Redhook Winterhook | Redhook Ale Brewery

BA SCORE
81
good
473 Reviews
Redhook WinterhookRedhook Winterhook
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Redhook Ale Brewery
New Hampshire, United States
redhook.com

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Regardless of whether you spend your winter months on the slopes, shoveling your driveway or just hiding out, Redhook Winterhook is a great way to chase off the winter chill. This year will be our 27th consecutive release of Winterhook. The recipe changes slightly every winter because nobody likes getting the exact same Holiday present year after year. Redhook’s 27th brew of Winterhook has roasted chocolate notes that smooth out the quick, spicy hop finish. The rich body and nutty, malty backbone make this winter ale slighty naughty and very nice.

38 IBU

Added by Todd on 10-08-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
473
Ratings:
943
Avg:
3.57
pDev:
13.45%
 
 
Wants:
26
Gots:
86
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 473 | Ratings: 943
Photo of CultureJamMN
3.33/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Local Macro watering hole had this on-tap, since it was the only thing that wasn't macro-lager, i figured i would give it a go (ESB was also on tap, had that too)

A darkish amber hue with red around the edges, virtually no head, and minimal lacing.

The smell seemed weak to me, but i did pick up caramel malts, with a note of citrus, and something approaching toast that's just a little overdone (not charred)

Good malts in the first tast, but nothing to write home about. The hops come on later, and actually leave a bit of an unpleasant aftertaste. The citrus notes are there, but the caramel stands out.

This was thin for a winter warmer... mine felt a bit over carbonated as well, though that may own to the bar where i was at.

all in all, if you're drinking warmers, there are better out there. but if you're stuck in macro-land, and this is your craft/micro option, go for it.

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Photo of cschepers
3.63/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

A - pours a nice clear red. Bit of cream head. Nice lacing.

S - Not a whole lot going on. Little bit of sweetness & malt. Little bits of spice.

T - A bit of the same. Some spice and caramel sweetness, some nice evergreen hops. Hopped a bit more heavily than I'd expect... it isn't really all that much, just a little bit more than I'd expect in balance to the malt. Finishes with a bit more spice and the hops.

M - Fairly thin, nice carbonation.

D - Pretty good. Wouldn't be hard to finish several of these.

Ok winter warmer, nothing terribly exciting. There are better ones out there, but this is worth a try.

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Photo of Hawthorne
3.3/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The pour was a mild amber with a festive white head. The smell had a distictive pine scent which foreshadowed the hops to come. I'd concur with the previous reviewer who suggested this was one of the hopiest seasonal ales. Indeed, they made this beer as crisp as the season it celebrates. Happy Holidays!

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Photo of redwolf1
2.94/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-12oz. long neck bottle with a bottled date of 10/04/05. Also, the label on the bottle has changed in comparison to the one shown. Poured a nice dark auburn with about 1/4 inch head. In fact, a very nice head is still present halfway through drinking and about 10 minutes later. Good retention.
S-The smell is a little hard to pinpoint because I can't quite figure out if there is a smell at all. Not much there to speak of.
T&M-The sweetness that most winter seasonals have is not present, although it does go down smooth, probably because of the malt. Very subtle alcohol bite at the back of the throat reminiscent of good English ales (but like I said, reminiscent, not equal to).
D-Is the beer drinkable? Of course it is. Like many of us have stated before, we'd probably drink several if given the choice, but it's also not an awe-inspiring beer for the style, rather average in my opinion.

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Photo of wesl56
3.04/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a) looks great, nice reddish color with a good sized head at first that leaves pretty heavy lacing all the way down

s) i didnt really notice much smell, slightly hoppy, floral hints

t) taste is rather weak, almost watered down... does leave a nice "ale-ish" aftertaste

m) medium-light, carbonation evident

d) very easy to drink, as i said tastes a little on the watery side

overall, not disappointed, but was expecting something different from a "winter beer" probably would not buy again

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Photo of ntillemans
3.1/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured out into a pint glass.

A - dark amber, tan-brownish...low carbonation...less than a finger of head was gone within minutes

S - Slight roastiness and maltiness and a hint of fruitiness...but the overall culmination of that balance was neither appealing nor very potent...no alcohol smell I could detect.

T - I didn't care much for the balance. Not enough malt or (seasonal) fruity charm for a winter. Strong roast overtones and very hoppy (some fruitiness) but a very dry finish that I disliked.

M - Bitter, dry finish ... a lot of tingling on my tongue that caused me to salivate for want something a little more malty. This one's missing a fuller body one expects in a winter ale.

D - I may be biased against this one because it's heavy on the bitter hops and light on the maltiness and robustness I tend to enjoy. I could drink several of these and I could think of many beers I would dislike more than this one. I just won't seek this one out.

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Photo of RedLion
4.07/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really think this is a way above average beer. There's nothing on the market quite like it. This brew has a wonderful winter spicyness that I havn't found in any other beer. Truely a perfect compliment for a cold winter night. Like all Redhooks, this beer pours almost too clean, with a good head. But, who really cares how about a beer looks? The important thing is how this tastes. Flavors present are nutmeg and cinammon. It's too bad I can only find it during the winter.

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Photo of BlitzShadow
3.21/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with a newer label than the one pictured (as of 2/27/06) and an embossed "Bottled" date on the bottom-right of the label.

Appearance: Nice reddish-brown hue. 1/2 beige head with impressive retention and lace.

Smell: I detect a fate toasted caramel scent accompanied with some citrus.

Taste: The taste presents the caramel and a toasted malt flavor. The hops add the bitterness and aroma, but I would say to a mild to medium extent. The fruity and spice flavors add to the mix. The alcohol is detectable, but not immediately.

Mouthfeel: Thin-to-medium and smooth body. The carbonation is right on track.

Drinkability - A tasty winter treat that (at 6.0%) will warm you up nice. Also, the alcohol is balanced well with the malt and hops making it easy to drink several before noticing its "warmth".

Notes: It may not be exceptional (a little on the thinner side for a winter beer), but definitely worthy of a six-pack in the fridge for the winter months.

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Photo of VtBrew
3.13/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Color-Dark Red almost garnet like. Head is frothy long lasting and nice lacing.

Aroma-Deep Malty warm aroma caramel notes light hop aroma.

Taste- Strong alcohol taste. Not sure what hop was used but it smells good taste not so much.

Drinkbability- Would be a great winter beer without the scary spice/hop

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Photo of erwin08
3.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a transparent red/brown with minimal head and lacing.

S: smells malty with hints of carmel and fruit

T: this is a winter? much lighter than i expected. malty/carmel taste to it with very slighty hoppiness.

M: again much thinner, smoother, and lighter than i expected from a winter.

D: very drinkable. doesn't pack the punch of most winter beers. not what i had expected, but by no means a bad beer.

OVERALL: A tasty beer from Redhook. Not your typical winter, but still a very drinkable beer with a winter twist. Worth a taste.

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Photo of kwm13
3.77/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer at first appeared to have a nice caramel color to it with a nice head, but upon looking closer, the color appears quite cloudy and the head all but disappeared within a minute.

I get a odd smell out of it, almost smokey, almost flowery...a whole lot of confusion for my nose.

The taste was great, really smooth, good finish. The flavor was plesant but hard to describe. Maybe a little bit of spice to it? A friend tasted it and said it tasted like Bass, but this is much fruitier, not as dry and just not at all like Bass. I've concluded that he doesn't know what he's talking about.

As I drank it I enjoyed it, but searched too hard to describe it to really get the full appreciation for it. It seems like a good balance and just as the smell confused my nose, this is like a combination of personalities in my mouth.

Overall, I really liked the flavor, but to describe it was tough. It's a good winter ale.

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Photo of dteal1
3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

I'm having this one at room temperature. It pours amber with not much of a head. I can smell the spice in it, but just barely. Tastes bitter and dry, slightly spicy. Mouthfeel was smooth and aptly warming. Drinkable? Not very. Too dry. Too boring. Not as good as the Anchor Christmas for sure.

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Photo of noremorse1
3.57/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with a moderate amount of carbonation. Decent sized head that drops off gradually (not before I could get in the first few sips) and a bit of lacing.

Smell is nutty, caramel, hint of chocolate. Detecting a hint of fruit. Spicy as well.Very rich, great smelling beer.

There is a definite presence of malt here. Also, the chocolate smell is complemented by a mild chocolate flavor.

This beer is a little lighter on the palate than I would have expected, but still has a relatively strong body to it. Slightly bitter aftertaste that causes me to take sip after sip.

This beer goes down well. I find myself detecting new flavors with each sip. The folks at ESB have made this year after year since 1985 with good reason; it is a deliciously drinkable beverage. It will not knockout Bell’s Winter Wheat as my favorite winter beer, but I will enjoy this 6-pack and maybe another.

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Photo of Chrisco88
2.91/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured deep amber/brown with a small, bubbly beige head that faded quite quickly.

Aroma: Not very aromatic at all, nothing jumps out. With a bit of swirling I picked up some caramel or roasted smells as well as a bit of spiciness of some sort.

Taste: Quite balanced but a little sweet in the end. Caramel flavor dominate with some roasted malts in there as well. Towards the end there's a tinge of bitterness but there's also a nice earthy spice to ponder.

Palate: For the most part it was smooth but below average carbonation left me with a watery consistency.

Overall: Easy to drink and perfect for cold temperatures so can't ask for much more, but it seems all the flavors and aromas are so bland and subtle there's no reason to choose this over another winter ale.

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Photo of DJW
3.65/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought the last bottle on the shelf at Redmond Trader Joe's. And the brief:
Appearance: med-dark amber or deep copper - clear, w/ a decent head, and lacing still on my empty glass. I thought the beer would pour a darker color.

Smell: light malts and some Cascade hops... more on the citrus hop side of things to my schnoz, but I'm getting over a cold. Inviting (the beer, not the cold).

Taste: nice balance between caramel malts and the hops, with a little biscuity sweetness peeking in at times only to be brought back by the firm hop presence. Finish is lightly bitter and made me salivate ("watery"), which made me want to take another sip.

Overall Thoughts/Opinions: nice and pleasant but not freaking amazing. I think this little option would fit more in a NW IPA category rather than a Winter Warmer, but who am I to advise Redhook? I'll have to try a Jubelale, Snowcap, Celebration, and Sammy Smith Winter Welcome in the near future to see if the Winterhook is more like an IPA or if my preferences/familiarities have changed.

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Photo of lukeoberm963
2.55/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This Beer did not impress me (much like other of the Redhook beers I've tried). I thought that the beer was going to change my mind about Redhook, but instead it isn't showing much in the way of flavor. It is winter in a place notoriously bombarded with snow so I was feeling chipper to drink a WinterAle. I was persuaded by a beer salesman to give it a shot. It poured a dark copper color with a two finger head. The smell was a caramel and toasted malts with whiffs of chocolatiness as well. First, taste. Hmmm... Where'd it all go? I didn't taste much more than what I could just smell. The mouthfeel is nothing short of lame. No chewiness to it at all. The drinkibility may be there where you can keep drinking it without savoring it, but that also means I do not care for savoring, much less drinking too much more of this beer. There are better winter ales that are cheaper than this too! Oh well.

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Photo of jth63
4.21/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Surprisingly I liked this more than expected. Most winter ales are too sweet, spicy or malty. This is well balanced and not loaded with shit that doesn't belong in beer. It does finish a little bitter, but that's okay with me. I think the low ratings are the result of the reviewers expecting lots of nutmeg, allspice, cloves or some other ingredient that doesn't belong.

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Photo of mrfulcher
2.84/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

2016 Edition, 12oz bottle, irish imperial pint

L - Clear, red-brown body. Persistent, one finger deep, barely off-white head. Great retention, thick lacing.
S - Spring water, mildly hoppy, slight hint of spice.
T - Any spice or malt present in the aroma is overpowered by hops. One note bitterness. Aftertaste is more of the same.
F - Excessively thin.
O - Looks good, smells like hoppy water, tastes like an average american ale. Drinkable but not memorable in any way. Definitely would not peg this as a seasonal or winter warmer in a blind trial.

 550 characters

Photo of mhexum
3.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours great with a big head that doesn't stick around long.
Smells wonderful, taste was a little disappointing compared to the smell but still good. This was my first Winter Warmer and I really appreciated the spiciness, it has quite a great full flavor.

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Photo of GardnerAleBrewer
3.21/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer has been going downhill every year I've tasted it. Three years ago it was wonderful: a nice, rich, dark IPA is the only way I could describe it. It had a very cascady nose, and a nice, rich, malty body. Every year since then, it has gotten thinner, less hoppy, and less complex. It is still a good beer, but what are they doing to the recipe? Or is it something else? Redhook produces some great beer for the mass market. This is one that they shouldn't be "watering down".

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Photo of nobbyv
2.17/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

This is for the 32nd bottling of Winterhook, purchased in a 12-pack on 1/7/2017, poured into a pilsner glass.

Pours a darkish brown. Good malty smell. Initial sip is malty with some nutty undertones. This lasts for a solid 3-4 seconds, but then gives way to an overpoweringly bitter aftertaste. Finished two and then gave up on it. Can't drink anymore.

Not a good representation of the style, and not a good beer overall.

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Photo of clipdat
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is my first beer review after visiting this site regularly for over a year..!!

Part of a 6 pack purchased at Beverages & More in Orinda for $5.99 on special. Bottled on 10/11/05. Gently decanted into my red hook pint glass. Color is a nice roasted brown. Very thin head due to the type of pour. Slow-moving, even carbonation throughout. Immediate aromas when pouring were of toffee and and subtle malts. This beer has a very minimal and unique smell to me. It reminds me of samuel smith's nut brown ale, except less hop presence.

After letting the beer warm for 5-7 minutes I took the first sip. The beer has a very calm mouth feel and a pretty clean aftertaste which doesn't seem linger for very long. I noticed some small flavors of bitter chocolate, toffee and subtle hops.

This is one of the easier drinking winter ales I've had, and it's taste somewhat surprised me for a winter ale. A 6.11% ABV is somewhat low for this style, in my opinion. Overall, It has a very unique, easy to enjoy flavor. I'd buy this again in the future.

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Photo of BrewDorkTimes
3.55/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The beer pours a deep chestnut color, and is topped by a toasted-marshmallow head. The smell is dominated by aromas of roasted malts and has a strong coffee/toffee component as well.

On the palate the beer is sweet but balanced, with a touch of bitterness. The toffee flavors are great and are accompanied by notes of chocolate and macadamia nuts. Actually, if I had to sum up this beer en an extremely primitive way, I'd say it tastes the way I would expect a half IPA, half nut-brown Ale to taste. It has notes of chocolate, cream, and roasted malt, but it also has a bitter hop component that you can expect from a good IPA.

The alcohol level is low for a winter seasonal and this beer seems like it would be a very easy beer to pair with food.

If you see it on sale, definitely snatch some up, but otherwise-with so many great winter ales in the market-you could pass on this one without fearing that you had missed anything Earth-shaking.

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Redhook Winterhook from Redhook Ale Brewery
3.57 out of 5 based on 943 ratings.
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