Review Date 7/20/2008 Last Updated 12/30/2014
Breckenridge Christmas Ale is definitely
heavy on the malt, with notes of chewy caramel and hints of chocolate.
Grassy hops balance out the finish with a touch of aroma and spice, and a
subtle alcohol burn (this one weighs in around 7.4% alcohol by volume).
They call this a winter warmer, and I can see that. In some ways, it reminds me of a souped-up Winterhook. However you classify it, it’s worth trying, and a refreshing malty departure from the steady parade of spiced beers that show up every Christmas.
Sipping a glass of the beer in July, the nose seems to have more of a malty dark fruit aroma. This is a full bodied beer, with a thick luxurious texture that bathes the tongue with dark malt flavors. A bit of chocolate, a hint of caramel, toasted nuts, raisin, and spice cake are all present. Some herbal, slightly minty hops make themselves known underneath and add a slightly bitter buzz in the finish, but they’re a little less prominent than when the beer was young. I think the dark malt flavors, especially the nuttiness, really become apparent in the finish, too, and there’s a definite alcohol warmth, as well.
I think I like this one even better after eight months in the DBR. Breckenridge Christmas Ale is a decidedly welcome beer for your Christmas enjoyment-whether you’re celebrating it in July or December.
Update 12/30/2014: Here we are again, another holiday and another holiday favorite, this time while watching football on a late Sunday evening.
Breckenridge Christmas Ale pours to a dark mahogany color with a minimal creamy head formation and a delicious dark nutty malt nose. Taking a sip I get wonderful, cookie-like, toasty nutty maltiness and light chocolate with a hint of candied fruit, raisin and a dry gentle hop bitterness in the finish. About average in price at $9.99 for six, and very, very delicious.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.