BiFrost | Elysian Brewing Company

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Brewed by:
Elysian Brewing Company
Washington, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by PhantomVodoo on 11-25-2003

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Reviews: 200 | Ratings: 504
Photo of SamQ
5/5  rDev +34%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

5/5. A truly remarkable beer. Outstanding amber-gold coloration with an unbelievably smooth, rich taste. I bought a 6 pack for a weekend beer, and was just star-struck by every aspect of this beer. Even the label is on-point. You can't go wrong with Elysian Bifrost Winter Ale. The only downside to this masterpiece is the fact that it probably is only available regionally. If you ever find yourself in the pacific northwest during the season, do yourself a favor and give this beer a whirl.

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Photo of Berndt
4.95/5  rDev +32.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Elysian BiFrost - 3/3/2013 - bottle 22oz - bottle conditioned

Aroma - Citrusy American hops - big hop aroma.

Appearance - Light orange, white head

Taste - Full hop flavor - wonderful bitterness, a bit of caramel in aftertaste

Mouthfeel - Moderate carbonation, light-medium body

Overall - I've had this hoppy winter warmer before, and thought it was fine, but this year's version was amazing. A lighter colored counterpart to Sierra Nevada Celebration, emphasizing the hops. My favorite winter warmer this past season.

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Photo of TAREUA
4.85/5  rDev +30%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured the golden color of a cloud just before the sun burns it off. Not the normal dark caramel color of most PNW winter beers.

I don't remember much about the foam since my eyes were closed and my nose was in it. A pretty much perfect aroma for me: it tells you what is coming and yet seems complete all in itself. Hoppy, but not the overblown (to me) eucolyptus and piny hops. There is malt in the nose and balance of bitter and sweet. It smells of beer heaven, not of a gimick, a distillery, a wood barrel, or a shopping list of chemical ingrediants.

The taste is a lovely mixing of richness, bitter, and honey. Like the crust of french bread dabbed with butter and fresh honey. A beer that felt like it was built just for me.

Elysian has become one of my favorite breweries. I wish they would do six packs, I can't always squeeze in the time for a bomber. Sadly.

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Photo of Stoutmaster9
4.66/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Honey-colored (or lighter side of Ochre yellow) with big, slow bubbles, and a medium, willowy head that shrinks but quick.
A simple yet superb malty sweetness.
Taste follows the nose, with a brief, slight booze burn on the mouth's roof. After a few gulps the bubbles begin to pop, crisp and sour, but not sharp. Bold. Tastes stronger than the 8.3%.

Have not had this style in some time. Refreshing, strong, simple. Not the last bottle I will be picking up!

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Photo of wumpshire
4.6/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Wow, what a great winter warmer. Tastes like apricots, brandy, yet not boozy. A session barley wine (oxymoron)? I finally found a strong beer my wife likes!

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Photo of warriorsoul
4.58/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to skyhand for this special treat...
Honey amber in color...a hefty dose of white head and attractive lacing as it recedes.
Subdued in the aroma, some sweet caramel malt and a hint of citrus.
Taste is one of the best I've ever savored...sickly balanced with sweet malt and a hoppiness that you would typically find in most IPA's. As true to the style, the bitterness takes a back seat to the malty sweetness...citrus (mainly oranges), honey, and subtle spice in the finish.
Mouthfeel was full bodied...thick without getting syrupy.
Carbonation was just right and the drinkability was thru the roof.
Easily, one of the most impressive limited offerings I've had recently...certainly not your "typical" winter warmer, but was perfect for me.

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Photo of dragonWhale
4.52/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ahh, dear Elysian..I miss these nights we used to spend together.
The Bifrost is an angelic creature, mightily ringed like Saturn, and orange like its glower. It appears the recipe has changed from centennial to simcoe bittering (according to their menu) and the smoothness of the bitterness I would attribute to this alteration. Bristle and pine, slight earthy spice and floral. Big aromas but I'm not getting much citrus, a hint perhaps. The finish is amarillo and styr goldings. A little bit of sweet bread. Tastes like these hops are licking your teeth, nice bitterness, but very sticky and very delicious. Dangerous folks over there, crafting this beast.

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Photo of Johnny_Muir
4.51/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle given to me as a gift for cat sitting for a week. Worth it! I drank this thing down in less time than it took to walk home (15 mins). Just couldnt stop sipping it. By far one of the best overall beers Ive tried, winter or otherwise. Cheers!

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Photo of tavernjef
4.47/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hazey pale orange with a very thin cap of off-white foam. Lots of lacing in thick webby sheeting coats the glass.

Aroma is thick and fairly full of broad intensity from a big load of juicy, citrusy hops and caramel covered bread dough.

Taste is just as broad, lacking some fullness until the finish where it gets a bit more complex and thick. Citrus stays the course from start to finish with bittering tangerine skins and blended dark orange flavors. Quite nice really. The malts stay in the back, the way back, with a pale malt dryness and some doughy sweetness. Keeps a tilted balance as the hops are heavy on the flavors and character leaving the malts behind to do just a little bit of placement along the way. Quite orangey. My tongue is getting a work out. Whew...

Feel is abourt medium with a heavy citrus carry-on of orange flavored luggage that provides extra heft to the overall payload. A bit of warm and rough hoppy citric skin and pithy texture finds its way once you get into it. Gets SO much more vigorous as it warms my head is swimming with sillyness now.

Mucho yummy stuff. Must find book, toolie, toolie, orange sky is beautiful, yum-yum...huh...

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Photo of MtVernon
4.45/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I haven't felt compelled to review a beer on here in a while, and I've actually been drinking somewhat rarely lately, but tonight being a special occasion, I thought I'd pick one of these up. Boy, am I glad I did!

This ale looks and smells quite good... lacing is moderate, but sticky. Smell is of piney, citrusy, and earthy hops. The taste! Oh my God, the TASTE! Highest rating! Being that smell is a large part of taste, I can't say much more than that they go together PERFECTLY, but the initial whiff does not foreshadow what the tongue is in for: beer bliss. Seriously. Wow. This is a keeper! I'm not going to attempt to describe it, other than it's an ideal balance between malt and hop characteristics with NO trace of chemical nastiness--and, the alcohol is almost completely masked.

The mouthfeel is smooth, clingy, oily, makes you want to swish it around a little before swallowing... it's just heavenly. Only some of the high dollar Belgians can top this, and then, only barely.

I'm quite convinced this is Elysian's best offering so far, and I've tried them all. I live in Seattle, so that's pretty easy! They're always fresh at my local Metropolitan Market, and usually on sale. This is my "work week is finally over" treat.

This time, was it ever!

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Photo of russpowell
4.4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Been dying to try this brewery's offerings:

Pours an effervescent bronze/amber with 1+ finger of sand colored head, plus slight hazing. Good lacing & very good head retention

S: Breadyness, honey & citric, plus herbal hops

T: Huge cakeyness, lemony & herbal hops, vanilla, & honey up front. Grapefruit, piney & lemon hops continue as this warms, along with honey, & toffee. finishes dry, with leafy, herbal & grapefruitty hops, caramel, a bit of brown sugar, & warming booze; great taste!

MF: Chewy with minimal carbonation, some serious hoppyness that works, superior balance

Drinks a bit slow, due to complexity, but this is one damn fine winter warmer or DIPA! I'll certainly check out other brews from Elysian!

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.36/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to skyhand for sending me this wonderful brew.
The review will be a bit skewed because I'm just getting over a cold and was going to pass on reviewing it, but since it is most likely the only one I will ever drink and since it is EXCELLENT, I have to say something.
Pours a light golden crystal clear yellow with a massive white head that lasts, lasts, lasts, and lasts leaving a sticky thick lacing all over the glass as you drink.
Aromas (forgive my cold) are primarily warm with soft hints of winter spices.
Taste is sweet light malt followed with a wonderful complex mixture of citrus and piney hops. Mouthfeel is tingly from the carbonation and hops and thick and slick from the sweet malt.
Aftertaste is primarily the citrus peel hops with a nice drying.
This is a beautiful beer...a wonderful beer...and more a winter IPA than a winter warmer and I love it for that.

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Photo of BuckeyeOne
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy orange with a puffy white head that left a good amount of lace down the glass.

Smelled of high mountain meadow wildflowers and orange rind. Not pungent, but rather subtle.

The flavor was more distinct and didn't necessarily follow the smell. While the floral hops and the orange was there, the taste is more spicy and citrus hops. Wonderful flavor, actually. This is not the typical sweet and nutmeg winter warmer. This is more like a hoppy pale ale, bordering on an IPA. I think it's mislabeled as a winter warmer.

The mouthfeel is luscious. Oily and medium-bodied. Just the right amount of carbonation.

This is a crisp and flavorful brew and the alcohol is very well masked. I could drink many of these.

NOTE: This is one of the first craft brews that I fell in love with a number of years ago. I always look forward to this release. And I always think that, as I expand my craft brew palate, I'll come to like this less. It's never been true. This is a great beer. Elysian! Well done.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 3/4" off-white head above the light amber brew. Head is doughy and hangs around, with sticky lacing. Aroma is pleasantly of piney hops, a nice change for me from some of the over-spiced brews that end up in this style. Taste is light yet ample maltiness up front, quickly overtaken by the aforementioned piney hops character, which segues ever so gently into the slightest spicing at the close. Alcohol warming sneaks up on you. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both excellent. A great NW interpretation of a style that isn't always my favorite, I must admit. Find this one, it's worth the effort.

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Photo of Hollenbeck2
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

excellent winter brew, not too bitter or strong, but so so so tasty, this is yet another exclamation point of a great beer for this fine micro brewery out of seattle, this place continues to produce some of the best beer in the northwest and this big guy is awesome, I had this beer in a 22 ounce bottle and cried when it was gone, I want more!

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Photo of ElGordo
4.33/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 22oz bottle in to a pint glass. Body is a bright golden hue with a huge, sligthtly creamy, stark white head that leaves some beautiful lacing on the glass. Aroma of piney hops and sweet pale malt, with a nice whiff of alcohol thrown in for good measure. Palate is nicely balaced between pale malt and piney hops, with light fruity notes lingering in the background and a touch of mustiness from the yeast. Finish is nice and clean, with just a little bit of warming from the alcohol. Body is smooth and just a tad sticky, a very good consistency for this type of ale. I think I'm going to be drinking a lot of this until it goes away for the season.

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Photo of marcellaproust
4.32/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an unusual and delicious beer. I thought it'd be rated more highly than 85. It was difficult to pinpoint, because it's not exactly what I'd call a winter ale, nor is it a golden ale like Leffe, but it does bring those to mind. After writing up my notes, I had to peek at top reviewers and I saw one which mentioned "cardamom." Rats--exactly what I'd been tasting and could just not pinpoint myself. Well, I'll add "anise" to that, the two of which will account for the unanticipated spice notes. Appearance and pour: 1/4 beady head with hazy golden, tan color. Very pleasing nose of chamomile flowers and cinna-mint (cinnamint sans gum flavor). Body: full although that is cut and masked by very active carbonation and a dry finish. Starts peppery, mid way smooth, lacto and barley drive-bys but zero yeasty bready Belgian aleness. Finish again peppery, spiced, spiked, dry. This is an interesting winter beer, and I'm sorry its uniqueness initiate a 'categorical error' in those who've found it wanting.

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Photo of freed
4.32/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was on tap at OBF06. I know... in the summer!

Pours a cloudy amber with a poofy white cap. Low but active carbonation.

Aroma is pleasantly warm and spicy. Mulled cider, orange, cinnamon and clove.

Taste is robust in it's malts - chewy browns compliment the addition of spices and a warming alcoholic sensation. Finishes with a dry palate.

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Photo of Amalak
4.29/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- I don't like to give 5's, but out of a bottle this had a gorgeous orange, rust color, opaque with excellent head and lace. It's a good looking beer.
S- Slight citrus scent to it.
T- Almost an apricot taste, or some sort of fruit. Slight spice in the back of the mouth.

Very smooth. Thick fruitiness. Thick taste.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.29/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The annual summer break redding up of the living room was happening in earnest this afternoon when I came upon a plastic bag containing a six-pack carrier that included this beer. Wow!

From the bottle: "Bifrost is our lively winter brew, a bold pale ale with citrus and earthy hop character balanced by a smooth malt backbone."

I went with an aggro pour as the result of my excitement and created two fingers of dense, tawny head with good retention. As it slowly fell, it left some great sticky lacing in its wake. Color was a deep-amber with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled strongly of both minty hops and caramel malts, much like some AIPAs that I have had of late. Mouthfeel was medium and the taste reminded me more of a young ABW between the preponderance of biting, minty hops and sweet caramel malt. I may try to remember to buy an extra bottle for cellaring next year as the result of tonight's exercise. Finish was semi-dry with the malt providing just enough of a counterbalance to keep it reasonable. Man, this was quite the find!

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Photo of jkdrummer
4.28/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a wonderfully thick creamy head and never quits. Aroma is yeasty with a nose full of malts. Taste is very creamy and a very nice bite of the Golding hops. Almost like a cream ale but oh so much better. A hint of alcohol in the aftertaste. Highly recommended. Reviewed the 2008 version.

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Photo of Briken
4.28/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Hazy orange amber with medium tan frothy head with good retention and lacing. fragrant Orange and lemon aroma. Satsuma and candy sweetness with a balanced bittering and a sweet orange and light bitter linger. Moderate mouthfeel with good carbonation.

A surprising and clear dichotomy of sweetness upfront and bitter linger. Flavors are clear and bright, not what I expect in a winter ale as it has an almost springtime feel to it but it's just malty enough to keep you from shivering in the cold. It's also not what I would like in a winter warmer but this is just fantastic, simple yet well done.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Gingerman in NYC...
Dark, auburn hue... Minimal head, minor lacing, slight carbonation evident...
Sweet, enticing malt-loaded smell... Nuances of honey, roasted grains noticeable on the tongue... Candied sugars, thick malts, cinnamon,cloves...
Creamy, rich mouthfeel...
Delicious stuff...

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Photo of gdfan47
4.23/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

wow glad I checked this one out

it pours a great off yellow orangey color with a long froathy whitesh head that def hangs out a bit

it smells like hops and a few other spicy

it tastes really refreshing, hard to taste the extra alcohol, but I like it

havent had to many winter warmers, just kinda dipping my feel into some darker/ winterier beers and I like this one, it kinda reminds me of Bells winter white, just with more hops and with its own personality

check it out, I have been hearing alot about
Elysian, Im glad I finally tryed them

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.2/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The wife greeted me after a long workday with the BiFrost.. She picked it up at the COOP... Poured into my Old Guardian goblet...

3/4" white head... The brew is a very clear orange.. pretty exceptional long lasting lacing.

This is the first "winter warmer" that I've had in a long while that had a nice mix of malts and hops... it shows big boned toasty malts with a good citrus undertone...

Flavor is very very fresh... I love the toasty maltiness... there is a very balanced hop bitterness.. the hops are seemingly earthy/floral with some citrus bite toward the finish.. the malts are very balanced... a bit astringent on the end.

Body is medium .. with medium carbonation.. This is a pretty well made brew. I almost "never" would place beers in the winter warmer category, but this one really nails it. No spice, no pine, no juniper, just plain ole American xmas fun... well made!!

Everything about this bottle is slow growing... take your time..

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BiFrost from Elysian Brewing Company
3.73 out of 5 based on 504 ratings.
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