The Beers of Winter: Old Jubilation by Avery
"Winter beer," I'm learning, is largely synonmous with "English Strong Ale." Bold, fruity, malty, high ABV but not as strong as a barleywine, with a hops attack varying from mild to extreme. Almost like an Octoberfest on steroids.
Avery's Old Jubilation is par for the course, clocking in with a medium-strong hops bite, a malty/toffeesque dominant flavor and little in the way of spice and/or flavor depth. The bottle art, as one blogger writes, is reminiscent of a "starving artist sale at the flea market," but the beer itself is a strong if not shockingly creative example of the genre. Speaking personally, the fruity and effervescent Snow Cap by Pyramid is a more stimulating example of the style, but Old Jubilation may be a more accessible gateway beer for those interested in getting into English Strong Ale.
Six 12 oz. bottles for $9.89 at The Four Firkins
Overall Grade (scale of 10): 6