While the Christams season might be in the rear view window, numerous winter lagers and Christmas ales can still be found on the shelves. These 6 brews deserve to be enjoyed with an icy mug and a warm fire.
Stone Brewery (Escondido, CA) – Enjoy By IPA
Double IPA 9.4% ABV Beer Advocate – 97
Fresh is the word to describe Stone’s newest brew. A very smooth golden IPA. Releases have been to limited markets in order to keep the beer as fresh as possible. From the brewery to the retailer in roughly 7 days, giving you 4 weeks to enjoy a fresh IPA. The fourth batch is Enjoy By 2/15/13 in 10 areas throughout the country (info available on Stone’s website www.stonebrewing.com). This is one I am hoping to get my hands on in the Philly area before 2/15/13!
Bell’s Brewery (Kalamazoo, MI) – Hopslam Ale
Double IPA 10% ABV Beer Advocate -100
This is similar to the Stone Enjoy By, but a little more complex and hopefully available in your area! A golden orange IPA balanced by honey to sweeten the bitter hops. Drink in moderation or you might end up Hopslammed!!
Rogue Ales (Newport, OR) – Yellow Snow IPA
American IPA 6.5% ABV
This IPA gives more than just a laugh from the name/picture. It is milder than the Double IPA’s above coming in at 6.5% alcohol. In light of the lower alcohol content, this brew is well balanced can be enjoyed in many occasions.
*Disclaimer- we do not endorse writing your name in the snow in public*
Terrapin Beer Co (Athens, GA) – Moo-Hoo Chocolate Milk Stout
Milk Stout 6% ABV
What is Christmas time without some Milk for Santa? And not your basic skim milk, this is the adult Yoo-hoo! Chocolate smell and taste dominates this beer. It is not an overly thick beer as you might think hearing “milk stout.” Not a very complex beer like the IPAs, giving a smooth and creamy taste.
Tröegs Brewing Company (Hershey, PA) – Mad Elf
Belgium Strong Dark Ale 11% ABV
Although it is probably a slim chance you’ll find this still on the shelf, it’s worth mentioning in case you come across an Elf. This is one winter release that flies off the shelves and for good reason. I brought a bomber to the Fire & Ice Xmas party and was greeted at the door by 5 new friends hoping for a glass! This is a dark ale yet has a sweet cherry note. Neither the sweet nor spice are overpowering making for a mild yet strong holiday spiced ale.
Brouwerij Huyghe (Belgium) – Delirium Noël
Belgium Strong Dark Ale 10% ABV
A rich and complex reddish brown beer with a strong spice flavor. This is the Christmas release of the much lighter Delirium Tremens. A good choice on a cold day to warm your soul with the higher alcohol content.