Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

very good
1,400 Reviews
Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig AleSamuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.90%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-28-2001

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Reviews: 1,400 | Ratings: 3,613
Photo of Lingenbrau
4.21/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I know my rating will probably be higher than most, but this beer is an almost perfect Winter Warmer to me. Brilliantly clear deep amber-reddish hue with a nice fluffy white head. Smells like Christmas! Cinnamon, citrus, mulling spices carry perfectly into the flavor backed by a sweet caramelly breadiness. Well balanced, and light enough to chug, heavy enough to savor. One of the only Sam Adams beers I have continued to look forward to year after year. Cheers!

 470 characters

Photo of Buck89
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. A moderately hazy muddy brown color with a frothy tan head. Aromas of caramel, toffee, nutmeg, and coffee. The taste was warm and malty, with a prominent toffee and caramel flavor but not sweet. All was accentuated with restrained spices - cinnamon and nutmeg. Medium-bodied and flavorful.

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Photo of Squire123
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

5.9% ABV, 25 IBU

Dark mahogany color with a reddish cast, moderate cap and good lacing.

Dark toffeeish malt aroma with hints of spice peaking out like tiny whitecaps on a relatively calm sea.

This is a full flavored brew with roasted malt, caramel, toffee, also touches, and I mean touches, of the cinnamon, ginger and orange peel mentioned on the label. Hops are enough to be noticed from the beginning to the finish with lingering roasted nuts in the aftertaste.

Texture is full, almost chewy.

Overall a good effort for what I will call a Winter Warmer style. Everything is neatly in it's place with all the gears meshing in good order. Not an alcohol or hop monster, it manages to convey bigness without the support of those two. Classy without being flashy.

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Photo of AZBeerDude72
3.6/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark, amber in color with a good foamy head and lacing. Smells of malt, grain, and some nuts. Taste is pretty decent, get a sweet malt taste with some mild grain and light bitter flavor. Overall a smooth finish. Not a bad beer, nothing extreme about it just a good mix from the norm.

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Photo of Holderness
3.86/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L -- Dark amber with a dense and foamy off-white head that leaves a little lacing on the glass
S -- Cinnamon, malts, orange peel, squash,
T -- Pumpkin ale - like. No hoppiness but a solid malt backbone
F -- Starts off medium bodied, but finishes watery
O -- Festive and vibrant. Great name, too

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Photo of 1angrydwarf
3.36/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

L: dark brown with reddish hue darker than their winter lager.
S: Faintly sweet roast grain/malt with unidentifiable spice note. I really had to huff this to get much anything. I think my allergies killed my nose.
T: Primary tastes are heavy malt forward ale with a booze forward profile to provide the warmth. Secondary flavors are the roast with mild caramel sweetness. The only spice I detect is ginger on the finish. Unfortunately my bottle had a pronounced metallic taste. that died down a bit after it warmed.
F: pretty average mouth feel with medium carbonation.
O: Pretty good overall but the metallic taste killed it for me. I will try again though.

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Photo of alarmclock314
3.81/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle, notched expiration of April 2017. Pours transparent amber with a large sized off white head; some lacing. Smells of bready malt, caramel, toasted spices, orange peel, and subtle earthy hops. The taste follows closely with bready malt, caramel, orange, spices, and hops. Strong and lingering bitterness from the peel, light sweetness, and light dryness. Average body and higher carbonation. Overall, this fits the style okay and is drinkable but could use less rindy bitterness, more intensity, and less carbonation. It's currently only sold through their Winter Seasonal variety packs.

 603 characters

Photo of Czequershuus
3.32/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

This beer pours a clear ruby with an average head. The aroma is light, with cinnamon, burnt spice, and dried apricot. The flavor is mild, with toasty bitterness, burnt cinnamon, raisin, and toast. The mouthfeel is light bodied, with soft, foamy carbonation. Overall this is a bit dull, overly bitter for the style, with this odd burnt flavor running throughout.

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Photo of mmmbeer89
3.44/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was a little hesitant about this beer based on the combination of the main ingredients but i was pleasantly surprised by it, A perfect fit for the winter time.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.59/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

4.0 A: Deep plum color. Two fingers of frothy/creamy beige head. Retention is about average and a finger of lacing is left behind. Pretty good here.

3.75 S: Just as advertised. Caramel sweetness with spiciness from cinnamon and ginger. Mild orange peel that I probably wouldn't notice if I didn't know it was in there. Toasty malts with just the right amount of sweetness.

3.5 T: Toasty malts and caramel sweetness. Light spiciness in form of cinnamon and ginger. Mild bitterness from orange peel. Pretty good, but less potent than the nose.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Pleasant mild creaminess. Super smooth.

3.5 D: Good beer and a solid winter beer. Plenty of flavor and easy to drink.

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Photo of gandres
3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle poured to wine glass
Reddish dark amber, looks clear, small foam that disappears quickly
fragrant not a lot of aroma, complex aroma comes out while drinking
medium bitterness
good carbonation, long follow through, finish, bitter/spicy follow through/ aftertaste
very good beer
repeat: yes
look for: No
drank: 11/8/2016 9:03 PM

 348 characters

Photo of jasadewi
3.41/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A: Dark brown color that leaves some white lacing.
S: Very faint smell of bread and brown sugar.
T: Toasted malt, brown sugar, cinnamon, and a splice of coriander.
M: Light bodied, well-carbonated.
O: Pretty tasty, but honestly underwhelming. Both the tastes and smells are not as powerful as I would've liked. Definitely worth a try though.

 343 characters

Photo of q33jeff
3.34/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5


Bottle to pint glass.

AROMA: Very Faint, bread, brown sugar.
LOOK: Dark Brown Pour, weak head
TASTE: Burnt Sugar, Light Cloves and Orange
FEEL: Light with medium carbonation.

I remember this beer being of stronger flavor. Still not bad.

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Photo of SHODriver
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a pint glass to a nice reddish brown topped by a dense two finger off white head that retains well and leaves some lacing
S: Smells of caramel, spices and toffee with some toasted malt
T: Taste is caramel, toasted malt, toffee, and a little bit of spice. Swallow is more spice, toffee, and toasted malt
M: This beer is on the fuller side of medium with decent carbonation and a slightly drying finish.
O: Overall this is a pretty solid beer. It has good flavors and some nice complexity. It definitely fits the style it just sucks you can't buy it by itself.

 581 characters

Photo of zshaft
3.63/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

looks very dark brownish red with good head and nice retention. nose is malt with slight clove and cinnamon maybe even some dark fruit. nOt bad. taste is similar to the nose with some bland malt giving way to some brown sugar. cinnamon. and some fig or plum seems to come to mind. mouthfeel is medium and seems to compliment the beer well. I remember trying this beer many years ago and wanting to puke. my palate has become more refined and I must compliment this brew. nice flavors of clove and cinnamon mix well with the malt base making this a nice winter beer. maybe not a go to. but a nice beer.

 619 characters

Photo of Bierliebhaber3
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This winter warmer pours a deep reddish brown color with a medium tan head. It has very little smell but it has a faint scent of toasted bread. The flavors are bready, with a caramel and nuts and faintly spiced with ginger and cinnamon flavors as well. It also has a faintly bitter coffee flavor that comes out in the finish. The body is medium. It is overall a nice, somewhat malt heavy beer. It’s a good addition to the winter variety pack in my opinion and better than average as far as Sam Adam’s beers go.

 514 characters

Photo of Rock_Glenn
2.24/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

The foundation of barley and hops is nice, why someone thought to put all the spices in there is beyond me. I get it, winter spices, but if I wanted to drink them I'd buy some herbal tea. Also I found it thin for a winter beer.

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Photo of ordybill
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is a dark ruby color with a small tan head. The aroma is fruit, bread, and vanilla. The flavor is a sweet mix of fruit and spices. A very nice beer for the colder months.

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Photo of Slack
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Dark reddish brown in color resembling Dr. Pepper with a small head.

Smells is weak malt, sugar, and spice.

Taste is similarly weak with the sugar and spices mixing with the malt.

Mouthful is light to medium and thin with moderate carbonation.

A bit too weak on the flavor profile (for me) but easily drinkable. I think Great lakes Christmas Ale is a better example of the style.

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Photo of donspublic
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into chalice yields 2 finger light tan head, dissipates to a pool of foam rather quickly. Dark reddish black to look at, little light passes thru. Smells of chocolate and malt. Taste of chocolate with some spice and a nice lingering finish of orange and ginger. Another beer I am going to have to seek out next winter

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Photo of hopsputin
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

a: dark ruby red color with some mahogany and purple notes. 1/2 finger tan head

s: roasted malt, fig, raisin, oak, vanilla, brown sugar, ginger, fresh bread

t: very smooth drinker. brown sugar, sweet malts, oak, ginger, clove, some faint roasted malts, and a hint of honey. as it warms, i'm picking up a slight diactyl note, but it is not off-putting. its actually works to smooth out the beer on the back end a bit

m: mouthfeel is (and this sounds a bit weird) full-bodied light. its light in the mouth but has enough carbonation to really fill the mouth. works well with the style

o: nothing crazy (good or bad) here, but a real nice drinker. its smooth, easy to drink, and utilizes a nice harmony of flavors. nice to pick up, enjoy, and not think about too hard

 776 characters

Photo of Jacobob10
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle from the Winter Classics mixed pack.

Pours a translucent ruby brown with a medium-sized, creamy, tan head. Good retention. Toasted malt and chocolate in the aroma with some light citrus, not clear if that's from the hops or addition of orange peel to the brew. Either nutmeg or cinnamon and some ginger as well. Flavor is much of the same with a moderately spicy finish. Medium bodied, lively carbonation, clean and warming. Slightly syrupy, but never strays too far in that direction.

Each year, I look forward to the two Fezzies that are always one of, if not, the best parts of the Winter Classics pack.

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Photo of Marraybay
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Look: Very dark reddish brown; Less than 1-finger of head; some glass
lacing and soapiness.

Smell: Something sweet--dried fruit, vinous, toffee--but having difficulty
identifying the note. Not really picking up on any bread, citrus, or spice.

Taste: With small sips, picking up on an initial malty sweet note of some kind--perhaps
bittersweet chocolate--that the transitions into some mild citrus bitterness.

Feel: Prickly; Reasonably full body.

Overall: 2nd Fezziwig from the remnants of an SA Holiday pack that I inherited;
I drank this bottle more deliberately and at a slower pace, which I think helped
the overall experience; (There was probably more residual warming as a result.)
This pour came off a bit more like an IPA or a DIPA than the first and as such, I
think it was more enjoyable. Paired with a hearty Hungarian Goulash and fried

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.07/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Pours darker than expected with a chestnut brown body, 3 fingers of beige head, and nice lacing left behind. Opacity is 60%.

It smells of nuts and festive fruits, namely cranberry, figs, plums, peaches, and pecans. A little twinge of hop behind it all.

The taste is...different. First it's sour, then bitter, then watery, and then yeasty. Standout flavors are brown breads, pecans, mushy plums, old banana peels, and smoked cherries. A chemical presence is also detected.

Feel is watery and buzzing, and a dry and woody finish.

Hmph. Well overall I'm not too impressed but I guess it could be worse. It's better than Sparkling Ale and Holiday Porter, but still a far cry behind the Chocolate Bock. Overall the Holiday Pack is a weak purchase.

 749 characters

Photo of Samlover55
3.79/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

BB april 16
12oz bttl poured into pint glass
L- dark brown, thick tan head nice retention, leaves lacing
S- cinnamon, toffee
T- smooth blend of spice and malt , this beer is sweet and spice, tangy, with notes of chocolate and toffee
F- light bodied, crisp
O- this beer started off slow but as it warmed it released its complex goodness, great beer on a cold wet winter day

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Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.8 out of 5 based on 3,613 ratings.
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