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Winter & Beer

January 8, 2022

Given the seasonal nature of some beers, most beer connoisseurs have a few favorites they anticipate each time of the year. In the fall, many look forward to numerous Oktoberfest biers that make a brief appearance. In the winter months, brewers showcase an offering of darker and stronger stouts and ales. Winter ale, although not a defined beer style like stout, is a widespread brewing tradition in much of the country. Brewing a stronger beer to thwart the effects of the cold weather months is undoubtedly as old as brewing itself and for many is as much a part of Christmas as Jingle Bells. Here are a some of our favorite winter beers:

Sierra Nevada Celebration IPA- This is a different sort of winter warmer, but its longevity and national popularity proves its worth. It is a great and inexpensive option for a fresh hopped ale.

Summit Winter Ale – A local winter ale, based originally on the British Warmer style of beer has also stood the test of time.

Schell’s Snowstorm – This winter seasonal offering changes slightly year to year. This year’s version is described as a malt driven Oat Starkbier.

Surly Darkness – This gem came out in late October and might be hard to find. However, the barrel-aged version is due out in February.

Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Stout – The beer released on Black Friday can still be found on store shelves. People wait in line for the variants of the base version. The 14% ABV is not for the meek.

Junkyard Brewing – Barrel-Aged King-Size and Queen-Size Stouts – This pair of stouts from Fargo are both available now in barrel-aged versions for extra flavor. These peanut butter stouts might be worth a road trip.

Bent Paddle Double Shot Double Black – It’s all in the name for this bourbon barrel-aged beer out of Duluth


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