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

very good
3,631 Ratings
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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Ratings: 3,631 |  Reviews: 1,403
Photo of Narthax
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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

Photo of Zuidman
3.02/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Pantalones
3.86/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Last bottle from the variety pack; bottled on the 324th day of 2016, best-by month listed is May 2017.

Nice dark red-orangey, bordering on brown color to this one. It's very clear too, though dark enough that I need to shine a light through it to see the swirling, rising bubbles coming up from the bottom of the glass. Nice layer of light tan foam on top, not huge but definitely densely-packed and seems to be sticking around for a while.

Smell is malty -- some breadiness up front (maybe almost sourdough-ish at time), some sweetness hanging out in the background. Fairly mild in the area of smell, I can maybe pick up a little bit of some spices blending in there but they don't really stand out. Seems like maybe a little bit of something that I can only describe as "English-ness" present -- not sure how to put it other than that, there's a particular flavor/smell that I notice in a lot of English ales and it's present here too.

Taste is also primarily malty on the first sip, but with a much nicer richer medium/dark bready flavor to it -- I'm noticing a flavor like bread crusts on the end for sure, a little toasty. The "English-y" flavor is present here too, though secondary to the rich breadiness. I'm not really picking up much of the spices in the flavor either, but the malt is really nice so that's okay. There's maybe a bit of a cinnamony-spicy thing going on, but it's just hanging out behind the malt, adding a little something extra every now and then -- seems to mostly pop in on the end. Seems to be a little bit of noticeable bitterness on the end too (at least now that I'm over halfway through the bottle), which surprises me a bit, but I suppose with this being 25 IBUs a little bit of bitterness being present isn't unusual. Burps are coming up sweeter and more caramel-y than the beer itself is, interestingly.

Mouthfeel is pretty nice too, matching the flavor pretty well -- not too fizzy, drinkable but not too light or thin-feeling. It's got a substantial feel to it which works nicely with how much bready-toasty malt flavors are going on. Though the flavors don't seem especially sweet, there is this lingering bit of stickiness, especially after getting near the end of the glass it seems.

Overall, a very nice seasonal beer that I'm glad I finally got a chance to try. It actually reminds me a bit of Hobgoblin and other English-style ales, albeit a darker version with richer bready malt -- I suppose that shouldn't be too surprising considering that the Winter Warmer style is English in origin, though! I figure if it seems "English-ish" despite being made by an American brewery, that's a good sign that they knew what they were doing with this one. I'll join the masses (at least on this site, it seems) in saying that I'd definitely buy a six-pack if they ever finally0 decide to put this one in six-packs.

 2,869 characters

Photo of syzygy0
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of justinm4bama
4.04/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Presentation: 12 oz bottle freshness notched for April 2017 poured into a pint glass.

Look: Clear, dark, red brown coloration with a 3/4 finger head of thick off white foam that rapidly collapses, leaving a soapy residue across the top of most of the beer.

Smell: Mostly malts , not much of a spice profile.

Taste: Mostly malts, slight bitterness from the spices, and faint alcohol heat in the back of the throat on the swallow.

Feel: Medium body with carbonation on the high side.

Overall: An average beer, nothing special but not offensive either.

 554 characters

Photo of ThePold
4.39/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

From a fresh bottle at 43 degrees in a snifter for fun, doggone it! Okay head, not long lasting. Brown. Beer color is also brown, nice looking brew. I don't smell a lot of cinnamon or orange. Some ginger. Tastes like Christmas time to me, though!

 252 characters

Photo of wuthrichj15
3.28/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice dark brow. Small head that dissipated rather quickly. Not a bad winter warmer. Good flavors, cinnamon, orange, nice maltiness. Had one last night. Lacing was nice around the glass as well.

 202 characters

Photo of DesertFox24
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of dcscientist
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was decent, but not as good as their winter lager. I can't quite put my finger on it, but there was just something missing from this to really make it a good winter warmer. Sam Adams has done better.

 206 characters

Photo of PMarcy78
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Fitzy01
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Greasy
3.84/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of HamdenHector
3.54/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: crystal clear; deep mahogany in color; 2+ finger light brown head that receded slowly to a thin cap; nice lacing;

S: somewhat restrained; sweet malt - reminds me of a Scottish ale;

T: orange zest for a moment, then ginger gets added in; the orange and ginger go side by side to the finish; no bitterness;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation; lightly dry finish;

O not especially interesting, but easy to drink;

 420 characters

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

Photo of Jeremiah87
3.64/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of JakerLou
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of jrsqc7
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Ruby red with no head and no lacing.

Flavor is malts upfront followed by a mess of spices. The flavors are muddled and indistinct leaving a weird metallic bitterness. The malt is quite good.

Feels smooth with slight burning aftertaste. Not terrible but certainly not great.

 280 characters

Photo of chris826
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of ABabbidge
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Dark red-brown color. Thin head.

S: Malty with ginger and orange rind.

T: Roasted malty up front, quickly followed by some spicy notes, I get mostly ginger and cinnamon. There is a bitter, spicy finish that lingers for awhile.

F: Medium body and carbonation.

O: The spices are good and not over done, although I wouldn't mind if they kicked up the spices maybe a little more. Like everyone else, I wish I didn't have to buy a sampler pack just to be able to get 2 bottles of this.

 488 characters

Photo of jfeyes
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Fezziwig poured a dark amber with legit lacing......caramel, orange peel, spice notes, not especially bitter on the finish and the pleasant tastes lingers. I found this to be a most enjoyable brew.

 198 characters

Photo of drews240
3.77/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of hermit990
3.79/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of FBarber
4.04/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours brown with an orange tinge. Thin tan head. Appearance is nothing special, but is appropriate for the style.

Smell is very carmel-ly. Malt forward with a nice balance of mulling spices present in the beer.

Taste robust. Tons of rich malts. Nice array of mulling spices is present with some ginger and orange peel. Touch of bitterness on the back end more reminiscent of the orange rind.

Feel is full bodied yet light and drinkable.

This is one of my favorite winter warmers - I've loved this one for a long time - and its one of Sam Adams' better beers. Just wish I could get it without needing to buy the big variety pack.

 636 characters

Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.8 out of 5 based on 3,631 ratings.
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