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Monday, March 16, 2009

A Winter Send Off With Garrison's Winter Warmer

The end of winter is in sight as there are now only five days until the first official day of Spring!

The winter wasn't that bad here in Toronto, or at least I didn't think so. But I'm ready for the warmer weather, the long bike rides down the boardwalk, the start of the baseball season, and the beginning of all the beer events shaping up. Last night I thought I'd say "So Long" to the gloomy days of the winter past with a glass Garrison's Winter Warmer, a newish seasonal from the ever developing brewery in Nova Scotia.

The 500ml bottle is attractively decorated with red foil over the cap and features a colourful purple label featuring a shovel stuck in a pile of snow. Living in an apartment, in the city, I don't have to shovel, but back home, shovelling was something I enjoyed doing, and something I missed this year. Thanks Garrison.

A mahogany coloured brew poured into the glass after I carefully removed the cap from the red foil. Gentle spices rose from the chalice as I brought it to my nose. Cinnamon, burnt sugars, a little touch of a citrusy zest, pitted cherries, and light molasses, all working together to provide a nice aroma. It felt slightly overcarbonnated, but it settled with each sip, adding a pricking sensation on the tongue. More spices in the mouth. Sweet sugars, more cinnamon, some red wine features and a small warming boozy smack from the 6.7% alcohol contained in the bottle. The stickiness from the Winter Warmer was pleasant as the flavours stuck around and hung out on the front of my tongue, reminding me of the previous sips.

A well-crafted, solid Winter Warmer from a brewery on the rise. A great way to welcome the first signs of Spring.

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