Winter Beers

Winter Beers: Stout Season

First Snowfall of 2024

So it Begins….

As Ben posted on our Instagram page – The Beer Thrillers on Instagram – yesterday (Saturday, January 6th, 2024) we had our first snowfall of the year, and “so… it begins….”. (It is Pennsylvania Farm Show time of year after all, which all but guarantees its going to snow right?) It also made for absolutely perfect weather to meet up with Lew Bryson of “Seen Through a Glass” to do a podcast at Boneshire Brew Works.

Ah Yes, the first snowfall of 2024 for Central PA.  Temperatures keep dropping and it puts me in the mood for a nice toasty beer to warm me up.  It’s time to crack open the warmer beers.  I feel like I need to put on my big fuzzy slippers, an oversized robe and “I do enjoy a snifter of port at Christmas.” 

Do you drink?

I love a high ABV (when I’m home or not driving!) warm beer when this time of year hits.  It absolutely does NOT mean your girl won’t enjoy an IPA during winter, especially a hazy IPA!  As soon as crisp air hits I start craving a warm stout, porter or barley wine.  I kicked off the season with the Santa’s Bake from YAH Brew, (see my recent article – YAH Brew: Desserts and Beer Pairings). There are so many wonderful options for high ABV winter beers – stouts, porters, barleywines (Ben’s favorite), pastry stouts, barrel aged beers (typically bourbon barrel aged stouts), Belgian Strong Ales (SueAnn’s favorite obviously being Mad Elf by Troegs Independent Brewing), schwarzbiers, and so many more. Stouts in particular are my favorite at this time of year.

Stout Season

George knows what time it is – Stout Season

Last week for New Years we dove into Chonky Boi by Rusty Rail and Valley of the Kings by South County.   The Chunky Boi is a Barrel Aged Imperial Smores milk stout and the Valley of the King is also a smores stout  CB comes in heavy with 11% ABV and VotK comes with 8% ABV.  Both are sweet, satisfying and will warm you up on a cold winter’s night.  The CB comes at you just a little bit boozier from being barrel aged. 

There is a special place in my heart for a barley wine.  And usually on a cold night it finds it’s way!  I introduce to you, Mistress of Evil by Ever Grain.  This behemoth comes in at a 14.2% ABV.  After seeing the ABV I no longer question why this was sold in the 12 oz cans.  I purchased this precious on Christmas Eve after Ever Grain posted about it on Facebook I knew it had to help us jingle in the Christmas holiday. 


Also because it is stout season I decided to crack open two different types of stouts with Grandmas SueAnn today. 

We enjoyed Luminous by Rusty Rail, a white chocolate and Macadamia golden stout.  We also enjoyed the Rocky Road Stout by Pothole City.  Grandma SueAnn was trying to be cute by having me guess which one she opened first, but the golden stout was easy to pick out because it is a golden or blonde color.  Luminous is light and fluffy with a tinge of sweetness from the white chocolate and the flavor different from the Macadamia.  I know I’ve had this one before and it should be a part of the yearly rotation.  Luminous is a 8% ABV. 

That second stout we split was a little heavier at 10% ABV.  Rocky Road Stout is that delicious ice cream favorite but in stout form.  It goes down way to easy and smooth to be a 10%. It was a perfect afternoon splitting a few stouts with Grandma SueAnn.


We highly recommend trying out a few warmer beers this winter season. Hopefully the above pictures give you some ideas and act as some good recommendations for you. (Click each image to see the name of the beer and brewery.)

Also be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to see all of our beer related pictures, for more suggestions and ideas.

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Amy’s Column Series

Since getting back to writing for the blog after a short hiatus, Amy has started up a weekly column style writing for the blog. You can find these articles here:

(And please take a moment to fill out Amy’s survey on her ‘Holiday Weekend and Bomber Bottles‘ column.)

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