CB's Christmas Ale | CB Craft Brewers

28 Ratings
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CB's Christmas AleCB's Christmas Ale

Brewed by:
CB Craft Brewers
New York, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by John on 12-16-2002

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 28 |  Reviews: 15
Photo of Stignacious
3.44/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Ctoastcrunch
4.01/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A very drinkable Christmas ale. It avoids the Christmas beer trap of overwhelming Christmas flavors, which is much appreciated for this beer. It is a gorgeous beer when poured, with a deep amber and a head that eventually disappears to laciness. I would definitely recommend it as a good example of the style to have at holiday parties.

 336 characters

Photo of sharp315
2.8/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of logicalparadox
3.39/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of TheBeerdedCharmer
3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DuffMan23
2.32/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got at timmy g's looked good. Taste awful

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Photo of SonictheBeerhog
3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of poohbearzeccola
3.84/5  rDev +7.3%

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.55/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a deep golden amber color with a one finger head of white. The head fades very fast leaving a trace level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is heaviest of a caramel and malty smell mixed with lighter notes of a roasted malt and a moderate showing of some spice aromas of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Some lighter smells of a toasted nut and a little bit of toffee are there as well producing the relatively standard “holiday brew” aroma overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a thick and bready toasted malt taste with a rather strong showing of toffee and caramel. As the taste advances the spices that were detected in the nose starts coming to the tongue and with these tastes comes a slight buttering of the flavor with the caramel taking on a slightly more butterscotch flavor. All the while the roastedness gets enhanced a bit and a light nutty taste and a bit of a boozy flavor join the flavor profile as well. In the end the mix of flavors ends up leaving a nicely spiced warming flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the thicker and creamier side with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. Both are nice for the toasted and sweet flavors of the brew all while really helping create a thicker and chewier base for the nice warming malty flavor.

Overall – A fairly nice Christmas brew overall with a good showing of spice, sweet malts and a nice warming touch. Not bad.

 1,532 characters

Photo of tdm168
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.75/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of ZekemusMaximus
2.5/5  rDev -30.2%

Photo of spark3148857
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of GreatBloomer
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of TheBrewo
3.35/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This was served from the tap at The Inn on the Lake in Canandaigua, NY. The beers arrived in standard pint glasses and showed the color of rusted copper. There was a one finger head produced, and this was soft and airy. The recession was slow, and the café colored bubbles left sticky lacing around the glass. Carbonation appeared medium, and no sediment was noted. The aroma was clean, with spice of clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon. The grains came off as metallic, with a light burnt caramel and nutty toast to them. Baker’s yeast was also noted, with additions from melon fruitiness, and a very faint citric hop profile. As we sipped, the taste began with light toasted malts, which seemed a bit adjuncty. There was fruity sweetness, but this was superficial. The middle moved on with spicy hops, but these were far on the back. Strawberry sweetness, and a cleaner, but sloppy melon flavoring came in much stronger. Grain, too, was gritty around the edges. The finish was with more metallics and toast, but the malts came in deeper here, and more robustly. The aftertaste breathed of cherry, metals, the deeper malts from the finish, and mild woodiness. The body was thin to medium, and the carbonation was average. The feel was actually quite watered down, but to the palate the liquid was cleanly drying. There was little slurp or cream to the sip. The abv was appropriate and the beer drank easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the melon sweetness showcased in both the aroma and the taste. The beer is nice in the end, but it seems watered down, and at times the flavors were muddled and discohesive. The rest of the flavoring escaped somewhere, leaving a metallic, malty shell with little else to support it.

 1,737 characters

Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of MrDanno96
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Distillery.

A: Pours a brownish amber color with about a finger of off-white head. Retention wasn't great. Lots of sticky lacing.

S: Not a ton here. Roasted malts and some sweet spices, cinnamon and nutmeg.

T: I was pleasantly surprised here after the nose. Burnt malts balance nicely with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice. A nice seasonal flavor.

M: Light bodied with a lot of carbonation. Not bad, but I would have liked a more medium body.

D: A solid seasonal offering. I could use a little more in the nose, but I was overall pleased with this brew. I would have it again.

 605 characters

Photo of deruiz10
3.63/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On-tap into a pint glass.

A - Minimal head leaves no lacing. Reddish-brown pour, moderate clarity.

S - Mild sweet hops, oats, biscuits.

T - Grassy malts, oatmeal, honey, snickerdoodles? No hops to speak of.

M - Slightly light, could use more carbonation, but smooth nonetheless.

D - Lively. Not particularly complex, but reminds you of a Christmas-night meal.

 364 characters

Photo of dogfishandi
3.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

i had this on tap at a irish bar in hamburg, ny called JP fitzgeralds. they didnt have very many craft beers on tap so when i asked the bartender what the christmas ale was, i was quite surprised to find out it was from a real small time brewery near canadaigua. this one poured a nice rich brown color with a nice head that faded quickly to a foam ring. decent amount of lacing. the smell was full of chocolate, but not a chocolate malt aroma, it was like milk chocolate, like i was smelling a hersey's bar. a tiny bit of spice in the nose as well. the taste was great, it was full of milk chocolate. there was some caramel from the malts, as well as a tiny bit of bitterness from the hops. a little spice present too. it was medium to light bodied. this is the only beer i tried from CB's so i dont know really how good this brewery is, but i really enjoyed this X-mas ale. this is a great beer, but almost impossible to find.

 928 characters

Photo of wiseguy142
3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A hard pour leaves a nice rocky head with good retention and lacing around the lip of the glass. Brilliantly clear with little visible carbonation and a dark copper to light brown color. Aroma is mostly grains/malt with little balance from hops and a slight astringent background aroma, but not that noticeable. I sampled this first and the huge blast of Munich malt definitely caught my eye. This has a very complex malty taste with the general sweetness you find in all of Custom Brewcrafters' beers. There's also a little roasted malt flavor lingering in the back which brings out some of the toffee like flavors and sweetness very nicely. This is probably one of the better CB beers I've had. I think a lot of people point out that they have the same sort of background flavor for a lot of their beers and then just mess around with the styles. I'm not sure if this is good or bad, but the beers are definitely drinkable nonetheless.

 937 characters

Photo of kbnooshay
4.07/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a pretty brown amber with a short off white head. Aroma is sweet and toasty with a nice caramel hint to it. Flavor is deliciously breadlike and malty. Full of christmassy spices. Let it warm up a little bit, the spices come out more. This is definatly a winter warm even though it has an average abv. Feel is creamy. VERY Drinkable!

 339 characters

Photo of iceball585
4.2/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Light brown color, semi-transparent, thin white layer that faded quickly to a thin ring

S- Caramel malts, woody, brown sugar, hint of spices

T- Cinnamon, nutmeg, sweet, caramel, light malts, mild hops

M- Medium body, low/medium carbonation, smooth, clean, slightly sweet

D- Great session brew

Most Christmas ales are way too over spiced but this one has the perfect balance of spices and malts. They definitley did something right with this years batch.

 461 characters

Photo of Albertv05
3.35/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a pint of the 2007 Chirstmas Ale on tap before my homebrew club meeting. It poured a nice copper color with very little head that turning to lacing really fast. The aroma was sweet with the faint aroma of a nice blend of spices; cinnomon was the only one that really stuck out though I'm sure the typical x-mas spices were in there.

It had a different flavor than other christmas beers I've had. Instead of leaning on the spices I found more of a nuttiness with some sweetness in the foreground and spices backing it up. It really reminded me of a snickerdoodle cookie quite a bit. In fact, if you closed your eyes when you are drinking this one it really reminded me of my mother pulling x-mas cookies out of the oven when I was little.

There was a little weirdness in the aftertaste of the beer which I detect in most of CB's beer which I'm guessing is their house yeast. Not a big deal but i'm just sensitive to that.

This is different than the typical x-mas beer offering. If you're looking for a holiday beer laced with nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, etc in the foreground this won't do it but its a good offering by CB's

 1,133 characters

Photo of Rudgers73
2.67/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served at Salena's in an American Pint glass.

Pours a deep copper color with mild carbonation. Nothing but a swirl of used-to-be-head when I get it. The smell is of malt, hops, and spices with a touch of soggy dishtowel at the end. The taste is similar with the spices coming to light as the beer warms. Lots of nutmeg and cinnamon come out as it comes up to temp until it becomes almost overwhelming. And lets not forget that dishrag mildew smell as it becomes more intense.

I think that their beer would be a lot better if they would change the grain bill and yeast more than just the hops. It's almost like every beer starts from the same damn thing at this place.

 669 characters

Photo of oberon
3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this at the Holiday Valley Beer and Wine Fest yesterday,the guy poured a nice big 6-8oz sample it poured a clear deep copper color with a sticky white head.Big mulling spices in the nose I picked up some nutmeg,brown sugar,and of course cinnamon a light toastiness underneath made the aromas quite appetizing.The flavors didnt seem to jump out at ya like the aromas the mulling spicees were there but lighter with honeyish and cinnamon flavors dominating,seemed a tad thin but not watery and it went down easy.A pretty solid holiday season beer but I have had better.

 571 characters

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CB's Christmas Ale from CB Craft Brewers
3.58 out of 5 based on 28 ratings.
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