Wizard's Winter Ale
Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.

Wizard's Winter AleWizard's Winter Ale
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English Strong Ale
Ranked #85
Ranked #43,793
3.54 | pDev: 13.28%
Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
New York, United States
Wizard's Winter AleWizard's Winter Ale
Reviews: 100 | Ratings: 146 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Lone_Freighter:
Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.99/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter, the appearance was a light amber color with a finger’s worth of white foamy head that dissipated at a nice pace. Stringy lace. The aroma had some caramel/toffee malt combining with some leather to earthiness. Pleasant ginger and then some woodiness. The flavor keeps the sweet malty tones forward and allows the ginger to come out as it warms. Faint malty to woody aftertaste. Sly wet malty finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a decent sipping quality about it. ABV feels good. Carbonation felt fine. Nice smoothness flowing over my tongue. Overall, nice English strong ale that I would have again and a good style to have in Winter.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Jason
3.05/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Patchy white lace, hazed tawny hue.

Smell: Butter Scotch candy and peach preserves. Slightly estery in the back.

Taste & Mouth Feel: Very smooth and creamy with a solid malt palate, hop bitterness is followed by a mildly astringent grain. Thin layer of diacetyl and fruitiness in the middle. Chalky yeast. Finishes sweet with more buttery undertones.

Drinkability & Notes: If this brew cleaned up its act it would be damn good Â… sadly it did not win me over at all.

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Photo of Brent
3.88/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured an interesting coppery amber. Sticky, rocky head with good staying power. Not a lot going on in the aroma - mildly sweet malt notes. Fairly malty with toffee and caramel, and just the barest hint of milk chocolate at the edge. Finished with a solid but rather blunt hops bitterness that lingered at the back of the tongue. Overall, quite English in character. I'm surprised to see that the abv is 6.3% - my impression was of a higher alcohol content. Overall, a pleasant beer, but fell short of its full potential.

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Photo of frank4sail
3.23/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not a ton of nose just some light hints of caramel as you wiff. Slightly off white (light tan) dense 1/4 inch head after the pour. Dark peach filtered look in the glass. Very dry earthy hop taste to the inital sip of the brew. The beer also has a crusty malt base to it as well. The mouth seems of medium to light thickness.. a little light and lacks the coating nature of many Old Ales I have had. Very dry on the finish. You will be left with a sandpaper tongue.

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Photo of Bighuge
3.43/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a nice looking shade of scarlet red. Some very slight chill haze is perceived. The beer is topped by a creamy and dense, long lasting ivory white head that leaves some nice rings of lace. The aroma is full of carmelized sugar. Also very fruity and a bit smoky and some butterscotch as well. The flavors of this beer do very little for me. Average is what I think. Diactyl is present lending a butterscotch flavor. There are also caramel tones. Some fruity off shoots from the yeast I believe. Mouthfeel is fairly high on the carbonation. Body is medium at best. For a strong ale, this lacks depth and flavor.

Gotta give some props to Davo for shipping this sample to me.

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Photo of Bierman9
3.98/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Interesting little Merlin-type wizard on the label of this 12oz bottle.

Color of the Wizard was a medium/dark copper, and it was fully transparent. Head was rocky and light tan in color. It remained in a creamy, pancake-batter type form for a bit, and laced up the glass quite nicely!
The aroma had a lot of toasty malt aspects to it, reminding me very much of an Altbier, perhaps LongTrail Double Bag as an example! I was expecting a combo of malty sweetness and hops. I guess this is more a Strong Ale than a Barley, eh?
The feel as it passed over the tongue left the tongue unscathed, though it was a hair on the thin side of medium for body.
Upon tasting this, I'm thinking Double Bag again. A toasty malt flavor combines with some toffee/caramel up front, but then a good whack of hops level the playing field rather quickly. The aftertaste is hops once more, and it is a pleasant, lasting buttery aftertaste, too.
Tasty, appealing bier. If available around my area I'd definitely quaff a few! Prosit!!

overall: 4.05
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | mouthfeel: 3.5 | drinkability: 4


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Photo of inebrius
4.5/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Glowing amber under a roof of fluffy bubbles drifting gobs of lace and cheer. Spicy fireside nose of hefty malt dusted with hops and comfort. Earth foots creamy caramel malt for a magical balance that soothes and excites. A choice brew for cold-weather quaffing.

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Photo of oberon
4.17/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P ours a light brown with a definant orange hue with almost no head but that was expected,aroma very orangy and also some chocolate thrown in there as well. Nice big malty beer with a caramel taste emerging right away with deep fruitiness that pierces right thru every other flavor the alcohol becomes more prevelant as it warms.A real nice winter brew pretty warming and flavorful.

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Photo of shirfan
3.92/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A tea-ish, translucent copper color with an average off-white head.

Aroma of spiced apple, confectionary sugar, and sweet baked goods.

Taste starts sweet, chewy, with a hint of spice and anise. Quickly gives way to an earthy hop bitterness, and finishes dry and yeasty, but not overly done. An almost orange chocolate note lurks in the background.

I've found that Middle Ages' choice of yeast has strained other brews, but in this one it's spot on, and enhances rather than detracts.

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Photo of doho95fu
3.33/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It is dark copper, with a thin cream colored head. It does leave some thin lacing. It smells smoky to me with hops and fruit. It has a taste that is hoppy and still tastes a little smoky to me. Good mouthfeel and drinkable. The smokiness was not expected and I do not know if that is the "real" taste here or just how I perceive a flavor I am not accustomed to.

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Photo of UnionMade
3.71/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a deep umbery amber, with a thich rich almond head riding atop. Clear, with some bubbling weaving it's way to the top. Good head retention, with some lacework.
Aroma is richly malty, with a pronounced ken goldings hopping. Very herbal and a touch grassy. Lots of esteriness, with a touch of butterscotch. Alcohol is present, skulking under the maltiness.
Flavor is powerful and malty, with a somewhat slick mouthfeel. Similar to Brakspear's Vintage Henley. Some caramel and biscuity maltiness. Hops are very herbal, coming through in the middle and finishing the sip with a strongly herbal bitterness. Light alcohol coming through in the end, providing a warming sensation in the throat. Solid estery flavors, with a bit of buttery caramel, some pear, apple, and a hint of plum.
Very smooth and rich. Right on, brothers.

Very, very awesome. This was my first Middle Ages beer, and I've been enchanted with their labels and the whole medieval thing. I didn't know what to expect, but i was pleasantly surprised to find that it's extremely british in style, all the way down to the particular hopping. I thought it tasted a lot like Brakspear Vintage Henley. Strong flavor, agressive hoppiness, a bit of alcohol taste, and a smooth sweetness. Right on, brothers.

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Photo of quasimoto
3.66/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Musty horse blanket aromas blended with fruity aromas of slight red berries. The malt comes up in the background and is slightly caramel-like. It finishes with notes of oak and some slight vanilla. The mouth feel starts off with a blend of bitterness, and strong carbonation. Finishes dry and sharp. Overall a very interesting beerand can be enjoyed if you really analyze it. Trust me you should. It is worth it.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.65/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Ruby caramel amber brown thine cream head specks of lacing. Aroma: English style malts winter warmer like caramel and butterscotch touch of earthy hops, with a slight spicy character. Taste: English varieties of malts give off a nice mix of toasty butterscotch sweetness and finishes with a mild bitterness, overall tame but well crafted English style winter warmer. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied slightly sticky perfect carbonation. Drinkability: Pays homage to other English brewers with a very nice rendition of a traditional old ale, tasty wouldn't pass sampling this one again in the future.

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Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color a unclouded deep brown with the head modest and frothy, the color a light tan as it evaporates, the lace forms a fine covering upon the glass. Sweet fruity nose and Ringwood yeast is quite noticeable, malts also right there. Start sweet, middle moderate in feel and the finish briskly carbonated and the hops pleasing and spicy, dry as a bone aftertaste, a good drinkable beer.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.05/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance - pours out to about one bony, crooked finger of head, tan and creamy and receding fast. A cidery reddish color with bubbles of sorcery working their way to the surface from the dungeons below. As the head recedes, it leaves a polka dot pattern on the Belgian glass.

Aroma - spicy and fruity at first. Kind of so-so actually. But then it settles down and this very interesting, almost chocolate aroma comes through, like tootsie rolls or something. Hmmmm, this wizard is crafty...

Taste - a rather tasty old ale. Some stout-like presence if I'm not mistaken. The chocolate notes, some smokiness (probably leftover from the last FireBall spell...), really add some interesting aspects to this beer's character. The malts are fine, but are overshadowed. Average carbonation followed by not so subtle reminder of the 6.3% abv (enhanced by some fruity sweetness), I pick up a hop element attempting to balance I suppose, but comes off more with a sour, almost acrid taste. About the only drawback here, too bad as that final taste puts a damper on the experience. Still, it's good.

Mouthfeel - has some body, but really is on the thinner side. Decent play in the mouth, but the lingering acridity is a negative to me.

Drinkability - 6.3% abv is a tad above normal but this is a very drinkable potion.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark ruddy amber/red with burnt orange edges. Aroma is very British in character with a few tea-like aromas mixed in with some nicely subdued ringwood yeast esterst. This stuff is definately still fruity and tea-like on the nost with a nice subdued hop aroma in the back of the nose as well. Taste is interesting and strong up front with the ringwood esters. The middle is bready/biscuity with a certain funk that really makes this beer interesting. The finish is a bit rough, with the subdued hop flavors mixing in with a somethwhat "hot" alcohol flavor. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, and this beer improves when it is allowed to warm up. Drinkability is good as well. Good, interesting, and another winner from MA.

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Photo of taez555
3.35/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer poured a dark amber body with a small off-white head.

A very fruity nose. Almost smells like the fresh produce section of a grocery store. Definitely a butterscotch sort of smell with touches of caramels and sugary fruit.

Taste is light to medium bodied. Taste is sort of all over the place. Caramel, butterscotch, biscuit, and fresh grainy vienna or munich type malt. Chewy and little bit creamy. Hop taste is present, but not in your face. A little earthy and little leafy. A firm bitterness shows up about half way through the sip and lingers on into the long finish.

Overall not to bad. Kind of a middle of the road winter warmer. Not quite old school american pale ale micro, not quite english pale, not quite winter warmer. It's drinkable, but I've come to expect more from this brewery.

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Photo of Hobbz
3.88/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful color of clear, deep, burgundy-amber. Somewhat sweet aroma, but barely imperceptible to me; some piney hits in the smell as well. Assertive malts within the malt-hop balance, but certainly not a malty beer in itself; hops serve merely as bittering and balance. More toward a fine English strong ale, and yummy.

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Photo of waughbrew
3.44/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber waves of grain-juice with a picturesque head that is very creamy, lasts a while, and laces a bit. Nice. Smells like rummy cinnamon butter. The apparent spicing and warmth makes me think of "holiday" celebrations with loved ones. Flavor is thick but with a spicy bitter bite that keeps the caramel candyishness from being cloying. When chilled, it has a bitter metallic finish that is not so pleasing, but upon warming it is very nice. Feel is heavy but again has the bitterness to pull it off nicely. This beer is exactly what I expected it to be, no more, no less. It didn't leave much of an impression, but it was enjoyable while it lasted.

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Photo of cbl2
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


A nice medium brown body with a thin white head perched atop.


A sweet star fruit quality is the predominant odor, with a definite herbaceous quality in the background.


Definite hop presence on this one, but there is an alcohol tinged malt presence in the background that hold it together. Hops are nicely herbal, and not extremely bitter as they can be, though finish is a little harsh.

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Photo of beernbbq
3.7/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice caramel malt base with a mildly hoppy and herbal aroma. I believe their must be some kind of herb or spice in this one. Has a nice drinkability but unfortuantely, mine was little too cold and I did not have a chance to let it warm up to see what happens. Another solid beer from Middle Ages and I will look for this again.

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Photo of nomad
3.38/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Wonderfully umber, it makes my glass clear with copper edges. Complemented nicely by a big pillowy head, strings of stain, and lots of slow lace. Smells of licorice, juniper, toasty scents of an earthy bread, fruity Ringwood esters, and burnt raisins.

Tastes rooty with a big hop snap, as toasty flavors shine underneath. Quite tangy, this beer has some flavors of raisins soaked in brandy but a long and very harsh roasty finish. The hops are on some crazy tangy sort - exact the same as a young bottle of Middle Ages' Druid Fluid.

Does not help to have a moderate mouthfeel with a sudsy texture. Seems like it needs some time to settle down, but will it do so well and should you have to?

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Photo of sulldaddy
3.08/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I am sampling this bottle at room temp in a pint glass. The beer pours a clear mahogany with some garnet tints and several streams of bubbles rise to the surface creating a fluffy off white head that foams up 3 cm even with a gentle pour. The aroma is a little subdued but I detect some caramel and light fruitiness, red grape and also some lite grassy hops. The head is fading very slowly to a sturdy surface layer. The first sip reveals an average body and fine yet fizzy carb that tingles on my tongue as I drink.
The flavor is also fairly mild. I get a bit of brown sugar up front and some caramel and red grape fruit that rolls to a lite piney hop finish that doesnt linger very long. Overall the beer is much milder and supressed than I would have expected. Thought there would be a bigger nose or flavor in here but it is pretty much not very exciting. I wouldnt buy it again, but wouldnt turn down a free one either.

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Photo of Gavage
3.17/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a slighlty hazy amber color with a wispy, spotty residue head. The aroma was mellow with some bitterness and spice. The flavor followed suite, as the spices (cinnamon, nutmeg most notible), orange zest, and malt were all well tamed and mellow.

This was medium bodied, had a slight crispness and dryness on the tongue. Dryness continued during the aftertaste. Overall an average drinkability due to the boredom that settled in before I finished this off. A good beer for a newbie expanding his/her tastebuds.

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Photo of clvand0
4.1/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to shippos for this one. Pours a standard amber color with a small head that dies off quickly and leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma has a slight hop presence with a buttery caramel character, as kmpitz2 stated. The flavor is very much like the aroma and finishes with a bitter kick at the very end. Very nice. Smooth and enjoyable.

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Wizard's Winter Ale from Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
Beer rating: 81 out of 100 with 146 ratings