Santa's Private Reserve Ale | Rogue Ales

very good
2,338 Ratings
Santa's Private Reserve AleSanta's Private Reserve Ale

Brewed by:
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
10 Ingredients:
Carastan 30-37 & 13-17, Crystal 70-80 & Rogue Micro Barley Farm Dare™ & Risk™ Malts; Chinook & Rogue Farm Revolution & Freedom Hops; Free Range Coastal Water and Pacman Yeast.

65 IBU
73.1 AA
26.75º L

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-29-2001

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,338 |  Reviews: 1,197
Photo of pumarocks
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I hope Santa doesn't drive his sleigh after drinking a few of these! It is a nice red color, kinda like the bearded one's sash. I washed down a rack of ribs with this and it paired very well. It has a nice malt backbone and a crisp hop bite. Throw some Trans Siberian Orchestra on and finish your Christmas cards with this one. I'm sure Mrs. Claus would approve.

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Photo of Arbitrator
1.93/5  rDev -48.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

Chilled bomber poured into a pint glass.

A: Reddish amber body, poured with moderate head that stayed for several minutes. No lacing down the glass.

S: Piney hops dominate, some malts waft underneath. I can understand a hoppy red, but not a hop-forward red... Weird.

T: Extremely bitter piney and grassy hops with an unpleasant chalky aftertaste. Caramel malt and maybe some toffee are there, but they are completely overwhelmed by the hops. Bleh. Imbalanced hop juice.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation.

D: I split it with a friend and still had a hard time finishing it. It's simply bitter without much roundedness, and the aftertaste in particular did not sit well on the tongue. Would not buy again.

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

Deep hazy amber color, with a fluffy stiff head, the bottle foamed up a bit upon opening, which was not because of me, it was chilled and opened gently. Smells and tastes crisp and piny, lots of hops. I love the hazy hoppy look and taste too it, truly another great beer from Rogue.

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Photo of aubuc1
3.5/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured from a 12 oz bottle in to a tulip glass.

pours a clear amber brown with a thick creamy light brown head

smell is piney, grapefruit, and biscuit

taste is harsh bitter with some biscuity malt

mouthfeel is pretty good but the taste and subsequent aftertaste don't make a good amber for me

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Photo of burnstar
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear dark copper with a medium persistent head. Aroma is mild with some toastiness and some herbal hops. Taste is not overly sweet, again some toastiness. Caramel notes. Some piney earthy hops in the finish. Balanced and pleasant. Medium bodied and well carbonated. Easily drinakble. Overall a very solid American amber.

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Photo of TheFightfan1
3.67/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured from a bottle into a pint glass.Pours a nice clear amber color with an off white head,decent lacing,nice carbonation.A very hoppy smell.Goes down very smooth but has a strong roasty type aftertaste that lingers for a long time. A very high priced six pack at $15.00 really turns me off to this beer but hell Santa was on the label so you have to try it.

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Photo of midaszero
3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Clear ruby amber body with two fingers of tan head that has good retention.

S - Hops with a pleasant malt back note

T - Off bitter hops taste is dominate. Some malt can be found but not as much as I thought from the nose.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation

D - Easy to drink but not that enjoyable. The aftertaste isn't pleasant at all.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.03/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a brownish red/amberish color with a frothy off white head. Nose is hoppy with malty notes. Taste starts hoppy and finishes like a red ale, with some bitter notes. The bitter lingers in the aftertaste along with some malty tones. I did not finish as I was disappointed in this brew.

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Photo of caddybuyer
4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle from a 6 pack

A-Clear red amber with an ample tan head that craters nicely with nice lacing. Very attractive

S-Robust citrus pine hops ...Very heady and enjoyable.

T-Pine and citrus hops dominate the toffee malts ...not sure what that special Rudolf hops addition is, but it sure is tasty...bring it on. Crisp, clean finish with a lasting bitterness that tingles the throat. An excellent red ale that is a nice departure from the warmers and candy cane seasonals.

M-Medium bodied with average carbonation. Well balanced.

D-Very drinkable and enjoyable. I usually see this in bombers but was pleased and surprised to see this locally in a sixer, alas it was the last available.

I understand that this is the dry hopped version of their St. Rogue Red...I love it, and while it is not especially seaonsal, is one of my favorite highly hopped red ales.

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Photo of Docer
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a 22oz. Bottle of this at a local Fred Meyer. I like the rare selection they offer so close to home although somewhat limited and different from store to store. Poured in a tumbler glass.

Great copper-like amber appearance yet nicely transparent. Nice thin lining for a head that sticks around.

Mild smell but with a nice zingy hop spice. Some nice earthy and cool pine notes.

Tastes wonderful with a mild sweet and roasted malt. Great bite from the hop blend. Like the added Chinook hop.

Doesn't leave the mouth too dry, but does leave a pleasant aftertaste with a fresh zing. Very different from many of the other Rogues I have had in the past.

Very easy to drink, and not too thick and rich like other micro-reds. Great carbonation... almost perfect for my taste. Smooth and crisp. Not too often a nice red is crisp.

Overall I really like this hoppy amber. A pleasant surprise from Rogue.

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Photo of mugglesandhops
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at The Horse Brass.

Poured a nice red color with a good frothy head on it with decent retention, nice lacing. It smelled really hoppy but had a nice malty finish in the smell. Tasted of citursy hops, piney, malty finish, Medium bodied, good vibrant feel. This is a good brew. I will pick it up next time I see it around.

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Photo of dstc
4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear ruby color with a big foamy tan head. Head falls slow, excellent retention. Nice thick sticky lace.

Hoppy nose with faint sweet malts in the background.

Malty flavor up front followed immediately by hops. The spruce shows up near the finish as does spices. Dry, slightly bitter aftertaste.

Thick and smooth in the mouth, chewy.

Very nice brew. Will have again.

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Photo of colts9016
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is golden brown a reddish hues. The nose is citrus roasted malt, notes of floral. yeast and spice. The taste is very hoppy with a toasted malt backbone. There are notes off spice. I think that hops over powered this beer a bit unbalanced. A very good beer on the other hand.

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Photo of froghop
3.53/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a dark mahogany with a small tan beige head that dissipates quickly, and good lacing.

smell of pine, caramel, some spice, citrus, hops, and a faint smell of roasted almonds.

taste is creamy and not as bitter as it smells, there are mellow hops, some pine, citrus, a wood like taste, and some roasted malts, ends a little bitter.

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Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.73/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nose is highly citrusy with beautiful floral and perfume notes on a bed of lush malt. Chocolate notes, kind of creamy. Smells good.

Pours a deep amber color, almost opaque, large creamy head with fair retention. Looks nice.

Unusually strong hops for a winter-type beer. Bitter, tart, and mildly pungent feelings go hand-in-hand with the same citric, floral, and perfume bright hop flavors from the nose. Fruity and quite juicy. Very hoppy. Finishes dry, and dry-hoppy. Tastes pretty good. Feels good - nice and thrashy/leafy/bitter.

The malt never seems to materialize under the aggressive hops. I like hoppy beers, but I was hoping for more rich malt. Even though it is very hoppy, it never approaches my ideal IPA threshold... it's just oddly unusually hoppy. Pretty good drinkability.

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.06/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours brilliantly clear red-copper with a creamy white head that leaves sheets of lacing.

Aroma is malty, nutty and earthy with mild spices.

Taste is toasted, nutty caramel malt. Generous woody tobacco. Fruity, with piney grapefruit hop bitterness. Crisp, peppery finish is spiced with nutmeg and allspice.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied. A fuller feel would be appreciated.

Overall a drinkable, but uninspiring brew. Flavors are not unified, leaving an awkwardness that I can not overcome.

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Photo of hellomcfly
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a small off white head. It is an attractive hazy amber to orange color.

Nice malty aroma of caramel, toffee, and a slightly toasty smell as well. Hop aroma is spicy and citus.

Flavor has a nice bready malt backbone with a sharp, spicy hop bite that that gives way to a nice caramel and orange sweetness.

Medium bodied with an almost sticky finish.

Pretty drinkable in my book. Wish I had another.

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Photo of BierFan
3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 ounce brown painted glow in the dark bottle into a Samuel Smith pint glass.

Appearance: Sizeable light tan head on top of a dark orangish red body.

Smell: Nice malts and grapefruit and pine from the hops.

Taste: Very hoppy taste to it. Not overly hoppy but more hops than you usually get in red ales.

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Photo of BamaBeerBuff
4.18/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a reddish-copper with a stiff, orange-tinted head that recedes slowly. Thick sheets of sticky lace on the glass. Well done.

S: Good amount of herbal/piney hops with a hint of citrus. Sweeter malt aromas, perhaps some toffee/caramel. A touch of fruitiness and spice, as well. Could be a bit bolder, but still good.

T&M: Piney/herbal hops are well balanced with a bready, slightly toasted caramel malt flavor. A good amount of complexity for being a smaller beer--some citrus, pine, caramel, bread, and a hint of tea-leaf character. Body is just fuller than medium with a sticky feel that coats very well. Finish is long and slightly bitter and drying as it beckons you to another gulp.

D: Big flavor, but it's easy to drink. I put this one down in about 5 or 6 gulps. Definitely would recommend this as a hoppy winter seasonal. Celebration's still top dog, but this is a close second so far.

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Photo of seanbhudson
3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark copper color with a medium size tan that dissipates at normal rate. Medium lacing.
Moderate aroma of alcohol, citrus, caramel and malts. Hints of gingerbread cookies.
Roasted malts and with some caramel like qualities.
Finishes with a piney hop bitterness and a little warmth of alcohol.
Medium to full body with slightly syrupy texture and then finishes dry. Moderate carbonation.
Pretty good beer but that bitter finish makes it difficult to drink too much of this.

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Photo of dciBA
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this one out for tree decoration day. poured from a bomber into a plain old pint glass. Nice reddish amber color with a small head that fades quickly. Smell is pleasant with mostly hops coming through and touch of light caramel. Taste is quite hoppy with a nice sweet malt backing. This is a good one from rogue, tasty, and very drinkable.

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Photo of GJ40
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at Tyler's in Apex, NC.

A - A copper, reddish color with good clarity and a small white head with loads of lacing.

S - Floral and fruity hops. Nicely done.

T - A complex hop flavor with lots of citrus, big floral notes and a good bitterness level. Very crisp and clean. Somewhat dry.

M - Moderate carbonation and consistency.

D - Fun , interesting and smooth. Thank you Santa.

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Photo of Mosstrooper
4.47/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22oz into Guinness branded tulip pint glass.ce:

Appearance: Pours a mahogany color with a very big, epic off-white head that stays for a while and remains fluffy with lots of lace left behind as it dissipates.

Smell: Sweet and malty with nutty aromas and flowery hops.

Taste: Starts very sweet and malty with a dry hoppier finish. Has a slight finish like tea, too.

Mouthfeel: Medium, creamy body with a smooth finish.

Drinkability: Another exceptional beer from Rogue. I might be hunting this out for Christmas dinner this year and will look forward to it again next winter.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.98/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep transparent russet amber in appearance, massive chunky spongy light beige head with decent retention.

Crisp toasted and caramel malt on the nose, good dose of green leafy hops, seems well balanced so far.

Sharp metallic notes up front, very clean flavour, with herbal grassy hops tending to take the reigns in the middle and riding to glory into the sunset of the finish. The flavour isn't very complex, but can't be accused of being one-dimensional either. Crisp and clean flavour throughout.

Mouthfeel is also clean and slick, a foamy fullness in the middle, light on the finish.

A very approachable amber ale, one of the cleanest tasting beers I've sampled in a while.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
4.3/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice amber with a foamy head, one that gradually resembles soap bubbles as it dissipates. Nice lacing.

Mild smell of toasted malt, some citric hop scents.

Toasted malt, some caramel, chewy bread crust, and citrus hop/almost pine cone like bite. Some yeast and wood (tongue depresser) like notes as well. Slight alcohol warmth comes through too.

Good body, decent carbonation. Finish is fairly clean and pleasant. Overall, you can put these down pretty easy. Had this in a bomber at the end of the season last year (on sale, and the last one available -- and I kicked myself for not grabbing it when I had the chance). A year later, I found a 6-pack. Wonderful, tawny, hoppy, balanced beer. I will buy this every week until they run out or the season ends.

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Santa's Private Reserve Ale from Rogue Ales
3.78 out of 5 based on 2,338 ratings.
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