Frosted Frog Christmas Ale | Hoppin' Frog Brewery

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Frosted Frog Christmas AleFrosted Frog Christmas Ale

Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery
Ohio, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.60%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by paco1029384756 on 11-16-2009

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Reviews: 144 | Ratings: 407
Photo of mtnbikerpa
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from bomber bottle into 2 small snifters one for me and one for my wife. Poured nice and dark with a ruby tone. About an inch of fading head. Smells like mincemeat pie in my glass. Tastes like ginger bread, nutmeg, clove and cinnamon. Many spices that linger on the tongue. Alcohol is well hidden.
Most certainly a winter sipper. Almost a perfect match to go with oatmeal raisin cookies.

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Photo of prototypic
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Frosted Frog pours a dark amber color. It's a little hazy, but plenty of light bleeds through and reveals nice scarlet highlights. An off-white head caps it off and stands nearly two fingers tall. It's relatively quick to recede and leaves very light, spotty lace behind.

The nose is not deep or complex, but is good. It's full of holiday spices throughout. There's definitely no shortage of cinnamon. Ginger and nutmeg and present to a lesser extent, but cinnamon is very prominent throughout. Caramel malt adds a sweet scent to it. There's some light yeast and hops on the tail. Alcohol is buried. I'm not getting any at all. Overall, it smells good. I like it.

The flavor is, for all intents and purposes, a carbon copy of the nose. Holiday spices are the focal point and resonate throughout each sip. Cinnamon is front and center, but nutmeg and ginger are noted. It's almost a little too cinnamon heavy. Not quite, but close. Caramel malts anchor it down nicely and give it just enough of a sweet flavor to complement the spices well. A little yeast is noted. Alcohol is blended extremely well. I'm amazed that this is an 8.6% beer. I would've guessed closer to 6%. It does not seem as strong as it is in any way. It finishes a little sweet and spicy.

Frosted Frog has a medium body that is nice and smooth. Carbonation is dialed down to just the right level. It's not quite thick enough to be creamy, but that's not a big knock on it. It has a nice feel. Drinkability is very high. This is tasty stuff that's deceptively strong. I could probably take down a couple of bombers and be very happy to do so. Gotta be a little careful with this frog.

Frosted Frog is an impressive Winter Warmer. I like it a lot. More than I thought I would. I do think there's slightly too much cinnamon. But, there's not too much else to gripe about. Great Lakes Christmas Ale has been my favorite of the season for a while. Frosted Frog doesn't change that, but it's certainly a contender. I'll be sure to pick up at least a couple of bombers annually. Definitely check it out if you have the opportunity. Merry Christmas!

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.57/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance - a warm caramel amber glow as this is poured into a wine glass. A light manila head is thin but with good cling.

Aroma - the aroma of cinnamon cookies, fruitcake, ginger, very Christmassy.

Taste - graham cracker, gingery malts, level sweetness but not too much. Cinnamon and spice with a light bitterness on the swallow for a touch of balance, a nicely put together beer. Finishes with a hint of abv.

Mouthfeel - crisp, medium body maybe a touch weighty.

Drinkability - a great beer while we're making final preps for Christmas '09. Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good pint!

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Photo of jdflyer06
4.23/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into my St. Bernardus Goblet.

A: A deep brown with some ruby characteristics when held to the light. Clear body and no head.

S: Spicy, with plenty of cinnamon, ginger and other assorted spices. Some bready notes and some bannana esters. Fruity and very festive.

M: Light to medium body, mild carbonation and the alcohol is very well hidden. The spiciness tickles the palate as it goes down.

T: Like ginger bread, exactly like ginger bread. Malty and rich. I'll take this over egg nogg any day. Some mild, dark fruit flavors come out at the end with a nice peppery finish.

O: This is what a Christmas Ale should be. Completely different. It doesn't taste like a year round brew with some minor changes. This one is very unique, and very good.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dec 23, 2009
A Christmas gift from Fred, during my visit to the Hoppin' Frog Brewery. Merry Christmas!

A: Thin, iced tea appearance with very little head that disappears almost immediately.

S: CINNAMON I SAID! Fred brews exclusively with Penzey's spices. Fresh cinnamon and nutmeg comprise the initial scent, and honestly, it's hard to smell much else. That being said, it is a very pleasant aroma appropriate for the holiday season.

T: The cinnamon and nutmeg are dominant, which overpowers any ginger flavors intended (as stated on the label). Lingering spice hangs out for a while between sips. I wish this bigger was thicker.

M: Too thin, low carbonation

D: I recommend sharing this with a few folks. As I mentioned, I feel that this beer is too thin and the low carbonation adversely affects the drinkability.

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Photo of beerman207
4.42/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a cloudy reddish brown with a small head and some lacing

S- Wow - the spices in this come in the nose very quickly and are very apparent - nutmeg, gingerbread, vanilla

T- Like the nose - very delici8ous - ginger, cinnamin, vanilla, some slight citrus

M- medium bodied- creamy - could be a bit thicker.

D- I'm going to call this the best Xmas ale I've had this season - fantastic beer.

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Photo of BB1313
3.93/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had high hopes for this one. The problem is it's a spice overload. It pours a darker brown w/ lackluster head. The smell is cin, nutmeg and ginger. Outstanding aromas! It smells like Christmas, they totally nailed it! The taste is pretty sweet and the spice overload makes this one hard to drink.. and I love cin, ginger, etc. It's like chewing on a raw cinnamon stick!!! They had the right vision, just need to tone it down. Nice sipper.

This beer needs to be aged and it would be more enjoyable. It's a great beer to share during the holidays though.

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Photo of bamadog
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pour is from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: A nice deep coppery color; comes with a 1/2 finger off-white head that fades quickly to a thin and uneven skim; body is a little cloudy; a few drops of spotty lacing hold to the glass; slow carbonation bubbles up in thin streams.

Smell: Strong and spicey - predominantly ginger, cinammon and a slight bit of nutmeg. Very nice smells and comes across like desert.

Taste: Very unique with that strong ginger flavor -- not completely different from other Christmas ales considering the other spices, but I find the ginger to be a nice touch; definite presence of alcohol in the back and on the breath; reminds me of a gingerbread cookie when I factor in the sweeter malty backing as well.

Mouthfeel: Very nice overall - body is moderately thick and leaves a firm coating on the roof; carbonation is strong, but not sharp so it keeps the thicker body slightly lively; the thicker coating really allows the sweet and spicey flavors to linger.

Drinkability: Moderately high, even though the ABV is 8.6%; I'm really digging the flavors and this would be a great dessert beer.

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Photo of endincolorado
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy, deep copper color with a decent amount of fizzy, light tan head that settles slowly and leavs behind a good amount of lace.

Strong aromas of cinammon, nutmeg, and allspice, along with something faintly reminiscent of anise or black licorice- also some ginger and bready malt.

Again, heavy on spices (this is an understatement). Drinks like a liquid gingerbread cookie. Very toasty and sweet. Zero hop flavor (as far as I can tell).

Mouthfeel is medium-full, with a creamy texture and moderate amount of foamy carbonation.

Spices are a little heavy when considering drinkability, but a a bottle of this would be perfect for sipping around the holidays.

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Photo of SammyDavisJrJrJr
3.2/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Makin' beer cookies, and this beer seems like it could lend more than just a few flavors to this dessert. From a 22 oz bomber, into the KBS snifter...

A - A translucent dark orange body rests under a finger of orangeish-tan head after a normal pour. Very little retention or lacing.

S - Interesting thing I noticed about the aroma of this beer. When I was far away, all I could smell was the ginger. When I as up close though, the nutmeg dominated, with only a hint of cinnamon, and no ginger. Hmmm...

T/M - Very mild amber malt sweetness, with lots of ginger right upon entry. At mid-palate, the cinnamon and nutmeg seem to hit, and help dry the beer out a bit, assisting the balancing hops. The finish is mild, but lingers with mild sweet malt, ginger, hop spice, alcohol bite and drying cinnamon hanging around for quite a while. This beer manages to be dense and quite carbonated at the same time.

D - Well, I remember my Dad telling me that if you're going to do something, do it all the way... and that is certainly what these guys did. If you're looking for a big ass winter warmer, here you go...

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.47/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this brew in a trade with projectflam86, Thanks Kyle!

22oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

Slightly hazed red/amber color with a small beige head that thinned to a ring and left a bit of lacing.
Wow, this is a Christmas beer!... it smells like a gingerbread cookie.
The taste follows through with the smell all the spices and flavors that come with Christmas is in this beer.
Medium bodied with a nice, smooth feel.
It's very drinkable indeed, just be aware of the high abv.

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Photo of jampics2
4.32/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into my Great Lakes X-Mas Ale snifter.

Looks nice - brownish-red, almost plum color. Initial head dissipates and barely lurks on the edges.

Smells awesome. Cinnamon, ginger, and a sweet vanilla flavor dominate the nose.

Taste is amazing. You'll either love or hate this because it's heavy on the spice. It starts out with some apple-cider sweetness and cinnamon, then a nice amount of malt supports a takes over and lets the graham cracker and other spices take over. This is almost the X-mas equivalent of Southern Tier's Halloween beer, Pumking. Both are so heavily spiced that the malt and hops and traditional elements in the nose and taste are really washed out, but both beers have their role as spiced ales and excell at capturing a warm, fond feeling those spices convey.

Mouth is good. A little still across the lips but nice carb emerges on the tongue. Appropriate body for a winter warmer.

Drinkabiliy is good for me. Others may get tired of the flavor, but I'm judging this against more traditional and boring winter warmers. I could certainly have a few of these to get cheery!

A great beer from Hoppin Frog. This has been a good year with BA BORIS, Hopmasters Abbey, and now this all serving as excellent representations of their styles. Cheers and happy holidays Fred Karm and crew!

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Photo of Goldopelgt
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a cloudy reddish-brown with a tan head that fades somewhat slowly...decent amount of lacing

S- TONS of spice...cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, among others...sugary malts and just a hint of citrus...

T- Similar to the smell...lots of spice and a little sweet (but not too sweet)...seems to mellow out a bit and hit a better balance between the spiciness, sweetness, and maltiness as it warms

M- Medium bodied, with right amount of carbonation...but seems a little thin to me

D- Not really what I was expecting, but I have to say I'm impressed...really does taste like what I can only describe as 'Christmas'...looking forward to having this one again and again and again...

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Photo of Zorro
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear red colored ale with a good sized light brown head with some staying power.

Smell is all about spices. Lemon peel, vanilla, allspice and cinnamon are the strongest scents. Little bit of spruce and cookie dough scent, but it is much milder.

Starts out a little sweet with a STRONG spice flavor, pretty much allspice and vanilla with some apple pie. Tastes something like Pumpkin pie spice mix. Little bit of bread and cookie flavor but this is mostly spice.

Mouthfeel is good.

Interesting beer, but you had BETTER want lots of spice. Most of the beer flavors are obscured. Just about the most heavily spiced beer I have yet tasted excluding Cave Creek Chile Beer.

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Photo of JLebowski
4.47/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first review, but remember this is just like, my opinion, man.

Appearance- My pour was somewhat gentle but the head was small, not too small, but small none the less. I really like the color of this brew, darker redish brown/brownish red, looks pretty appetizing once you hold it up to the light.

Smell- After smelling this, you might ask yourself: "Oh, Jesus, what's that smell, man?" Don't worry though, its not vagrant. Huge, I mean huge smell of nutmeg and cinnamon. I'm gonna be stoked if this beer taste anything like it smells, could be the best xmas beer I've had, if so.

Taste- Wow, this beer does not disappoint, if anything the taste is even stronger than the smell, I personally consider that a good thing. I can taste nutmeg, cinnamon and black licorice(?) Maybe? I think so....

Mouthfeel: Smooth, man, smooth. A little carbonation at the end but not too much.

Drinkability: I happen to like strong, tasteful beers, and that's exactly what this is. If you like em' strong, then this beer is definitely for you. If you're not a big fan of spice, then you might wanna pass. But I do mind, the Dude minds. This will not stand, ya know, this aggression will not stand, man. Actually, you should still try it.

I bought this for 7.99 which is pretty decent for a bomber in these parts, but uh, I'm just gonna go find a cash machine, so I can buy some more...

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Photo of BeerVikingSailor
4.72/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Was very eager to try this new Christmas Ale; actually had it at the brewery with the owner / brewer, can't get much better or fresher than that! Support your locals, fellas!

Appearance was very good, not much head or retention, but typical of this style....

Smell was awesome, if you enjoy highly spiced holiday beers, with "in your face" cinnamon notes with other background spices creeping in quickly, you will love this one! If you do not think of Christmas while sipping this one, check your pulse! The brewer told me he found and used some very intense Vietnamese cinnamon, added cold after fermentation....amazing stuff!

Taste of this new brew was freakin' amazing! My new favorite holiday beer, and I have tried nearly 20 so far this season! Potent at 8.6%, but well balanced malt flavors and seriously intense spices, and high alcohol well hidden and nicely balanced. You could sip this one all night on Christmas Eve, and Santa would be your very best friend.

Mouthfeel is very good indeed, wanted to keep drinking this one, had to show some restraint at the brewery!

Fred has a real winner here, seek this one out and hope that you have friends in Ohio this year, to hook you up! This holiday beer rocks! Very cool label, with Frosted Frog complete with Santa hat....nicely done!

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Photo of miketd
3.37/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours dark bronze with a foamy, off white head. Aroma is straight cinnamon with some ginger and candy. Flavor is very spicy cinnamon... maybe too much. It gets easier to drink as it warms. Nice mouthfeel and body. This is a decent beer, but won't replace Great Lakes as my favorite winter seasonal. 8 bucks is too much for a bomber.

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Photo of sigaro
4.37/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

"Christmas in a glass" is the best way to describe this beer.

22oz bomber poured clear, caramel brown. Small head that dissipates quickly like most spiced brews I've had. Must be something in the spices that kills retention.

Aromatics are INTENSE. You can smell the cinnamon while you're filling your pint glass. Ginger and nutmeg come through with power as well but the cinnamon is bold yet refined.

Taste was similar o the aromatics, though not as intense. The ginger is more dominant than the cinnamon that was so strong in the aromatics. The combination of the two give this beer a near perfect balance.

Medium bodied and great carbonation.

The label is nicely done with a comical santa hat on the classic frog icon. (Note: they peel off extremely easy for homebrewers like me)

Overall, this is the first Xmas beer I actually thought tasted like "Christmas in a glass". It's what I expected a seasonal holiday beer to taste like years ago when I first had one; warm, christmas flavors (cookies, gingerbread, etc). This is a sipper, I could only drink one bomber of this in a sitting.
Hoppin' Frog makes some of the boldest beers in the area and they don't seem to shy away from serving up intensity. This is one of there better concoctions I've had.

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Photo of paco1029384756
4.49/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice, clear caramel color with a small off white head.

Scent of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, sugars, earth, caramel, some dark fruit, and a hint of roasted malts. This is fantastic, it smells like Christmas cheer and nostalgia.

Taste of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, caramel, some dark fruit, and sugars. It starts a bit too sweet and finishes a bit too spicy. This has instantly become one of my favorite Winter seasonals, and this is one of the very few beers that I can say tastes like Christmas.

Mouthfeel is medium heavy bodied with a small bite of bubbly carbonation, very nice.

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Frosted Frog Christmas Ale from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
3.72 out of 5 based on 407 ratings.
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