Heavy Seas Yule Tide (2013) | Heavy Seas Beer

very good
24 Reviews
Heavy Seas Yule Tide (2013)Heavy Seas Yule Tide (2013)

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Aged for 6 weeks in Jamaican Rum barrels, this Imperial Red offers a full malt body dominated by toast, chocolate, and caramel notes. Rum barrel aging imparts a rich buttery rum character along with oaken vanilla notes. Ginger offsets the overall sweetness by adding its own drying zing.

28 IBU

Added by MasterSki on 11-14-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 24 | Ratings: 125
Photo of metter98
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear reddish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige head that died down, leaving lacing on the surface and a collar of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Light aromas of rum from the barrel aging are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has lots of flavors of rum along with some hints of ginger and oak.
M: It feels just about medium-bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: Except for the rum flavors, this beer hides its alcohol very well and is pleasant to sip. It seemed like the rum was a bit too strong and masked the flavors of the underlying red ale and ginger. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the beer.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, 2013 vintage. Pours slightly hazy dark ruby red color with a 2 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of caramel, toast, toffee, molasses, brown bread, raisin, plum, fig, ginger, rum, oak, clove, vanilla, and herbal earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, ginger, and oak barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big caramel, toast, toffee, molasses, brown bread, raisin, plum, fig, ginger, vanilla, rum, oak, clove, and herbal earthiness. Lingering notes of caramel, toast, toffee, molasses, brown bread, raisin, plum, fig, ginger, vanilla, oak, clove, and herbal earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, ginger, and rum barrel flavors; with an awesome malt/barrel balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a moderately creamy and lightly slick mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent barrel aged spiced imperial red ale. All around great balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, ginger, and rum barrel flavors; and extremely smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of oberon
3.93/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear amber with a thinner off white head atop,good color clarity but not much head to speak of.Sweet rum soaked dark fruit in the nose with just a hint of the spicy ginger.Flavors have some nice complexities,buttery rum and dark fruit along with caramel sweetness with a big shot of zesty ginger root in the finish to halt all the sweetness.Although I am not a huge fan of ginger it really plays a good role in this beer,the rum barrel is predominant as it should be according to what the beer is.Not bad.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at City Beverage in Winston-Salem, NC

A: Pours a clear dark reddish amber in color with light amounts of active visible carbonation and some faint garnet red highlights. The beer has a finger tall sudsy foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a thick film covering the majority of the surface of the beer and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of rum + oak from the barrel aging over the top of ginger, toasted malts, and herbal hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of toasted malts with a light amount of caramel sweetness with moderate to strong flavors of rum, oak, and vanilla from the barrel aging. There are light to moderate flavors of spicy ginger and just a hint of something that reminds me of After Eight mints (combination of chocolate, butter, and mint). Light notes of herbal hops which contribute extremely minimal amounts of bitterness.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Relatively smooth.

O: Not always the hugest fan of rum barrel aged beers as they can often be too dominant/sweet over the top of the flavor of the beer but this is an excellent example. Very enjoyable and easy to drink - very holiday flavored. Definitely worth grabbing.

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Photo of Jason
4.04/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz brown bottle with a vintage date on the label.

LOOK: Chestnut brown, good clarity, excellent lacing

SMELL: Fresh ginger, pineapple, exotic fruit, raw honey, light brown sugar, rum cake

TASTE: Plum pudding, candied ginger, wood, treacle, rum raisins, lush fullish body, dried grass, bready, modest hopping, warming, ripe plums, spicy woody finish

I live for beers like this, spiced and wood aged with a hefty backing yet still pretty easy to drink. Great ginger addition and the wood aging is spot on.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.91/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful crimson hue completely clear no haze at all, big foam, layers of rich lacing with nice retention...that's hard to pull off with barrel aged beers. This brew utilizes Jamaican rum barrels, they didn't mention any brands, I know of one major rum distiller in Jamaica but who knows? Aroma smells like fresh ginger sliced and added to a sweet juice marinade, it's awesome smelling. The alcohol presence comes out to with nearly burnt/caramelized sugars. Fruit wise, I'm picking up sliced apples, hints of cherry, the whole comes of like a spiced fruit cake. Beneath the sharp ginger I'm starting to get some orange zest, just a touch of that though the ginger really steals the show here. The Appleton Estate notes get richer and more upfront as it warms, let's see how it tastes. Sadly the flavor falls short of the complex nose, very astringent alcohol burn with each sip, limited beer profile no burnt sugars or molasses, ginger adds a spicy bitterness but lacks to fulfill the complexity found in the nose. It get's smoother with each sip, but the one dimensional quality saddens me the ginger spice really adds a presence of Christmas, and again the components together come off like festive spiced rum cake. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied carbonation, it's time to go light up a cigar to balance the sweetness of this beer out. It literally gets cloying on the palate in a couple sips. Overall impressive creativity, hopefully next time we see better execution from Hugh Sisson and company down in Baltimore, MD.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a reddish mahogany with a white head. The snifter is left with much lacing.
The aroma is sweet with vanilla, oak and a bit of rum.

In the taste, more sweet vanilla and rummy notes. Caramelized brown sugar and buttery toffee reign supreme. A bit of oaky barrel is present with semi dry tannins in the finish. The rum flavor is very sweet and sugary on its own right and works well with the base beer. Though sweet, it is not cloying.

Full bodied, ultra smooth feel. Creamy, well carbonated and sweetness lingers long into the finish. Overall this is one big, beautiful beer and is dangerously drinkable. A beer worth seeking out and possibly a cellar candidate. I'd like to see how a few years would treat this.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a three finger cream head that fades slowly to a ring leaving a good lace. Clear dark amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Spicy rum nose and flavor is spicy, malty and rum. Higher ABV is hidden. $9.50 for a 22oz bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. Served in a snifter, the beer pours a dark ruby red color with about an inch light tan head. Head retention and lacing are both decent enough. Aroma is nice, the brew smells like ginger, rum, caramel malt, and vanilla. Taste is similar to the aroma, it tastes like ginger, buttery rum, vanilla, caramel, and also some dark fruit and a sweet herbal flavor. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy with moderate carbonation. I think this is a good beer, definitely worth a try especially if you like ginger! $7.99 a bomber.

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

This is an outstanding winter beer. The appearance is clear and red....tight bubbles float upward. Foamy white head. The smell is a mix of intense malt, spicy ginger, and a surgery note. There is a little wood, some booze, and a little spice (a recurrence of the ginger?). The taste is amazing..sweet, malty, spicy, and enjoyable. Very soft mouthfeel. The ginger gives the beer a very holiday-like character and provides a god balance point to the sweetness. Not a lot of hop flavor, which is fitting for the brew. Soft, full, intense, and perfect to relax with during the holidays.

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Photo of wvsabbath
3.89/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Copper tanish brown, very minimal head, some decent lacing.

Smell - Rum, brandy, vanilla, added spices, cinnamon, ginger, mint, some minor herbal. Reminds me of a rum and coke.

Taste - First sip as expected is rum flavored. Ginger is noticeable along with some vanilla and some caramel malts. Has a woody, toasted flavor with some very faint hops. Some plum and raisin come out near the finish along with some alcohol warmth.

Mouthfeel - Rum coats the tongue along with some spices. Palate gets spices, some malts and warm alcohol. Aftertaste is rum bitter, and very ginger/minty.

Overall - Not bad at all. The rum is not overpowering, yet very distinct in each sip. Smooth and very spiced yet nothing is overboard. It could use a little more kick being its barrel aged and 9%, but in all, I enjoyed it very much and would drink again.

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Photo of BB1313
4.21/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a very dark amber with some light getting through; fluffy off-white head that leaves nice lacing and retention. The aromas are great. There's a ton of vanilla. Lots of cinnamon and ginger as well. The buttery aspects deliver. The rum is notceable and really gives this a wonderful nose. The flavors are good, but not as bold as I was anticipating based on the nose. The rum seems to take a backseat in the flavor department. More sweet vanilla. More cinnamon, ginger, and other spices. Earthy flavors. There's not much oak/wood characteristics that are noticeable and I would've like to see more. Lots of malts. Some caramel. Extremely subtle hints of cocoa. Once again, lots of spices, but it's not spicy. Mouthfeel is nice. It's on the lighter side of full-bodied; moderate carbonation. It's very smooth and dangerously drinkable. Alcohol goes unnoticed. It's a fun beer to drink.

This is a very nice beer. It's definitely fitting for the holidays. It sort of has a pumpkin ale vibe going on. I'm not sure how this would age, but I'd personally recommend drinking this one fresh. I would've liked more rum barrel characteristics in flavors, that my only beef. Despite that, it's still a tasty brew. Definitely worth checking out.

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Photo of ThickNStout
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from Sprayberry Bottle Shop (Marietta, GA). 7.99. There are some illegible numbers on the bottom of the bottle- suffice it to say this is a recent 2013 release. Served in a Clown Shoes snifter.

Pours deep translucent ruby red with almost two fingers cream hued head. The froth remains quite a while and leaves healthy chunks of lace.

Smells of butter rum, ginger, earthy and woodsy.

Taste follows the nose. A dominant sweet rum flavor with notes of ginger, caramel malts, buttery cake, wood, molasses, vanilla, mild cinnamon spice, honey, brown sugar and a bit of booze. Tasty.

Slick medium full feel with moderate carbonation. Buttery rum cake and ginger snap finish.

A different and unique winter warmer. Certainly far from any other imperial red I've tried but no complaints. The Uncharted Waters series continues to release easily attainable, quality, barrel aged, enjoyable, high value brews.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a New Belgium globe.

A: Dark red with great clarity. A whipped-looking off white head retains well and leaves thick collars of lacing.

S: Malty aromas of toast, crust, and caramel. Fruit cake. Fruity scents of strawberry and orange, along with darker pitted fruits. Zing of ginger. Spiced rum and wood.

T: Crusty with a strong toasty introduction. Pinch of cocoa. Bready. Berry fruits, plums, and rum soaked golden raisins. Woody pull. Buttery rum character. Earthy hops with a modest bitterness. Ginger adds a nice little zing, and the spice flavor carries into the crusty finish.

M: Thick in body. Creamy and chewy. Warming rum and ginger spice. Very slight oak astringency. Tongue-prickling carbonation enhances the ginger just a bit.

O: A very unique and interesting concept. It comes together quite nicely, and the flavors mesh well. A great barrel-aged sipper with some pleasantly unconventional twists. Kudos to Heavy Seas for releasing yet another great barrel-aged beer at an affordable price.

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Photo of Greywulfken
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: deep amber ale, clear but dark, with a rich head a few fingers thick of tan head. ample sheets of lace from top to bottom

S: rich, hearty and welcoming malt grains, wet toffee sugar and rum barrel wood

T: malt richness, suggestive of caramel and grain water, spices as of a holiday feat, warm pineapple rum; some bright, tart (?) sweet herb comes through - perhaps the ginger...

M: light and quick; medium-weight at best, smooth and slick, airy and drying finish

O: a real nice, relatively light-feeling (for an Imperial amber), and nicely accented with rum barrel aging. Rum serves to be an excellent counterpart to the malts and hops, bringing out fruitiness and a nice warming, winter ale feel.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.85/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

"Heavy Seas'ons greetings! As a special thank you to our beer drinking public and supporters of our Uncharted Waters, we offer this malty Imperial Red, spiced with Ginger, and aged in Jamaican Rum barrels. 'Mon'! Yule Tide is sure to warm you up on a cold winter's evening. You could pair this with your mother's fruit cake, but everyone would laugh at you." Brewed in the style of an American Red Ale with Ginger added, aged in Rum Barrels. As part of the Uncharted Waters series, this recipe was deliberately changed in the years to come, making this beer a one-off release. Available in 22 oz. bottles and on limited draft.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a snifter glass.

(Appearance) Very strong gusher upon opening; pours a pale brown head of a foamy frothed consistency over a cloudy medium brown body with assertive carbonation. Retention is good and lacing is light and spotty. 3.75

(Smell) Rich, caramelized malt notes with buttery, toffee undertones, accentuated by rummy barrel aging and fermented fruit syrups. Ginger is subtle but noticeable. Potency is moderate. 3.75

(Taste) The flavor largely follows the aroma of this beer, with toasted and caramelized malts, dark fruit sugars and toffee richness. The ginger does a nice job of brightening up the body, with more spicy perk present than flavor. Gentle rum finish really does well by the body and contributes well to this beer overall without being overly pronounced or harsh. Finishes lightly viscous and resinous. 4

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, moderately viscous, lightly chewy, medium dry. Carbonation is medium, generating a medium frothiness and a moderately crisp finish. Body is medium+ for the style, medium+ overall. Balance is nearly even sweet to spicy and bitter compounds. Alcohol presence is light and there are no off characters. 3.75

(Overall) Really quite nice and holds up nicely- the rum and ginger come together in a unique spin that feels rather festive in flavor, spicy and bright with flavor. One of Heavy Seas' better Uncharted Waters offerings, although this vintage is a very specific recipe and has changed since 2013. 3.75

Heavy Seas Beer's
Yule Tide 2013

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Photo of ksimons
4.06/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-clear ruby with a thin layer of white head that quickly fades away to leave a bit of lacing on top

S-really nice aroma, caramel malt, vanilla, cinnamon, and rum

T-taste matches the smell, caramel malt, vanilla, cinnamon spiceyness, raisins, and a nice finish of rum warming

M-has kind of a creamy body, medium carbonation

Overall my expectations were exceeded for this. I really like all the spices and the rum adds a nice warm quality to the beer.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.41/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

appearance: Mostly clear chestnut. a full tan head and messy lacing that recedes quickly. A handsome Yule Tide brew.
smell: Wow, damned if this doesn't smell like eggnog. That Jamaican Rum oak barrel thing is really happening. Rich and buttery indeed.
taste: Lives up to the nose. Not as sweet as expected from the nose though. Guess the ginger does indeed offset the sweetness.
overall: After a few years of just amazing beers it's not so easy to be wowed. This one pulled it off. Very pleasant surprise.

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Photo of RickS95
3.64/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown pour with lighter undertones of red. It looks rich and festive. The head is a disappointment as it never grows into much and dies before you know it. What bubbles do form are a light tan in color and fairly uniform in smallness. When swirled, there is a tiny spotting of lace left behind.

Very malty nose, and you can pick up the ginger and an earthy wood note to it. Could just be the ginger, but the scent resembles brown sugar and possibly spicy oatmeal cookies. No hop presence whatsoever.

There's plenty of flavor, but most of it comes from the ginger. I'm sensing some nutmeg as well, though it could be the wood that's coming through. Lots of spices come forward, probably a bit too much for some. There's kind of a scotch ale vibe to it.

Very malty and a bit on the spicy side. It's full bodied, but the high alcohol never really presents itself. Due to the spices, it's not really a smooth beer, but it's full of flavor. That said, it's not too dry and never burns and each swallow leaves you with just a spiciness to it that the next sips enhances.

Not an exceptional beer, but it's clearly a winter beer. Some aren't going to like it because of the spices, but it's never bitter and hides its ABV well. Overally, it's a good beer and being a seasonal, not really something you'll grow tired of.

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Photo of sleazo
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A_Copper colored ale. Sticky lacing

S_Rum, molasses and a vague spice. Then rum is strong but it's not too boozy on the nose

T_Initial sip is of wood and rum. Then the ginger hits and notes of vanilla, cola and molasses are evident. Again not too boozy. Aftertaste lingers like a nice quality rum.

M_slightly thicker than medium bodied with a soft carbonation.

O_This reminds me of a well made dark and stormy. An interesting beer and a nicely spices Christmas beer.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
4.98/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

22 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, deep, dark, mahogany color, topped with an eighth of a finger of white head that lasted for a long time, and completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Very aromatic! Strong, boozy aromas of rum, brown sugar, caramel, vanilla, floral hops and some malt. But more than anything, I get rum and brown sugar, caramel and vanilla. Due to the aging in rum barrels, and the high ABV, there’s some alcohol in the nose as well.

Taste: Wow! Very interesting and complex. Strong flavors of beer up front, along with toasted malt, black pepper, and some strong, floral hops, followed by some brown sugar-like sweetness and finished by some really strong, boozy rum flavors. I also get some oak and vanilla. Delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied to slightly chewy, and with a little more carbonation that I was expecting. With an ABV of 9.0%, and with the aging in rum barrels, there is quite a bit of alcohol on the palate, imparting a pleasant warmth in the mouth.

Overall: This is another remarkable beer from Heavy Seas! Very complex in flavor. I’m getting two bottle so this at least next year, one to drink right away, and one or two to age. Delicious!

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Photo of RummyRedbeard
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle to snifter

A: Deep amber, blood red under the light. Lot of bubbles emit from the bottom of the glass at first but slow down after a few minutes. One finger off white head -- reminds me of cream soda. Head quickly recedes to a mere ring around the glass. Lacing is present but nothing particularly special.

S: Immediately I smell vanilla. Rum obviously. Heavy caramel and maple syrup.

T: Caramel up front with a nice spicy ginger bite. Rum qualities include vanilla and spices. At times I could have easily mistaken this for a scotch ale. As it warms up the 9% becomes much more apparent, but it's nothing overwhelming.

M: Very malty and sticky. Pretty much unavoidable with what it is but it comes on a little thick.

O: Definitely pleased with the purchase. I have had things in the past that I've liked a lot from Clipper City as well as things I have not liked so I came in to this with no reservations or expectations. Amber ales are one of my favorite styles and rum is probably my second favorite type of booze behind bourbon so I figured there couldn't be much harm with this one especially at a reasonable price for a 9%er. The coolest part about this brew is easily the spiciness from the ginger; I had read the bottle before I bought it but I must have read over that part... it adds an extra quality to the beer and I'm glad they did it. I give it two thumbs up. Cheers.

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Photo of kevintaraross
4.13/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Had this over the weekend in a big-boy bottle. All I can say is "WOW!!!!"

Love most Heavy Seas on Draft and less than half of it's collection in a bottle from my local beer store BUT this seasonal bottle beer was GREAT!

Loved the "wintery" spices added - and only wish I had tried this earlier this Fall Season.

Will definitely buy again - no issues!

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Photo of Jack_Malts
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Loses points on mouthfeel, a bit more watery than I expected. Pours dark reddish brown with one finger tan head. Smells like ginger, rum, tart dark fruits. Taste follows, big ginger and nice fruitiness. Rum and wood astringency. Pretty good, I like it but I wonder what it would've tasted like fresh? Would recommend

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Heavy Seas Yule Tide (2013) from Heavy Seas Beer
4.02 out of 5 based on 125 ratings.
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