My Imitation Christmas Ale is nearly nearly ready to serve. I have begun to bottle it, so now it only needs to condition for about a week in order to build up a proper level of carbonation. It's a light amber color with a slight amount of haze. My experiences brewing mead leads me to believe that at least a portion of the haze is from the honey. And, since real Christmas Ale is not crystal clear, I don't feel that this as a flaw.

As an experiment, I will reserve one gallon and let it lager for a longer period of time. I have a feeling that as the more complex carbohydrates in the honey are consumed by the remaining yeast it will become more clear. The alcohol content should also go up somewhat, but I am more curious as to the taste after lagering.

I have named this years recipe Odinzale, in honor of the Norse god Odin who may be the original ancestor of the modern day Santa Claus. My wife picked the name, and I created a new custom label for it. The description from the label follows:
(Óðinn, Wōđanaz, Wōđinaz, Wōden, Wodan)
Odin, the chief god in Norse paganism, is most likely the original ancestor of modern day Santa Claus. Odin was described as a tall old man with a long white beard. During the frigid nights of Yule he would ride his eight-legged horse through the sky, punish the evil, and reward the good. The Norse, looking to copy Odin's generosity, exchanged gifts during Yule. Norse children would fill their boots with carrots or straw and leave them near the fireplace as a gift for Odin's horse Sleipnir. In return Odin would leave gifts for the children.
If you are one of my friends and family who gets a sample of the brew, please kindly leave me a comment below to let me how it tastes for you. I appreciate any honest critique, just let me know how you stored it (in the garage, in the refrigerator, etc.) and how it was served (ice cold, 50 degrees, in a glass, straight from the bottle, etc.).

And, remember to read my homebrew drinking tips.

Published: 2008-12-14