Stoudt's Winter Ale (2008-2009) | Stoudts Brewing Co.

186 Ratings
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Stoudt's Winter Ale (2008-2009)Stoudt's Winter Ale (2008-2009)

Brewed by:
Stoudts Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Stoudts changes this recipe annually. We'll be attempting to split apart entries down the road.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-11-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 186 |  Reviews: 173
Photo of alexgash
2.24/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Best before 4/7/07
Pours a darkish garnet with barely a trace of head. Just a few large bubbles around the edge. Syrup aromas mix with toasted malt, light cocoa, homebrew, and faint hop spice. Vaguely sweet malts up front. Some toasted grains follow, with barely sweet apple and light chocolate notes near the end. Finish has a modest hop bitterness, but no hop flavor. Mouthfeel is thin and undercarbonated. Tastes off, but not infected.

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Photo of luvND
2.44/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The 2001 version was a rye ale that I enjoyed enough to buy 3 cases throughout the season and kept several in my cellared collection. I cannot even express my dissappointment in the 2002 version. This brewery is usually money in the bank for at least a respectable beer, but I had a hard time finding anything good to say about this brew. I have to say it actually tastes bad. I cannot tell exactly what it is, but it has been overspiced with something. Invest more wisely in Holiday brew, go with Anchor or Sierra Nevada instead.

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Photo of k3n
2.45/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle from Tangfoot, best by 4/7/7.

A: Deep mahogany, reddish-brown, 1/2" head dissipates to a thin ring, leaving no lacing. Steady flow of bubbles keeps up the ring.

S: Toasty, malty, burnt coffee, burnt caramel.

T: The label says brewed with cocoa, so I'm really trying to find the cocoa....and not finding it. =( Hits with a bit of acidity in the front, akin to coffee, and then that's about it. Where's my beer?

M: Fizzy. Thin. meh.

D: Not so much. Too bad, the smell was quite inviting, but the beer didn't seem to match up.

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Photo of BACTAdam
2.53/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- No doubt, the color is likened best to cola. I just so happened to have a glass of Diet Pepsi that my wife was drinking right next to it and it was identical. Pours a medium to thin head with some cola like bubbles.

S- I didn't get a strong aroma from this one. Maybe a slight coffee or malty smell.

T- Very disappointed. Tastes of black coffee and not at all complex. Very one dimensional and not what you would expect in a quality winter ale.

M- Has a very thin mouthfeel for its appearance however looks can be deceiving and it appears to look more like a porter than an ale. It sort of tricks you.

D- It's drinkable but kind of boring. I won't be running out to try another one.

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Photo of lackenhauser
2.61/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Nice,deep garnet color. Ok head. Low aroma-slight malt but its real small. Ok flavor-malty enough but has no real flavor to me. Slight lingering bitterness. Rather thin body-at 7% I would think there would be more of a feel to it. The whole thing is rather 1 dimensional. I am not sure what it is trying to be. I gotta pass.

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Photo of brentk56
2.66/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2006 version

Appearance: Pours a clear dark amber color with a modest tan head that fails to do much in the lacing department

Smell: Smells a bit musty, frankly, like a dirty clothes hamper, that, and a bit like smoked bacon

Taste: Starts out with a caramel flavor that quickly turns phenolic; in the middle, there is a prickly cedar tone that joins and hangs around, coating the front of the tongue; the finish provides a bit of cocoa

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied but very prickly; moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Not sure what they are shooting for but this one is firing a few blanks, I am sad to say

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Photo of blitheringidiot
2.91/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Winter has passed & Spring has arrived. Time to celebrate the arrival of April 1st, no foolin’, with a taste of STOUDT’S Winter Ale. As the label says, this is a dark copper from a 355 mL brown bottle including a blank ‘best if served by’ box. Winter Ale stormed into my clean, give-away pint with a snowy one finger coating of tan head that settles to a coating as I write, eventually turning into a Picasso painting towards the ending.

The aroma of Winter Ale is bear-ly noticeable, mostly in hibernation. We’ll see how this squall develops.

First taste is tangy, with buttery wood notes. Not hops, but a (guessing, now just free forming) spruce or nutmeg? Slightly into the complex tones. It’s a tongue swisher. Carrots!!! Hard to describe, elusive in the tongue. Cloying, dry tart lemony finish.

Medium bodied and sweet maltiness. Reminds me of almost an A & W rootbeer, but flatter. Not to say that it’s bad, just, flatter.

Not super high in the swig factor. Musty, sticking, tart aftertaste.

Last swigs: This N’or Easter blew in and blew out. Can’t say I grabbed a snow shovel to dig it, but it did plow into my curious tastebuds. Hmm. Worth a sneak peek, weather permitting. Overall, I got snowed, man!

Beer is good. Happy brrrr-ing!

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Photo of malty
2.95/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a clear cola colored liquid with a beige 1/2" head.

Scents of cocoa, leather, burnt peanuts and fig newtons.

Flavors of leather (for real) very dry and roasted malt profile with apparent cocoa notes. A dry hoppiness is very apparent at the finish. A metallic mineralness and chalky dryness quell any others flavors I might be able to detect.

Mouthfeel is a bit watery and between light and medium bodied. Very dry finish.

Drinkability is OK. Nothing too obtrusive, but it's 'one and done' for me thanks.

Overall a safe and rather strange winter seasonal. The body, mouthfeel and flavor levels were all very limp. I hate to say that if I didn't know this was a fresh batch, I'd swear it had either turned or was starting to go bad. The overall dryness of this ale intrigued me. Glad I tried it, but probably won't try again.

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Photo of Goldfishman
3/5  rDev -18.5%

Photo of ZAP
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I'm guessing this is about a year old but it tastes fine...pours a bronze like color...little head...nose is decent enoughsome fruity notes...also some spruce tips like sweetness...body is very like...a little fizzy seltzter water like mouthfeel....flavor is weak...almost like a lighter red ale...

Not a recommended Winter Ale....just not very big or ttasty and even if you look at it as a session style ale it falls short....

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Ruby copper hue with a nice off white rather thin cream head nice speckled lacing even spread lattice pattern. Aroma: Herbal hops with a dose of mild holiday spicings, mildly scented malt sweetness topped off with some spruce tones not bad. Taste: Tastebuds are welcomed with a herbal hopped striking sweet candy tone balanced by some spruce pine like tones and spices along with quite a little dose of hops for a winter ale. Mouthfeel: Not as full bodied, label describes it as rich and hearty maybe a bit rich in flavor but definitely not too hearty one of the lighter Christmas ales I've yet tasted, but not bad decent carbonation. Drinkability: Not a favorite just too many other incredible Christmas ales out ther to land in mediocrity with this one.

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Photo of francisweizen
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2003 edition: A dark reddish/brown brew with a small skimming of a white head. Aromas are malty...and...well...that's about it. This is a very uncomplex malty brew with some slight hops in there for balancing purposes only. The taste is malty to an extreme, and boring as well. The mouthfeel is thin for a winter beer and the drinkability is not the best. I almost fell asleep drinking this one!

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Photo of marc77
3.05/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy light brown / bronze hue w/ a head that quickly recedes into sparse islands of bubbles. Dark caramel and biscuit malt in aroma, along w/ an herbal and mildly spicy hop nose. Hints of dark fruit & roasted grain as well. Fairly tame aromawise. Mild hop bitterness upfront is ceded by lightly acidic, unripe berry - like tartness. Malt character is pedestrian, consiting of understated dark caramel malt sweetness and mild roasted grain bitterness. Subdued prune - like fruitiness. Lightly bodied and a bit thin in mouthfeel. Finishes w/ a lingering spicy hop note & biscuit malt combination akin to black pepper crackers. The finish is the most memorable aspect to this brew. An average winter ale. Thin in body, oddly tart and lacking in malt depth, yet innocuously drinkable. Tastes a lot like Coeur d'Alene Lakeside British Ale brewed with noble hops.

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Photo of jakester
3.06/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this on tap at Fiorentino's Restaurant in Lancaster. It came in a pint glass.

Arrives a very dark mahogany/brown with a one finger head of tan foam. The head quickly falls to islands and a ring, with no real lacing.

Aroma is raosted barley out the wazoo, notes of coffee, licorice, and barely there herbal hops. The roasted barley dominates, by far.

Flavor is also roasted barley, almost like a dry stout, but thinner. There is a decent level of hop bitterness, and a detectable herbal hop flavor. It's very dry and roasty, and I have to admit I'm a little surprised. There are faint dry fruits present, but they are overwhelmed by the roasted barley. Aftertaste is roasted barley (duh) and very dry.

Mouthfeel is very dry and thin bodied, with a pretty good zing from carbonation. Finish is dry and slightly astringent.

This beer just surprises the hell out of me. As a winter ale, I'm disappointed. It's just a roasted barley beer. Not much complexity, or depth of character.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This 12 oz. bottle of micro brewed seasonal with a wintry label was new to me in Georgia. The beer poured out deep reddish brown with a translucent body, and finger thick non-persistent foamy head. Sweet smell reminded me of Hershey’s cocoa and Robotussin cough syrup at the same time. The taste was a mix of unusual flavors like coffee, mint, and licorice that didn’t quite work well together. The beer also felt a little too thin on the palette, which should be a cardinal sin for a Winter Warmer. I had high hopes for this one, since it boasts a solid pedigree. Unfortunately, these hopes were not well founded. This is dark enough to last a little bit in the cellar I think. May be a few months there will cause a melding of the tastes.

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Photo of albern
3.11/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'm not sure how this beer makes it as a Red Ale, but I'll just review it on its merits. The beer pours a very dark brown, with a tannish head that dissipates pretty quickly. The lacing is spotty at best. The smell is part chocolate, part tobacco, part coffee, part caramel, with maybe a hint of perfumed sweetness. This is a medium bodied beer with only minimal carbonation. The taste is quite bland and not at all exceptional. You will get a good dose of malty chocolates, followed by some caramel, some cardboard-like mustiness, some roasted malts and caramel and coffee. There is a subtle dryness to this beer and the finish and the aftertaste are both quite mild. This one is just okay, nothing more, nothing less.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.18/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

thanks to DIM for the chance to try this brew. 151 reviews as of this posting. It's definitley winter in NH so let's see what this beer is about. Looks great, mahogany with a nice head. Smell is a roasty dark malt and cocoa note. Taste is where I fell off the bandwagon as this one seemed to me at least to be too burnt. burnt chocolate, espresso, dark malts. Mouthfeel is medium for me.

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Photo of
3.22/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a light brown in color. Medium sized tan head.

Aroma was caramel and toast. Maybe some fruit floating around in there.

Taste of biscuits, caramel. Nicely balanced by hops with a citrus/pine character.

Body was lighter than I expected, medium at best. Carbonation was fairly mild. Overall, very refreshing.

As a winter offering, very light in body and the spices seemed considerably milder than other offerings. Easy to drink, just not very exciting.

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Photo of cbl2
3.22/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

11/26/2006 $5.99 6 pack 7.00% Best before 4/7/07.


Pours an odd soda brown/orange with a thin film of tan head on top.


Roasted malt, chocolate/cocoa and a touch of coffee.


Thin mouthfeel over a chocolatey/roasted malt backbone, with some coffee notes in the background. Not very complex, but easy to drink.

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Photo of joepais
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks Dim
Bottle poured into a snifter produced a finger worth of white head that turn to lace. The body was a pitch black color on this brew.

Aromas' of roasted malts, espresso, and a little bit of chocolate fill my nose from this brew. Some sweetness come thru in the aromas as well

Flavors of bitter chocolate and coffee, some malt sweetness, hey it mimics the nose. My expectations were high for this brew but the brew really did need some spices in it. I was wishing for some seeing that it was a winter brew but alas there is none (hint, hint) a little light in the mouthfeel for a porter.

Drinkability was good I easily could drink a few of these. Still a little disappointed in the taste department, especially from such a great brewer's Winter Ale .I'd rate it as a average porter

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Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
3.24/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served cool from a 12 oz brown bottle into a Boston Lager glass.

Pours with a modest, light tan head that dissipates quickly, and leaves just a tiny bit of lacing on the glass. Dark brown and crystal clear, looks just like Pepsi.

Aroma is very nice, chocolatey and malty, a bit estery.

Flavor leaves me wanting. Not tasting any chocolate, just some toastiness, coffee, esters, slight dark fruitiness, and cola again. Strong carbonic bite in the mouthfeel, otherwise a bit thin.

Drinkabilty is quite average. A bit too fizzy to down quickly. Aroma becomes dominated by esters as it gets warmer, so try to chug it down cold. Might work better as a dinner beverage than having to stand alone here as I review it.

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Photo of jholland
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of mikereaser
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of RonfromJersey
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Orange-copper body topped by a beige foamy, bubbly head. Nose is yeasty, herbal, and... something I can't quite put a name on. Taste is caramel and toffee, some mixed fruits, and a surprisingingly large hop twang in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is a little fizzy. Drinkability is good. Overall, not a bad beer, but not much of a "winter warmer", and a bit of a disappointment coming from Stoudts. And I would not put down contract-brewer Frederick, since I preferred both their Snow Goose and Snowball's Chance this winter,

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Photo of slvrmon82
3.26/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown not a lot of light coming through. 1 finger that sticks around for a while, Chocolate and lots of roasted malts. Taste was nice and smoky with a little chocolate essence. However a little bitter at the end for a porter. Mouthfeel was nice and not as thick as I expected. It was a great winter beer but couldn't really have a lot of them.

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Stoudt's Winter Ale (2008-2009) from Stoudts Brewing Co.
3.68 out of 5 based on 186 ratings.
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