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BC Beer – Lighthouse Winter Ale

March 15, 2010

The first seasonal beer from Victoria’s Lighthouse brewery is a winter ale. I’m not sure which beer they started to bottle first. Whether it was the Winter Ale or the, also, new Riptide Pale Ale (which is quite good). Either way Lighthouse now bottles some of their beers in, rather cute, stubby style bottles. I like them.

Lighthouse Winter Ale is brewed in the English tradition of the “winter warmer”. We begin with a generous quantity of Maris Otter malt, enriched with the finest UK specialty malts, producing a luscious, silky-sweet character and striking copper/amber hue. German Noble hops provide a delicate balance on the palate, and add spicy complexity to a predominantly malty aroma. Mashed at a slightly higher temperature, and cellar-aged at the brewery, this full bodied, rich, and warming ale is the perfect companion through the chill of the holiday season.

That’s a pretty good commercial description. It’s also one of the few that I agree with. It pours a deep copper/amber with flecks of red. A great white head that leaves some pretty lacing on the glass. The nose is dominated with malty aromas – bread, toffee, caramel, and hints of spice. The balance leans towards the malt, as it should, with the hops showing up at the finish for a nice little bite. It’s smooth and rich, but too rich as the six-pack has no problems disappearing quickly once it’s opened. A real winner from Lighthouse.

Lighthouse make solid beers, so I wasn’t surprised to find that the trend continued with their Winter Ale. Pick this up next year when it’s released again. I know I will be.

Rating: Good
Style: Winter Warmer
ABV: 6.5%
Serving Temp: 10-14ºC


From → Beer, Seasonal

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