Anchor Our Special Ale 2008

Anchor Our Special Ale 2008

Rated 3.786 by BeerPals
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Brewed by Anchor Brewing Company

San Francisco, CA, United States

Style:  Spiced Beer

5.5% Alcohol by Volume

Availability of this beer is unknown

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The brewers of Anchor Steam® Beer are proud to announce the release of our thirty-fourth annual Christmas Ale. Every year since 1975 the brewers at Anchor have brewed a distinctive and unique Christmas Ale, which is available 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.

ID: 33118 Last updated 15 years ago Added to database 15 years ago

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Overall Rank601
Overall Percentile98.9
Style Rank5 of 1270
Style Percentile99.6
Lowest Score3.2
Highest Score4.6
Average Score3.917
Weighted Score3.786
Standard Deviation0.382

Rating Distribution

Beer vs Style

18 Member Reviews

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  • KINGER 2328 reviews
    rated 3.6 13 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 7 | Mouthfeel: 7 | Flavor: 7 | Overall: 7

    February 2011 Vertical Tasting including '10,'09,'08,'07: All four bottles fared very similar with the exception that the spice influence faded as expected from most recent to oldest. The 2010 had a tangy after taste while nutmeg and ginger were prominent. 2009 showed a vanilla undertone. 2008 was my favorite and had very little spice. 2007 was most aromatic but the taste was severely muted. Not worth aging overall.

  • OH6GDX 8392 reviews
    rated 3.2 13 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 6 | Mouthfeel: 6 | Flavor: 6 | Overall: 6

    Bottled (2008 vintage). Deep rubyish brown, close to black, colour, mediumsized beigeish brown head, that leaves some lace. Aroma is spices, caramel malts and quite strong licorice and coffeeish notes. Flavour is spices, caramel malts, mild leather as well as licorice. Feels like it needs a bit mellowing to get more balanced.

  • SUDSMCDUFF 3781 reviews
    rated 3.6 14 years ago

    Aroma: 10 | Appearance: 8 | Mouthfeel: 6 | Flavor: 6 | Overall: 6

    this year seems darker .. Sat 12/06/08; drank while watching arsenal vs wigan .. .. lots of sweet pine, cherry, fruity all spice aromas .. big pretty head, impressive .. . a bit over spiced, would age well .. 5 years would be good .. . very x-masy, relaxs me ..

  • GGUZMAN 2 reviews
    rated 4.2 15 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 9 | Mouthfeel: 8 | Flavor: 9 | Overall: 8

    I had this one at a fondue restaurant, they served it at about 60 F temperature wich made it quite interesting. It poured a dark ruby color almost black. The head was brown and creamy. The odor was subtle with some cinammon, it reminded me to gingerbread adn fruitcake. In the flavor I noticed notes of pine that reminded me a lot to christmas, some hops towards the end. The only drawback was that I had it in March, so the season was not exactly right.

  • MMMMBEER 1119 reviews
    rated 3.8 15 years ago

    Aroma: 9 | Appearance: 7 | Mouthfeel: 7 | Flavor: 8 | Overall: 7

    Dark brown with ruby red elements when held up to light. a thick brown rests on top. Aroma is nice, cinnamon cloves, cream cheese icing, chocolate and possibly pine. That is a uber wicked smell complicated and inviting. Taste doesn’t disappoint either sweet to a mild sour, lots of clove, pine, vanilla so many flavours. Fresh backing mild amounts of sweet chocolate. This is very drinkable you can sip on it for hours a pick out different flavours constantly. 9.87 thumbs up for this year’s addition.

  • PFOXYJOHN 676 reviews
    rated 4.1 15 years ago

    Aroma: 9 | Appearance: 8 | Mouthfeel: 8 | Flavor: 8 | Overall: 8

    A Christmas Day treat thanks to bluesandbarbq. Tasted side-by-side with a cellared 2007. Poured a gorgeous clear mahogany color with a small tan head and smaller, tighter bubbles than the 2007. Fruitcake aroma; figs, molasses, nutmeg, and clove. Medium-bodied, round smooth mouthfeel and low carbonation. Flavors of roasted malt, molasses and allspice. Somewhat thin and lightly bitter finish.

  • PHILBERTGODPHRY 142 reviews
    rated 3.2 15 years ago

    Aroma: 5 | Appearance: 7 | Mouthfeel: 8 | Flavor: 6 | Overall: 6

    Thanks to bluesandbarbq for this one. I disagree with the name of this beer. I found it to not be very "special" at all. It tasted o.k. but I was expecting much more. I'm sure I will try another one in '09 if I come across one but I'm not going to hunt one down.

  • BEERCRONIC 895 reviews
    rated 4.3 15 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 9 | Mouthfeel: 8 | Flavor: 9 | Overall: 9

    Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Smoothly poured out this latest version into my Affligem glass. It poured in total silence, flowed so smooth. Dark brown with obvious reddish hues, so-so sized brown head with really good retention. Immediate wafting aromas of gingerbread, mild pine, medicinal scents, cookie dough found in pails sold for fundraising, cola, background milk chocolate - wow - what a blend! And all that stuff is found in the mild aroma. The taste follows the same standard: mellow but packed with goodness. Nutmeg, gingerbread cookies, dull chocolate, toasted malts, mild and well portioned pine, tangy citrus hops (orange, peach, lemon in order of strength of impression). Finishes quite spicy. Medium to medium full bodied, nice soft carbonation, lasting spicy and bitter (where was this before?) aftertaste. Man, this stuff went down so smoothly. Incredibly well balanced. A massive improvement over the 2007 which wasn't bad but just odd. I find nothing wrong with this beer at all except that I have no more in my glass.

  • JLOZIER 671 reviews
    rated 3.5 15 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 5 | Mouthfeel: 7 | Flavor: 8 | Overall: 7

    This came in a holiday beer sampler. For a spiced ale, I was expecting a bit more, well, spice. The subdued spicing would have made this a beer that I could have drank several of in a row. There were definately ginger and brown sugar in there, but they were more peripheral than I was expecting, which actually turned out to be rather pleasant. This is the first time I've tried the holiday beers from Anchor; I would be interested in seeing what next year brings.

  • SLOWRUNNER77 5682 reviews
    rated 4.2 15 years ago

    Aroma: 9 | Appearance: 8 | Mouthfeel: 8 | Flavor: 9 | Overall: 8

    a slightly different recipe each year, but pretty much the same beer. more orange peel some years, more ginger others, but it's always good! Pours dark, almost stout like, but for the ruby lacing and head. Smells like Christmas (no other way to put it). It's always as the top of my list during the holidays. One of the best spiced ales I've ever had (every year) not just the 2008 version.

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