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12 Beers of Christmas – Smuttynose’s Winter Ale

Submitted by on December 23, 2009 – 1:29 PMOne Comment
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SmuttynoseSmuttynose, Winter Ale
Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Like Jones Soda, Smuttynose is best recognized for the faux-vintage photography it uses on its labels. Old men sitting next to a trailer, a Labrador sitting on a stage, turn of the century carnival folk–that sort of thing. But the bottle for its Winter Ale is likely the most elegant, with the image of a laughing Eisenhower-era woman clutching a small stack of gifts in a suburban snowscape. It’s the kind of image one would find sifting through old pictures of your parents or grandparents, a nostalgic reminder of the longevity of tradition and the golden haze that lays over our memories of holidays past. It’s sort of shame that the beer inside of the bottle is so astoundingly unremarkable. The beer has a dark, murky shade that doesn’t have a strong flavor to match. It’s an odd reminder that while we may coat the holidays with good cheer and nostalgia, most of them are just middling and forgettable.