Anderson Valley Brewing Co – Winter Solstice winter warmer

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Style: Winter Warmer

Country: USA

ABV: 6.9%

Score: 2.5 of 5

I’ve never been the biggest fan of Anderson Valley. I am unsure if they use some sort of proprietary malt but most of their offerings taste annoyingly similar. Most of the ones I’ve had, with the exception of the gose, have an overly malty, caramely and sweet feel to them, regardless of the style.

Unfortunately, Winter Solstice is not the exception. It pours a hazy, burnt orange with about an finger of head which dissipates fairly quickly. The thin lacing left behind also disappears quickly leaving nearly nothing but a small ring around the edge of the glass. I am pretty sure I’m supposed to get spices on the nose, but I only get vanilla. And lots of it! There is also some sweet caramely maltness and toffee notes. But mostly vanilla.

This beer is very sweet. It’s all vanilla in the middle front and back. Towards the end I was able to detect some serious brown sugary sweetness to boot, but that’s about it. Reminds me of sweet bread and caramel. The mouthfeel is decent with enough carbonation to make it feel like beer and not a sticky cocktail.

Sadly, as most Anderson Valley beers, this seems muddled and without any real depth. There are so many better examples of this style out there that this seems a bit pointless.

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