I wanted to try something new, and yeah, the name appealed to me. So did the price…about $4 for a 1pt, .9oz at WholeFoods.
Labeled as a English Xmas Ale with Spices and brewed by Ridgeway Brewing in the UK, I was afraid of being overwhelmed with cinnamon and cloves, but went for it anyways. The beer pours a clear amber brown with a moderate to high head and a malty and spicy aroma to it, very much what I’d expect from an English Brown. It pours clearer and with a stronger aroma than it’s style cousin, Newcastle.
I didn’t detect an overabundance of spices at the start, but they did come more into their own towards the end of the bottle, though they were never overpowering. The overall taste was very light and uninspired. While certainly a drinkable beer–I’d never say it was “bad”–I’d probably pass on this particular brew next time.
Two good points: Bottle and name are cute, eh? Santa jammed into a pickle jar will always put me in the holiday spirit! Also, though only 6% ABV, I would hesitate operating heavy machinery after just one bottle. Some beers hit me hard for some reason, and this is one of them.