Anniversary Ale - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anniversary AleAnniversary Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

487 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 487
Reviews: 196
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 12.94%
Wants: 62
Gots: 68 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Wheatwine |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: hoppymeal on 05-08-2009

2009 Tap only
2010 Tap and bottle
2013 Tap and bottle

Same recipe every year, according to the brewer, though ABV varies slightly.

"Anniversary Ale~ A high gravity wheat wine made with blood oranges that render an alluring dark purple hue to the color. Flavor abounds from the spice of green peppercorns and tang from blood orange zest. Aggressive dry hop additions amplify the citrus overtones and spiciness found throughout. ‘Anni’ Ale typifies the full magnitude of Short’s Brewing Company by embodying all the complexities and fulfillment necessary to pay tribute to another year of brewing. 10% ABV 63 IBU's"
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 487 | Reviews: 196
Reviews by SportsandJorts:
Photo of SportsandJorts
4.61/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: a light orange color, good clarity. small white head that fades rather quickly to nothing

Smell: juicy oranges, more citrus, peppercorns and wheat. Pretty complex smell. the juicy oranges are a refreshing smell

Taste: strong orange flavor, comes in nice and juicy, some bitter orange come through, I believe its from the orange zest used, but it could be from hops. peppercorns come in slightly subdued but definitely there. all of this is lain over a wheat body. The juicy taste is just unbeatable. the balance is spot on and its very complex

Mouthfeel: kinda softer and lighter. actually refreshing which is weird but good for this heavy and strong of a beer. very hot on the backend too

Overall: i picked up the last one of these at the store when i had thought i missed it. and am i glad i did. this is a great beer. i wish i coulda got a whole sixpack. the tastes are spot. just delicous

More User Reviews:
Photo of tectactoe
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Mike for splitting this with me. Aged almost one year (2012 vintage). Pours a slightly red-tinted copper color with decent clarity and a light, off-white, wispy head that fizzles away in a short amount of time. The aroma is buckled down with a nice pungency of juicy oranges and tangerines. But not just any oranges - these are "blood" oranges.

I've never had a blood orange and I don't know exactly what they are, but if they're anything like blood diamonds, then I will not be having this beer ever again. I'm joking. But seriously, these oranges smell very fresh, ripe, and juicy. Light peppercorn on the nose mixes and fades in with the slight phenol character I'm picking up from the alcohol. It's not too strong, however - the oranges are always dominant. Light hop character, leafy and spicy, but not very "bitter" smelling.

This is another case of the taste being an exact replica of the smell in drinkable form. Oranges engulf the palate right out of the gate. For a second, they almost give a tart character - not quite puckering, but definitely borderline sour. Very fresh and vibrant as it slowly cascades into a bitter-sweetness. As this is happening, the phenol flavors come out a bit and the alcohol asserts itself - at 10% ABV, this beer is certainly no slouch.

Some other light citrus and grapefruit flavors are coupled with the oranges, but the orange definitely stands out the most. Peppercorns are barely noticeable, but can be found if you're looking. They provide a light spiciness that almost camouflages with the hop character - a mild leafy and herbal tone that adds more flavor than real bitterness. Medium-ish body, low-medium carbonation, smooth on the palate.

Another tasty beer from Shorts with another ingredient I've never tasted in real life and never would've thought to put in a beer. Nice execution with the "blood oranges" to give a very authentic and ripe flavor.

EDIT: 5/9/2013

Enjoyed a 2013 Anniversary Ale fresh. The blood oranges are a little more vibrant and assertive and the peppercorn is toned down just a touch, but it still an integral part of the brew. Hop character is also a bit more prominent. Mouth feel is better than I remember, and the juicy, sweet, and nearly tart blood orange finish is fantastic. Don't know if this is "better" fresh, or the 2013 batch was just a little more to my liking, but I've gotta bump the score. This is great stuff.

Photo of TCHopCraver
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes on 7/20/10.

A: The color of this beer has a ruby and garnet hue, like a "sailor's warning" sunrise over North Lake Leelanau. This is truly a beautiful beer. An off white 1/2 finger head fades to leave an attractive haziness on top. Dotty lacing meanders slowly down the sides of the glass.

S: BAM! BLOOD ORANGES! Really, that is the dominant aroma. Deeper inhales reveal the green peppercorn spice complement. I smell some wheatwine characteristics, but they are pretty much overpowered by the citrus and spice. This is a unique and pleasant smell.

T: Much more complex than the smell. The blood orange taste is evident throughout the sip and speaks primarily to the broad top of my tongue. The green peppercorn spice is also omnipresent and bites at the sides and tip of my tongue. The backside of each sip is where this beer really gets wild and crazy. At roughly the same time, the alcoholic heat, full, creamy malts, and bitter hops play like a trumpet fanfare on my palate. It is amazing to me how lasting an impression the bittering hops leave on my tongue, because for most of the sip, this is a sweet and spicy beer.

M: With the sweet citrus, spicy peppercorn, hefty malts, bitter finish, and the high alcohol content, there is a lot substance to this MF. It is perhaps medium bodied, but the component parts really titillate my palate.

D: This is a really large and interesting beer which I have had a couple of times now. But, with its aggressive spiciness, high a.b.v., and dry finish, I don't think this would be a 'drink often' beer for me.

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 release

A - Pours a nice clear red-tinged reddish orange with minimal head and essentially no lacing.

S - Citrus and wheat are the dominant aromas. Citrus is more pulp than rind.

T -- Big citrus taste, both pulp and rind. Nice acidity, but not sour. A bit of bitterness. Wheat is also prominent. Finishes a little dry and bitter. Also nice pepper on the finish.

M - Has the pillowy (for lack of a better term) mouthfeel I associate with wheatwines. Sometimes this can be overwhelming, but not so in this case. Finishes with some lingering bitterness.

O - Pretty enjoyable wheatwine, and I enjoyed the citrus and pepper components.

Photo of warriorsoul
3.34/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Huge thanks to Greg (gcare02) for this hand off.
Pours a orange-red color, very clear and with a generous finger of light tan head. Fades quickly w/ minimal lacing.
Extremely inviting aromas of oranges, grapefruit, and a hint of peppery spice.
Taste is much less exciting than the aroma. Heat up front distracts the overall experience, but once past the alcohol shock, the blood orange flavor is there. The peppercorns take over midway through the flavor and continues on into the finish.
The dry hopped addition is mostly lost at this point, but the zest finds its way into the aftertaste and keeps me coming back for another taste to see what else is there.
Wheat malt keeps the mouthfeel quite thin....was hoping for a bit more depth w/ the abv.
Not quite the winner I was expecting, but super glad to get to try it.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Nellie and thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a reddish-amber color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the oranges and wheat. The flavor is blood oranges, wheat and alcohol. There is a little bit of tartness in the flavor, but not as much as you would get in a sour ale. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very good beer.

Photo of sculls65
4.04/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Juicy blood orange.. big beer that sneaks up on you

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark orange pour, glints of red, 5/8" head, this is a very dark orange, like the kind you see after a night of partying way too hard. Aroma, mild sweetness, not the usual citrus aroma a hophead would be used to.

Taste, blood orange all over this, sweet in a natural kind of way. The sweetness is really covering up so much of the alcohol. The peppercorn presence, I was not able to perceive.

Mouthfeel is nice, because even though this was drank at the end of July, it has that kind of mouthfeel that is made for summertime. The body is relatively light and easy going, and the alcohol is nowhere to be found. Nice caramel presence as well.

Quite the enjoyable beer, glad I still have one left, the only question is, when?

Photo of glid02
4.33/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Lee - thanks!

Pours a bright and slightly hazy orange-red color with a one-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of sweet light malts with large amounts of bright and sweet citrus aromas, halfway between orange and grapefruit.

Tastes even more robust than it smells. Sweet and smooth light malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by moderately sugary citrus fruits. The citrus dries out near the end of the sip and carries through to an ending reminiscent of the aftertaste of grapefruit juice.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

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

Overall I was very impressed with how similar the flavor profile stayed to blood oranges. The sweetness was more robust than normal oranges and the citrus notes came through as much as any beer I've had previously. Very much worth a shot.

Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a dark burnt orange-red in color, thick and opaque. One finger of off-white head shows good retention and manages to leave a good amount of lacing, mostly leggy with some light patching, in good quantity on the glass.
The aroma is very much to par with expectations. Lots of orange and strongly so, with the particular sweet/sour blend that distinguishes blood oranges from the usual. The peppery note is easily detectable as well. A bit of wheat forms the backing for the rest of it.
The taste follows suit. The spice from the peppercorn is distinct, with an almost earthy vegetable element along with white pepper notes, all in a good way, behind sweet orange with just a bit of sourness and a touch of rind bitterness pulling through. The wheat is in here, but a stronger backbone would pull it all together to be even better, perhaps exceptional. It's certainly good, though.
There's no doubt this is crisp, and a medium body shows some depth to it, with a good smoothness that a little more of would serve to put this one a step above. It goes slightly slick in the mouthfeel toward the finish.

Photo of mdaschaf
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Thanks to Marc for sending this one my way.

A: Poured an impressive copper/orange/red color with a one finger off-white head. Moderate retention and lacing.

S: A heavy dose of blood oranges, very inviting, especially for a wheatwine. Some orange zest and a bit of spice as well.

T: More orange and orange zest, a bit of wheat, and spices. There is a slight sweetness from some caramel/toffee malt.

M: Medium to full bodied, but not really thick - just a bit heavy and filling. Nice level of carbonation, slightly dry finish.

O: One of the best wheatwines I have had so far. The blood oranges gave it a nice flavor and made it much more drinkable probably. Does not seem like a 10% beer whatsoever.

Photo of Stigs
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle, split - served in small tulips

A - pours a very interesting dark orange/red color with just a few spots of tiny bubbles. glass #1 was almost perfectly clear, the 2nd was considerably hazy.

S - bright citrus scents, which i would normally associate with abundant use of C hops is this time brought to the table by blood oranges.

T - following the nose with somewhat tangy, citrusy blood oranges. slowly creeps into the tart and sour region. the only other noticeable

M - mostly light, yet oily body. carbonation is moderate. just slightly drying from the tartness, but finishes clean with a pleasant lingering fruitiness.

D - interesting here, and perhaps the best wheatwine (a style i just cant seem to figure out) i've had to date. excellent use of fruit, and insanely dangerous with nary any noticeable alcohol.

Photo of nkersten
3.61/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into new belgium tulip. Pours a blood orange red with a small white head that fades to a ring. Smell is very citrusy, with lots of sweetness and orange zest. Taste is slightly sour and acidic, with lots of bitter orange zest and antiseptic in the finish. Aftertaste is not pleasant, but other then that, this is a tasty beer. Mouthfeel is heavy with a light carbonation. Drinkability isnt great, but I havent had much different for the style.

Photo of Sammy
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the brewpub, a wheatwhine with a lot of oranges and peppercorn. Dark brown and lacey. Full mouthfeel. Malty and licorice. Refreshing and how this would be amazing with a meal. Was fairly average in aroma, not as complex as expected. Had aged in bottle form, and was very rich, thanks Steve! same rating.

Photo of GDBEERMAN
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into tulip.

A: A deep, rich ruby red hue in the body. The white head pours about one finger formation and retention is not much more than a thin layer around the edges. Carbonation seems slow and great for style.

S: The aroma is nice and powerful, with a fruity sweetness of the blood oranges. Very nice barley and wheat aromas, at this point any hop aroma has mellowed out.

T/M: WOW, what a smooth wheat wine. Not syrupy body that I expect with the style or more crisp than a typical barleywine. The blood oranges add a juicy character that is well balanced with the malt body. A very tart, bitter fresh orange finish. The mouthfeel is very light and refreshing for the style. Lingering taste shows a good orange aspect, as well as focus on the malts.

O: This is a great wheat wine, and I would feel less concerned with using this blood oranges in a homebrew. I would not even think that this beer would be at 11.7% ABV at all, nice job.

Photo of 33nickadams
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a- reddish orange, semi-translucent, very little head

s- smells like cranberry orange

t- sweet and citrusy

m- goes down smooth and quick

d- very warm, lots of alcohol, could probably only have one at a time

Great beer! I am impressed with the creativity of Short's brewery. They don't disappoint and I think they are always worth a try.

Photo of russpowell
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cheers to MarcatGSB for this

Pours an effervescent caramel with a modicum of cream colored head. Decent head retention & lacing

S: Orange & tangerine rinds

T: Follows the nose, along with some ruby red grapefruit & faint bready notes up front. Some faint apricot notes hide beneath all the citrus & a kiss of pear as well, along with more bready notes. finishes with a citrus flourish, a touch grapefruit/earthy bitterness & a bit of mead/honey dryness

MF: Medium bodied, slight/smooth carbonation

I really enjoyed this. There now way a beer this big should go down so easy in warm weather. Could drink this all spring/summer if feasible

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

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours dark red brown, zero head despite an aggressive pour. Smells citrusy, very much like fresh squeezed orange juice. The peppercorns are in the nose as well, however much more subtly. Tart citrusy taste from the oranges, almost borders on sour. There is a spiciness from the peppercorns. Also some sweet caramel malt throughout. The mouthfeel is pretty thick and syrupy. Surprisingly drinkable for how sweet and high in alcohol it is. A really unique beer, worth tracking down and keeeping a few in the cellar.

Photo of Kegatron
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap @ The Great Taste of the Midwest (Madison, WI) on 8/14/10. Several samples served in a tasting mug.

Pours a clear cranberry color with a thin covering of off-white head. This fizzles down fairly quickly, leaving just some light spotty lace behind. The aroma is mostly all wheat and oranges in the nose, with a sweet tanginess and juicy fruit character that is working really well for me. Some light sugars, spice, and floral hops all round this out nicely.

The taste is sweet and tangy in the mouth with the aforementioned blend of wheat and oranges but then a tart spicy blast settles into the middle portion of the profile, before settling into a strong finish of pithy earthy bitterness. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied with a good feeling smooth crispness to it which keeps this moving well. As for the alcohol, I did get some warmth out of this while imbibing but it absolutely blew my mind when I found out that this was almost 12%. I would have never had guessed that, as this remained such a smooth sipper throughout.

A Blood Orange Wheat Wine sounded a little crazy when I first heard about this but the flavors all just worked very nicely for me here. I love that this didn't skip on the orange flavor and the addition of peppercorns really upped the zestiness of this to a new level. The finish was a little overly bitter IMHO but otherwise, this was pretty great stuff.

Photo of thagr81us
2.85/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Big thanks goes out to beeruser for sharing this one. 2010 Vintage! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured a deep red-orange with a minimal white head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, orange, sugar, and alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, orange, sugar, and syrup. It had a heavy feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall I was not really a big fan of this one. I'm starting to wonder if wheat wines are just not for me or something... The idea is nice, but usually the execution is off for my palate. The sweetness from the sugar on this one really killed it for me unfortunately. Worth trying for a fan of the style, but if you have never had one before I suggest starting elsewhere.

Photo of marcobrau
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red with a decent amount of carbonation in my tulip-shaped glass. Smells of blood oranges, soft cheese rind and rose water, but also a bit musty and metallic. The aroma gets much more complex and floral as the beer warms up to room temperature. Tastes tart with blood oranges melding with the hops in a peculiar way. Green peppercorn emerges towards the finish with ample bitterness. A touch metallic and tart. Slightly tannic in the finish when cold, but gets juicier with more peppery heat as it warms up. Surprisingly dry for a wheat wine and rather potent. Filtered with no yeast apparent. A very interesting beer that definitely gets better as it warms up to room temperature. Some of the individual flavors almost seemed offensive at colder temperatures, but as the warms up it's magic.

Photo of Tripphop
4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep orange color in the glass, very sexy color. Head is absent, managed to force a few bubbles with a heavy pour, but they run and hide. The carbonation is present in the mouth, however. Aromas of sweet candied oranges, smells sticky. Flavor has god intensity, orange is nicely squeezed in the midpalate with a wheaty finish. A good bit of heat fro mthe booze, matches up nicely with the mellow, rich body to this beer. Very solid brew, my favorite of the Short's I've tried.

Photo of alleykatking
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle. Many thanks go out to gratefulbeerhead aka Eric for this beer!

A- Pours a hazy orange/red color. Half finger white head that dies down rather quickly. Light streaky lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Nice citrus blood orange aroma. Light sweet malts I think in the middle with a good blending of peppercorn. The grapefruit aroma comes into the ending that rounds out the beer aroma. It will drawl you in for sure.

T- The bloodorange really stands out in the front of the beer. A light peppercorn blends well and rounds out the front part of the beer overall. A light sweet malt runs through the entire beer and well stands out for a second in the middle. A grapefruit like flavor in the ending brings a nice crisp bitterness.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the beer and style. Blood oranges flavor left on the palate with some hop bitterness in the aftertaste. The blending of all the flavors is nice and crisp with certain flavors coming out as well. Medium alcohol drying on the palate.

D- Short's just likes to make beers that make you think a lot. The flavors are very present during the whole beer and are in your face. Short's does well with making beers you want to drink over and over again. The ABV is high on this which limits it but only if you want to play it safe.

Photo of trappistlover
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(12oz bottle courtesy of rayl101! Many thanks Kevin!). Pours a slightly hazy orange-mahogany color with thin off-white head. Carbonation is quite active. Aroma had loads of sweet orange, pith, wheat, caramel, and light pepper. Taste is sweet with the orange really coming through. The peppercorns are noticeable, but only appear at times. This one is definitely more about the orange. Full bodied with a sticky texture. A nice beer!

Photo of SpdKilz
4.44/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A huge thanks to erikkoppin for this great extra. Cheers!

Appearance - Pours a ruddy color into my RR tulip. At first I see no head even with a relatively vigorous pour, however, thankfully small bubbles begin to filter up giving less than a finger of quickly dissipating head that leaves minimal lacing.

Smell - An utter amazing nose. Ripe, juicy citrus notes permeate the air (mostly orange), along with plenty of zest and peppery spices. Honestly, this has to be one of the better, if not the best smelling beers I've encountered. I would almost be content just sitting here, smelling this beer all night.

Taste - Wow, the orange is heavily present right off the bat...so much so I have never tasted such fruit in a beer of this nature. After the initial citrus blast there is a kick of peppery spices. These flavors meld together and complement each other surprisingly and appropriately well. The first couple sips I didn't taste any alcohol presence, which is quite an accomplishment for such a high abv beer. After a few mores sips I still do not taste it in the sip, but I can feel the gradual warming of my throat. Holy cow - this beer is fantastic.

Mouthfeel - Quite thick, low carbonation, dry finish not unlike some wines, and as stated, a nice warming sensation from the alcohol.

Drinkability - A sipper for sure. What an interesting beer; granted what was I expecting from Short's? I am very thankful I was able to try this style and beer in general. Haven't had many beers really surprise me lately so needless to say I am happy this beer blew me away. The way the sweet orange and peppery spices mix, the dryness, tartness, alcohol warmth...everything just makes this beer complete. Well done Short's.

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Anniversary Ale from Short's Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 487 ratings.