344. Hitachino Nest Celebration Ale 2004

344. Hitachino Nest Celebration Ale 2004

I decided to try this beer because Ali liked it (blog entry coming soon). I picked up a 12 oz. bottle at Downtown Wine and Spirits. The label says "Ale Brewed With Spices: coriander, orange peel, nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla beans". Although not technically the proper glassware I served this in one of my new Duvel Tulips because I really wanted to use one.

Celebration Ale is a Winter Warmer. Many, but not all, winter warmers are brewed with spices though these spices will vary depending on the brewer. The spices used in those that are tend to be evocative of the holiday season. English winter warmers are unspiced. BJCP Style Guide.

Appearance (4.5): Pours a hazy almost opaque amber-brown with a massive fluffy beige head. Spices used in brewing can be seen as clumps floating in the beer. Some of these get caught in the head giving the appearance that spices have been sprinkled on top.

Smell (4.0): Spices are very noticable. There are notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, orange, vanilla and alcohol.

Taste (3.0): This beer is very spicy with a sweet base. I can taste vanilla, citrus, orange, and cinnamon. Bitterness is low. Alcoholic warmth is evident in the finish. The sweetness in this beer isn't well balanced. Maybe increasing the bitterness would improve things.

Mouthfeel (4.0): Celebration Ale is full-bodied, smooth and creamy.

Drinkability (3.0): If this beer wasn't so sweet it would be much more drinkable.

Overall (3.6): This is a decent beer. The spices add some nice flavors, but in the end the beer is too damn sweet.

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