Anchor Our Special Ale 2011

Anchor Our Special Ale 2011

Rated 3.611 by BeerPals
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Brewed by Anchor Brewing Company

San Francisco, CA, United States

Style:  Spiced Beer

5.5% Alcohol by Volume

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The brewers at Anchor are pleased to announce the release of our thirty-seventh annual Christmas Ale. Every year since 1975 the brewers of Anchor Steam® Beer 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. Our tree for 2011 is the bristlecone pine. Found high atop California's White Mountains, bristlecones are among the oldest living things on the planet. Some date back nearly 5,000 years, to the dawn of the ancient art of brewing.

ID: 46256 Last updated 12 years ago Added to database 12 years ago

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Overall Rank1802
Overall Percentile96.6
Style Rank32 of 1270
Style Percentile97.5
Lowest Score3.7
Highest Score4.2
Average Score3.917
Weighted Score3.611
Standard Deviation0.214

Rating Distribution

Beer vs Style

6 Member Reviews

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  • OH6GDX 8392 reviews
    rated 3.7 11 years ago

    Aroma: 10 | Appearance: 7 | Mouthfeel: 6 | Flavor: 7 | Overall: 7

    Bottled (2011 vintage, from Alko, as MC & HNY 2011). Very deep ruby red colour, mediumsized brown head that leaves nice lace. Aroma is toffee, spices, some butter scotch and mild red wine like notes. Flavour is ashes, mild sour wooden notes as well as quite strong bitterness with raisins, plum and spices as well.

  • OIZNOP 431 reviews
    rated 4.0 12 years ago

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

    I could not let the yule tide season slip by without a review of the usual SF Christmas treat. The 2011 version of our favorite delectable has a nice big head off the bottle pour on top of the usual dark ruby red hue. Ginger and cinnamon aroma waft to the schnoz from the rich foam with notes of the same on the buds. Nice and smooth this year with a semi-dry hop finish. I have one sitting in my ham radio shack waiting to be guzzled. Hmmm...should I let it age???....LOL....

  • ORVALPLEASE 351 reviews
    rated 4.1 12 years ago

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

    I have had numerous tussles with the holiday ale from Anchor and I'd have to say that 2011 has been one of my favorites. My brother received a large bottle in a gift exchange and we ended up sharing it over the course of the day. Opened at room temperature - great head, foamy, rocky and tan. Very dark in color - nearly black. Huge bubble gum esters in the nose and also in the forefront on the first sip. Malty, dark fruit notes take over and a slight bitterness in the finish. I didn't detect nearly the amount of spice as in years past (especially the orange peel). A bit of a departure, but very good. Hoping to nab a few bottles at discount prices here after the holidays.

  • JERRYMORRISON 2130 reviews
    rated 3.7 12 years ago

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

    Deep ruby hued and black body, thin head with some lace. Flavors of chocolate, molasses, cinnamon and some very faint hints of dark fruit. Robust yet smooth, a nice winter offering from San Francisco.

  • CYBERCAT 11711 reviews
    rated 3.8 12 years ago

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

    Comes out of the tap an opaque slightly reddish dark brown, maybe you could call it sable, with a thin fine-bubbled tan head - but the thin could be an artifact of the pour. Malty aroma has subtle notes of chocolate, molasses and cloves. Scrumptious flavor is rather sweet but not cloying, with notes of molasses, malt and horehound. It's almost like drinking hard candy, except for the edgy, fizzy texture that lets you know this is beer. Happy Holidays!

  • SLOWRUNNER77 5682 reviews
    rated 4.2 12 years ago

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

    another year, another winner from Anchor. This has been one of my favorites for a decade, and the slight differences year to year never seem to dampen my enthusiasm. this uniquely spiced christmas-in-a-bottle beer is a little lighter on the orange peel than the last couple years, and is a touch lighter in feel. otherwise still delicious, full flavored, dark and robust yet light and refreshing. always in a class all it's own.

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