10 Great Winter Beers to Try Slideshow
December 8, 2011
Brooklyn Winter Ale, Brooklyn Brewery
This dark copper-colored seasonal offering from the ever-popular Brooklyn Brewery impresses with its bready, malty character. Made in the style of a Scottish ale, it's smooth and easy-drinking — a great beer to help remind you why you like winter when the holiday madness starts to set in.
Hibernation Ale, Great Divide Brewing
Intense, with strong notes of spice, it would be easy to make a case for staying inside with a tall glass of this dark English-style old ale throughout the cold winter months.
Doggie Claws, Hair of the Dog
This Portland brewery's potent seasonal sip is made in the style of an English barley wine. Face-scrunchingly bitter (in a good way) with big malts to match, it's a great brew to enjoy now or cellar for later.
Winter Session Ale, Peak Organic Brewing Company
Let's be honest, the stress of the holiday season can sometimes drive us to drink. Fortunately for craft beer fans, the Portland, Maine, brewery has this sessionable seasonal winter wheat ale (a follow up to their popular Summer Session). Striking a nice balance between toasty malts and a bright, pineapple flavor from the Citra hops, this a flavorful low-alcohol beer to shake the wintertime blues.
Christmas Ale, Brouwerij St. Bernardus
Get into the Christmas spirit with this dark brown seasonal selection from St. Bernardus. Velvety, with strong pear and apple flavors, the Belgian brewery's strong ale is a great sip-by-the-fireside option.
He'Brew Jewbelation, Shmaltz Brewing
The 14th anniversary edition of Saratoga Springs, N.Y.'s seasonal "chosen beer" is an homage to the number 14 — impressively featuring 14 varieties of hops and 14 different malts, and clocking in at 14 percent ABV.
Anchor Christmas Ale, Anchor Brewing
Like that mysterious present under the tree you can't wait to open, the San Francisco brewery's popular Christmas ale is an unexpected treat for fans year after year, because the recipe is never the same. What does remain consistent is that it rarely disappoints.
Santa's Private Reserve, Rogue Brewing
Can you hear them — those caroling hop-heads singing, "All I want for Christmas is Santa's Private Reserve... "? The Oregon brewery's dark, double-hopped beer starts rich and finishes with an appropriately piney, spruce-like flavor on the finish.
Celebration Ale, Sierra Nevada
This eagerly anticipated winter IPA from the Chico, Calif., craft brewery does the season proud with a well-matched mix of toasted malts and vibrant, citrusy hops.
Sleigh'r Dark Double Alt, Ninkasi Brewing Company
This rockin' holiday ale from the beloved Eugene, Ore., brewery is dark and malty, but with just the right punch of hoppy bitterness.