Samuel Adams White Christmas | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

BA SCORE
79
okay
1,712 Ratings
THE BROS
78
okay
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Samuel Adams White ChristmasSamuel Adams White Christmas
BEER INFO

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

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
As crisp as the first snowfall of the year, this unfiltered white ale is blended with holiday spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, & orange peel. The familiar citrus and wheat characters of the ale are complemented by the warmth of the spices for a festive brew that's perfect for the season.

Added by TMoney2591 on 10-22-2012

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,712
Reviews:
317
Avg:
3.47
pDev:
15.27%
 
 
Wants:
28
Gots:
385
For Trade:
0
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Ratings: 1,712 |  Reviews: 317
Photo of Texasfan549
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of jaydoc
3/5  rDev -13.5%

Photo of spycow
3/5  rDev -13.5%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best before 3/2013.

Pours a murky light orange with a foamy off-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, wheat, citrus zest, and spices. Taste is much the same with a mild spice bitterness with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but nothing very Wintery in my opinion.

 468 characters

Photo of djrn2
2.75/5  rDev -20.7%

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.85/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

an oddly spiced witbier, but it works for me. the pours is really cloudy, pale yellow, with a smallish white head. the nose is tons of orange peel, dried, with some typical winter ale spices as well, but the catch is that its a wheat beer with a hop kick as well. lots of wheat malt and spent yeast cells in the taste up front, spice comes in the middle, again with a lot of orange zest, and is quite hoppy in the finish, pleasantly and surprisingly. good carbonation, lighter than medium body, highly drinkable and frankly a very enjoyable beer. this is something distinct, i think new this year, but one that i would like to see stick around. i could be happy drinking this all winter. one of the highlights of this years winter mix.

 735 characters

Photo of kjkinsey
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of Knapp85
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of nmann08
2.97/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of metter98
3.56/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is slightly hazy yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that quickly died down, leaving a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of holiday spices are present in the nose—nutmeg seems to stand out in particular.
T: Much like the smell, the taste is dominated by strong flavors of nutmeg and also has notes of cinnamon and orange peel along with some hints of wheat.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: With all of the nutmeg and spices, this beer seems like it is a hybrid between a pumpkin ale (sans the pumpkin) and a witbier. The wheat definitely lightens up the body so it is rather easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

 791 characters

Photo of oriolesfan4
4/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of kojevergas
2.48/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with typical simple Sam Adams label art and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired as part of the 2013 winter variety 12 pack box at me local HEB grocery and served into an Avery stem-snifter in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are average given the brewery. "Ale brewed with spices." Reviewed as a witbier because the label identifies it as an "unfiltered white ale." Best before: March 2013. 5.8% ABV confirmed.

Served cold - straight from me fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a 1.5 finger wide head of white colour. Average thickness. Subpar creaminess. Decent consistency. Inconsistent but even lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. No "legs" on this one. Head retention is average - about 2 minutes.

Body colour is a cloudy lemon-orange - clearly unfiltered. Translucent yet nontransparent. No yeast particles are visible. Looks a bit too dark for a witbier, most are bright, vibrant, and yellow.

Not unique or special. I'm optimistic. There are no obvious egregious flaws.

Sm: Artificial lemon fruit. Nutmeg. Artificial orange peel. Pilsner malts. Belgian white malts. Belgian pale malts. Clove. Coriander. Floral hop character. Wheat. Some citrus zest. Some limited banana. Vague hints of bland fruitcake. Not a real fresh aroma.

No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

A pleasant if artificial aroma of average strength. Far from unique or special. A witbier should be fresh and inviting, with a crisp wheat aroma. This is not. The spicing and fruit are also underwhelming. Not real evocative or appealing, but it's not offensive.

T/Mf: Wheat, pale malt, pilsner malt. Too full-bodied and heavy on the palate for a witbier. It should be fleeting, light, and refreshing, but it isn't. Smooth and wet. Overcarbonated

The texture isn't perfectly married to the taste by any stretch, but it suits it in a general sense. Okay presence on the palate. Not astringent, harsh, oily, hot, gushed, or boozy. It hides its ABV pretty well.

Hop profile is entirely floral, though the artificial fruit could emerge somewhat from the hops as well as from whatever fruit extract/syrup they used. I get vague orange peel, a hint of lemon, and vague citrusy zest. Spices also feel artificial and in no way fresh: stale ginger, fake cinnamon (cassia), coriander, clove, and nutmeg. Boy, I wish the fruit peel was much more fresh and evocative, but there's zero authenticity there. Real fruit makes a huge difference.

Little complexity and subtlety here. Very shallow depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour. I'm not huge on this one, but it's by no means intolerable or offensive. Pretty boring. Misses the mark for a witbier.

Dr: The macrobrewing of Sam Adams definitely hit this one hard. I'll probably garnish the other bottles of this with some lemon; I rarely do that unless the low quality of the beer demands it (see Blue Moon). It's downable - I'll easily finish the bottle - but I'd like to see this winter seasonal go away. Not a keeper by any means. A throwaway witbier from Sam Adams that I wouldn't get again or recommend to friends. Well below average. I might honestly prefer Blue Moon.

Not worth aging.

Pair with mediocre food and/or bad news. Leftovers, take-out, getting dumped, and a bad day at work will fit the bill.

D+

---
11.12.14: Truncated impressions:

A: Unremarkable appearance. Pretty generic witbier.

Sm: Lemon. Wheat. Nutmeg. Maybe ginger. Average in strength.

T: Generic, with some artificial spices.

Mf: Overcarbonated and biting. Crisp.

Dr: Downable but low-quality. Another garbage Sam Adams seasonal beer. I'll avoid this in future. Sam Adams' own Blackberry Wit is volumes better.

C-

 3,842 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.17/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy honey color with a rather modest head; the retention was not very impressive nor was the lacing

Smell: Banana, orange peel, cinnamon and nutmeg; more sweet than spicy

Taste: Overripe banana and spice cake flavors, up front, with increasing sweetness developing in the middle; though the orange peel was detected in the aroma, it is only vaguely present in the flavor profile, as this is much more about the banana and holiday spice flavors

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall: Wits aren't my favorite style and this is not one of my favorite Wits

 599 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.45/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a cloudy orangey color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of light ginger notes with some coriander notes also perceptible. Taste is a mix between some light notes of wheat with some coriander and ginger notes. Body is about average with good carbonation. Not bad but really nothing to write home about either.

 361 characters

Photo of zeff80
3.55/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a hazy, pale gold color with a one-finger, white head of bubbly foam. It left some sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of cinnamon, nutmeg and wheat.

T - Lots of holiday spices, cinnamon, nutmeg and spruce-like flavors. Wheat flavor is present but not strong. Some caramel, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a nice witbier. I like the effort to do something different for a winter seasonal.

 497 characters

Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of zestar
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of LXIXME
3.52/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big white head slowly settles into a nice lacing above a clear pale straw golden colored beer.

Malted grains, wheat, light fruits, spices, cloves and more in the aroma of this Witbier.

Light spices dominate that taste with a little bit of the malts coming through as well.

A light spicy dry aftertaste that seems to also harbor some light wetness on this light to medium bodied beer.

A decent enough spicy winter beer.

 422 characters

Photo of dmorgan310
3.75/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into signature pint glass, best before April 2013. Pours hazy golden amber color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty foamy lacing clings on the glass, with plenty of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon, orange peel, wheat, clove, pepper, pear, floral, biscuit, and earthy yeast spiciness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and spice notes. Taste of lemon, pear, cinnamon, nutmeg, orange peel, wheat, light clove, pepper, floral, biscuit, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of light fruits, cinnamon, nutmeg, wheat, biscuit, light clove, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a short bit. Nice balance and complexity of malt and spice notes; with spices being more muted than I expected from the nose; and zero cloying flavors on the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and smooth mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with nearly zero warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a good spiced witbier. Good balance of malt and spice notes with good flavor robustness; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

 1,238 characters

Photo of mothman
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of Boone757
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Aroma of winter green spice, banana, wheat, faint orange, nutmeg. Taste sweet orange peel, spices, ginger. Ok!

111 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.2/5  rDev +21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought a six-pack of Samuel Adams White Christmas on a whim, and I'm glad I did. I haven't been so pleasantly surprised by one of their holiday beers since Old Fezziwig perked up my taste buds decades ago.

It's just a full bodied witbier with cinnamon and nutmeg added, but it's nicely done and perfectly accented by the spice... and sometimes that's all it takes, just taking a simple idea or common thing and adding a little bit of something extra to it. This, of course, is not the first amped-up witbier with holiday spices that's even been done, but it's been done very well.

I won't go into the specific details of the beer (color, clarity, head retention, body and so on) because I doubt that's necessary here, but I'll say that I find it remarkably well balanced. In fact, by the time I'd taken my second sip it occurred to me that it might just be the best (spiced) holiday beer that I've ever tasted. The cinnamon is clearly present but not overdone, and the nutmeg comes through nicely as well. The wheaty malt is full, but not cloying or sweet - there's only 8 IBU's to it, but the spice steps in where needed.

Worth trying for sure!

 1,151 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.47/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz. bottle dated best by March 2013.

A: Pours hazy yellow to light amber with a small white head.
S: Subtle, spicy aroma with notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, bread dough and citrus.
T: The taste largely follows the nose, with some nice winter spicing and bready flavor, It is rather tart too.
M: Medium-bodied; medium-light carbonation that works well.

O: Well done, but not a favored style.

 396 characters

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Samuel Adams White Christmas from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.47 out of 5 based on 1,712 ratings.
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