Monday, November 18, 2013

Holiday Ale

'tis the season for holiday ales and Two Roads Brewery recently released their second annual batch of the what the brewry refers to as a Bière De Noël.

The first release of  Holiday Ale was a small batch that was available for a only short time. It was not bottled and was served on tap at the brewery.  I was lucky enough to try it.

Holiday Ale was the very first beer I ever tasted from Two Roads last December. My impression of last year's batch placed the bar for my expectations of future releases pretty high. I wrote:

It pours a cloudy copper with a nice white head.  It was clean tasting with a hint of spice and a mildly bitter finish.  Very tasty and exceptionally drinkable.  

That begs the question, what do I think of this years Holiday Ale?

Holiday Ale (6.8% ABV) pours a bright clear copper with a quickly diminishing floof of white foam.

The aroma is mild but hints of malt and some spice are detected.

The taste is surprisingly clean and light. Malt dominates the palate with a whisper of spices lingering in the background. There is a gentle bittering effect to balance out the brew. The finish is clean with a slight metallic aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is medium with crisp carbonation. Nice to drink and easily quaffable.

I seem to recall last year's version to have a stronger malt flavor with more distinctive spice notes. That doesn't make this years batch bad, just different.

As to the aftertaste, a fellow beer enthusiast indicated that he detected no off flavors in the bottled version. I will have to suffer through a bottle to investigate this for myself. Inquiring minds want to know.

Overall: good

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