Brrr | Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

very good
321 Reviews

Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
availability: Late Oct. - Early Jan.
bitterness: 50 IBU
alcohol by volume: 7.2%
original gravity: 17° PLATO

Pale, Caramel 10L & 80L,
Munich 10L, Carapils, Dark Chocolate

Bittering: Alchemy
Aroma: Simcoe & Cascade

Added by IronDjinn on 10-19-2008

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 321 | Ratings: 963
Photo of chadjulius
2.59/5  rDev -32%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I do not know the lingo for these beers. But I do know that I generally enjoy anything Widmer Borthers release. The seasonal is hit or miss, and this is for a reason (that is, if they were as good as Drifter, then they would be offered year-round). "Brrr" had me excited; I was in the Christmas mood and their advertisements claimed that the beer had a "candy" taste. Now I do not believe advertising 97.3% of the time, but I did this time, due to company reputation.

Big mistake. This beer is repulsive to the taste. It looks good, smells good, and is strong at over 7% alcohol, but my god, it tastes horrible. I've never had it with a meal, a lemon or lime, but it disappoints every time and I will never try it again....unless I'm already drunk.

 749 characters

Photo of midaszero
2.79/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - Clear amber body with one finger of white head that leaves good lacing

S - Strong hops with al little bit of malt

T - Good balance of malts and hops. Little bit of spice to taste. Slightly bad aftertaste

M - Medium body with medium light carbonation

D - Not to bad but not really a winter seasonal IMHO

 310 characters

Photo of scootpolute
2.8/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 FL OZ. bottle into pint glass.

A - Pours semi-cloudy golden, with a nice white head...- some good lacing.

S - Hops and lots of sweet citrus - some orange & grapefruit tones...

T - Smooth & Bright! A great hop kick at the top, followed by some citrus, then ending with a bit of pine-like spices...Pleasant & refreshing!!

M - Great carbonation! There's a good fullness. Present, but not 'too' much fruity/sweet flavors...The final pine/spice balances the beer out wonderfully!

O - This one is great!! I think what make this beer so good is the fine line of not over-doing 'it' in any particular area (hops, fruity-flavor, pine/spice, carbonation, and last but not least, alcohol level). VERY refreshing and will get again and...…Goin’ to look for a tap ASAP!!!

 772 characters

Photo of SitkaSteve
2.8/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

So I poured this in a mug and a pint glass.
The appearance was a decent dark red to somewhat close to a brown color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated within less than a minute. Light soapy ringy lacing wove around both glasses.
The smell had a cooked cake with a light baked bready sort of ginger spice thing going on, honestly, it wasn't as pleasant as I had hoped.
The taste was basically the same - semi-sweet and somewhat bready with a lingering dulled spice of ginger going on. There's a sharp spice of aftertaste leading to a dry finish.
The mouthfeel was dry and makes me want to suck down 5 gallons of water within the first 5 minutes of drinking this. Holy dry, Batman!
Overall, this has got to be one of the driest beers I've ever had. Is this really supposed to be this way? Wish I could find a date on this somewhere on the bottle. Most likely not come back to this.

 895 characters

Photo of bigbelcher
2.91/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hoppy amber ale, with a huge creamy white head.
Citrus hop aroma with an odd spicy aroma that I couldn't really place. Kind of like spruce but not really. Some toasted malt flavor, much like a brown ale. Surprisngly well hopped for Widmer. Long lasting bitterness on the palate. I wouldn't get a second one.

 307 characters

Photo of RJLarse
2.93/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I bought a six-pack of Brrr at a grocery store. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours mahogany brown color and is clear. A thin white head forms, and leaves a bit of lace on the glass.

Smell is a musty aroma like dirt, with a little pine scent if you really look for it.

Taste is an earthy bitter taste, with a little caramel presence on the finish. A little bit like a dark roasted IPA.

Mouthfeel is thin and dry, ildly carbonated with a bitter aftertaste.

Not the most drinkable winter ale. I can't see myself buying this again. If (as rumored) it is really the replacement for Snowplow Milk Stout, it is a poor replacement.

 626 characters

Photo of KTCamm
2.95/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Starting to see 12 oz Widmers in local six mixers more and more lately.

Pours light brown, see through, with a slight layer of white foam. Fruity malty nose. Cinamonn/nutmeg too.

Heavy full taste with a hop wallop. Syrupy - did someone mix in a barleywine? Subtle fade of carbonation leads to an alcohol close.

Never quite comes together - this is not how I like my winter warmers.

 384 characters

Photo of ritwingr
2.99/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Seems hoppy for the style. Mine was very hop forward, Thin looking light copper pour with a modest head that disappears instantly leaving zero lacing.

To be honest, it tastes like an IPA. All wrong for the style. Inoffensive enough. But I expected more. No seasonal spice notes - that I could detect anyway.

 314 characters

Photo of Bradthoc
3/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Found the beer to a typical, nice tasting, and delicious hop flavored beer. Was drawn to it at the local beer store by it's claim to be a Seasonal Ale. It didn't quite do it for me in that department, but was priced nicely so figured I would give the 6-pack a try.

A - A nice golden to perfectly clear brown.

S - Rich hop scent, slightness of sugars

 351 characters

Photo of beertunes
3/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I realize that this style doesn't really have clearly defined parameters, but this beer isn't close to any of the expected aspects. Poured into straight pint glass. Poured a clear light brown/amber with just a trace of off-white head that no retention and minimal, but decent, lacing.

The aroma was dominantly hoppy, just a hint of malt and no spice. The flavors were also very much like an IPA, not the stated style.

The body was very light for the stated style. Drinkability was very good, although not for the style. Overall, I liked this beer, but thought it was a decent IPA, not what it claims to be. Worth trying, and I'm gonna bust open my 22 of Brrbon in a few minutes.

 680 characters

Photo of bkilpatr
3.08/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. 02/13/09.

Pours a clear deep amber color with about a finger of beige head. The head dropped quickly, slight lacing. Aroma is mildly spicy, buttery sweet malt, and some floral hops.

Taste is somewhat malty with caramel, and some almost hidden spices (nutmeg maybe?). Finishes with a bitter kick of piny hops. Feel is medium bodied with plenty of carbonation. A touch of warming from the alcohol. Drinkability is okay. The bitterness lingers and the alcohol is noticeable.

Decent, but I don't really dig the spices very much. Not my favorite Widmer brew.

 602 characters

Photo of Buebie
3.12/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

- It has recently been brought to my attention that the beer I consumed in this ontasp review was from last years release. I have since had it fresh and it is not even similar. Great brew as always-

Had this beer quite a bit last year. This year I'm very let down by it. What the fuck happened to the hops???!!!

Poured into a pub glass forming just around an inch of off white head. Lace is sticky draping over the entire surface of the glass, all the way down.
The beer is transparent in a brownish copper amber with golden hues when held to light.

Aroma is extra malty, caramel, brown sugar, just a touch of chocolate drifting through the background. Really no hops at the knose. I'm very upset by this, this beer was amazing last year with thunderous amounts of aroma and flavor hops.
Aroma now is subdued with really not much going on.

Taste is all malt, caramel and very very minuscule amounts of orange peel and pine.

I am absolutly dissatisfied with the changes. Although it is still not a terrible beer, it is not even the same beer, it is nothing like it was before and I cant understand how they even thought it would be ok to brew it under the same name if it is not the same beer. I looked forward to this thing all summer and now its finally here, what a let down. I ordered one more just to make sure it was the right one or maybe a bad pour. I even bought a 6 pack on my way home to make sure. But nope, its been changed.

 1,461 characters

Photo of IAmAPenguin
3.16/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Aroma: slightly herby, faint cinnamon, resinous hops. Appearance: Deep amber with little foam. Taste: toasted bread, amber malts, malty syrup, subtle hops and herbs. Overall, not too bad. A nice sessionable ale. Its slightly sweet with syrupy overtones and a nice fresh hop flavor.

 281 characters

Photo of IronDjinn
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked this one up in northern Idaho, must be brand spanking new as no one else has reviewed it yet, which I find surprising. Warm up with a cold one it states.

Pours out a tansparent rich chestnut hue, splash of off white head that settles quickly to a frothy bubbley cap.

Intense hops on the nose, fresh and green along with grapefruit rind, a bit of funk hiding in the background.

I suppose I should know by now that anything brewed in the PNW, including a seasonal or winter warmer will be chock full of hops. Light chewy caramel malt, dash of spice, and a big ripe leafy citrus hop finish that lingers and lingers well into the aftertaste.

Light sticky mouthfeel, ideal for a pale ale....

Ummm, well, a winter seasonal ale that makes a pretty darn good hoppy pale ale, unless that`s what I ended up with bottled with the wrong label.

 853 characters

Photo of DoubleJ
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Draft Picks Pizza Pub, on to the beer:

This was...interesting. Orange copper color in my pint glass, the beer was leaving good initial lacing on the glass as I drank it. The aroma was quite good, hops, dry malt, bready, a bit of orange. As for the had potential here. It certainly was strong tasting, but lacked depth. Strong piney hops with some caramel to balance far so good...but within a quarter of the way it was all bitter hops and no malt to be tasted. I can enjoy a strong hoppy beer, even unbalanced ones, but this one needs to be tweeked to be enjoyable.

 598 characters

Photo of BB1313
3.22/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours copper with nice clarity; fluffy off-white that sticks around leaving great retention and very sticky lacing. Looks really good. The aromas have faint citrus notes and lots of caramel malts. Some orange peel in the mix. Some hints of cocoa as well. Pretty malty. The flavors have a strong sweet malt backbone, but there's still a solid bitterness. Lots of pine needles and caramel. More orange along with some grapefruit. There's a subtle spiciness to this one. Mouthfeel is great and is probably the highlight, in my opinion. It's on the lighter side of full-bodied; extremely creamy and fluffy. Very smooth. Alcohol goes unnoticed and it's easy to drink.

Widmer crafted a nice beer here, but the aromas and flavors aren't overly exciting. Nothing too special, but not bad.

 820 characters

Photo of tone77
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark caramel color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is malts, alchohol is present. Taste is a good bit boozy, some malts, a hint of spice, more alcohol. feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall not bad, but a bit to boozy for me.

 269 characters

Photo of jjanega08
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A= deep amber almost brown but still see through. Tall 2 finger head and average lacing
S=you can smell the hops coming through very nicely but the biggest character is the toasted malt... smells pretty good
T= big hops up front followed by the malt which is quickly swallowed by alcohol. The alcohol is not overpowering but its there.
M= sharp and crisp. Not too bad but nothing great
D= average. The flavor cools down quite a bit as this one warms. But a decent beer I suppose.

 479 characters

Photo of Nerudamann
3.28/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Look - clear, slightly dark amber in color. Two fingers worth of foam that dissipates somewhat slowly. Somewhat slow carbonation.

Smell - Fairly hoppy in its aroma. Somewhat citrusy, and maybe some extra spices thrown in as well.

Taste - Hoppy in its taste. Maybe some subtle spices, but I can't tell which. Fairly bitter from the start, concentrating mostly on the sides and finishing on the back of the palate. Texture is pretty well on the creamy side.

Drinkability - Not terribly complex, but a good-tasting brew. Maybe a little too bitter for me to get a six-pack of, but good for bottle or two.

 603 characters

Photo of sevopie
3.29/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Dark caramel brown with with a large off-white head that laces well.

Smell - This one is strangely inconsistent in smell. A couple bottles smelled largely of citrus hops with a tinge of caramel, but the others were bitter piney with a musty smell to them. I'm wondering if this is a difference in batches or a bacterial infection.

Taste - Again, inconsistent. A couple bottles were beautifully crisp with a slight lingering citrus hop flavor. The others were piney with a strange caramel sweetness and almost no lingering hop.

Mouthfeel - All were in agreement here. A good dose of carbonation with a great coating mouthfeel. Definitely a strong point of the beer.

Drinkability - Due to the inconsistency, this one gets some points knocked off. If its the former of the bottles... this is one of my favorite winter beers and is an easy purchase. Unfortunately I've run into this with 2 separate 6-packs, so I likely will not be buying it again, which is a shame.

 979 characters

Photo of tastymug
3.29/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Pours a clear, red amber color with a nice head and lacing.

Smell: Citrusy and malty, hints of caramel. You can also pick up on the hops.

Taste: Sweet, with a nice balance of the caramel/malty flavor and the citrusy, hoppy flavor, with a tad of spice on the end.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium-bodied and moderate carbonation; crisp.

Overall: I found this beer very agreeable to drink, and a nice break from the more spicy, malty winter warmers of this time of year. It has more hop than you’d expect in a winter warmer but that was ok by me! It’s well balanced and I could easily drink more than one. This was my favorite out of a sampler of four different winter beers.

 686 characters

Photo of ChopperSmith
3.3/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle, bought in a six pack.

Appearance - Clear and dark amber with a foamy tan head that didn't retain long and had minimal lacing.

Smell - Sweet, bready, malty with noticeable pine-like hops scents.

Taste - Hoppy, sweet and malty. Not as flavorful as the Widmer Broken Halo IPA or Drifter APA. This tastes more like a hoppy amber ale.

Mouth feel - Heavily carbonated, a bit thin and nothing exceptional.

Drinkability - Very smooth for a relatively higher ABV American amber beer (it doesn't really fit in the traditional "winter warmer" style category), but I'll probably stick with the Widmer Drifter APA or Broken Halo IPA first.

 661 characters

Photo of Tolnik
3.3/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured this darker amber colored beer into a pint glass. The foam was just about two fingers and reduced to a steady covering over the beer. The smell of pine and citrus greet your nose. While the first taste is a hoppy, caramel flavoring with hints of citrus and pines. However the aftertaste of a toffee comes forth.

 318 characters

Photo of cadenwhitaker
3.3/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Decent winter hoppy beer. Really reminded me of the Celebration. Lots of pine, citrus, very little caramel. The bitterness of the hops tended to overtake most of it by the finish of the glass.

I'm not sure if I would get this again as I would probably get a Celebration instead.

 279 characters

Photo of BigMarty1980
3.31/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A-Brilliant Red Ale color

S-Strong essence of pine & straw. Modest notes of grapefruit.

T-This beer tastes like...standing on the deck of a mountain house in New Hampshire during Christmas Week Wearing a winter hat, heavy peat coat and flannel lined cargos (red & black flannel lining) there's 3 feet of snow on ground and the pine trees are cloaked in snow.


O-Not like other Winter Ales that pack a strong all spice/ginger. A decent beer. Something different at the holidays

 492 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Brrr from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
3.81 out of 5 based on 963 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.