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

99 Reviews
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Wizard's Winter AleWizard's Winter Ale

Brewed by:
Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
New York, United States

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bierman9 on 11-15-2001

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Reviews: 99 | Ratings: 140
Photo of inebrius
4.5/5  rDev +27.8%
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 JoeyBeerBelly
4.37/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, served in a pint glass.

A - clear, light amber color with a low white head that thinned to a coating, leaving a good deal of lace.

S - sweet aromas of malt and vanilla.

T - mildly sweet tasting brew, rich caramel malt and vanilla bean flavor, slight oak aged bourbon alcohol taste as it warms (both in the glass and the drinker, alike!).

M - medium bodied with very mild carbonation.

D - good brew, easy to drink.

Final Note: Wizard's Winter Ale is a brew that will definitely warm you, enjoy!

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
4.24/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Mahogany, with a small head, visible carbonation and very little lacing.

S - Faint, but very good. Apple cider, white white and slight mulling spices.

T - Sweet caramel malt, slight apple, white grapes, cinnamon and allspice. A very slight bitter finish. Delicious.

M - Very smooth, slight carbonation felt on the throat nothing too bad though.

D - Very nice. This is a great winter ale. I could go for several more of these, shame they aren't readily available in my area.

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Photo of oberon
4.17/5  rDev +18.5%
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 clvand0
4.1/5  rDev +16.5%
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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Photo of erica
4.08/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

well I'll tell you this- I've been sitting/walking around the house cold with a blanket wrapped around me for a few hours, and finally now i am getting quite warmed up. Thanks, Wizard! Bubbles the kitten at Middle Ages said I'd definitely like this one, and to please rub her tummy some more... So I did and I took home a bottle of this. Looks a bit like the colour of weak tea- orange/reddish brownish. Small, off-white head of tiny bubbles. there's a crescent moon of no head in there. kind of cool. It smells a bit funky- sourish, grassy but in a dirty kind of way... not the best in my opinion. Tastes much better though, yeah. Not dirty, but clean like the snow outside while yer sitting in front of the fireplace with the blankets thrown in a pile next to you cos yer all warmed up and cozy. It almost tastes a bit grapey actually. Dry finish, very dry. Very good. Mouthfeel is just the perfect amount of carbonation, very nice. Drinkability--- good, but it would get to me after a while, as in, I would pass out from the heat. But in a good way. I recommend the Wizard if yer cold and need some warming up.

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Photo of Hefe
4.07/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Middle Ages Wizard's Winter Ale pours a hazy amber/brown with an inch or so of tan head. The aroma is mostly malt and spice, with a bit of a peach-blossom thing in the background. The taste has a prononced fruitiness along with the rich malty backbone, mostly peach/plum, no real bitterness, rich but not sweet or cloying. Delicious!

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Photo of CBFanWish
4.07/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A hazey amber colour with a thick head that slowlt dissipates to a fine white lace. The scent was of citrus hops and nutmeg. Very nice. The taste was very fruity, it had a lemon taste to it. It was Very much of the season. Nutmeg and coreander was what I got. It also had a nice bitter bite to it from what I think was cascade hops. A very nice ale.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.05/5  rDev +15.1%
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 DagFishHead
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark amber body. Tightly-bubbled, 2-finger, off-white head has good retention and fantastic lace.
Smell: Big malt with some earthiness and alcohol. Nice, clean English-style nose.
Taste: Big malt, but surprisingly crisp. Slightly yeasty. That classic stale ale taste followed by a semi-dry hop finish
Mouthfeel: Low carbonation feel. Big, full, malty chew.
Drinkability: A nice Strong Ale.. this style usually has me bailing out after a pint... but in this case, pour me another! Middle Ages continues to impress the hell out of me.

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Photo of ppoitras
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12ozer, purchased at Oliver's Beverage, Albany, NY, as part of a group of Middle Ages singles.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, frothy 1" light tan head formed, which laced well. Brew is an amber hue and has a pleasant malty aroma, almost smells like a bag of pellets from my parent's grain bin. Taste is surprisingly up-front with hops that were not apparent in the nose, and rounds out with the grains that I expected. Not often you get surprised like that. reasonably well balanced with malt and hops, but the malt wins the battle here by the time of the swallow. Mouthfeel is a little rough, but overall a nice brew.

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Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark amber color with a 1/4" off-white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a sweet malty scent with the fruitiness of Ringwood yeast. The taste is good. It is a smooth drinking malty brew with light hopping and a fruity yeast finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a good seasonal. It has great malt character; a fine sessions ale.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev +13.6%
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 Bierman9
3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
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 BuckeyeNation
3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reddish bronze with orange peel highlights. The head is light beige with a yellowish hue and is creamysoft, yet sticky enough to lay down a decent amount of lace in interconnected rings. It also has a pretty impressive lifespan, making aroma assessment difficult at first.

The nose is malt-dominant with butterscotch and buttery toffee front and center. Hops are tough to appreciate aroma-wise and the spices, if they're present, are weak at best. If forced to guess, I'd say that something 'sweet' was used, such as nutmeg or mace. I love aromas in the brown sugar/butterscotch/caramel family, so this is a nose that appeals to me.

Wizard's Winter tastes pretty much like it smells. Chocolate/carob notes are present on the palate to a greater extent than they were in the nose and the beer is more bitter and less sweet than anticipated. It's also more spicy... cinnamon perhaps? The body/mouthfeel starts out medium in heft, but loses its way a little by mid-mouthful and finishes somewhat thin and harsh (especially for the style).

Because WWA seems like one of those beers that will meld and smooth out with warming, I'll let it sit for a spell. <time passes> The flavor does improve as the temperature rises, but the body doesn't really respond as I had hoped it would. I wish the faint metallic flavor would fade, but it isn't bothersome.

Wizard's Winter Ale is a pretty good winter warmer. Even though the body/mouthfeel could be improved, there isn't much else with which to find fault. Thanks to HappyHourHero for the bottle.

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Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +11.4%
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 shirfan
3.92/5  rDev +11.4%
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 RocPorterFanatic
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a rich Copper color with a full creamy head and lots of lacing.

S - Sweet and full of spices

T - Malty with a bit of hops, not overly bitter, not too mild. Just about in the middle

M - Lots of carbonation. not alot of lingering taste

D - My 1st winter ale of the year and it did not disappoint. Could easily sit and enjoy several. Definitely a session beer for late fall, early winter

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Photo of Hobbz
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
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 irishkyle21
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wizards Winter has a good head on its shoulders and doesn't give in to the temptation of dropping into nothingness. Good lacing. Has a (mostly)clear copper color.

Smells of sweet caramel malt, fruits and yeasty.

The taste starts of malty then some fruits and yeast jump on the taste bandwagon.

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Photo of Brent
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
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 HappyHourHero
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light tan/dirty white foamy head. It's fading fast, I can see it shrink, wouln't last a minute. The liquid is glowing, redish mahogany in color. There's a bit of lace hanging around after the first few sips. It smells a bit sweet and malty, with a hint of butterscotch, and just a little alcohol. The taste at first is rather malty, which fades off to a mild bitterness. Not sure how it compares to other strong ales, but this is pretty drinkable. It is flavorful without any overpowering flavors, nice balance.

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Photo of TheBCrew
3.87/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass with 2 fingers of off-white head that dissipates quickly leaving some lacing. Light, clear caramel color and an aroma of citrus and butterscotch. Tastes of grapefruit, caramel, and a clean citrus finih. Medium-bodied highly drinkable beer.

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Photo of PEBKAC
3.85/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Two unmarked, surely a bit past-date bottles into my 25oz glass mug.

Pretty, gurgling pour. Foggy, dull orange/amber body. Big, lumpy, off-white clumps of foam fill nearly half the glass, leaving isolated bits of lace here & there as it falls.

Smell is crispy bran flakes upfront, followed by some butter toffee. Slight banana esters, a touch of peppery hops, & a doughy center keep my attention.

Crusty bread & pinching, leafy greens first come to mind. Mild, pleasing orange rind, dry toast, & a sprinkling of yeast. Not much ugly at all coming from the ringwood yeast.

Feel is nice. Moderately carbonated with a bit of body, but eventually turning thin & very dry.

Not sure why it's sold as a "winter ale", as it's not full bodied, a stout, spiced, aged in xxx, big on abv., etc. etc. Whatever, it's pretty decent alternative to all that stuff when the store is flooded with it. :)

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Photo of Sammy
3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

fruity ringwood Yeast and multiple hops and good dose of malt. Peaty. More sweet than bitter, but dry finish and acidic citrus there. Nutmeg and cinammon Decent warmer and drinkable in bottle form..
Unique for this brewry coppery color, less aggressive hops so maybe shelf life less.

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Wizard's Winter Ale from Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
3.52 out of 5 based on 140 ratings.
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