Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Otter Creek Winter Red Ale

Otter Creek Winter Red Ale

Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
Middlebury, Vermont

American Amber / Red Ale

5.50% ABV

Commercial Description:
Winter Red Ale has the traditional characteristics of a red ale with the addition of an ample amount of hops to create subtle bitterness and medium aroma. A perfect ale for a bitter winter evening.

General Pricing:
12 oz bottles: ~$7.00 6 pack, ~$27.00 case

This beer was in this years Christmas Beer Variety case at State Line Liquors. I have a always been impressed with the offerings from Otter Creek. I can’t wait to see how this American Amber/Red will down on St. Valentines Day.

The beer pours a clear dark ambers with ruby hues and an off white head.

The nose is fantastic with rich caramel malt aromas and a slight hint of floral hops.

That a nice beer; hardy enough for winter but also somewhat refreshing.

The experience starts out with a malt sweetness up front followed by an almost cleansing effervescence as the ale washes over the tongue in the middle of the sip. There is a slight hesitation on the swallow but that is easy to overcome. The finish is where this all come together. The finish is rich with caramel malt flavors and a nice hoppy bite, will it’s more link a tingle. The hop flavors are not bitter or overwhelming leaving a nicely balanced experience.

This beer just keeps getting better as it warms and opens up. It is much smoother now with richer malt flavors.

I let this set to warm up to room temperature.

What a great beer. I’m always impressed with a beer continues to taste good after it warms.

The malt flavors are more pronounced now. There is an almost toffee note coming through on the finish. The hops continue to make their presents known but seem to be a little more subdued at this temperature.

Even through this is a little too hoppy for my taste I still have to acknowledge the craftsmanship that created this ale. So I have to give this an A- for a rating.

Otter Creek’s Winter Red Ale is sure to please just about every craft beer drinker. Its full body with caramel malt flavors and just a hint of toffee is balanced nicely with an eloquent hop presence to give it a hardy and refreshing quality.

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