Harpoon Winter Warmer - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon Winter WarmerHarpoon Winter Warmer

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627 Reviews

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Reviews: 627
Hads: 1,440
Avg: 3.17
pDev: 20.5%
Wants: 10
Gots: 183 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2000

When you bring a glass of this dark copper ale to your lips to take your first sip you will notice the aroma of cinnamon. There is no aromatic hop added that might overpower the distinct spice scent. The medium body of this beer is formed from caramel and pale malts. These create enough body to support the spices without making the beer excessively rich. Bittering hops are added to counter the sweetness of the malt and spice. The finish of the beer is a blend of cinnamon and nutmeg. The combination of these two spices results in a balanced, pumpkin-pie flavor.

22 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 627 | Hads: 1,440
Photo of gfreed
1.03/5  rDev -67.5%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

In the derby for bad beer from the most over-hyped East-cast brewer, until now I held that any brew from Sam Adams would by default take the trophy. Now I stand corrected: Boston Brewing must now share said trophy with Harpoon. This winter warmer ranks among the flattest, flavorless, most aromaless beer on today's market, and it's a fine addition to all of the other flavorless, aromaless beer that Harpoon brews. The only thing separating this beer from a glass of water is the price.

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Photo of becktone
1.18/5  rDev -62.8%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Eye: Nice enough to the eyes this beer is reddish copper in appearance and is clear. It has nice head retention and size. Heh Heh, looks better than it smells.

Nose: Wow!.... This beer smells like Red Hots candy, or Big Red chewing gum, whichever you prefer...for me its neither especially in a beer.The last beer I had that was this over spiced was A-B's Jack's Pumpkin Spice Ale. Damn it is strong too, almost room filling, this beer could give me a headache. Lay off the cinnamon, enough is enough.

Tongue: Really after smelling this, I am afraid what torture I am about to put my taste buds through. Some sweet malt at the beginning and end of this beer's flavor profile, then the over spiced spices take hold. This is a bad beer, I'm guessing no one at Harpoon has tasted this, if so, then who thought it would be a good idea to add this much shit to a beer. The label states winter warmer, sure some brewers like to spice to beer, but this is more like spices that have been beered. I mean I've eaten a spoonful of cinnamon before(a bet that I could swallow it within a minute $5 at stake...I won) but this is worse. I will never drink this beer again, I don't know what they were thinking out at Harpoon but this is more painful than an ass fucking.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: This beer is watery, it finishes with tons of spice, cinnamon chiefly, lingering in the mouth. This is not a drinkable beer, I recommend that all who value beer and your soul for that matter stay away from this beer. At this point I am glad that I received this beer for free(I'm not all that happy that I received it now that I've tasted it...I am dumber and my taste buds have regressed for having drunk this beer), I'd be wrought with pain if I actually paid for this crap.

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Photo of superdoopersauce
1.24/5  rDev -60.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Bought this out of a selection of various seasonal brews. I trust the Harpoon name, and I wanted to see what they could do with a delicious Christmastime ale.

Well, crack it open, take a big whiff. Interesting, smells like a lot of cinnamon. A lot. But maybe the taste is a bit mellower. Nope. It's an artificial, unsweetened, almost plastic leather taste on the center of your tongue, with a post-swallow dry bitterness that comes from what seems like "stale" malt, rather than any hops. You can smell this beer (after pour) from a few feet away... it's sitting on my desk right now, glass nearly full, because I could only manage to take 3 drinks of the stuff. It's a very dank, old-basement sort of beer, reminds me of unwashed clothing and dust bunnies.

I think they overdid it with the flavors, big-time.

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Photo of nas5755
1.29/5  rDev -59.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1


This beer looks good. A nice clean clear caramel colored beer with a nice head, good retention and a nice head. An overly spiced aroma. The beer is even more overly spiced, in a gross way. To much xmas spices, slightly chewy. Just not good. Bad mouth-feel. I cant drink this.

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1.41/5  rDev -55.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Really? This a beer that never needed to happen. My girl bought this and I tried one, what a mistake. The color and the head are nothing special. The nose is of cinimon and nutmeg, not what I really want in my beer. The only way I can describe the flavor is by saying it is like shoving a peice of pumkin pie in a Harpoon IPA. Please, by all means, avoid this beer!

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Photo of BigD1972
1.41/5  rDev -55.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

This was a very disapointing beer. It was like drinking a christmas scented candle from my wifes candle collection.
I heard good thing from some people about this beer but I now question their judgement.
Harpoon IPA is a good choice, but I would stay away from the winter warmer if I were you.

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Photo of Lerxst
1.49/5  rDev -53%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

A-Pours copper with a small head that faded fast and left no lacing.

S-All I can smell is spice. Nothing else comes through. My beer shouldn't smell like my wife's spice cabinet.

T-Taste is all spice as well. No malt or hops to speak of. Its just all spice, and it doesn't taste good.

M-Thin, watery and harshly carbonated.

D-I got about half the glass down before it was a drain pour.

I've enjoyed other beers from Harpoon, but this one is a one trick pony that is not impressive. The spice blend is awful and thats all there is to this beer. I won't drink this again.

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Photo of xXTequila
1.52/5  rDev -52.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

The cinnamon and nutmeg in this is way to overpowering. It smelled like oatmeal cookies and had a biscuity, bannana bread taste. This was so sickenly sweet it makes it hard to drink.
This was a big disapointment since I so far have loved all the beers I've tried by Harpoon.

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Photo of matty
1.54/5  rDev -51.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Gold colored beer with aroma of cinnamon and nutmeg.Taste was extreme cinnamon and very little else.This is the first beer in my 35 years that I couldn't finish and had to pour down the drain.I don't know what makes this brewery think that people want to drink something that tastes like cinnamon scope.Yuuuuck.

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Photo of GobieESQ
1.54/5  rDev -51.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

With the holiday season upon us, sometimes the mood strikes us to make impulse decisions. Unfortunately for me, Harpoon Winter Warmer was one of these decisions.

In the pint glass the beer is a deep amber with no head. Upon first sniff I knew I was in way over my head. The bouquet is somewhere between your Uncle Al's eggnog and the gingerbread factory. The nutmeg scent is so overpowering that when I returned to my seat at the table a friend questioned, "What smells like Christmas?"

The nutmeg overpowers the beer and completely destroys any other tastes that might have been present. If there were hops in the beer they were negligible and added most likely as an afterthought.

Leave this one on the shelf this Christmas and go find out what Uncle Al spiked the eggnog with.

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Photo of Manosbeeroffate
1.58/5  rDev -50.2%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Leftover christmas beer, do people actually like this? Pours a nice dark tan color but that's about the only good of this. Smells? Like cloves, weird plastic scent. Tastes not much better, as described in the smell with a odd banana aftertaste. Overall....don't buy don't drink, and for me this is the first of a six pack. I spent good money on this so I'm gonna set aside or chill very cold then chug it. Not worth your time or money, shame on you Harpoon!!

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Photo of afdempse
1.6/5  rDev -49.5%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Terrible... I am shocked that this beer was produced by Harpoon, a brewery I respect highly as most of their beers are extremely well-done.

The appearance was good, nice carbonation, but the smell threw me off immediately. It smelled like a truckload of spice extract got overturned on the highway, and the hazmat team was late to the clean-up.

The taste confirmed my initial suspicions. Who approved of this beer being produced and distributed? Does this appeal to someone? Was it an accident, and if so, will there be a recall? I can't imagine anyone enjoying this level of artificial spice flavoring in their beer. I immediately ate some bread and drank a stout afterward to try and get the flavor out of my mouth. I would not recommend this beer unless they change the recipe significantly. Avoid...

P.S. I did not see the very fine print on the label that reads "natural flavoring" until after purchasing it. Buyer beware.

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Photo of Mudpuppet
1.62/5  rDev -48.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

I don't know what to say about this beer. I am normally so happy with Harpoon's offerings. I got this this evening when I was out and I had to send it back. Normally I can suck it up and drink it but this was very spicy. Almost a sweet quality to it with nutmeg and pumpkin pie type spices. The mouthfeel is okay and the appearance but nothing else is worthwhile. Sorry Harpoon this is a let down. I will continue to drink your beers but never Winter Warmer again.

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Photo of beerinmorning
1.64/5  rDev -48.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

This beer could be the nastiest p!ss I have ever had the misfortune of putting in my mouth.

Here's why:

The smell should be cinnamon or nutmeg, but it really smells like eggnog. That's not a bad thing, per se. If the beer would have tasted like egg nog, or cinnamon or nutmeg. But it doesn't. I tasted like bananas. And it doesn't taste enough like banana for it to be a redeeming factor.

The mouthfeel is was VERY thin. The lacing was almost non-existent. It was very under-carbonated.

In the end, there was really no saving grace for this beer. It didn't have any kind of convincing flavor to it; at the same time, the mishmash of flavors it did have totally covered up everything that is enjoyable about beer in the first place.

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Photo of parkeak0
1.65/5  rDev -47.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

This, I hate to say, really isn't very good. The spice is entirely too powerful, it's cloyingly sweet... everything is out of whack and the concept of balance seems to have been lost on Harpoon's brewmaster on this one. Very glad I had the sense to grab a single instead of springing for a sixer. A real shame, as I quite like several other beers brewed by Harpoon.

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Photo of jrallen34
1.68/5  rDev -47%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I drank this from a 12oz bottle into an Orval glass.

The beer pours a clear watery medium brown with some amber. The head is light tan, very watery and gone right away.

The aroma is super spicy, way to overpowering. There is a ton of nutmeg and cinnamon.

The taste is all nutmeg and cinnamon and ton of sweetness. The feel is light.

Overall, this is beer is terrible, way to much spice, and not drinkable at all.

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Photo of BeerSox
1.69/5  rDev -46.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

12oz bottle into nonic.

Clear amber hue with a one finger light tan head that slowly settles to a thin cap.

The first thing I noticed about this beer is the strong cinnimon aroma. It smells like Red Hots candy.

It tastes like Mike & Ike's old hot candies. It's a little watery too, so all you really taste is the spices, and a bit of malt at the end oncer the spices finally fade. I guess the finish is like gingerbread or something.

They way overdid the spices. It's almost undrinkable. From the malts that I could actually taste, I think this one would be decent if it didn't taste like Big Red gum. Not recommended. If you want a "wintery" beer from Harpoon, grab one of their stouts.

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Photo of BigIrishman
1.7/5  rDev -46.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Poured into pint glass

Appearance: Nice clear amber, white head that is gone before you know what happened. Leaves a bit of lace.

Smell: Now I'm pretty open to all smells, but even upon cracking this one open my nose was overwhelmed with cinnamon. Once I actually pour it, I found that there is a tiny bit of malt in there, but the cinnamon strangles it before it gets too far.

Taste: I think a cinnamon bomb just went off in my mouth, worst part is it left a ton of residual damage. There is also a burny after taste (like big red gum).

Mouthfeel: Light to medium, but I swallowed as quick as possible to stop the overload.

Drinkability: Refer to taste section above.

Notes: I've liked everything Harpoon has made to this point, I guess even real quality breweries have there version of SA cranberry lambic.

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Photo of funktard
1.77/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Appearance: Good color, dark orange body. looks pretty tasty. the head dissipated kind of strangely, but that was probably a result of the pour, not of the beer itself.

Smell: Tones of what is about to come. I'm sure that I'm biased against it. Huge cinnamon smell.

Taste: Totally unbearable for me. All the beer was overpowered by the spices. And the aftertaste lingered and was just horrible. After the first couple sips, I wanted it to be over.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy. Probably the highpoint of the beer.

Drinkability: The mouthfeel is great, but the taste it leaves just makes this one hard to finish. I can't really even imagine drinking more than one.

I am not sure that I've had a beer this bad before. This is actually just offensive for me to drink. Maybe I had a bad sample, but the aftertaste and finishing this one of one of the more difficult things to do.

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Photo of dmamiano
1.82/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

The beer poured a beautifull deep amber, almost reminiscient of a red ale. Big head...the lacing followed the beer down the glass.
Smell was not what beer should smell like....nothing but cinnamon and spices overwhelming the nose. No hops. No malt.
Taste was as bad as the smell..way too overspiced with cinnamon and nutmeg seemed to be detected as well.
Beer should not taste like this...hints of spice are nice, but this overwhelming "in your face" dumping of spices in beer is way over the top.

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Photo of cabsandking
1.84/5  rDev -42%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

Nice amber color with just a bit of lace and a thick crown. Holy hot cinnamon oil! Cinnamon and nutmeg extract is so overwhelming that you can feel it singeing your nasal cavity...and maybe some ginger and honey. The is Christmas potpourri, with flavors of nutmeg, dry cinnamon bark, ginger, and clove that absolutely dominate. Some sweetness and tartness late in the finish, but almost astringent. The spices particularly cinnamon and nutmeg linger on far too long. Descent mouthfeel and carbonation. Cinnamon and nutmeg is way over the top here as it really just covers up what might be a good beer or maybe its a terrible beer...who knows? This does speak of Christmas...the bad part of Christmas...its like Black Friday stuffed in my mouth, all business and no soul.

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Photo of jackorain
1.84/5  rDev -42%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

A-Amber, clear, off-white 3/4 inch head, nice retention and nice lace.

S-Smells of cinnamon and allspice and nutmeg and clove with some doughy malts. Really strong sweet spices

T-Over the top spices, allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon and clove. cinnamon is the strongest. taste like cinnamon tea. really awful

Light to medium body an soda like fizz

D-no way, was a dump after two sips.

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Photo of Portertime
1.85/5  rDev -41.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Harpoon stayed true to the winter warmer style with much spices added to this beer. It poured a very clear honey color. Aromas of mostly cinnamon, some nutmeg, and baked apples came about upon first smell. The taste was overpoweringly cinnamon, which produced a slight heat on my taste buds. This did not leave too much room for any other flavor besides a little hop bitterness to even things out a little. This brew is definitely for cinnamon lovers and spice addicts with a little cold weather drinkability.

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Photo of ricchezza
1.86/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

A - Very clear dull gold/copper.

S - Smells like a fruit cake. malty and spicey. Prominent cinnamon tones. (The girlfriend says it smells like banana).

MF - light & crispy.

T - Too much spice. A not nearly subtle taste I can't place (untill I read the label... nutmeg). Lightly malted and hopped. This is all spice.

D - This one is not at all for me; but if you like fruit cake you might dig this.

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Photo of damjadi
1.86/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Consumed during my visit to Boston.

Appearance: Copper (like the roofs of many a Boston building).

Aroma: SPICY.

Taste: This pumpkin-pie tasting monstrocity is no reason to give thanksgiving!

Mouthfeel: I felt like tearing my tongue from my mouth to end the experience.

Drinkability: If it was the last beer on earth... And it was the end of November.

Overall: To quote Colonel Kurtz, "The horror... THE HORROR!!!"

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Harpoon Winter Warmer from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
73 out of 100 based on 627 ratings.