Christmas Ale | Breckenridge Brewery

1,081 Ratings
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Christmas AleChristmas Ale

Brewed by:
Breckenridge Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.10%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
The chill of a Colorado high-country winter calls for a beer with extra flavor and strength. Here it is. At over 7% alcohol, with a sturdy texture and rich flavors of caramel and chocolate, our holiday seasonal is the fermented equivalent of a good fire.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-28-2002

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Ratings: 1,081 |  Reviews: 418
Photo of Fugazme
2.43/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a very light copper... smallish head with decent lacing.

Aroma is not so good... malt and grain... smells like a cheap american lager. Winter Warmer?

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy... Taste isn't as bad as the smell.

Somewhat spicy and hoppy but mostly grain up front, grain on the backend.

I'll pass on the rest of this sixer.

 345 characters

Photo of gordavidson
2.44/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- A very dark amber liquid. Very clear with a thin, white head.

S- Malty and earthy.. thats about it.

T- Sweet, malty, minty. A little leathery. This is just not doing it for me.

M- Decent, not objectionable in any way.

D- Not exactly what I was expecting out of a Christmas ale. I don't really see myself getting this again.

 330 characters

Photo of LXIXME
2.49/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from an inch or so above the glass gives you a pretty decent off white to light brown head resting atop a clear caramel red colored ale.

The aroma is a weak nutmeg and or other Christmas type spices mixed in with some caramel malt.

The taste was pretty weak also, more of the nutmeg and other Christmas type spices with a weak hops and some caramel malt.

A medium bodied beer with a light dry malty aftertaste.

I'll pass on a 2nd one of these.

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Photo of Basoos1
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of carteravebrew
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of Metz
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of vader06
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of jpuetz
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of Kramerbarthomer
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of KingMe
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of RockOnKatie
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of SATBMan
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of supermodified
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of baconman91
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of bunnyhustle
2.51/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle, local shop had these on clearance and well within the "best buy" date so I thought why not? I should have thought not. Poured into pint glass and pours deep, dark red, very dark looking with thin head with poor retention and some lacing. Smell is weak, the only really detectable thing I can find is yeast and bread. It almost smells Belgian-ish. Taste is of some malt, some caramel but with a somewhat sharp alcohol bite towards the end. Moutfeel was very light and watery, it just seemed off. Overall this beer was just very bland in all aspects (smell, taste, moutfeel, ect). It wasnt terrible but I will not revisit this and by far the worst Winter Warmer I've yet to sample.

 699 characters

Photo of whiterabbit
2.51/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Dark, almost mahogany in color. Looks good. Poured a very faint foam, some definite lacing. Head quickly disappeared

Very little aroma. Surprised as I expected more.

Flavor to me raisin, coffee, some malt and hop. Light Spice. Definite alcohol aftertaste Very noticeable and somewhat bitter. A bit of a turn off

Not great on the tongue. Too sharp, not enough depth and bitter alcohol.

Did not do it for me. Went in with decent expectations, came away disappointed. Cut against Goose island and Great Lakes in same night, and a very distant third. Much better seasonal Ales out there. I will not be back, and rest in fridge is going to move slow.

 651 characters

Photo of natelocc787
2.55/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Clear golden body with an off white foamy cap. Subtle spice in the aroma with a mild hop character and graininess. The taste reminds me of Saint Arnold christmas ale, light body, every bit if booze evident, a corn syrup flavor and some vanilla, caramel spice to build up the finish which offers a piney profile. Mouthfeel is medium heavy, borderline syrupy and under carbonated. Decent but not too impressed.

 408 characters

Photo of es42289
2.56/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

too much hop biterness. Did not seem to be as spicy as other christmas ales. first sip seems harsh and makes you aprehensive about the next sip. not enough malt coming through to efficiently mask the high hop bitterness and higher alcohol.
Gets better as you get closer to the end of the 6pack expected :)

 317 characters

Photo of BeerAngel
2.56/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer pours pale brown that has no hazing and lies beneath a nice pillowy tan head. The aroma consists of an overwhelming amount of alcohol smell with not much else poking through. The taste consists of roasted malts with more of the alcohol that nearly make it taste medicinal. It also has a seltzer type taste characteristic to the finish of each swallow. This is a light bodied beer that just doesn't have a lot going for it. It's okay, but other than a warming beer, not my choice for the holidays. Cheers!

 514 characters

Photo of sevopie
2.57/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark brown with very little light shining through. Tan-light brown head that laces sporadically.

Smell - Slightly corny smell, as well as some strange sour notes and a couple indistinguishable spices.

Taste - A sweet corn flavor greets you with touches of spices (I think possibly cinnamon) and not a whole lot else. Warmer this is not.

Mouthfeel - Moderately thick/oily with a solid amount of carbonation.

Drinkability - Its not very harsh so easily sippable, but its not really a winter warmer in my book. After a few sips, the flavor starts to grate on your taste buds. I'll pass next year, and I'm starting to get this general impression of most of Breck's brews.

 671 characters

Photo of GreatStoutman
2.59/5  rDev -26%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Decent winter beer and I can appreciate them toning down the spices on this one, but I found it very bland. Thin body, light on smell and not much else going on. The alcohol is nicely hidden, but not a whole lot good to say about this.

 235 characters

Photo of AustinBeerLvr
2.63/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured a 12 ounce bottle into a shaker pint style glass.

A: Poured with little head for the style. Body looks a bit thin for a winter ale but does have a fairly nice deep mahagony color.

S: Nose is a hint of molasses but mostly minty spice notes dominate. Kind of weak.

T & M: Starts off with a bit of caramel sweetness and a touch of molasses flavor that seems weak and then transitions to mostly "Christmas" like spices (your typical mint, ginger, a touch of cinnamon). The malt character fades but is a bit noticeable even as as the wintery spice notes make their way through. The finish is very weak for the style, and besides the mouthfeel, is the real killer for this brew. Additionally, the aftertaste is nothing more than a watery odd metallic off-flavor that does not leave you wanting another sip. The mouthfeel is thin for the style, and the lack of body definitely does not seem like a "winter warmer".

D & Notes: Overall this is at best a half-way decent drinkable beer, but not worth bothering with if you are looking for a truly good "winter warmer". This brew is nothing more than a thin malt body with some holiday spices. The body is much too thin, the maltiness is weak, the finish is very weak, and this overall, in my opinion, a not so great winter brew.

 1,282 characters

Photo of BeerBelcher
2.64/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I thought this was OK, but far from the best holiday/winter/Christmas beer I’ve yet had this season. A coppery taste combined with a fruitiness/witbier blend did not really work for me.

Pours a dark, clear, sparkling red color with a centimeter and a half of head which quickly faded to a scummy coating, but left nice lacing. Aroma is nice hoppiness and some vaguely unpleasant natural earthiness. Flavor is hoppy at first, an odd bit of fruitiness (like fruitcake or candied fruit) in the middle of my mouth, and a bit of coppery maltiness at the finish. After a few more sips, the fruitiness in the middle seems more like a witbier...perhaps citrus and coriander. Mouthfeel’s a bit thin. I’m not a huge fan of this.

I wouldn’t really recommend this beer, although it does taste a bit like the holidays. I bought this bottle at 3 Cellars Liquor in Franklin, WI.

 869 characters

Photo of classixIII
2.67/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Cleaning out whats left of the Christmas swaps.
There are some of really good winter warmers out there, this isn't one of them.
Completely lacking in aroma and complexity of tastes I've come to expect in the finer examples of this style.
On the bright side, just made room for some spring and summer brews!

 307 characters

Photo of GarbageMan10
2.67/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Christmas Ale from Breckenridge Brewery
3.5 out of 5 based on 1,081 ratings.
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