It’s 80 here and snowing at home, so here’s some Xmas cheer…

Here comes another brew from the capital city of Sacramento, CA.  Hoppy Brewing Co (http://www.hoppy.com/) produces this winter warmer called Hoppy Claus Holiday Ale, ranking in at a 7.8% ABV.  Granted, it is technically spring, and being in SoCal it was a dry 86 here today, but most of my family and friends are back in the northeast where, once again, there is snow on the ground, so this only seemed appropriate.

I picked up a bomber at the local (and only) beer store, and at the time of my original review writing, it was the holiday season, so I was comfortable with the freshness of this brew.  Believe me, the easiest way to tell a beer has been on the shelves too long at this place is the dust test.  Lot’s of dust on the bottle=NOT FRESH, DON’T BUY!  Also, this officially let’s the cat out of the bag that these reviews are not new, so to speak.  I am currently transferring reviews over from my account on BeerAdvocate, since I have almost 400 beers on there, and for the current economic climate it is way more cost-effective to use said past reviews.  Don’t worry, I will bring some more fresh content once I get everything caught up.  All that being said, I think I was talking about a beer at one point…

Poured this brew into a pint glass, and it has a thick, dense 2-inch head on top of a cloudy, dark, orange-amber-ish colored beer.  Pretty good aroma of spice (nutmeg and coriander?) and citrus, but not overpowering.  The initial taste on the front of the tongue is hops, which is predominant in this brewery’s products (and I am grateful).  The spice follows right behind, with the hint of citrus right behind it, so the smell does not lead you astray.  Pretty smooth and seemless transition of flavors.  There is sourness to the aftertaste, which is not entirely unpleasant; in fact, it balances well with the smells and flavors of the beer.  The body of the brew feels round and smooth on the tongue.  The sour characteristics do make for a limiting factor in regards to drinkability, as it seems to have a cumulative effect, but for one or two, it is a tasty beer.  This one might be a tough find elsewhere in the country, as I think I said before that I don’t know what Hoppy’s distribution is, but it’s not too shabby a brew at all.

Hope this helps to send warm vibes to all you poor souls trudging around in the snow back home!

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