#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Day 12

DECADANCE (2015) by ALESMITH

10% Belgian Amber


Pours a lovely deep chestnut brown with a small creamy head…and the aroma matches the tastes…all toffee,malty goodness and a little boozy banana with a slight drying bitterness on the finish…a lovely,satisfying and complex beer …
…and so that’s it,all over for another year

So,2016 has been a really challenging year for the world in “real” life but in the beer world it’s been it’s been a cracker,some great beers being produced,the beer world seemingly getting smaller as overseas beers that have been difficult to get in the past becoming easier (slightly) to get and the British beer scene/breweries going from strength to strength even challenging,and in some cases,surpassing the “big boys” from over the pond.

On a personal note,I too have had a great beer journey through 2016,had some great beery adventures in Aberdeen (Brewdog AGM),Newcastle (Craft Beer Calling) and Barcelona (weekend with SWMBO,so not as much fun ๐Ÿ˜‰),met a load of people I had only  previously “met” through social media (and every single one was a pleasure to met in real life, proof of the old adage the “beer folk are good folk”)  who I now class as real friends and even a shambolic guest appearance on the now sadly departed Beer o’clock show podcast and a regular appearance ๐Ÿ˜‰ on its evolution into the excellent Hopinions podcast co presented by the captain of the this fine ship Steve (@beeroclockshow) and  his new partner in crime Martin (@mjpo007).

So all that’s left is for me to wish you and your families a happy,healthy and beery 2017

…..and see you next year for #12BeersOfXmas 2017!!!


#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Days 9,10,11 megapost

Day 9

LORELEI by OMNIPOLLO/SIREN CRAFT


10.5% Imperial Porter 

Quite simply one of the best stout/porter’s I’ve tasted and I think my Stout/Porter of the year!…all the flavours are there wrapped in a luxurious mouthfeel,and not overly sweet (though it is a dessert type). If you thought Anagram was great this takes it up a notch,like a dessert in a glass,just wish I had more…if you see it don’t hesitate to pick it up (you can thank me later๐Ÿ˜‰)
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DAY 10

MERRY CHRISTMAS & HAPPY NEW YEAR 2016 by ANCHOR BREWING


6.5% winter warmer

The now traditional #12beersofxmas Xmas day beer for me,and brewed to a different recipe every year…not sure of this year’s attempt though,not much spice and mor like a poor black IPA … a bit disappointing so hoping for a better beer for next year from them

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DAY 11

ABSTRAKT : 20 by BREWDOG


14.2 % Barleywine
Full of chocolate and vanilla notes,smooth and hides the abv superbly well…got another of these so will look forward to seeing how it develops with some more age on it.

#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Day 8

REINDEER FUEL by AMAGER BRYGHUS


10% Barleywine
I have to admit I’m a bit of a fanboy of this brewery and have enjoyed all I’ve had from them so I had high expectations of this one.

This is the first of an ongoing annual release from them that will be different each year until they’ve perfected the recipe and this one proves a solid start.

Sweet toffe aromas escape from the bottle on opening and pours a lovely deep red with a small fluffy white head atop.

It’s very Malt forward,with candy sugar sweetness,tempered with some spice and a little bitterness at the backend. It’s certainly not the finished article but it’s a great base to build on..I look forward to seeing where they go with this one next year

#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Day 7

GOOD KING HENRY SPECIAL RESERVE 2013 by OLD CHIMNEYS BREWERY


11% Russian Imperial Stout

Day 6 and I’ve made it to the halfway point and if you’re still reading these you haven’t got many more to endure!

I’ve had this one a while now so thought it was high time to get into it (couldn’t wait any longer๐Ÿ˜‰).

Straight from the cap pop I could tell I was in for a treat,with the oak and berries aroma seeping out the top.

It pours into a deep black holding up a small tan head with the aromas intensifying . The luxurious taste is provided with a slightly oily mouthfeel,but full of dark fruits,some chocolate and vanilla and a slight edge off the oak.

This annual beer release is eagerly awaited each year and it’s easy to see why…a really classy beer.

#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Day 6ย 

BOURBON BA TRIPEL by CLOUDWATER


10% Belgian Tripel

A huge bottle tonight to get through tonight…and I’m so glad because this one is superb!

The cap popped quite explosively and I feared the worst (gusher!) but I should have known Cloudwater would know what they are doing and the rising bubbles soon died back in the bottle without breaching.

The aroma out of the bottle was an inviting mix of vanilla and bourbon whips just intensified in the glass. It poured a delicious dark chestnut with a small off white head that stays all the way down to the bottom of the glass.

This really is a delicious example of the style with the added warmth from the bourbon barrel ageing,its perfectly balanced against the vanilla sweetness you get with a tripel without pushing it over the edge further and hides the abv remarkably well too.

Did I say it was a big bottle?…not big enough I say!

#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Day 5

EMBRASSE by BROUWERIJ DE DOCHTER van de KORENAAR


Belgian strong ale – 9%
Another big bottle and this was in line to feature last year but for some reason got subbed out so this year is its chance to shine in the spotlight…

Very little aroma on popping the cap and not much more when in the glass.

Pours a lovely dark chestnut brown with a light magnolia head,it really does look a lovely drink in the glass.

Unfortunately that’s where the glowing words end for me I’m afraid…it’s malty,full of dark fruits with a slight sweetness and a little booze banana but it’s all a bit subdued,nothing really grabbed me and made me want to go back in…it’s not a bad beer just a bit underwhelming 

#12BeersOfXmas 2016

Day 4

ENJOY AFTER 07.04.16 by STONE BREWING


1/3 of the way through this year’s endeavour and the first non stout to make an appearance is an IPA,with Brettanomyces added at bottling,and a nice big bottle too ๐Ÿ˜‰

First thing to say it’s lively on the pour…and when I say lively I mean as lively as a really lively thing.I thought I’d poured carefully but the head just kept producing,leaving with me a proper #scullionpour .

The beer is clear,with the funkiness you would expect from the Brett. There’s not a big hop flavour to this and not a huge bitterness,a decent beer but with the Brett added you can never really guess how it’s going to turn out or when it’s the best to open (apart from the after date obvs ). Interesting nonetheless