Category 5" Ale)
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BA SCORE
86
very good

912 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 912
Reviews: 510
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 12.37%
Wants: 32
Gots: 59 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 02-17-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Heavy Seas - Winter Storm ("Category 5" Ale) Alström Bros
Ratings: 912 | Reviews: 510 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ShanePB
2.51/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Extremely unpleasant flavor on the palate which is unfortunate as the look, smell and carbonation level of the beer was well done.

Photo of Zorro
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 Oz bottle Sampled through the efforts of SS 05 BIF and Meathookjones.

A careful pour in to the glass reveals a dark for the style DIPA. Pours a clear copper red colored ale with no real head formation.

Smell is dark malt and strong hop aromas. Slightly sour smelling with mostly citrus aromas and a slight pine aroma. The alcohol fumes carry pepper and bitter orange scents.

Taste is sweet and mildly bitter at the beginning. This DIPA stays smooth through out the glass and never gets into the harshness zone. The hops get quite woody very fast here and make for a mellow and dry DIPA with a minimal grapefruit and pine flavor. Strongly herbal flavored ale.

Mouthfeel is good.

This very drinkable strong IPA, strong enough to numb your tongue this just doesn't taste that strong. This is in the same class as a dry English bitter in pleasantness to drink.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.25/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a dark aged copper body that is crystal clear with a thick creamy head that is light tan but last and last , sticking to the sides when it settles. This beer has a gentle carbonation with no sign of yeast.

S- This beer has a deep green dark hops note with a fresh malt note with some light toasted qualities. The aroma is big with the hop blending nicely with the malt complexity.

T- This beer has a big hops flavor on the first few sips that dominate the flavor. Then the softer sweet pale malt and caramel malt flavors come through with a hint of dry toasted malt in the background. The hops flavors continues dominates the finish nicely.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a creamy texture and a faint alcohol presents that is not really a head but smoothes out the sweetness very nicely.

D- This beer has a big hops that overpower the malts a bit but both are big fresh flavors. This is a strong ESB and the best, and only, Imperial ESB, I have had.

Photo of jdhilt
3.46/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a three finger cream head that fades slowly to a thin layer leaving a good lace. Nice clear amber color. Mix of hops and malt nose. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Flavor is almost sweet caramel with the hops balancing. Better than an ESB - brewer calls this an imperial ESB which fits. $2.00 for a 12oz bottle from Tullys Beer & Wine Wells, Me. Best before Mar 2009.

Photo of BillRoth
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of HopHead84
3.67/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

5/15/2012

A: Amber with good clarity. The head is a finger of slow moving beige foam. Thick sheets of lacing linger on the sides of the glass.

S: Rich malt character, redolent of bread and caramel, with pronounced dark fruit aromatics. Raisin blends with plum, prune, and date. There's a firm sugary sweetness and a touch of alcohol with earthy undertones.

T: Caramel and sweet bready malt with brown sugar and earthy notes. Light toastiness with pervasive prune, plum, and raisin. There's a low bitterness with a light alcohol presence. I get some lightly astringent dark fruit skin in the finish.

M: Upper medium body with lower medium carbonation. The mouthfeel is smooth and sticky with a little alcohol warming.

Overall: I guess it's not really an ESB but it's still a pretty good beer and better than expected.

Photo of billab914
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish shaped pint glass. It poured a dark amber, almost mahogany like color. The head started off full and frothy and lasted pretty well into drinking the beer. Some nice lacing was left as I drank it as well.

The aroma shows a good amount of caramel and malty flavors to it. An herbal hoppiness is there as well and adds some spicy notes to the aroma. Pretty nice balance to all the flavors going on in it.

The taste has a pretty big malty base to the beer with some caramel coming through in the sweetness. The hops add an earthy spice and some herbal qualities to it. The hops give it a nice spice on their own without having to actually add the "winter" spices so many others versions have.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. drinkability is decent, it was a nicely flavored winter seasonal. It was malty, hoppy and spicy and worked all of those flavors together nicely. Nice beer for the style and season.

Photo of John_M
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on cask at Max's. IMO, this beer is much better on cask then it is in bottle or regular draft.

The beer pours an attractive copper color with very good head retention and outstanding lacing. The beer is very perfumy on the nose, reminding me more of an IPA then an imperial ESB. It's quite attractive actually. On the palate this beer is very nice indeed, and the cask conditioning really softens out some of the rough edges I don't care for in bottle/draft. Again, the beer tastes more like an IPA, but there is some nicie malt to counter the rather large amount of hops. The beer has a very nice soft, smooth mouthfeel, which must be from the cask conditioning. I find this beer to be quite rough in bottle/draft, but on cask this beer is so much more drinkable and enjoyable. The abv. is noticeable, but is not at all obtrusive, and the beer is actually pretty drinkable.

Very nice beer, at least on cask. Any other format and I wouldn't get it, but on cask this is a beer I quite appreciate and enjoy.

Photo of biegaman
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Saved for the first snow storm of the year and while today's flurries didn't exactly constitute a 'Category 5' storm, they were enough to make for trecherous driving. I'm very happy to be home tonight after the snow and cold rain made my crossing the city a bit of a nightmare and my trip on the highway more of a skate than a drive.
Some head would persist, even off a very slow pour, although it fades quickly. A nice tawny sienna coloured body. Thin lacing.
Pleasant aroma, brimming with lightly fruity and bitter hops blended with a buttery, bready toffee undercoating. Mouthfeel comes across a little thin as the alcohol isn't outwright detectable, but certainly detracts from the casual quaffability of average bitters. Very little hop bitterness in the mouth, especially surprising considering the bitterness level led on in the aroma. Taste offers a piney, buttery malt, with some definte hop resin. Flavours stay fairly unassertive to the palatte - well blended and tasteful - just a tad unassertive. Too tasteful to be bland, but not quite enough of what I'd ask from anything bearing the moniker 'Imperial' in its name...
I should admit though, I do like the concept of an "Imperial ESB" for these cold, Canadian months and while it failed to really captivate me, it seemed to do the trick all the same...

Photo of Wasatch
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to shaebs99 and ThorsHammer for this brew.

Pours a nice clean/clear dark golden amber/orange color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tan head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing. The nose is malty, hoppy, slight citrus/pines, and lots of caramel. The taste is bitter, malty, hoppy, tones of citrus/pines, and caramel. The finish is bitter and dry. Medium body. Very drinkable, one of the best I've had from CC, recommended, Thanks Steve and Eric.

Photo of ppoitras
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with meathookjones. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a big pillowy 2" light beige head above the slightly cloudy, light copper brew. Laces excellently, with large chunks here, there, everywhere, and aroma is intense piney hops. Taste is initially malty, and the hops kick in, yet not as intensely as the nose led me to expect. As balanced as you'll see a DIPA, although the hops burps have already started. Mouthfeel and drinkability excellent for the style. Check it out if hops are your thing.

Photo of sendbeer
3.25/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of rolltide8425
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of plaid75
4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at Canterbury Ales, Huntington, NY.

Poured a deep amber hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good lacing and retention.

The smell featured an earthy grainy caramel malt with a touch of grassiness.

The taste featured a multiple tiered malt that started with an earhy sweetness and finished with a toasty buttery bread.

The mouthfeel was clean with a dry finish.

Overall a tasty and hearty winter delight.

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of beerthulhu
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Imperial ESB.

A: Poured a dark amber with a thin off white head that quickly faded.

S: dark caramelized malting with a moderate hop bitterness and dry earthy aroma.

T: The flavor was very malty and warm roasted with a big sweetness coming from the grain bill. The palate was hearty with some dry caramel, biscuit bread and spicy alcohol fusels (dry cinnamon, nutmeg). Overall was a tad sweet and lacked the big bitterness per style but it did leave a decent lingering hop bitterness but not enough to balance out the sweet malt or justify it as an imperial.

M: lively and highly carbonated with a slight stickiness and creamy, smooth texture.

D: Overall a tad sweet for mulitiples along with the high ABV but was generally a good experience by itself and six pack worthy for future drinkings.

Photo of Boone757
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of Tone
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy, rich amber color. 1/3 inch head of a pale tan color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells strongly of hops, then some sweet malt come through, there's some nutty and biscuit aromas as well. Fits the style of a Extra Special / Strong Bitter. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with an average carbonation level. A noticeable dryness is present as well. Tastes of hops up front, then sweet malt, then the nut flavors and dryness are present, an interesting yeast flavor, a slight alcohol flavor come through in the middle, and the finish is again hops. Overall, not quite what I was expecting from an ESB, but surprisingly good.

Photo of Viggo
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on a cold evening after a spirited game of hockey.

Porus a clear copper, some reddish hues, thick off white head forms, sticks nicely, very persistent, looks really good. Smell is sweet, some toffee, nice citrus/floral hops, bit of vanilla and chocolate, some yeast, very nice. Taste is odd, malty caramel, citrus, floral, mint? WTF! Weird astringent minty flavour. Spicy, very interesting, almost tingly mouthfeel. Medium body, low carbonation, alcohol warming, not sure what to think. I like the concept.

Photo of Bighuge
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy copper appearance. Good sized creamy off-white head. Lacing is full. This brew has a nose reminiscent of Rogue's Brutal Bitter, except with a little more caramel malt character. It's got a fresh, grapefruit like hop aroma with a little cannabis mixed in. Unike mixture of bready malts, fruity yeasts, bitter and somewhat raw hops. Great flavor combo for me. Body is a little better than medium and the carbonation is subtle. My first Clipper City. And it's a winner.

Photo of IPAchris
3.25/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of harpus
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of glid02
4.22/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cask at Aroma's in Athens.

Pours a hazy light brown color with a 1.5-finger, large-bubbled light tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of lightly toasted caramel malts with large amounts of citrus and lighter amounts of pine. The nose in this is very good though purists will likely disagree.

Tastes good. Light caramel malt flavors have a tinge of nuttiness and hold more sway than they did in the aroma. The malt flavors are soon joined by pine and citrus hop flavors that carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a solid thickness with soft carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have a few more.

Overall I very much enjoyed this beer. While much hoppier than classic ESB's I think the hops worked in this beer's favor and the malt profile itself is nothing to sneeze at. Well worth a shot.

Photo of tone77
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a deep caramel color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is dominated by hops, floral. Taste is well balanced hops and malts, a touch of alcohol is present, just a tad bit sweet. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a quality beer.

Photo of Bitterbill
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I got this bottle in a trade with Wasatch. Thanks John!

It pours from 12oz bottle a slightly hazy medium gold/brown with a very small head of foam that left the scene quickly. Just a ring around the glass and some spotting left after about a minute.

The smell is about equal portions of sweet malt and citrus hops.

The taste on first sips gives me a very large caramel malt flavour and some alcohol. A few more sips in and the hops take their place with both grass and grapefruit and some earthy flavour is there as well. It has a medium mouthfeel and it finishes with a healthy dose of grass. A pretty good sipper here but I think the alcohol isn't as well hidden as in other brews of similar abv. Too much warming in the throat.

Heavy Seas - Winter Storm ("Category 5" Ale) from Heavy Seas Beer
86 out of 100 based on 912 ratings.