Look at that wrap around artwork. It's FDR drinking, smoking and chilling in front of a fire with an ELF!!
21'st Amendment Fireside Chat - Winter Spiced Ale (2012)
12 fl. oz. (x2) / $5.00 USD / 7.9% ABV
About: "Fireside Chat is a subtle twist on the traditional seasonal brew. We begin with a rich, dark ruby brown, English-style ale and then improvise with spices until we know we have a beer worth sharing with the nation. During Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s, Fireside Chat will brighten the faces of those who enjoy it, near the hearth or at the table. Its subtle blend of spices balances the malty ale and will make this a foodie’s favorite, as it pairs perfectly with holiday meals. To make it unique each year, Brewmaster Shaun personally selects a special blend of spices for the beer, based on the moment’s inspiration."
Thoughts: Fireside Chat poured a deep brown color with a huge almond colored tan head. There are tons of small bubbles and froth here, with loads of lacing along the sides of the glass.
This beer smells most wondrous. Immediately I'm reminded of Christmas, a good thing for beer drinkers who enjoy holiday brews of course. You've gotta work for the scent somewhat... it's not too strong, nor too weak, but if you want to experience all that is has to offer then you've gotta lean in and take your time. I'm getting figs, cinnamon, sugar, plums, chocolate, lightly toasted nuts... second can now, and I'm getting those chocolate covered cherries and bananas.
Very rich and frothy up front, sweet dark malts, a little smoke, nice bitterness from the hops that creep in, dryness from the spices and a slight chocolaty char on the back of the tongue. Overall the taste of the beer is pretty damn good. It's got a roasted flavor that very underlined, as if a hint of coffee is about to come through, but it doesn't really. All of the other more interesting and neater flavors shine though and it's like smoking elf bud through a hydro bong filled with Christmas joy. It doesn't get too too sweet, but it's pretty damn amazing how it settles, and it's not bitter at all even though there's a heavy touch of hops towards the end.
So no Belgian yeast... I'm cool with that. It's fruity, but leans more towards chocolate covered banana at the town fair type business and when it's cold you can feel the beach winds in the air. Christmas by the fireside, perhaps... but by the campfire-side, that's how I do things.
Mouth feel is a medium. It's not thick or frothy at all, but the spices overflow in the mouth and the flavor lasts long after the brew is swallowed. Hops especially begin to dig in around the end of everything, which is a nice touch. I like it. I would suggest grabbing some of these whenever you get the chance and saving them for the later months, when it's out of season and you'll be really wanting them.