Ale 1

It was only a short while ago that we were being inundated with all manner of pumpkin flavored foods and drinks in honor of Halloween. But now that October 31—and all the wild partying surrounding it—has come and gone, people in Japan seem eager to rush into Holiday Season mode, with Christmas displays and illuminations already popping up across town.

Alcoholic beverages are no exception to the trend, and today we thought we’d share with you a beer with a distinctly Christmassy flavor that sounds absolutely delightful. It’s the Apple Cinnamon Ale from Japanese brewery Sankt Gallen, and, for a limited time, the drink even comes in a special bottle with a beautiful Christmas label!

The unique beer is made from several lightly toasted malts, which give it an amber color and a slightly bittersweet flavor with caramel, along with baked apples, cinnamon and maple sugar, added into the mix. The resulting beer, we’re told, smells almost like apple pie, a pleasant aroma that can be enjoyed even by people who aren’t particularly fond of booze.

Ale 2

Originally marketed as an autumn/winter drink, the Apple Cinnamon Ale is currently being offered with a Christmas-themed label illustrated with an apple, a Christmas tree and a small snowman. It all fits nicely in with the seasonal theme, as apples were traditionally used as ornaments for Christmas trees.

The process of making this unique drink starts with baking 500 apples in one day, which is then processed the following day into a whole tank full or about 3,000 bottles of the beer. No sugar is added, and only apples grown in Nagano Prefecture are used.

▼ Goodness, that must smell divine!

Ale 3

We have a few vine videos from the Sankt Gallen website which show us what the baking process is like.

▼ The apples are washed and laid out on a pan.

▼ The apples go into the oven.

▼ See the apples getting baked—you can almost hear and smell them!

▼ And here, the apples are done; nice and baked, ready to be sliced and mixed with the wort that’s used to create the beer. It’s no wonder the whole brewery smells like apple pie when they’re cooking up this beer!

According to the product description, the foam tastes faintly of cinnamon, and the beer itself is a complex mixture of the caramel-like flavor of the malt, the slightly sour and fruity taste of the apples, the slight bitterness of the hop and the toasty sweetness of the maple sugar.

And this is also a beer that you can apparently enjoy even if it’s not ice-cold. In fact, it says on the Sankt Gallen website that having the ale at a slightly warm temperature actually brings out its sweet flavor and aroma, and they even recommend having it as a “hot beer” by heating it together with some cut apples, cinnamon, cloves and sugar.

▼ Hot apple and cinnamon beer sounds like an excellent way to keep away the cold!

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We have to say, the Apple Cinnamon Ale certainly looks like an attractive beverage option this Holiday Season. For those of you in Japan, the beer is available on the Sankt Gallen online shop at a price of 2,040 yen (US$16.62) for three 330 milliliter (11.16 ounce) bottles. Here’s wishing everyone lots of spicy, sweet goodness this winter!

Source: Sankt Gallen Brewery website (Apple Cinnamon Ale pageApple Cinnamon Ale Christmas Label pageApple Cinnamon Ale Christmas Label online order page, Hot Beer page) via Mynavi News
Photos: Sankt Gallen Brewery website (Apple Cinnamon Ale Christmas Label online order pageHot Beer page