In this winter beer blog, we are going to get into another beer from Anchor Brewery. It is this year’s version of their Christmas Ale. If you read my earlier beer blog posts on their beers, you know the history of this West Coast craft brewery. If you have not, please, read them to get to know this California craft brewery. Let us get into this Winter Ale.
It has a black color with constant tan color head. The smell has a sweet malty to light alcohol with a hint of chocolate to coffee notes. The taste of this medium body beer has a dry malty to slight coffee notes. The aftertaste has a dry malty with a hint of alcohol notes. It is a sipping beer
Here is a description from their website (www.anchorbrewing.com):
This is the forty-first annual Christmas Ale from the brewers at Anchor. It is sold only from early November to mid–January. The Ale’s recipe is different every year—as is the tree on the label—but the intent with which we offer it remains the same: joy and celebration of the newness of life. Since ancient times, trees have symbolized the winter solstice when the earth, with its seasons, appears born anew.
Our tree for 2015 is the Deodar Cedar (Cedrus deodara), better known as the California Christmas Tree. Native of the Himalayas, it takes its name from the ancient Sanskrit devadaru, meaning timber of the gods. This coniferous evergreen, with its gracefully droopy branches and blue-green needles, has been a San Francisco favorite for over 150 years.
The annual search for the perfect tree for our Christmas Ale label usually takes us far afield. This one began and ended with the search for a parking space near the Brewery! Getting out of the car, we couldn’t help but notice the way the late-afternoon sun danced amid the branches of two lovely Deodars just half a block from Anchor’s front door.
Our longtime label artist Jim Stitt—who has been drawing trees for us since 1975—loved “our” Deodars and, like us, was amused that they were about as local as local gets! His charming illustration evokes the radiant beauty of our arboreal neighbors as well as the spirit of the season. Cheers from the Anchor brewers!
Here is their website and twitter addresses:
In the end, this beer is like a tradition of going home for the holiday. I always pick up a six pack of this beer every year. I will be honest right now. I was not a fan of the last few years. I love this years. This year’s just blew me out of my mind. It is very well balance. I love the how it is pretty dry. I highly recommend this beer. Go get some! Drink it! Enjoy it! Metal it! \m/
Bill DJ Weiser