Anniversary Ale - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anniversary AleAnniversary Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

488 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 488
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: 488 | Reviews: 196
Photo of chugalug06
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Nice tan foamy head. Brew is cloudy orange color.

S - Lots of citrus! Some sweet fruits too. suagry. some orange and lime.

T - Unique bitterness. Lots of grapefruit. some unusual orange flavors and perfectly floral.

M - Smooth, sweet bitterness. Wonderful carbonation. No heat.

O - This brew optimizes what I love about Shorts. Very unique brew. Yum. Nice sweetness, very refreshing. Highly recommended, unique brew. Very sweet, but in a good way.

Photo of david131
4.3/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- A clear, deep red liquid with some orange highlights. The bone white head is creamy and has some decent retention.

S- Oranges, pine, fruit punch, flowers, alcohol, and a bit of pepper. Complex and very appealing.

T- Caramel, grapefruit, oranges, peppercorns, and a bit of nuttiness. Unique and delicious without getting too crazy.

M- Very smooth body with a touch of lasting bitterness and alcohol warmth. The sweetness keeps things in check.

D- Overall, the alcohol is hidden extraordinarily well and the sweetness isn't too rich. Drinks far too easily for the ABV.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Holy hell what do we have here. I have been dying to crack this one open and once I did I had no idea what I was in store for. Served chilled and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 08/13/2010.

The pour was a very clear dark amber color with lots of orange highlights to it. Small head of white tops it off nicely with a light bit of lacing that eventually falls by the wayside.

Aroma is well oranges. They dominate everything about this beer and I absolutely loved it. Rich and sweet oranges are all over the place, it was like drinking juice in the morning, so sweet and fresh. I could see how some would see this as over done, but I really did think it was fantastically put together. A touch of light pepper in the finish, but mostly just the sweetest, juicest orange you have ever come across. Really quite well done I have to say.

Overall this is gonna be a love it or hate it beer, an I loved it, really worked very well for me on nearly every level.

Photo of goblue3509
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby redish blood organish color with very little head and a slight amount of hops. The aroma is of big orange and some other citrus notes along with a hint of peppercorn and some breadiness. The taste has a breadiness backbone with hints of pepper but the real star is the big orange and grapefruit flavors. A nice sweet inviting taste. There is a slight hop bite at the end to bring in some balance. There is no hint of booze. The mouthfeel is moderately carbonated. Overall this is a very good beer , the aroma draws you in and the taste left me wanting more. I would seek this beer out.

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

Poured into Bruery snifter.

Pours 1 finger of light beige head. Fades to a ring. Leaves some very nice lace. Color is a dark copper with a ruby hue to it.

Aroma: Big citrus. Orange, grapefruit, lemon. Light wheat. Floral hops. Smelling more like a dipa, but I like it.

Taste: Big grapefruit citrus taste with some orange peel and lemon zest. Has some wheat and a big floral hop profile. This is boarderline IIPA. Very well done. Not too much malt showing here. Has some spice flavor to it.

Mouthfeel: Bitter, smooth, and a bit creamy. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends with a bite of grapefruit, a slight amount of stickiness.

Overall, this wheatwine drinks like an IIPA. Very fresh hops and citrus profile. It is very good and drinks easily. I will have more of this one.

Photo of sukwonee
4.34/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one as an extra through a trade. Thanks (you know who you are!) I really enjoyed this one.

A: Reddish brown, transparent but a bit cloudy, half a finger head, some spotty lacing.

S: Blood orange... wow. It smells awesome. I can also smell something spicy (must be peppercorn as the bottle mentions), malt,

T: Ok, so... this beer is surprisingly bitter. I can taste the bitterness from orange zest towards the end. Starts off a bit on the sweet side, blood orange, some spice kicking in afterthat, followed by bitterness. Lingering taste is spice and orange zest. Quite unique (I haven't tasted anything like this before). I can also taste tangerine and alcohol as well.

M: I have never had a "wheatwine" before, but I was expecting something a bit thicker (like a barleywine). Its texture is closer to an IPA. Good amount of carbonation, and surprisingly refreshing. Dry finish.

O: I really enjoyed this, but I guess I haven't had anything else to compare this against. I will be seeking other "wheatwines" and compare. I also may be very partial here because I love the taste of blood orange. If you like blood orange and don't mind the alcohol heat, this is your beer.

Photo of alpinebryant
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pour is a dark orange caramel with a large white head and strong lacing.

S: Aroma of sweet orange peel and citrus. Perhaps the best wheatwine that I have smelled. Sweet caramel that is light with a refreshing hop presence and a touch of pepper.

T: Surprisingly bitter coming from the aroma with a refreshing hop presence. Healthy peppercorn flavors with a refreshing overall taste. A good dosing of sweetness mixing in with strong caramelization. At the end of the flavor profile the blood orange really comes into play. It would be hard for this to be done better, it really comes together extremely well round.

M: Light in body and a light carbonation, to style.

O: Extremely well rounded and great tasting. Definitely one that I would pick a bunch of and perhaps age if it ages well.

Photo of DrDoitchbig
4.37/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is on my current list of favorites. I was lucky enough to find another 6-pack of it after initially only buying 3 bottles. I find myself going through them way too fast as I like to hang on to a couple.

Appearance: I've had this beer a few times and I've poured it a few different ways. If you go with a careful pour you get a slightly hazy reddish-pink grapefruit juice colored concoction with a thin veil of light pink head. If you go for the aggressive pour you get a darker colored liquid that's almost brown with tones of red. Lots of sediment which could be yeast, but I almost want to say it's blood orange zest. The head starts off more impressive with the aggressive pour but quickly subsides to the same thin cap. Minor, minor lacing splashes the glass here and there.

Smell: No surprises here, everything you can smell is basically listed on the front of the bottle. Big on the blood orange which ends up smelling a bit more like grapefruit which I suspect is due to the dry-hopping. There is a mild spicy which is no doubt attributed to the peppercorns.

Taste: To me the fusion of hops and fruit generally turns out better than it sounds. I think a lot of it has to do with careful selection of the varietals the brewer decides to use. What was true in the smell continues on to the taste. The blood orange intermingles perfectly with the grapefruit/citrus rind hop flavors to the point where you aren't quite sure where one ends and the other begins. There's a smidgen of floral hops to be found as well. The peppercorn returns to add a nice bit of spiciness right before the fantastic tart finish. A beer with all these ingredients just doesn't sound like it should work but Short's pulled it off. The only knock I can come up with is that I didn't get any actual wheatwine characteristics. Perhaps it would be better classified as a fruit beer, but really I'm picking nits. I love this stuff.

Mouthfeel: In this department I recommend the full on aggressive pour as the beer is a bit fuller on the mouth. This is generally my approach with any wheat based beer. Generally the yeast contributes quite a bit to the mouthfeel. It's a smooth medium bodied affair. Carbonation is just where you want it. You know it's there and it makes the flavors pop, but prickly in the least bit.

Drinkability: Dangerously drinkable. I personally cannot detect a hint of alcohol despite the hefty 11.7% of this beer. This is comparable to Double Crooked Tree levels of wizardry. I believe a lot of this has to do with the overall strength of the flavors that completely mask it. I could session this, except if I did I'd wind up passed out in some strange place, like underneath my dining room table.

This is probably the best beer I've had out of the Short's camp. Their bizarre creations can be hit or miss, count this firmly in the hit category. I think I might return to the store where I bought it and pick up another 6-pack or two. Here's to hoping they have some left.

Photo of emmasdad
4.37/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was intrigued to happen upon a sample of this one, as I am a big fan of properly done wheatwines. Poured a nice medium orange color, with a bit of off-white foam on top. Great aromas here, blood orange, lemon zest and sweet malt. On the palate, this one was fairly alcoholic, but in a very good way, but the fresh citrus really cut what could have been a cloying sweetness, and raised this one to the level of greatness. One of the better beers I've had this year.

Had a couple bottles of this one, and it did not approach the greatness of the tap version, so I will adjust my score accordingly. The cloudy pour and sour orange flavor detract a bit from what was great about this one on tap.

Photo of Ri0
4.39/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into teku.

A - Pours a deep apricot orange with 2 finger head that is eggshell. Fades quickly and leaves a very thin ring and some lacing around the glass.

S - Just wow, I could smell this right away when I started to pour. Huge aromas of blood oranges, citrus, with a sweet malty backbone. I'm sure there is a wheat beer in there, but the blood oranges smell so good!

T - Blood oranges, grapefruit, lemon peel, loaded with citrus flavor! Again the wheat base is hard to pick out and a mild sweetness of malts fills the middle. I can slightly find the notes of the green peppercorns on the finish. Some alcohol is present.

M - Medium to light body, excellent carbonation.

O - As my first Wheatwine, I love it! I'm sure they are not all this citrusy, but this was excellent. I need to convince Dan Cary from New Glarus to make one of these. He sure knows his way around wheat beer. Excellent work Shorts!

Photo of MbpBugeye
4.39/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tried at the summer brewers guild fest 2010 and loved it. We were lucky enough to find one last bottle in a shop somewhere in downtown Ann Arbor.

A dry hopped Wheatwine brewed with blood oranges, blood orange zest and green peppercorns. A very interesting and delicious idea.

A- Very little head forms on this one, but the suds that are there are pretty white. The beer is a bright and glowing reddish amber.

S- The smell is lovely. Its very unique. I was expecting all orange but it isnt that way at all. Its actually got a lot of spice and pepperiness. Smells of green bell pepper, peppercorn, orange and spicy wheat. Oranges still remaining the most dominant, however.

T- The bell pepper, peppercorn and spice take over here. Its much stronger than I expected. The oranges are there, but unlike any orange Ive had (Ive never had a blood orange). Pepper is strong here as is spicy wheat and and earthy quality.

M- I felt that this was much too thin and not carbonated enough. This is really the only glaring default I found with this beer.

Photo of largadeer
4.4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a glowing red color, forming a thin but lasting head.

Awesome nose of grapefruit and blood orange amplified by citrusy hops. Slight marijuana and herbal notes. Peppercorns lend some spiciness. The fruit and hops work really nicely together.

Delicious grapefruit and orange flavors on the palate. Spicy, peppery, herbal. Some earthy notes mid palate. Finishes quite bitter and herbal. Dry and light bodied. Delicious.

Photo of MarkIntihar
4.41/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my New Belgium Belgian glass.

A - Pours a beautiful orange amber, with half a finger's worth of slightly off white head. The color of this beer is absolutely incredible. It looks like the inside of a blood orange with just a hint of tan added to it. Simply marvelous.

S - Blood orange, honey, dry hops, blended together to make an incredibly unique aroma unlike any beer I've ever smelled. Reminds me more of a mead than a beer, but is definitely on par with what the label describes. Not picking up much green peppercorn, however.

T - Follows closely from the nose, with the blood orange being the dominant force here. Don't get as much honey in the mouth, but definitely pick up the dry hop finish, and in the mouth the green peppercorn is much more evident, which works well with the dry hop character to leave the mouth feeling cleansed after each sip. Once again, a truly unique blend and an altogether pleasant experience.

M - For a higher abv beer, this one is smooth. Does leave the mouth feeling a bit dry, but not to the point where it's upsetting. As mentioned in the taste, does a fantastic job of cleansing the palate.

O - Overall I am very impressed with this beer. I only spent a few months in Michigan, but Short's is definitely one of the breweries that I will truly miss.

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 JohnGalt1
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received this as an extra in a super trade with Kbeals... shared with the boys... Huge thanks Kevin!!

Big eggshell head ... fluffy.. dies pretty quick leaving behind little lacing... The brew is deep orange.

Citrus and mild spice dominate the nose.. little in the way of malts in the bruising citrus assault.

Flavor is pithy and still plenty citrusy, yet less than the aroma... peppercorns add a unique spiciness.. pale malts are there only in subtle sweetness.. thicker body and a lighter than expected carbonation.

Sam, Eric and I were debating the ABV... because we could not pick it out at all.

Very cool Kevin... Soooo stoked I had the opportunity to try this one pretty fresh.


Photo of techfed87
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice orange head. Color is a reddish amber.

Smell is very floral, with a nice, sour hoppy characteristic to it.

First sip is very hoppy, but at the same time quite circus-filled as well, almost like a grapefruit.

One of the big selling points of this beer comes from the blood oranges that they add to it, and I can say it really gives life to the flavor.

A very delicious beer and an excellent way to celebrate their sixth year of production. Very good job, Shorts!

Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours an orangish color with an off white head. Smell is immediately magnetic to my nose--the peppercorns and blood orange really make a wonderful pairing. The taste is another step up from there, with the peppercorns not too pronounced and the blood oranges presenting a cacophony of flavors all by themselves. Mouthfeel is exception...thought this was about 5% abv based on taste. Drinkability isn't that high, although I thought about boosting the score about more as this is so good compared to other wheatwines that it's drinkability is by definition good or a bit higher.

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

Fresh 2011 batch purchased from Fitzgeralds Restaurant in Eagle River Michigan. Poured from bottle into snifter.

Appearance: Pours a deep ruby red with a golden white cream half finger fluffy head. Nice lacing that hangs around.

Nose: Blind nose would lead me to a sticky hop nose, but since i read, I know its straight citrus that I'm detecting...bit of toffee, caramel, and spice. Some alcohol in the nose, but not overbearing, really allowing the sweet/tart orange to come through.

Taste: Very, very unique. The mouth starts with a sweet hint of hop bitterness followed by a sweet citrus and toasted malt. The blood oranges shine brightly, supported by an astringent peppery palate. The zest of orange gives this beer a great crisp, dry, puckering quality that adds a fantastic level of complexity.

Mouth: Bright, dry, and crisp mouthful that is fun and not overwhelming. The alcohol is not overly noticeable, and in perfect balance.

Drink and overall: The Shorts legend continues to grow. Fantastic wheat wine, that shines with the addition of peppercorns and blood oranges. I'd say this is a hit, rather than a miss. A beer for savoring.

Photo of xnicknj
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into Perennial tulip - thanks to erikkoppin

Lightly hazed brilliant orange pour with a thin suggestion of head, dissolving quickly, leaving little lacing or retention.

Literally, I brought the glass to my nose, took a whiff and went, "whoa!" Explosively juicy blood oranges, pithy and pulpy with light sweetness. Boozy glow, spicy peppercorns, wheat and citrus.

An absolute avalanche of blood orange with notes of citrus peel, pulpy juicy and light sweetness. Citric with warming alcohol throughout. The backbone lurks underneath the metric ton of oranges with honey, wheat and sugar. Wait for it...bam! - right at the end, the peppercorns poke through, smacking the palate with a spicy warmth, combining with the booze and oranges to finish it off.

Fuller medium body, lighter carbonation, sticky and full on the tongue. I really enjoyed the hell out of this one - between the oranges, peppercorns and warmth, this was one of the best Short's beers I've tasted in a long time. More, please.

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

Courtesy of jdubFL, wow! thanks Justin! Growler poured out clear copper with thin off white head. The aroma is IIPA like with fresh rich citrus, pine and grassiness and then a mild malt like sweetness. The taste is yummy with fresh rich citrus flavors, some pine hop bitterness, spicy rye notes, some drying malt roastiness and a thin layer of sweet maltiness. These notes all head off into the finish with the addition of a pleasing black tea like sensation that brings the whole thing together. This beers is fresh, rich citrus, robust, pummeling hops and yet manages to create a semblance of balance too. Wow! I need a keg or two of this.

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 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.

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

I picked up a bottle of Anniversary Ale 2011 for $2.39 at The Lager Mill. It's a warm summer like night in Michigan, so a brew with some wheat and fruit in it sounds like a good choice. I been wanting to try this beer for a while now, I hope it lives up to my expectations. I heard Shorts has started dating there bottles but I don't see one on this bottle,2011 Vintage . Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a mini snifter.

A- The label on this beer is kind of odd looking, looks an old school Russian castle and a kings throne, I don't really understand what they were going for. It poured a deep dark ruby red color that was nice and unique looking, it pretty much looks blood red. It had two fingers worth of white head that died down to a thick ring that left some nice long lacing.

S- Wow, the aroma of this beer is all about citrus fruits and hops. It smells more like DIPA then a wheatwine. The hops seem to pretty floral and are mixed in with tons of citrus fruits like grapefruit, pineapple, mango, and most of all blood oranges, it smells like it could be a hoppy orange juice. Very little wheatwine aromas come through, just the sweetness you would expect from this style. I didn't detect any green peppercorns in the aroma.

T- The taste is pretty much like mixing a half glass of orange juice with a half glass of grapefruit juice with some floral hops thrown in there. The wheat malts show up in the flavor and are pretty subtle and quickly overpowered by all the citrus fruits I picked up in the aroma. Only when it starts to warm up can I pick up the green peppercorns, they are very subtle and add a slight spice complexity to this beer. It had a slightly bitter finish, for how hoppy this smelled I was sure it was going to have some DIPA like bitterness to it but it didn't and I liked that. The booze is hidden masterfully in this beer, no way you could tell this is almost 12% by the taste.

M- Sweet, medium bodied, and the carbonation was descent and was better then most shorts.

Overall I though this was one excellent beer. For this warm mid Michigan night I don't think I could have picked a better beer. To me everything about this beer screams warm weather, the citrus flavors were bold and in your face and I thought that was really good and unique. The blood orange was the most prevalent of the citrus fruits like the description on the bottle implies, the peppercorns were much more subtle and harder to pick out but they did add to the complexity of this beer. The only other Wheatwine I have had was Pilgrims Dole from New Holland, its hard to compare the two since Pilgrims Dole seemed to be much straight forward and truer to the style, while on this beer shorts seems to use the Wheatwine as a backbone to hold tons of hoppy and citrus fruit flavors normally associated with DIPA's, I expect Shorts to try something with a style nobody has tried before and this seems to go along with that just like it should. The drinkability of this beer was awesome, it went down really smooth and there was no way I would have guessed this was almost 12%, which could make it pretty devastating after two or three. I only bought one bottle but I am making sure to grab a six pack before they are all gone so I can have some during the summer. I think everybody should give this beer a try, it's just that good. This was one kick ass brew from Shorts, I love all the crazy shit you guys do to your brews, keep it up.

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

2011 vintage. 12 ounce bottle poured into a large wine goblet. An aggressive pour yields half a finger of peach-tinted head. Retention is moderate, though better than expected for such a high-gravity brew. A ring of lacing holds to the top of the glass and glides down as the beer disappears. The beer is mahogany colored with precious little translucence. I'm assuming the color is a result of the blood oranges, and it is a pretty sight.

Oranges manifest themselves way up front on the nose. It's a sweet, citrusy, alcoholic blending that works really well. Spicy hops snap nicely and only serve to compliment the fruity aroma herein. It is unlike any beer, wheatwine or otherwise, that I've put my nostrils to; but it's such a natural combination that I'm amazed nobody has thought to brew this before now.

The flavor follows suit. Sweet tangerine-like flavor is first to impact the tongue. This is accompanied by a nice dose of piney hops (hop varieties were wonderfully matched to this brew). The citrus and hops lay a wonderfully spicy groundwork that is formidably matched by the heft of the malt profile. It is malty to the point of being syrupy. As the beer slides to the back of the mouth, a nice literal kick of peppercorn is noted. It's enough that you know there's some pepper in there, but not so much that it detracts from the rest of what is going on. The primary flavors are intense to the point that you don't notice the alcohol unless you're really looking for it. For being so overblown, it has great balance.

It's tough not to have a nice mouthfeel with a beer this big, and Anniversary Ale does not disappoint. It's thick; it has a lot of alcohol which makes it velvety. The carbonation level is absolutely perfect. The citrusy nature of the brew actually makes it refreshing, easily the most refreshing and easy drinking brew in its weight class. It's supposed to be a sipper, but I'm failing to pause for very long between sips.

For the most part, Short's unorthodox concoctions are hit or miss affairs. This one is a big hit. In fact, it may be my new favorite in their seasonal lineup. It looks interesting, smells, tastes and feels great. And it's refreshing to boot. It's the most drinkable 10% beer I've ever sampled. Hats off to you, Short's.


The Two-Schlitz Scale: (reference my profile for an explanation)
I give two Schlitz about Short's Anniversary Ale. Here's to another great year of brewing.

Anniversary Ale from Short's Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 488 ratings.