Before you is a beer created by Anchor Brewing Company for the last 39 years. It's called Our Special Ale and this one was their 2013 edition. This offering is truly special each year as every batch is brewed using a different recipe from year to year.
Right out of the bottle the smell of Christmas spices is evident and the dark color of the beer alluring. I was expecting it to be lighter in color and more like an IPA since there was a Christmas tree on the label and I always associate IPAs with a fresh pine scent.
The aroma of Our Special Ale is so complex that it was hard for me to put a finger on all the different smells I was experiencing. I associated the smell with a variety of holiday treats you might enjoy, including gingerbread men, molasses cookies and the delicious caramel and toffee bars my aunt likes to make each Christmas. There was also a sweet maltiness that was noticeable as well.
This is beer form? Yes please.
The smell complimented the taste perfectly and it had a very rich and robust flavor with a sweet aftertaste. Nutmeg and gingerbread flavors stuck with me throughout the drinking process, while caramel and molasses also came through with each sip. Simply put, I loved Our Special Ale and couldn't get enough of it. Before I knew it my glass was empty and I was down to my last sip of this delicious beer.
One thing is for certain though. I will be drinking this beer this time again next year.
Anchor's Our Special Ale is only sold from November to mid-January each year and has an ABV of 5.5%. I highly suggest it to any beer lover looking for something new to try or anyone who loves the aroma and taste of holiday spices and Christmas cookies.
Phil tested, Phil approved for your holiday enjoyment