Gritty McDuff’s Halloween Ale

For the first time in recent memory, I got out of work after 9 hours. Even though I had to do some work from home, it was definitely worth getting out early. Anyways, back to the fall beers…


ABV: 6%

Style: Extra Special/Strong Bitter

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Every fall marks the return of our legendary Extra Special Bitter for the season, Halloween Ale – the beer so good, it’s scary! From its humble beginnings in 1990 as a small-batch seasonal in our Portland Brew Pub, Halloween Ale has grown to be one of the year’s most anticipated beer releases. This robust brew has a deep amber color, a bold, malty palate and a well-rounded hop finish. The perfect beer for a crisp autumn day! Halloween Ale is available in ominous six-packs, and on draft at frightening establishments all over the terrifying state of Maine. Be afraid, be very afraid…of running out!”

Random: I’m not a big fan of the label of this brew.

This beer poured with a thick, two finger, cream-colored head that dissipated slowly and left a lot of lacing on the glass. the body was a clear, dark mahogany color with moderate carbonation visible. The nose had caramel malt and some gourd notes as well. The taste had caramel malt and a touch of mineral to it as well. Gourd came through as well. Toffee and tea came through as well. The body was on the thicker side with moderate carbonation. The finish was long with caramel malt and gourd. At $1.59 a bottle, this isn’t very expensive, but was a bit on the boring side. It’s nothing that I would search out for the fall.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Gritty McDuff’s Christmas Ale

Well, it’s almost Christmas. I happen to love Christmas, especially now that I don’t have to work it. Let me tell you, after 10 years of being in EMS, it’s so nice to be out. The one thing that happens around Christmas is my anniversary. I’ve already been proactive and gotten a reservation at one of the best restaurants in New Jersey. So, that’s where I’ll be tomorrow. For tonight? Updating the blog while the wife makes me a snack downstairs. I don’t blame you for being jealous.


ABV: 6.2%

Style: Extra Special/Strong Bitter

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “If it looks like Ed just got merrier, you’re right. Every November heralds the return of our holiday seasonal, Christmas Ale – available on draft and in six-packs. Our Christmas Ale is a robust E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter) full of holiday cheer. Christmas Ale has a lovely, dark red/amber color and a rich, full-bodied, malty taste with a slightly roasted undertone. We brew our Christmas Ale to an original gravity of 1064 (about 6.2% alcohol by volume) using only the finest English Pale and Crystal Malts, with a touch of Roasted Barley as well. A blend of Clusters, Styrian Goldings, Saaz and Yakima Goldings leaf hops round out this hearty brew. Gritty’s Christmas Ale has no additives, fruits or spices. It’s just a good honest ale, perfect for the season. And to top it all off, it’s already gift-wrapped! Happy Holidays!”

Random: I still have to shop for Santa gifts for the child. Quite different from last year.

This one poured with a half a finger white head that dissipated slowly and left no lacing on the glass. The body was a cloudy brown color with light carbonation visible. The nose was a typical brown ale with caramel malt and nutty notes as well. The taste was a definite brown ale base with some cinnamon thrown in for good measure. Honestly, the taste was relatively boring. It was nutty and malty, not much else. The body was medium thickness with medium carbonation. The finish was quick, yet nutty. This was only an alright brew. I wouldn’t rush back to have this again.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0