Powder Hound Winter Ale | Big Sky Brewing Company

BA SCORE
82
good
529 Ratings
THE BROS
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Powder Hound Winter AlePowder Hound Winter Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company
Montana, United States
bigskybrew.com

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Two words describe winter in our neck of the woods... cold, dark, and snowy. Just the way we like it! At 7.2% ABV, Powder Hound Winter Ale gives just the right amount of warmth, balanced by its rich taste and generous dose of Hallertau, Palisade, and Amarillo hops. After a cold day of getting it done or just relaxing, the avalanche of flavor will have you saying these four words - "I'll have another Powder Hound"!

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-13-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
529
Reviews:
259
Avg:
3.61
pDev:
12.47%
 
 
Wants:
10
Gots:
44
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 529 |  Reviews: 259
Photo of TMoney2591
3.29/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Served in a willibecher at Firkin.

Do they have skiing teams in the Big sky conference? Regardless, this stuff pours a clear amber topped by a finger-and-a-half of cream-white foam. The nose comprises very light grapefruit peel, mixed greens, light honey-dripped biscuit, and very light toffee. The taste brings in more of the same, along with more greens, a touch more sweetness for the honey and biscuit, and an added hint of grass. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, an alright, if thoroughly nondescript, little beer.

 591 characters

Photo of BMart
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of WoodBrew
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The powder hound is a beautiful beer. Poured a clear perfect amber with slighly off white head that is at least a half finger and is lacing really well. The smell is a good heavy carmal malt with tinges of spice. The initial taste was an alcohol explosion. The second taste allowed for the malt and carmel to begin to blossum. The mouthfeel is medium body with good carbonation. Overall this is a decent beer....the alcohol content is not masked as well as I would like.

 470 characters

Photo of imperialking
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of jwc215
3.92/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wasatch for including in a trade!

Pours copperish amber - nice clarity - with a thin head that becomes a wisp leaving some traces of lacing.

The smell is of nuts, caramel and a hint of minty spicing.

The taste is nutty and caramelish - towards toffeeish. A spicy hop touch balances out the sweetness in the finish.
Malt accented with a hop touch.

Medium-bodied.

Not a spiced winter brew, but a nice malty (but with a hop balance and a hint of warmth) brew. Could see how it fits with "winter", though did well on a cold, rainy spring day. Easy to drink despite hint of warmth. An enjoyable brew!

 611 characters

Photo of Hopheadjeffery
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of Tone
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, copper color. 5/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and good lacing. Smells of sweet malt, slight citrus hops, hint of floral hops, and a hint of earthy malt. Fits the style of an American Amber / Red Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, hint of pale malt, floral hops, slight citrus hops, hint of earthy malt, and a hint of caramel malt. Overall, good appearance, body, complexity, and blend.

 479 characters

Photo of krome
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.7/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Ruby color, smallish head. Aroma: plum, cherries, some dark fruits. Medium body, lingering pleasant finish, slightly sweet, and very mellow. Normally, I like my winter ales to be on the spicier side, richer and toasted, and stronger. We'll have to wait 'til Anchor Our Special comes in...not a bad beer here, though.

 316 characters

Photo of t2grogan
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of GClarkage
4.42/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11/08/04- Sampled at the Big Sky Brewery on tap.

*taken from notes in August 2004

Appearance- Pours a dark amber-chestnut color with a small head and slight lacing.

Smell- Sweet smelling carmel and malt with maybe some citrus also. Lemon?

Taste- Yummy, malty and slightly nutty sweet taste. Definitely some citrus in the background also.

Mouthfeel- Excellent carbonation. Goes down soooo easy. Smooth and creamy.

Drinkability- Extreme drinkability. Had this for the first time a couple of years ago and it was the beer I most crave from Montana. Awesome beer!

 577 characters

Photo of a77cj7
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

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

Thanks flexabull for the brew.

Pours a nice clear amber color, nice carbonation, nice little creamy tan head, nice sticky lacing afterwards, and hangs around for awhile. Nice scent of sweet malts, slight hops, and caramel. The taste is malty with a nice bitter bite in the finish. Light-Medium body. Drinkable, a nice brew from Big Sky, could drink a few of these.

 367 characters

Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.25/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

The appearance is mostly clear amber/red colored body with a one fingered white foamy head that dies within almost a minute. It manages a nice amount of foamy somewhat sticky lacing. The smell has a mostly soapy caramel nuttiness about it with a cardboard grassy note to it. The taste is mainly sweet with some caramel kinda crackery malt to it. The aftertaste is super crackery maltiness with a very dry finish. On the palate, she sits about a light to medium on the body, and comes across mostly sessionable. Carbonation comes across fairly smooth and is decent for the style and for me. Overall, not much to see here.

 620 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.46/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Smooth and crisp malt with a slight hops snap. Clear amber with a small, but lasting foamy head. Hops linger on the palate. Some elements of caramel and gingerbread, although body is not heavy. A bit richer, but not a winter warmer.

 232 characters

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.15/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A glossy brown pour, nice fluffy head that settled to a soapy layer. A bit sticky on the glass.
Malt is first with the nose. A sticky sweetness, some soft fruit and cranberry. Musky a bit, too. Hops seem to keep it dry.
Sweet malt in the mouth, mixed with figs and cranberry. Subtle hints of dark fruits like plum, maybe some banana, but very little.
Notice of a slight crisp aftertaste, malt lingers a bit.

 408 characters

Photo of tempest
3.21/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a firkin at Groveland Tap.

Came with a bit of head and lacing from the firkin, but I couldn't pull must aroma or flavor out of it, even as it warmed. Maybe some beers just aren't made to go on cask. I just got a little cocoa malt with decent hops bitterness. Felt nice and easy to drink, but I wasn't particularly inspired to drink more.

 350 characters

Photo of WesWes
4.33/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a beautiful ruby red color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice malty scent that boasts of pale, crystal, victory, and bisquit malts. It is quite toastey and breadlike. The taste is excellent. It has a sweet, yet dry and toastey flavor with a bitter breadlike finish. There are hops in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good beer. It has awesome aroma and taste; a great seasonal brew and a great drinker.

 551 characters

Photo of Whiskeydeez
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Photo of Mora2000
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a golden-orange color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the toffee with some caramel and grassy hops mixed in. The flavor is toffee and bready malt. There is a little bit of hop bitterness and a tad bit of flavor from the grassy hops, but this beer is all about the malt. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

When I opened the beer I was expecting a winter warmer. It was a surprise to see a lighter colored amber ale, but the beer was still enjoyable.

 479 characters

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

Photo of enelson
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of Gueuzedude
2.56/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours an absolutely brilliantly clear, burnt amber color. It is topped by an initially three-finger thick head that leaves some light lacing and is a pale tan color. The aroma is sweet smelling; leaning towards malt, but with some definite fruitiness as well. There seems to be some low level spiciness here as well (of the sweet baking variety). I wonder if this has spices in it, though if it does it is quite subtle. Boozy aromatics of alcohol and berry extracts combine to give this a nose similar to, though not as concentrated as, a cheap berry liquor.

The beer is fairly sweet, yet still relatively thin. It finishes with a sweet boozy beeriness that is definitely a bit off putting. A berry like fruitiness is prominent, but this seems to be stripped of all of the malt character that would lend complexity to this beer. This tastes like it is highly filtered, it is just missing a depth of character that would make it drinkable. The strong boozy character, straight forward fruit and lack of depth combined, make this beer something I don't particularly want to drink.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

 1,120 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
2.99/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

rb

12oz for about $1.30 at the Boise Coop, poured into my standard red wine glass.

Crystal clear dark amber .. red highlites when held up to the light.... good 3/4" head the drops to an off white collar with lacing that stick around to the end of the glass.

Smell is malt dominated with pit fruits.. sweet cherries and a little peach. No noticeable hops ... just toasted and bready malts ... something is missing.

Flavor is much more complex and appreciated. Malt accentuated with toasted and roasted grains .... stops well short of black grains. Fruitiness is still very prevalent .... enough bitterness to barely balance... needs more hops. Good body.. and dialed in carbonation.

Powder Hound is one of those Holiday brews I pick up every year (I have a soft spot in my heart for Montana breweries). I like all Big Sky brews, especially the special releases available at the brewery, but Powder Hound I've always though needs work .... just a little work and quite a bit more hops. I would get bored fast drinking more than 1-2 of these in a session.

 1,057 characters

Photo of Karibourgeois
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Powder Hound Winter Ale from Big Sky Brewing Company
3.61 out of 5 based on 529 ratings.
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