Is November the greatest month of the year? An argument could be made. This is the month that gives us culturally accepted gluttony during Thanksgiving, perfect football weather, and the inspiration for GN’R’s “November Rain.” It’s also the month that breweries release their winter beers. Stouts and porters, bourbon barrel aged goodies and concoctions with holiday spices hit the shelves. Get ready to pack on the holiday weight, ladies and gentlemen. It’s Winter Beer season. Here are 10 new beers you have to drink this month.
Full Sail 27 Wheatwine Ale
Oregon’s Full Sail Brewing is celebrating its 27th anniversary with the release of a new Wheatwine Ale—a barleywine style of beer with wheat instead of barley. Honestly, I don’t know what to expect from this kind of beer, but the brewer promises a smooth package packed with citrus, spice and caramel. Sign me up. The beer released at the end of October, and comes in at a stout 9.5% ABV.
Sudwerk Brewing Ultimator
Sudwerk tapped the first batch of this Doppel Bock at their Halloween party, but six packs hit the stores this week. It’s a dark lager that undergoes a 10-week cold storage treatment that creates a “velvety smooth finish.” Later this winter, Sudwerk will release a bourbon barrel aged version of the beer.
Dry Dock Brewing Double Brown Ale
There’s a good chance you’re not going to get ahold of one of these beers. Dry Dock only shipped 200 cases to select stores the first week of November, but I think it’s important to have a dream. And this barrel-aged brown ale is a worthy dream—an English brown ale with a “nutty, caramel backbone…with a hint of chocolate.” Sounds dreamy to me. They’re also releasing a Double Hazelnut Brown Ale too.
Saint Arnold Sailing Santa
Take Saint Arnold’s Christmas Ale, blend it with their Elissa IPA, add some spices and then you get this Sailing Santa. It’s hoppy, Christmasy, festive and almost sessionable at 5.7% ABV. So feel free to pick up a few bombers for your next Holiday party. It will hit the shelves on November 17.
Troegs Mad Elf
November 17th is going to be a good day. Not only will you be able to pick up the aforementioned Sailing Santa from Saint Arnold, but that’s also the day the Troegs Mad Elf lands. The Belgian strong ale, brewed with honey and cherries, has garnered a cult following in Pennsylvania and beyond. Personally, I’m psyched because Troegs is now distributing in North Carolina.
Spoetzl Brewery Shiner Birthday Beer
106 years. That’s how long Spoetzel Brewery, producers of the popular Shiner, have been making beer. So they’re celebrating with an anniversary chocolate stout that’s brewed “with chocolate malt and real cocoa,” promising a “soft creamy head…and a slightly sweet finish.” Okay, if you turn 106, you’ve earned the right to be indulgent.
Elysian Brewing BiFrost
You gotta love a beer that’s named after the mythical rainbow bridge that connects two intergalactic realms. This particular beer is not your typical winter brew—it’s a pale ale packed with hops. I think the Norse gods would be proud. Pick it up in six packs starting now through December.
Take Moo-Hoo and add espresso-roasted coffee beans and you get a jacked up version of one of Terrapin’s most popular beers. Because what a chocolate milk stout really needs is coffee. You know it, and I know it.
SanTan Brewing Sex Panther
You know when you see a beer name, and you’re like, “damn it, why didn’t I think of that beer name!” Yeah, “Sex Panther” is pretty much the perfect beer name. And fans of this beer would argue that it’s the perfect beer, too. They love it so much, SanTan is releasing the Panther two months ahead of schedule. Find this smooth, chocolate porter on shelves right now.
Deschutes Chasin’ Freshies
Yeah, it’s a winter beer, but it’s a winter beer that’s all about the hops. Deschutes plucks Mosaic hop cones fresh from the vines and starts brewing immediately in an attempt to capture “the purest, juiciest essence of the hop flower.” Consider this the hop bomb to balance all the malt-heavy beers that are hitting the shelves right now. Pick it up in 22-ounce bombers through December.