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Wasatch Winterfest | Utah Brewers Cooperative

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Wasatch WinterfestWasatch Winterfest
Very Good
114 Ratings
Wasatch WinterfestWasatch Winterfest

Brewed by:
Utah Brewers Cooperative


Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.10%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 11-29-2008

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 114 |  Reviews: 64
Photo of crusian
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from local bottle shop... though I find it sad that we can get brewpub beer from Utah distributed in texas, but not texas brewpub beer... ridiculous.

Pours a nice dark rich brown with about a half finger of head. Lacing clings to the side very nicely as it dissipates.
The nose is wonderful... very nice citrus aroma, of simcoe maybe... not what i expected at all. Dark fruits and a hint of roasted malts.

Taste is what is expected from the nose, some dark fruits, nice hop profile with some roasted malt back end. Reminiscent of Black metal with all the dark fruits, very nice. Let this one warm a bit, as the cold suppresses the flavor profile a lot.

Pretty solid brew by Wasatch.

Edit: first review was right after I had a double IPA. Went back the next day and tried this first, and am now a bit underwhelmed by it. the nose is strong still, but the flavor profile seems to be lacking now. The hops from the first beer last night seemed to bring out the dark fruits more. Lowered my rating a bit on the taste.

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4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: fairly clear, dark amber, nice long lasting off white head

smell: caramel, malt with a pellet hop aroma

Taste: bitter hops with caramel malts, clean flavor overall

mouthfeel: soft, medium bodied

Drinkability: I could definitely enjoy a few of these, nice balance between the hops and malt

Born on: rubbed off, purchased at brewery

Served in burgandy glass at 50F

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Photo of ForWhatAlesYou
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass

A: Two finger bready head. Appears very deep auburn/brown but a little light reveals a scarlet red. Beautiful lace.

S: Fresh baked bread (yeasty). Alcohol very present. Aromatic hops.

T: Smooth caramel malty flavors mingle nicely with bitter hop elements. Deep roasted notes and a bit of green vegetative flavor. Very nice.

M: Viscous and nice around the entire tongue and palate.

D: As I look out onto 7-10" of fresh snow, I know I could be happy drinking this for a while (and the 7.1% ABV could certainly help me to warm up!)

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Look - reddish color when held up to the light, clear, and with about 2 fingers of very light khaki-colored foam that dissipates slowly. Decent carbonation.

Smell - definitely hoppy, but I can't identify the type of hop(s). Probably Cascade though. Also can't smell the caramel alluded to on the label.

Taste - very sweet flavor even as my lips dipped into the foam. The hops are already highly prevalent as it sits in my mouth and waits. I can't taste the caramel, but I can tell it's there, balancing out the hops. There's some bitterness, but it's mostly in the aftertaste and it's manageable. Texture is a little gritty-feeling in the aftertaste, but otherwise very well-balanced.

Drinkability - not terribly complex, but still an interesting and nice taste. Overall a good brew.

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Photo of dbossman
3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark amber with a steady but thin light tan head--foamy; lacing is good

S: Fairly muted but a nice carmelized malt quality--a bit of candied sugars; all on top of a citrus-like hop presence

T: Decent pine and citrus hop presence on top of a dry malt backbone; fairly simple and subdued but some spicy cloves shine through

F: Nice mouth feel and carbonation--beer evaporates off the back of the mouth

D: A decent little beer and drinkable

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Photo of yemenmocha
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Amazing! Pours deep amber/brown with tan head that is rich and creamy in texture. Nose leans more roasty and malty than I expected. Big malty flavor on the palate with some toasty brown sugar sweetness, hefty hop presence to balance it out, and it finishes with a healthy hop bite as well. Aftertaste leaves some baked desserts and light cocoa flavors. Alcohol percent is masked well, and nicely drinkable.

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Photo of arizcards
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a sixer at Total Wine two weeks ago for $8.49.

Beer poured a reddish-brown color with a nice tan head that is sustaining well.

Nose is caramel malts with hints of floral hops.

Taste is initially bready malts with a nice hopped up piney finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and pretty smooth.

Drinkability is good. This is a nice flavorful hoppy amber that is not quite big enough to be a double red. It reminds me of a lighter version of the Winter Yulesmith. Nice beer, would recommend this to fans of hoppy reds!

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Photo of kagent777
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle for the Co-Op beer store. Poured into a standard pint.

Appearance: Wonderful billowing rocky head formed on top of a crystal clear garnet beer. Leaves nice lacing down the glass as I drink it.

Smell: Starts off with pine like hops flavors. As it warms up, the smell shifts more toward nice malt flavors.

Taste: Caramel malt dominate the taste. There is some hop bitterness dancing around with the dark fruit. I think I taste dark cherries. This beer is on the sweet side. This is not one of those Christmas beers that is overloaded on pine. It is present but does not get in the way.

Mouthfeel: Very full bodied. The beer coats the mouth nicely. The carbonation is right in line.

Drinkability: This one is a stronger beer with strong flavors. I could drink a few in one sitting.

This is one of the beers I look forward to each fall from Wasatch. Well done!

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy brown with a 1 inch tan head that fades to a small cap. Good lacing that shows rings.

S - Smells very similar to SN Pale Ale (piney hops) and faint malts.

T - Tastes of bitter pine hops and leaves a malt aftertaste.

M - Good carbonation with a creamy feel in the mouth.

D - This was a pretty good beer that I got as part of a Winter sampler pack on clearance. I had never seen this brand before this and I haven't seen it around too much by itself. I don't think I would get this one again.

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Photo of gford217
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from, ironically, Wasatch.

Pours dark mahogany in the glass but shines through a deep, clear copper when held up to light. It's got a big 3-inch beige head that shows excellent retention and lacing.

The aroma is very subdued and mainly sweet caramel malts mixed with floral pine hops. There are hints of orange peel in the nose as well.

The taste has a quick hop kick up front before the big sweetness of the caramel malts take over. The finish is hoppy with some pine needles and herbs, slightly dry.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with strong carbonation and fairly prickly with the hops coming out surprisingly well.

I enjoyed this as a well-balanced winter brew with a surprising hop kick thrown in.

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to wasatch for sending this one my way.

Poured into my pint glass the beer dark red brown with about two fingers of light tan head. After a slow recession a thick coating of lace is left around the glass.

The aroma is much hoppier than I had anticipated. Along with citrus there are layers of malt and sweet sugars. Moderate spice and dark fruit as well.

The flavor is fairly malt driven. A touch of sweetness fades almost instantly. This followed by a modest hop bite that turns rather bitter and dry. Classic bark vs bite syndrome.

Medium body. Slightly creamy. Average to below average carbonation.

Overall an interesting beer for sure. I believe I might like to give this one a try fresh.

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Photo of CHL
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I am seriously impressed with this beer. I only got one bottle from the Utah State Liquor store in December, thinking it was a spiced holiday ale.

Instead, it's a nice strong beer, with heavy light malts and a not-insignificant citrus and pine hop kick. It's not a novelty beer though (like their less rounded "Hop Rising"). It's very tasty and enjoyable.

I think this is my favorite Wasatch "high point" beer. I hope they still have it in stock in April.

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Photo of kevinjosephlee
3.81/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a glass

A: Dark color with a ruby hue. Rich and persistent tan head with great lacing.

S: Nice piney hops in the nose with some balancing malt backbone.

T: Similar to the nose: nice and hoppy of the piney, floral persuasion. Some bitter from the hops but not overbearing.

M: Mild carbonation (but it has been open for a while and was not well-chilled when opened). Bitterness lingers pleasantly.

Notes: As the end of the glass approaches, the bite from this 7.1% ABV starts to lubricate my thinking (and slow my typing). A big beer that is very enjoyable but not sessionable because of its high gravity. A delicious beer.

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Photo of cvstrickland
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12-ounce bottle from the 2008 batch, courtesy of Wasatch. Thanks, John!

In my Sam Adams shaped pint glass, Wasatch Winterfest is sparkling-clear and ruby-tinted copper in color. A soft, creamy cap of pale beige foam settles to a finger's thickness and completely coats the inner walls of the vessel with a fine, sticky film of lacing.

The aroma is malty and laced with tree fruits; smashed red apples, fresh plums, toasted nuts and a vaguely spicy note predominate.

The taste is mild and toasty with a mellow backing of toffee. An unobtrusive note of alcohol masquerading as fermenting apple abounds without overpowering the palate or the dusty dryness that nicely balances the brew.

The drink is medium-fullish in body with exceptionally fine carbonation. A very easy drinker considering the 7.1% ABV.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A deep ruby pour into a pint glass from a 12 oz. bottle. Somewhat sparkly with regards to carbonation yet otherwise quite clear. An inch of dense light tan foam rests atop the pour and lingers nicely. Initially I fought for said foam but alas it was hard to contain in the end, and offered good lacing on the glass.

Some caramel malts on the nose acquiesce in short order to pine and citrus hop notes along with a bit or toasted grain.

Moderate hops and neutral malts on the tongue initially with a light caramel finish. A good carbonation carries through the palate. Malt notes intensify a bit as the head settles, which does take some time, and become darker in nature offering a bit of chocolate and brown sugar on the finish with a slightly drying hop nature. Said carbonation works well with the brew and offers a good feel and drink.

Was a bit at odds with this beer initially, thinking it a 'Winter Warmer', but as a 'Amer. Strong Ale' it fits the bill nicely, particularly given how hop forward it is.

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Photo of stephens101
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wasatch for the hookup. Pours a dark reddish-brown with a huge densely packed tan head that breaks up and recedes slowly. Smells of deep roasted nuts and spice with notes of malt flourishing in the middle. Closer inspection reveals some candy notes (red hots) and a very faint earthiness. The malt is huge on the palate, and the spice is far in the background. There's a bit of emptiness in the body, but it tastes pretty good nonetheless. A subtle alcohol heat is noticed, and a bit of lingering chalkiness exists. Another good brew from Utah, and I can't say I've had a bad one from that State yet.

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Photo of mikereaser
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wasatch for the chance to try this one!

A - pours a nut brown color with just a few bubbles on top

S - sweet caramel malts, molasses and very hoppy

T - breadiness along with some nice roasted malts with a good amount of bitterness

M/D - full bodied, lots of flavor, nice brew for a cold night.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, reddish-brown body with an half inch of off-white foam resting on top.

Smell: Toasted dark breads and caramels wrapped in notes of citrus, dehydrated herbs, and mild spice.

Taste: Toasted dark bread crusts and grains smoothed out with a modest caramel sweetness. Lightly nutty. Citrusy, herbaceous hops with a moderate amount of bitterness. Subtle hint from the alcohol. A touch of spiciness, though it doesn't seem to be due to an actual dose of Christmastime spices. Drying, lightly bitter, lightly spicy finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Smooth mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Pretty good! A reasonably bold winter brew without being too heavy, ridiculously spiced, or having a laborious ABV.

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Photo of chinabeergeek
4.16/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to wasatch for this namesake extra.

12oz bottle with no date. tasted in mid/late april 2009

dark, coppery amber. clear. big light brown head barely ever fades. great lacing all the way!

aroma: mild citrusy and piney hops, with almost fruity lemon zest tones. caramel maltiness and apple fruitiness then pops out from underneath, with an almost cinnamon sweetness.

taste: big and malty from the get go, but also quickly met by solid american hopping to balance. piney with touch of citrus. moderate bitterness. apple esters, hint of spice, trace phenols, esp in finish.

relatively substantial. smooth with some resins in finish. tingly, moderate carbonation gives both body and lift.

a pleasant surprise. i guess i shouldn't feel so bad for utah after all...

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Photo of beveritt
4.11/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go out to wasatch for this one.

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Label depicts a snow covered mountain range on a predominantly blue toned label. No freshness date but I imagine it is at least 4-5 months old.

Appearance: Pours with 3 fingers of medium tan head. This settles slowly to a still substantial 1/2 finger of foam, leaving behind nearly complete lacing coverage. acing continues as I drink, with a distinct ring at each pause between sips. The beer itself is a deep, perfectly clear mahogany. No sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Slightly sweet caramel malt with nutty undertones. Hop bitterness in the finish.

Taste: Bready malt upfront with a slight caramel sweetness. Mild hop bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Slightly lower than average carbonation level. Body is good.

Drinkability: A nice sipper, I imagine great for a cold Utah winter. So many good beers out there, such poor distribution channels.

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Photo of brentk56
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with an impressive and sticky head that leaves a curtain of lace

Smell: Piney tobacco notes waft along with caramel underpinnings

Taste: Caramel up front, with a developing piney herbal bitterness that arrives by mid-palate; after the swallow, the bitterness dials back a notch to highlight the fruity caramel malt; tobacco and tea elements in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A pretty intriguing winter warmer, with a lot of complexity

Thanks, Wasatch, for the opportunity

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Photo of Buebie
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you wasatch for this bottle, the last of our trade items.
Celebrating winter with spring. :)

Poured from a brown twist off 12oz bottle into a pub glass. An inch of white foamy head forms, leaving behind thick sticky lace all around. Brown in color, glowing ruby semi transparent red when held to light. Great appealing color on this.

Aroma of minerally water, chocolate grains, grassy pine laced hops, its malty and mildly sweet. The chocolate grains really set it off.

Mouthfeel is smooth and full bodied with a creamyness that was not expected. Limited carbonation really boosts the smooth creamyness of the feel on this.

Taste is sweet upfront, unfermented honey or lactose, not really sure. Sweet barley in a grape nuts flakes resemblence, a ;ittle overly sweet with too little of hops for this style.
Carbonation coming into the swallow, with grassy hops and a touch of faint pine. Plenty more roasty flavors of cereal grains, chocolate grains and nibs. Finishing roasty with very mild hop bittering.

Delicious brew, I do believe there is flaked barley in here, you can taste it and it seems to lend to lace and full bodied mouthfeel. I wouldnt classify it as an american strong though, its more on the lines of a porter/ brown. The chocolate, darker color and roasty grains dont seem to follow the barleywine. american strong lines too well. However, its a great beer and I really enjoyed it, but for the style it does not seem to follow along.

Added to my wants, this is pretty tasty and goes down well.

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Photo of orcasteve
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to wasatch for this one in a recent trade, shared with my girlfriend sara, we loved this one, poured a redish brown with a thick tan head that wont go away, this one smelled of molassiess and hops, the flavor is an exploshin in my mouth, the first part is a floraial hop then some lemon and molassiess and heavy sour malt, the finish tha hops take over and leave you wanting more. this is a top notch beer for sure

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Photo of indiapaleale
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another one courtesy of Wasatch via trade...

Wow, not what I was expecting. This is a serious beer!

Pours a very dark amber/red color with a thick inch of off white head. Pretty viscous stuff.

Smell is fairly hoppy still, it is May after all, with also a ton of malt sweetness backing that up. Pretty straightforward in the nose, just an intense amount of malt.

Taste is biscuity and brown bready. Lots of that dark sweet malt with some nice hints of hop spiciness.

Mouthfeel is thick, rich and very, very flavorful.

I could definitely have a few of these on a cold winter night. Great beer!

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.13/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

With Spring having sprung weeks ago, what better time for a strong winter ale? Wasatch (who else?) sent a 12 oz. bottle; I poured to a pint glass.

A: Rich, deep mahogany, tinged with ruby in the sunlight. A sudsy sandy-coloredcap, nearly a finger-high fades to a clinging froth; terrific lace in sheeting blankets. Fair carbonation, only a few random bubbles.

S: Strong aroma of spiced/candied fruit, citrus-y hops, scented wood, slightly chocolate syrup. Toasted dark bread, once again spiced (wheat) rounds out an appealing aroma.

T: A well-balanced hop/malt profile: herbal/piney greens (a little 'aged' as it IS April...) with a sweeter nutty/chocolate/toffee. Not as much of the fruit as detected in the aroma, finishes with a dry, vaguely smoky bitterness.

M: Smooth carbonation, medium-thick body. Mild alcohol warming.

D: Among the tastier, more drinkable strong/winter beers I recall. Rivals the likes of an annual NW favorite (Deschutes Jubelale). Would gladly have again.

Big thanks to John, a saint among BAs...

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Wasatch Winterfest from Utah Brewers Cooperative
Beer rating: 3.88 out of 5 with 114 ratings
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