The snow is coming down and that means it's time for the beer of the month, Smuttynose Winter Ale. It is an amber beer perfect for preemptively staving off cabin fever. There's something woody and tea-like about the smooth flavor that subliminally suggests it will cure what ails and fortify against maladies real and imagined. The dark color is suggestive of water in frozen puddles turned brown by the dead leaves marinating in them. There is nothing festive about this winter beer. It is a solemn, almost sober beer. It is one for the months like February and March, a beer for seeing winter through. Or at least the next day or so.