Santa's Private Reserve Ale | Rogue Ales

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Santa's Private Reserve AleSanta's Private Reserve Ale
2,364 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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,364 |  Reviews: 1,205
Photo of mothman
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into New Belgium Globe Glass.

Pours about a finger of creamy beige head. Really nice retention leaving lots of thick lace walls. Color is a dark, but clear, copper hued ruby. Very nice looking beer.

Aroma: Smells very hoppy with a decent amount of malts. Pine hop flavor with caramel and toffee. There also seems to be some spices and cookie flavors. Not to bad.

Taste: It reminds me of a hopped up red ale that wasn't drank fresh. The malts show a lot here, but there is a decent amount of hops. A big amount of pine and citrus flavors with caramel. It also has a metallic flavor in the aftertaste. Nothing I am overly fond of.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, dry, and bubbly. Lots of carbonation here with a medium bodied. Ends very malty and sticky.

Overall, It started out good, but it just didn't taste that amazing. I am a little bummed out that I still have a lot to finish from this bomber. It is drinkable, just nothing I want to drink a lot of.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.2/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, very reddish-copper color with a full, foamy, light tan head that holds quite well and leaves some very nice lace. The aroma is hoppy! Piney/gently citrusy and lightly fruity. The body is medium with a fine & median carbonation. The flavor starts softly fruity and lightly nutty. A nicely sweet caramel maltiness comes through before becoming engulfed in resiny hop flavor and bitterness. And yet, the bitterness never really builds on the palate. Extremely well balanced for such a boldly hopped beer! It finishes quite dry with just some residual maltiness and a bold lingering bitterness. This beer reminded me of their St. Rogue Red but with more hop character. Very nice. An excellent choice for the hop lovers among us!

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Photo of largadeer
4.23/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark reddish-amber with great transparency. Pours with a couple inches of head that slowly works its way down to a quarter-inch, leaving sticky lace all over the glass. An awesome looking beer.

Smell: Malty and caramelly with that distinct chinook hop aroma of grapefruit and spices.

Taste: Spicy and floral with notes of grapefruit. A solid caramel backbone holds up the big hop character of this beer. The finish is a balance of sweet malts and bitter hops, with bitterness eventually taking precedence.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and slightly oily on the tongue; soft, natural carbonation from bottle conditioning.

Notes: This is a great red ale - possibly one of the best coming from the US right now.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've never seen this in Texas before so I had to pick it up. Santa's is dark ruby-red in color with a creamy light brown head. Aroma is hoppy with some nutty malts mixed in. Taste is a nicely balanced (at least from what I hear about all the different products by Rogue) mix of tasty hops and mildly nutty malts. Hops are diffenently emphasized here, but aren't overwhelming. Mouthfeel and drinkability are great as predicted. So far this is one of my least favorite beers from Rogue and it's still great. Pick this up!

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Photo of chinchill
4.11/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

650 ml bottle (2010) served in .5 liter glass mug

A - Red mahogany with good amount of tan head. Head has good retention. Slight haze.

Medium strength aroma that is primarily hoppy gives way to a flavor with more malt balance than anticipated. Malt is clearly in aroma too, but the balance changes.
Slightly too earthy: otherwise, flavor = 4.5. Nice dynamic and lasting finish.

M - nice smooth feel, medium body with good level of carbonation.

O - Think, Imperial Red Ale. Good enough to go out and buy a couple more bottles to stow away for next Xmas.

Follow-up: we'll, it is now Xmas 2011, and the 2010 vintage is excellent ... Perhaps even better than a year ago. Particularly excellent balance!

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Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

Photo of vfgccp
2.45/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

2010 bottle, drank 2/22/11.

A - Deep amber. Fluffy finger head with a nice lace.

S - Light malt breadyness. Some clove, sugar, vanilla, chocolate chip cookies.

T - Copper, metallic taste dominates the profile. Some light malt and cedar hops peak through on the back end.

M - Resiny bitterness paired with the copper character comes off fairly unpleasant.

D - Not sure what's going on with the metallic taste.

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Photo of paulish
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Gkruszewski
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Ciocanelu
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Slightly cloudy dark amber color with beige head. Aroma is malt forward but you also get some earthy, resiny hops with dried orange notes. Taste starts slightly sweet and malty, even a bit nutty. Finish is more bitter and earthy with a bit of pine resin. Medium to light body, medium carbonation. Really well balanced overall, starting malty and sweet but the hops are present on the finish with a drying bitterness.

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Photo of oberon
3.63/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is one annual I look forward to every year I honestly didnt know it changed every year and maybe it doesnt but I did notice some changes this year.Poured a deep rich amber with reddish tinted well formed 1/2 finger head,the big dose of sprucey,piney hop is there along with some caramel and roasted grain as usual.The big diference I noticed in this years batch is really how thin and for that matter prickly the mouthfeel was it just didnt equate with the flavors,the hop profile is there and a decent sweetish malt base but the body really downgraded it this year.Hmm am I just dreaming or has it changed?

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Photo of nickfl
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

A: The beer is a light reddish brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malts, floral hops and some citrus.

T: The taste is nicely balanced with flavors of caramel & citrus sweetness and a good floral hops bitterness. The malt character is hearty and the hops presence eventually takes dominance. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, this is a good beer with some substance and is worth drinking for a long time.

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Photo of mactrail
3.46/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber in the big globe with a sensational head. Lacing lingers around, and it's altogether a nice sudsy experience. I swear it smells faintly of camomile and not much else.

I didn't expect the smoke. It's fairly understated so it took me a while to place the flavor and scent. Definitely enhances what is otherwise a rather thin and sharp beer. The hops come along to claim the stage. Not excessively bitter, but more than I'd like in a winter seasonal.

If this is really an Amber Ale, it's one of the better ones. And I guess with no spice additives, that's what it is. Just a touch of malty sweetness, but some kind of candy in the nose. It's an odd one, and worth a try, especially if you would rather have more hops than less.

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Photo of billab914
3.67/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Southern Tier tulip glass. Poured a dark copper color with a thin white lacing covering the top of the beer. The head had decent retention and left some very good lacing on the glass.

The aroma is hoppy with pine, citrus and a earthy spiciness to it. A little sweet malt comes through a little in the nose as well. The taste has a lot of hoppy pine and spiciness to it along with a decent supporting malt backbone.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is decent, it's a pretty good tasting beer with some good flavors that goes down pretty easy.

I have to say my favorite part of this beer was that despite it being a holiday beer it wasn't a spice bomb. What spices were there seemed to be from the verities of hops used and not from spice additions. A nice surprise in my opinion.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.67/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a moderate amber color with a several finger head and a decent amount of lacing on the way down. The nose brings forward some nice citrus and pine notes, and this is balanced out by some amber malt and bready characteristics. Moderate body and carbonation bring forward some bitterness, although there is a bit of sweetness coming over the edge.

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Photo of REVZEB
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

Photo of smcolw
3.92/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reddish, light brown. Slight coudiness. Nice lace as the beer is consumed. The head is light beige, about one-finger thick. It dies within five minutes to a single layer of fine bubbles.

A touch of chocolate malt in the aroma. Nice dry hop presence for balance--flowery.

Most notable is the dryness of this brew. It is also surprisingly thin in body with a relatively high carbonation. Bountiful amount of hops, but not overwhelming. Very brief aftertaste.

This is similar to a darkish high-hopped pale ale.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.86/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a crystal clear deep amber with 2 fingers of frothy off-white head. This settles down into a thin creamy covering that leaves a massive sticky coating of lace down the sides of the glass. The aroma is a touch piney with additional accents of grapefruit, spice, and bready malts. Quite nice but it seems a little light at times.

The taste is similar but a little more assertive, with some lightly dry lingering resinous hoppiness, a smack of citrus and prominent spice, and some good balancing notes of bread and caramel. The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth but is coming off as a bit too light bodied. Not quite watery or anything but it seems that it could be a little more supportive of the flavors involved.

Decent stuff. I just wished that there was some more meat to it that would have really pushed it over the top for me. Still, this packed enough flavor and a good enough drinkibility to keep this Santa themed beer off of my naughty list.

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Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

Photo of woodychandler
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wow! My original review of this one was on draught & at The Grey Lodge, no less. This bottle review is taking place on T, 10 January 2017 from a bottle scored at the Friendly Greek Bottle Shop here in Lancaster, PA. I had originally intended to review it on or around Christmas day, but time (et al) got away from me. Better late than never, I suppose.

From the bottle: "Dare*Risk*Dream"; "100% Pure Rogue"; [undersigned] John C. Maier Brewmaster".

I Pop!ped the cap & without a seeming care in the world, I really let the beer fly from the bottle into the awaiting glass. This resulted in the formation of three fingers of dense, rocky, tawny head that suddenly gave a heave of exhaustion and fell hard, leaving a load of sticky lacing in its wake. Color was a Coppery-Brown (SRM = > 17, < 22 although closer to 17) with NE-quality clarity. Nose was very sweet and malty, more towards caramel than bready, but the case could be made for that also. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium, not watery, but not much past it, either. The taste was kind of uneven, like it could not decide where on the malty/hoppy spectrum it wanted to fall. I started to get piney hops, but then the malt asserted itself and cockblocked the hops. Finish was semi-dry, but unsatisfying as a whole. Clearly. my palate has changed since those early years on here. I am leaving my original scores in place as a historical record, but I no longer stand behind them.

Xmas in July at The Grey Lodge! Whoo hoo. Thanks, Scoats, for another brilliant gathering.

This arrived with a really fluffy tan head that slowly reduced but never completely disappeared. It had a lovely malt nose which didn't seem spicy at all. The color was a deep amber, or better, caramel color, like cola. The mouthfeel was rather light. I noted a light combination of sweetness and spiciness in the mouth. Amazingly, the finish was more hoppy than malty. I found this highly enjoyable and I would have had another had it not been for all of the different beers brought out for the occasion.

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Photo of russpowell
4.4/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours ruby red with a fluffy light brown head. Head retention good, not great. Lacing clings to the side of the .5L glass I'm drinking this from.

Smell: Hops (piney and some floral notes) and fruitiness, a slight earthiness with slight brown sugar notes.

Taste: Hops kicking ass & taking names from the get go, but still complimenting a malty/fruity body.

MF: Chewy & balanced, but straying towards over hopping, detracting drinkabiity...

Tasty effort, reminds me of buffed up brutal bitter..

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.4/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Santa's reserve was decent. It poured a nice clear amber with white head that did not lace. The scent was fairly non-descript. The taste was slightly bitter and came off the pallet clean. Overall it was ok....I wouldn't go searching it out.

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Photo of XmnwildX12
2.5/5  rDev -33.2%

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Santa's Private Reserve Ale from Rogue Ales
Beer rating: 3.74 out of 5 with 2,364 ratings