Advent Beer Calendar 2010: Day 19: Hibernation Ale

Great Divide Hibernation AleToday’s beer has been Great Divide Brewing Company‘s winter ale for a decade and a half, the award-winning Hibernation Ale. An English-style Old Ale, I noted with interested that pre-2009 vintages of Hibernation were 8.1% alcohol by volume, but since 2009 this went up to 8.7%. (Usually you’d expect to see this go the other way.)

Hibernation Ale has been our celebrated winter tradition since 1995. This robust, dry-hopped ale has a malty richness balanced with a complex hop profile and hearty, warming character.

Layers of flavor and complexity are the hallmark of this beer, building on top of a solid malty, sticky base and generous hops. Hibernation is one of the best American interpretations of an Old Ale around, and you can drink it fresh or store some away in the cellar for a later treat—it lends itself well to aging.

With much of the country under snow right now, going into a little pre-Christmas hibernation with a sixer of Hibernation might well be called for.

BeerAdvocate: A-. RateBeer: 3.73/5, 98th percentile.