Christmas Morning
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Christmas MorningChristmas Morning
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Stout - Sweet / Milk
Ranked #26
Ranked #786
4.34 | pDev: 7.14%
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States
Christmas MorningChristmas Morning
Notes: Hardywood Christmas Morning lends a cheerfully heightened decadence to our Gingerbread Stout through deep conditioning on locally roasted Brazilian and Sumatran coffee beans from Blackhand Coffee Co. Hints of sweet honey and oven baked gingerbread greet the comforting nuances of freshly brewed morning coffee in this imperial milk stout. Skip the leftover cookies and milk and awaken your senses with this delightful holiday tradition.
Reviews: 81 | Ratings: 431 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of mushroomcloud
mushroomcloud from Texas

4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16oz canned 11-17-20, opened 1-3-21.
2 finger tan head, dense and with a fine bead. Excellent retention.
Black stout with mahogany edges, nice lacing patterns.
Strong coffee and spicy ginger are the first impressions. Dark fruit and chocolate come on later.
Perfumey/spicy ginger, roasted malt, vanilla - the coffee comes on late but is strong and smooth over a honey sweetness.
All flavors are present as advertised.
Silky smooth body and mouthfeel, low + carbonation. Lengthy malty, semi-sweet, roasty finish.
A pleasure to drink, exceeded my expectations.

Jan 03, 2021
Photo of keithmurray
keithmurray from Connecticut

4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - datk brown body with tan head

Smell - chocolate, cinnamon and coffee bean

Taste - chocolate and cinnamon upfront amd coffee follows, also getting some honey sweetness

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, low to medium level of carbonation, sweetness upfront from the chocolate/cinnamon, coffee follows

Overall - pretty good stout here, a little on the sweeter side, but still a good beer

Price Point - $14.99/4 pack 16 oz cans

Dec 31, 2020
Photo of DanBrenda
DanBrenda from Washington

4.48/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ordered from Tavour and poured into a goblet.

Look: black, syrupy, light and small head with small lacing
Smell: coffee, spice (almost Chile pepper-like)... light earthy pepper-like spice... gingerbread (Bren’s note, not mine, I don’t get gingerbread because it is more spice that ginger... perhaps all spice like)
Taste: coffee up front, heavy spice in the middle (like I said, more like a pepper... but maybe it is ginger spices). We let it warm a bit and got some gingerbread notes on the very end palate
Feel: fully, syrupy, light carbonation if you swirl it around a bit.

Out of all the Hardywood Christmas beers, this one is by far the one that we thought didn’t best fit it’s description. There is day old coffee with spices and earthy notes (like a Chile pepper quality) set of notes in the nose and on the palate and you drink. Not my favorite in the bundle, but still a fun beer. The ABV is hidden well.

Dec 27, 2020
Photo of JohnG190
JohnG190 from New York

4.66/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with a fine tan head that eventually diminishes to a thick ring. On the nose strong coffee with hints of ginger and cinnamon. On the palate, the coffee is strong but not bitter. Nice allspice finish. Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Big fan of the festive can as well! Overall, a fantastic GBS variant.

Dec 26, 2020
Photo of UWDAWG
UWDAWG from Washington

4.38/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 16 ounce can into a tulip glass at 45 degrees per can.

Look- Black, frothy medium brown head, average head retention and lacing.

Smell- Ginger, coffee, cinnamon.

Taste- Coffee, vanilla, slightly ginger, cinnamon.

Feel- Full body, creamy, smooth, average carbonation.

Overall- Vibrant delicious favor, but bouquet was more subtle and ginger predominant.

Dec 26, 2020
Photo of MikeWard
MikeWard from Pennsylvania

4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

16oz can into a goblet. Canned 11/14/20, so about 6 weeks old.

Looks splendid in the glass. Black as black body with a fine tan head. This eventually diminishes to a thick ring, leaving rings of attractive lacing

Good strong coffee aroma. Some spice laying below, ginger & cinnamon.

On tasting, coffee is strong, well used, not bitter at all. The spices at times seem to suggest a little chile, but it's an allspice blend. Good and tasty beer.

Mouth full, finish strong coffee with a little spice.

Overall, very nice variant on base GBS.

Dec 25, 2020
Photo of Andrew_NYC
Andrew_NYC from New York

3.87/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 16 oz can that I found at City Swiggers on 86th St. in Manhattan. A nice surprise.

Dark in color with a fluffy light head and nice lacing.

Smell is deep malt and coffee with hints of spices.

The spices aren't as up front in the taste. Initially it tastes like a nice bold stout. Plenty of roasty malt flavor with some coffee bitterness. The spice mostly shows up in the aftertaste and isn't overwhelming. The feel is nice and full, with a bit of viscosity but not too syrupy.

I don't typically like spices in my beers but as far as the style goes, this one is pretty good and balanced.

Dec 25, 2020
Photo of tigg924
tigg924 from Massachusetts

4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours opaque, jet black in color with one third inch head. Taste is big coffee, honey, gingerbread and vanilla cookies. Heavy bodied, sweet with moderate carbonation. Gave this some time to rest and it really opened up past the initial coffee taste. Complex and unique milk stout. Glad I got a chance to try this. Nice holiday treat.

Dec 24, 2020
Photo of officerbill
officerbill from New York

4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: deep, dark black with a thin dark tan head that quickly dissolves into a ring with film islands
S: coffee, cocoa, gingerbread cookies
T: more of the same; cocoa, coffee, gingerbread cookies dipped in milk, sugar cookie, cinnamon, nutmeg, a dash of vanilla
F: medium bodied with mild carbonation, dry across the tongue with some ginger heat and a coffee with sugar aftertaste
O: very, very good. Christmas Breakfast is an excellent holiday brew that hits all of the right seasonal notes; gingerbread, coffee, cookies, everything you want in a Christmas beer. So much so that this beer would not work any other time of the year, but I'm glad it's here in December

Dec 19, 2020
Photo of RaulMondesi
RaulMondesi from California

3.92/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sure. Yeah. Here we go. Hmmm huh... This one isn’t exactly Santa after taking Viagra, but it’s still pretty solid nonetheless. This is a new beer to Raul, and for the most part, it pretty much reminds him of a lighter version of Stone’s Xocoveza - which is fine. But in reality, I was hoping for a lil more from these guys that have “hardy” in the name, ya feel me?


Dec 11, 2020
Photo of ichorNet
ichorNet from Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This is my second Hardywood Park Brewery beer after Christmas Pancakes (which I bought a four pack of and really enjoyed), and I'm very excited for it. So, it seems like this brewery's Gingerbread Stout is kinda the "base beer" for the Christmas stuff, as Christmas Pancakes is a maple version of GBS, and this is like a super-maximal GBS with coffee, vanilla, and cinnamon alongside the ginger and honey additions of the original. Maybe I'm totally wrong, but anyway... whatever, I'm excited for this and that's what matters.

Pours a deep brown liquid into my glass, almost like a cup of espresso honestly, topped off with a moderate head that weakly forms to about a quarter-finger, leaving behind slight lace. Builds into a tar-black color on the whole, but some suggestions of the brown-ness can be seen around the edges of the surface. Good legs and slight foamy surface coverage here and there. Not an amazing pour, honestly, but I am hopeful that things will get better as I analyze and sip it.

The nose is lightly-metallic, roasty, and coffee-dense with some hints of dark fruit (plum, sweet cherry), earthy spice, and vanillins. I'm... weirdly not super impressed by this. I get a hint of dusty cocoa and more cinnamon as it warms a bit, but the medicinal element and unfortunate metallic undercurrent are not inspiring a ton of confidence honestly. I guess it kind of reminds me of something like Stone Xocoveza or Clown Shoes Chocolate Sombrero but it doesn't feel as well-made as either of those have to me in the past. Hope it picks up on the palate!

Definitely a better flavor profile, that's for sure. Some strong nutmeg/cinnamon/cardamom overtones mingling well with the honey/vanilla to provide a good, semi-sweet and lingering earthy flavor that brings complexity. The coffee adds a hint of roast and even some acidity, but the roastiness does seem under-developed here overall. Cocoa is missing in action for the most part, maybe only showing up as a light sweetness as the beer transitions from the mid-palate (which is satisfyingly malty and complex, I will say) to the finish, which is of course quite sweet and sticky with a lingering palate burn that gives me a bit of fatigue. Not a bad sip, for sure, but I'm gonna consider this pretty damn overrated honestly, and that's disappointing. Maybe it's just how much they tried to fit in here (versus Christmas Pancakes which I liked a lot), but I'm not really big into it. Glad I only got a single, but it seems I'm in the minority on this one. Oh well, can't always follow the crowd.

Dec 10, 2020
Photo of stortore
stortore from Illinois

4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle into a tulip snifter. 2017 edition, had 1/11/19.

Pours a dark brown, mostly opaque, with a one and a half inch foamy head with great retention and lots of foamy lacing. Aromas of coffee, ginger, malt, chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa. Similar flavor- ginger, coffee, malt, cinnamon, vanilla, lactose, chocolate, cocoa. Smooth, a little creamy, a very good full body, well carbonated.

The coffee really adds a lot to the base beer, the ginger and cinnamon pop out to compliment the coffee. Very enjoyable.

Feb 15, 2020
Photo of EnderFett11
EnderFett11 from Virginia

4.4/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured moderately hard from a bottle into a snifter glass, resulting in a finger+ of frothy light brown head that faded to nothing after a while. Smell is nice, but not intense; a mix of ginger, spices, and sweetness. Taste is a nice combination of coffee, ginger, sweet milk stout, and Christmas spices. Medium to thick body with light carbonation. You can just tell its 9.2% ABV, more so as it warms. Looking forward to this next year, pretty sure its off the shelves in January.

Jan 14, 2020
Photo of Lingenbrau
Lingenbrau from Oregon

4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A beautiful and perfect beer to carry the old jolly man from eve into morning. Big thanks to Craig for this year's offering.

Pours a beautiful mirroring black with a thin tan foam that resides to a smooth ring just around the perimeter. It's a clean looking body overall, and leaves no trace between sips.

The aroma is simply an explosion of coffee and spice. Medium roasts fresh beans dusted in cinnamon. Charred and woody, this beer promises to be quite a flavorful experience.

Straight up Mexican hot chocolate without the heat. Cocoa, cinnamon sticks, and nutmeg with a heavy hand of cream and coffee.

The feel is rich and creamy. It's simply perfect for the style... but damn, if it had just a touch of heat!!! But not joke, it's full body is like drinking a glass of hot chocolate with a whole milk base.

No joke, this would (in my opinion) be the perfect milk stout if it had that classic cayenne pepper kick. It's world class for the style, no doubt. A real pleasure to drink.

Big thanks again Craig. Cheers.

Dec 25, 2019
Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the bottle, it pours a very dark brown, almost black, with a light brown head that lasts and leaves lacing as you enjoy the brew. Christmas spice tickle the nose. In the mouth, it is Christmas spice - think mincemeat, I think - and dark fruit coating the tongue.

Dec 07, 2019
Photo of oberon
oberon from North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours jet black with a half finger creamy deep beige head that settles into a somewhat frothy mass.Aromas of espresso roast coffee with a tinge of cinnamon,very highly roasted.Sweet caramel/vanilla and spicy cinnamon,and clove really stand out upfront on the palate then the deeply roasted coffee flavor takes over into the finish giving off a bit of char aftertaste.The roast/char flavors keep it from being overly sweet and it makes it very drinkable,very well made.Merry Christmas!

Jan 21, 2019
Photo of Beejay
Beejay from Virginia

3.78/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: black body with a dark tan head.

S: ginger, cinnamon, clove, and perhaps cardamom, followed by coffee and caramel.

T: spices dominate with coffee lingering and a caramel finish. A touch of heat from the spice.

M: thick with lower carbonation. A bit of a bite in the finish.

O: not bad, but i think the balance is off. I'm getting lots of spice and a touch of coffee, but little stout.

Jan 05, 2019
Photo of tastybeer
tastybeer from North Carolina

4.22/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Opaque dark brown with minimal head. Aroma is chocolate, coffee, molasses, leather, ginger... Flavor is smooth with chocolatey drizzles and cake. I like it! Merry Christmas!

Dec 25, 2018
Photo of RyskeeVA
RyskeeVA from Virginia

3.41/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Secretly disappointed by the 2018 batch. On top of the good notes you would expect (coffee, ginger, etc.), there’s a slight chemical smell to it. Beautiful head makes it a great beer to look at, but out of the whole 2018 GBS series, this is my least favorite. Not sure what went wrong here but it doesn’t live up to the expectations I’ve come to have for Hardywood. HOWEVER. If just about any other Virginia brewery put this beer out, I would be impressed. That’s just how high they’ve set the bar for themselves

Dec 25, 2018
Photo of maximum12
maximum12 from Minnesota

3.4/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Another locally bought 750ML bottle out of someone else’s overflowing cellar. My wife picked this out of the fridge. The barrel-aged version of this one was magical.

The pour looks like the belly of the Jade Tomb on Hyperion at midnight, which I hope I never see. Nose is oddly muted; touch of sweets & spices, mostly cinnamon, but nothing like the original. No roast.

Christmas Morning doesn’t taste like its DNA harks back to GBS. Lactose is dominate, very milky & cow-like, backed up by sweet malts. Touches of ginger & cinnamon. Roast finally emerges on the finish, & especially as the beer warms, provides a nice shot of espresso bitterness. I am fiercely indifferent if we finish the bottle or not.

Easily the weakest of the GBS line I’ve had to date. The roast is very nice, but everything else that I love about the beer is muted & smothered by the roasty pillow. Pretty good brew.

Sep 08, 2018
Photo of Bruno74200
Bruno74200 from France

4.42/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed poured from the tap at Lyon Bière Festival #3. As it warms up, the ale delivers all its character. Subtle ginger and cinnamon with a strong americano coffee on the side. Some sweetness, frosting sweetness. Nice

Apr 23, 2018
Photo of Sabtos
Sabtos from Ohio

3/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearing dull black with a thin beige film, dark gingerbread dominates this semi-dry brew exhibiting a big, airy froth, as cocoa and a hint of wood come out in the swallow. I really was not feeling this in the middle of a beer festival in Florida.

Mar 30, 2018
Photo of Stevedore
Stevedore from Oregon

4.01/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On draft. Served in a goblet. Pours a dark black body, one finger mocha head, short retention, no lacing. Smell is spice, ginger, which along with the coffee provides a lot of astringency even on the nose. Milk chocolate, a bit of cocoa as well. Flavour follows; spices and coffee make this a fairly bitter and astringent beer, which the base lactose and chocolate cannot overcome, at least not for me. Still, it's a fairly smooth and well-integrated brew that deserves to be sipped on for a bit. As it warms the spices come out some more. Mouthfeel is medium fuller bodied, creamy with nice body and appropriate carbonation. Good spicy finish.

Mar 18, 2018
Photo of Radcpa
Radcpa from Washington

4.24/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown appearance with a nice tan head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is a nice prominent cinnamon with coffee. Taste is also a nice cinnamon with coffee blend. A little thin.

Jan 25, 2018
Photo of wisrarebeer
wisrarebeer from Wisconsin

4.84/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Provided by Lou in one of our many trades. Thanks bro! This is a solid and extremely well-made beer. If you like gingerbread and coffee you will absolutely go for this balanced beer.

Jan 01, 2018
Christmas Morning from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 431 ratings