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

very good
1,401 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: 1,401 | Ratings: 3,621
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.

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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.

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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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Photo of HoppyBastard
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Shaker pint glass, "enjoy before" date April 2016.

APPEARANCE: pours a clear, reddish-brown color with one-finger tan head that slowly dissipated until a thin, unbroken layer of bubbles remained, medium carbonation, there is significant lacing on the glass.

SMELL: brown sugar, bread, cinnamon and ginger, very pleasant to the nose.

TASTE: the taste follows the nose, initially brown sugar and roasted malt, bread then cinnamon and ginger.

PALATE: medium carbonation, somewhat creamy.

OVERALL: this is probably my favorite beer in this style, I always enjoy a winter warmer during the season, Sam Adams is making some good beers right now, I enjoyed this and will have again next year, I would highly recommend to anyone who enjoys the style.

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Photo of Ale_Dog
4.21/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Perfect Holiday ale. Nice malt backbone, well balanced spices. I look forward to this every year; and, by the 55 other pages, others seem to enjoy it too. SA seems to be doing fine.

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Photo of weaselface89
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A- a darker reddish copper color. off white small head that doesn't stick around. very clear
S- smells of chocolate malts. maybe alittle raisin
T- tasting the chocolate and also some spices in the aftertaste.
F- medium mouthfeel
O- becoming a yearly tradition with this one. better than I remember. will get again

 313 characters

Photo of Anacross
4.16/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

One of my favorite holiday brews. Smooth and crisp, well balanced and spicy. Perfect for warming up for the holidays with friends around the fireplace. A true classic.

 167 characters

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

Smooth and velvety with a well-blended and balanced Christmasy spice profile. One of my favorite seasonal beers; leaves you warm and glowing and always puts a smile on my face. Yum!

 183 characters

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

Brown, Amber in the light. Light fruit, spice smell. Some malt, sweet spiced fruit. Not bad. I'll drink it in the mixed pack. Like some of the others better, but I'll take it.

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.3/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

It's been years since I was luck enough to have this on draught in the late 90's. My local store split out the singles from the winter pack apparently. Anyhow, glad to revisit - this pours mahogany with thin off-white head. Aroma is malty with mild spice, chocolate, and fresh-cracked hazelnut. Flavor is similar, but somehow different in a good way, with the nut and spice mixing to produce the dominant, but never overwhelming, flavors. This on top of malt and slight caramel sweetness is fantastic. I really enjoy this one, then and now.

 540 characters

Photo of hman43
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Look: It pours dark amber with plum overtones. The head is tan, with a slight yellowish color in it.

Smell: it has aromas of chocolate, roasted, and a bit of toffee. There is also a slight citrus smell of oranges. It has aromas of brown sugar, nutmeg, and maybe a bit of cinnamon.

Taste: It has a sweet, fruity combination mixed with the malts. There are flavors of orange, chocoalte, roasted malts, and some spices highlighted by nutmeg. The combination also gives it a licorice type flavor with it as well.

Feel: It has moderate carbonation with a moderate fell to it. There is a slight bittering on the palate with a wee bit of tart.

Overall: This is a good holiday warmer with a good mixture of malts and spices combined with sweet fruity flavors.

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Photo of BillBrasky
3.32/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Look: Nice appearance with a one inch head of creamy off-white head. It is dark brown sparkling with nice lacing.

Smell: Could detect some spiciness, maybe molasses, chocolate & cinnamon

Taste: starting with a slight sweetness, average carbonation and a slight bitterness at the end.

Feel: Light to medium mouth feel

Overall: Really enjoyable beer. I would certainly buy this again or anticipate it in another seasons pack.

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

Smooth, puts me in the mood for a fireplace and footy pajamas. Poured into a stemmed goblet, darkest brown, three finger head even with a gentle pour. Smells of malt, tastes of spice, cinnamon, not overly sweet. Velvet mouthfeel, overall quite enjoyable.

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Photo of NateDyk47
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L- dark amber with a thin white head
S- malt and spice
T- spice, hint of cinnamon, kind of sweet at the end
F- medium body and lightly carbonated... very smooth

Not bad for a Sam Adams. Good Christmas-time beer.

 215 characters

Photo of illpass78
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a stemmed glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark amber that becomes red when held to the light. Lots of lacing.

Aroma: Nice arrangement of aromas here. It has a malty sweet smell along with spice and maybe a whiff of smoke.

Taste: Very tasty. Big sweet malt flavor along with cinnamon, ginger, raisins, plums, a touch of maple and toast.

Mouthfeel: Easy on the palate and very smooth.

Overall: One of Sam Adams's best in my opinion. Terrific cold weather beer. Tastes as close to "like Christmas" as a beer can. Now let's go a-wassailing.

 562 characters

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

Part of a 12 pack winter variety. Brown amber color, smooth caramel malty taste, medium mouthfeel, overall an easy drinking beer. It's not something that's notable, but you wouldn't mind drinking it.

 201 characters

Photo of Catracho5
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass

A: Pours a reddish, brown color, clear, some lacing, not see much carbonation, no head retention, looks thin.

A: Caramel, roasted malts, hint of nuttiness, not getting any of the spices that are on the label, sweet, malts, hint of nuttiness.

T: Like the nose, some caramel, roasted and sweet malt combination, hint of nuttiness, picked up a hint of citrus, slight ginger, slight cinnamon, has some complexity and depth, very enjoyable.

M: On the light side, easy drinking, smooth.

O: Sam Adams makes some good middle of the road beers, they don't disappoint but they don't impress me, this beer falls into that category, good amount of flavor, easy drinking, enjoyable, it just does't pop with flavor and aroma, probably won't seek this out again but it would not refused if offered.

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Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.8 out of 5 based on 3,621 ratings.
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