The Session #10–Winter Seasonal Beers

The SessionWith great timing for today’s Session topic–Winter Seasonal Beers–I have a beautiful 3 inches of snow on the ground.

Last night, I spent the last few moments of daylight sledding outside with my two boys before they did homework and watched How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Sunday we picked out and decorated our Christmas tree. Then we sipped homemade egg nog while watching National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. There are Christmas carols in the background. I’ve got plans materializing for our Christmas Eve festivities. I’ve got all the ingredients lined up for making peanut brittle and fudge and Christmas cookies and…

….And it must be time for those winter seasonals.

Honestly, I don’t drink a lot of ’em, because sometimes the spiced versions are a little overbearing. I do, however, go for the Russian Imperials, old ales, Scotch ales and barley wines around this time (and year-round) and especially look forward to the seasonal releases of these styles from some breweries. Not long ago, I enjoyed Brooklyn Brewery‘s Black Chocolate Stout, which was delightful.

This past week, I did track down two “holiday” beers: Boulevard Brewing Company‘s Nut Cracker Ale and Goose Island Brewing Company‘s Christmas Ale.

Boulevard’s Nut Cracker Ale and GI’s Christmas Ale

As it turns out, I liked them in that order. It’s not that I didn’t care for the Goose Island; it’s just that it seemed like a great beer to drink year-round–a hoppy American brown that would be ideally suited for a burger on the grill stuffed with bleu cheese. The Nut Cracker, however, delivered the depth of flavor I was hoping for, with a subtle spiciness that was not at all overdone. Perfect for the chill in the air characteristic to an early December in Iowa.

Tasty beers. Don’t hesitate to check ’em out (don’t forget the BCS–also wonderful).

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Many thanks to Ted at Barley Vine for hosting this month’s Session.

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4 Responses to The Session #10–Winter Seasonal Beers

  1. beerdoctor says:

    Have you tried Penn Brewing Company’s St. Nikolas Bock Bier? My candidate for Holiday beer of the year.
    The Beer Doctor

  2. Wilson says:

    I can’t say as I have.

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