Beer Review: Merry Christmas & Happy New Year (2020) – Anchor Brewing Company

This was my beer of choice on Christmas Day itself while I helped my dad cook up crimbo dinner. I bought it as part of my Premier Hop subscription order and it’s come all the way from San Francisco in the USA. Anchor Brewing Company have an annual tradition of releasing a different Winter Warmer style beer to celebrate the festive season. This year is the 46th edition of the brew and is apparently their strongest and darkest yet at 7% ABV.

Visually the beer looks like a glass of crude oil (you can actually see my reflection in the beer) with a light tan head sitting on top. A really pleasant nose that’s quite hard to place but for me reminds me of vanilla mixed with winter spices like nutmeg. The body of the beer is silky smooth with a fantastic rich creaminess. From start to finish the malts are giving a lovely chocolate and coffee bitterness to the flavour.

A quick note on the bottle art: Each year they feature a different tree on the bottle. This year is Yosemite’s famous Three Graces. In their words it was ‘chosen to represent togetherness in a year when we had to spend so much time apart’. Potentially my favourite bottle art yet!

I ended up paying around £3.65 for a beer all the way from the States and it was certainly worth it! Very reminiscent of a traditional, high quality stout. Despite being 7% ABV there really is no booziness, which makes this supremely drinkable for such a dark beer. It also has the lightest carbonation that actually compliments the beer well. Velvety smooth this was a great beer for a frosty Christmas. I will certainly try and get next years edition!

Score: 8/10

Thanks for reading! Cheers!

Additional Information:

  • Hops: Not Available
  • Malt: Not Available
  • IBU: Not Available
  • ABV: 7%
  • Gluten Free: No
  • Vegan: Yes!
  • Purchase Location: Premier Hop

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