Brew Review

Beer Review – Southern Tier Old Man Winter Ale

Southern Tier Old Man Winter 2

A while ago, I had stopped at Roger Wilco to pick up a mixed six and grabbed a Southern Tier Old Man Winter Ale as one of the six. Sadly, over the ensuing months, the beer fridge has seen its fair share of Gogurts and yogurts and half pint water bottles tossed about , so the Old Man Winter much like the old man in the house had been cast aside and neglected. During a restock, I found the Old Man and rescued it. I had initially bought the Old Man as I enjoy winter ales and we have enjoyed the Harvest Ale, the Imperial Pumking and the 2XIPA. Now, that it is mid-Spring it may be a bit out of season but I find myself with a few minutes to myself and right now I don’t care.

Here is what Southern Tier has to say about their Old Man Winter Ale:

Our winter offering is here to quell your shivers and get you through the coldest of nights. A rich marriage of hops and barley to cast light upon the evening and melt your mind out of the snowdrifts. Old Man Winter’s earthy hue and thickness lace around the glass, inviting you to linger in its warmth and share the spirits of the season with your friends and family. A deceptively strong brew, its best to sit and ponder with this old man, sip by sip.

I found the Old Man to be…

  • Appearance: A copper color with a nice tan foam.
  • Aroma: A big blast of sweet malt followed with a fragrant hoppy and somewhat piney scent.
  • Taste: Fizzy, a little chewy and somewhat doughy with a spicy middle and nice hit of hoppy finish.
  • ABV: 7%

There is a lot going on with this one. Not bad but maybe a little out of balance. I found the flavors to follow one another rather than blend with one another. Malty upfront and then spicy (allspice, nutmeg) and then a hoppy finish. It was good but not great.

6 replies »

  1. Winter? Nothing about that beer from flavor to label to top-secret hologram that’s only unlocked if exposed to the reflected glint off of the underside of the discarded foil top of a Jell-O™ butterscotch pudding container is remotely related to the tail-less dolphin. Hard to understand what they were thinking there.

    From a purely seasonal beer perspective, I’ve always foung ST’s OMW a bit disappointing. Entirely too malty, quite thin and, in a word, insincere. It’s as though they took the second runnings of a scotch ale wort and tossed in a bunch of budget brand spices. Way too many great Winter brews out there to go back to this one.

    Their current “Live” Spring seasonal, on the other hand, is really well done. I’d suggest you grab one of those but I assume you’d probably want to wait until next winter to taste it in keeping with the seasonal lag protocol.

    And so goes another comment with no reference to scapulas, Flock of Seagulls tour posters, or outtakes from One Crazy Summer.



  2. Insincere…that might be a good way to sum it up. It was good but certainly not bold enough to warrant a second go. As you have indicated, there are a large number of other winter ales that are more worthy.

    And, I take exception to my seasonal lag for two reasons. First, the beer fridge was hijacked with Sponge Bob Gogurts and second it is a single season lag. I would probably have buy the “Live” Spring seasonal now, lose it to some other superfluous child’s refrigerated dairy concoction and then drink it Midsummer.


  3. Found this as I’m searching for OMW reviews. Glad to see one from a friend.

    I agree all around. Too malty, out of balance. I had a bottle with some pizza, and the salt seemed to cancel out the maltiness. I was expecting something more like 2XIPA, I guess; much more deliberate hopping. Oh well, can’t win um all.


    • Yeah, after the fantastic 2XIPA, the Old Man was a little lacking. I guess I was expecting a little more from Southern Tier but like you noted, you can’t win them all.


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