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November 2nd, 2011 12:01 am MARTIN CIZMAR | Drank

Drank: Abominable Winter Ale (Hopworks Urban Brewery)

Hopworks Urban Brewery advertises its Abominable Winter Ale as a “Fall Seasonal.” That’s the first sign something’s awry. Though winter ale and Christmas ale are fuzzily defined styles, this hop-heavy West Coast pale ale just doesn’t fit, despite the cute cartoon yeti on the label. Winter ales are spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg or the like—stuff you’d find in cookies. Gimmicky? Yeah, sure, but that’s why people buy them. The only vaguely holiday flavor in this all-too-standard brew is spruce, coming from Centennial and Simcoe hops, which, like your least favorite familial guests, outstay their welcome after a sweet and malty start. The carbonation in our bottle, purchased from Food Front co-op in Northwest Portland, also seemed a bit off, dissipating far too quickly from a thin head atop a coppery yellow body. Pick a season, HUB, and add the appropriate spices. The yeti can stay. Not recommended.
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