Christmas Ale | Breckenridge Brewery

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Christmas AleChristmas Ale
1,122 Ratings
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: 1,122 |  Reviews: 427
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2.5/5  rDev -29%

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3/5  rDev -14.8%

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3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

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3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of WuAnquo1
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of kojevergas
2.88/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served on-draught into a conical pint glass at Breckenridge barbecue in high altitude Denver, Colorado. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a one finger head of fair cream, good thickness, and good retention. Colour is an amber-copper.

Sm: Nothing. Could be because me nose is broken. All apologies, lads.

T: Amber hops, light toasted malt, light caramel, and cream. Very timid; the flavours hardly come through at all. Balanced but quite muted.

Mf: Smooth and wet. A touch sharp. Complementary of the flavours of the body. A bit too thick.

Dr: Drinkable, but unremarkable and a bit boring due to its muted nature.

12/19/16: brief 2nd impressions.

Malty and spicy, hitting wintry notes of artificial chestnut and faux-unrefined sugar. Amber malts, caramel, cream.

Balance is off. Depth of flavour is poor. Pretty mediocre fare across the board.


 894 characters

Photo of McNealc31
3.71/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rather than focusing on spices, Breckenridge Christmas Ale instead reminds you of of warm, sweet carbs.

Loads of sweet caramel and toffee followed by freshly baked dark bread fill the nose. The lacing left behind is like a dusting of snow on a mahogany cabin. The citrusy hops do eventually kick in with a bigger jolt than expected. More chocolate and a little bit of smoke as it warms.

I like this take on the style. There is a hint of cinnamon, but this is decidedly a malt-forward winter warmer. A quite tasty one

 518 characters

Photo of imbuckeye
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of BMart
3/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of aboji
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of Immortale25
3.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Dogfish Head tapered pint. No freshness date.

A- Pours a reddish brown color with a 1/2 inch white head that has very lengthy retention. Some fluffy lacing and spread out bubbles as it slowly settles to an 1/8 inch of head.

S- Has a clean, malty nose with some toffee, brown sugar and a faint bit of nutmeg.

T- Flash of booze upfront that hesitantly mellows out and leads to roasted nutmeg and a touch of cinnamon. Can't get over the sharp astringency that's present after every sip. Even with a 7.4% ABV, this beer shouldn't taste that strong. After multiple sips, a mild sweetness comes through but isn't enough for the flavor profile to recover.

M- Ultimately, the mouthfeel is the biggest bummer of this beer. Just way too bright and prickly. I attest that to the medium-high carbonation, as winter warmers are usually more subdued in that department. It wouldn't be that big of a deal if the rest of the beer's characteristics weren't so flawed.

O- It's always disappointing when someone recommends a beer and you spend money on it but end up disliking it. C'est la vie.

 1,094 characters

Photo of Coplains
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.6/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a balloon glass.

Breckenridge Christmas Ale pours a deep murky mahogany color with a cream colored head. A patch of bubbles and thin film are what remain after the head recedes. A nice sheet of light sticky lacing clings to the glass. The aroma is Christmas in a glass to me- a combination of pine, cedar, and orange peel immediately awaken my nose. Also, faint roasted malts linger in the background. The taste profile also starts out with an earthy, woody cinnamon-cedar note. Bright orange peel follows, mixed with some malt sweetness. The finish is piny hops, completing a well-rounded excursion into my favored Christmas Ale year after year. There is a notable tartness in the aftertaste. On a side note, I dig the artwork on the bottle, it has a weird Dickensonian feel about it to me.

 804 characters

Photo of atone315
4.5/5  rDev +27.8%

Photo of Jamstone714
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of DAllspaw
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on tap
deep auburn color, more like a brown ales. This is definitely a malt forward beer, with some baking spices, especially cinnamon, just a shade heavy on the cinnamon frankly, but nicely spiced. Also get a bit of piney hops.

A bit thinner than other winter/Christmas ales, but a good easy drinking beer.

 308 characters

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3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

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3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of Beer4Baltimore
4/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of StLThrash
3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Very clear, deep mahogany / brown with a hint of red. Poured with a nice beige 1 1/2 finger head and left slight lacing. Very nice-looking and tempting brew.

S - The chocolate and caramel malts shine through, with hints of toasted bread and spices, which you would expect in a winter warmer. The spice is not overwhelming though.

T & M - Similar to the smell, a lot of up front caramel and chocolate hints, and finishes with the spice. A little thin mouthfeel, balanced well with carbonation. For over 7%, very drinkable.

Overall - A nice tasting winter seasonal. Not too overly spiced, and balanced well with the malt character. Give it a try.

 694 characters

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4/5  rDev +13.6%

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3/5  rDev -14.8%

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3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

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4.5/5  rDev +27.8%

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4/5  rDev +13.6%

Christmas Ale from Breckenridge Brewery
Beer rating: 3.52 out of 5 with 1,122 ratings