Anchor X-mas Vertical

It might be small but we do have a nice beer community on the Monterey Peninsula. Two of of our good friends are B & K who we met – where else – but Ol’ Factory Cafe. Everyone knows I am a HUGE social butterfly. One evening a couple of years ago, I was walking up to the bar at OFC to order a beer and I heard B order a Green Flash West Coast IPA. We started talking and have been friends with them ever since.

Last night, they invited us over for a vertical tasting of Anchor Christmas. There were five years of the holiday brew 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2008. To make a little game out of it, we did a blind tasting and tried to guess which beer was which year.

The beers had been properly cellared so they were all excellent.

And guess who picked them all correctly… me! By no means am I a good beer taster. I have never tried to be ‘Mr. Beer Palette’ but last night I channeled my inner beer douche and correctly identified the year for all five beers.

The 2003 was the easiest to pick out. It’s flavor was the mellowest and the spices most muted. 2004 and 2005 were not as mellow but you could guess by the amount of spice in the body of the beer.

2006 and 2008 were the hardest to choose. They were easily identifiable as the newest years but choosing which one was which proved to be hard. I hadn’t had much of the 2008 this year, the beer disappeared from the Monterey Peninsula very quickly while we were in Europe. It really just came down to guessing. And I guessed correctly.

To finish off this enjoyable evening, a bottle of Stone’s 10th anniversary IPA was cracked open.

Thanks again to B & K for hosting such a great evening…

2 Replies to “Anchor X-mas Vertical”

  1. We get them in retail every year over here&i think the’03vintage was fantastic&cellared quite a few,but i guess it peaked a couple of years ago&by now it should be pretty nasty.
    I remember that you could still recognize the spices though.
    I dont remember the last year’s vintage as we”drank in”the new year with the magnum-bottle i’ve recieved for x-mas.
    Still got a couple of’07bottles.

  2. We had a lot of fun at our friends’ house doing the tasting1 Anchor Christmas is awesome most years. I was very impressed that Chris got all the vintages correct!

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