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

173 Reviews
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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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User Reviews
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Reviews: 173 | Ratings: 186
Photo of u2carew
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

(A) Dark allow just a tiny faint amount of light through... if you hold up to a light and tilt at an angle. Pours with a beige head which settles quickly to the outside edge.
(S) Malty notes with a touch of molasses and coffee.
(T) Gritty, mild coffee flavor with some hints of dark chocolate
(M) Not nearly as "chewy" as it looks. Light carbonation and mild to light in the body.
(D) Average. A decent porter but not a standout.

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Photo of smcolw
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Disappointing soda-pop like head. Nearly no bubbles within 30 seconds. No lace. The liquid is deep brown; light barely penetrates.

Mostly dark malt and earthy aromas. Mild hop in the background. Slightly chalky.

Light smoky chocolate malt flavor. Dark chocolate finish with hop on the side as a spice. The body is thin for the style but the flavor is so big, it would be easy to overlook.

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Photo of avalon07
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark brown color and a fairly thick consistency. There was a half inch of long-lasting, tan-colored head and good lacing.

S: Smelled predominantly of coffee, malt and a little chocolate.

T: Tasted much like the smell: Coffee, roasted malt, chocolate. A decently complex taste.

M: Had a fair amount of carbonation and a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: On the whole, this is a drinkable, well-made beer that goes down easy.

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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 cvstrickland
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

When poured into a dimpled imperial pint seidel, the 12-ounce bottle yields an inky oiled-walnut body trimmed with a dull twinkle of bronze at the periphery, topped with a thin cap of creamy beige foam. Resting at a chunky-bubbled ring, the head deposits only minimal fine-bubbled wisps of lacing onto the glass.

A note of rich dark roast and savory chocolate punctuates the malty nose, highlighting a mild fruitiness that defies solid definition. An expanding bitter coffee note emerges to mark the warming of the drink.

The taste is loaded with sticky notes of toasted, biscuity malts and strong black coffee with a dash of sweetened cream. The roasted character provides a solid, but mellow bitterness that lingers far into the finish and beyond, even as touch of dark cocoa grows in boldness and stature as the drink goes on.

The drink is pretty light in body and the sizzle of carbonation is just right. The beer is refreshing and highly drinkable, and the lighter porter style offers a fine alternative to many other "Winter" beers with all their stickiness, hot booze, and over-the-top spicing.

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Photo of far333
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark chestnut colored with streaks of garnet at the base of the glass. A half inch of light brown thick foamy head sites atop and leaves legs of lace running around the glass.

Aroma of cocoa and roasted malts, some marshmallow and smoke.

Deep and rich flavor of darkly roasted malt, milk chocolate, charred oak, molasses and sharp currant. Burnt espresso and licorice lingers. Very complex.

Rich, full, and creamy mouthfeel, a bit powdery and tannic in the finish. Very drinkable, nice porter.

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Photo of philbe311
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Two fingers of light tan fluffy head with some big chunky bubbles mixed-in... Jet black... Opaque... Great head retention... Coats glass extremely well...

S - Sweet... Cocoa... Roasted Malts... Chocolate... Coffee... Licorice... Black Cherries...

T - Burnt... Roasted Malt... Bitter baker's chocolate... Straight forward and solid, but not much complexity... A slight smokiness was noted on the finish...

M - Medium bodied... Slightly creamy... A tad thin... A little on the dry side...

D - I like the idea of a Porter as a seasonal winter brew... Enjoyable and respectable... However, an average American Porter...

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Photo of nrbw23
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a black color with just a cream colored layer of bubbles. Pretty much no lacing and bubbles stay on the edge of the glass through out the tasting.

S- Roasted malts, touch of fruits, chocolate and coffee.

T- Pretty much follows the nose here.

M- A tad high on carbonation, medium in body but yet still felt a little thin or watery.

D- Not too bad I've just had better.

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Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fresh bottle from Consumer Warehouse, Cleveland. Syrupy chocolately porter with no head to speak of on an opaque dark brown body. Above average carbonation. Drinkable, on the sweet side.Medium mouthfeel. Some roasted malt as well in the secondary.Chocolate aroma.

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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 sonicdescent
4.45/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A=anyone that follows my reviews knows I have a hard on for dark beers and this is no exception. Dark color and creamy head with a pretty lace.

S=malty fruit and chocolate, slight coffee

T= see smell, no fooling here

M= like a good porter should, only if slightly over carbonated.

D= drinkable and cheap enough to be dangerous. I'd get it again in a heartbeat.

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Photo of HeyItsChili
3.92/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours dark brown with a thin, fleeting dark tan head.

S - Smells of roasted malts, a little chocolaty.

T - Tastes like coffee, sweet roasted malt, and bittersweet dark chocolate.

M - The carbonation seems high for a beer that otherwise seems to fit the definition of a stout, but it's a porter so I guess it can get away with it. Did that make any sense? I don't know.

D - Tasty. A solidly good beer.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled off the tap at the American Flatbread/Vermont debut of the brewery this beer was an opaque black color. The head was tan, retained fairly well and laced in sheets. The aroma was subtle, dry and grainy with roasted malt and hints of milk chocolate being the dominant notes. The flavors were of big chocolate, light coffee, dry grain and a light fruitiness. The mouthfeel was creamy, the carbonation perfect and the body medium full. Enjoyable!

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Photo of EPICAC
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep black with garnet tints. Topped by a brown head that fades to a film. Roasty coffee, rich chocolate, and a bit of dried fruit in the aroma. A bit of citric, hop aroma is evident. Swirling brings out more chocolate.

Attenuated, roasted malts upfront with a tinge of chocolate sweetness. Dark fruit has a minor appearance in the center followed by a roasty and hoppy bitterness in the finish. Light to medium-bodied, moderate carbonation with a warming spice.

Nice on a cold day like today.

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Photo of Deuane
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Deep dark brown with lighter edges. A medium light tan head reduces to a thin cap and leaves decent lace.

S-Light cocoa, some coffee, a bit of licorice and roasted grains.

T-Light chocolate and toffee and some licorice. Nice roasted malt flavours come through after the initial wave. A tasty mix of flavours. Pronounced cocoa/licorice bitterness comes through upon warming.

M-Medium-light and a tad on the thin side. Would like to have a bit more body to support the taste profile. Good lasting cocoa/hop bitterness.

D-Good stuff. I am not sure of the American Porter designation but that isn't something that Stoudt's did. These winter ales cross the lines of so many styles it is hard to pigeon hole them. Nonetheless this is a rather light, in feel and ABV, but tasty winter brew that desrves some attention.

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Photo of Brad007
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black color with a two-finger brown head that fades and leaves some lacing in my glass.

Aroma is strong with hints of chocolate, dark fruit and roast coffee in the nose.

Taste is smooth with the taste of roasted coffee and chocolate upfront, followed by just a bit of creaminess.

Mouthfeel is full of chocolate and the bitter coffee flavors. Carbonation is a bit high but otherwise, goes down well.

A good example of a porter. The aroma was strong and the taste was flavorful and enjoyable.

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Photo of Bung
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A black/amber pour with some nice dark white foam. Nice roast malt and mocha coffee aromas. Flavor is rather strong for such a light abv. Very roasty malt, coffee and nut. Some mocha/cocoa coming through also. Very clean finishing with some nice hops, almost like some dry hopping occurred. This is a worthwhile and sessionable seasonal. Enjoyable for those that don't like the sweet spices of the typical winter ale.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.74/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Kinda funny.. For the past month or so I've been buying 6 packs upon 6 packs of mixed winter seasonals and this is the first porter I've gotten to.. you'd think this would be the most prevalent style but I guess not?

Either way, I'm not sure if it's because I haven't had a good porter in a while or what, but this is damn tasty. A nice dark red color with a light brown head (man, I love that color). Nice and nutty/malty taste that has a fantastic mouthfeel and is incredibly smooth. Great beer.. great beer.

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Photo of Dodo2step
3.32/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

P- market Cross Pub in Carlisle

A- pours a midnight black color with a tan head. Lacing isnt too much but it is scattered. Not much foam either. opaque and creamy looking.

S- a roasted coffee aroma. Some dark candied fruits come to the nose but very faint. Smell isnt that aromatic.

T- maltiness is first and then the coffee comes out after a few sips. sweet like molasses yet very dry after the swallow.

M- creamy and chewy. like a warm chocolate chip cookie. Smooth as well.

D- not a bad beer but the maltiness and the hops dont mix too well. One of these was enough for me.

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Photo of CHADMC3
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This winter ale pours a deep cola brown with faint hints of ruby hue coming through the bottom of the glass. A plump tan head erupts from the body leaving a generous sticky lacing.

Aroma is that of deep roasted malt, various spices such as nutmeg and cinnamon, and even burnt hops upon a second inspection.

I found this beer to be a little smokey but primary flavors consisted of chocolate and espresso with a pleasant hop presence on the back of the palate.

Medium body and carbonation make this beer easy to drink, and quite indulgent after considering its pleasant flavor balance.

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Photo of Finkel
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured out, it was almost totally black with a small light tan head. Nothing complex or wrong - it looked pretty nice.

Unfortunately, the smell was very weak. Glimpses of malt as well as a slight coffee scent were noticeable. All other flavors were indistinct which made the overall smell kind of plain.

The taste was alright, though I'm not too into this style. It was malty with roasted coffee but weak enough to not deter those who don't enjoy roasted flavors (myself included). Furthermore, it was completely hopless, which was a bummer to me.

The mouth feel was noticeably thin, which was disappointing. I was hoping that there would be some creaminess with this beer, but found nothing, even when agitated in my mouth.

I didn't find it to be extremely drinkable, but that's because this isn't really my style of beer. I would imagine that if you like porters, then it would nice to drink. I rationalized that this was a thicker brew make thin, so I figure it would make it drinkable in sense of getting a few down.

Not my type of beer, but you can't win 'em all.

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Photo of crashoveride
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased a bottle from Capones in Norristown,PA last week and cracked it open last night. It poured a dark brown almost black with a small tan head that continued to last through til the last drop. The smell was great like hints of cinnamon and brown sugar to warm you up on a cold winters night. The taste was just as good as it smells with more hints of a nutty malty flavor. For being such a dark ale the drink ability was very easy to drink with a nutty after taste. This beer is a must try .

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Photo of DIM
4.18/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: This was a very dark brown, bordering on black. It was served to me with a thin tan head.

s: I got some mild cocoa and a little sweet brown sugar maltiness.

t: Wow, this is very different than last years, I like this one a lot more. I got some cinnamon or nutmeg spiciness and lots of cocoa on the finish, which was quite dry. Up front this had a lactic quality, like a milk stout.

m: Gently carbonated, with a surprisingly creamy body. This years feels bigger than 5.50% abv.

d: This years version is a hit with me, I just hope they put in on cask at some point.

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Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Quentin Tavern.

A: The ale is a dark licorice color, forboding with a 2 plus finger off-white head. The head didn't last long, leaving a faint trail of lace.

S: The nose is rich, full of dark fruits, brown sugar, anise and roasted grains.

T: The ale is very malty, thick and grainy with a sizeable spice profile. Licorise is dominant. The flavor is not concentrated anise, rather the flavor is firm but not overwhelming. Caramel, chocolate and toffee mix with cocoa and some citrus hops. The complexity of the flavor is a big draw for this beer.

M: The mouthfeel is full, loaded with a great deal of flavor. The ale isn't heavy even though you'd expect it to be.

D: I'd gladly have a few rounds of this, nice flavor profile.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 12 oz bottle poured into my mug. This beer pours a dark amber brown color. The tan head is about 1/2 inch when poured, eventually settling to thin white ring lining the inside of the glass. Not too much lacing here either. Aromas of chocolate malt. The cocoa sure is there, but not much else that this nose can detect. Nice, sweet roasted malt flavor with a strong hint of chocolate, a trace of coffee and a bit of caramel, rounded out with a very subtle hint of hops. A very good beer overall/ has a crisp, and smooth, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate to heavy carbonation. Quite easy to drink in a good way. Worth a try at least.


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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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