Great Lakes Christmas Ale | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
88
very good
3,071 Ratings
Great Lakes Christmas AleGreat Lakes Christmas Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States
greatlakesbrewing.com

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by OldFrothingSlosh on 11-16-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,071
Reviews:
880
Avg:
3.91
pDev:
13.04%
 
 
Wants:
154
Gots:
778
For Trade:
10
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,071 |  Reviews: 880
Photo of Gregf51
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of martyl1000
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Side Door, Madison. A quality spiced winter warmer, though too sweet for me.

86 characters

Photo of JNForsyth
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Kendo
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Poured from the bottle into a Corsendonk Christmas glass. Body is clear reddish-brown with no head whatsoever.

S: Not much of a nose; mild malt with a touch of fruit and spice.

T: Nice, but nothing earth-shattering. Brown bread, fruit (think cherries or berries) and a hint of spice (both cinnamon & ginger come to mind at different times). Finishes with a bit of lingering sweetness, though it's not cloying at all. The 7.5% ABV is well-hidden, though felt in the belly as warmth.

M: Medium in heft, a wee bit sticky.

O: Good stuff. An easy-to-drink winter warmer. Reminds me subtly of gingerbread cookies.

 614 characters

Photo of gford217
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle courtesy of Tifore..

Pours a deep amber that shows through clear in the light. The head is frothy, beige and shows excellent retention and lacing.

Aroma is seriously spicy with lots of cinnamon, ginger and allspice. Light caramel malts and chocolate in the background.

Taste is sweeter with the caramel malts and chocolate up front. The spices are still present but more subtle and more prevalent in the finish. Mainly some cinnamon and nutmeg.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied, dry and slightly spicy.

This is a top notch winter warmer with a spice-heavy nose that moderates in the taste with more sweetness. Well balanced and drinkable.

 653 characters

Photo of ToddT
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Copper color liquid topped with a thick khaki colored head. Head lasts for quite some time and leaves lots of lace on the glass.

S- Spice, hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, sweet caramel, and malt as well.

T- Nice mix of spice at first cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg are all present. Mild honey notes and toffee make an appearance about halfway through and lead to the sweet semi dry finish.

M- Medium in body and carbonation, little bit of sweetness starts to build up in the back of the throat just past the halfway point of the glass.

O- Nice winter warmer, nothing too memorable, but not not one to turn down either. The 7.5% ABV is well hidden, it was the sweetness made this a sipper for me not the ABV.

 709 characters

Photo of bobv
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of kmpitz2
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer came a nice rubyed folden color with a finger of head that slowly receded from the beer. The nose was slightly cherry, with caramel and spices dancing around in the background. The flavor was pretty full on the spices, with the caramel playing more of a background role in this one. There were hints of a cherry flavor in there as well, but very far in the background. The feel was just shy of moderate. Overall this was a nice beer. I'm not a big fan of the winter warmers with spices added, but this was a solid beer.

 529 characters

Photo of alkemy
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark copper color. I get the nutmeg, but the ginger is pretty faint to me. Maybe I'm just used to that "in your face" sushi ginger. I really didn't get much cinnamon in the nose. I did get the sweet, toasty malt. Roasted sweet malt and nutmeg dominated the flavor for me. I then got a hint of honey and cinnamon. The cinnamon is more of a cinnamon/sugar mixture like you'd put on toast. This is pretty good stuff, but I'd rather have them brew Nosferatu in a little more abundance...I've exhausted my local connection for the year!

 531 characters

Photo of myouman
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of trevorreg
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of TrojanRB
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Andyrectenwald
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Great seasonal beer. A good six pack of go-to beers.

52 characters

Photo of EXScotT
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of dannycohen62
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L - burnt orange, quickly dissipating head
S - honey, perfume-like notes of cinnamon, candied apple, caramel,
T - biscuity, caramel, dark honey, a touch of cinnamon, gingerbread
F - low carbonation, smooth, relatively thin mouthfeel
O - on the sweeter side, this beer is incredible fresh but quickly loses its magic - they call it a Christmas Ale, but drink it by Thanksgiving

 377 characters

Photo of Budlum
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Boca-X
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ManapuaMan
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Stevedore
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, drink by 2/5/2015. Poured into a snifter 12/2/2014.

A- Clear, dark caramel-brown body, one finger white head with low retention time. Eventually becomes a thick collar with a thin film forming on top. Not much lacing. [3.75]

S- Christmas spices, as advertised. Cloves. Ginger. Toffee, caramel sweetness rounds it out. Yeasty minerals. Clean aroma. [4]

F- Cloves, ginger, yeast, herbs, a bit of sage. Balanced out by a nice toffee backbone that provides a nice sweetness to the beer. Finish is herbal and mineral in character. Not particularly bitter. Nice balance of malt and spices, here. [4]

M- Medium bodied, on the thinner side which is just about right. A nice drinking beer, especially for a cooler night. Definitely will keep ya warm. No heat, but very easy to drink. [4]

O- Tasty winter warmer that doesn't overdo the spices. It does everything it needs to do and then some without overdoing it. I expect that of just about every GLBC beer I open, and they have never disappointed. [4]

Final score: 3.99

 1,030 characters

Photo of IckyT2012
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of cozmo
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of emyers
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Great Lakes snifter.

Appearance: Pours a deep amber with a thin off-white head. Not much head retention.

Smell: Biscuits, caramel, and honey up front. Cinnamon comes throough, nicely balanced with the malt bill. I don't get much of the ginger.

Taste: Honey and caramel/toffee up front. Spices are one again perfectly balanced, not overpowering like many Christmas ales. Finish is a bit sweet, possibly due to the honey (akthough I would think it would have fermented out).

Mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation. Smooth.

Overall: This beer gets a ton of hype, but it's well-deserved. Definitely one of the better Christmas ales out there. Well balanced and maintains a solid spice presence without turning into a spice bomb.

 762 characters

Photo of sanitarium16
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of OhioBobcat
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of sabitu
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Great Lakes Christmas Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
3.91 out of 5 based on 3,071 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Learn More