Our second beer from Full Sail Brewing; our last one was Grandsun of Spot IPA. Like Grandsun, Wreck the Halls is another beer from the Brewmaster Reserve 2009 Series. Wreck the Halls is an excellent name for a holiday beer—a perfect description of those holiday get-togethers with family where shit gets broken...
Wreck the Halls is a hazy deep copper color with an ivory head that quickly dissipates to a good sized ring. The nose is malty with some light fruitiness followed by pine and resin hop aromas. Starting with toasted and caramel malt flavors that are rather dry, Wreck the Halls has a sweet juicy middle—we’re not sure where the juicy is coming from, but we like it—and some pine hop flavors before ending dry, spicy, and bitter with some lingering light grape-flavored sweetness. Medium-bodied with a medium carbonation bite; there is also some slight puckering on the back of the tongue from the hop bitterness. I’d call this one the cream of the holiday beer crop of 2009, but Elli finds some of the ending fruitiness a bit off (it is slightly reminiscent of the grape flavor in Bell’s Christmas Ale). Still, hoppiness carries the day in this one—there is no potpourri in a glass, or anything like that. The mix of IPA and winter beer works well here; we look forward to trying this one again in the future.
From the bottle: “An annual holiday favorite, the hoppy holiday ale is aggressive yet sublime, assertive yet mellow, complex yet drinkable, and has a lot of hops in it.”
From the Full Sail website: “This annual favorite is a sublime hybrid of an American style IPA and a winter warmer. The result is a bold brew that celebrates the holidays with an intriguing blend of Centennial hops providing elegant citrus notes balanced by a backdrop of a rich caramel malt body. Dry hopped to amplify the aromas and flavor.”