When the weather turns frigid, beer drinkers turn to darker libations like stouts or brown ales. One beer type in particular helps keep the cold at bay: winter warmers. A winter warmer is a type of English Strong Ale, one that is heavier on malts than hops, giving it a sweet and sometimes bread-like flavor in the mouth and a dark color, ranging from a deep red to a rich black. A lot of winter warmers, like the Sam Adams Old Fezziwig Ale and the Thirsty Dog 12 Dogs of Christmas Ale, include large helpings of spices like cinnamon and ginger. Others—like Founder’s Old Curmudgeon Ale, our favorite of the season—rely on higher alcohol content (up to 10 percent). That’ll keep you warm. One last hint: When you stock up for your holiday party, hold a bottle or two back for next Christmas—good winter warmers taste even better with time.
Founder's Old Curmudgeon AleAvailable at Ludlow Wines339 Ludlow Ave.(513) 751-3727
Old Fezziwig AleAvailable at Cork ’N Bottle501 Crescent Ave., Covington(859) 261-833312
Dogs of Christmas AleAvailable at Hyde Park Wine & Spirits2719 Madison Rd., Hyde Park(513) 533-4300
Photographs courtesy of Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. / Founders Brewing / The Boston Beer Company, INC.Originally published in the December 2011 issue.
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