I could have sworn I had this brew before as part of Yukon Brewing's variety pack, The Dark Side, but it turns out Longest Night is not atually part of it; strange! Appropriately enough named, what with the Winter Solstice having just passed, Longest Night is a strong ale brewed with dark hops, resulting in a more balanced beer than comparably hued stouts and porters.
In the glass, it looks similar to a lighter-bodied porter, with a thin line of beige foam topping it off. Not a terribly strong aroma, but what there is smells malty, and I swear there are notes of bitter nuts and even chocolate lurking about in there, but maybe that is just holiday creep...
Slightly thinner mouthfeel than a porter, but that is to be expected, and it is still more than robust enough for an ale. The malts are a bit more up front with this one, with just a hint of caramelization, before the hop freshness sweeps the palate clean, leaving you with a crisp and bitter finish. Longest Night sticks the landing, to be sure.
At a comparatively modest 6% ABV, Longest Night probably should not be in the running for a session ale, but it would be easy enough to have a another one of these, and it is one of the few from the calendar that might make a good beer to have with a meal, as opposed to after or instead of one! I could see a lot of grilled meats or even burgers being a nice accompaniment to one of these.