Beer: Bison Brewing Gingerbread Ale
Type: Organic Porter
Availability: Seasonal September – December
Location: Berkeley, CA
Price: $8.99/4-pack at Whole Foods
Appearance: Ruby brown to deep brown, creamy tan head with good head retention.
Aroma: Malty, tad sweet, spicy ginger.
Body & Texture: Incredibly smooth and soft. Light feeling for a porter but medium bodied.
Aftertaste: Malty with warm winter spices. Not hoppy at all.
This beer is so easy to drink. It’s definitely much easier to drink than I had imagined, and went down the hatch a tad too fast (in a good way). Gingerbread Ale is one of my new seasonal favorites. I had tried it once last year with the old label, and this years seems more up to date and really gets your attention. They also upped the amount of cinnamon and nutmeg by 50% this year, and I think that’s a great idea. It wasn’t too spicy, and honestly I couldn’t really pick out one spice in particular as more over bearing than the other, which I always consider a good thing — it means it’s well balanced. While some people think of dark colored beers as a strong or heavy beer, this porter does not feel heavy in the mouth at all, hence it going down so easily! I really liked the mouth feel of this beer, as well as the initial tastes, and the aftertastes. All around I think it’s a great seasonal, and it will definitely be making an appearance in my house again. This is one of those seasonal beers you don’t want to miss! As a side note, I drank this after the brew review with some spicy jalapeno poppers, I know sounds like a terrible pairing, but it actually wasn’t. The beer totally helped cut through the spiciness.
After connecting with Organic Dan, Bison’s Chief Hoperations Manager on twitter, he sent me two Gingerbread Ale’s to develop a recipe using this beer. Before creating any recipe, it’s only right to conduct a brew review to know how I should use it. I had ideas in mind before tasting it, but I’ve now changed my direction. Look for my recipe using Gingerbread Ale very soon! Thanks for the opportunity, Bison Brewing!