Rudolph's Revenge Winter Ale (6%) | The Great Yorkshire Brewery

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Rudolph's Revenge Winter Ale (6%)Rudolph's Revenge Winter Ale (6%)
64 Ratings
Rudolph's Revenge Winter Ale (6%)Rudolph's Revenge Winter Ale (6%)

Brewed by:
The Great Yorkshire Brewery
England, United Kingdom

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bottle Notes:
A dark bitter, using finest Cascade and a Styrian Goldings hops and English malt providing a unique hoppy beer with a fruity aftertaste.

Added by maxpower on 12-03-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 64 |  Reviews: 59
Photo of WetCoaster
4.3/5  rDev +41.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Appearance: Clear copper with a thick manila head that lasts pretty much forever. Leaves thick, sticky lace on the glasswall. Good start.

Smell: Interesting... Very spicy hops with a floral yeast aroma that is not entirely un-Belgian.

Taste: Whoa. What an odd take on a bitter. The Cascades definitely come into play here, and... something... really brings a citrus edge to the bittering hops. Lemonade, baby, right down the sour pucker at the finish. There's a bit of malt to temper the acidity, but you could have picked this off a tree otherwise.

Mouthfeel: Thin, crisp, bit sticky, but nothing out of the ordinary here. That's not a bad thing, though.

Drinkability: I loved this beer. Look, is there about a 99 percent chance something funky got in here? Yes. But is the happy accident wild ale we have here pretty damn tasty? Also yes. This would a great summer beer. I'm not sure what this is supposed to taste but, who knows, maybe this is better.

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Photo of jimdkc
2.99/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a medium brown. Not much head, and what is there doesn't last long.

Aroma is a little more promising. Fruity, with a litle hop spiciness

Taste has some hop spiciness, with muddled malt flavor, some fruitiness. Odd sour aftertaste. A bit of alcohol warmth on the swallow.

Average mouthfeel. Moderately carbonated. OK drinkabiliy.

I bought this along with 3 other English holiday/novelty import beers by Ridgeway Brewing (Bad Elf, Lump of Coal, and Santa's Butt). I'd easily recommend any of those over this!

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Photo of Byeast
2.93/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Clear , slightly reddish brown , half inch and well retained - creamy offwhite head , a bunch of lacing.

Smell: Kinda spicy , some dark malt showing , hint of apple , brownish malt , just a bit thin.

Taste: There is some hoppiness in a spicy way , some more dark malt flavor , faint apple , pepper , slight smoke ( meat?) , and just a hint of fruityness in the finish , also some mildly and unpleasant astringency.

Mouthfeel: slightly creamy , carbonation bites a bit.

Drinkability: This brew is alright , but it's really a bit weird to me and i probably won't be revisiting it. Much better holiday brews to be had.

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Photo of mmmbeer
3.53/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL, bottle-conditioned. It pours a chestnut/dark amber, with a fizzy head that reduces to a tan collar. The aroma consists of berries and vinous malts and the palate adds to this notes of toasted malts, melon/apple, light piney/citric and oily/English hops that impart a mild bitterness on top of a medium, smooth body. Not bad, but not good enough to justify the $5 price tag.

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Photo of DuqTroops
3/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance – this color is the best color beer should be. amber / reddish. the head afloats past the brim of the glass

Smell – lots of malts. very sweet. not a typical winter warming beer. more sugar than hops or malts.

Taste – not a good pale ale. doesn't taste like a normal ale, interesting sweetness to it.

Mouthfeel – no carbonation and doesn't sit well.

Drinkability – disappointed that I bought this beer.

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Photo of HopDerek
2.75/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a muddy brown with some sediment. Smells of nuts, a little chocolate, and some cherries. Tastes are very light, some caramel, dash of chocolate, a hint of cherries, and a very minute amount of bitter. A very light bodied watery beer. Not really what I was hoping for in an imported variety pack for the Christmas holiday, nothing really stands out about this beer other than it's not very memorable.

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Photo of budgood1
1.59/5  rDev -47.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

pours out of the half litre bottle a hazy amber colour with reddish tints. not much head to this one even with an aggressive pour. some chocolate covered tart cherries in the aroma...a bit of gingerbread and toffee, too. upon tasting, i was taken aback by the tart cranberry fruitiness that seems to dominate the taste profile. NOT what i expected. the malt flavours take a back seat to the pestering and puckering acidic fruit flavours. a few more sips to get some hop bitterness only leaves me frustrated. i think to swirl in the yeast to see if that can help...nope....only makes it worse. yuk. it's sour, and it sucks.

the body is seemingly weak and watery, and the mouthfeel is puckering and unpleasant. drinkability suffers from the fact that this x-mas ale, winter warmer, whatever the hell this is really sucks. it was hard to choke it all down and would be considered a drain pour for the less hardy.

it's been awhile since i lambasted a beer, but Rudolph's Revenge deserves a lump of coal for being a terrible concoction.

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Photo of TheLiterati
2.2/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured a deep amber with a tan, finger high head. Aroma is faint and non-descriptive, mostly malt with hints of hops, perhaps a bit of fruitiness – raisins, dates, etc.

Taste? Really hard to pin down. I was put off by the acidity, which was followed by a poor balance of malts and hops. The bottle says it’s a dark bitter and I’d have to agree – kind of – in that it is slightly dark, definitely bitter, but not pleasantly so. Mouthfeel was weak, making for a not-so-drinkable beer.

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Photo of taez555
2.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer poured a slightly clear/opaque dark amber/tan body with a huge pillowy thick white head.

Nose is an interesting mix of sour fruits, grain, biscuit, tart fruits and mild citrus hops.

Taste is light to medium bodied and with a strong initial lambic like sourness and tartness. Green apples, natural fruit juice and some mild hints of caramel. The hop mixture of Styrian Golding and Cascade is very interesting as it seems the S.G.’s dominate the hop flavor giving the lambic like qualities a nice balance and Belgian-like familiarity. Hop bitterness, although very up-front and if you face, is almost unnoticeable as the lambic qualities overshadow it. Ends with a long tooth rotting type sourness.

English mild mixed with 7/8 lambic. I’m not quit sure what they’re trying to do here, but calling this a dark winter ale seems like false advertising.

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Photo of DogFood11
1.57/5  rDev -48.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Poured into a stemmed pils glass it forms an off white filmy head that leaves admirable lace. Copper body with loads of slow rolling fine carbonation.

First drink took me back a bit as its like no other brew I've ever had. Thats not a compliment though as it is watered to a very thin feel and throw in some acidic backend mixed around a sourish body. This is incredibly astringent and very hard to consume. Hops are just bitter without any foundation to work off of. Malts are slightly spiced up but at the end of the day they fail to give this any balancer. Its very one sided and the "one" side is awfull. Metal seems to be a big factor the warmer it got. Sour, metallic, tart garbage.

Notes: Save your time and money and leave this on the shelves.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
2.58/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Presentation: 500ml brown wide bottomed green-brown colored glass bottle sealed with a simple brass crown cap which has the Cropton Brewery logo in a dark red. Main label is slightly different to the one shown on BA; mine has the red nosed reindeer above the words ‘Rudolph’s Revenge Winter Ale’. Recommended to be served at 12 °C (54 °F). Listed at 6.0% Alc/Vol and Bottle-Conditioned. No freshness date but I know this is (obviously) a Seasonal for the Crimbo period.

Described to the right of the front label as “A dark bitter, using finest Cascade and a Styrian Goldings hops and English malt providing a unique hoppy beer with a fruity aftertaste”. Some more bullshit marketing blurb sits to the left hand side and is not worth repeating, I pretty much ignored that crap.

Appearance: Run of the mill amber brown body with a solid level of conditioning that is finely dissolved, but whilst a quick swirl evokes a nice ¼” thick off-white cap, sadly the head disappears all too quickly and fades to leave nothing but a ringed halo along the edges. This also breaks up eventually. Looks a little tired to say the least.

Nose: Caramel and earthy malts. Nice enough but the nose has some feint hints of sourness, vinegar-like almost; this was unfortunately a sign of things to come.

Taste: Tart start, in fact there is a tartness to this brew throughout, a crisp sharp vinaigrette tingle. Minimal hop influence and a mild malt angle with some earthy hues and a smidgeon of caramel. Finishes with a mélange of sour and acidic malts that tend to grab and bite a little. I know this to be a fresh sample, despite the lack of any dating on the bottle so I am perplexed by this tart trait which is off-putting.

Mouthfeel: Medium at best with a watery nature. But the vinegar pinch from the continued tart off-flavor is so annoying that it is hard to concentrate too much. Can feel thin though when first served, thickened a little as it closed in on room temperature but it was never more than below average.

Drinkability: Yeah I finished the half litre bottle, I hate to pour money down the drain, but it wasn’t gonna beat me. After half of the bottle I had grown bored of this brew but wanted to see if would provide a surprise some back as it warmed up a little, not so, it just got worse.

Overall: I am so glad that Christmas comes but once a year, this is the first time that I decided to pick up this English bottled offering and it is not worth the money to be brutally honest. Very average and that’s being kind, the persistent tart vinegar off-flavor reminds me of a Cask Ale gone bad, but not quite. Seems like Rudolph’s Revenge is that we have to drink this crap, that Red Nosed Reindeer is a f**kin specialty Burger next time I see him. One to avoid from Crapton.

Bah Humbug!!

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.85/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A flavorful and enjoyable brew, however not one that is very surprising. Begins with a rich malt aroma that lands somewhere between a Brown Ale and and Irish Red. Lots of malt, bread, and crusty aromas and flavors with some yeast and fruits thrown in. Fruits fall in the plumb, fig, dates, and grape range with some nutty, maple characters added. All are evident equally in the nose and flavor. Feels full and modestly rich to the palate. Finish reinforces the flavors, along with the addition of spice from piney hops, and Christmas spices. A very nice beer, but I'm looking for a standout or quality character that differentiates this from other very good English brews. For me, they are not realy there.

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Photo of mschenk
2.63/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The first thing I noticed was a clump of sediment on the bottom of the bottle. The beer poured well with a nice head and a bark brown color. Just right for a winter ale. The head lasted okay and left a lace on gthe glass.

The spiceness of the smell made me that this would be an excellent ber, however it turns out to be quite sour, and not in the good Guiness way. Really very little malty taste, just kind of sour.

One of the few beers I've been dissapointed with I'm sorry to say. However even some ski days don't make the grade and some SCUBA dives are less than pleasurable. Doesn't mean you should give up.

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Photo of Vancer
2.95/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A little bit bummed with this British brew – expected a winter warmer with more pizzazz.

Started off on the right foot, a clear cola brown brew with a small ivory head. A good swirling at mid-bottle worked up some nice yeaties for additional flavor.

The sharp winter spice smell got me worked up, but the taste let me down – a funky and musty sour ale concoction. The swirl did swish up some caramel and chocolate goodies lying on the bottom.

It was drinkable, but for the import price – I’m looking at more local brews for winter satisfaction (hmm, I read that somewhere on the BA site). The wimpy 6% is not going revenge anyone.

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Photo of bennetj17
3.62/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received from Vancer in BIF46. 500ml bottle. The color is brown, lightly murky, with a thin wispy crust of foam fading to a ring. Nutty malt with light toasted character, plus a nice bitterness comes through in the nose. The taste is also moderately bitter, with a semi-roasty character in the malt. It also has a hint of fruit tang in the background that becomes more pronounced over time. The fruit is perhaps cherry, and definitely has some tartness. The carbonation is low, but right for an English Bitter, which this is really more like than a Winter Warmer. The mouthfeel is somewhat light/watery but not bad. Not sure I had high expectations for this brew but it turned out alright...

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Photo of soultrain
4.1/5  rDev +34.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Schlitz chalice.

A-Dark amber brown silty appearance, 2" creamy unbleached titanium white head, amply carbonation obvious and streaming. Some chunkage. Some lacing. Muddy water comes to mind, but it's appealing in a Mississippi Huck Finn sorta way, even though this beer is English....
S-Cascade hops are in the house, so I'm psyched.
T-Chalky sour bitterness, but in a real good way, Cascade hops, mild fruit, just like it says on the bottle. Truth in advertising. This bottle conditioned ale has been hiding in the back of the DBF since the holidays, and if I knew it was gonna be this good, i'd have killed it off long ago. Really crisp and astringent. Perfect after 3 hours of mixing concrete, really washes the dust outta your mouth, and placates an overbeating heart. Would I get this again? sure, why's a bitter refresher! (Usually I expect winter warmers to have some spice content; this one doesn't, maybe that's why I like it so much.) I could see how some wouldn't appreciate this chalky/ bitter brew, but I'm diggin' it immensely.
M-Mouthfeel is light/medium, and pretty intwined with the chalky bitterness of the taste....this beer is well made.
D-If I had another one, I'd lash it down with the quickness...

CRUX: NICE HOPPY BITTER BREW. Wasn't expecting such a good brew out of a bottle with such silly graphic cartoon design on it. Good winter ale year round.

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Photo of tgbljb
4/5  rDev +31.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a crystal clear medium copper color with abundant creamy tannish head. Fell to a thick ring leaving modest lacing. Smell is at once fruity with a stern maltiness. Taste is initially tartly fruity and becomes more pleasnt as the beer slowly watms. Fuinishes more sweet than tart with a nice creamy mouthfeel. An easy drinking beer that worked as well on a coolish spring night as it would have on a cold winters night. An appropiate beer for my 700th review.

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Photo of Citadel82
3.05/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Saw this in the "dollar" section of the New World Beer store in NYC. Couldn't resist. While it wasn't bad it was not something I readily will drink again. Pour was a murky milk chocolate brown capped by an uncontrollable thick, sticky, off-white head. I was only able to pour part of the brew due to the massive head and had to set aside the bottle to wait for the head to recede. The head proved to be long lasting. At this point, to my chagrin, I witnessed something I had not seen since my previous flirtation with home-brewing...the beer in the bottle bubbled over and made quitre the mess of my desk...Yikes. After finishing my clean-up here are my comments:

Head was thick and creamy with a scant few brown flecks in it. Aroma was toasted sweet malt with an odd buttery aroma that instantly reminded me of buttered toast. Little if any hop presence at all. Taste was malty sweet with some fruity yeast essence and little else. In other words it was genrally bland. I ended up pouring about a third of this beer down the drain as I lost interest in it after a while. Perhaps it was a bad bottle? Perhap's not. I don't recommend this one at all. Perhaps fresh it may be okay but the brewer should consider using a brown bottle if he wants this beer to have any sort of shelf life.

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Photo of BeerIsland
2.84/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

My friend Bo laid a bottle of this on my about a month ago, he said it was last year's buzz beer but the 2005 didn't reprise (I’m not too proud to take a cast off now and then). He said it was more like old ale this year. Well, that's not a style I'm very familiar with so I thought I'd give it a shot although it took a while to get my courage up. It looks OK in the glass, mostly orange in color; it started cloudy and stayed that way. The head was not impressive and the bubbles quit early. I liked the aroma; abundant malt and yeasty notes even a few inches from the glass. The first taste was pretty sour, cherry flavors mostly but seems to be going away as I have some more. The carbonation is decent and adds to the overall presentation. It’s an interesting item but not one of my favorites.

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Photo of maxpower
3.24/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz bottle pours a cloudy amber color with a small creamy off white head that leaves little lacing in my glass. Aroma of cherries and wood, fruity cherry, lemon and caramel flavors. Medium bodied with a lightly carbonated mouthfeel, finishes dry and sour.

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Photo of pentathlete
3.65/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark cloudy red with a voluminous head that returns to a solid table about 1/8 inch thick. Smell is suitably malty, cake batter sweetness. The taste starts with a clean malt sweetness blending smoothly with a mild bitterness. There is a touch of fruit in the finish, though I can't quite place the flavor, maybe a berry. I'm enjoying this brew, but as it warms some flaws begin to emerge. The mouthfeel becomes more carbonic, the finish is more acidic. So this one is aptly named: Revenge (Rudolph's, that is) is a dish best served cold.

$3.50 at Clough BP in Cincinnati.

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Photo of putnam
2.7/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Reddish sherry colored. Creamy short topping. Aromas of Caramelized woods and sweet brown spices. Fiercely dry, bitter flavors don't quite obscure a creamy-textured core of lemon, clove, red apple and malt syrup flavor. Sour and woody, astingent finish. Imagine mulled wine steeped in a thousand tea bags. These are appealing flavors individually but they make a beer that I want to avoid.

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Photo of ADR
2.81/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Medium stained-oak brown appearance, pours clearish to begin with, just a touch hazy at the bottom. Pillowy head rises to 1/2 an inch. Decent laces smear most of the glass. Aroma of sugary peaches, slightly unripe with a lot of brightness. Carbonation is slightly high, the mouthfeel and overall texture are lighter than I expected. Intitially hoppy and lemony taste without a very solid malt backdrop, and not helped by the minimal body. A little iced tea-like with too much of a sour finish across the back. No sense of spices and few warming qualities. Given the ABV, I would just call this an astringent Bitter. For me, I wouldn't recommend this one.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.67/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the glass slightly hazy deep amber crown with a perfectly white head that was very low, compact and fell quickly but lasted to lace the glass.

The aroma was slightly fruity with some caramel and earthy hop presence.

The flavor was that of a bitter with Fuggle hops (well British at any rate) and a fruity British yeast character. Also present in the flavor was some malty caramel character.

The finish was just almost dry with a crisp mineral finish and lasting earthy bittering. The body was medium. Extremely easy to drink, great session beer.

16.9 ounce bottle, $4.99. This is listed as a Winter Warmer, it is simply another Bitter and not a bad one at all.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
2.88/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Hazy, deep crimson hue, solid slab of creamy froth...nice enough looking brew, if not for the floaties at the bottom, tiny green specks, that sit harmlessly at the bottom, but still don't sit me at ease.
Appley aroma at the onset, ripe sourness, full fruit, dark ones, cherries and grapes, some citrus, a bit heady and malty, as well.
Taste begins tart, green apples again, not what I expect, but often find in some English ales. Rounded, more palatable fruitiness leads the way, malt is primary here, hops are silent. there is a lushness in the mouthfeel, and a bit of a spicy kick, too.
Medium-bodied, with a mellow, fruity finish.
Flavor kind of deadens some near the end, taste picks up an added astringency I'm not crazy about. Sourness accellerates, also, and I remember how un-crazy I am about that apple flavor in a beer. At least in this beer. Maybe especially in this one?
Halfway through the bottle, the sour is too much for me, and I find no enjoyment in the drinking. It becomes a gulp-and-wince affair and that puts in the negative column, unfortunately. Had such hopes for it!
Rudolph, what did I ever do to you to deserve this Revenge?

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Rudolph's Revenge Winter Ale (6%) from The Great Yorkshire Brewery
Beer rating: 3.04 out of 5 with 64 ratings