What Holiday/Winter beers are you looking forward to?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Genuine, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. Genuine

    Genuine Devotee (437) May 7, 2009 Connecticut

    With the Holidays right around the Corner, it’s about this time I get excited about all of the holiday/winter brews that’ll be emerging.

    For me it’s:
    SN Celebration
    Anchor’s Christmas Ale (I have a 2017 magnum to open this year)
    ST’s Old Man Winter Ale (wasn’t fond of their 2xmas)
    Bell’s Christmas ale (can’t wait to try it)
    Great Divide’s Hibernation Ale
    Brooklyn BCS
    Wormtown Blizzard of 78
    Can’t forget SA’s Old Fezziwig and Holiday Porter!

    I hope to find Great Lakes Christmas ale this year as I haven’t found it yet in my area, along with

    What say you, fellow BA’s?
  2. JediMasterLenin

    JediMasterLenin Disciple (303) Dec 25, 2018 District of Columbia

    I'm not a huge Winter Warmer drinker, but I'll probably pick up a six-pack of Anderson Valley Winter Solstice when I see it.
    I'm also a fan of Celebration, because fresh hop IPAs are always a "yes please" from me.
    mikeinportc, SWChi and scream like this.
  3. champ103

    champ103 Poo-Bah (4,604) Sep 3, 2007 Texas

    On top of your list, all add..

    Saint Arnold Christmas Ale
    Real Ale Coffee Porter
    Avery Old Jubilation
    Deschutes Jubelale
    mikeinportc, SWChi, Bigrock and 6 others like this.
  4. bsp77

    bsp77 Poo-Bah (2,265) Apr 27, 2008 Minnesota

    I've already purchased many of them:

    SN Celebration (always awesome)
    Deschutes Jubelale (always awesome)
    Anchor Christmas (decent this year)
    Bell's Christmas Ale (had last night and NOT impressed)
    Great Lakes Christmas Ale (always awesome)
    Southern Tier 2XMAS (going to retry after several years, liked it then)
    N'ice Chouffe
    St Bernardus Christmas Ale
    Ayinger Celebrator

    Still want to get a few more Belgian Noels and Samiclaus
  5. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,672) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    I've already purchased (and finished) a 6 pack of Summit Winter Ale, always a solid and enjoyable one for me.

    I have the St Bernardus Christmas Ale on my list (actually a quad, not a winter warmer, but who's counting?) and this year's Anchor Christmas Ale. That should do it for me.
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  6. Coronaeus

    Coronaeus Meyvn (1,002) Apr 21, 2014 Ontario (Canada)

    Unibroue La Resolution is a great beer to pair with Christmas dessert.
  7. JBogan

    JBogan Champion (837) Jul 15, 2007 California

    I purchased and finished a sixer of Anchor's Christmas Ale. Thought it was ok but probably not something I'd get again this year.

    As always, I'm looking forward to picking up a few Belgian Holiday/Winter offerings.
    SWChi, dukeandduke and Shanex like this.
  8. Shanex

    Shanex Poo-Bah (1,504) Dec 10, 2015 France
    Moderator Society Trader

    N’ice Chouffe - one of the best I’ve had.
  9. JBogan

    JBogan Champion (837) Jul 15, 2007 California

    One of the all time best beer deals ever was a couple years back when the Total Wine where I shop had the 4 packs of this great beer on closeout shortly after the holidays for ... get this ... $4.99. Needless to say I picked up a fair amount of those.
  10. Shanex

    Shanex Poo-Bah (1,504) Dec 10, 2015 France
    Moderator Society Trader

    Very good price and hard to beat that! Even Europe gets it pricier.
  11. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (1,672) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    It's my understanding they tweak it a bit each year. I've only had the 2018 version, so IDK how much it changes year over year.
    officerbill likes this.
  12. bsp77

    bsp77 Poo-Bah (2,265) Apr 27, 2008 Minnesota

    In my experience, it is always dark, it is always Porter-like, and it is always piney. The Christmas spices change somewhat, but never enough to make it seem like an all-new beer.
  13. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (1,879) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    Stone Xocoveza for certain and lots of stouts/coffee stouts from various breweries.
  14. jlitt8276

    jlitt8276 Initiate (38) Aug 19, 2012 Ohio

    No one mentioned Thirsty Dogs 12 dogs of Christmas? I’d like to re-visit that. And fair priced if I remember correctly.
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  15. JBogan

    JBogan Champion (837) Jul 15, 2007 California

    The first one that I had was maybe 15 years or so ago. There was one year, can't remember exactly which one but I want to say maybe somewhere around 2006 or so that was phenomenal.

    This year's was ok, but I felt perhaps a little too thin and slightly over carbonated. Just my two cents.
  16. Thankin_Hank

    Thankin_Hank Savant (920) Nov 18, 2013 Texas

    Lakewood Bourbon Barrel Temptress
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  17. bsp77

    bsp77 Poo-Bah (2,265) Apr 27, 2008 Minnesota

    In my experience, there are 5 big buckets of winter / holiday beers:
    • Winter Warmers (English tradition): these can be either spiced (sometimes called Wassail) or unspiced (basically an English Strong Ale or Old Ale)
    • Weihnachtsbier (German tradition); any higher abv lager released for winter or the holidays. Can be Bock-like, Oktoberfest-like or anything else really
    • Noel (Belgian tradition): typically very high abv, typically a Dark Ale (but not always), and typically spiced
    • Imperial Stouts (American and English tradition): definitely becoming more of an American thing, as less standard Imperial Stouts and more Barrel-Aged or Pastry ones
    • IPAs (American tradition): just because this is what Americans do
  18. officerbill

    officerbill Devotee (453) Feb 9, 2019 New York
    Society Trader

    It's one of my favorites, but distributor didn't carry it in 2018. I've picked up two 6's and a 1.5L bottle

    Didn't have 2018, but this year's is less “piney” and the hops come through on the back of the tongue and the swallow. It's a little sweeter than previous years and there seems to be some licorice I didn't notice before.

    Celebration didn't really hit the spot with me and I wasn't really impressed with Mad Elf, or Bell's this year. I have Great Lakes, St. Bernardus, and N'ice in the fridge. I'll pick up a Middle Ages Wizard's Winter and plenty of others as they hit the shelves here.
    Almost as much fun as sampling oktoberfests :beers:
  19. alucard6679

    alucard6679 Aspirant (229) Jul 29, 2012 Arizona

    SN Celebration
    Brooklyn Black Chocolate
    Deschutes Jubelale
    Anchor Christmas Ale
    Samuel Smith's Winter Warmer

    That's probably the top five that I always look forward to, there's others but I'll stay at five

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  20. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,374) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    If I could purchase Sam Adams Old Fezziwig as a standalone product I would be looking forward to that beer.

  21. Domingo

    Domingo Poo-Bah (2,637) Apr 23, 2005 Colorado

    GD's Hibernation for sure. It's my favorite winter seasonal. At least that I can get in my area.
    Cans just hit last week and it's as good as ever.
  22. bsp77

    bsp77 Poo-Bah (2,265) Apr 27, 2008 Minnesota

    I was thinking of trying that again. Been many years...
    Bitterbill likes this.
  23. denver10

    denver10 Poo-Bah (2,907) Nov 17, 2010 New Mexico

    Odell's Isolation Ale.
  24. Ronmarley1

    Ronmarley1 Devotee (471) Jan 20, 2014 Ohio
    Society Trader

    Great Lake’s Blackout Stout (just dropped)
    Fat Head’s Pimp my Sleigh (next week)
    Three Floyd’s Alpha Klaus (just dropped)
  25. MistaRyte

    MistaRyte Zealot (530) Jan 14, 2008 Virginia

    Troegs Mad Elf and Hardywood Gingerbread Stout
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  26. afterexile

    afterexile Initiate (125) Nov 29, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Hardywood Gingerbread ! Now there's a good one. I could not find any last year for some reason. Hopefully this year. Especially their BB Gingerbread Stout
  27. KPlen

    KPlen Initiate (29) Apr 19, 2017 Colorado

    Colorado Native Winterfest.
  28. Casterbridge

    Casterbridge Disciple (374) Mar 26, 2010 Connecticut

    Not that easy to find by me anymore, but Full Sail Wassail is one I look forward to.
    Genuine and scream like this.
  29. hopsputin

    hopsputin Poo-Bah (1,999) Apr 1, 2012 New Jersey

    Sam Smith Winter Warmer
    Souther Tier 2xmas
    Jubelale!!! (my favorite)
    Serpent's Stout
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  30. ChangSing

    ChangSing Initiate (153) May 5, 2013 Illinois

    Probably Alpha Klaus, Celebration and Anderson Valley Winter Solstice. What I also love about all of these posts, is that these are all great beers you can get any day of the week in the winter. Not all great beer requires you to stand in line for 8 hrs.
    SWChi, JediMasterLenin and jlitt8276 like this.
  31. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,428) May 30, 2005 Michigan

    I'll seek out Deschutes Jubelale, and I usually have to drive 25 miles to Kalamazoo to find it. Other than that one, I'll likely buy a series of the rich, malty Christmas ales, but not the sweet spices version.
  32. LocalBeerGuy

    LocalBeerGuy Aspirant (201) Apr 17, 2018 Saskatchewan (Canada)

    I can say I have had few hoilday and winter beers but that was like few years back but I did like some like the clowns shoes advent calander imperial stout at 10% from few years back.
  33. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (6,831) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society Trader

    +1 to that!
  34. afterexile

    afterexile Initiate (125) Nov 29, 2005 Pennsylvania

    I see a lot of people are giving a shout out to Deschutes Jubelale. I have been wanting to try that one for a while & now that Deschutes is finally in my neck of the woods I hope to find it soon.
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  35. bsp77

    bsp77 Poo-Bah (2,265) Apr 27, 2008 Minnesota

    It is really good, it is basically an English Strong Ale with a big, spicy hop balance. Roasty, fruity and spicy.
  36. puck1225

    puck1225 Poo-Bah (2,551) Aug 14, 2015 Texas

    Sam Adam’s Old Fezziwig.
  37. smbslt

    smbslt Champion (878) Dec 26, 2010 Illinois

    Had Revolution's Fistmas last weekend. Felt too early but would rather have it fresh in November than wait. The higher abv selections I'll wait until December.
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  38. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (4,409) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Society Trader

    To me, "winter warmer" means BBA stouts such as BCBS and variants.

    Also, if they ever distribute it again, Sam Adams Merry Maker Gingerbread Stout, incredible even if you're not a gingerbread fan.
    dukeandduke likes this.
  39. ScaryEd

    ScaryEd Poo-Bah (2,373) Feb 19, 2012 New Hampshire

    Old Fezziwig.

    The fact that I'll purchase a 12 pack SOLELY for 3 bottles of this shows my dedication.
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  40. rgordon

    rgordon Meyvn (1,018) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    The N'ice Chouffe was ahead of the curve of Winter brews and still is a really fine beer.