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

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Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig AleSamuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale
Very Good
3,688 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

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 3,688 |  Reviews: 1,416
Photo of MirImage
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Poured with a nice thick head, the head dissapated quickly stayed thin, but was still present. Had some nice lacing.

Smell: Right off the nose you get corriander. Some honey notes. I also picked up some cinnamon and brown sugar. Reminded me of baked cookies.

Taste: Taste isn't as sweet as it smells. There is the bitterness of orange peel with slight caramel malts. Very strong cinnamon taste.

Mouthfeel: Fairly watery, especially for a "winter warmer". Very crisp, not really to style.

Drinkability: Although I really enjoy this beer, it isn't something I want to drink all night. I would maybe have two in a night.

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Photo of shand
4.34/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle marked best before April 2011 into a mug.

Appearance: Pours a very deep brown with a fingers worth of mocha head that disappates pretty quicky. Lacing is subpar.

Smell: Delicious. A bunch of warm spices, malts, nuts, and chocolate. A hint of orange rounds this out.

Taste: Not as much of a flavor blowout as I expected from the nose, but still good. It's a constantly shifting beer that's a little more subtle than I'd like, but still impressive. First comes the orange peel, cherry and nutmeg, then comes in a snap of ginger and some cinnamon that keeps things interesting. There's some malty chocolate hanging around the whole time, and wait a second, are those hops? Yeah, those are hops for sure! This would be an easy 5 if the flavors were just amped up a bit, but as it stands it's still a great beer. Could be perfect though.

Mouthfeel: Just substantial enough for the spiced citrus style, without being cloying. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: This is hampered just a little bit by how excellent it is. This beer has a fantastic aftertaste that makes you just want to let it linger. While I'm drinking it, I take a few big gulps. But then I just sit back and let the beer work it's course.

This is really an excellent beer that could work at almost any time of the year. It's still hot outside in Florida and I'm enjoying the heck out of this. Worth seeking out a variety pack for sure for this - I'm glad I got a case!

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Photo of cooch69
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a deep mahogany brown with lighter highlights. It has a one and a half inch white head that falls pretty quick.
This beer has hints of cacao, a mettalic scent, an herbal hoppiness, and a dark bready maltiness that is slightly sweet. I also got some estery nuances(sour cherry and pear).
This beer shows dark roasty malt characters upon tasting. There is a bit of a cherry in the backround. And a bit of hopiness in the finish. Also the alcohol is pretty obvious in the drink. A little dry hazelnut roastiness wraps up the nice complexities to this beer.
Medium to full bodied, this beer is warm and has nice flavors and subtle complexities.

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Photo of dwilson01
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz into my new belgium tulip glass, a very dark brown colored body, tan mocha colored head which clings to the glass well as it dissipates.

The smell alludes a slight spiciness; nutmeg, cinnamon, coriander, and orange peel and has a solid malty scent giving off a chocolate aroma.

The flavor is exactly what I expected from the smell but much more dense, its got a malty sweetness which I get throughout the entire tasting which supplies the molasses, roasted chesnut, and slightly chocolate flavored backbone of the brew. The cherry on top is the excellent balance of spicing I get in there, cinnamon and nutmeg in the fore with a tinge of cloves along with a bite of orange peel spice. I'm a fan.

The mouthfeel is great, thick enough to be a porter but the spices supply such variety to the palate that it doesn't weigh you down at all. A great wintertime sipper which has been my favorite in the Sam Adams winter pack in the past.

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Photo of mstyne
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Part of the Winter pack, purchased at Hannaford on NY 43.

Deep red with strong carbonation, and a 1/2" of thick creamy head. Head sticks around, good lacing.

Aroma is crisp, sweet, slightly hoppy. Very light.

Taste is excellent, very complex. Chocolate, licorice(?), malty, bready goodness. Oh, how I look forward to this time of year, and how I am saddened at how there are only 2 to a 12 pack.

Boston Beer Company: Please, please, please consider a sixer of this for 2011!

N.B. The Cranberry Lambic is dead!

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Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - A deep reddish toffee color with a small but foamy head which clings to the glass.

S - Cinnamon and spice dominate the nose. Not unlike many of the pumpkin beers I've (we all have...) been drinking the past couple of months.

T - Spicy tang up front, definitely nice with the cinnamon and ginger. Spice recedes into sweet malts and ends with the signature SA aftertaste.

M - Light and crisp for the amount of spiciness in this brew. Does stick around in the mouth though, ginger and spice mostly.

D - I could drink this any day of the year, the spice goes with many occasions in my opinion.

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Photo of MrOH
4.36/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Deep mahonagy color with rich off white head. Great lacing.

Caramel, oranges, spice and a touch of alcohol in the nose, very appetizing.

Lots of caramel with a hint of cocoa, followed by slightly sour, sweet orange with touches of ginger and cinnamon.

Very rich, full mouth with enough carbonation to lift it all to prepare for another drink.

Highly drinkable for being so rich. A lot of flavor for 5.9%.

Very full bo

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Photo of RichieS2
4.62/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Czech pils glass.

A - A fiery ruby with moderate to heavy carbonation; creamy whitehead with respectable lacing on the glass.

S - Very interesting the malts are masked by all kinds of spices, or in other words it smells like a malty spice beer.

T - Amazingly complex, it starts out very sweet and malty before the spices assert themselves, first it goes into wheat mode with the coriander present and then it alternates between cinnamon and ginger before finally giving way to the hops. Basically this is one of the most complex beers I think I have ever tasted.

M - Pleasingly thick.

D - Not having a second one would be a sin, honestly SA should repackage Winter Lager as SA Bock and make this their winter seasonal.

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Photo of bohemiandonut
4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

No reviews yet this season*? ::cracks knuckles:: Ahem.

Pours with the same crystal clear, gem-like purity I've been seeing in every beer from this winter box. Thick, cream-like head adorns a balsamic-tinged garnet reminiscent of a sour brown ale.

The aroma manages to avoid a rusty spice rack and is instead quite warm, tart, and sweet, like caramel and orange peel. There is little actual "orange" flavor going on here however and the tartness is more akin to apple or spiced cider in my opinion. Some stray whiffs of cinnamon and nutmeg break through but at this point I'm just hallucinating anyway.

I like the spicy/sourness going on with this beer, which lends the sweety malts a touch of class, like a cinnamon stick in your coffee, or an orange twist on your mug of cocoa. S.A. is slowly but surely turning me into a winter person. This is clearly their season of choice. Get some!

*Edit: Apparently I was on page 2... lucky me!

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Photo of RankRefugee88
4.3/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into snifter.

A - A dark amber body with a small whitish head. Not much lacing.

S - Malty and sweet, a hint of roasted coffee malts. Cinnamon and other spices are there too.

T - Very delicious smoked flavor. An array of flavors drop a bomb on the taste buds. Very well rounded flavor here. What I'm enjoying most about the taste of this beer is that no particular flavor is dominating, all the flavors are meshed very well. Caramel, coffee, cinnamon spices, dark winter fruits (a tart kick), are all complimenting one another. Something I love about the taste of this beer is the roasted warmth that you immediately taste and feel on the palate. Perfect aftertaste. I can definitely understand why this is categorized as "winter warmer." I could go on and on about the taste of this beer right now.

M - Just the right amount of carbonation in the mouth feel. Warming on the palate, chewy.

D - I split the winter variety with my brother so I can only have one of these, but they're definitely easy to drink.

It's too bad that this beer is exclusive, but at the same time it's something that makes you look forward to the winter time. Excellent brew, two thumbs up.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Might as well round out the winter brews from SA that I haven't reviewed... poured into my Old Guardian goblet.

1" off white head... nice lacing.. the brew is pretty deep amber.

Nose shows good maltiness with some caramel and dark toast... spices are there and thankfully not too much... I get some orange zest and possibly cinnamon.

Flavor is pretty much spot on for my liking.. not overly done in the spice cabinet... same as the aromas, but I am picking up on some ginger.... the malts get lost a bit in the spices... but I still sorta dig it... a little metallic note in the finish.

Body is a nice medium/lite with a smooth small bubble carbonation.. I like it, but I will probably save the other bottle for when the bro comes over.


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Photo of TheFlern
1.33/5  rDev -64.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

A: Pours a dark brown redish color. head is off white in color and dissipates quickly. No lacing.

S: Malty, toasted notes. Spice. None of which smells pleasant.

T: Pretty much undrinkable. Its very spicey but what spices? I couldn't tell you because it is so muddled. The malt flavor seems almost stale. I was extremely disappointed in this beer.

Mf: Heavy, thick, milky. Combined with the flavor makes this basically a disgusting beer.

D: I will NEVER buy this beer again. It was almost a drain pour but I managed to choke it down with a friends help.

Final thoughts: Avoid at all costs and buy something else from SA or a different winter warmer.

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Photo of biggred1
3.92/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark, russet amber with a creamy sand colored head that leaves some blobs of fine lace on the glass. Caramel cubes, cinnamon and herbal hop aromas. Orange peel and cinnamon spice with a strong caramel malty backbone. On the leaner side of medium bodied and slightly sticky with fine carbonation. This beer really stands the test of time, I have had this beer every winter for about ten or eleven years and it's still good.

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Photo of DovaliHops
3.98/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Included in 2010 Winter 12 pack. Pours a clear dark, reddish brown with a big white head that disappears quickly. Scent is very malty with hints of cinnamon and light chocolate. Taste is very light and full of flavor. Tons of malt flavors with cinnamon, a bit of nutmeg, and chocolate. A bit of ginger lingers on the back of the tongue. Mouthfeel is very full-bodied, but at the same time it remains light and extremely drinkable. Solid beer.

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Photo of wvu9787
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Old Fezziwing Ale from the Sam Adams 2010 Winter Classic mix pack. Poured into my big old Cleavland Indians beer mug. This beer clocks in at 5.9% ABV.

Apperence- Pours a dark amber/brown color with a off white/tan head, a good bit of lacing through out the glass.

Smell- Malts, Hops, Carmel, spices but not sure what.

Taste- Wow this is a mixer for sure. I can taste roasted malts, hops, carmel, dark chocolate, coffee, and many diffrent spics. Its a flavor rainbow but yet still is a little bland.

Mouthfeel- Dry, little bit carbonated, little bit creamy, a high medium body.

Drinkabilty- pretty good with this, I could drink a few of these, i dont know about a 6er but overall i really enjoyed this brew. Cheers!

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Photo of lovindahops
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

continuing with the holiday 12 pack

A- dark with a standard head. Fuzzy head of foam but not too strong

S- a malty smell is draped in some sweet themes

T- cinnamon and sugar mingle with some coffee and toasty malt. It's different no doubt. Some good flavor

M- more Sam syrupy stuff.

D- well it's something different from them. I guess most of the beers just seem like the same experience. Still it is pretty drinkable and you can put them down

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a very dark brown color with a slight head. The nose brings a good dose of cinnamon, nutmeg, and some other wintry spices. A bit of chocolate and roasted malt in the background. Taste brings a lot of spicing and some malt. The feel is medium with a good balance of spicing and roast, something I find to be quite rare in this style, and thus worthy of a fairly high rating. Drinks quite well and is a nice treat during the holiday season.

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Photo of BeerMasterD
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Clear dark amber/brown with orange in light. A good sized offwhite fluff head with great sticky lace rings.
S- Cinnamon and nutmeg, malty.
T- Tootsie pop candy sugar, Spicey and malty, sweet with a faint bitter trace of hops.
M- A smooth medium feel and moderate carbonation.
O- There is just enough spice going on here for a good aroma and taste.

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Photo of aggiearcher13
4.18/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle that's been in the back of the cellar since last winter.

A: Dark ruby with a great head, sticks around the whole time and leaves excellent lacing.

S: Toasty, some caramel malt, and spices that I can't distinguish which is a good sign.

T: Beery up front, which I appreciate in a spiced ale. Mostly caramel and raisin. Also some orange notes and dark fruit. Spicy, cinnamon on the back end.

M: Great body to this one, carbonation is spot on.

D: Most drinkable winter warmer I've had in a while, but then again it's august in Texas so maybe my perspective is a little skewed.

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Photo of jacobseyb
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Interesting beer, poured from the bottle into a goblet. Ruby red body with an offwhite head, about one finger worth. Smell is fruity primarily like a sweet grape or raisin with significant malts. Taste is much the same maybe even a bit sour. Feel is nice and warming with pretty medium body and appropriate carbonation. Overall very enjoyable and drinkable.

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Photo of LuthersMug
3.63/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - The beer's color reminds me of ice tea, but when it catches the light, a warming reddish hue comes through. A tan, creamy 1/2 inch head lasted for most of the beer.

S - The sweet caramel was dominant with hints of orange.

T - Roasted dark chocolate was the first flavor to come. Next, a sweet, creamy malt with caramel and other sweet flavor settled in. Finally, the beer finished with a spicy ginger bite.

M - The creamy malts were the best part of the beer. The carbonation was just right.

D - One was enough for me.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark, dark brown with big off white head. Reduces to ring, with some clingy tan lace.

S - Burnt chalky malt, hops hiding up and around the end.

T - Rich deep dark malt, not enough hop to balance, IMO.

M - Medium body, good coat and card.

D - Surprisingly low ABV and therefore very drinkable.

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Photo of bifrojm
4.24/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into an imperial pint glass. Pours a beautiful reddish brown with a small head.

The head quickly dissipated, which sucks because the aroma is the best part of this beer. Strong hints of cinnamon, and other spices, maybe a little clove, over top of some nice sweet fruit.

Taste is sweet, malty and warm, with a touch of creaminess. Much of the spice aroma is lost in the taste, but it is there in the backgound, and adds some character.

Very drinkable, and a solid winter brew. I could have several of these in a sitting, but would probably move on to something else eventually.

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Photo of CBlack85
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass

Pours an amber / brown color with a huge off white dense head, that leaves a little bit of lacing.

Lots of spices in the nose. Cinnamon, nutmeg, a slightly sweet fruitiness. Not overly hopped, but a decent hop presence.

Malty, fruity flavors are most noticable. The spices are not nearly as present in the taste as they are in the smell. I am able to detect some cinnamon and maybe a little nutmeg, but not much else in the way of spices. I actually get a nice hint of coffee that I wasn't expecting. Medium bodied and well carbinated (almost overcarbinated). Easy to drink and well crafted.

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Photo of DNICE555
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried a bottle at Mora and Josh's

A - A dirty rust color with head that dissipates into lacing which paints a good portion of the glass

S - Nice spices, cinnamon, ginger, fruit.

T - A nice spicy kick up front with some bitterness towards the end.

M - High carbonation in this fizzy spicy winter warmer. Makes my palate feel like it's in a warm cozy house by the fire on Christmas day while it's snowing outside.

D - One of my favorite winter warmer's right next to the BBC cabin fever.

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Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.77 out of 5 with 3,688 ratings
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