Thursday, November 13, 2008

Anchor Brewing Co: Christmas Ale 2008

Merry Christmas beer drinkers! Wait, it's not Christmas. It's not even Thanksgiving. Well it doesn't matter as Anchor Brewing Co. releases it's Christmas Ale (a.ka. "Our Special Ale") in November. It's a new year, there's a new tree on the bottle, and we have a new beer.

You may remember that I drank a magnum of the 2007 ale in January of this year.

Also remember that each year Anchor changes the recipe of this winter warmer to spice things up. Not surprisingly the taste is similar. However there are a few noticeable changes.
First, this beer it a lot lighter in color. While the lighting in the picture does not quite pick it up, the beer is almost a bright red with a dark center. (click on picture: see bottom of the glass. Sorry, I'm not a photographer). Last year's brew was a lot darker. Also there is a thinner mouthfeel, more of a citrus taste, and a very very bitter coffee aftertaste. While the citrus and coffee flavors were present in '07 I feel they have been ramped up in '08.

You really can't go wrong with this beer no matter how much they tinker with it. Always enjoyable. May your upcoming holidays be warm and filled with beer. Cheers.


Robyn said...

Where do you get the magnums?

Mattie said...

Thanks for the question Robyn. We're always willing to help readers get their hands on large amounts of tasty beer.
Availability depends on where you live. If you live in Northern California you shouldn't have much problem getting the magnums from local grocery stores or speciality shops. I've seen them at Whole Foods, local co-operatives, and even corner liquor stores.
Since the Christmas Ale is only brewed during the early winter months you don't have to go to the Brewery located in Potrero Hill, San Francisco to get a fresh bottle. (Although I suggest scheduling a trip).
If you're out of state, I also know Beverages and More will ship bottles to most locations(depending on state liquor laws) via their website: Cheers.