Winter Ale Special Edition 2006-07 | Mendocino Brewing Company

19 Ratings
no score
Send samples
Winter Ale Special Edition 2006-07Winter Ale Special Edition 2006-07

Brewed by:
Mendocino Brewing Company
United States

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by MaltyGoodness on 11-12-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 19 |  Reviews: 18
Reviews by GCBrewingCo:
Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.53/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass translucent black with a frothy brown head which rose slowly and held it's level for an incredibly long time as it lace the glass.

The aroma was coffee and chocolate with a strong expresso presence. Also present was caramel and some diacetyl.

The flavor was thin with coffee and chocolate and some caramel. Diacetyl was present in the flavor as was roast. The flavor also had a bit of a grassy note and an acrid bit of sourness that was beginning to develop.

The finish was dry with lasting coffee, chocolate, roast and a bit of grass into the aftertaste. The body was medium at best with a much lower than anticipated carbonation level. This one tastes like it would be past it's prime, but since it was only recently released it could not be. Not one to seek out.

12 ounce bottle.

 825 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Mendocino's Winter Ale for 2006-2007 is a rich, dark, and strong oatmeal stout. It pours an opaque black body beneath a frothy head of very dark tan foam. The head retention is a bit better than average, but the lacing is limited. In the nose it's rich, roasty, and chocolatey. There are lots of notes of coffee, but just a suggestion of hops in the background. In the flavor, the acidic dark malts and a cusp of dark fruit appear up front. As it warms across the middle, more black chocolate, coffee, and scorched brown sugar appear. The oats are evident as well, yet the alcohol is almost completely cloaked! It's backed by a firm bitterness, and the acidity of the roasted malts helps to balance it as well. It finishes with a lingering roastiness that gently fades with time. Quite nice!

 791 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.85/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle courtesy of beastiefan2k (from RB) at BCTC 2007.

A: The stout pours thick and black, viscous and oily like the best of the stouts. Atop the dark body rests a cappucino colored foam that leaves no trail in the glass.

S: The nose is a great imperial stout, full of chocolatey roasted notes and a thick graininess that has a vinous complexity. Milk chocolate sweetness and some alefruits round out the nose.

T: While the nose projects impy stout, the flavor returns to the oatmeal stout. Some dark roasted notes aboud but they are nicely cut by the oatmeal sweetness. Overall, a dry roasted finish returns at the end to leave a lasting flavor in the mouth.

M: The mouthfeel is thin at times, but when it is one, there are a bunch of deep dark full flavors that really grab you.

D: The abv is well hidden and the roasted flavors are paired nicely with the oatmeal sweetness.

 900 characters

Photo of plaid75
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep black hue with a one finger dark tan creamy head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell consisted of a solid burnt grain aroma with hints of coffee, cocoa and sweet caramel malt.

The taste was upfront burnt grain and caramel and chocolate malts. Excellent coffee bitterness as well.

The mouthfeel was of medium fullness with a dry finish.

Overall a very nice and highly drinkable oatmeal stout. Another excellent winter brew from Mendocino. Solid ABV as well.

 496 characters

Photo of briscott99
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a nice thick foamy head 3/4 of an inch or so and the head really sticks to the glass. The smell is, well, subtle... a little coffee, some tobacco, but the aroma isn't exactly smacking you in the face. Allowing the beer to warm up a bit does bring the aromas forward a bit. The taste is roasty... a good bit of caramel sweetness in there and a tiny taste of bittering hops on the end. Delicious and perfect for a cold night. Good mouthfeel... full bodied but slightly thinner than other American stouts I've tasted, but I this isn't a bad thing.

All in all, a nice showing by Mendocino. I definitely recommend it and will continue to buy it while it's available.

 679 characters

Photo of PBoegel
3.26/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

presentation 12 oz bottle poured into "duvel tulip" glass.

A: pours a midnight no moonlight black body with a dense brown head about two fingers thick, which sits nicley for a few minutes before rolling back, looks very clean and properly carbonated.

S: smells of cocoa butter, warm fudge, roasted oats and nuts, some earthy hop notes. Some interesting caramel and roasted coffee notes as the beer warms.

T: roasted oats and more roastiness melds into a mellow dark chocolate fudge sweetness finishes with a touch of hop bitterness and perhaps some mild but well balancing astringency.

M: just slighly short of full bodied, expected oats powered "slickness" is present, lightly carbonated and finishes medium dry.

D: A bit less of an wallop than I think I anticipated here at 7%, this brew masks its alcohol character very well (as to most Mendocino brews). Not as spectacular as last years Imperial IPA, but very approachable and a beer for the season that you could have a couple of in an evening and enjoy very much.

 1,034 characters

Photo of MaltyGoodness
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle - Brewed and Bottled by Mendocino in Saratoga Springs

Pours a rich black color with a creamy cocoa head that thins. Spotty lacing on the glass.

Aroma of roasted malts with some light coffee and cocoa tones.

Dark roasted malt flavor upfront leading into some rich cocoa and espresso flavors with a light smokiness.Finishes dry with just a touch of hops and a lingering roasted malt taste.

Medium-light body, nice carbonation.

This is a very nice oatmeal stout, and very easy to drink. What a nice treat. Hopefully they decide to brew this one more than one time... I think it's much better than their Black Hawk stout.

 645 characters

Photo of robbyc1
3.66/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark black, non-seethrough look - looks a bit oily like a Oatmeal Stout should.

Smells of roasty malts, nothing special.

Taste of strong chocolate/oatmeal malt, deep and roasty, astringent, ending is not sweet nor sour. Coats the mouth nicely.

Very fully and goes down well, drinkable but one is enough. Would like a bit of sweetness like the one from Sam Smith.

 365 characters

Photo of rodrot
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found a couple of sixers of this Winter beer at a local grocery store and was surprised that it was an oatmeal stout. It was on sale for 5.99 so I figured what the hell. The beer poured nearly black with just the faintest light shining through the glass and a solid 1 inch tan head. Aroma was typical for the style: coffeeish and roasty with some hints of licorice. Taste was nice and roasty, with a good dose of bitter chocolate, licorice and burnt flavors. Mouthfeel was smooth and light-medium in the palate. Drinkability was very good, with the relatively high alcohol barely detectable in each swallow. Kudos one again to this brewery for putting out an unusual style as their Winter brew.

 694 characters

Photo of riversider76
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black, thin tan head with good retention,and pleanty of lace. Smell is of roasted malts,and coco. Body is thick, with just a hint of carbonation. Taste...I did'nt realize this was an oatmeal stout when I bought it. Roasted, and malty with coffee undertones. I've tried other oatmeal stouts and did not like them as much as this one.

 338 characters

Photo of perfectkaos
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought this beer because I had previously enjoyed Mendocino's other offerings, particularly the White Hawk IPA. I was looking for a winter/Christmas beer as it is the season, and this beer was a pleasant surprise.

Initally upon realizing that the beer was an oatmeal stout, I thought I had invested in a case of beer that I wasnt particulary going to like, but I was proven wrong.

The beer pours dark brown in color with a dark creamy head that was around a quarter inch thick in a tumbler and slightly larger in a pint glass. I am not a stout drinker by any means, but I found this beer to be quite smooth, definately drinkable. Plus the 7% gives it a great winter warmer character without going overboard.

 715 characters

Photo of ZAP
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Black with a creamy brown head

S-Nice notes of java, dark cocoa, and a softer, sweeter milk chocolate aroma

T-Full flavored for an oatmeal stout...again the java emerges first followed by a layered cocoa/chocolate flavor...finishes with a little coffee like acidity.

M-Creamy, and very full bodied for an OS....this has some heft to it.

D-Been drinking a few Oatmeal Stout's this winter and this is one of the better ones...perhaps I like it more because it is built as a bigger OS than most....whatever the case I would definitely recommend this one if you like this style...

 590 characters

Photo of Bighuge
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The pour seems quite thick. Body is black. And a thick crop of brown head is erected on the surface. Retention isn't all that good but the lacing comes in nice swaths. The aroma contains nice notes of coffee bean, chocolate, cocoa and roasted malt. This all carries over nicely to the palate. But there's also a sweetish caramel malt aspect present as well. And some burnt malt tones. Body is medium to medium-full. Nice, smooth, agreeable feel. Good beer.

I really look forward to Mendocino's Winter Ale every year. Not because it just fucking kicks ass. But because I know it'll usually be some kind of style that I like and it'll usually be a pretty good interpretation of that style. That holds true this year.

 718 characters

Photo of HopDerek
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has a very thick pour, almost like syrup. Color is very dark brown, almost black, with a nice thick brown head that settles quickly. Good lacing too. Smells of chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt. Taste starts off with a sweet caramel, followed by chocolate and then a coffee finish. Not quite a full bodied beer, but its very smooth and the alcohol is covered up. Highly drinkable, and I'm not much one for oatmeal stouts. Great winter ale.

 451 characters

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.3/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a perfect black body, with a towering brown head which leaves sticky lace.

Nose is heavy with roasted coffee and chocolate.

Taste is similarly heavy with roasted coffee, milk chocolate, a dash of dark fruits, oats, and a tiny smidgen of alcohol. Very well blended. Somewhat rich but very quaffable.

Mouthfeel is fullish, slick, but not particularly oily.

A challenge to find this year, but I'm glad I did. You might not know what Mendocino's Winter Ale is from year to year, but it has been consistently good.

 527 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a black body with a dense, lush tan-colored head (a shame it had to fizzly out so quickly).

Smell: Aroma of creamy, semi-sweet chocolate, sugar cookie dough, and heavily roasted grains.

Taste: A nice blend of dark chocolate and roasty coffee overtones. Hints of licorice. Faint flowery hops appear on the dusty, dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, but quite smooth on the palate. Mild carbonation.

Drinkability: It was a fine winter seasonal when it was originally released last year, and, to me, remains as one of Mendocino's better beers.

 564 characters

Photo of AndoBrew
2.9/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

*did not like will not buy*

app: looks muddy , small lil tan suddy head.

smell: brown sugar, molasses, smells to sweet. nothing bad though.

taste: some smoked sausage, some sweet but very smoked copies of the flavors in the nose. ah, so much smoke. not a big fan.. at least its not to sweet. give it a 3 only cause of the after taste that is full of coffee and good stout flavors.. after the smoke clears.

mf: cool refreshing, to thin but ok

drinkable?: with a biscuit for breakfast.. sure. to smoked, nothing rich and wonderful to keep the glass from sitting by itself with lots of beer in it.

 599 characters

Photo of rajendra82
3.76/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The special edition release of Mendocino Winter 2006-07 is listed as a “full bodied Oatmeal Stout”. The looks were certainly appropriate, as the dark brown beer formed a tan colored and thick head that stuck around. The lacing was surprisingly sparse for such a foamy liquid, and this might have had something to do with fat in the oats. Aroma was mild with coffee beans, vanilla, and tobacco leaf, which were all rather distant than in your face. The taste was sweet chocolate, light bodied creamy coffee, and faintly herbal hops. A very smooth bodied beer, this lacked the roasty punch that I have tasted among big stouts from the West Coast. If soothing and gentle beers are to your liking, get this one while it lasts.

 724 characters

Photo of dgherm
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Winter Ale Special Edition 2006-07 from Mendocino Brewing Company
3.82 out of 5 based on 19 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.