Warsteiner 'Winter Special Edition' Ale

Warsteiner Winter Special Edition Ale 1
Warsteiner 'Winter Special Edition' Ale. 5.6% abv. Copper color. Thin ivory head that quickly recedes to a bubbly collar. Moderate retention and little lace. Nose of herbal dank spice, nutmeg, cloves. Aroma improves with light caramel as the temp rises. Front taste of light malt, brown sugar, treacle, woodsy back end. Aftertaste of light maple, earthy hops, coriander. Light body. Mouthfeel is cool, thin, slightly sticky.

I tasted this beer on two different days, and arrived at two very different conclusions. At the end of the first tasting, I noted that its aroma was unpleasant at first, becoming slightly better with the change in temp. However, upon a second tasting on a different day, the aroma was more enjoyable. Perhaps I had a bad bottle that first time.

The flavor profile includes dull spice notes that are surely present but never quite impress. Fortunately, the understated spice is elevated by the malty caramel taste. 

From my first tasting, which may have been from a compromised bottle, I thought that this beer was merely adequate compared to other winter/Xmas ales, and I suggested a "pass" on this beer. However, from my second tasting, more of the sweet malt backbone is present, along with an more enjoyable spice profile. It's still not a great beer, but my second (and third) tasting was a marked improvement. Mildly recommended.

NOTE: Photos are from both tastings.

From the brewery: 

"Rich with a warm finish. A seasonal, full-bodied winter beer with a warm and rich copper-red amber color. A satisfying malty taste sensation masterfully balanced with subtle hoppy bitterness. A perfect fit for celebrating the Winter season."
[source: warsteiner.us]

Warsteiner Winter Special Edition Ale 2

Warsteiner Winter Special Edition Ale 3

Warsteiner Winter Special Edition Ale 4

Warsteiner Winter Special Edition Ale 5

Warsteiner Winter Special Edition Ale 6