The ale pours a crystal clear chestnut brown with ruby highlights showing through. It’s topped by a thick, rocky pad of cream-colored foam that shows modest retention. A smattering of residue clings to the sides of the glass. An aggressive pour yields the best head.
The aroma is a pleasant blend of piney hops and spices of cinnamon and nutmeg. Toasty malt and clove appear as the beer warms.
The palate is predominantly malty with a taste of toasty bread, dark fruits, and caramel. Bitterness is mild with a flavor of floral hops poking through in the middle. A mild pop of ginger and spices follow, adding some nice warmth. The finish is sweet with a blend of raisin, toffee, and dark chocolate. A flash of orange citrus also appears on the backend.
The feel is relatively smooth and somewhat chewy with its medium body and less-than-moderate carbonation.
The Wintertide Ale is well-crafted and worthy of being included in the Sierra Nevada Snowpack collection. Its aroma is spicy and inviting. Its palate exhibits a nice balance between the malt, fruits, and spices. The feel suits the style and although its alcohol is restrained, the use of ginger and spices supplies enough warmth. Wintertide is a solid Winter Warmer.