A real and true Winter Warmer! Winter Warmers are beers that are heavy on the malts, heavier bodies, slightly higher in alcohol content than average, and often on the sweeter end of things. Hops/spice content can vary. Here goes this one:
Name: Isolation Ale
Origin: Odell Brewing Company
Style: Winter Warmer
I drank this: at Old Chicago, Overland Park
I have absolutely no notes anywhere for what this beer smells like. Nothing. Scent notes aren’t usually something I forget (I’m perfume-obsessed, making scent something I tend to look for right away), so based on my lack of notes and the sort of general sense of things I picked up at beeradvocate, I’m going to go ahead and say this beer is pretty much scentless except for a bit of malty sweetness. It has a lovely auburn color, with no visible carbonation or head retention. Just pretty auburn.
As far as drinking goes, this is a fun, warming, easy beer to drink. It’s mostly medium malts with lots of caramelly notes and hints of raisins and sugar, combined with a hit of hops in the sort of pine tree range. The hops provide a lot of flavor without providing a super-bitter/bite-y feeling on the tongue. So hop-haters, don’t shy away from this one – it has a hop presence but isn’t like WOAH HOPS the way the Sierra Nevada Celebration or the Boulevard Nutcracker is. It’s a mid or lower-range hop level.
The aftertaste is hops of the piney variety, nice and Christmas-y. They’ve done a good job of picking hops that are reminiscent of pine and herbs rather than the common Cascades-citrusy hop bomb that a lot of American brews have. I loves me some Cascades, but getting away from them and working with the pine flavors is nice, especially for Winter.
All told, I like it and would happily have another few.
As a quick question: for some reason, I’ve been completely unable to come across any Boulder Never Summer Ale and some Boulder Cold Hop Ale. If anyone knows where I can find some, please shoot me a message. Spanx!