Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale | Anderson Valley Brewing Company

Winter Solstice Seasonal AleWinter Solstice Seasonal Ale
1,810 Ratings
Winter Solstice Seasonal AleWinter Solstice Seasonal Ale

Brewed by:
Anderson Valley Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Winter Solstice® is our take on the classic style of “winter warmer.” Boasting a deep amber hue and rich mouthfeel, its creamy finish will lift your spirits. Hints of toffee, spice, and caramel tease the senses making this the perfect ale to share with friends and family during the cold days and long nights of winter.

Added by maxpower on 11-18-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,810 |  Reviews: 732
Photo of beagle75
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. can into a nonic glass.

A: Slightly hazy, light amber color with one finger of diminishing light beige foam head. Scant lacing remains on the glass.

S: Caramel is well developed. Mixed fruit is cooked but not spiced; butterscotch underscores more obvious qualities.

T: Begins off-dry, with remarkably transformed malt that is bold but not at all grainy. Fermentation qualities from the smell develops early; honest yeast esters followed by a trace of complementary diacetyl. Acidity is restrained into the middle where malt and yeast features grow in complexity, intensely toasty and a bit vinous, but become more nuanced in intensity. Fruit darkens considerably by the end, sweetens up a bit with the affectation of brown sugar, and spices in the form of black pepper, nutmeg, and lesser cloves are exhibited for the first time.

M: Medium viscosity, slightly syrupy on the palate, with low carbonation.

D/O: More old ale than winter warmer, this beer makes an impressive collection of English ale qualities. This should come as no surprise to those who have crossed the path of Anderson Valley's ESB. While not perfect, it delivers a combination of features that are rare in American-brewed ales, much less those packaged in a can.

 1,258 characters

Photo of nsabo
2.24/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

The smell is awesome - cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and everything nice. Pretty stoked to sip it!
Hmm, tastes way too sweet. I don't drink soda, but this tastes like what I remember a cream soda tasted like. I've heard nothing but praise for this brewery and believe what I hear, but this still tastes like artificial flavors were added. Very faint piney hops, vanilla, white wine that’s been sitting out uncorked for a while, and honey.
Definitely a dessert beer, but even then, this is way too sweet for me.

 507 characters

Photo of hanlonrn
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of buckyp
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Stinger80OH
2.75/5  rDev -28.9%

Photo of buiter
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of avaldivia
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.86/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a nice reddish amber with an off-white 2 finger head. Good retention; the resulting lace thick and sticky.

Smell - Aromas are subtle. Whiffs of sweet malt, and faint vanilla.

Taste - Creamy. Caramel, with notes raspberry and chocolate coming in mid-taste and into the finish. Aftertaste fades with a cream vanilla quality.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Smooth and creamy. Goes down nice and easy. Carbonation lends to a slight tickle on the back of the tongue.

Overall - Delicious, though a bit light for a Winter Warmer.

 540 characters

Photo of crob3888
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful Amber hue with a nice bubbly head. Aromas and flavors of Christmas fruit cake, plum pudding, and some caramel drizzle. Paired wonderfully with a muenster grilled cheese with caramelized onions and green apple.

 227 characters

Photo of diehl07
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of DerwinWentworth
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of mkdeezy
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of wakajawaka76
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Blargimus
3.64/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass. For the life of me, I cannot find a bottling date on this bottle, but it's a winter seasonal so it's either 6 months or 18 months old.

Pours a very hazy brown, maybe a finger of white head that fades very quickly.

Very sweet smell, maple syrup and graham cracker. A hint of nuttiness. No hop smell, but that might be due to age.

Taste is also quite sweet. Heavier on the nuttiness, lighter on the graham cracker. More bitterness than I expected, but not real hoppiness.

Pretty thick for a brown ale, and creamy level of carbonation.

At 6 months old, this is solid. I'd like to try it a little fresher.

 643 characters

Photo of JJOVa
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of djrn2
3/5  rDev -22.5%

Photo of Nage37
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Piason
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of KajII
3.54/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

[Best served in a Lager glass]

The pour was a murky reddish amber with an average sized (1-2 finger) light beige creamy head that was mostly diminishing, reducing down to a thin film with a small collar and a little spotty lacing.

The aroma was of a toasted dark bread malt and a sweet doughy yeast with notes of toffee, caramel, dark fruit (figs and dates) vanilla and a hint of nutmeg.

The taste was malty sweet with notes of vanilla and toffee right off with the finish being about the same except for hints of dark fruit and nutmeg towards the end. The flavor stuck around for an average time after the swallow, allowing the sweet fruity spice taste to linger for a little while.

Mouthfeel was almost medium in body with a nice smooth creamy texture and a mild soft carbonation.

Overall a brew that smells as good as it tastes. It has the right blending of ingredients and flavors, making it quite an enjoyable drinking experience...

 943 characters

Photo of Happy_Camper
1/5  rDev -74.2%

Photo of Kegatron
3.28/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz can into a pint glass.

Pours a clear copper ruby, with a couple fingers of rich and foamy off-white head. This retains with a big frothy finger, which just drenches the sides of the glass with thick sticky lacing. The aroma smells lightly grassy with some festive feeling spices. Bready sweetness and a touch of dark fruitiness, like cherry, mix in as well. This has a bit of a gingerbread feel to it in the nose.

The taste is dark fruit, sweet doughy sugars, and spices, with a bit of green citrus working itself into here as well. Flavors are here but this lacks some pop. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with soft and creamy carbonation and just a light crispness on the tongue. This is really easy feeling in the mouth overall.

Eh. I liked the flavors that were present in this but I just wish that there was more to them. They just lacked robustness and a reason to go back after each sip of this. The easy feeling body kept this in the game some but otherwise, this was fairly forgettable.

 1,007 characters

Photo of rarbring
3.05/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The beer is clouded brown, a warm off-white head with little lacing but good curtains.

A smell of roasted nuts, bread, buns and spices. "Assorted small candy".

Very sweet, intensely vanilla, muffin batter, caramel and toffee, ginger bread sponge.

Little carbonation, soft and sticky, rather light body, no dryness.

Very christmassy, but owz too sweet.

 355 characters

Photo of tina
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Zachtheporter
3.25/5  rDev -16%

Photo of johunnic
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 1,810 ratings
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