SAN FRANCISCO — Anchor Brewing Company announces the long-awaited return of its annual Christmas Ale, rolling out nationwide this October. First released in 1975, Christmas Ale is nationally recognized as one of the craft beer industry’s first hype beers and one of many ground-breaking brews that defined Anchor’s foundational role in the craft beer movement. Each year Anchor’s brewmasters craft a new secret recipe and bottle the limited-edition ale with a different festive hand-drawn tree label. Like last year, a portion of all sales benefit One Tree Planted, a non-profit dedicated to global reforestation planting millions of trees across 43 countries.
The 48th annual Christmas Ale showcases notes of orange, honeysuckle, toasted malts, and eucalyptus. Well-structured with botanicals and pleasantly herbaceous hops, this rye-forward brew finishes with a touch of spice like the warming bitter-sweet notes of Amaro, an Italian herbal liqueur often enjoyed as an after-dinner digestif. The 7.2% ale pairs well with hearty winter fare such as Roasted Achiote Chicken with Mole or a sweet treat like Chocolate Bundt Cake. Anchor Brewing’s recently retired Brewmaster Tom Riley drove the creative direction for the spiced red rye ale as the grand finale to his storied 38-year tenure at the iconic San Francisco brewery.
“Holidays at Anchor Brewing are always a special time to reflect on our history and the pioneering spirit that inspires our innovation,” says Anchor Brewing Company’s newly anointed Brewmaster Dane Volek. “Our incredible brewing team crafted a Christmas Ale that truly captures the essence of the holidays. We’re excited for fans to celebrate the season with us.”
This year’s hand-drawn label features a Blue Gum Eucalyptus tree, a nod to Mary Ellen Pleasant – a 19th-century San Francisco entrepreneur, financier, abolitionist, and civil rights activist. Pleasant, who is recognized as the “Mother of Civil Rights in California” for her impact during gold-rush San Francisco, planted Blue Gum Eucalyptus trees outside her Pacific Heights mansion shortly before her death in 1904. In 1974, the city of San Francisco designated the trees a Structure of Merit, recognizing them and their accompanying honorary plaque as Mary Ellen Pleasant Memorial Park.
Available through January 2023, Christmas Ale is offered in 12 oz bottles; signature, gold-foiled 50.7 oz magnums; and on draught at bars and restaurants across the country. Bay Area locals can enjoy Christmas Ale at Anchor Public Taps Taproom or visit the historic brewery in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood for festive Christmas Ale tours November through December.
About Anchor Brewing Company
Established in San Francisco in 1896, Anchor Brewing Company is America’s first craft brewery, a trailblazer and industry leader that has persevered through earthquakes, fires, and Prohibition. In 1965, Anchor’s new owner Fritz Maytag revived the brewery for a new era, charting a course that was foundational in the craft beer movement. During this time, Anchor reinvented its now classic Steam Beer, introduced the first American Pale Ale, and pioneered new brewing practices—such as dry-hopping—that are still used industry-wide today. As a proudly unionized brewery, Anchor’s dynamic portfolio of beers includes complex ales, refreshing IPAs, and iconic classics such as Anchor Steam, Liberty Ale, Anchor Porter, California Lager, and Christmas Ale. As always, Anchor Brewing remains committed to innovation while hand-crafting venerable beers that stand the test of time. Locals and Bay Area visitors can experience Anchor Brewing in-person at their iconic brewery and Public Taps taproom in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood.
To learn more, visit www.anchorbrewing.com
For Brewing fun facts, trivia, movies and more, Click Here.