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Christmas Ale 2010 | Abita Brewing Co.

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Christmas Ale 2010Christmas Ale 2010

Brewed by:
Abita Brewing Co.
Louisiana, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Christmas Ale (November - December) rounds out our calendar. Generally, this beer is a dark ale, however, the recipe changes each year, offering a unique product crafted with special care. Enjoy your holidays with Abita Christmas Ale.

Added by tone77 on 11-06-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 46 | Ratings: 69
Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.32/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Abita Christmas Ale (2010 edition) has a thick, frothy, off-white head and a very clear amber appearance, with moderate carbonation; spaced lacing is present down the glass. The aroma is of roasted malts and dark coffee. Taste is of dark roasted barley, dark roast coffee, and a hop under-spice; all of these come together in a delicious triad. Mouth-feel is medium, and Abita Christmas Ale (2010) has a nice, settled finish. Overall, I quite enjoyed this pleasant, mild ale.


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Photo of Stevorama
4.03/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First product I've sampled from Abita Brewing, so no preconceived notions.

Rich copper color with only an average head.

Pleasing aroma; very smoky, somewhat coffee-like. Unique flavor; none of the sweet spices I've encountered with other seasonal brews. Crisp taste; definitely toasty, peppery (think grounded black pepper) with a very slight hint of nut. Surprisingly smooth and drinkable with a clean finish. Definitely not an all-nighter beer; perhaps 1 or 2 before moving in another direction.

Overall pleased; I would buy it again.

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Photo of jmerloni
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Brown with a little reddish tint. Translucent. Head is moderate and leaves a little bit of nice lacing.

S - Bready, chocolate notes, some malt.

T - Bready chocolate notes. Not much malt here. Some spices. Maybe cinnamon or nutmeg. Pleasant and pretty subtle and light.

M - Nice and light but not cheaply so. Really pleasant to sip. Very dry. Carbonation is perfect here.

D - Very good drinkability on this one. I could throw these back during an after-Christmas dinner poker game or something like that. Really pleasant tasting, inoffensive, light, and nice. For whatever is lacking in this beer to a beer critic, Abita made it to be the way it is, and I think it's an overall success.

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Photo of Pegasus
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear, deep amber brown with a dense, persistent cream-colored cloud top head. Abundant Belgian lace adorns the glass walls. Numerous streams of fat bubbles drif lazily to the surface.

Aroma: Lots of toasted malts, caramel, a little cocoa as well, modest herbal hops, and slight spices.

Taste: Opens with nut and toffee notes. A pronounced undercurrent of cold coffee is present throughout the taste. Caramel is present as well, with hints of dark fruit and brown sugar. Toward the close of the taste, pine tar hops appear and linger well past the close. The finish is a bit dry.

Mouth feel: Smooth, soft, and pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: A very nice example of the style, with a little Christmas spicing as well.

Packaged in a short twelve-ounce brown glass bottle with a pry-off crown, served in a standard Pilsener glass.

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Photo of curasowa
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark copper color with 1 finger of head that fades slowly with thick lacing

Aroma: Sweet, toasted grain with notes of toffee, burnt toast and piney hops

Taste: Toasted, nutty malt upfront followed by some prickly carbonation leading to a green hop bitterness that finishes pretty fast and clean, with just a touch of nuttiness returning.

The Rest: Body is creamy and just on the thin side of medium and drinkability is very good. Forget that this is a Christmas ale, this is one tasty brown!

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Photo of KaitouShiroi
3.93/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Look: Pours a nice, ruby-brown color. Decent head that dissipates quickly, leaving nice lacing as it goes down.

Smell: Slight nuttiness, with an underlying spice; possibly cloves.

Taste: Nutty, with just enough hoppiness to balance the sweetness of the malt.

Feel: Light, not very thick at all, and crisp on the finish; leaves a slight roasty aftertaste, but nothing too strong.

Drinkability: Like most Abita beers, I can easily drink 2-3 in a session. Clean finish along with the good balance leads to a beer that lends itself well to session drinking around the fireplace (if you have one in South Louisiana).

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Photo of nickthegun12
3.92/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a good brown color....not much head...and decent lacing...

smells a hoppy..smells really hoppy...citrus hoppy...

taste...a little bit of a tea flavor...slightly fruity...a little bitter...winter brewing spices...nutmeg and cinnamon....and well defined hops

watery feel in the mouth....not too carbonated...

pretty good drinkability....

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Photo of Shrews629
3.9/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance - Dark red/amber/copper color with a nice thick off white head. Hung around for a few minutes to leave a small film across the top. The beer is mostly clear with burnt orange highlights at the bottom. Some lacing left on the glass.

Smell - Some floral and citrus hops strike me first in the nose. Picking up some peach and what smells like cinnamon and gingerbread. A bit of orange in there also. The malt is of a darker tone.

Taste - Some of the citrus hops at first with the flavor, followed by the cinnamon. The gingerbread melds nicely with another sort of spice that I can't identify right off. Seemingly well balanced and enjoyable.

Mouthfeel - Medium body mouthfeel. A tad bit watery. Was smooth and relatively crisp. Left a little to be desired on the palate.

Drinkability - This is an easily drinkable beer. Worth a try if you get the chance. I did like the taste very well and it seemed to hit the spot, as far as for Christmas spirit. This would be nice with sugar cookies I think. Glad I got to sample it.

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Photo of EgadBananas
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark copper in color, nice finger of head that leaves nice little lacing.

Aroma is nice, with a hint of sweet malts, with a subtle, floral hop aroma.

Taste is good, with a starting slightly malt sweet, moving to nice subtle woodsy hops, and finishing with a hint of nuttiness.

Feel is crisp, smooth, and upper light in body.

Overall, solid on the drink.

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.82/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look - fairly clear but a subtle brown/ruby in color. About two fingers of foam that dissipates somewhat quickly. Good carbonation.

Smell - A bit malty in the aroma, with a spiced quality, and maybe a bit toasty. Might be a fruitiness involved too, but not a typical variety.

Taste - Tastes almost like a rice beer or some other gluten free attempt. Definitely more on the malty side, but not strongly so. The unusual quality in the smell is also present in the taste. There's a bubbly or fizzy feeling at the back middle of the palate. Texture is more on the creamy side.

Drinkability - Very interesting brew in terms of taste. I'd be intrigued to find out the basic elements of their recipe this year. Definitely complex enough in the taste to be engaging, and not a bad taste in and of itself.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.8/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a moderate brown color with a thin light tan head and a tad bit of lacing. The nose is some light toast and roast plus some caramel and mild spice. The taste brings some semi-sweet malt and hints of spice plus a dash of caramel. The feel is a bit thin yet slightly creamy. Drinks fairly well ands is better that I expected from a brewery I don't generally care for all that much.

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Photo of Vengeance526
3.8/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear brown amber color with a good sized foamy off-white head that hangs around for a while and leaves a medium amount of lacing.

Light aroma of caramel malt and a touch of spicy hops with hints of citrus.

Taste starts with notes of toasted bread and caramel followed by floral hops and light citrus notes in the background.

Medium body and medium carbonation with a dry finish. Good drinkability overall. As usual, nothing about it really says Christmas, and the brown ale classification seems to be a mistake as well. Putting that aside, this is a solid offering, very good for the price.

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Photo of russpowell
3.77/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review based on notes, drank this early February

Pours brown with a pinky of cream colored head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Fruittyness, woody hops & toffee

T: Toffee, brown sugar & figgyness up front. Some nutty notes as this warms, along with caramel & piney hops. Finishes dry with brown sugar & toffee

MF: Light/medium bodied, medium carbonation & nice balance

Drinks easy, a cut above Abita's usual offerings

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Photo of mountdew1
3.76/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Color was a orange brown, with a thick 2-3 finger frothy off white head. Head clung to the sides well, only lasted a few minutes before thinning out considerably. Aroma was minimal, was mostly sweet brown bread. Flavor was malty and earthy, with a tad of burnt brown sugar. Felt ok in the mouth, coated nicely, and was well carbonated. Almost slightly chewy. A very pleasant to drink beer, just a bit strange to be a christmas selection.

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Photo of Tone
3.73/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, amber color. 1/2 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells slight roasted malt, sweet malt, citrus hops, hint of earthy malt, and a hint of chocolate. Fits the style of an American Brown Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of slight earthy malt, hops, slight sweet malt, and a hint of chocolate. Overall, great appearance, good aroma, good feel, but weak body.

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Photo of KarlHungus
3.73/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a hazy amber-brown color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into nice lacing. The aroma is of caramel. It is simple aroma, but strong enough to be of mild interest. The taste is similar to the aroma, but the caramel does have some depth to it. Still it is a rather simple taste. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation, and a velvety texture. Overall, this is a nice beer that I could drink again. There are better brown ales out there, but I would never have a problem drinking this one.

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Photo of Fnord
3.73/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance - Clear light brown with a lumpy and creamy off-white head.

Smell - Caramel, walnut, pine, alcohol, and maple.

Taste - Fairly subtle and malty. Surprisingly dry for a winter warmer, and with little to no spice to boot. Quite a bit of roasted malts, especially in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body with medium carbonation.

Notes - The roastiness is a pleasant surprise - I like a dry and roasty ale once in a while. I would call this more of a brown ale than a winter warmer, but it's interesting, so I don't mind. In my opinion, this is one of the better Abita beers so I'm looking forward to seeing what they brew up next year.

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Photo of chinchill
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.

Pours a near-clear red-brown color with a large head of light beige foam. Head dies down to a lasting thin coat and leaves a little lacing.

A - Medium and light malt with earthy hops, toffee and hints of dark fruit with some light 'winter' spicing.

T: Vanilla, toffee, light spicy hops and figs, over a solid malt base. Somewhat earthy and nutty. "Christmas" flavor notes are under control here, excepting perhaps the vanilla, but thankfully there is no overblown nutmeg or cinnamon.

MF: Light/medium body; good medium carbonation

O - An above-average, easy drinking offering from Abita. Good economical winter seasonal.

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Photo of Frosty80
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color: pours light golden-brown. sits clear reddish-brown with a good off-white head

Smell: upon sniffing after first straight poor it had one hell of a spicy hop kick to it. aftera minute though it became a little more tame. nice caramel malt to support

Taste: moderately high spicy/peppery hop character. medium bitterness. caramel malt sweetness is scarce. seems to be highly attenuated giving it a very dry presence, especially in the finish which is spicy

Mouthfeel: medium body with medium carbonation

Notes: nothing spectacular, but i do love the spiciness/pepperiness of this hoppy light brown ale

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Photo of Rayek
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Perfect Pint glass.

A: Chestnut brown with nice clarity and mild carbonation. A dense cream cap has great retention and leaves nice sheets of lace.

S: Toffee, heavily toasted bread, plus a bit of lemon and black tea.

T: Fairly mild. Heavily toasted grains dominate. Bitterness is mild and has a black tea quality. A light astringency comes on late. Finishes with lingering toasted grain flavors.

M: The medium-light body is dry and slightly chalky. The carbonation feels about right.

D: This is a nice little beer overall. It doesn't scream Christmas beer to me, but taken on its own merits I found it pretty nice.

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Photo of Brad007
3.67/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an amber color with a one-finger head into my glass. The bottle did not specify which year and I hope this is the 2010.

Aroma is full of grassy hops followed by only a hint of sweet malt. Odd for a brown ale.

Lots of grassy hops upfront with only a slight hint of sweet malt. Hmm.

Time to gripe. This beer is overly carbonated. It must have been miscategorized as well. It's a red ale.

Not bad but I've had better as far as seasonals go.

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Photo of WesWes
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a nice brown color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, roasted malt scent along with a mild caramel malt sweetness. There is a subtle nuttiness as well. The taste is decent. It has a thin roasted and caramel malt flavor. It goes down with ease and finishes bone dry. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an above average beer, but just an average brown.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.58/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this one up the other day as part of a mixed six pack, and was very pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. Poured a deep amber red with a small white head. Aromas of sweet malt and earthy hops. On the palate, more of the same, medium bodied and quite drinkable. A pleasant surprise.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle pours a clearish, red-brown color with a large cap of light beige foam. Nice retention and lacing.

Dark plum fruit with some cinnamon and sugar dusting. Tropical hop aromas meld well with the soft caramel malt.

Pretty sure there is a little bit of spicing going on here, but it is very mild. Biscuity malt with a fruitcake-dough yeast presence. Fairly sweet, but some toast and hop bitterness clean things up pretty well. I guess brown ale is as good of classification as any, but it is not your typical brown ale. The Abita christmas beers always have the same mild vibe to them even though they claim to use a different recipe every year. Easy drinking six-pack that can vanish pretty quickly. I got this on sale for 3.99 and am very happy with it for that price.

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Photo of tchenery
3.52/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

No head on this beer. It has a nice dark russet/reddish color though.

Smells nutty, almost like the Pecan Harvest did, but with more roasted and toasted malt flavors.

It has an odd flat-cola like taste, kind of a subdued bitter cocoa or chocolate or coffee. It's tasty though.

Nice lightweight Christmas Ale that is completely drinkable.

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Christmas Ale 2010 from Abita Brewing Co.
3.44 out of 5 based on 69 ratings.
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