The Brewski Report Reviews Harpoon’s Winter Warmer Spiced Ale
File Date: 11.28.2010
File Name: Christmas Crowd Pleaser
The Beer: Winter Warmer
Type: Spiced Ale
Stats: 5.9% ABV
Brewer: Harpoon Brewery
Web Site: www.harpoonbrewery.com
State/Country of Origin: MA, USA
Brewer Info: Harpoon Founders Dan Kenary & Rich Doyle started the Harpoon Brewery in 1986 because—like today—we loved beer and wanted more good choices. While traveling in Europe after college, we drank many wonderfully diverse, fresh, local beers. We also saw firsthand how important local breweries were to their communities. After our travels, we asked each other, “why not bring great beer and that sense of community to New England?” That was the genesis of the Harpoon Brewery. Twenty years later we still revel in making great beer and sharing that joy with our friends and neighbors. The success that we have had running Harpoon is due entirely to the wonderful employees who brew, package, warehouse, sell, deliver, and market our beer and you, the people who drink Harpoon. We hope that our sense of gratitude is reflected in both the quality of the beer and the spirit of fun and enjoyment surrounding our beer and breweries.
Brewer Brand Hype: Winter Warmer was Harpoon’s first seasonal beer. It was designed to be enjoyed during the holiday season.
When you bring a glass of this dark copper ale to your lips to take your first sip you will notice the aroma of cinnamon. There is no aromatic hop added that might overpower the distinct spice scent. The medium body of this beer is formed from caramel and pale malts. These create enough body to support the spices without making the beer excessively rich. Bittering hops are added to counter the sweetness of the malt and spice. The finish of the beer is a blend of cinnamon and nutmeg. The combination of these two spices results in a balanced, pumpkin-pie flavor.
Label: Brewed since 1988, the flavor of Cinnamon and nutmeg in Harpoon Winter Warmer make this full-bodied, rich ale a classic holiday treat. Enjoy!
The Brewski Review: Ever watch ‘A Christmas Story’? I’m sure many won’t argue that it’s a true classic. What’s so endearing about this film is it’s period. It harkens back to a time when life was more simple. The only source of information was the nightly news and the local paper. You could eat whatever you wanted without fear of getting cancer. People took ownership of their actions and didn’t sue at the drop of a hat. Holiday shopping wasn’t so commercialized and over-hyped. There was no ‘Doorbuster Deals’ to trample people over. Kids played with Tinker Toys, Lincoln Logs and dolls. No expensive electronics. People enjoyed each other since they weren’t so detracted by cell phones and MP3 players. Life was slower than it is now: muscle your way to work and put in 10 or 11 hours, race home and shuttle the kids to their far-flung sports and hobbies, eat dinner on the run, come home, do laundry, go to bed, get up and repeat the process all over again. I know it won’t happen but American needs to revert back to these simple times. Then we could unravel our complicated lives and enjoy a nice cold one. This Winter Warmer is a nice choice: good taste with a nice seasonal flavoring. I’ve had better spice beers and will probably have even better in the future but this is worthy of drinking again. Enjoy the Holidays! Maybe a few of these beers will help tame the stress that goes along with all the crowd fighting you’ll be doing.
Drinkability: Sure. Good Beer.
Appearance: Amber color with a high head.
The Buds: Nice seasonal flavor but not too overpowering.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.75 caps out of 5.