Posts Tagged christmas

Drink and be Jolly!

Green Flash Jolly FlashIf I haven’t mentioned it before, the cold weather holidays are my favorite time of year- if not for the pageantry, cooler temperatures and the time with family and friends, then for the seasonal beers released by breweries everywhere. Green Flash Brewing Company has come out with a beer that could not fail to get me into the holiday spirit: Green Flash Jolly Folly IPA (7.7% abv).

It poured deep golden with sudsy head sitting on top. Hoppy, spicy and piney aromas joined some fruity sweetness to remind me that the holiday season is upon us. As I moved my nose around the glass (something I have been experimenting with to get different aromas), the smell became somewhat malty. It tasted hoppy up front, with a hefty dose of strong floral flavors. A tropical frutiness came next, with a little spiciness. Moderate hoppiness took the drink into a middle that was medium-bodied and lightly carbonated. It finished happy, with only a little spice and some malts to smooth things out.

Overall a pretty dynamic holiday drink.



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Have a “Special” Christmas

Anchor 2014 Special Xmas AleIt has finally arrived! Christmas is here! Well, in a few days it will be here. There is just time enough to try this great addition to your holiday beer list: Anchor Brewing Merry Christmas & Happy New Year 2014, or simply, “Our Special Ale.” This is the 40th year running that Anchor Brewing has released their “Special Ale” and the 2014 edition will not disappoint.

It poured a deep dark brown that reminded me of maple syrup. It had a medium layer of fizzy tan head. The aromas beganAnchor Special Ale top with very rich caramel, followed by some roasted malt and some spiced fig and plum. The taste was surprisingly mild, though it quickly presented its caramely character. This was followed by the spice and raisin flavors. The malts came in like a wave washing over the middle of the drink, but the fizzy kick of the carbonation broke that up nicely. The malts carried through to the finish with a warm caramel aftertaste and a slight hint of the spices.

This was a very pleasant beer that is sure to warm you up. Though it was not tremendously dynamic, it will definitely remind me of the holidays from here on out. I cannot quite give it a 5, but as close to it as possible:


As with the holiday that came before it, please have a safe and very merry Christmas.

Eat, drink and be merry.

Merry Christmas!

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I’m Dreaming of a Red Christmas

AleSmith YuleSmithDecember is here and with it, comes my favorite holiday: Christmas! It must be up there on the list of favorite holiday seasons for the folks at AleSmith as well, as they have a semi-annual release called YuleSmith. The summer version is a huge double IPA, but in winter, it is an imperial red beast. Let’s get into it, shall we?

This one poured a rich, dark brown with tiny bubbles and creamy off-white head. It smelled quite hoppy, with a slight fruity sweetness hiding underneath. It tasted slightly hoppy at first, with some nice roasted malt flavor toward the middle. It had a great, smooth mouthfeel, until the hoppiness came back a little too strongly and took over from there. There were some interesting slightly fruity caramel notes on the finish, though I was left with the sensation that I had just had a mouthful of hops.YuleSmith top

For a beer that held such promise, I felt it relied a little too heavily on the hops. This surprised me, as it posts only 48 IBUs. I’m rating this one:


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