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Rating: 4.0/5 (1 vote cast)

Beer Profile

  • Brewery: Anchor Brewing Company
  • Website:
  • Country: United States
  • State: California
  • Style: Winter Ale / Warmer
  • Malts:
  • Hops:
  • ABV: 5.5%
  • IBUs:
  • Tasting Notes:
  • Preferred Glass: Optic Pint
  • Food Pairing:
  • PHM Grade: B+

Anchor Christmas Ale 2006

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Well it’s Christmas Eve, 2010. Just 36 hours from now, Christmas will have come and gone. The extra ham or turkey will now go between two pieces of bread and the mashed potatoes and Jello salad will be nibbled ‘til they’re gone. So with the holiday season’s end in site, I wanted to make sure I sampled this Christmas brew before it was too late.

Last year, right about this time, my journey into the world of craft beer began in earnest. With one of my first great purchases (that included 2009 Surly Darkness among others), the fine store’s purveyor threw in an extra for me. This bottle of Anchor Christmas Ale, aged for three years at the time, was from his personal cellar and he was more than generous to part with a single.

The holiday season seems to be all about surprises and this brew followed suit. A bursting head was solid, almost styrofoam, barely swaying with the swirl of the glass. It settled in after a few, to a nice half finger, light tan covering the rich, earthy brown like a fleece blanket. There were huge scents of malt coming from the glass, mixed with slight hints of brown sugar. A slightly sweet liqueur smell, root beer and vanilla made me eager to sip. The sweet liqueur smell (I’m a novice with spirits) was definite on the taste, creating an almost candy-like quality. The roasted malts were there as well, followed by an earthy, bark-like, slightly bitter finish. Mouthfeel was great, very smooth, but balanced with a carbonation in a mysterious way. Its a heavy brew, bigger than it appears at the outset and lingering in a bold way.

Note: Anchor sells an optic pint for their Christmas Ale and while I discovered that fact a bit too late, I did my best to imitate their serving choice.

Anchor Christmas Ale 2006, 4.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating

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