Shipyard Longfellow Winter Ale | Shipyard Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
86
very good
195 Ratings
Shipyard Longfellow Winter AleShipyard Longfellow Winter Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co.
Maine, United States
shipyard.com

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-03-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
195
Reviews:
96
Avg:
3.84
pDev:
12.24%
 
 
Wants:
18
Gots:
27
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 195 |  Reviews: 96
Photo of kylehay2004
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: single finger tan thick head on a very deep amber/dark brown clear body.

S: molasses, cinnamon, roasted malts, caramel and brown sugar.

T: spices, dark chocolate, roasted malts, hint of espresso, earthy hops. Mild bitterness to the finish.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: complex, flavorful and probably the best beer I have had from Shipyard which doesnt say a whole lot but this is certainly a good one.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.78/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

a somewhat lighter bodied porter, a great session beer this time of year, and a tasty addition to the holiday seasonal box this year. the light body is surprising because the color is quite dark on the spectrum, holds its tan head well too, above the rim even for awhile. English type yeast for sure, old and crackery and a little acidic for a second, seems to always pull that from the malt, but it works. mild cocoa notes in the flavor that I can not smell, and then a dried fruit flash, raisin or fig or something, unique in a porter type. this has all the flavors in terms of grain of a big malty amber though too, sweet and nutty at the right times, but rounded out in the end by roasted barley instead of sugar. dangerously easy drinking because it doesn't have that filling hearty oatmeal type body, but it doesn't seem thin either. I like this feel more and more as it warms and as I sip on it too. a touch of burnt malt bitterness on the very tail end, but mellowing out beautifully in the end. I found myself wishing there were more of these in the mixer. shipyard deserves more credit overall too, they make some real good beer and get so little love out there...

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Photo of dmorgan310
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a deep clear brown color ale with a good size foamy head with some good retention and some minimal lacing. Aroma consists of strong caramel malt with some notes of toffee also discernable. Taste is also a nice mix between some roasted malt with distinctive notes of caramel malt with some toffee notes also discernable. Full body with good carbonation and no discernable alcohol. I know winter ale is not a style per say but this is what I consider a winter ale but still very enjoyable during hot summer days.

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Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy brown body with a light reddish cast and deep mahogany highlights. It's two-fingered, frothy, light-tan head slowly drops to a quarter-inch of creamy surface covering amongst some very nice lace. A pleasing nose expresses caramel, toffee, mild butterscotch, and a berry-like/apple fruitiness. The body is firm with a fine, moderate carbonation that gently caresses the tongue before becoming creamy and smooth across the palate. In the mouth, rich notes of caramelized sugar and butterscotch are tempered by a mild chocolate character and roasty edge. Some almost-tropical fruitiness appears at the outset, and then again midway through the mouth after the sweetness and buttery notes have passed, but gives way to a drying roasty cusp and bold (but balanced) bitterness. Some alcohol is clearly present, but it works well within the blanket of malt and seems more warming/comforting than intrusive. It finishes dry with some mild lingering caramel and bitterness. This is an exceptionally well-rounded winter beer that seems to straddle several styles and I love it for it's individuality and uniqueness. It has the unobtrusive bitterness and buttery diacetyl note of a brown ale; the fuller chocolatey/caramel note of a porter; and the rich maltiness of a Scotch ale. It's not so strong or full, however, that it needs to be set aside as an after-dinner drink; and it's surely a winter gem that could grace any festive table. Well worth trying!

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Photo of chinchill
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle (2012) served in a Sam Adams lager glass.

Pours deep, dark, clear mahogany with a small and fragile tan head. Decent lacing is left on the glass. ]

The spice level is near perfect and well-balanced. While evident in the nose [4.25] and obvious up front upon tasting, the spicing slowly fades after the finish eventually leaving a chocolate malt to dominate the aftertaste. Sweet and bitter largely in balance, but a tad too sour. No burnt flavors, but a hint of smoke in the finish. High complexity and good balance make every sip seem a little different than the one before. At various times, dark fruit, vanilla, cinnamon, English hops and several other flavors make appearances. Plenty of dark chocolate in the nose and flavor.

M: near full body with rather lively carbonation. I suspect I'd prefer a bit less carbonation; a suspicion supported by the fact that the mouth feel improves after the beer has been in the glass for a while. Semi-dry finish.

O: outstanding, and unusually low ABV, winter warmer.

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Photo of jlindros
3.23/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

More and more I've been trying Shipyards and liking them less and less. I used to love the stuff from their pub, a few blocks from my friends place. But the bottles just don't seem to cut it.

A: Fluffy 2 finger head fades at a medium pace over dark roasty reddish brown color.

N: Creamy fruity malts, sweet syrup and molasses, quite a bit of syrupy aromas, malt extract aromas as well, a touch of brown sugar and a hint of bitterness.

T: Sweet malts and malt extract galore! Lots of sticky sweet low grade syrups and extract flavors, as usual from the Shipyard stuff. A little minerality and salt too, some spices, little Christmas spices, a little bitterness, very schmalty. Blech! I'm beginning to think that they have a bottling line thing, like Opa-Opa did where the bottles just tasted terrible compared to the real stuff at the brewery/growler. I'm also wondering if I get some older stuff in the bottles and its just bad by the time I get it. This was a winter brew and I got it in spring, and some of the reviews pick out a lot of stuff I didn't so perhaps I'll have to start reviewing these fresher.

M: Med body, syrupy, some carbonation.

F: Syrupy sweet still, sticky, lots more sweet malt extract and low grade syrup. A bad unpleasant bitterness comes through as well, the bitter on teh initial taste wasn't so bad, but now it just gets bad. A little smoke as well comes out.

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Photo of oberon
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

By far my favorite beer from Shipyard,pours a deep ruby with a light but sticky head,aroma is nice malty sweet and chocolaty.Taste is right up my alley with a nice malty flavor with some sweetness with some roated flavors its a real warmer.Liked it much better on cask than in the bottle.Would like to have again on cask..

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Photo of nickfl
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Three fingers of medium brown head on an opaque black body. The head settles slowly and leaves thick lace.

S - Spicy notes of cinnamon and allspice with caramel malt, fruity english yeast and a hint of musty hops.

T - Lots of sweet, toffee malt up front with light coffee and chocolate notes. Some fruity red apple yeast notes in the middle that fade to dark malt for the finish. Lingering notes of chocolate with a hint of roast and light malt bitterness.

M - A slightly oily, medium-thick body, moderately high carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - Quite drinkable with a good combination of malt and spice complexity. This is the best beer I have had from shipyard, though it doesn't take all that much to beat their usual fare.

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Photo of smithj4
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.98/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

"In character, in manner, in style, in all things, the supreme excellence is simplicity."

--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Roasted walnut brown that is actually dark garnet when backlit with sunshine. Following a louder than usual escape of CO2 on crown cracking, the head exploded to the top of the glass on the pour. The soft, airy foam is golden beige in color and isn't sticky enough to leave more than a few bony fingers of lace.

Shipyard describes Longfellow Winter Ale as a porter-Scottish ale hybrid with a distinctive roasted malt character. It's hard to appreciate all that in the nose. Maybe it will strike me that way on the palate. The beer has a routine dark maltiness that is much more tangy-sour than usual.

It's pretty much a wash between this beer's good characteristics and its bad ones. On the negative side, it's too thin, too fizzy, too tart, too bitter, too simple and too metallic (with the first several sips at least). On second thought, maybe the bad outweighs the good.

If one is able to get past all that, Henry Wadsworth does have a decent roasted maltiness, along with a phenolic bite that is reminiscent of Bonny Scotland. Amazingly, the Ringwood butteriness of most Shipyard brews is in short supply. It's hard to tell if this is an old bottle or not, but it's hard to believe the brewers designed it to taste and feel this way.

The mouthfeel is the source of most of the trouble. Again, it's way too light and way too fizzy. The bubbles settle down some by mid-bomber, but the body hasn't firmed up one iota. Not good.

Given some of the other reviews, it appears as though I got a less than representative bottle. I will make every effort to acquire another and will glady put Mr. Longfellow through his paces again.

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Photo of Jason
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz. brown long neck. Faded violet label with a head pic of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. No freshness date.

Appearance: Dark ruby with a very light tan frothy head.

Smell: Esters, ripe fruit and butterscotch perfume from this brew.

Taste: Hints of roasted, light chocolate and ripe fruit up front, then a slightly assertive hop bitterness, touch of butter, faint smoke/charcoal and a warming alcohol presence. In the after is some caramel and lingering hop bitterness that finishes quite nice.

Notes: Very much like a porter with some scotch ale qualities, quite a big ale ... beautiful for dismal winter days of snow, ice, sleet, freezing rain, hail, slush and so on.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No light getting through on this one at all, really quite opaque. A large three finger high head of chocolate colored foam then rose up over the top of it with tremendous retention

Lots of notes of chocolate, almost completely dominated by it to be honest. Once you moved past that, there were some nice hints of sugary caramel and a touch of roasted coffee coming through in the smell now. Some nice roasted malts, a touch of smoke maybe, and definitely a hint of vanilla.Full on chocolate malt assault as the first wave of flavor came over my tongue. Big notes here of dark chocolate mixed in with a touch of coffee as well. Very dark and complex, hints of vanilla, caramel, and lactose,

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Photo of Slatetank
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of mdfb79
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received this one from SpeedwayJim in Round 4 of the 666 BIF; thanks Jum! Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my Duvel tulip.

a - Pours a deep dark brown color with one finger of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Head lasts for a minute and leaves an inch throughout drinking it. Also leaves a little bit of lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of coffee, roasted malts, bitter chocolate, sweet dark fruits, light vanilla, and light caramel malts/toffee. Chocolate and roasted malts dominate the nose up front, but as it warms up some caramel ande fruit shines through. Pretty nice.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, bitter chocolate, bitter coffee, caramel malts, toasted and burnt malts, and very light sweet fruit. Again, dominated by the bitter chocolate and roasted malts. The taste also had a lot of toasted and burnt notes. Good, but a little bit of a step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Pretty smooth and easy to drink.

o - Overall a nice porter that is dominated by bitter chocolate and coffee notes, as well as roasted malts. The nose had a little bit more going for it and was more complex than the taste, and it was pretty easy to drink. Would have it again.

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Photo of Gkruszewski
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of tdm168
3.74/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev +4.2%

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

bomber bottle without any freshness indication on the labels. Pours typical porter like dark almond/honey amber. Light tan head, leaves fine stringy lacing. nose of plums and sweet malts. Pleasant and drinkable brew, notes of caramel, maple sugars and some lightly toasted malts and darker burnt malt notes. Lingering finish with another hint of plums. Nice, drinkable wintery brew.

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Photo of 22Blue
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.3/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown body, reddish 'round the edges, under a fizzy, cocoa-colored head that slips down to size with a quickness.
Aroma, dark fruits, nuts, nuts, some spices, a bit cola-esque, but it gets better through time, opens up and becomes more awake and alive, feels like a snootful of a dank pine forest and all that comes with it...
Taste: quite interesting, dark, spicy, malty, but mellow, and I taste further things now, maple, rum, molasses, more than I can't exactly finger, though more able, adept minds surely could. Feels more complex of an ale the more I sip into it, and instantly qualifies as the best brew from Shipyard I've sampled so far. Rich flavor, sometimes fruity, sometimes treacly continues to delight, and altogether this brew is a worthy ale to close a night in freezy mid-January Minnesota. If I had further samples at my side, this is one winter brew I could really get comfortable with!
Cheers to another fine Maine brew, and to rabidawg for sending it my way!

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
3/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It pours jet black leaving a one inch foamy lumpy off-white head. The head slowly dies to a centimeter lasting a little longer in my nonic. Minimal lacing is left. The smell is slightly malty and has a dry coffee aroma coming through as the beer warms. The taste is bittersweet through the malts and the dry coffee. The palate is about a light to medium with lots of harshness coming through at all angles, kinda bad for an English Porter or cross with a Scottish ale. Though this is is fairly drinkable, overall, I’m not impressed with this one.

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Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of beernads
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

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Shipyard Longfellow Winter Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
3.84 out of 5 based on 195 ratings.
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