Mild Winter | Goose Island Beer Co.

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Mild WinterMild Winter
905 Ratings
Mild WinterMild Winter

Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States

Style: English Dark Mild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Toffee color, dark bread aroma, caramel and rye flavor, medium-light body.

Added by botham on 08-17-2008

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 905 |  Reviews: 372
Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

tried this on-tap and was pleasantly surprised. a clear chestnut brown with a creamy light tan head and lacing. aroma was nuts, holiday spices, and brown sugar. taste followed suit w/a nice rich malt sweetness for a session beer, but managed not to be cloying despite a minimal hop presence. nicely carbonated and a good body for a lower abv beer, also complex and interesting with the spicy rye. overall rich and malty for this abv. well-balanced and could have a few of these.
pretty good via bottle as well.

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Photo of Billolick
3.98/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ouncer, bottled on dating on the label. Pours clear darker amber, light tan head that leaves real nice, fine well developed lace. A touch of chocolate, light winter spice and toasty bread in the nose. Smooth, eminently easy drinking, session able offering. Light spice, toast, mild rye and lightly roasted malts. Nice stuff. Pleasant winter sessioner.

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Photo of reallyhoppie
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass where it produced an amber/copper color with a 1cm tan head that didn't last long. Nice lacing though.

Smells faintly of malt and sweet rye bread.

Tastes wonderfully smooth and creamy for a rye. Mild malts and hoppiness, it's the creaminess that makes this beer.

Decent mouthfeel that seemed to get a lot better as the beer went on.

A very drinkable beer. I hosted my family Thanksgiving this year and when I do that I always get a lot of Miller Light and something decent for myself. I ended up having to go back to the liquor store to get more Mild Winter because that's all anyone was drinking.

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Photo of DrJay
4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to wintermute for the bottle. Enjoyed on NYE, 2008.
Crystal clear coppery red with a short beige cap. Very sticky with good head retention and sheets of lace. Earthy hop aroma, faint chocolate and roast, toasted malt, biscuit, mild spice and caramel. Subdued bitterness with mild hopping, earthy with a bit of floral character. Caramel and oily rye flavour, some dark malts, plus mild spice in the finish and lingering malts. Just under medium bodied, moderate carbonation, light dryness, a bit of an oily texture. Very good. Lots going on, but everything stayed balanced.

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Photo of Jekster
3.99/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The beer pours a dark mahogany to dark cherry brown with only a slight off white lacing of head.

Smell: I smell caramel with a slight rich spiciness. There are hints of walnut and pine with a slight hint of orange zest. In the background is the smell of smoky extinguished campfire (in a good way) along with a slight musty smell (again, in a good way).

Taste: This beer has a robust smoky initial flavor followed by a sweet mango fruit flavor. The beer lingers into more of a mellow mango flavor and finishes with a distinct nutty after tone. There is a slight spiciness from the rye along with a very festive plum and cherry flavor. Despite all the prominent fruit flavor the beer is still very savory and does not come across as overly sweet.

Mouthfeel: This beer has a light to medium body with a medium to medium high carbonation. It is easy on the pallet and thirst quenching.

Drinkability: This beer is very drinkable for people looking for a beer that has a malt and fruit forward profile. It's easy mouthfeel and body make it pleasent and I could see myself drinking quite a few of these beers at home around a nice fire.

OVERALL IMPRESSION: When I saw this beer at the store I had high hopes. I would say it did not blow me away but did not make me unhappy. I would easily go out to buy a six pack to drink at home or share with my friends for fun. I think the predominant dried fruit flavors are appropriate for a "winter" beer while not being overly sweet and unapproachable by someone who prefers dry, hoppy beers. If you are an English Ale fan or enjoy a good Brown Ale, definitely give this brew a try for something different and unique.

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Photo of Mdog
3.88/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear amber, good head.

Smell: Mildly sweet bread.

Taste: Caramel sweetness, nice spicy rye kick that's not too strong.

Drinkability: Seems quite good, I only had a single to try.

Called an American Mild on the label, this is another nice beer that doesn't bludgeon you over the head with alcohol or strong flavors, just a nicely balanced drinkable beer. Goose Island seems to be moving up my list of breweries.

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Photo of mdm46410
3.9/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle (Bottled on 11/11/08) and served in a pint glass. This beer poured a lightly hazy copper brown hue with a quickly fading head of tan foam that settled into a lasting ring. Decent lacing. The aroma was made up of sharp rye, caramel, a bit of chocolate, a hint of dark fruit skins, and very mild noble hops. The flavor consisted of spicy rye, rich caramel, toasted nuts and grain, and a very mild, earthy hop note. Rich and malty. The mouthfeel was medium-bodied and had crisp, moderate carbonation. A nicely made winter session ale. I've already gone through a couple sixes this winter.

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Photo of CHSLBrew
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

A-Clear semi-dark amber beer. Tan head on top, moderate retention as it reduced down to patchy bubbles.

S-Rye spiciness comes through with a mild bready malt character underneath.

T-Prominent spiciness showcases the rye character, while a nice and hearty malty structure, nutty and toasty, keeps everything in line. Bitterness is present and melds in well with the other flavors.

M-On the lighter side of a medium body, in a refreshing way. Medium-high carbonation.

D-It's enjoyable with it's smooth flavor and wintery taste and feel. I'd go for this one again.

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Photo of lhaqq
3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Copper-ruby body with a fluffy tan head.
S: Some corn and malts. A but of rye but not much from what I can tell.
T: Rye malts a lot more apparent up front in the taste. Shifts into a subtly sweet malt ending.
M: Good level of carbonation, but nothing terribly interesting.
D: Alright, but nothing amazing. Think I prefer Bear Republic's Hop Rod for a rye beer.

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Photo of budgood1
4.26/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours out an extremely dark auburn colour with a an brown egg shell coloured head that permanently skims the top of the beer and leaves some fine lace. light dark malty aroma...some choco and toffee aromas and some light spiciness. a light hop aroma is detectable, also. the flavour of this brew is of the mild variety, pleasantly malty with a definite spicy kick due to the rye used. the spiciness lingers on and then gives way to a herbal and earthy hop bitterness that seems so perfect for this ale. it really tastes good. the body is medium....and the mouthfeel crisp and refreshing. about perfect for this take on the mild or bitter style. finishes dry. drinkability is fantastic. definitely in the english tradition with a wry (rye) twist. loved it!

what makes this even better is that it has a quenching aspect to that would make it a perfect quaffer after an outdoor winter activity where a thirst may have been worked up. certainly sessionable...crazy quaffable...fantastically flavourful. another great beer from GI.

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Photo of morimech
4.03/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, dark copper with two fingers of white head that had excellant retention. There is a lot of lacing left on the glass. Has a nice aroma. The rye definately is detected in the aroma along with some additional spice from the hops. Interesting flavor as well. Malty base with a little spice from the rye and hops. Hints of ginger. Bitterness is low. Mild flavor but overall interesting. Lighter body with moderate carbonation. It has a nice semi-creamy texture. A little more flavor than a typical mild ale. The addition of rye malt was a good choice. Very sessionable. I might want something a little more robust for a winter ale but this is still a good one.

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Photo of keoki182
3.92/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear medium brown with thinly lacing head. Aroma immediately brought to mind cereal from my childhood...cocoa puffs or cocoa pebbles, but strangely the beer itself didn't smell like cocoa. Something triggered that in my memory, however. The sip was bracing with its incredible rye bitterness. After a few more sips, the rye smoothed out into a very drinkable winter. In the beginning of the taste, there is something similar to very sweet tangerine, but it quickly disappears into malty richness. Nice dryish finish.

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Photo of roadhouse
4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appears a nice crystal clear dark copper color with a two inch off-white head that continues to rise due to the lively carbonation. Leaves some moderate lacing.

Aroma is sweet with caramel notes mostly, with the rye coming through as a mild spiciness. Not overly complex but very nice.

Taste is sweet and caramelly up front with a stong fruity note that diminishes throughout sips that comes in midway through that is straight up delicious, with a mild spiciness towards the end from the rye. Simple and delicious.

Mouthfeel is medium-light, with a nice smoothness, that is slightly crisp. Nice and creamy.

This one is a definite winner from GI. Highly sessionable beer that I enjoy even more than Honker's or IPA. I will be putting down a few of these tonight they are just too good.

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Photo of BretSikkink
4.05/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Amber-brown in color, with a tanned head. Lots of highlighting, okay, swirly retention, and some pretty fair legs for style.

The aroma is relatively complex but not hugely aromatic. My first thoughts were of mild barley malt sweetness, a light spiciness, and maybe a touch of apple. Peppery hops complement the rye.

Definitely malty, but not overpoweringly sweet. There is a great balance with the sweet barley and peppery rye flavors that puts this above the rest in this category. A little bit of toffee here, and a finish of apple.

Dry finish with a hint of spicing; medium in the body. Not a bad little sipper at all - Mild Winter is very well balanced, if not terribly exciting.

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Photo of prototypic
4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: This one pours a really nice looking clear, bronze color with a strong garnet hue. It's topped with vanilla colored head that reaches two fingers tall. Retention was good and a very nice sticky coat of lace lined the glass.

Smell: The nose is good, but a little lacking in strength and depth. It's mostly malty and sweet smelling. Smells like a good mix of caramel and toasted malts. There is a distinct spicy aroma to it which is easily attributed to the rye. There's a faint yeasty or doughy aroma. All in all, it's good, but could be improved.

Taste: The flavor profile mimics the nose and suffers from similar (small) flaws. It is indeed sweet and malty. Toasted malts taste a little stronger than the caramel variety, but not by much. Rye spiciness attacks the palate and adds a lot of zeal to the flavor. I like it. A yeasty biscuit-like aroma emerges toward the end. It's not strong, but is noteable. Hops are faint and could use a little bump. It finishes spicy and dry. It could use a little more depth and character, but this is a solid beer.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It features a medium body and holds together well. Nice smooth feel. Carbonation is active and prevents it from reaching a creamy, lush feel. But, it's good. Drinkability is actually very good. It goes down very easy, has a nice flavor, and features a modest abv. I could happily handle a few of these.

Mild Winter is a nice addition to the winter arsenal of great brews. It's unique and I like that aspect of it a lot. It could use a little work across the board, but not much. This is a nice beer as it is. Certainly one I'll pick up again during this time of year. Recommended.

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Photo of Redrover
4.13/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown longneck with a bottled on date of 10/27/08. Poured into a pint glass, the beer is a medium brown with subtle red highlights. There is a big creamy beige head & great lacing.

The nose is of malts, citrus, caramel and you can also pick-up the rye which adds a spice note.

The beer tastes of lightly roasted malts, some citrus and the rye which adds a nice finish. The beer is slightly bitter with great balance. It's a bit earthy and a bit juicy. Nice combo of flavors.

The mouth is pleasantly thickish and creamy. Very easy beer to session. Great taste and low ABV add up to a winning brew. I'm glad to see this one added to the seasonal rotation!

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Photo of wheatyweiss
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint, Mild Winter is a nice dark rust color with a full head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is of strong caramel malt and dark roasted grain. Flavor is exactly to style. Roasty and grainy, with a mild hop bite. The Rye makes it's way to the front as the predominant grain and the sourness tells you so. Dusty and husky as it should be.

Excellent and refreshing, Goose Island fails to disappoint.

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Photo of jar2574
3.32/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A rye beer. That's something new for me. It does smell slightly like a rye whiskey, but there isn't much to the smell. The appearance is only average. Flat, little head, brownish color.

The beer is nice though. Sweet, almost syrupy. Not a lot of hops or malts detected. I think it's loaded with wintery spices, so much that it drowns out any maltiness or hopiness. Feels a little artificial, and lacks earthiness as a result.

Doesn't sit that well after a few, because the sweetness will get to you eventually.

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Photo of russpowell
3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up in Wichita, pours caramel with 2 fingers of cream colored head. Average head retention

S: Slight toasted malt & not much else

T: Peppery rye, dryness & a bit brown bread up front. Rye flavors dominate as this warms along with a bit of grainyness & dryness. Finishes crisp & dry

M: Medium bodied, low carbonation, crisp

Drinks alright, could do a few with a Reuben sandwich to be sure, other wise, I could take or leave this

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Photo of larsee01
4.18/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz poured into Hoegaarden hexagonal pint glass

A--Beautiful, heady pour. Frothy off-white head with decent carbonation. Nice translucent reddish-brown color.

S--Sweet and mild scent. Tiny coffee notes. Malty and reminiscent of sweet pumpernickel with the slightest sour.

T--Very mild bitter hits first. Malt definitely prominent, but with just a tickle of spicy hop for great balance. Rich, bready goodness the lingering nuance. Picking up a touch of graininess and ghosts of iron. Smooth and balanced.

M--Again, smooth. Creamy and medium-bodied, but I'll be damned if this doesn't fly down the hatch. Perfect viscosity on the palate.

D--Unlike the winter we are having here in Chicagoland (home of Goose Island), this is indeed a "mild" winter ale. Not a lot of the bitterness, full-bodiedness or spices you've come to expect in a winter ale. Mild as advertised. Almost like a fall special. Surprisingly good, and goin' down easy!

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.03/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ahh, it's clear to me now. I couldn't figure out the spiciness in this beer until I went to write this review and saw that it was a rye beer. I'd never expect that of a "mild", so good twist Goose Island. Yes, now it all makes sense. I've just been over-run by spicy beers this season that I couldn't see the tree for the forest.

It poured a clear, very deep amber-almost-chestnut body with a ruby cast and orange highlights. The creamy white head held remarkably well, and it left rings of lace throughout the glass. The nose was restrained, but clearly malty, and oddly gently spicy. In the mouth it was medium, or perhaps medium-light, but with a dextrinous edge. The carbonation was fine-bubbled and at a moderate level, and it was gently fizzy but then creamy across the palate once warmed. The flavor followed the nose, and it was mainly malty with a soft caramel edge and a bit of spice. I searched for something to reveal what it was, not exactly finding any cinnamon, or ginger, or any other flavor, but got nothing. It was simply peppery spice. I thought that it was a very mild blend of spices that held steady in the background and didn't really reveal itself. Obviously, that was the rye, but I couldn't see that at the time. And not unlike a rye beer, it finished dry, and mildly spicy-peppery, but also with a bit of hop flavor. Quite nice. Superbly rounded and remarkably well balanced.

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Photo of bluemoonswoon
3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up a six pack of this on a rather snowy day along with a few others from the Goose Island line.

Interesting, a rye beer from Goose Island, a big fan of the style so lets see how it goes.

First off it does not appear like the picture on the six pack. The picture gives the impression that the beer is hazy, but the beer that comes out of the bottle is clear and a slightly ruby colored brown. The head is nice and resembles the fluffy whiteness that appears on the six pack carrier.

Aroma is also not what I was expecting. I am used to Red's Rye's bash you in the face hop and rye hammer, this one lives up to the mild name that reminds me of a toned down Red's Rye, hops are more understaded than the rye which is on the spicier side, but still remains quite mild.

Taste is at first sweet then moves quickly into the hop and rye, the mouthfeel is dishearteningly watery but still maintains a strong enough snappy dryness that clings to the tongue just long enough to give this beer some character. The flavor profile seems a bit washed out with a rye character only just barely able to let you know its there and doing some work.

It is certainly easy enough to drink, the watery, lighter bodied mouthfeel makes it easy going down, but the after a while you sort of forget what you are drinking. I would give this beer a second shot though, I think it has something to offer than maybe I am just not getting right now, I mean Goose Island does make some fantastic beers so this one deserves some extra attention.

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Photo of sgoodship
4.35/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at the JewelOsco grocery store on Des Plaines & Fulton in Chicago. Bottled on 11/11/08.

A: Dark brown at the top and more golden colored at the bottom. Nice one finger frothy head. Really nice spotty lacing as the brew is consumed. Every sip revitalizes the head.

S: Nice bready malt with an exceptional earthy, sour, dry rye malt.

T: Very tasty. A crisp, refreshing start that goes into a lovely round bready malt taste in the middle and finishes with a rye sourness that adds a sharp tang on the palette. Not that familiar with this style but I have found that rye is really appealing to me in general. I love how it quenches the thirst. As the brew warmed up, more of a caramel malt joined the action and it was a really nice addition. The combination of sweetness and sourness almost took on a lemony profile.

M: Feels almost medium bodied - so smooth. Full in the mouth but slight tingly carbonation combined with the rye is so nice and crisp.

D: Lovely brew. It's so easy to get carried away with big beers and forget to appreciate the lovely subtleties of milder brews. This is a wonderfully refreshing beer. Perfectly balanced and just right for a session.

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Photo of champ103
4.32/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a murky brown/amber color. A tiny white cap of foam forms. Some light sticky lace is left behind.
S: A husky grain and musky malty aroma off caramel. Light spice from the rye. Some fruity peaches and pears as well (though very light).
T: At first caramel malt. A light grainy malt flavor. Light fruitiness. Plenty of spice from the rye and cinnamon. The rye spiciness and the malt work really well together.
M/D: A medium to full body that is velvety smooth. Very rich and creamy. This is a great beer to session, even if it has a little to much alcohol for a mild. I can drink this all day, and probably will during Christmas.

This beer is really intriguing. A mix between and English Mild and a Rye Beer. This brings out the best of both. Bring this to your next holiday party instead of generic macro lagers. I would recommend this, and definitely purchase again.

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Photo of snaotheus
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Decent beer, but too much spice in the flavor.

Pretty pour -- dark amber with a tall but light head. Smells like it tastes (spicy and malty). Feels yeasty or bready in the mouth, and I'm looking forward to having a pretty long session of these on Christmas Eve to help me cope with the in-laws-to-be...

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Mild Winter from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 3.69 out of 5 with 905 ratings