6 can’t miss winter seasonal beers

As the colder months approach, there’s a tendency to hunker down and enjoy everything the great indoors have to offer. If you’re a beer fan, your binge-watching and pajama-wearing wouldn’t be complete without the right brews to go with it. Winter beers tend to be heavier, darker, and much boozier than the lighter summer beers. Take a peek below at six winter seasonal beers you’ll want to brave the cold weather to acquire.

  1. Great Lakes Christmas Ale. The flavor of this ale evokes the holidays, with its notes of clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon. It is an excellent beer to have with hors d’oeuvres or other snack foods, with a bold aroma that can really get you in the holiday spirit. Alternatively, it can play nicely with holiday desserts like cookies or spice cake, due to its own sweetness.
  2. Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale. Sam Adams is perhaps best known for its flagship beer, Boston Lager, but the brewery also makes a wide variety of other beers, including seasonal specialties. This winter warmer has the flavors of dried fruit and spice combined with roasted and smoky notes for a well-balanced beer. Old Fezziwig’s dark reddish-brown color is completely in tune with the season, and at just a shade under 6% alcohol by volume, won’t look bad in the hands of your guests, either.
  3. Troegs Mad Elf. Hailed by some beer aficionados and experts as the world’s best holiday beer, this Belgian strong dark ale has a strong cherry taste with a hint of honey and cloves. It packs quite a punch, too, at 11% ABV. Troegs brews its beer in Hershey, Pa., and distributes to about 10 states and Washington, DC. If you see it for sale, do yourself a favor and try it.
  4. Boulevard Brewing Co. Rye-On-Rye. As its name suggests, this beer is a rye American strong ale, meaning rye is a major component of the grains used to make it. The “On-Rye” part of this comes in the aging process, whereby the beer sits in rye barrels. What develops there and then is a full, oak-centric flavor that is spicy, but with a hint of vanilla. At 12% ABV, it is quite the sipper.
  5. Deschutes Jubelale. This Oregon brewery’s beers aren’t available everywhere, but if you live in one of the 28 states where they are sold, you’re in luck. This festive beer uses six types of malts and five types of hops to create a robust flavor profile reminiscent of cocoa, toffee, and dried fruit.
  6. Southern Tier Old Man Winter. This brewery is well-known for their inventive and flavorful specialty and seasonal beers. This winter ale finds a place in beer nerd’s glasses year after year with its malty and nutty flavors of caramel and fruit. While that may sound ordinary for this style of beer, Southern Tier sets Old Man Winter apart from the pack with a hop-forward finish, offering a nice juxtaposition of sweet and dry flavors.

The Best Beers to Drink This Winter [Thrillist]

Winter Warmer [Beer Advocate]