Santa's Butt
Ridgeway Brewing

Santa's ButtSanta's Butt
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Ridgeway Brewing
England, United Kingdom
Porter - English
Ranked #129
Ranked #28,395
3.4 | pDev: 14.41%
Jan 17, 2022
Nov 25, 2004
Santa's ButtSanta's Butt
Notes: This special holiday porter is made for winter - rich and warming, the way they like it at the North Pole. It was inspired by this famous line from a well-loved children's storybook: "And Santa sat on his great butt, enjoying a hardy brew..." In case you find that amusing, the brewer hastens to point out that "butt" refers to a certain sized barrel customarily used for beer. Still snickering, eh? Get your mind out of the gutter, or Santa will be skipping your home entirely this year.
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3.36 by irishevans from California on Jan 17, 2022
Photo of Sigmund
3.52/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by Sigmund from Norway

500 ml bottle, Cardinal Pub & Bar, Stavanger. ABV is 6%. Mahogany colour, moderate beige head. Moderate aroma of medium dark malts, chocolate and vanilla. Moderately roasty and nice flavour, notes of chocolate, raisins and fruit cake. Can’t blame Santa for sitting on his butt and enjoying this one.

Jan 07, 2022
3.74 by BeerForMuscle from New Jersey on Nov 11, 2021
Photo of Sabtos
4.07/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by Sabtos from Ohio

Cola reddish-brown, almost darkly opaque but actually clear when held up to light, with a tall khaki head settling to a thin but creamy tan blanket that retains well.

Pleasantly mild and chocolatey with a tobacco roast, Santa's Butt actually has a light semi-bitter woody tang, and also a bit of sweet yet toasted brown malt.

It at times reminds me of Samuel Smith's Chocolate or Oatmeal stouts, but for a bit of herbal spice that I can't quite put my finger on. It's an almost gingerbread character, but very faint.

Jan 03, 2021
Photo of Darkmagus82
3.4/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by Darkmagus82 from Texas

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass
Appearance – The beer pours a dark brown color with a one finger head of tan colored foam. The head fades fast, leaving just a trace of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.
Smell – The aroma of the brew is rather strong of a brown bread and caramel aroma. Along with these smells comes a little bit of a toasted and roasted malt smell as well as a decent bit of molasses. Along with these smells comes a bit of nut and a touch of cocoa.
Taste – The taste begins with a toasted and roasted malt flavor mixed with a decent showing of some sweeter molasses. Along with these tastes comes a bit of cocoa and a bit of nut. The nuttiness gets stronger as the taste advances, with a bit more molasses and some more toast and a bit of roasted oat coming to the tongue, one is left with a toasty and roasted, lightly sweetened but more malty taste to linger on the tongue.
Mouthfeel – The body of the brew is medium in thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is on the moderate side. For the style the feel is good and makes for a nice roasty sipper.
Overall – A decent roasty porter. Nothing out of the ordinary, but fun to try none the less.

Dec 31, 2020
3.27 by SViterileroux74 from Texas on Dec 21, 2020
Photo of puck1225
3.92/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by puck1225 from Texas

I found this beer quite enjoyable and festive. Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass. Clear dark brown color with good beige head and good lacing. Sweet spicy smell and taste. Rye spice and warm spices like cinnamon and nutmeg. A bit thin feel but overall this is a nice warming beer for the season.

Dec 14, 2020
Photo of spectru
3.35/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5
by spectru from Florida

12/11/2020 Dark (It's a porter), light tan head, big at first, recedes, but not too fast to a nice film, lacy; Not much aroma; Mild slightly chocolatey flavor; Mild carbonation, not unlike some other porters and stouts; Not too bad if only it had better carbonation.

Dec 11, 2020
3.75 by jeschaefer from Texas on Sep 12, 2020
1.97 by Chilmer from Iowa on Mar 08, 2020
3.59 by lsudduth from Ohio on Jan 05, 2020
3.07 by williahd from Maine on Jan 05, 2020
3.52 by GaryColeman from California on Dec 30, 2019
3.63 by MTKATL from Georgia on Dec 24, 2019
3 by crob3888 from California on Dec 23, 2019
3.49 by craigbelly from Iowa on Dec 16, 2019
Photo of JoeChicago
1/5  rDev -70.6%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1
by JoeChicago

Tastes like watered down domestic lite beer. What a disappointment!

Dec 06, 2019
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
3.08/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
by JonnoWillsteed from England

L- Under this halogen light it's a very dark cola colour, with a glint of ruby flashing through when held near the lamp. Clear (filtered), pours with thin off-white head. - A partial surface covering + lacing remain 5mins later.
S- Some notes of roasted grain.
T- Roasted grains, some coffee notes, initially it seemed thin but the 6% ABV comes through just before the first swallow, accompanied by some punchy and rising coffee taste. This rather unusual ebb and flow of the taste repeats on the next few swigs.
F- Similar ebb and flow on the feel. From 'thin for 6.0% and light on Feel', to pretty punchy when the ABV% and dryer coffee amps up.
O- I haven't read the lable yet (I will once I'm done drafting and rating this), and I wonder if it'll give any clues; plus might it have some added coffee? FWIW I don't read other reviews here until I've concluded by own findings. Overall I'm not quite convinced, IMO there appears to be something potentially a bit synthetic about this.
500ml lable. Wholefoods London W8, £3.49 BB: 03/08/2021.

ps. Reading the bottle now...
'Brewed in England for the USA' - curious.
Explains that 'Butt' refers to an English barrel, and not what Americans might assume - Hohoho, sheesh!
Ingredients says simply 'Contains barley and oats'; so no way of knowing what's in it, not reassuring IME.

Dec 05, 2019
Photo of Gordono
3.45/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
by Gordono from Nevada

Not a bad beer, just not what I think of as a porter. Light of color and flavor, it’s a Porter Lite.

Nov 29, 2019
3.4 by Quafftastic from Virginia on Dec 26, 2018
3.66 by DruC4 from Michigan on Dec 25, 2018
Photo of Premo88
3.44/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25
by Premo88 from Texas

16.9 oz. bottle poured into snifter
(F20 261 printed on label)

L: clear dark brown with some purple in it; weakish head of offwhite foam about 1/4-inch thick that dissipates quickly; no sticking or lacing

S: fruitcake, plums, dates, fig ... all very light aromas

T: fruitcake, toasted fruitcake, molasses ... like the nose, the flavors are not intense but relatively subtle; something earthy in it, a bit of English hops giving it some complexity; as it warms, a bread-malt flavor starts tasting like; the earthy bitterness almost gets medicinal or peaty at times, especially with a big swallow ... that almost-peatiness is the beer's most porter-like note — everything else is from the English pale ale/strong ale family

F: lightweight, plenty of carbonation ... arguably weak but it works fine for me

O: much more of an English strong ale than a porter; the flavor and aroma notes don't crack 5-6 on an intensity scale of 0-10, and it's also overpriced compared to the brewery's Reindeer's Revolt or Lump of Coal, so it's sub 3.5 rating makes sense; I like it more than that, for it does deliver enough decent English bitter notes to call it a B-; it's worth trying once, not worth revisiting

Dec 23, 2018
Photo of Suds
3.82/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by Suds from Missouri

Starting a week of Christmas reviews, this brew is dark brown (almost black). The head is light brown and thin. The aroma is faint...slightly nutty, and has a somewhat modest roasted note. Light roast coffee. The taste is balanced. Some malt notes. Smooth, with low carbonation. Pleasant finish. This is not an aggressive beer, but it is satisfying.

Dec 19, 2018
Photo of jettjon
3.31/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
by jettjon from Florida

From a bomber into my Sam Adams perfect pint glass, this one is a pitch brown color with no penetrating light. Vigorous pour yields no head at all, just a thin collar of tan-brown bubbles. Nose is decent, nice toasted malt and sweet sugary malt. In the mouth flavor follows nose with a toasted malt-forward flavor with nice roast character and a small bit of coffee, balanced against a perhaps too-sweet backbone. No alcohol presence. Somewhat one-note and unassuming, certainly a “sessionable” brew. Overall, a rather boring example of style. Would not try again.

Dec 18, 2018
3.75 by paulish from New York on Nov 27, 2018
Photo of matjack85
3.04/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3
by matjack85 from Illinois

The Ridgeway Brewery people are having fun with a play on words by using the word "butt" here. A butt is an actual unit of beer equal to 108 imperial gallons, or roughly 3 barrels. That's a lot of beer. Santa's butt, as pictured on the label, is extra large as well. While not 108 gallons , this beer comes in a 500ml sized brown bottle and is made seasonally for the winter months.

The beer poured a dark yet clear brown color with some nice ruby red tinting to it when held up to the light. The head was a full 3 fingers high, khaki in color, and lasted about a minute before settling down to a thin rim. Not much lacing to speak of though.

The aroma was pleasant but weak. I was picking up some traces of caramel and malt along with some coffee, dark breads, and a touch of dry cocoa powder.

The taste had all the flavors that were in the nose but there just wasn't enough of them. This is a very weak porter. It had mild everything including a touch of mild hops, giving it a mild bitterness. There were no bad flavors but my problem with it was that it lacked much of ANY flavor.

Thin, almost watery mouthfeel with only moderate carbonation. No warming alcohol either despite having a 6.0% alcohol content. Usually it's a good thing when the alcohol is well hidden, but in the case when you're trying to make a warming winter brew, then you want to feel some alcohol going down like when you drink a good brandy. This beer doesn't have that.

Drinkable, but not the best porter I've ever had. Lacks character.

Apr 17, 2018
Photo of superspak
3.88/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by superspak from North Carolina

500 ml bottle into pint glass, bottled on 7/25/2017. Pours crystal clear deep ruby red/brown color with a 1-2 finger dense light khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of chocolate, cocoa, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, brown bread, toasted biscuit, raisin, and plum; with lighter notes of nuttiness, coffee, herbal, grass, and yeast/toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aroma with good balance and complexity of dark/roast/bready malts and light earthy hop/fruity yeast notes; with solid strength. A bit too fruity/yeasty, but not overwhelming. Taste of big chocolate, cocoa, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, brown bread, and toasted biscuit; with lighter notes of nuttiness, coffee, herbal, grass, and yeast/roast/toasted earthiness. Mild herbal/spicy hop and roast bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, brown bread, toasted biscuit, nuttiness, coffee, light dark fruit/herbal, and yeast/roast/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts and light earthy hop/fruity yeast flavors; with a great roast/hop bitter/sweet balance; and zero cloying/astringent flavors after the finish. Lightly increasing dryness from hop/roast bitterness. Light-medium carbonation and medium body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/bready/grainy, and slightly sticky/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Zero warming alcohol for 6%. Overall this is a delicious English porter. All around nice complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts and light earthy hop/fruity yeast flavors; very smooth and easy to drink with the mildly bitter/drying finish. Nicely rich porter malt complexity with mild earthy hop balance. Usually their beers I've had in the past were very yeasty, but this was a lot cleaner with no diacetyl at all. A very enjoyable offering, and spot on style example.

Feb 24, 2018
Photo of ordybill
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by ordybill from Georgia

Poured from a 500ML bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is a dark brown with a small off white head. The aroma is malt and chocolate. The taste is very mild malt with some chocolate.

Jan 30, 2018
Photo of tfsimpkins
5/5  rDev +47.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by tfsimpkins from Florida

Decent porter. Recategorize your lump of coal stout. Its not a stout..

Jan 08, 2018
3.74 by sisterofba from Maryland on Jan 03, 2018
2.5 by 1971bernat from Virginia on Jan 03, 2018
3.59 by Bear1964 from Nebraska on Dec 27, 2017
3.52 by dcmchew from Romania on Dec 27, 2017
2.88 by Staceyqueen from Texas on Dec 25, 2017
Photo of iheartmyTHO
3.34/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5
by iheartmyTHO from Georgia

I bought this beer more so for the novelty aspect. It's not even that good of a porter. The mouthfeel is too thin and a bit hoppy in the wrong kind of way for me.

Dec 25, 2017
2.98 by Soul_Train from Virginia on Dec 25, 2017
3.62 by Gregf51 from Ohio on Nov 20, 2017
4.5 by RochefortChris from North Carolina on Nov 19, 2017
Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

From the bottle, it pours a dark brown with a modest head, soon diminishing to a thin layer. I get raisins and vanilla in the nose. The mouth gets the sweetish flavor, caramel and malts. Enjoyable!

2020 update: Not bad!

Nov 08, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
4/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Lone_Freighter from Vermont

Poured into an English pint glass.
The appearance was a mostly black color with a finger's worth of white foamy head quickly sliding off and leaving a modest semi-speckled lace running here and there.
The aroma had a nice blend of dark fruit sweetness (plum/raisins) with a touch of fig and roasted malt. Some dark and milk chocolate and a fine blend of sweet coffee bean (somewhat espresso?, perhaps). Light earthiness and a little bit of anise spice and sweetness.
The flavor was mostly sweet through the prior mentioned aromas. Nice full and rich chocolate notes come in and touch down on a little bit of sweet cake-like character. Slight aftertaste of chocolate and dark fruits.
The mouthfeel was almost medium bodied, seemed to sit just a touch under and having a wonderful sessionability about it. Carbonation felt a little under but I wasn't too bothered by this. ABV felt on par. Super nice smooth dark fruity sweet finish with some light stickiness, but not cloying.
Overall, as an English porter, it definitely works. I'd have again.

Nov 04, 2017
Santa's Butt from Ridgeway Brewing
Beer rating: 78 out of 100 with 501 ratings