Winter Ale | Mt. Carmel Brewing Company

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84
good
77 Ratings
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Winter AleWinter Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Mt. Carmel Brewing Company
Ohio, United States
mtcarmelbrewingcompany.com

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TheBierBand on 02-01-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
77
Reviews:
40
Avg:
3.69
pDev:
12.47%
 
 
Wants:
3
Gots:
9
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 77 |  Reviews: 40
Photo of json83
3/5  rDev -18.7%

Photo of Caterwaul
4.5/5  rDev +22%

Photo of hosehead83
4.09/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Dark brown/tea colored, with a moderate, light tan head of foam.
Aroma-Ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg
Taste-A liquid Christmas cookie. Ginger snap,spiced tea,nutmeg,honey and toffee. A big mix of flavors but all play along nicely. Pleasant and flavorfull. A nice fireside brew. ABV very well-hidden. Sip slowly and enjoy.

 370 characters

Photo of dorianmarley
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is brown with copper red hints. Light head that leaves great lacing.

Nose is nutmeg, ginger and spruce, with sweet caramel.

Taste is cinnamon and hops that don't entirely blend together. There is also orange and a displeasing coppery finish. Great breadiness the whole way through.

Mouthfeel is smooth, with a nice hop/spice bite, but not enough substance to support the thick flavors.

Overall, it doesn't have everything you would want in a winter warmer. It has spice, but it is clouded by the pungency of the hops. The flavors do not all work well together. That said, this is a great example of quality bread flavor.

 635 characters

Photo of BB1313
3.79/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a transparent dark brown with ruby highlights, huge slightly off white head and very sticky lacing. This is a VERY good looking brew. The aromas are subtle and plain. I'm picking up some earthy spices and a slight fruitiness. Floral. Raisins and caramel in the mix as well. Berries and more dark fruit. The flavors really come through in the taste, not the nose. Lots of honey, ginger, and spices.. but no cinnamon, it's not one of those kind of winter ales. I'm picking up on the spruce and orange peel. Lots of cocoa and a touch of coffee. For a split second I thought I was drinking a porter/stout based on the taste, but no. The flavors aren't in your face, but bold enough and pretty tasty. Mouthfeel is really nice, smooth, and creamy. Very easy to drink, I like it! Alcohol goes unnoticed and I'd never guess this was 8% abv.

This is a very solid winter ale.. more along the lines of Avery Jubilation and Anderson Valley Winter Solstice. Very fitting for the cold weather.. recommended.

 1,049 characters

Photo of PDXHops
2.46/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 ounce bottle courtesy of Ryan011235, poured into a Duvel tulip in January '11. Dark amber with 2 fingers of creamy off-white head. Good retention and a fair amount of lacing.

Disclaimer: I'm not a fan of 'empty the spice rack' winter warmers.

Assorted pie spices linger behind caramel and roasted malt aromas. Come sippin' time, the lingering is over; the spices rule the roost here. There seems to be a fair amount of hop character and the malt profile is pleasant, but the spices drown everything out. A solid brew seems to be lingering underneath the spices, but this seems to be a pie spice tea as much as a beer. Not a brew I'd revisit.

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Photo of KYBrewgrass
4.3/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- 4 Pours a pretty ruby brown color that can just be seen through. There's a 1/2 finger bone head on the pour that slowly fades to a minimal fizz on top of the body. Its bubbles are ultra fine and there is fairly smooth lacing that slips down the edges of the pint glass fairly quickly; just a bit more watery than ideal.

S- 4 I get a nutty, malty sweet aroma from this winter ale. It also has a bit of a ginger spice to it. Pleasant aroma overall that isn't overly complex.

T- 4.5 Spices such as nutmeg and cinnamon come to mind, as they would in a spicy holiday bread. I can taste malt and a little honey sweetness. It is just a bit nutty as well, with a tinge of fruit to finish. This brew has a very good balanced taste and its alcohol is barely even detectable.

M- 4 This winter ale feels just a little light despite its medium body (though this makes it easy to drink). Its carbonation is sufficient. It leaves me slightly dry.

D- 4.5 For the style, I could probably drink as many of these as most. Its flavors are very tasty and its lighter than average body for the style actually make it easier for me to take down. The balance of spicy and sweet is high with this brew, which always works well in my book. A very good brew from Mt. Carmel. I look forward to it each year.

 1,287 characters

Photo of stewart124
4.32/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark amber with some red highlights. Visible carbonation with little head.

Dark carmel notes present in the aroma. Some prune and raisin in the nose.

Medium bodied with a smooth pleasing overall character. Nice spice mix of cinnamon and allspice that blends very well with the darker caramel malts. More caramel than anything this has some vanilla and raisin in the aftertaste.

Very easy to drink and the 8% alcohol is hidden. No phenolic alcohol notes. Some buttery diacytl that adds to the complexity. Really nice biscuity flavors which seems to push this towards an English winter warmer.

This beer has really worked it's way into one of my favorite winter warmers. Subtle spices and caramel blend wonderfully to make this so easy to go down.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.38/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to FtownThrowDown for the extra. Poured into 10 oz snifter glass. Pours a dark amber color showing nice head and lace that lasts well throughout. Aroma of spruce, ginger, and orange comes out. A nice winter warmer overall, but had a disappointing finish towards the end which was a little flatish. It was nice to taste a winter warmer from a local brewery from Cincy.

 374 characters

Photo of Bierguy5
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, 8% abv. Chestnut to mahogany in color, with some ruby edges. Tan head fades almost immediately, but does leave a few spots of lace.

Toffee, caramel, cinnamon, a bit of orange peel. A bit of ginger fades in as well.

Malt is toffee-like, and has a bit of a bready character. Cinnamon comes through, orange peel and a hint of ginger. Some sweetness like a Christmas cookie. Finishes a bit dry.

Body is a bit lacking and thin. Adequate carbonation. Some warmth from alcohol. Overall, not bad.

 508 characters

Photo of Tilley4
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Received this as an extra in a recent trade...

This was a good winter ale for sure... Lots of rich spicy maltiness present in the aromas with hints of the spruce mentioned on the bottle and cinnamon and nutmeg... Almost Wee Heavy like in its appearance and aromas... Touches of booze present in the taste along with the winter spices here... A nice sipper or nightcap but the richness and booze keep it from being something I could have more than one of...

 458 characters

Photo of scottyshades
3.45/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bamadog for the bottle!

A: Pours a deep ruby/brown color with a small off-white cap. Retention is not too great

S: Overripe red fruits and berries, lots of caramel, toffee, light molasses, caramel malts, and a touch of spice. The nose is a little shy, but seemingly balanced

T: Thin flavor, but well done. An underlying sweetness, followed by a bit of spice and cocoa powder. Artificial red fruits and berries in the background. Malts give some sweetness and caramel flavor

MF/D: Too thin for the style in my opinion, which is shocking considering the 8% ABV. Alcohol is well hidden throughout.

Notes: Tasty beer, but nowhere near the likes of Cigar City's Warmer Winter or Anchor's Christmas Ale. Glad to try it, and thanks for the bottle bamadog

 763 characters

Photo of kels
3.44/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a nice ruby-tinged rich brown. It has moderate clarity, and the carbonation within rises nicely to the surface of the beer. The initial 1 finger eggshell-hued head fizzles out pretty much immediately to a soft, spotty skim. Lots of stringy, sticky lace remains behind.

Not a whole lot of aroma off this one. There's a hint of the darkly roasted malt - somewhat chocolatey, somewhat dry and biscuity. Maybe a touch of cinnamon, but nothing else, really.

Beer is light, yet flavorful. The malts show a good balance between rich roast and crunchy toast. The spices are really light, with just the cinnamon cutting through. There's a weird lingering aftertaste that reminds me of Worcestershire sauce, but it doesn't detract really, oddly enough. Carbonation is fully and fizzy, keeping the overall profile bright in the face of the warming and toasty flavors.

Pretty drinkable. Could definitely use an extra something in the aroma or taste to distinguish it a bit, but it's a decently drinkable beer.

 1,018 characters

Photo of Mora2000
3.56/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is very one dimensional and is very heavy on the toffee. I don't get anything else. The flavor is toffee, caramel and chocolate. I was expecting some spices in the beer and I don't get any. Still, the flavor is pretty nice and the beer is easy to drink. The alcohol is well hidden. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 425 characters

Photo of Ryan011235
3.91/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter on 12/12/10

Courtesy of CruisaC

Though it pours a flat brown, the beer settles dark with a ruby sheen at the bottom of the glass. The head was slow to rise so I went for a more aggravated pour, upon which a two finger head came cascading. Thin layer of bubbly foam & nice swaths of lace remain.

Aromas of baked bread, spices & hints of orange zest. At first the nose struck me as unevenly hoppy, like the alpha acids simply weren't mingling with the malt bill. Warmth & swirling drive away that notion, as smooth maltiness takes the stage.

Tastes similar to the latter incarnation of the nose. Dry, baked bread flavors are robust & have a toasty edge. Spices are worked throughout, well-manned all the while. Earthy hops & a slight citric twinge offer bitterness of the rounding-out variety.

Medium bodied but with a half-syrupy feel. Moderate carbonation brings a little agitation to the tongue (granted, I swirled some away but this is hardly an overly prickly beer). Finely granulated grit. Dry finish with lingering notes of toasted bread & spice.

This is an easy-sipping winter warmer; good malt & hop balance, just enough spice & far from being sweet. It certainly doesn't hurt that the 8% abv is all but hidden.

 1,246 characters

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

I've had several of the Mt. Carmel beers since they started bottling a couple of years ago, but it's not really something that I consider a "go-to" kind of beer. However, this one will now be one that I pick up annually -- I thought it was pretty solid. Review is from notes taken on 12/3/2010 and poured from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark chestnut brown; really no head to speak of, just a very thin skim and ring around the surface; body is dark, but seems fairly clear; no lacing is left behind at all.

Smell: Quite a bit of toffee and caramel; a slight sweet breadiness; mild spiciness, like ginger and orange peel. Not too bad, fairly robust.

Taste: Not too bad, a fair amount of baking spices like ginger and nutmeg is right up front; a sweet malty breadiness and a definite presence of orange and orange peel; just a very slight presence of alcohol and it rounds out with a nice, earthy roastiness to it. Quite nice on a cold night, really takes the name "winter warmer" to heart.

Mouthfeel: Body is between light and medium in weight and it's just a tad oily; carbonation is present, but it's very soft and it lends to a smooth and slick finish; a moderately thick and sticky coating is left all over the mouth and the belly is left just a little warm from the ABV.

Drinkability: A nice sipper with warm flavors -- definitely one of Mt. Carmel's better beers thus far. The weight isn't too bad, but I do feel that the ABV would start to sneak up, so I would likely limit myself to 2 in a night, but overall, if I'm sipping on it, I could make it last for an evening.

 1,603 characters

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

Poured a deep dark amber color, with a spiced wassail nose. Putting emphasis on the spices, this is a flat out strong winter ale. Remarkably more complex than first impression, it has a mouth filling palate where orange notes combine with citrus like hop bitterness, completed by a long dry finish.
With ample malt support, this presentation of spices is balanced and festively good.

 383 characters

Photo of brown2cu
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a dark dark brown with a moderate head that dissipates as the beer warms. It leaves a moderate amount of lacing that fades gradually.

Smell: Incredible! The smell is predominantly consisted of the plethora of spices that went into the brew. You can if you strain your nose enough detect a fair amount of malt and really faint hops.

Taste: Spices, Spices, and more spices balanced off with malt and a faint hoppyness in the back. The alcohol is barely detectable until swallowed where the warming sensation is immediately noticeable. Incredible taste altogether, the spices are just a bit cloying after awhile.

Mouthfeel: heavy with moderate carbonation.

Drink: The ABV on this one is pretty gnarly which cuts down on its drinkability, I'm perfectly satisfied with a single bottle after a meal. If you want a good session beer of this style I would pick up an old fezziwig from Sam Adams.

 909 characters

Photo of kirkpjr
3.72/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes - 5/2/10.

Poured from the bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

A: Dark mahogany and copper with some amber highlights. 1 and 1/2 fingers of head. Lacing slides down the glass without sticking very much.

S: Caramel and vanilla on top of sweet malts. Subtle spices - maybe cinnamon and nutmeg.

T: Malt is a little overpowering and overwhelming at first. The spices come in lightly at the finish.

M: Moderate carbonation and medium body.

D: Goes down fairly smoothly. Nice winter style beer. Spices cut down a little on the drinkability.

 567 characters

Photo of becktone
3.55/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes 12-17-09

Eye: Garnet in color and extremely clear. Head fromation and retention are okay and poor, respectively. Other than that this one looks very nice.

Nose: All in all weak nose to begin with. Weak spice overall. From what I can get maybe some star anise, cinnamon. Okay!, well label is king here! Without reading it I'd never have got "orange-spiced bread", but yeah, its definitely there.

Tongue: Heavy on the spice in the middle of the tongue. Again like the label states, spruce and ginger are here...easy to define, nice. Alcohol is detectable. Nothing special or to be sought out, nice, but nothing damning either. A nice spiced ale for the colder months. Better than more than a few I can think of. Give it a shot.

Feel an Drinkability: Carbonation is low and is great for the style. Body is medium full and kinda oily. Not a bad deal all in all, kinda thick and velvety feeling. Nothing special on the feel, nothing out the ordinary, nothing damning either. This is one I'd drink again, though at the price;...I'd say it should be less. Its good but for the same price at 10.29(in ky) I can get some Bell's which is far superior...in my opinion.

 1,175 characters

Photo of ltjska04
3.83/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mt. Carmel is finally distributing to KY again, and to celebrate I picked up a single of each of their offerings. Poured into my snifter, this beer is a very dark ruby color. There was barely any head but what's there settles into a nice ring around the glass with pretty decent lacing. The smell is mostly seasonal spices such as ginger, spruce, and cinnamon. It smells welcoming and similar to other winter beers. The taste is mostly spruce up front. There is some cinnamon and other spices in the background as well as a bit of malt. The mouthfeel is about what I expected here and drinkability is pretty high. This is one of the better winter warmers I've had this season; I may even prefer it over Great Lakes' offering. This is a good beer for winter but I wouldn't search it out over the course of an entire year. The spices here would be pretty out of place during other seasons.

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Photo of blakesell
4.08/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 12oz. bottle (fresh) listed on the bottle as 8% ABV, 36.8 IBU. Poured into a German style stein.

Appearance- Beer pours a ruby brown with a healthy two and a half finger head that dissipates fairly quickly and leaves ample lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell- Not a lot going on in the nose sadly enough, I'm getting carmelly malts and cinnamon. Not much hop presence, very bready. Not bad, not that special/amazing either. I guess I can catch a hint of the nutmeg that is claimed on the bottle.

Taste- the taste is greater than the smell and I really like the flavor going on here, the nutmeg and ginger are more powerful than the cinnamon, and the balance of the spices are very nice. The malts are extremely balanced for a beer of this gravity. I would have liked to see more balance like this than spice rack attack that I saw for last year's xmas.

Mouthfeel- Not warming, medium in carbonation, not cloying, medium full bodied, very nice.

Drinkability- I really like this one, in fact, I would go so far as to say this is my number 3 winter beer of this season. Too bad I only got one bottle. I'll pursue more next time I'm out to the southwest.

 1,164 characters

Photo of Goldopelgt
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a dark, reddish-amber color with an off-white head that diminishes somewhat quickly...decent lacing left on the glass

S- Fairly spicy aroma (ginger, nutmeg, some cinnamon too) but is balanced nicely with some sweet malts and good amount of hoppiness...

T- Wow, very well balanced brew...the spiciness you would expect out of a good winter beer is there, but so is a good amount of hops and maltiness as well...pretty damn good!

M- Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation

D- A very drinkable beer...this has quickly jumped up the list as one of my favorite winter brews, and at 8% it can easily live up to its 'winter warmer' label in more ways than one...if you can get your hands on it, its definitely worth a try

 737 characters

Photo of mwa423
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Pours a beautiful clear dark red but only a very small amount of white head that disappeared quickly. A good head would have made this a solid 5.

S - Lots of spice and sweet malt and different spices. Pleasant that the spice isn't overwhelming.

T - The taste is slightly thinner then GLBC Christmas ale, but the flavor profile is close. A bit stronger flavor and this could be a winner, but this is a very drinkable winter beer.

M/D - The mouthfeel is slightly thin, but that isn't exactly a bad thing compared to the full and rich mouthfeel of most winter beers but that adds a lot to drinkability. This is one of very few winter warmers I could session.

 662 characters

Photo of Dogbrick
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On draught at the Dilly Deli. The beer pours a murky dark amber-brown color with a medium off-white head that diminishes steadily. Rings of lacing on the glass. Spicy aroma of ginger with mild hops and malt behind it. Medium-bodied with a sweet spiced character of ginger and nutmeg. Lightly bitter hops and sweet malt are present as well. The finish is moderately spicy and leaves a sweet fruity aftertaste. Pretty good all around.

 432 characters

Winter Ale from Mt. Carmel Brewing Company
3.69 out of 5 based on 77 ratings.
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