Best Winter Beers

When the days get shorter and the nights get longer and colder, you know winter is here! But we love winters for the festivities and holidays that come with it. It’s a time for family gatherings, holiday parties, and, of course, the seasonal winter beers. These winter beers consist of stouts, porters, ales, and IPAs brewed with robust hops, malt, and several other ingredients to give delicious flavors.

best winter beers - featured

Compared to your everyday beers, these winter beers are brewed specifically to match the mood of the winter season. We have beverages specially labeled Christmas beers/ales, produced only during the festive season.

For the coming festive period, we bring you a list of these winter beers, highlighting their flavor profiles, alcohol content, and other amazing properties.

The following are our best winter beers, in no particular order, from the amazing Delirium Christmas ale to the classic Winter Warmer!

Delirium Christmas Ale

Delirium Christmas Ale

Delirium is a brewing company especially known for its seasonal beers, and this Christmas beer is certainly a favorite. Delirium traces its origin to 1654, manufacturing premium alcoholic beverages suitable for several occasions. This Christmas beer was created for the festive season.

The taste of the winter beer is quite complex, with notes of toasty brown bready malt, dried fruits, caramel malts, raisins, tea tannins, tangy oranges, dried cranberries, and licorice.

Its aroma is a combination of citrus, yeasty brown bread, cranberries, and caramel. In appearance, you get a chestnut amber-colored beer with a white, creamy, lacing foam.

The aftertaste of this sweet beer is just as impressive, with hints of cinnamon, black pepper, caramel, and more toasty brown bread. The SRM of this beer is 23, the IBU is 26, and the alcohol percentage is 10%.

With the complex flavors of the beer, it goes great with dishes such as chili, stews, winter soups, hamburgers, beef, and barbecue.

Trillium Brewing - Cadeau Holiday Belgian Ale

Trillium Brewing – Cadeau Holiday Belgian Ale

If you’re looking for the best beers for the winter holidays, this Cadeau holiday Belgian Ale is definitely a top choice! From the exquisite packaging to the premium hops and malts used, everything paints this beverage as a premium holiday drink.

This Belgian ale is made from Sterling hops, Pilsner malts, and Dextrose sugar. In aroma, this beer is packed with fragrant ingredients that will have you drinking bottle after bottle. The aromas include delicate notes of white pepper, apple, and pear. On the palate, you get a drink with flavors of a delicate malty body, floral and citrusy hops, and pleasant spices.

These flavors are followed by a high carbonation that gives you refreshing tastes with each sip. The Cadeau Holiday Belgian Ale is enjoyed with various dishes, including traditional stews, baked duck, fruits, and sharp cheese.

The Veil Brewing Company - Whangdoodle

The Veil Brewing Company – Whangdoodle

Aged in bourbon barrels for 14 months, the base of Whangdoodle is an absolutely delicious chocolate milk stout for the holidays! This imperial stout is a beautifully packaged beer, perfect as a gift to your loved ones for the holiday.

It gives an amazing impression on the palate, lending you flavors of German chocolate cake, chocolate wafers, chocolate mousse, and maple molasses cookies. It’s a full-bodied drink with an alcohol percentage of 11.5%.

Whangdoodle in the past has been released in one off form, meaning The Veil will release different variations highlighting different adjuncts year to year but also still releasing the standard base version.  The Veil has mentioned aging Whangdoodle in Buffalo Trace rye, Laird’s apple brandy, and Utopias for about 22 months. This barrel-aged beer is sweet on the palate and has a fuller body compared to the beers so far.

As one of the best chocolate stouts around, you’ll enjoy it with Smoked Bleu Cheese, Chocolate Chip cookies, and smoked meat meals. The smoky flavor of food pairs perfectly with this drink, making it perfect for those barbecues in the winter months.

Prairie - Christmas Bomb

Prairie – Christmas Bomb

The Prairie Christmas bomb is a delicious imperial stout made from roasted barley malts, Chocolate malts, cacao nibs, chilies, wintry spices, and coffee. It’s one of the best dark beers with strong chocolatey flavors balanced with notes of bread and spices.

It’s one of the imperial stouts you’ll love for winter nights, giving a smooth mouthfeel with nice spicy aromas. The beverage has a high alcohol content at 13% ABV, so you should be careful of how many bottles you’re drinking.

You’ll enjoy this beer paired with dishes such as smoked game, grilled beef, gouda cheese, brie cheese, chocolates, and other wintry comfort foods.

Birrificio Del Ducato - Krampus

Birrificio Del Ducato – Krampus

If you’re looking for winter warmers, the Birrificio Del Ducato Krampus is the perfect ale to have for a cold night. Krampus has a balanced flavor profile of sweetness, spiciness, and bitterness.

In appearance, Krampus has an intense amber color with red reflections and cream-colored foam. Its aroma is of balsamic notes with candied dark fruit and spices. Taste wise, the brown ale is packed with tastes of ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

Birrificio Del Ducato Krampus pairs perfectly with desserts based on dried and candied fruits, cream cheese, and leavened pastries.

Dancing Gnome - Hibernal IPA

Dancing Gnome – Hibernal IPA

You’d enjoy this IPA for cold winter nights, brewed from Chinook, Cascade, and Centennial hops. The seasonal beer is rich in malt character, giving you notes of fresh pine, citrus zest, and winter cheer.

The flavor profile incorporates tastes of citrus, dank, and floral. You’ll enjoy this beer in full swing with a classic American burger, Thai food, Mexican food, and citrus desserts.

It’s light-bodied with an alcohol content of 8% ABV. The beverage is of limited availability, and you’ll find it only during the festive season at the brewery and surrounding bottle shops.

St Bernardus - Christmas Ale

St Bernardus – Christmas Ale

This Abbey stylel ale packs a higher alcohol content with a 10% ABV in a 750ml bottle. It’s a winter beet that is a dark brown color, layered with a cream-colored foam when poured.

The beer has a bright hop character with notes of zest, aniseed, caramel, and fire-roasted chestnuts. These flavors trickle into the aftertaste, with an noticeable finish of chocolate and dried fruits. It’s one of the winter warmers you’ll find perfect for desserts, providing you with a bready but spicy finish.

The beverage is highly recommended, with chocolate desserts and Scandinavian dishes packed with wintry spices.

Hardywood Brewing - Christmas Morning

Hardywood Brewing – Christmas Morning

As the name implies, this is one of the winter beers you want to pair with festive dishes on a Christmas morning. It’s one of the imperial stouts made with ingredients that make you feel like you’re having a warm cup of milk and coffee with some chocolate in the morning .

It’s basically a gingerbread stout that’s conditioned on  locally roasted Blanchard’s Coffee Co. coffee beans. The Imperial milk stout is heavily spiced, and you’d enjoy it with pastry-based dishes and cookies.

The breakfast stout is medium-bodied, with an alcohol percentage of 10.6%.

Bell’s Christmas Ale

Bell’s Christmas Ale

When it comes to Scotch ales for Christmas, this Bell’s Christmas beer is an option you want to explore. It’s a classic winter brew known for its deep brown color and rich malty character.

This Scotch ale is packed with flavors of toffee, malts, and caramel. It has a mildly bitter aftertaste masked by its fruity aroma that goes with quite a number of dishes.

Food paintings for this dark beer include smoked salmon, smoked meat, Swiss, Brie, and Gouda cheese. The Bell’s Christmas Ale has an alcohol content of 7.5%, guaranteed to keep you warm on cold winter nights.

Island - Bourbon County Stout

Island – Bourbon County Stout

This Imperial Stout was aged in  bourbon barrels to give you the best flavors and aromas possible from a Christmas beer. It’s a recipe spanning 30 years made with Millennium hops and barrel-aged in bourbon barrels from Heaven Hill, Buffalo Trace, Wild Turkey, and Four Roses distilleries.

This stout is aged for at least 12 months to develop fudge, caramelized sugar, vanilla, almond,  and cocoa flavors. It’s one of the best barrel-aged beers with a rich, decadent mouthfeel and can be paired with dishes such as cheese, smoked game, grilled meat, chocolate, and digestive.

The Imperial stout has a high alcohol content of 14.6%.

Cigar City Brewing - Winter Warmer Ale

Cigar City Brewing – Winter Warmer Ale

This winter warmer is brewed by Cigar City Brewing Company, combining old ale winter warmers with English barley wines. The styles of these beverages were combined with citrusy hops, including Chinook, Amarillo, Simcoe, Glacier, Columbus, and Centennial. The result of these combinations was this Floridian Winter Ale with an alcohol percentage of 12%.

In appearance, this beverage is dark amber to brown, with hints of toffee and dried citrus in the aroma. Its flavors are a combination of caramel, toffee, citrus, and pine bitterness. You also get an aftertaste of rye, citrus, and toffee.

It’s one of the winter warmers you’d enjoy with dishes like warm pecan pies, burgers, cheeses, fried food, steaks, and pizzas.

Founders - KBS Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout

Founders – KBS Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout

KBS has become a staple to seek out during the holiday season, brewed as a bourbon barrel aged beer with an alcohol content of 12%. It’s a barrel aged coffee stout with decadent notes of chocolate paired with coffee while also having a bourbon barrel hit.

KBS is a full bodied beer that has a very silky mouthfeel. You can expect to taste a fine delicate note of vanilla, coffee, chocolate with a nice char barrel finish. This is a great stout to seek out for the holiday season around a campfire and pairs nicely with all sorts of cheese, charcuterie boards, and steaks or any featured red meat dish.

Frequently Asked Questions

When do winter beers start selling in the market?

Winter beers are usually manufactured and aged for months and released in late November or early December.

Where can I get these beers?

You can get winter beers in your nearest liquor retail stores, or you can order online from your favorite vendors.

What is a winter warmer?

It’s a style of beer that’s made with lots of spice and malt character, giving your palate notes of cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon.

Related Winter Beer Articles

For more winter deliciousness, you can check out our list of the best beers for chilly weather. If you’re precisely looking for beverages for the Christmas season, you want to see this list of our top Christmas beers including our eggnog beer review.

Wrapping Up

These are the best beers for winter to enjoy solo, at family gatherings, or holiday parties. They’ll put you in the mood for festivities and you can create many holiday memories with them!

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