Granville Island Lions Winter Ale

Reviewed by on January 30, 2014 in Winter Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Granville Island Brewery

  • Origin: Vancouver, BC, CA

  • Rated On: December 16, 2012

  • Best Before: N/A

  • ABV: 5.5%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Winter Warmer

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

Granville Island Brewing started out as a microbrewery in the bustling tourist area of Vancouver that bears its name. They have since expanded production into a facility farther east, and became part of the Molson/Coors conglomerate in 2009, which gave them a huge shot in the arm, distribution-wise. Now about this beer – its name refers to a pair of peaks north of Vancouver, and is apparently anticipated all year long, if you believe the marketing-speak.

This 341ml bottle pours a perfectly clear medium cola-tinted amber hue, with a satisfying amount of thinly puffy off-white head, which melts away at due pace, leaving some random specks of lace around the glass.

It smells of spiced, slightly sweet bread – ginger and nutmeg – quite light, all, with a further caramel/toffee maltiness, and a touch of smoky vanilla. The taste is replete with the aforementioned warming spices, a bit of yeastiness, a strong caramel malt backbone, some softly acidic hoppiness, and some earthy, sweetly boozy vanilla.  The carbonation is just about average, the body sporting an adequate medium weight, some sugary creaminess informing its overall smoothness. It finishes on the sweet side, as the spices drop away totally, leaving the caramel malt and vanilla all on their own.

With no appreciable warming from the tweak of extra alcohol, this is a nice, mild winter sipper, less spiced than many of its seasonal brethren, and another agreeable choice for those occasions when a six-pack is the order of the day.

Brady White

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