‘Tis the season to be jolly…and a worthy holiday brew sure does help to set the mood! Stretching back all the way to 1975, the real “San Francisco treat” come late November has always been Anchor Brewing Company’s ever-evolving Anchor Christmas Ale. I’m not kidding, everything from the feature “tree” on its beautifully ornate label to the actual recipe of the beer is adjusted every year! Talk about a way to keep you on your toes!
The 2011 is a medium-bodied ale that when poured is a murky chestnut brown and immediately exudes a pleasant aroma of spices and fruits. Hints of chocolate, gingerbread and fig really help to balance out its surprising sweetness! It’s a definite “winter warmer” as they say- practically made for curling up next to a loved one and a crackling fire.
As I mentioned, the tree featured on the label every year is part of what changes and makes this craft beverage so unique. Trees represent the winter solstice; a time when the earth, with its seasons, appears born anew. This year’s depiction is of a bristlecone pine, one of the oldest living things on our planet! The emphasis on joy and celebration of the newness of life is one thing that doesn’t seem will ever alter about the Anchor Christmas Ale. Try pairing it with pumpkin pie!
Available in 6-packs and magnums, and on draught. It’s my ‘Beer of the Month’ for December!